The Market

One of the best things about living in Toronto is good ol’ Market Street, downtown. The newly revamped street offers Torontonians a diverse selection of some of the best “tastes of Market Street”. For the next few days, Toronto hosts Marketlicious – a multicultural array of delicious pre-set lunch menus for everyone to enjoy! Just south of King Station, the beautiful heritage buildings give the city one of its most defining characteristics. The delicious selections of food and drinks include:

Balzac’s Coffee. They have grown from a coffee stand in Toronto to nine locations across Southern Ontario, and are among the town’s favourite European inspired cafes. 

Barsa Taberna. Ranked one of Toronto’s best new restaurants of 2014, Barsa delivers a combination of classic spanish atmosphere and modern tapas.

Bringing a nouveau approach to Indian cuisine, Bindia Indian Bistro focuses on fresh quality ingredients without compromising the sumptuous flavours that are the essence of Indian food.

Evolution Food Co. is a fantastic place to visit if you want to explore ‘food you can feel good about’. Using only fresh produce, they are known for their scrumptious and totally guilt free fruit smoothies and their signature salads.

If you’re in the mood for a nautical themed meal, check out Market Street Catch. Enjoy a casual lunch on their patio with some of the freshest ingredients you’ve ever tried! 

Last but not least, everyones favourite Italian guilty pleasures are available at Pastizza – a true European menu complete with their own in-house wine list. The home-cooked comfort food and artisan cocktails are definitely must try combinations for this summer.

Be sure to head downtown by April 30th to try some of these amazing creations!

Summer is so close we can taste it! So why not get ready for summer with testing a few awesome local beers and ciders?

One of the best parts of summer is hopping from patio to patio sipping this and sampling that… and there are so many options around the city of Toronto.

Starting off with Brickworks Cider, batch 1904. This was their first ever cider with handpicked heritage apples and sent to their Ciderhouse in Toronto. They are also currently releasing a new cider specifically made for Toronto, called Queen 501 – named after the actual 501 streetcar. This vintage inspired theme has already received a ton of excitement, including the launch party on May 28th. This fun packed event will take place on 2 streetcars and cruise downtown until guests and media reach SPiN at 461 King St W.

Another fantastic local beer is good ol’ Steamwhistle. Available at most pubs in Toronto, this classic Canadian taste is one of the most refreshing Premium Pilsners around. You can also book a tour of the Steamwhistle brewery located at The Roundhouse – 255 Bremner Blvd, for a taste and a closer look into its creation. 

If you’re in the mood for a Europian beer experience, be sure to check out Bier Markt at 600 King St W. With over 100 beers and menu samples, this is definitely a place to chill with friends this summer. They offer live music and a wide selection of “refermented” beers! You can even watch the chef explain the menu and the “bier” process: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cPeMLfWmnLg

As for another great Canadian flavour… a new CPA in town, Old Tomorrow Beer, has a full-bodied taste that is not too bitter, making it a memorable and unique brew that is very versatile for any occasion. Originally created after Sir John A. McDonald, Old Tomorrow Beer is has been collecting very positive reviews around cities like Kingston, Ottawa, and of course Toronto. They are to planning to expand into other provinces and hopes to eventually become a national craft brand! – OldTomorrow.com 

Don’t forget about the Amsterdam Brewhouse down on 245 Queens Quay West! Shake the chokehold of mid-July humidity by planting yourself on the ginormous patio and letting a cold pint and the lake breeze work their magic. Sip from a list of limited weekly releases like the Darjeeling Wit (brewed with spices and tea leaves) or the Testify (Encore) brett pale ale. They also offer an array of sharable foods for pairing, like pizzas, lobster rolls, burgers, and salads! You can also join them for a free tour and tasting!

Let the summer music festivities begin!

This summer Toronto will be playing host once again to some of the biggest acts in music, and is gearing up for some fun filled memories featuring such artists as Deadmau5, Arkells, and Sam Smith.

Canadian Music Week is approaching, and each year we wonder if it can get any better than the year before. From May 1st through to the 10th, various venues around the GTA will be gearing up for some talented performances. Be sure to check out places such as The Cadillac Lounge, The Drake Hotel, Horseshoe Tavern, Hard Rock Cafe, Painted Lady etc. Some big acts that will be seen at this year’s CMW is Joey Bada$$, Death Cab for Cutie, The Jesus and Mary Chain and more. Bud Light Digital Dreams will also be taking over The Flats at Ontario Place this summer from June 27th – 28th. They are offering payment plans for the months of April and May, which includes general admission as well as VIP packages. The shoreline setting creates a wonderful experience for your digital dreams. This year’s lineup features artists like Armin Van Buuren, All Gone Pete Tong, and Zedd!

Following these festivals, the month of July will also Toronto will welcome Sam Smith, Kendrick Lamar, Alt-J etc. From the 24th-26th Burl’s Creek Event Grounds, Oro-Medonte will play host to Way Home festival, which is more than just music. It focuses on bringing people together through music, art, and film, and is gearing up for a fun filled couple of days surrounded by love and good vibrations. If you’re looking for more indie rock and roll vibes this summer, you’re going to want to check out  Field Trip  festival at Fort York and Garrison Common from June 6th-7th. The atmosphere of a dive bar with the talent of the ACC will want to make you dance around like a fool and throw your fists in the air. Single day tickets or 2 day tickets are available, and some big acts this year include Alabama Shakes, My Morning Jacket, Arkells, and De La Soul. This “field trip” will take you on a fun journey of mess hall eating, games (including day camp for kids), and the most creative art boutiques in the city. Listening to great bands while enjoying a BBQ? Why not!

Finally, probably one of the largest Toronto music festivals, VELD, is a perfect way to end the summer. On August 1st and 2nd, you Downsview Park will play host to crowds of energetic fans waiting to hear the awesome sounds of Deadmau5, Hardwell, and more. Be careful though, it gets crowded!

This year’s MTV Awards proved that Amy Schumer is hilarious, Zac Efron is hott, and Channing Tatum is hilarious AND hott. From all the twerking to all the dirrty jokes, this year’s show definitely deserved an R rating. The super sexiness of the show was what made it fun, and Amy’s first hosting gig was a success. The frat boys from Neighbours, Zac Efron and Dave Franco, rein-acted one of the funniest scenes of the film. Together they rocked their best Robert Deniro impressions, just as they did in the film.

One of the highlights of the evening was the cast of The Avengers joining Robert Downey Jr. on stage and kneeling down to watch him accept the Generation Award. The 50 year old spoke about the amazing people in his life, and how grateful he is – specifically the rest of the Avengers cast.

The best kiss award went to the adorable couple from Fault in our Stars, Shailene Woodley and Ansel Elgort. Sadly, there was no rein action of the kiss like when Rachel Mcadams and Ryan Gosling heated up the stage in 2012. Unfortunately Shailene was left to accept the award alone, while Ansel later sent her and fans a video message. 

The show ended with a hilarious Fault in our Stars spoof, where Amy Schumer channeled Woodley’s character… and finished the night off with a Hunger Games spoof with Amy and Elizabeth Banks as Effie Trinket. If you missed it, watch the full show here -> MTV Awards 2015 

 Until next year, MTV Awards!

This past week was exciting for many different reasons…

Toronto Fashion Week dominated David Pecaut Square, The Raptors beat The Lakers 94-83, celebrities shined at the 2015 ANOKHI Media Awards… and the best hot dogs in town, Fancy Franks, just got a lot closer to you! 

The gourmet hot dog restaurant opened their third location in central downtown Toronto, right at Queen & Spadina, just up the street from one of their other locations (College & Spadina). It’s safe to say they are slowly taking over the city, one gourmet hot dog at a time!

Guests and media were invited to celebrate the opening this past Tuesday, where the owner, Angelos Economopoulos, closed down the store for this exclusive (and delicious) event. Those in attendance were able to sample some of Fancy Frank’s wildest creations, including their most popular menu item ‘Franky Goes to Buffalo’ – which has chicken bacon, buffalo wing sauce, blue cheese dressing, topped off with celery and carrots. Guests also sampled new poutines, including ‘The Porker’ (ground chorizo, bacon, grilled onions, squeakycurds, gravy and scallions), which quickly became a crowd favorite.

The ‘Franko Y Huevos’ (photo above) also made its menu debut, and the feedback was overwhelming. This unique recipe is made up of scrambled egg, chopped hot dog, ground chorizo, sirracha grilled peppers, onions, jalapenos and cayenne. And, thanks to Pommies (who sponsored the event), there was plenty of Dry Cider to wash down the spiciness!

Not only does a Fancy Franks hot dog have the best “snap”, a fresh batch of Fancy Franks made to order mini donuts is just the cherry on top of your gourmet order. The celebration included a “make your own mini donuts” station, where guests could get creative with powdered sugar, cinnamon, and different types of glaze. Go check out 453 Queen St. West and experience this awesomeness for yourself, open Monday-Saturday 11AM-1AM, and Sunday 11AM-11PM.