Loka, Toronto

Chef Dave Mottershall hard at work

If you’ve followed Loka’s story from the beginning, you’d feel quite emotional when walking into their brick and mortar location at 620 Queen Street West. Chef Dave Mottershall began this venture as the infamous @chef_rouge on Instagram posting incredibly appetizing food porn for his many,many followers. His pop-up at Hi-Lo on Queen East was such a success that it became a regular feature of the bar. Cue extremely successful Kickstarter campaign, some blood, sweat and tears going into renovations and voila: Loka opens its doors to a hungry Toronto. A... Read The Rest →

Thanksgiving Dinner

Just after Thanksgiving is over in all of North America, we can look back at the epic meal we got to share with those near and dear to us. If you get hungry or want to join our meal squad, drop us a line and the Notes On A Meal crew will definitely sign you up for whatever event we may be cooking up in the near future (get it?!!? cooking up!!…. I know, real lame). Anyway, the dinner was aimed to remain as local and seasonal as possible with... Read The Rest →

The County General, Toronto

Located at the corner of Shaw and Queen West, this little venue is something to be reckoned with. Opened by Victor Barry and Carlo Catallo, the owners of Splendido, the County General offers a variety of greasy spoon classics with a new age twist. The food is delicious and is pretty much always available, even for take-out, since the kitchen runs until late. And to make things even better, they have a great cocktail list! The restaurant is very small, less than 30 seats, so don’t be surprised if you... Read The Rest →

MMM (Ma Maison Macarons), Spring 2012

Here’s the new macaron line-up for the 2012 Spring season: Dark Chocolate – Valrhona’s Nyangbo dark chocolate ganache Wild Strawberry – White chocolate and wild strawberry ganache Carrot Cake – Cinnamon cream cheese with a carrot and cinnamon curd Lemon Basil – Lemon and Basil infused white chocolate ganache Salted Caramel – Smooth and silky caramel filling with a salty and crunchy feuilletine crisp Pistachio – Ghana milk chocolate and pistachio ganache

Ma Maison enters a gingerbread competition

Just in time for the holidays, the Ma Maison team decided to enter a fierce but fun gingerbread competition. The rules were simple, make “something” out of gingerbread was basically all we were told. The construction had to be 2x2x2 feet and everything except the base had to be edible. Ma Maison came up with the idea of a bakery and although our results didn’t win the prize, a few great lessons were learned in the process. Here is what was created and some of the competitiors

Guu Sakabar, Toronto

Having just opened its doors in the beginning of 2011 this location of the Guu empire (another location in Toronto, six in Vancouver and one in China) has definitely taken the Annex by storm. Located a block east of Bloor and Bathurst this Japanese pub (Izakaya) is constantly busy and I can definitely understand why. The atmosphere is fantastic, the food is strange but definitely tasty and the staff is probably the friendliest around. I promise you won’t be leaving the venue disappointed. If you’re interested in dining or even... Read The Rest →

The Socialist Pig Coffeehouse, Gananoque

I know this little coffee shop is off the beaten path but if you find yourself in the 1000 island area, this is a cafe worth visiting. Located just across from the town hall in Gananoque (21 King St. East to be more precise) the cafe shares the main floor of a corner lot with its sister restaurant, Pig Iron Barbecue. Husband and wife team work together in bringing their customers fresh, local and delicious food. Local and seasonal food is on the menu for both venues allowing the shared kitchen... Read The Rest →

Final meal at Marben, Toronto

I am very disappointed to have to write this review but I think in light of the situation, I need to stand up for what I believe! Marben has a special place in my heart but all feelings aside, Notes on a Meal readers deserve my honesty. A few months ago, my fellow diner and myself received a meal that was a little off (a.k.a. expired to the point of stomach malfunction). It was a very unfortunate accident and it was forgiven and forgotten due to the numerous outstanding meals... Read The Rest →

Marben Restaurant – Once Again

Having become a regular at this establishment I felt the need to write a little update on the progress that this restaurant is making. Being open for just three months, the word about the wonderful food at Marben (in Toronto on Wellington St. West) has spread like the plague. Their business has boomed and to be honest, it appears as though nothing but the energy of the staff is being compromised with this increase in reservations. The food is definitely the highlight of any Marben experience. With outstanding combinations of... Read The Rest →

Etobicoke Farmers Market

It’s definitely the time of the season when all fruits and vegetables are flourishing and most certainly the best time to visit a farmers market. Not necessarily for the prices but for the quality and freshness of the ingredients available there. My family and I have been avid consumers of the Etobicoke Farmers Market (located in the Etobicoke City Hall parking lot at Burnhamthorpe and West Mall) every Saturday for the past few years. From it’s beginning in early June until the very last few “warm” weekends around Thanksgiving, Ontario... Read The Rest →

Lee Restaurant in Toronto

Anyone who has tuned into the Food Network at least once in the past decade knows who Susur Lee is and what he’s capable of producing. He’s definitely among the great chefs of this city that have managed to put Toronto’s culinary abilities on the North American map. His restaurant is located on King St West (east of Bathurst) and seems to be attracting quite a lot of buzz and it’s definitely well deserved. It was an extraordinary dinner and the chef was humble enough to even make his rounds... Read The Rest →

Eat Your Colors

EAT YOUR COLOURS I really like colourful food ~ vibrant squash, heirloom tomatoes, black garlic, peppers, beans, salts (the list is endless). Germans call these truffle potatoes. Upon opening the pack it’s easy to see these are from the ancient Andes culture called Peruvian purple. They have a very long history stretching continents.The skin is dark, almost black and spotted with many eyes. Inside is a vibrant purple flesh. After cooking them the skin becomes almost dark grey and the flesh is an amazing deep purple. These Peruvian purples are... Read The Rest →

Marben Revisited

I must admit, it was definitely the creativity and passion that went into making the food exceptional that brought me back to Marben after only a couple weeks. It’s Wellington West location in Toronto is definitely one that is starting to attract more and more attention. Just like on opening day, the patio and most of the indoor space was saturated with people out to have a great meal. However, the vibe is definitely more relaxed than that of the first night which definitely puts the diners at ease as... Read The Rest →

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