The two of us shared orders of xiao long bao (pork dumplings), scallion pancakes and steamed shrimp dumplings. I thought the first two items were excellent, but the skin of the shrimp dumplings seemed dry to me. This was more than enough food for the both of us, and we left stuffed!
Later in the day, Tourism Toronto hosted the TBEX Opening Night Party at the beautiful Roy Thomson Hall.
Toronto is well-known for being an extremely diverse city with 50 percent of its inhabitants being foreign-born. This diversity was showcased during the Opening Night Party. There were different food stations set up around the Hall, each representing a different ethnic neighborhood in Toronto. Chinatown was one of the "neighborhoods" that I stopped by to get myself a cute take-out box of lo mein and dim sum!
A highlight of the evening was Ninutik Maple's presence! They were on hand to create some yummy treats. Maple syrup was ladled onto a bed of ice to chill and then a cube of cheese was wrapped in the frozen maple syrup. Below is a video of the process.
There was also a pretty dessert table with lots of little sweet delights to sample.
And there was even a gummy bear carving station. Now, that is something I had never seen before!
At the end of the evening, we were treated to a surprise performance by Canadian musician, Serena Ryder.
The next night, we attended Expedia's Viewing Party, which was held at Shopsy's on Centre Island. Since Centre Island is an island, we had to take a short 15-minute ferry ride to the venue. This gave us some awesome views of the Toronto waterfront!
We got lots of fun foods during the event from build your own burgers to sno-cones and cotton candy.
On the ferry ride back to Toronto, we also got to see the skyline all lite up. I love the different reflections of color on the water. So pretty!
There wasn't an evening event on Sunday, so that gave us another chance to try out some local restaurants. We decided on Japanese since we had been eating some pretty heavy meals. We found Yuzu No Hana to be very close to our hotel as well as highly rated on Yelp.
Rebecca and I shared the tuna avocado tartare. I also ordered a salmon handroll, yellowtail nigiri and tenzaru soba. Yes, that was a lot of food, but so yummy!
I also had the not-so-brilliant idea that we couldn't leave Toronto without having tried poutine. Since Smoke's Poutinerie was only a couple of doors away, I convinced sister to make one last stop for the evening with me. If you don't know what poutine is, it is a Canadian dish, originating from Quebec, of french fries topped with gravy and cheese curds. I had to try it but found it super salty and not very appetizing.
On our last day in Toronto, we met up with Professor Wong, one of my oldest friends/former neighbor/high school buddy and current Toronto resident. We had lunch at Wanda's Pie in the Sky in Kensington Market.
You might think I'm crazy for saying this after looking at everything I ate, but I wish I could have tried more food and explored more of the neighborhoods! Next time!
421 Spadina Avenue
Toronto, ON M5T 2G6
Yuzu No Hana
Wanda's Pie in the Sky
287 Augusta Avenue
Toronto, ON M5T 2M2