Posts Tagged ‘cocktails’

Dec
11


It’s that time of year to bring out the cocktail accessories and enjoy a bit of cheer during these long winter nights.

coctail-stuff

I recently attended an event that featured some pretty lovely cocktails. The one on the right was my favourite.

cocktail-mrs

Its’ called The Mrs.!
To a flute glass, add:
• 1.5 oz SKYY Vodka
• .75 oz freshly squeezed lemon
• .75 oz simple syrup
• 4–5 mint leaves
Top with Prosecco and garnish with a mint sprig.

I love the story behind SKYY Vodka. It all started with the motivation by one mans’ search for a better martini. The solution was simple: Start with a better vodka. He was not only an entrepreneur but an engineer as well, who set out to create a superior tasting vodka with fewer impurities and unmatched quality.

Another cocktail I enjoyed was this:

cocktail-pretty

Here’s the recipe for this cocktail!

The Wild Turkey Boulevardier
In a mixing glass, stir to chill:
• 1.5 oz Wild Turkey Bourbon
• .75 oz Campari
• .75 oz Cinzano Rosso
Pour over ice in a rocks glass or strain into a coupe glass. Garnish with orange zest

All you need is some friends, some cocktails and some appetizers! Go for it and enjoy the holiday season.

cocktails-board

Cheers!

For more information: 

Instagram/Twitter: @WildTurkeyCanada @SKYYCanada

Hashtag: #CampariCanada

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Sep
19


The other day I received the following message via facebook.

Hi Vicky- sounds like you are having a great trip… My parents are in Jerusalem now and are going to tel Aviv tomorrow to the Sheraton. Do u have any suggestions for them? where they should go… Different ideas than the regular .. Thx

Here’s a list of attractions that I’d visited over the last few days that I suggested to my Facebook friend:

1. Tel Aviv Museum of Art: I hadn’t been to this museum in over 3 decades and I’m so happy that I went. I must admit that one of the reasons I went was because a foodie friend of mine went a few months ago and his photos on facebook really impressed me. The building itself is stunning not to mention the exhibits themselves. It’s also a great way to escape the sunshine between 12 and 2 pm!!

tel-aviv-museum

tel-aviv-museum-2

2. Sarona Market: Even though I was in Tel Aviv in April 2015 – this market opened just after I left.

tel-aviv-sarona

This market brings the “best” of the country to one place. The variety of food in this market was perfect – restaurants, beer, wine, candy, fresh fruit, halva, bakeries, paletas, etc. My tummy was in heaven. I must add that I was lucky enough to have a “tour of Sarona Market” with a well respected Israeli Food Writer. Highlights of my tour included: Captain Curry and Forela Fish Bar.

Here’s a photo of my delicious Smoked Trout Shawarma from Forela Fish Bar!

tel-avivi-sandwich

Seriously, how pretty are these olives?

tel-aviv-olives

I couldn’t bring back the olives with me on the plane, but I certainly did buy  Rusty’s Almond Butter (with Halva) which is made here in Israel! #supportlocal

tel-aviv-almond-butter

3. Carmel Market: This market is a true Israeli Experience. Its crowded, busy and so much fun! I visit this market every time I’m in Tel Aviv. It’s a must.

4. The Old Tel Aviv Port:  A great area to stroll around as it’s on the water and this adds to the atmosphere.  There’s plenty of restaurants, retail stores, cafes and ice cream to keep Israelis and tourists very happy!!

5. Delicious IsraelThey offer unique food tours and food experiences. I was able to participate on a food tour of Levinsky Market and it was certainly a highlight of my trip. Read more about my tour by clicking here.

6. Nahalat Binyamin: I love this outdoor arts & crafts fair that is held every Tuesday and Friday. I always find gifts here and happy to support Israeli artisans. Not to mention it’s a fun scene.

Sadly I only took a photo of this piece of jewellery and I’m kicking myself that I didn’t buy one. #nexttime.

tel-aviv-nahalat

Attractions I didn’t have time to visit:

Old Jaffa Port: Such a gorgeous place to walk around but I just didn’t have time.

A Cocktail Bar; Apparently Tel Aviv has some pretty swanky cocktail bars (click on the link – pretty please)  and after googling “Cocktail Bars in Tel Aviv” – it’s evident that I need to go on a “cocktail crawl” on my next visit.

Jewish Diaspora Museum: I haven’t been in decades but it was always one of my favourite museums.

Tel Aviv is a beautiful cosmopolitan city with a lot to offer. I was fortunate enough to stay in Tel Aviv for 7 full days and can’t wait to visit next year!!

For more information about Israel – please click here.

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Dec
15


Last week, I went to 3 new restaurants in 4 nights. Im paying for it this week and will be eating a lot of Kale Salad this week!! However my week is nothing compared to a food writer I know that often goes to 3 or 4 media events each night!!

Here’s what kept me busy last week:

a) CC Lounge: This is a prohibition era-inspired cocktail bar and supper club that is in a stunning Ontario Heritage Building. CC Lounge is a 4,000-square foot lounge which is draped in crystals, velvet and gold and features private booths made of hundred-year-old whisky barrels, a custom 10-foot-tall birdcage for showcasing dancers and North America’s first whisky tasting tunnel housing over 100 varieties of whisky.

This is how I was greeted!! Talk about making a statement.

restaurants - cage

The cocktails and the whiskey tunnel, were impressive but for some reason that night I focussed on the food!!

restaurants - cc

b) Borealia: This restaurant has a menu that draws inspiration from historic foods of the natives, early settlers and subsequent immigrant groups who arrived in the 18th and 19th century. The media dinner was nothing short of outstanding. I would run back for the pine scented smoked mussels in a heart beat. Not to mention the whelk was another one of my favourite dishes. They are opened Tuesday to Sunday from 530 pm. Closed on Mondays and Tuesdays.

restaurants - borealia

c) BarFish: This is a swanky bar at Blowfish King Street West which features cocktails, sake, and some pretty fabulous sushi. Sadly I didn’t capture the space as it was kind of dark but I did manage to get a few photos of the specatacular sushi thanks to @foodsisterhood that provided me some light with her iPhone!

restaurants - barfish

For more information:

CC Lounge: Front St E, Facebook: www.facebook.com/CCLounge Twitter: CC_Lounge

Borealia: 59 Ossington,  Facebook:  www.facebook.com/BorealiaTO  Twitter: @BorealiaTO

BarFish: 668 King St. West Facebook: www.facebook.com/BlowfishRestaurant Twitter: #BarFish

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Jul
11


I know..I know….I’ve posted three restaurant reviews in a row. I promise next week there will be NO restaurant reviews K? However bear with me for my last restaurant review K? I attended a media event for Portland Variety and they really nailed it with some spectacular presentation and flavours. Not to mention…they serve coffee that is WICKED.

Ok let’s start from the beginning.

The front of the restaurant serves breakfast (coffee and pastries etc) …take out lunches (sandwiches etc) and after work there is this INCREDIBLE spread of  tapas.  I mean INCREDIBLE…with incredible prices too. There’s also dinner!!

portland - spread

Now let’s talk about the food that is served during dinner. Top Left:  Chickpeas in a creamy sauce, Top Right: Smoked Octopus, Iberico Chorizo, Smoked Tomato, Olive Oil, Lemon. Bottom Left: Crispy Pork Rinds that I wrapped up and put in my purse (no joke).  Bottom RIght: House Made Ricotta with Honey, Hazelnuts and Pear

I’m in love with all the sauces. I could marry them!

portland - food

I didn’t taste any of these cocktails but I sure did want to take a photo of them. One drink was prettier than the next drink!

portland - drinks

Naturally I didn’t have any battery left to take photos of the desserts but I beg of you to try to beignets. (I haven’t begged before but seriously – Im begging you this time).

As for the coffee. It’s not to be missed. Milton (one of the co-owners) made me a spectacular Americano. It was so good that I had one at the beginning of my meal and one at the end of my meal. This is NOT something I do on a usual basis – especially at night.

portland - coffee

ps..Notice how gorgeous the machine is? Well, there’s only 2 in Toronto and he spent a week in Delaware learning how use it!

Congratulations to Portland Variety. I can’t wait to return.

For more information:

Porland Variety  587 King St. W, Toronto (416) 368 5151

Twitter: @PortlandVariety

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May
29


The other day, I received a last minute invite to check out the Grand Opening of Touhenbokus Ramens’ newest location at 2459 Yonge St. I didn’t mind at all, as I live about  2 km’s away and was curious to visit. You see, I was invited to the Grand Opening of their first location (261 Queen St) where I indulged in some ramen – but  this particular invitation was inviting me to sample their tapas and cocktails. I was intrigued to say the least. (ie …no ramen?)

When you enter the restaurant, you immediately notice the “more upscale” decor than their Queen W. location. I really think they did a great job with the space…just the right amount of classy and hipster. (does that make sense)?

yonge - space

I then found out that there’s TWO menus. A lunch menu (with ramen options) and a dinner menu that will be served after 5 pm. (ie tapas and cocktails).

yonge - menu

Indeed I sampled a cocktail that was off-the-chart-amazing.  It’s called the KINGYO (remember this) and it’s made with Shohu, mint, hot peppers and soda. What a unbelievable combination. I would order this again in a heart beat. Talk about refreshing.

yonge - drink

I also sampled the food. Something tells me that I will be returning to try the Godzilla’s Egg! (see above menu)

yonge - food

Hope you get a chance to visit them one day soon. I have no doubt that the neighborhood is going to love this restaurant.

For More Information:

Touhenboku Ramen: 2459 Yonge St. or 261 Queen St. W, Toronto  416 596 8080

Twitter: @TouhenbokuRamen

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May
27


Here’s five reasons why I’m loving Cottage Life.

1. The sunsets are spectacular. Disclosure: I might have taken more photos of the sunset thanI did of my meals. Shocking!!

life - sunset

2. There’s a sauna at the cottage but it’s not your average sauna. It has a wood oven in there – and it takes over an hour to heat up the sauna. Nothing beats a “steamie” followed by a dip into the cool (errr….cold) water. This is a priceless experience.
life - sauna

3. I get to cook without having to go to the grocery store (every 2 seconds)  cause I forgot an ingredient!! This week I whipped up an eggplant dish – even though I forgot some key ingredients. Sometimes it’s great to improvise.

life - cook

4. I also get the chance to create my own “signature” cocktails. This past weekend, I took these 4 ingredients..placed it into my Kitchen Aid Diamond Blender and bingo…da best drink ever. ps I froze the raspberries. I think @cocktaildeeva would be proud. (I think)

life - cocktails

5. I get to read and relax on the dock. Yes – that’s right I get to read. There’s no  internet or TV…which is an invitation for me to get lost in some books! Believe it or not – I just figured out how to download books from the library. This weekend I read: The Rosie Project by Graeme C. Simsion. I actually found  myself laughing out loud a few times, which is a really good sign that I enjoyed the book. Feel free to send me any book suggestions K?

I’m sure I will come up with another 5 reasons why I’m loving Cottage Life. Stay tuned.

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Jul
11


 

I bet you think I just ate my way thru Barcelona and didn’t see anything but restaurants and the Boqueria Market. WRONG. I actually did go sightseeing!!

I accomplished this by using Barcelona Bus Turistic Bus which allows visitors to see many of the attractions in Barcelona. There’s a blue line, a red line and a green line. It’s tremendous value and well worth the money. If anyone is visiting Barcelona and has limited amount time – this is the way to see Barcelona!!

I spent a full day on the blue line and a good chunk of the time on the red line too.

The Blue Line allowed me to see the following attractions: (please note, there are 14 stops)

The famous football stadium (um, can  you say MASSIVE?)

barcelona - stadium

A Chocolate Museum ( I’m a food blogger so of course this was of interest to me)

What a cute entrance ticket

What a cute entrance ticket

barcelona - park

The Red line allowed me to check out: (please note, there are 23 stops but I just didn’t have time to see everything)

The Barcelona Beach

barcelona - beach

The Aquarium

barcelona - aquarium

Of course, after a long day of touring I was thirsty and needed a drink. So I spent Saturday Night sipping some amazing cocktails courtesy of the W Hotel Barcelona. The Eclipse bar is located on the 26th Floor and was a spectacular location to watch the sunset and re-hydrate!

w hotel

The friendly bartenders were also skilled and knowledgeable about mixing the perfect cocktails. See this? 4 bottles – 2 hands.

w hotel - bartender

I enjoyed the following drinks (all of them..hee hee). To be honest – there were 2 more drinks!

barcelona - w drinks 2

Barcelona is truly a spectacular city with lots to offer. I didn’t stop moving for the entire 4 days that I was there.

For more information please visit Barcelona Tourism.

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Mar
21


 

I received an invitation to an event called “Taste of Iceland” that was going to be held at the Drake Hotel, from March 21-24, 2013. I have to admit, that it was the cocktail listed on the invitation that really caught my attention. Specifically, I am talking about the “Sons and Daughters” cocktail that was going to be served that night!

iceland - drink

What’s in the drink? Let’s see …some pretty interesting ingredients! Reyka vodka, aquavit, lemon juice and caraway seeds, muddled thyme, and sea butckthorn syrup.

Not your average cocktail. I RSVP’ed very quickly – “Please add my name to your guest list”.

Not only did I enjoy my cocktail (or two), but I enjoyed multiple servings of EVERYTHING.

The evening started off with:

-Hardifskur  w/Icelandic butter (I would travel to Iceland just for this butter!!)

-Grilled Icelandic Langoustine, with garlic, butter and herbs

-Atlantic Shrimp and Lumpfish Caviar, with pickled vegetables and citrus vinaigrette

-Deep Fried Crispy Balls of Cod Potatoes with “Sol” mayonaisse

-Pickled Herring on sweet rye bread, curry dressing, green apples and spring onions (I had 3 of these).

iceland - 2

icleand - photo 1

The main courses included:

-Naturally Raised Icelandic Salmon – cold smoked salmon with grainy mustard dressing, sour cream dill oil, and Icelandic rye bread

-Free Range Iclelandic Lamb – seared Icelandic lamb filet with glazed root vegetables, juniper berry infused lamb jus and wild Icelandic blueberry herb dust.

iceland - salmon

I inhaled EVERYTHING. My table mate, Adam Mazerall from View the Vibe actually said ” he never saw someone devour something so quickly.

Needless to say, I barely had breakfast or lunch the following day!!

For those who can’t hop on a plane tomorrow and head to Iceland – please head to the Drake Hotel from March 21-24 to experience the food and the culture of Iceland. In the meantime, I think I’m going to add Iceland to my bucket list of places I want to visit!!

Drake Hotel 1150 Queen St. West Toronto 416 531 5042

Taste of Iceland: on Twitter: @IcelandNaturally

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Mar
15


 

I went out on Wednesday  night with a fellow food blogger (@th3hungrycat)  to a new restaurant called Aft Kitchen & Bar. (which of course I will be blogging about). She recognized another foodie  that was sitting at the bar, so we went went over to say hi. We chatted about food, exchanged business cards, twitter handles etc.

On Thursday, I exchanged a few emails with @MoezKassam regarding food events and foodies he might want to follow on twitter. One of the events that I forwarded to him was a Local Food Movement event at  Jamie Kennedys’ Gilead Cafe featuring Dillon’s Distillers.

Next thing you know I am hanging out with this fun group of foodies at the event!

@spekallen @annamanouvkovski @missysiegs @moezkassam

@spekallen @annamanouvkovski @missysiegs @moezkassam

Of course, I am also drinking some featured $5 drinks!! (thanks again@moezkassam)

Dillon's Unfiltered Gin, Dillon's White Rye, Dillon's Vodka Method

Dillon’s Unfiltered Gin, Dillon’s White Rye, Dillon’s Vodka Method

What’s unique about Dillon’s Distillers is that they are LOCAL and located in Beamsville Ontario. Not to mention they are using local ingredients for their products. (rye, gin, bitters and vodka too)  Trust me, as soon as the weather warms up I will be driving out there to visit the distillery and get a tour. In the meantime, please visit their website. (which I love by the way).

It was a fantastic partnership to hold the event at Jamie Kennedy’s kitchen as he is a huge supporter of the local food movement. I was thrilled that I had the opportunity to attend this great event and hang out with some amazing foodies.

Chef Jamie Kennedy and Geoff Dillon

Chef Jamie Kennedy and Geoff Dillon

For more info:

Dillon’s Distillers, 4833 Tufford Road, Beamsville ON (905) 563 3030

Gilead Cafe, 4 Gilead Toronto (647) 288 0680

Aft Kitchen & Bar 686 Queen St East, Toronto (647) 346 1541

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Sep
16


It’s been a year since I moved into my apartment so I thought it would be an ideal time to celebrate that occasion. Here’s a list of key ingredients to hosting a great party.

1) The Invite List: I included some twitter friends and some “real friends”. A perfect mix. Just look how everyone is chatting away in this photo. There were 12 women in total and it was just the right amount given the size of my apartment!!

There were 12 women in total and it was a perfect mix.

2) CREWMEN & Co: I had a (gorgeous) bartender for the evening, courtesy of Crewmen & Co and let’s just say that my guests “loved” the eye candy and the fabulous cocktails that he created. I would hire this company again in a heart beat. Our bartender was engaging, professional and knew his way around the bar.  He was certainly a highlight of the evening!!

Um..hello…can I have a martini please?”

3) The Drinks: I had a great line up of Skyy Vodka, Great Lakes Beer (the Pumpkin Ale was just released, by the way) bottlegreen Sparkling Presses , 3 types of juices, wine, club soda, and tonic water, limes and lemons. Everyone was happy. I was thrilled to find out that Skyy Vodka has the fewest impurities among leading vodkas AND ZERO CARBS. This vodka was perfect for my #nocarb diet!!

Something for everyone!!

4) The Food: I served some amazing nosh that I had been “saving” (no I am not a hoarder) from my trips to Ottawa, Buffalo, Montreal and even Detroit. The black garlic was a hit…that’s for sure. Oh yeah – the Chocolate Chex got a lot of love too.

Black garlic that I bought in Montreal. Hope to find it here in Toronto one day soon

 

5) Good Music: I finally subscribed to Rdio but there was so much chatter that I’m not sure anyone heard the music.

6) Creating an atmosphere: This is my favorite part. I finally had an excuse to visit my favorite flower shops on Avenue Road and Davenport. Not to mention, I brought out  some pewter serving dishes that hadn’t been used in a while. Here’s what the table looked like:

Seriously….. throwing a party isn’t hard work and I can’t wait to throw another one. Nothing like surrounding yourself with new and old friends on a Saturday nite.

Try it!!

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