Posted in Toronto, Travel

Distillery District

 

One of my favorite parts of Toronto was the distillery district. What used to be one of the worlds biggest distillerys has become a fun and quirky part of Toronto. Filled with hip restaurants, little shops and art galleries this area is a top spot to visit while in the city. There is also a working distillery within the district. 

I just loved the architecture and all the little alleyways and art scattered throughout. 

I can’t wait to get back and explore this area again, I had just left st Lawrence market and was stuffed so I unfortunately didn’t get to test out any of the many restaurants and coffee shops. There were some pretty cool stores, one being an industrial home decor shop and I saw multiple shoe stores. They do offer Segway tours of the district if your into that sort of things, Walking the area was super easy though. 

I do highly recommend that this be on your list of Toronto must sees! 

Posted in Food, Toronto, Travel

Toronto Eats

First of all, I’m a pretty picky eater. Im always up to try things but unfortunately my mouth just rejects it all haha 

Toronto is known as being the most diverse city in the world, with less then 50% of actual Canadians. Making the city a huge melting pot of all sorts or ethnicitys, cooking styles and ingredients. 

While I haven’t been to Asia yet, walking thru one of torontos 3 China towns and Korea town transported me there. To me It seemed way more authentic then NYCs china town, but again I’ve never been so I’m just going off of my imagination and National Geographic. So many smells and sensations, from actual restaurants to the herb shops and markets. I hate to say I didn’t actually get to try any Asian dishes this trip but it’s at the top of my list for the next time! 

Another great Mecca of everything delicious, is the awesom St Lawrence market. I say it over and over but I really dislike the fact that we don’t have markets in the states.(I have a post all about the market, go check it out!) while there were an abundance of food options one particular restaurant was brought up in multiple conversations as well as other travel blogs, Paddingtons Home of the Oink. While they have many different options ranging from salads and soups to burgers and fish. Only one item was recommended by everyone, the peameal bacon sandwich. It’s peameal bacon, pork loin with a crispy crust on a kiser roll. Pretty tasty! I had cheese added and I also dipped it in the house honey mustard as recommended by the waitress. It came with coleslaw an amazing thick sliced pickle and perfectly crispy French fries. If in the market make sure you stop and grab one of these!!

My next food adventure was deserts, I’m a sugar fiend. Sooo I depend on Pinterest for almost everything haha especially for travel activities and food. My first stop for desert was Sweet Jesus, an ice cream joint. I’m a sucker for red velvet anything so if course as soon as I saw the red velvet milkshake I was sold. I hate to say though it was a bit anticlimactic after the blogs had hyped this place up😕 my milkshake was decent but nothing outstanding and it was a bit overpriced in my opinion. The raspberry sauce was what killed it for me and I like a thick milkshake and this was pretty melted but it was a fun little hangout spot and easy to find. 

My second day sweet treat was a beaver tail, another highly recommended Toronto treat. I stopped for one on the water front at a cute little red building that was half a gift shop and half a desert shop. 

I had never heard of a beaver tail before I started planning this trip. It’s a flattened fried pastry shaped like a beavers tail and you put whatever toppings you like on top. I chose the most Canadian topping they offered, maple 🍁 sauce and also some drizzled chocolate. 

Oh my gosh this was sooooooo good! It was hot, melted and ahhhhmazing! I want to bring this down south, people would love these. What made the whole experience was the view while enjoying the treat.

If you visit Toronto make sure to bring your appetite and your sense of adventure! I can’t wait to visit again and drive into their tremendous diversity and unique food options! 

Posted in Travel

Poutine, Amsterdam brew house 

So I tried poutine, it’s a Canadian favorite. It’s French fries, cheese curds then gravy. I don’t like gravy at all on anything so I wasn’t enthused to try it but it was recommended by literally everyone I asked for food suggestions. I hate to say it but I wasn’t a fan, although if you are a gravy lover, this is the dish for you! The Hamburger on the other hand was one of the best I’ve ever had though! The brew house is right on the water and has a great selection of food, from a basic American hamburger to seafood and specialty pizzas. A pretty large selection of beer hence the beer house name and most meals start at about $15. Toronto and Amsterdam are sister cities, the the bridge right next to the restaurant is named Amsterdam bridge and in Amsterdam they have a Toronto bridge. 

Posted in Travel

St Lawrence Market

First of all, I really hate that we don’t have markets like these in the states. At least none that I know of sooo if you have seen any let me know!! I absolutely love markets and they were pretty much my favorite places to visit in Europe and now Toronto as well. The little stalls of fresh veggies and cut meats and cheese are only part of the experience, the hustle and bustle of locals doing their shopping and the smells of super fresh breads and foods fill the market. The St Lawrence market is two floors of greatness, the downstairs not as exciting as the main but there was an amazing bakery where I bought some fresh still warm pastries😋  The upper or ground level is where it’s all going down, fresh fish gets flown in daily from both the Atlantic and pacific coasts of Canada. Butchers are waiting to cut the perfect meats and fresh local Canadian veggies by the bushel. If you ever visit Toronto, I highly recommend taking a stroll through the market, I highly suggest the pumpkin pastries! Also make sure you have cash, many of the shops do not accept card payment. 

Posted in Travel

Madrid and Toledo 

The first stop on my European adventure was Spain! We hit two cities, Madrid and beautiful Barcelona and we stayed two nights in each location. I have always been an extremely picky when it comes to hotels or just where I’m sleeping in general if it’s not my own cozy bed, so I was a tad bit nervous when it came to letting my friend have 100% control over lodging. But he did an amazing job, we stayed and a straight out of an IKEA showroom flat in Madrid and it was adorable! It was a little further from town then I think we would have liked but hey walking 15 miles a day during vacation is fun right?!! 😂 
Madrid: 
I wasn’t a huge fan of Madrid but I think that fact that the main reason the guys wanted to go there was for the Real Madrid futbol team and honestly I don’t get the sport. I think if I could see a live games it would change my opinion but until then it’s kinda boring. So we toured the stadium for what seemed like hours then we explored the city! 
We made our way to Plaza Mayor, it’s a giant square with little shops and cafes and there were all sorts of street performers and people watching and a must see, the plaza is right next to Mercado San Miguel. This place is a foodies paradise, tapas for everyone and just an enormous array of colorful foods and fresh seafood and drinks aplenty! I’m a crazy picky food person and eat like a child but I love seeing and experiencing new foods! 
We ended our first day at the most lovely park ever, I’m calling it the Central Park of Madrid. The park was massive so we only saw a small portion and I would someday like to come back and walk all the gardens and greens. The best part was the little lake, there was little paddle boats with cute couples on dates and swans and a little cafe on one side. There was a great monument with spaces to sit and watch the boaters, with bronze mermaid and lion statues. We sat for a little while and just enjoyed the sunshine and people and it was just a great ending to the day😊
The next day we took a day trip to the ancient city of Toledo. It was beautiful, super hot and beautiful, we toured a “castle” and just wandered through the cobble stone streets. The streets were so narrow that the few cars that we did see had stop and pull their mirrors in and still barely scraped through the streets! It was a lot of waking and lots of stairs but it was a great experience! 

Posted in Travel

Intro to Europe 2017

So I just literally walked in my door from an epic 20 day vacation in Europe!! I can’t wait to share and break down the entire trip for you but here is some background info and such!! So this trip has been in planning for 5/6 months or longer but I did no planning on my side haha my bestie is amazing and he did all the hard work! 
So before I left the states all I knew was that there were 5 of us going and a list of the countries we would be visiting. I can be such a control freak so just jumping in and blindly going along with this was way out of my comfort zone. But I’m so happy I did this because honestly it was the best trip ever and I would do it again in a heartbeat. 
So I live in South Carolina and all my travel companions Live in Costa Rica. So the first Step my vacation was to to fly to Costa Rica which until this trip was my most favorite place in the world. I still absolutely love Costa Rica and if you ever get the chance to go it’s on the most beautiful places on earth there’s just a little bit of everything in this little tiny country that’s only about the size of Rhode Island. 
I’m going to go further in depth about each city/country we explored in individual post but here is the list and stay tuned!! 
Madrid And Barcelona Spain, Zürich and Lucerne Switzerland, Rome Venice and Turin Italy, Prague Czech Republic, Berlin and Frankfurt Germany!