Summerlicious 2014, Part 3: P.F. Chang’s, Shops at Don Mills

For my third and final Summerlicious meal, I went to P.F. Chang’s at the Shops at Don Mills. I had been there once before, and really enjoyed it, so lol though I like to try new places, I wasn’t disappointed with the choice. It’s hard agreeing on a restaurant between 6 girls including one that’s 8 months pregnant!

The menu had great choices, something for everyone. And the best part is (and what makes them stand out) is that the Summerlicious offerings are all a part of the regular menu, so if you find something you love, you can get it again.

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To start, I went with the Buddha sticks. They were a fresh take on classic onion rings, and they were really good. The dipping sauce had some heat, but it all worked well. And the portion was huge! It was the same size as if you would order it off the menu. It could easily be shared with 3 or 4 people.

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For my entrée, I chose the red chilli shrimp. I was thinking of the sesame chicken because I tried it when I was there my first time and it’s so good, but I’m glad I went with the shrimp. The dish was spicy, but flavourful (as opposed to the spice for the sake of spice kind of heat). There were lots of chillies throughout, and a very generous serving of shrimp. The noodles were cooked perfectly, chewy and firm. I also tried the tofu that one of my friends got and it was really good as well. And again, a huge portion.

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To end, my preggo friend and I shared the Peanut Butter and Jam cake, and the chocolate cake. The PB&J cake was really good, light and fluffy…great way to end the meal. The chocolate cake was dense and fudgy, but after everything we had already eaten, I was pretty full so the PB&J won out for me (and I’m a chocolate lover!).

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We had such a great meal. The service was excellent, the food was hot and fresh and the best part? We all took leftovers home!

And with that, Summerlicious comes to a close for me. But you still have until the 20th to check it out!

Summerlicious 2014, Part 2: Oliver & Bonacini Cafe Grill, Bayview Village Mall

My second Summerlicious meal was this past Friday night at Oliver & Bonacini Café Grill at Bayview Village. Now, we had originally planned to go to Origin North – as I’ve said before, I like using Summerlicious as an opportunity to try new restaurants. And I’ve always wanted to try Origin North (I may have a slight crush on owner/MasterChef Canada Judge Claudio Aprile).

Unfortunately, they changed their menu after our reservations were already stem replacing the amazing sounding steak with a burger. I love a burger as much as the next girl, but when you have your heart set on a steak? A burger isn’t going to cut it. Apparently it was due to a supplier issue they knew of a couple of weeks before Summerlicious, and Origin North had asked the Summerlicious organizers to change the menu, which they didn’t I time. Anyway, it was O&B’s gain (and ours), and we were not at all disappointed!

The menu ($15 lunch, $25 dinner) had a really great variety to choose from:

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In addition to the Summerlicious food options, they had a featured drink menu. Fortunately they were sampling both. The first was the Passion Kiwi Sour (amaretto, Galliano, passion fruit kiwi lime, maraschino cherries.) It was a bit strong tasting for me, with a spicy, almost gingery kick. The other was the Sicilian Summer (gin, Campari, ginger, orange and grapefruit.) it was refreshing, and a good choice. I forgot to take the picture until after I had already started drinking it…oops!

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To start, I decided to try something new and different – the chilled melon soup. It was divine. I don’t know how else to describe it! It was sweet, and refreshing. It was topped with bottarga (cured, salted fish roe), olive oil and balsamic. The bottarga was a welcome salty, crunch addition.

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For the entree, I was torn between the veal and the sea bream. In the end, I went with the sea bream…excellent choice. The fish was cooked really well, although I wish the skin was crispy. The farrota primavera (faro with vegetables in tomato sauce) was a great accompaniment. I did get to try the chicken, as my sister got that…the polenta was amazing!

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For dessert, I chose the cheese plate. My sister chose the chocolate lava cake. We were surprised when all three desserts arrived, the third comliments of Chef Steven Kwon. All three were really good – I’m glad we didn’t miss out on any! In the end, my dessert own hands down…I’m pretty sure cheese always does!

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We had a really great meal with excellent service. I can’t wait to go back!

Summerlicious 2014, Part 1: Trios Bistro, Toronto Marriott Downtown Eaton Centre

I love Summerlicious and Winterlicious. It’s an opportunity to try new restaurants in a city that has way too many to choose from. I try not to go to the same restaurants I’ve already tried.

My first Summerlicious restaurant this year was Trios Bistro, in the Marriott by the Eaton Centre. I met with some former colleagues for lunch… Great way to spend a Friday lunch hour hours. And a great way to kickoff Summerlicious!

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It's All Grk Chicken Village Greek Pita Tzaziki

Restaurant Review: It’s All Grk (Dundas/Church)

I work in the Dundas and Jarvis area, and there aren’t a tons of places to grab a quick lunch right near my office. There are a few small places that are good, but I’ve found it hard to find fresh options. That’s where It’s All Grk comes in.

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Hello? Is this thing on?

Surprise, it still works!

I used to love writing my blog. Then I got busy, you know, having a baby and all. Well, now that baby is 13 months old, and I am back at work. Though I’m pretty tired at the end of the day (up at 5/5:30am to get myself ready then home at 5:30pm after picking the little guy up from daycare, then making dinner and all that), I find myself with more downtime (on the commute, after Lucas is in bed). More downtime means more time to write!

I’m back at Weight Watchers and have lost 20lbs since I started back last summer. But I’m not going to regularly blog about it. I’m still cooking, and eating at restaurants, so I’ll still post recipes and reviews. I’d like to also regularly feature what I’m watching. There is so much good TV on now, and I’m also using Netflix to play catch up on a lot that I’ve missed. I’m also going to post about baby/mom stuff because that is obviously a huge part of my life now. And there will be posts on what I’m doing (concerts, shopping, etc).

I’m going to aim to post something once a week…ambitious, perhaps, but I like to aim high. I have started to become more active on Twitter, and even joined the #YMCcommunity (the yummymummyclub.ca community). I love social media and want to be more involved again…though having a baby changes things, I still like to have something fun that is mine!

My thoughts on where I go, what I do and what I buy

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