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Confession: I didn’t know what “Momofuku” was until recently

19 Jan

This resident foodie has a confession: I didn’t know what “Momofuku” was until recently. Late to the party? I know. I love food but I don’t worship “celebrity chefs.” Also, like Bourdain, I have an aversion to hipsters … and I’ve only ever heard the word uttered by people who experience life ironically. I didn’t know that David Chang had revolutionized food.

But, like everyone who has Netflix, I’ve been watching Mind of a Chef on a loop. I have all of the ingredients to make a proper dashi and I’m pretty sure I’m gonna bake with a bandana à la Cristina Tosi. It was only natural that I had to try a bowl of ramen as interpreted by the master. I grew up in Richmond Hill/ Markham. So, noodles in broth aren’t a foreign experience. It’s “fast food.” It’s cheap but delicious. I needed to know what was so special about these noodles so I studied and even consulted Ivan Orkin‘s book!

With a reservation for 5:45 on Saturday, we were seated promptly. It must not be pleasant to be a hostess here – they have to manage an unwieldy velvet curtain (to protect diners from the cold) as they seat guests and process payments for Milk Bar products in a tiny space. The seating is communal for the most part, along with some stools and smaller tables. It seems they still haven’t really resolved the issue regarding winter coats as most guests just sat on their coats and scarves while scarfing their delicious hot noodles.

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The menu is carefully curated and we noticed immediately the range of local farmers and food producers who provide the resto with ingredients. There’s nothing like a chef who sources local food rather than parachute in products created by his friends. Thomas Lavers (Kensington Market) supplies their ginger beer!

We ordered the Kimchi and Pork Buns to start. The kimchi was packed tightly in a mason jar. It’s too much for two people … or so you think … I can’t get over the freshness and balance of flavours. The pork belly melted in your mouth and the cucumber and hoisin sauce reminded me of special dinners as a kid when we got peking duck.

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Momofuku Ramen

The Momofuku ramen is heaven. The broth is so well rounded and savoury. The noodles have snap (they are “toothsome”). The pork, similar to the pork belly in the pork buns but somehow richer, offers comfort and warmth. The Clam Noodle was served with less broth … more of a gravy. It had a healthy kick and the clams added the depth of the sea.

The service was abrupt but perfunctory. I don’t need my server to be my friend … though it wouldn’t kill some of the serving staff (the men in particular) to pretend like they enjoy working there. I was annoyed that this still seemed like a place “to be seen” — there was a table of three obnoxious hipsters drinking a tall can each and sharing a small soft serve. They split their bill three ways. WHY ARE YOU AT A NOODLE BAR?!?

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A visit is not complete without a visit to Milk Bar on the second floor. You can get everything you’ve ever read about: the corn cookie, mixes for all of their different cakes, and merch (because we all need another tote bag). Our haul: Compost Cookie, Corn Cookie (2), Blueberry & Cream, Maple, Pecan & Coconut, Cornflake Marshmallow, Birthday Truffles. The Corn cookies taste like corn. It’s a wild experience. The Birthday Truffles smell like happiness. These cookies each have unique textural qualities, are on the chewy (under-baked) side, and are incredibly rich so you should plan to share with only your favourite people.

I refuse to be a Momofuku “fan” – Chang doesn’t need another “cult follower.” But, I don’t get the hate-on some bloggers have for the guy. I love that he’s elevated the food I grew up on. I strongly believe that he gets good noodles and has crafted each element of this experience with love and care. This is the closest thing to a genuine bowl of ramen without getting yourself a ticket to Tokyo.

Momofuku Noodle Bar on Urbanspoon

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National Homemade Bread Day (November 17th)

14 Nov

Readers, you know #thesmugcouple LOVES homemade bread. We’ve done chewy bagels, crusty hearth loafs, sourdoughs, and savoury prosciutto rings. Your day is always better with fresh homemade bread.

November 17th is National Homemade Bread Day and Enoteca Sociale (1288 Dundas St. W) wants our readers to try their hand at homemade bread with their very special 5-ingredient focaccia recipe by Head Chef Kris Schlotzhauer. We can’t think of anything better to do on a crisp Saturday afternoon.

The end result!

The end result!

 

Enoteca Sociale’s Famed 5-recipe Focaccia  

Ingredients

640g all purpose flour
25g salt
6g yeast
450g water
50g olive oil
1 sprig of rosemary

Instructions

Mix dry ingredients together, then slowly add wet ingredients until fully incorporated.

Knead the dough for 5 minutes and then rest for 30 minutes.

Knead the dough for 1 minute and then rest again for 30 minutes.

Place the dough into an oil pan then cover with a damp towel and allow to rise for 1 hour.

Bake at 425F for 30 minutes or until internal temperature reaches 205F. Cool on rack.

The result: Great crispy crust and tender interior. I’m surprised how simple the recipe was to execute.

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Notes:

  • This is a simple recipe no overnight biga(starter) needed!
  • Based on our past experience, we would suggest incorporating the flour and yeast together BEFORE adding salt. Mixing salt with yeast prematurely (because the former kills the latter) might mean that your focaccia won’t proof (rise) properly.
  • This should also be quite a wet dough. Don’t over-knead the bread because this can inhibit gluten development. Eschew your stand mixer and just gently fold your dough on itself with a silicone spatula.
  • Dock (pierce the dough with a fork) the bread right before you put it in the oven.
  • I topped my focaccia with some sea-salt and more fresh rosemary.
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The first proof.

 

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Ready to be baked!

For bread enthusiasts who just want to indulge in Enoteca Sociale’s expertly baked goods, they’ve been offering a “Backdoor Bakery” since Spring of 2014. Starting at noon every Saturday (and until they sell out), carb-fans can try their Red Fife Sourdough or Rosemary Focaccia for $5. Grab one for yourself and more for your friends! Inside scoop: Holger Schoorl, their bread and pasta master, likes to experiment from time to time so expect some exciting changes to their Backdoor Bakery menu. 

Holger Schoorl, Bread Master

Holger Schoorl, Bread Master

Thanks to Natasha at ButterPR for sharing this recipe with our readers! YUM.

Taste LOCAL! Taste FRESH! – Foodlink gets local food

22 Sep

Taste Local! Taste Fresh!Foodlink‘s annual Culinary Showcase and Fundraiser, has ruined us for other food festivals. It’s not that the other past food festivals we have attended have disappointed, but that Taste Local! Taste Fresh! offered such a unique, fun, and, most importantly, DELICIOUS experience.

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The setting was a pastoral dream: a heritage farm with sprawling rolling green grounds. The event paired local food producers and chefs who worked together to create 19 tasty creations that celebrate the produce and livestock grown and raised in Waterloo Region. Guests were given passports and invited to visit different booths to sample the small bites. At each table, patrons had the chance to talk to these local culinary titans. Clementine plans on trying her hand at making applesauce this fall so we made a point to pick the brain of the representative from Martin’s Family Fruit FarmInside scoop: GO GET YOUR COURTLANDS NOW. Great for pies and apple sauce.

It’s almost impossible to single out any one particular chef/producer team, since all of their creations were outstanding. Honourable mentions go to Pyrus Cafe/ Pfennings Organic Vegetables for the maple candied tempeh wrap. So crisp and flavourful.

Maple candied tempeh wrap with fresh organic kale, collards and carrots (Pyrus Cafe and Pfennings Organic Vegetables)

Maple candied tempeh wrap with fresh organic kale, collards and carrots (Pyrus Cafe and Pfennings Organic Vegetables)

The Walper Hotel and Two Crows Growery served the most creative dish. Their “Homage to the Soil,” featured  pickled carrots with pea purée and poached crab apple stuffed with pork terrine served on top of a bed of EDIBLE SOIL, which we were told consisted of charred onions and leeks. It was like nothing we’ve ever encountered. Très originale!

Edible SOIL along with pickled carrots (Walper Hotel & Two Crows Growery)

Edible SOIL along with pickled carrots (Walper Hotel & Two Crows Growery)

The Rushes Restaurant/Shantzholm Pumpkins and Wildcraft/Herrle’s Country Farm Market teams did the best job showcasing food producer’s key ingredient and serving it in an unconventional way to make it the star of the show.

Pumpkin FOUR ways (Waterloo Inn/ Rushes & Shantzholm Pumpkins)

Pumpkin FOUR ways (Waterloo Inn/ Rushes & Shantzholm Pumpkins)

The former served pumpkin four ways: pumpkin bisque on top of pumpkin spätzle, garnished with toasted pumpkin seeds and a pumpkin focaccia crouton. The bisque was filled with warm spices and crouton was so crisp and savoury. The contrasting textures of the smooth bisque and bouncy pumpkin spätzle was delightful.The latter took the corn, for which Herrle’s is renowned locally, and made sweet corn pannacotta served on top of a sumac meringue.

Sweet corn panacotta with sumac cream, duck fat, meringue & pumpkin seeds (Wildcraft & Herrle's Country Farm Market)

Sweet corn panacotta with sumac cream, duck fat, meringue & pumpkin seeds (Wildcraft & Herrle’s Country Farm Market)

Our consensus favourite dish was produced by Public Kitchen and Bar, Mountain Oak Cheese, and Colour Paradise Greenhouses and Garden Centre. Their fluffy gouda pancakes topped with thyme and brown butter custard and chamomile honey hit out taste buds in all the right places. Garnished with a pansy petal on top, it was also a feast for our eyes!

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Foodlink, the organization behind Taste Local! Taste Fresh!, has been doing this now for 11 years. They know how to elevate a food event from just good to great. First, Steckle Heritage Farm had the ultimate rustic and historic charm. It’s unbelievable that you’re just a 10 minute drive from downtown Kitchener. Also, one of our most frequent complaints is that the music at such events is too loud, drowning out all attempts at conversation. Here however, the music offered by a single acoustic guitarist who played a mixture of classic rock and Canadiana (Blue Rodeo!) was the perfect ambient soundtrack to our culinary adventure. As another lovely touch, upon arrival, each patron received a one-of-a-kind pottery appetizer plate made by local artist Vicky Lucas.

Steckle Heritage Farm

Steckle Heritage Farm

We cannot wait to see what next year’s event has to offer. We will be back with our family and friends in tow. We suggest you do the same.

In the sitcom Frasier, the title character and his brother Niles once commented that, for them, the ideal evening was a perfect meal with one minor flaw that they could pick at all night. With its lack of flaws, major or minor, Taste Local! Taste Fresh! would have left them disappointed. Bad for the Crane brothers, but great for everyone else.

Congrats, Foodlink!

Taste LOCAL! Taste FRESH! – Foodlink’s Annual Culinary Showcase & Fundraiser

29 Aug

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Fellow gourmandes in the southwestern Ontario region, have you heard of the event “Taste Local! Taste Fresh!” ? Foodlink Waterloo Region is a grassroots nonprofit organization that promotes local food. They connect farmers with food producers, provide local food education and perform community outreach. Their goal is that more and more people have access to fresh local food.

“Taste Fresh!  Taste Local!” is Foodlink’s annual local food showcase as well as the organization’s only fundraiser. What does that mean? The event pairs local food producers and chefs who work together and come up with food creations that celebrate the bounty of our local harvest.  All the proceeds go towards promoting lovely local food.

Steckle BarnThis year, the will be held on the grounds of Kitchener’s Steckle Heritage Farm – it’s a beautiful barn which dates back to 1840.

Guests will sample the delicious creations of nineteen chef/producer teams, all while listening to live music and taking in on an historic property surrounded by the natural beauty of southern Ontario.

TLTFweb14The writers at YYZ, especially the #smugcouple, LOVE the fresh local food movement/ philosophy. One of the joys of summer is popping out to your local farmer’s market on the weekend, buying WAY too much delicious produce and then cooking up a storm all week. It’s the only way to live. That’s why we’re really looking forward to the 11th annual culinary showcase taking place at Steckle Heritage Farm on Sunday, September 14, 2014, 2-5 pm. 

For all foodies in southwestern Ontario, this event is your Woodstock!  We expect to see you all there! GTA readers, Waterloo is a mere 1h 20 min drive away. Your daily commute into Toronto is longer and way less scenic of a drive. So, no excuses!

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Tickets are on sale here, while quantities last: $70/ person or $650 for group of 10. Each ticket includes food and a hand-crafted pottery plate.

Follow this link for a full list of chefs, restaurants, food producers, and sponsors. Foodlink is also on Twitter (@FoodlinkBLBF) and Facebook, naturally.

Photos credit: Sara Geilinger. 

REVIEW – Optimal YOU, Christine Gingerich

24 Aug

IMG_20140815_203054_hdrWe love food festivals at YYZ because it’s an opportunity to meet all sorts of food producers and experts in drink in one place. Sometimes, you don’t even get to meet them in-person because there are too many great vendors, as was the case with the #WFDS, but they come and find you anyway!

Christine Gingerich is the enthusiastic (you can literally feel her energy radiate off your web browser when your read her emails) creator of Optimal YOU. She emailed us after the show and wanted to share her self-published cookbook. A Stratford native, she now makes her home in New Hamburg, ON, which is located just outside of Waterloo. She’s a teacher, life coach and health enthusiast. Like many people who re-invent their approach to food and eating, Christine’s health-concious recipes were born out of necessity.

We love cooking at YYZ and we’re trying to be healthier so we were eager to read her book.

Organization: This book is more than recipes – Christine teaches you a whole new strategy in the kitchen. Optimal YOU has tips for essential appliances, how to stock your pantry, and create meal plans. Christine does a mini lesson on healthy ingredients for those who don’t know the difference between your Kamut and Spelt flours. Fun fact: Christine uses her own blend of “healthy flour” (Rye/Oat/Barley) and a local mill is now producing the special blend for sale in-stores. How convenient! We also like the “tips” throughout the book designed to save you time and teach you facts about the foods and dishes you’re preparing.

Tested Recipes:

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Hummus!

Happy Hallelujah Hummus (p.60)- pretty simple, We didn’t have the dried parsley called for in the recipe so substituted with fresh. Pretty flavourful. Will add less salt* and more lemon juice next time. *Christine recommends using salted canned chickpeas and not adding any salt.

Pesto Perfection (p.61) – Christine offers an alternative to exorbitantly priced pine-nuts: hemp seeds. It tasted like regular pesto! Slathered over tomatoes, it made a delectable and satisfying lunch.

Fresh Living Salsa (p. 68) – Salsa isn’t something that needs improving necessarily. The addition of grated apples was an interesting concept but not to our taste. We do agree, however, that making your own is preferable (in terms of health and taste) to store-bought.

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Frijoles Refritos

Frijoles Refritos (Refried Beans) (p. 119) – We’ve always wanted to make re-fried beans. The recipe was simple and her suggestion of using pickled hot peppers added a delightful kick. We would make this again for burritos. There’s not much left in the picture … because we ate all of it before we took a photo.

We loved her flavour combinations for the salads – great way to jazz up regular ol’ greens. Her tip for using a frozen bananas in smoothies was also a winner because it gives it a milkshake like consistency.

We wholly endorse her liberal application of beans in her recipes. Beans are underrated in terms of health and flavour. Everyone could use more beans in their diet.

We would have loved to see even more veggies/ superfoods like kale, beets and chard, which are now readily available at your local market. We can’t wait to try out the roasted butternut squash soup when they’re ready to harvest!

Conclusions: While we can’t comment on the health claims made in Optimal YOU, we do think her emphasis on using fresh produce and incorporating lots of veggies in your diet is a great idea. The variety of recipes also shows that one does not have to sacrifice flavourful and interesting food just because you’re watching what you eat.

The book is visually appealing. One of the things we look for in cookbooks is pictures – something for us to shoot for. Nearly every recipe in this book is accompanied by a vivid photo that looks good enough to eat. This book is a testament to individual enterprise! We love seeing foodies who love food share that passion with the world.

Toronto readers – take note, Optimal YOU is available at Noah’s Natural Foods (Bloor St.) and Book City (384 Danforth Ave). Go and check it out for yourself this weekend.

REVIEW – Michael Smith, Family Meals (Penguin Canada, 2014)

17 Aug

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Full disclosure: the Gourmandes at YYZ don’t have kids so we don’t know what it’s like to have to navigate the different preferences in tastes, dietary restrictions, or how to include everyone in the cooking process. We bet it would be challenging.

We last reviewed Michael Smith Back to Basics in December. It was clear that he had special insight into working efficiently in the kitchen. He also knows how best to keep things running smoothly in his home kitchen. Some recipes, for example, like the “Weekend Pancakes” (p.12) have the tasks broken up for each individual kid in the family. Result: no fighting. I bet these tips would help you put your friends to work for a weekend brunch or dinner party. Eh, Cherry? He also offers organization and planning strategies that will make it easy to incorporate  healthy food options into any hectic work week.

The book is divided in “breakfast”, “lunch”, and dinner-type meals with a substantial section on “meatless” options. There’s a great section on slow/ pressure-cooked meals, which features classics like lasagna and “Rosemary Apple Braised Chicken” (p.144).  The lunch section was especially intriguing. Kids (or big kids like us) would LOVE the idea of a “tuna chip seaweed sandwich” or “lettuce wraps” in our lunch box.

Tested Recipes

Barley Kale Tabouleh

The Barley Kale Tabbouleh (excerpt here) salad is simple, elegant and so fresh tasting! It’s the perfect side dish to brighten up your favourite protein. I’m a fan of tabbouleh with a conventional smoother texture than in this salad but the use of kale and barley (as Michael says, you have “whole grain responsibilities” as a family chef) is so on trend.

Weekend Pancakes These are fluffy and healthy as 2/3s of the recipe consist of whole wheat/ whole grains. I also enjoyed using honey as a sweetner. The best part of this recipe: strategies on how to minimize the amount of dishes so that you don’t dirty every bowl and whisk in the kitchen … which is how *I* tend to make pancakes.

The recipes in Michael Smith’s Family Meals are mostly quick (except for the slow cook chapter), delicious, and satisfying meals. As I leafed through this book, I couldn’t imagine any tiny people revolting against their parental units over this food! There’s no sneaking in greens here or dressing up food to make it “friendly for kids.”  Kids, like people, respond to good food prepared with some precision and love. FYI: this is how you start raising your own gourmandes.

Thanks to Penguin Canada for making this review possible!

EXCERPT – Michael Smith, Family Meals (Penguin Canada, 2014)

17 Aug

Barley Kale Tabbouleh (Michael Smith, Family Meals, 2014)

This Barley Kale Tabbouleh recipe is simple and perfect for picnics, litterless lunches, and just a relaxing Saturday afternoon on the patio with a glass of wine. Enjoy! Make sure you check out the full review for more!

Barely Kale Tabbouleh (p.75)

Serves 4 to 6, with leftovers

For the salad

4 large kale leaves, tough center stems trimmed away

1 cup (250mL) of any barley

1 teaspoon (5mL) of salt

A handful of finely chopped parsley

Leaves from 1 bunch of fresh mint, finely chopped

4 green onions, thinly sliced

1 pint (500mL) of cherry tomatoes, halved

1 large dill pickle, minced

For the dressing

The zest and juice of 1 lemon

2 tablespoons (30mL) of olive oil

1 tablespoon (15mL) of honey

1 tablespoon (15mL) of your favorite mustard

½ teaspoon (2mL) of salt

½ teaspoon (2mL) of your favorite hot sauce

  • Stack the kale leaves, then roll them up tightly. Slice them as thinly as possible, forming fine threads. Cram into a small saucepan and add ¼ cup (60mL) of water. Cover and cook over high heat until the kale softens, just 2 or 3 minutes. Drain and spread out on a plate to cool.
  • Measure the barley into the same saucepan and add 3 cups (750mL) of water and the salt. Bring to a full boil, then reduce the heat to a bare simmer. Cover tightly and continue cooking until the grains swell, absorbing the water and tenderizing, about 30 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, in a large bowl, whisk together the dressing ingredients until emulsified. Throw in the tender barley, the kale, parsley, mint, green onions, tomatoes and pickle. Toss the works together, evenly mixing the flavors, textures and colours. Serve and share!

Thanks to Penguin Canada for providing the excerpt!

 

Ontario Gas BBQ Challenge with Charmian Christie (The Messy Baker)

21 Jul

Charmian Christie (The Messy Baker, 2014)

There’s no better way to celebrate the summer than to throw a couple of steaks on the grill and relax on the patio with friends! Five Toronto Food bloggers from the GTA have been selected to participate in a recipe challenge. They will be flexing their skills using Ontario Gas BBQ (OBG) tools and creating delicious original recipes from July 1 – 31, 2014. The victor of the #OGBChallenge will be chosen by popular vote.

We had the chance to speak to one of the contestants: food writer, recipe developer, and soon-to-be cookbook author, Charmian Christie (The Messy Baker: More than 75 Recipes from a Real Kitchen, 2014) who graciously shared with us her thoughts on BBQ.

Clementine (YYZGourmand): Why do you love to BBQ?

Charmian Christie (CC): The practical part of me loves that no matter how hot the BBQ gets, it doesn’t heat up my kitchen. We have a small stone house with no air conditioning, so once it heats up, it stays hot. I dread turning the oven on in the summer and the grill provides the perfect solution. The cook in me loves the flavours provided by the smoke and charring.

YYZ: What is your favourite item to BBQ?

CC: It’s hard to pick a favourite since the BBQ makes almost everything taste better — even broccoli. That said, rotisserie chicken is likely the winner . Although it’s not complicated, it draws raves every time I make it. No one ever tires of it. And that alone is worth a bonus point or ten. Check out Charmian’s recipe for Spicy Grilled Broccolini here and Herbed Rotisserie Chicken here.

(Source: The Messy Baker, 2014)

YYZ: You’re a baker by trade – what delicious baked goods have you created on a blistering hot BBQ? What would you like to bake on a BBQ?

CC: I’ve done pizzas and really loved the charred crust the hot grill creates. It’s perfect for flatbreads and anything baked quickly on high heat. Beyond that, I don’t really bake much on the grill since most of my recipes require a precise heat. However, it’s great for grilling fruit to top oven-baked goods like scones, or smoking sugar to use in desserts. My husband’s still talking about the smoked sugar ice cream.

Smoked Sugar Ice Cream (Source: The Messy Baker, 2014)

Smoked Sugar Ice Cream (Source: The Messy Baker, 2014)

YYZ: Your Italian turkey meatballs sound flavourful and light – what is your secret to keeping them moist off the grill?

CC: Don’t overcook them! Between the Thermopop meat thermometer and the grilling basket it’s easy to achieve moist, properly cooked meatballs. Also, turning them every few minutes helps. It’s hard to do damage if they’re flipped frequently.

Charmian’s delectable Italian Turkey Meatballs (Source: The Messy Baker, 2014)

YYZ: What’s your drink of choice on the patio when BBQ with friends?

CC: Depending on what we’re eating, it’s a bottle of chilled pinot grigio or icy cold dry apple cider — both from Ontario if possible.

A baker who knows her way around the grill! I’m smitten. We wish Charmian the best of luck against some formidable competitors. You, dear reader, can help Charmian (and win prizes yourself) all month long by visiting #OGBChallenge and voting like mad!.

 

*This post was brought to you by Branding & Buzzing and the Ontario Gas BBQ Challenge!

WRAP-UP: Waterloo Region Food & Drink Show, 2014

3 May

IMG_20140426_153745Let’s get the obvious out of the way: the annual Waterloo Region Food & Drink Show was, in our estimation, a huge success. We’ve attended our fair share of food festivals and the show organizers managed to avoid the pitfalls which detract from the experience such as: poor lighting, over-powering music, a lack of interesting vendors, or poor organization of space.

The first thing that we loved was that the majority of the vendors were local.  It gets a bit boring to see the same vendors over and over on the food show circuit and there is clearly a buzzing food scene in Waterloo Region. Lesson: EXPLORE SOUTHERN ONTARIO!

With admission, guests received a souvenir tasting glass.  Guests received a variety of goodie bags dependent on where they purchased their tickets. Tokens to purchase samples were $1.00 each and most samples cost a reasonable 2-3 tokens. Cooking and tasting seminars cost 2 tokens per person. In our experience, this was great value for your money.

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The show was spread across two floors which left ample room for enjoying your samples and talking with vendors without elbowing your way through crowds. We noticed that the organizers seemed to have thought of everything including stations to wash out your glasses between samples. The live music (smooth jazz standards performed by the Tim Moher Jazz Group**) was a sophisticated, unobtrusive backdrop.  Note to other food festivals: blaring, generic rock music makes it difficult/impossible to talk with vendors or fellow patrons.

Down to our favourites:

Victoria Street Market: For a mere 3 tokens, we got to try a HUGE plate of cured meats: lachsschinken (German prosciutto), gypsy salami, and manitoba sausage. The manitoba sausage was advertised as the first meat with omega 3s – super delicious and healthy for you! We left with a rucksack filled with cured meats.

Waterloo Brewing Company: We love WBC but almost walked by this booth because it’s our rule at food festivals to try new products from unknown vendors. BUT, then we saw that their tasting menu included a brand new summer treat: the grapefruit RADLER. Traditionally made with lemonade, this beer-based mixed drink is the perfect thirst quencher on a hot summer day … if we ever get there.

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Chef Scotty Cooks, Gourmet Food Truck: To wrap things up, we wanted to try something from the food trucks. Chef Scotty offered the most intriguing choices and we couldn’t turn down his crazy triple fusion dish: Butter Chicken Gnocchi Poutine. The dumplings were tender and pilllow-y. The spices of the Butter Chicken warmed our tummies on the unseasonably cold day. We will be stalking Chef Scotty’s movements wherever he roams … we want to taste more of the love!

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Honourable mention: FREE MUSSELS, provided by Prince Edward Aqua Farms

A thoroughly excellent show. What more is there to say other than we were impressed and will be back again next year. Definitely.

** Tim Moher was a local elementary school teacher and now rocks out for a living.

Thanks to Dana Demers at Grand River Shows for making this review possible!

Waterloo Region Food & Drink, 2014

25 Apr

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Foodies rejoice! There’s a great food & drink show in Waterloo this weekend. Exhibitors include local favourites like the Great British Bake Food Truck and Caudle’s Catch Seafood (a major sponsor of the event). We also spied Rosewood Estates Winery on their list of exhibitors. Fair readers, they make MEAD. If you ever want to feel like a Tudor king/ queen, you need to get yourself some mead.

This event will also be a place of learning with scheduled talks and demonstrations from local oenophiles, chefs, and brewmasters.

Even though it looks a bit rainy this weekend, you should stop by and check this out if you can!

April 25-27, 2014

Show Hours:
Friday  5pm – 10pm

Saturday 12pm – 10pm

Sunday 12pm – 5pm

  • 19+, no children, no infants.
  • Admission: $12 per person/per day
  • Sample tokens act as the official show currency; tokens can be purchased in increments of $10 (10 tokens)