Tucked away at the corner of Adelaide and Portland, Campechano Taqueria (@campechano_to) is a small and cozy restaurant that quietly opened its doors to the public a few months ago. They have taken up for the former Sadie’s diner location and is now serving their take of a Mexican fare. Their menu is a very simple 2 page read. I knew in a matter of seconds what I wanted to indulge in.

DSC_1048

We arrived on a Monday evening around 5:30pm. We wanted to beat the rush our dinner crowd – and trust me, its always a good idea!

DSC_1051

{Left} Sangria ($9.00)
{Right} Jamaica
 – hibiscus flower ($2.25)

DSC_1064

Guacamole ($6.00)

DSC_1067

Camarones ($4.75)

  • Chipotle shrimp, pineapple

DSC_1075

Bistec ($4.75)

  • sirloin cap

DSC_1081

Barbacao de borrego ($5.50)

  • braised lamb leg

DSC_1087

Papa con Chorizo ($4.50)

  • pork sausage, potato

DSC_1092

Dessert ($4.00)

DSC_1094

Tacos are something I can never say no to and this place didn’t let me down. Although there are some things I enjoyed more than others, I still left this restaurant with my “taco cravings” satisfied. The items I would order over and over again are: the gauc and chips and the taco that I am dying to come back for – the Camarones (chipotle shrimp and pineapple). Don’t underestimate how powerful the kick is to this taco and although I have a lower than below average tolerance for spiciness – the Camarones is a must try! The mixture of the spiciness with a sweet and juicy pineapple ending is what makes it so tasty and addictive! I also opted for the braised lamb taco – it was good but nothing to write home about. Last but not least, the dessert (the only option of the evening) had a texture that I would compare it to a Panna Cotta. The taste had a very rich and decadent caramel flavour that they have generously drizzled all over the plate. A few tiny bites at a time is the strategy to savour this dessert otherwise the taste can be too powerful.

They are closed on Sundays. It’s a good thing I work considerably close to Campechano so I can come back on a week night to order more of my Camarones!blogsignature

Campechano Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

As I’m composing this blog post, I’ve come to realize that I’ve never visited a restaurant dedicated to just grilled skewers in Toronto. Sure I’ve ordered skewers here and there when its offered but never had the opportunity to visit a restaurant specializing in just yakitori. Nonetheless, I’m delighted to share my “first official” yakitori experience with you.

Established in the winter of 2014 above KINTON RAMEN 2,  KINTORI YAKITORI (Twitter: @KintoriYakitori / Instagram: KintoriYakitori) is a cozy tapa-style eatery specializing in delectable drinks and authentic Japanese grilled skewers, or “yakitori”. KINTORI YAKITORI serve bite-size pieces of the finest meat and veggies held together by bamboo skewers imported from Japan and cooked over a charcoal fire. Staying true to the tradition of Japanese grilled cuisine, KINTORI YAKITORI uses Binchotan charcoal imported from Japan. Made from oak, Binchotan charcoal creates the perfect grilling conditions for yakitori, emitting no smoke or unpleasant odours.

DSC_0943

Chicken Original Soup

DSC_0946

Oshinko Moriawase

  • assorted housemade Japanese pickles

DSC_0952

Negima

  • chicken thigh & tokyo scallion

DSC_0955

Zuri

  • Chicken gizzard

DSC_0965

Nikumiso Kyabetsu

  • cabbage salad with housemade chicken miso dip

DSC_0966

Tebasaki

  • chicken wing

DSC_0971

Uzura Kushi Age

  • panko breaded deep fried quail egg

DSC_0974

Premium Gyu-Tongue

  • premium beef tongue

DSC_0981

Tsukune

  • chicken meatball

DSC_0987

Hatsu

  • Chicken Heart

DSC_0990

Reba

  • Chicken Liver

DSC_0997

Asparagus

  • panko breaded deep-fried asparagus wrapped with bacon

DSC_1003

Negi Shio Gyu

  • beef with scallion sauce

DSC_1006

Dashi Maki

  • Japanese omelette

DSC_1010

Yaki Onigiri

  • char-grilled rice ball with plum filling and sweet terriyaki sauce

DSC_1016

Houji Cha Brulee

  • roasted green tea crème brulee

DSC_1018

My first official yakitori was quite the experience. It definitely pushed me out of my boundaries and gave me a new perspective on items I was previously reluctant to try – and by that I mean organs. Nonetheless, Chicken Gizzard and Chicken Heart turned out to be one of my favourites that evening. The texture is quite the something else (gizzard being a bit chewy) but it tasted amazing. I also really enjoyed the beef tongue and beef with scallion sauce (incredibly juicy)! The sauces used here were subtle and never overpowering which enabled the natural taste of the meats to shine through.

It’s always satisfying to indulge in an entire meal of pure meat. All skewers were prepared really well – everything during this tasting was pleasant on the palette (no smoke or unpleasant odours) I can’t wait to come back – Thank you for making this such a great experience!

blogsignature

This meal was complimentary but Foodinthecitytoronto.com remains unbiased in our content.

KINTORI YAKITORI Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Located in the heart of the Financial District, Little Fin is a cozy seaside style shop tucked away on Temperance Street.  Little fin is basically every seafood lover’s best friend serving items from sandwiches, to lobsters (served 4 ways), salads and of course the classic fish n chips & mac n cheese! The shop is crazy busy during lunch hours (especially during the summer) and a little bit less stressful during dinner time.They are part of The Chase Hospitality Family – neighbours to the Chase Restaurant.

DSC_0677

Calamari Po’ Boy ($11.00)

  • sweet corn relish & pickled onion

DSC_0664

Close up shot of the potato wedges

DSC_0667

Close up shot of the coleslaw

DSC_0668

‘Shipwrecked’ Salad ($12.00)

  • poached shrimp & creamy avocado dressing

DSC_0669

Shrimp Mac ‘N’ Cheese ($13.00)

  • pork belly, grilled shrimp & sesame breadcrumbs

DSC_0672

Soup of the Day: Broccoli Soup with Chorizo

DSC_0673

Prior to this visit, I’ve actually visited Little Fin a few times. There are some things I like more than others – the mac n cheese,  epitome of comfort food, was superbly cheesy. I couldn’t get enough of the sesame breadcrumbs and shrimp. I also thoroughly enjoyed the ‘shipwreck’ salad, it was a very light and refreshing salad & anything with avocado dressing literally screams “eat me”. The salad was a good alternative for me since I found the calamari po’boy sandwich to be slightly heavy for me (could possibly have been due to all batter). All in all, Little Fin is a seafood lovers place to go especially if you’re looking for a quick lunch (tables available) or also take away with items being packaged nicely.

blogsignature

This meal was complimentary but Foodinthecitytoronto.com remains unbiased in our content.

Little Fin Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Portland Variety – home of one of my favourite brunch spots! Every time someone suggests to go their for brunch I’m like a little girl jumping up and down – totally hits the spot for me every time. So imagine my surprise when I saw an invitation to the restaurant to check out their new winter dinner menu! Located on the South West corner of King West & Portland, Portland Variety prides itself for serving “a variety”. Chef Matty Cowan is all about the textures, variety, flavours, and culinary inspirations.

Tequila Bong ($14.00)

  • milagro silver tequila, grand marnier, fresh lime zest, cherry syrup, mango juice, hickory smoke

DSC_0766

Cauliflower Popcorn

DSC_0765

Roasted Heirloom Roots

  • Burrata, terragon, walnut pesto, herbs

DSC_0769

Whipped House-Made Ricotta

  • Spice roasted plums, pistachios, grilled sour dough

DSC_0771

Nikkei Ceviche

  • striped bass, aji de maracuya, persimmons, taro chips

DSC_0772

Grilled Octopus

  • Chorizo Jam

DSC_0776

Sticky Lamb Ribs

  • Harissa & maple glaze, spicy peanut brittle

DSC_0780

Piri Piri Fried Hen

  • Hot Honey Glaze

DSC_0784

Braised Short ribs

  • truffled semolina polenta, glazed roots

DSC_0788

Gnocchi alla Romana

  • kabocha & burnt butter puree, pinenuts, sage

DSC_0789

Beignets

  • Bite sized vanilla custard doughnuts

DSC_0791

So 99% of the time, I hate Tequila – but the Tequila Bong was the best thing that ever happened! Seriously – the cocktail went down so smoothly, I cannot express into words HOW MUCH I loved the drink. I swear it was something to do with the hickory smoke as well! One of my many favourites was the Ceviche – it was different but definitely in a good way. I’ve never had ceviche with a melted cheesy base but it tasted amazing. The brasied short ribs and the sticky lamb were “melt in your mouth” good – the pieces of meat literally just fell off the bone – So incredibly tender and juicy!

blogsignature

This meal was complimentary but Foodinthecitytoronto.com remains unbiased in our content

Portland Variety Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Hello all you Turkey fans out there ! Over the Christmas holidays, I had a chance to check out  Echelon Foods(@EchelonFoods) Turducken. I thought this was totally an unique concept – I mean come on! A turkey stuffed with duck stuffed with chicken?! Since this turducken brought a lot of smiles across the dinner table, I thought it would be a great idea to share it with all you turkey loving peeps out there :)

Echelon Food‘s Turdurken is a de-boned duck and chicken breast wrapped up with Italian or Chicken apple sausage stuffing into a whole turkey. The original turducken serves 12-15 adults!

original_turducken_chicken_apple_bag_grande
Photo Credit: http://www.echelonfoods.ca/

These turkeys are literally made oven-ready. Not much work was required (which is a plus for me!) Echelon made the commitment to making gourmet food accessible when they started making their turducken roasts oven -ready, allowing cooks to buy a frozen, all-meat turducken that needs only to be defrosted and roasted in the oven.

When I received this at the door, the turducken arrived in a gelpacks/ice container. It was kept extremely cold and fresh. We did a quick thaw method, popped it into the oven, baked without basting, and then served it to our starving guests.

original_turducken_chicken_apple_grande
Photo Credit: http://www.echelonfoods.ca/

To defrost, you can simply thaw your Turducken in the refrigerator for 5 days or for rapid thawing place in sink or bucket with cool water for 24 – 36 hours.

1. Low Temperature Cooking – Conventional Oven (Most Popular Method)

  • Heat oven to 220°F. Place the bird on a rack and put it in an oven pan and set it in the centre of the oven and bake until internal temperature exceeds 165°F. Cooking time: Internal temperature is the best indicator. As long as it takes for the internal temperature to exceed 165°F is how long it takes for your turducken to cook. Please allow approx. 60 – 75 mins per kilogram. e.g. an 11lb (5 kg) Turducken may take up to 7 hrs. Note: there’s no need to baste or cover with foil, although many of our customers do prefer to have their turducken covered in foil for the first 2 – 4 hours of cooking. If bird is not elevated on a rack, accumulated drippings may have to be removed from the pan every few hours so that the lower portion does not deep fry in the hot oil.

2. Slow Cooker – ‘Crock Pot’

  • Set slow cooker to ‘high’. Place your turducken inside and close the lid. After 1.5 -2hrs change setting to ‘low’ and cook until internal temperature exceeds 165°F. Cooking time: Internal temperature is the best indicator. As long as it takes for the internal temperature to exceed 165°F is how long it takes for your turducken to cook. Please allow approx. 60 – 75 mins per kilogram. e.g. an 11lb (5 kg) Turducken may take up to 7 hrs.

3. Barbeque – Outdoor Grill

  • Ensure propane tank is full. Light grill. For best results keep one burner switched to OFF. (Ex, one a two burner BBQ keep one side off; on a three burner BBQ keep the middle burner off.) Bring temperature inside grill up to a constant 220°F. Place foil wrapped turducken directly above the burner that has been switched off so it is not over direct flame. Close lid and cook until internal temperature exceeds 165°F. Cooking time: Internal temperature is the best indicator. As long as it takes for the internal temperature to exceed 165°F is how long it takes for your turducken to cook. Please allow approx. 60 – 75 mins per kilogram. e.g. an 11lb (5 kg) Turducken may take up to 7 hrs. Note: Many BBQs are difficult to ensure a constant temperature. Check frequently for high flames and flare ups. Check internal temperature often.

4. High Temperature Cooking – Conventional Oven

  • Heat oven to 350°F. Place the bird on a rack and put it in an oven pan, or if you don’t have a rack – cut up a couple of carrots, onions and celery, put in an oven pan, place your Turducken on top of the veggies, add some white wine and water in and set it in the centre of the oven and bake until internal temperature exceeds 165°F. Cooking time: Internal temperature is the best indicator. As long as it takes for the internal temperature to exceed 165°F is how long it takes for your turducken to cook. Please allow approx. 30 – 45 mins per kilogram. e.g. an 11lb (5 kg) Turducken would take up to 4 hrs. Note: Using a high temperature we recommend basting the Turducken during its roasting time every ½ hour to keep it nice and moist. Use its own drippings mixed with water and white wine.

29ea089d-7001-4ea9-a5fa-5d02211b5d9b    original_turducken_detail_1_grande
Photo Credit: http://www.echelonfoods.ca/

blogsignature

This is a sponsored post but Foodinthecitytoronto.com remains unbiased in our content.

I’ve been to many of The KEG Steakhouse & Bar’s (The KEG) over the years but HOW is it that I’ve never visited the King West location. It’s definitely one of the nicest locations I’ve been to. A little bit more upscale, less family style (of course – its King West we’re talking about here!) but still a great place to grab a steak. The crowd is a little bit more mature, all the seatings/ booths feel a little bit more private. Luckily enough for me, I was invited to visit the King West location last week to check out the launch of their new cocktail menu.

DSC_0902

Apricot Whiskey Sour

  • J.P. Wiser’s Deluxe whisky, apricot brandy, fresh lemon juice, apricot nectar and a splash of ginger ale.

DSC_0857

Cranberry Smash

  • Woodford Reserve bourbon, Chambord, Jägermeister, cranberry juice and simple syrup, fresh lemon juice and muddled cranberries.

DSC_0859

Pomegranate Royals

  • Absolut vodka, Pama pomegranate liqueur, honey syrup and fresh lemon juice topped with Freixenet sparkling wine.

DSC_0861

Blackberry Mule

  • Absolut vodka, Cassis, fresh lime juice, muddled blackberries and a splash of ginger beer.

DSC_0867

Tuna Tartare ($15.00)

  • Sesame-soy seasoned Ahi served on fresh avocado.

DSC_0866

Tuna Tacos ($14.00)

  • Ahi tuna on warm tortillas with cabbage slaw and cilantro. Served with jalapeño maple aioli

DSC_0874

Escargot ($11.00)

  • Stuffed mushroom caps with garlic and herbs.

DSC_0880

Flat Iron Steak & Shrimp

DSC_0887

Kansas City Striploin ($39.00)

  • 18 oz bone in striploin
  • Serving and grilling with bone in to add more flavour, still very tender

DSC_0891

Creme Brulee ($7.00)

  • Silky and smooth. Topped with a caramelized sugar crust.

DSC_0895

We sampled quite a few cocktails that evening. All the cocktails shown above (except the cranberry smash) are all KEG size. My favourite was definitely the apricot whiskey sour. I can never say no to a whiskey sour and the one made here was sweeter than what I’m normally used to but who am I to say no when there’s fruit added to your drink =) All the appetizers were amazing – especially the tuna tartar. I have to say portions are very generous (I don’t think we would have ordered 3 appetizers having known that appetizer portions size were going to be large). Unfortunately, the steaks in this post are only available until the new year. Having said this, there are still a galore of choices on their regular menu. I couldn’t be happier with what we ordered – my Kansas City Striploin  was perfectly done with ace charring on the outside and cooked perfectly rare. I’m beyond pleased with our overall experience.

blogsignature

This meal was complimentary but Foodinthecitytoronto.com remains unbiased in our content.

The Keg Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Behold the newest addiction to the Distillery District – YES! Cacao70 is finally here! Cacao 70 (@Cacao70_mtl) is a Montreal based dessert restaurant specializing in chocolate and is finally opening their 3 first locations in Ontario.

I was tres excited when I first found out they were opening and I was even more excited when I found out they opened at the Distillery during the most festive time of the year =)  I’ve never had a full on chocolate dinner from head to toe – can you totally feel my excitement? haha

DSC_0796 DSC_0798

64% Guayaquil ($9.25)

  • A chocolate possessing strong, full flavour, with a nice lingering biterness

DSC_0808

Vintage Hot Chocolate ($6.75)

  • Melted chocolate served with a cup of hot milk on the side (choice of white, milk, semi-sweet and dark)

DSC_0809

Sweet Chocolate Experience for Two ($23.95)

  • a milk chocolate classic waffle, fresh strawberries, bananas, chocolate coated cereal, marshmallow for grilling, chocolate covered ice cream, milk chocolate fondue for dipping and a small hot chocolate for sharing with your own grill

DSC_0802

DSC_0812

DSC_0820

Nutella Fruit Crepe ($9.00)

  • a thin French crepe stuffed with Nutella and fruits (choice of strawberry, banana or raspberry) drizzled with chocolate sauce

DSC_0818

Feel Good About Yourself Pressed Crepe Sandwich ($12.75)

  • smoked turkey, mushrooms, tomatoes and swiss cheese served with a green salad.

DSC_0823 DSC_0825

If you’ve in the chocolate festive spirit & need a place to relax your little feet after roaming the Christmas Market – you can give this place a try! Keep in mind they’ve recently opened. They are a few minor kinks that will be worked out! Nonetheless, I liked my nutella banana crepe!

blogsignature

This meal was complimentary but Foodinthecitytoronto.com remains unbiased in our content

Cacao 70 Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 139 other followers