By Melody Wren
News Americas, TORONTO, Canada, Fri. Sept. 2, 2011: I recently met with ChowBella founder, Trina Hendry for a culinary tour of Queen Street West in Toronto, Canada.
The walk that takes you through the hippest area of Toronto to taste anything from olive oil to Poutine, runs Sunday at brunch o-clock, lasts about three hours and can be booked online. The tour, which takes two-and-a-half to three hours, is totally suitable for non-walkers, as the distance covered is only 1 km at the most.
The tour runs only on Sundays, all year round, and is accessible. For just $49, you can cover the price of the tour and all the samples. It’s up to you to bring an empty stomach and good walking shoes.
This excursion is a unique opportunity to discover the neighborhood from a culinary point of view, and by touring, participants are able to take in authentic experiences not available to the general public, and treated like VIPS for the few hours.
Our sampling began at The Spice Trader and The Olive Pit, popular amongst chefs and foodies. With bread chunks dipped into oils and vinegars, we tasted our way through Northern and Southern Spain, France, Lebanon, Italy and Portugal. Similar to a wine tasting, comments were made on smell, color and taste. It was fascinating to hear other people’s descriptions of the tastes: “grassy, very light, fresh, herbaceous.”
The tour continued on to Nadège, a chic new Patisserie, stark and modern, with unusual flavor combinations. We enjoyed a decadent sample of a Macaron (make mine salted carmel, please). The Parisian pastries on display were artistic and unbelievably gorgeous. Still licking our lips for every last morsel of yummy goodness, we walked a few steps to TeaLish, a modern, independently-owned tea boutique, where we sipped samples while Leslie, the manager regaled us with basic information on tea, including brewing instructions.
Part of the tour includes an order of any type of tea, hot or cold to sip while we ambled to the next sweet stop that was Dlish Cupcakes.
Featuring a daily menu with nine different nine cupcakes , each cupcake is handcrafted from fresh, local natural ingredients, the cakes matching the frosting. No hydrogenated oils here, just pure sweet goodness. Red Velvet is their best seller, so that is what I went for.
OMG amazingly fabulous…. had to refrain from cramming the entire thing in my mouth. Delight Fair Trade Chocolate was the next stop where we tasted chocolate and organic ice cream which was a personal favorite, as there were in season flavor choices including Honey Lavender, Spiced Plum and Niagara Apricot, and Blue Cheese, all fresh taste explosions. We walked downstairs and indulged in Canadian artisanal cheese in Le Caveau.
The grand finale was the furthest and the heaviest sampling at Smoke’s Poutine. I had never tasted Poutine before, so warily ordered the “Vegetarian Deluxe” with fresh green peas and ‘shrooms’ – hold the onions. As a Poutine newbie, I dug in with much trepidation, and was surprised at how delicious it was. Smoke’s is due to open another location in Guelph soon, and I believe I may now be one of their customers!
For additional information or to book, visit the ChowBella web site at www.chowbellaconcierge.com/tours. All tours are subject to availability and are limited to a maximum of eight people
The cost of the tour includes all food samples and is $49 per person plus applicable taxes and tip (418 words)
For more information, visit: www.SeeTorontoNow.com
Check out Melody’s website: www.melodywren.com