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Food/Wine

5 Cultural Eats at the Canadian National Exhibition

August 22, 2016 by  

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The Canadian National Exhibition marks the unofficial end of summer in Toronto. For the past 138 years, millions have flocked to what is Canada’s largest fair. In fact, this year up to 1.6 million people are expected to enjoy everything the fair has to offer. And that includes the food of course. Let’s face it. You don’t go to the CNE to eat salads. You go for the rides and to eat food you normally wouldn’t eat (or would you?). And every year, the good people who feed you at Toronto’s annual exhibition come up with ideas to create dishes that are more outrageous than the year before. This year is no exception. The 2016 edition of the CNE is  is loaded with dishes that you can’t believe exist, much less understand how they were in even conceived. Here are my five must-eats at this years CNE. Get your Instagram’s ready and forget the diet.

Bug Dog @ The Bug Bistro

These guys have a “bug-worthy” menu. Their main attraction is the Bug Dog, a hormone-free beef frank seasoned with crispy mustard crickets. IMG_3395.JPG

Spam Double Down @ Miami Press

For those who remember what spam was before email, this…

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Foco do Chão For Al Fresco Drinks and Fun in Manhattan

August 12, 2016 by  

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It’s great when you discover a delightful restaurant near a museum, because what makes for a better NYC outing than dinner and a museum?  MOMA has long been my favorite museum, and I recently dined at a delicious spot directly across from its 53rd Street entrance: Foco do Chão. Foco has been a staple in the Brazilian Steakhouse scene for a while, famous for its churrascaria experience, which offers a never-ending parade of fire-roasted, high-quality meats presented table side.  But as a vegetarian, what really excited me was their new outdoor dining experience, dubbed The Patio at Bar Fogo, and menu, which is both affordably priced for Midtown and loaded with delicious selections, friendly for a variety of dietary restrictions.  Don’t worry carnivores, there’s plenty of meat on the outdoor menu to quell your cravings, too! The Patio is perfect for al fresco dining while watching pedestrians stroll by to and from their offices, tourists go in and out of the museum, and local neighborhood folks walking their pint sized pooches.  Unlike so many other outdoor dining spaces in Manhattan, this one doesn’t feel cramped–the tables are large and have comfortable chairs, and are spaced far enough away from each other…

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Raise a Glass & Toast at Davio’s Near Grand Central

August 2, 2016 by  

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Meeting a friend or colleague near Grand Central Station can be tricky.  Yes, it’s a super convenient spot to meet for many, because of all the trains and subway lines, but it’s also in a weird part of town.  While there are a few nice options to drink within Grand Central itself, they certainly don’t lend themselves to every situation.  Case in point: The Oyster Bar is loud and crowded and it’s impossible to carry on any kind of conversation, while The Campbell Apartment will set you back a week’s worth of groceries for one round of drinks. That’s whey I’m delighted to share with you a spot I cam across which is right in the area, classy, quiet, and perfect for both entertaining a client or catching up with a friend in from Westchester (hence the train station;-)  Davio’s is located right on 45th and Lexington, and offers a full service bar, terrace with a beautiful breeze (and view!), and of course, delicious Italian fare. I recently attended a wine tasting event there, and snapped a few photos for you to get the gist of this perfect Midtown East spot.  Cheers…

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Eat Creative & Organic Fare at Carmel-by-the-Sea’s Basil

August 1, 2016 by  

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If you read us regularly, you know we’re huge fans of farm-to-table dining, organic food, restaurants who source from local farms and chefs and establishment owners who pay attention to where food comes from. We care and applaud restaurants who take the time to think through their menus, buy high quality organic ingredients and support nearby communities and farmers.

Meet one of our new favorite chefs: Soerke Peters, who’s the co-owner and main chef at Basil Seasonal Dining just off the main drag in Carmel-by-the-Sea California. Nestled in the middle of an alley off the main shopping street (get there early to view for creative window shopping and cafes), this cute and casual, but authentic and local gem features locally grown produce and organic ingredients. A certified Green European style restaurant, Basil boasts a seasonally rotating menu, which also features gluten-free and vegan alternatives. They also have an elegantly curated list of local wines to complement their fresh, wild and sustainable seafood and grass-fed beef, which have been raised on family-owned ranches.

“It’s never wrong to to do the right thing…..go green.” — Chef Soerke Peters

The place has a whole lotta charm, first and foremost because it’s tiny…

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Eat Your Way Through Canada’s Longest Running Market in Toronto

August 1, 2016 by  

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Frankly, if you love outdoor markets where you can pick up fresh, delicious food then #UnionSummer should be one of your top Toronto destinations this summer.   unnamed
Photo courtesy: Jason Gordon for Toronto Union   Located at the foot of the city in front of Union Station, #UnionSummer features 20 food vendors that give both locals and visitors an amazing variety of food to choose from; food that’s reflective of the different neighbourhoods, cultures and ethnicities of the city. It’s a true melting pot of people and food and a clear representation of not only what Toronto is all about but what makes the city truly unique. Only in its second year, it runs from June 27  until Sept. 5 making it the longest running outdoor market in the country.   unnamed-2
Photo courtesy: Jason Gordon for Toronto Union unnamed-1
Photo courtesy: Jason Gordon for Toronto Union   The idea behind it was to give the roughly 250,000 people who pass through Union Station every day a reason to stay. Since construction began in 2009, people have been put off sticking around the old hub. There was very little about it that made people want to stay in the area and…

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Oh So Luscious Umbrian Wines: 6 Delicious Finds

July 30, 2016 by  

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Since we live in northern California, we drink a lot of red Napa and Sonoma wines on a regular basis — there are so many deals to be had and overflow bins where you can great Cabs and Zins, that it’s no surprising that dabbling in Chilean, Argentinian, Australian, South Africa, Italian wines and beyond are more a rarity than the status quo. Truth be told however and I’ve written about this before, you can drink better wine outside northern California for a more reasonable price. In other words, I’m not suggesting that all wine outside of Napa and Sonoma are better wines, but certainly the price points in California compared to the incredible values I get on the road cannot be compared. I sampled over-the-top big rich and bold reds that had me at hello, all under $15-18 range in Hungary that easily tasted like $40-50 bottles. The same holds true in South Africa and Argentina and some wines in Australia. It always astonishes me and moreso annoys me that to get a oh so delish glass of red wine in a nice bar or restaurant in the San Francisco Bay Area, you’re looking at…

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Hyatt Carmel Highlands Offers Sweeping Views of Big Sur

July 24, 2016 by  

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I’m typically not a fan of chains, even high end ones, largely because I often feel that there’s very few unique characteristics to a property. Of course, I have been proven wrong on this view point a number of times, most notably at one of our favorite Ritz Carlton properties: Dove Mountain in Arizona, which we reviewed last year and has a big wellness focus, which is very integral to WBTW’s focus: Transformative Travel. Earlier this month, we had an opportunity to experience the Hyatt Carmel  Highlands property in Carmel California, a lovely oasis nestled into a mountain and surrounded by trees, all while also boasting epic views of Big Sur and the Pacific Coast. What we love most about this Hyatt is its natural surroundings and the fact that it looks out onto the ocean — a mix of large hotel amenities with the charm of a unique hotel getaway. This lovely oceanfront hotel is 3.2 miles from Carmel River State Beach and less than ten miles from Cannery Row, which for those who haven’t been, is a must do for shopaholics. Also here are great cafes and restaurants as well as beautiful ocean walks.

What We Loved

The natural wood burning…

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The Foodie Guide to Chattanooga Tennessee

July 19, 2016 by  

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Let’s face it – if you’re a foodie, regardless of your preferences, you can’t deny that the South has so many unique specialties and dishes to make your mouth water. On our trip across country last year, one of our favorite restaurant picks was located in Tennessee as was a memorable dish we nearly didn’t order: waffles with deep fried chicken, blueberry honey, blue cheese and yogurt. Oh so delish and to die for is the best way to sum up this artery hardening experience! Returning to Tennessee after months of a very low carb diet was nerve wracking. After all, I put on a lot of weight after several weeks of cross country restaurant reviews – read my write-up about how I took it off again and how I kept it off.  
So, what do you do if low carb dining is an integral part of your lifestyle and you’re a foodie? And, what do you do when faced with a fabulous restaurant you’re dying to try that has a lot of high carb dishes on the menu? Of course, you must try some of them (how much…

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