Tag Archives: Toronto the good

Purple Penguin Cafe

I really want to start talking a lot more about nifty stuff in Toronto – places we’ve been, food we’ve eaten, things we’ve seen. And this came to me of course as soon as I had something that I knew you’re really gonna want to try yourselves: the apple fritters from the Purple Penguin Cafe. (They’re also on facebook and twitter – well, the cafe is, not the fritters 😉 )

Located in Leslieville right at the corner of Queen East and Logan, they’re open every day and occasionally have a sale on the fritters – 12 for $12 (instead of the usual $15 – which is obviously still an awesome deal for freshly-made apple fritters!)

We stopped by Saturday morning, calling about 30 minutes in advance to reserve a dozen – they were quickly enjoyed by everyone at work. So quickly I forgot to take a photo so had to ask June for one:

We also picked up a chocolate brownie for the Mighty Q. He said it was good and when I asked if he could compare it to other brownies he’s had, without hesitation he declared it the “best ever. ”

(I’m not going to bother to tell him it’s vegan and gluten free!)

vegan AND gluten free! who knew!?!

Oh and a better picture of the “best ever brownies” (remember this is the kid who is on an ongoing search for the city’s best pain au chocolat!)

best ever brownies

And then on Sunday, when we were out running errands, Toby asked “where was that place that you got the amazing apple fritters.” And he ate his a good 7 hours after I picked them up. It just so happened we were driving up Logan so I was sure to point out the purple corner!

taken from google search

Definitely a local business we’re happy to support – fresh, natural, and amazingly delicious.

(a final note, these are definitely my thoughts, I paid for everything, it wasn’t until after everyone devoured the fritters that I thought it would make a good blog post. I did ask June for some pictures but well after I did the draft and she’s gonna see this post at the same time as all of you!)

B is for Beer

So like I said in the Main B post I went outside my comfort zone and bought a new beer: a limited edition release barrel aged kriek from Big Rock brewery. Which is basically a cherry sour beer. I shared the first bottle with our friend who was kind enough to make a pit-stop that day to pick them up.

enjoyed at the Hotel Cavell

An amazing colour. A wonderful smell. Not something I could drink. So one of the bottles made it to our best friends and another to our piano teacher. Which leaves the fourth. Which randomly ended up having the same number as our house. I’m holding on to that one!

Then there was a pint (another barrel aged) and the Big Sleep before our dinner out at the Fifth.

at the bar hop bar on Peter Street

And the new-to-me brewery Muddy York – an old nickname for Toronto.  And yes, while they have a few IPAs (my favourite style), they also make porters, lagers, and stouts and more!

The website lists 19 current beers (and 5 retired ones!) although not all the current ones are available right now. In any event, they list:

  • 6 pale ales
  • 3 IPAs
  • 2 lagers
  • 2 porters
  • 1 amber ale
  • 1 bitter
  • 1 double IPA
  • 1 hefeweizen
  • 1 hoppy wheat
  • 1 stout

I’ve had two IPAs, a bitter, the hefeweizen (which is one of my new favourites!), a pale ale and a lager. And one smoked beer they don’t currently list on the website (drinking something that tastes like smoke is a little weird for me). I’m likely only to have a taste of the porters and stouts, or maybe I’ll head to the brewery for tastes of them. But I’d love to work my way through them all. Hmmmm I wonder if they do flights in the bar! I’m trying to do low carb now for a bit again so it’ll all have to wait.

Dinner at the Fifth – take two

Sometimes things don’t go as well as you expect. And it really did start out as a first world problem: I was the high bidder on a bunch of restaurant gift cards and experiences at a fundraising event for the National Ballet School.

One of the experiences was a dinner for four at the Fifth Grill & Terrace. I had heard such great things about the food and it turns out Toby sang at an event there once! So we invited a couple of friends to come with us at the end of October last year. And after a welcoming start, nothing went well.

When we got there we were asked for any allergies and how hungry we were. We all replied enthusiastically! We were also asked whether we wanted just a “meat” menu or just a “seafood” menu or a mixture of both. Three of the four of us said a mixture and one said meat. It was a fairly involved conversation.

The first dish was lobster bisque. It was very nice. But we had no idea what it was. Two servers came, put the bowls down and walked away. The same happened with the salad. No description, we had to wave someone over.

Then I asked what beers there were and had to explain to the server that “Granville Island” was a brewery that made several beers and he kept saying the beer was called “Granville Island.” I asked him to go get it for me. You get the idea.

So I emailed the restaurant a couple of days later and set out everything and, after a bunch of emails back and forth, we were invited back to try again. We were all a little nervous but game to give the Fifth another chance. And we are so glad we did!

We went back the other night and the entire evening was amazing; everything you’d expect a chef’s tasting menu to be! The food was fantastic – from a delightful amuse-bouche to that wonderful lobster bisque to an amazing steak tartare with a fried quail egg and possibly the best beef cheek I’ve ever had. And, amazingly, they also added wines to each course for us and accommodated my red-wine aversion with aplomb. In fact I really need to figure out which white Burgundy they gave us. I _need_ that wine.

The service was wonderful, the room is beautiful and the food incredible. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend it for a special evening out.

Q loves the Ontario Science Centre day camps

Q has been at Ontario Science Centre day camps this week. He has loved every one that he has done – he did a couple of PA day ones last year too. A bit odd that they insisted I register him as a 5-year-old when he is six on Friday (TOMORROW!!! uhm nope, not anymore TODAY) but there you go.

Tuesday – Super hero theme

Me: So, how was camp today?
Q: great!
Me: did you learn how to fly?
Q: No?
Me: shoot spider webs? or ice?
Q: no momma. This was REAL science.

Wednesday – circus theme

Me: I wonder what you’re going to do today when it’s a circus theme. Do you think you’ll become an elephant?
Q: No momma. (insert sigh) I told you. It’s real science that we do. And we get to play and our recess was in the space area and and and

Thursday – magic theme

Q hides in his room before bedtime

Me (to Toby): Ha! Finally! He learned how to disappear at the Science Centre magic camp!
Q (comes rushing out): No momma. We do real science!

So no surprise then when, at bed time, Toby says “Good night lovely boy. See you tomorrow when you will wake up 6.”
Me: Nope. Not until 1:23 p.m.
Q: what ?
Me: You were born at 1:23 in the afternoon. When you wake up in the morning you will still be 5. In the afternoon you’ll be 6.
Q: that’s not fair! the day doesn’t change. I am 6 the WHOLE DAY
Me: yes, you’re right. You are 6 from as soon as you wake up.
Q: You are too literal sometimes momma. The day is what counts.

See you in September!

Where has the year gone? It’s already September! Funny though how September stills seems almost as much of a new year/new start time of year as January. Decades of going to school will have that effect I guess.

Q will be starting school soon – junior kindergarten here we come. But before that we had to end our summer the way I remember it as a kid – at the Ex! Or more formally, The Canadian National Exhibition.

Lights, sounds, smells, the CNE has it all. My crazy food choice this year were the deep fried red velvet battered double stuff oreos. Whew. BlogTO does a nice write-up of some of the options.

Far nicer picture from blogto.com than one I could take

Far nicer picture from blogto.com than one I could take

Q loved the rides – I especially liked the ones that I was too tall to ride with him lol

IMG_2018

I had to go on the roller coasters with him

I had to go on the roller coasters with him

And as an extra special treat we got to go to two TFC games! Thanks Nannu for being away and leaving us the tickets 🙂 Q seems to be some sort of good luck charm for our boys in Red. Two games – two wins!

What does this row of numbers mean momma?

What does this row of numbers mean momma?

mmmm ice cream on a stick!

mmmm ice cream on a stick!

One last week before school starts….I need to do some shopping stat! Rain gear, lunch box stuff, water bottles….wheee

Do you have any end of summer/start of school traditions?

goofy face ;) and I don't mean mine!

goofy face 😉 and I don’t mean mine!