Hello everyone! Taste of Toronto was in town again last weekend and I was fortunate enough to receive media tickets to attend again. Since our 2nd date fell during Taste of Toronto last year, obviously the HF had to be my guest again this year. As per usual, this is food pic heavy so if you’re hungry, you might want to grab a snack first!
There were many new and interesting restaurants participating this time around and lots of culinary feats to see.I’d never seen a whole lamb cooked like this (sorry vegetarians/vegans) and that gigantic Kamado grill…the HF enjoyed chatting it up with the grill master about it. Our first stop was at the pop-up of the day, which was Carver on Saturday. We indulged in the Porchetta Tacos (2 of them in an order!) and Lemon Roasted Chicken Pizza. The porchetta was tender and juicy and the strong flavours from the chili crema and pickled red onions really kept it punchy. The lemon aioli on the pizza perfectly accented the roasted chicken and played really well with the acidic notes of the tomato sauce. A fantastic start to a night of eating! Next, we knew we had to try the Grilled Duck Dog from The McEwan Group. I’m still dreaming about that awesome Calamari Po Boy from last year’s event, so I was confident they would not disappoint. The foie mousse was very light and the duck dog itself was seasoned perfectly. The most notable ingredient for me however was the duck bacon as it had that delicious duck flavour with that satisfying saltiness of bacon. All in all – not as much of a showstopper as last year’s po boy, but still a delicious choice. My favourite booth however was definitely Kanpai Snack Bar with Chef Trevor Lui at the helm. I actually randomly met him last year at Taste, when his girlfriend/partner struck up a conversation as I was enjoying my Kinton/Kinka picks. We were chatting then all of a sudden, he appeared and at first I couldn’t place where I knew his face from, but when he gave me his card, I was pleasantly surprised. He didn’t remember this exchange, but I found out before going that my Vice Principal actually grew up with him. Once I dropped that name, he managed to get me the biggest pieces of chicken! While I waited for my order from Kanpai, the HF went over to Barque to line up for their St. Louis Cut Competition Ribs and boy am I glad he did. The Taiwanese Fried Chicken and the St. Louis Competition Ribs were probably my favourite dishes of the night! The chicken was insanely juicy with the perfect amount of seasoned batter. That hot sauce was acidic and spicy, yet still had a hint of sweetness. The ribs – so tender, and that bbq sauce was what dreams are made of. I also got the Okonomiyaki Char Siu Bao from Kanpai – another yummy choice (okonomiyaki sauce, kewpie mayo, bonito flakes, Chinese bbq pork), but the star of that booth was definitely the TFC. The HF wanted to try the Wild Boar Corn Dog from Antler, so I obviously had to take a bite. It was a bit too game-y for my taste, but he was definitely a fan. Obviously, I couldn’t leave without dessert and one of the top food trends hitting the scene right now is charcoal ice cream. Wooffles and Cream was offering this charcoal vanilla sundae with a cookies and cream HK egg waffle skewer, and caramelized wheat puffs on the bottom to add that crunch. I definitely need to trek it out to the actual shop in Markham because WOW. We left with full bellies and happy hearts as per last year 🙂
Thanks so much to Taste of Toronto and Faulhaber Communications for the media tickets! This is absolutely my favourite food festival and I cannot wait to see what’s on the menu for next year! It is THE event for true foodies who want to try some of the top restaurants in Toronto all in one place. Be sure to check out http://toronto.tastefestivals.com for more information, and follow them on Twitter and Instagram at @TasteofToronto.
Did you attend Taste of Toronto this year? What were your favourite dishes? Let me know! Thanks so much for stopping by!