Tag Archives: Vegetarian Friendly

Nyood Restaurant – Totonto, Canada

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Nyood Restaurant

(1) 416 466-1888
1096 Queen St West
Toronto, ON M6J 1H9, Canada

www.nyood.ca

OPEN HOURS:
DINNER
6:00 pm – 10:00pm    Wednesdays  –  Thursday
6:00 pm – 11:00pm    Friday -Saturdays
BRUNCH
11:00 am – 3:00pm    Saturdays – Sunday

Beautiful contemporary design with a dash of an austere industrial look – striped marble counter tops decorated, attractive wall textures and custom lighting by design firm Commute Home –   belies the warmth found with the staff and food.  One special detail we loved was they presented us the bill inside a book.  Nyood is quite stylish and still retains charm – worth checking it out.

Executive chef Ariel Copland, created a menu with a little of everything. We went for brunch and had a very pleasant experience – with food and excellent service; our bartender was very attentive and offer great tips about the city.  He even helped me work through some morning crankiness with an espresso and a smile!

During our visit the the ambiance was quite chill and relaxed, but we hear the restaurant takes a very different direction at night.  Word is it becomes a full on party scene – and with the plethora of open space, one could easily envision a chic crowd getting down!

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Nyood_-014Spanish Flatbread  sunny-side up eggs, roast tomato, avocado, sour cream, cilantro, jalapeño

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Nyood_-012Egg white omelet hen of the woods mushrooms, rapini, cashews, gruyère

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Mercado de San Juan Arcos de Bélen – Mexico City

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Mercado de San Juan Arcos de Bélen

Arcos de Belem y Lopez
Centro 06010, México, D.F.

Mexico city has numerous food markets and some of them share the same name, which makes it a bit difficult for the visitor to get to the desired destinations.  The Mercado de San Juan Arcos de Belén,  is different from the famous Mercado de San Juan – which was our destination.  Since we were never able to get a set address and following a multitude of different directions, we found ourselves at here.  Funny enough, it was after a few days later that we realizes it was a different Mercado de San Juan!!!

Fortunately our surprise detour brought us to roughly 125 square meters and 400 stales of fruits, vegetables, prepared foods, nuts & seeds, meats, chiles, moles, juices and so on.  At first the view of hanging strings with colorful plastic bags and signs everywhere advertising all the wonders of a traditional Mexican food market was a bit overwhelming.

After walking the through all the stimulating aisles of market, we decided to eat at Gloria y Familia Taco Placero located in stalls 191, 208 & 209.  Her selection of prepared foods grilled vegetables, rices, stewed huitlacoche, salsas, salads, tamales, beans and soups, seduced our senses each time we passed by.  It was also appeared as the most veggie friendly place with its series of ceramic trays displaying all kinds of delectables.

Our lunch really consisted of food that could be used as vehicles for all the different hot sauces.  Gloria had at least 10 different kind of freshly made salsas and hot sauces in her booth; all delicious and full of happiness!  So much so, that at the end, we asked here to fill our empty water bottles to carry these bursting flavors with us.

We ate grilled nopal cactus, sated onions, yellow rice and vegetable rice, many herbs native to Mexico, as well as stuffed poblano chiles, tamal (a corn based dough wrapped in a leaf, which is steamed or boiled) and elote.

After lunch, we stopped at a few stalls to buy moles and chiles. Our favorite stall being Moles Sarita (55182235) stalls 194 & 195.  Here we stuffed our bags with a generous sampler of moles and chiles.  In general every place we inquired the people seemed friendly and prompt to answer our many questions regarding names, origins and usages on all the wonderful foods.

Mercado-de-San-Juan_-003Fruit salad with topped with grated cheese
Mercado-de-San-Juan_-008Foreground – chiles cereza ; Background – chiles mora (measures about 4 cm in length)
Mercado-de-San-Juan_-007Chile de arbol – very spicy!!
Mercado-de-San-Juan_-013Familia Taco Placero stall 191, 208 & 209
Mercado-de-San-Juan_-012Familia Taco Placero stall 191, 208 & 209
Mercado-de-San-Juan_-016aFamilia Taco Placero stall 191, 208 & 209
Mercado-de-San-Juan_-014Scrambled eggs with nopal

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Mercado-de-San-Juan_-006Moles Sarita, stalls 194 & 195
Mercado-de-San-Juan_-005 Moles Sarita, stalls 194 & 195

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Ursa Restaurant – Toronto, Canada

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Ursa Restaurant

(1) 416 536-8963
924 Queen St West
Toronto, ON M6J 1G9, Canada

www.ursa-restaurant.com

OPEN HOURS:
6:00 pm – 11:00pm    Daily

Our favorite restaurant in Toronto by far, Ursa takes a modernist approach to the local, farm-to-table, blah blah blah.  Chef Nathan utilizes techniques such as sous vide, dehydration and fast freezing combined with high quality, guilt free ingredients to create something truly world class.

Reservations are highly recommended for tables, but if you are a bar-diner, Ursa is a great location for it.  We were supremely grateful and happy to have met the head bar tender and exceptional mixologist Robin Goodfellow (beware his bionic hearing!).  True to his namesake, his drinks were magical and easily could have featured in a Midsummer Night’s Dream.

Among his many whimsical potions, Robin introduced us to the shrub, also known as drinking vinegar. These infused vinegars originated in the 17th century as medicinal tonics, and are completely addictive.

Unfortunately, we did not have a chance to go a second time, but we will deferentially go back. Friends have since dined there and have agreed 100% that Ursa is the best of Toronto.

Here is our meal.  Just know that the aesthetic was completely secondary to the flavor and texture  🙂

Ursa-001To accompany our wonderful cocktails we ordered the dehydrated raw bread with cultured butter.
Ursa-011Raw kona kampachi with hazelnut apple compote burdock and maltodextrin love

 

Ursa-007Georgian bay white grilled fish with confit leeks and potato, cottail aebleskiver (danish doughnut) and lingonberry bourbon bernaise.

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The Living Sprout Salad was a melange of colours, textures and play.  The plate was more a landscape design then a salad.  Each vegetable root or flower was carefully placed to be admired, be they dehydrated, cooked or marinated.  On the side was a tray cradeling a small garden box of sprouts and a pair of Japanese gardening scissors.  You cut the sprouts yourself and garnished the salad along with the most amazing verijus dressing.

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House made tofu with crispy edamame, yuba (tofu skin), okara, dashi foam with enoki and shimeji mushrrooms
Ursa-012Hazelnut bon bon cannelle decorated with pink lady apple chips

 

Ursa-014Athol Brose cocktail; blended scotch, oatmeal, honey, egg white and nutmeg.
A meal on it’s own!  I had one for dessert!
Ursa-019Robin Goodfellow, mixologist supreme