Eater's Digest: Toronto 3

Previously on Adam Riff™:

September 2015
peoples eatery / my market bakery / dailo / kekou gelato house / banh mi boys / lucky red / r&d / bar fancy / chantecler / electric mud / grand electric / smoke's burritorie / sweet jesus / momofuku daishō / otto's berlin döner / nomnomnom crepes / little nicky's coffee / jelly modern doughnuts / rasa / junked food co. / alo / seventh sister bakery / fresco's fish and chips / moonbeam coffee / burrito boyz / kanpai snack bar

Fried Watermelon (Dailo)
bean sprouts, basil leaves, pickled melon rind, pork floss

Yeah… Not a fan of hot watermelon. Interesting mix of Chinese, Thai, and Vietnamese flavours, though.

Mapo "Doufu" Halloumi (Dailo)
montforte halloumi, ground pork, grilled scallions, black bean chili sauce, fried chillies, garlic

Mapo tofu with cheese in place of tofu.

Roasted Oolong Tea Gelato (Kekou Gelato House)
Whiskey Green Tea Gelato (Kekou Gelato House)

Asian gelato? Asian gelato.


Nacho Koreano (Lucky Red)
pork dumpling, kimchi salsa

Each chip is a deep-fried pork dumpling.

Duck Gravy Poutine (Lucky Red)
kimchi, duck skin crackling

Ram n' Cheese (Lucky Red)
gruyere, aged cheddar, panko

I wasn't sure what this was. A variation on a croque monsieur? A: Mac and cheese with ramen in place of macaroni.

S'mores Bao (Lucky Red)

Shiitake Polenta Fries (R&D)
mushroom ketchup

True 8 Toasties (R&D)
tomato confit, 5-spice goat cheese, hk iconic vinegar, candied yuzu
—Like bruschetta.

Poutine (R&D)
mapo style bean curd

Banana Split (R&D)
crispy banana fritter; sour cherry, condensed milk and peanut butter, malted milk ice creams; coconut cream, macerated strawberries

While I dug the mushroom ketchup and malted milk ice cream, this was some disappointing neo-Asian fare. The potatoes in the poutine were off-puttingly firm.


Red Star Punch (R&D)
oolong infused beefeater gin, hawthorn, mandarin, lemon, shanghai rhubarb bitters

Oolong-infused gin. Okay…

5 Spice Dark 'n Stormy Cocktail (Dailo)
chinese 5 spice infused gosling's rum, lime, ginger beer

Ichi-Go Ichi-E (Dailo)
nori infused bowmore 12 whisky, lillet, roasted barley tea

Chinese five spice-infused rum? Nori-infused whisky?

510 Caesar (R&D)
black garlic and chinese mushroom infused absolut vodka, r&d chili sauce, hoisin infused worcestershire, lapsang tincture, mott's clamato

Black garlic and chinese mushroom-infused vodka with hoisin-infused Worcestershire sauce!

Sichuan Maple Old Fashioned (R&D)
roast duck infused lot no. 40 whisky, shishito bitters, sichuan maple syrup, orange zest


The vodka in the 510 Caesar is now infused with black truffle too.

Trying too hard.

Veal and Lamb Döner (Otto's Berlin Döner)

Fish and Chips – Extra Crisp Batter (Fresco's Fish and Chips)
Fish battered in Miss Vickie's sea salt and malt vinegar chips.

Buttermilk Biscuits (Momofuku Daishō)
black pepper butter, chili honey

The best thing that I have ever eaten at one of David Chang's restaurants is…biscuits.

Everything Bun (Momofuku Daishō)
smoked whitefish, crème fraiche, horseradish, red onion, fried capers

Yet another Asian spin on a Jewish deli bagel.

Nanaimo Bar Doughnut (Jelly Modern Doughnuts)
raised doughnut, dark chocolate ganache dip, nanaimo bar fill, nanaimo crust crumble

I wanted to love it, Nanaimo bar fiend that I am, but it just tasted like a chocolate doughnut.

Mini Doughnuts (Little Nicky's Coffee)
Made fresh-to-order and covered in a blend of powdered sugar and cinnamon.

The Chopped Salad (Rasa)
vegetables, quinoa, jalapeño feta, harissa chickpeas

Caprese Fish (Rasa)
albacore tuna, tomato confit, basil sauce, dehydrated olive, crispy padano

Both spoke softly but carried a big stick.

"Popcorn Chicken" (Rasa)
= sweetbreads.

Whack Mac (Junked Food Co.)
white chocolate, brie, mozzarella, doritos, sage, macaroni, kentucky ketchup

I braced for the worst, but it didn't taste like anything.

Pulled Pork Smash (Junked Food Co.)
lettuce, tomato, onion, cheddar, olives, jalapeño, sour cream, chili sauce, dr. pepper pulled pork, jolly rancher bbq sauce, slaw, pickle

I wasn't prepared for a base of COOL RANCH Doritos, and its Dr. Pepper pulled pork + Jolly Rancher BBQ sauce was too sweet for me.

Frozen Doughnut (Junked Food Co.)
With random toppings. Mine was topped with Cinnamon Toast Crunch, Nerds, and chocolate drizzle.

Crispy Crunch and Nutella Pizza (Junked Food Co.)

Presidential Sweet Specialty Soft Serve Cone (Sweet Jesus)
sour green apple, caramel sauce, salted pretzel, toffee bits, vanilla ice cream

The queue for Sweet Jesus always stretched out the door when I passed by.

Low-Fat Superhero Ice Cream (Some place in the Eaton Centre)

Play-Doh Man.

Alo is reportedly the best restaurant in Toronto, and the best new restaurant in Canada. Tasting menu only.

As I did not have a reservation, the maître d' refused to let me try the tasting menu, so I sat down at the bar and ordered the entire bar menu.

The bar menu was hit or miss, highlighted by:

Complimentary Bar Snack (Alo)
Various nuts (peanuts, almonds, et cetera) candied and each variety seasoned with a different spice (fennel, coriander, et cetera), then tossed with popcorn, puffed wild rice, quinoa, and buckwheat in glucose, and baked.

Tartare (Alo)
jalapeño, radishes

and a stainless steel spoon-straw in my drink. All drinks should be served with stainless steel straws.

Taiwanese Fried Chicken (Kanpai Snack Bar)
deep-fried chicken smothered in taiwanese spices with a mix of fresh toppings

This fried chicken takes a while to arrive, but it is totally worth the wait. The crispiest fried chicken that I have ever eaten.

Taipei Tater Slaw (Kanpai Snack Bar)
julienned potato tossed in a spicy szechuan peppercorn dressing

An odd, but addictive raw potato dish.

Wow Bao (Kanpai Snack Bar)
deep fried bao bullion with yin yang of spicy nutella and pop rock condensed milk


Piggie Smalls (Kanpai Snack Bar)
small chunks of pork belly, deep fried and tossed with secret spices

Edamame Said Knock You Out (Kanpai Snack Bar)
flash fried edamame tossed with sweet soy, butter, and garlic chips

Skee-Lo Salad (Kanpai Snack Bar)
shrimp and avocado in a taiwanese honey vinaigrette, topped with crushed peanuts

Colonel Tso's Chicken and Waffle (R&D)
hong kong egg waffle, kung pao sauce, sichuan maple syrup

Corndog Muffins (The Dock Ellis Sports Bar)
cheese, andouille sausage, honey, smokey mustard

Tipsy Oreos (Junked Food Co.)
Alcohol-infused cookies.

(Chippy's Fish and Chips)


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