Paramount Fine Foods is a popular Middle Eastern and Mediterranean chain of restaurants with several locations in Ontario. The Paramount Fine Foods Yorkville location opened in early 2015, and is the first full-service halal restaurant in the Yorkville area. The 4,500 square feet location offers a more upscale dining experience with an open concept kitchen. Paramount Fine Foods Yorkville offers an extensive menu of Middle-Eastern dishes, and now they have expanded even more so by adding six new items. 

I had the pleasure of attending a menu tasting, where my guest and I got to try some of the new menu items. Before dinner started, our server took our drink orders. I opted for the Mango/Strawberry Juice - a 50/50 blend of fresh mango and strawberry juices lightly sweetened with sugar, which was refreshing, and not overly sweet. 

 

My friend got the Paramount Special - layers of fresh strawberry and mango juices with mixed fruits, topped with fresh strawberry, kiwi, pineapple, almonds, crushed pistachio, ashta cream and honey. On paper, the drink sounded pretty busy with all of various ingredients, but the concoction of all of the ingredients created a rather delectable drink. 


To start, we were brought two large pieces of pita bread. The pita bread are freshly baked in the stone oven throughout the day, and served hot. It’s complimentary and served to all patrons.



One of the new starters is the mezza plate, which is perfect to be shared between two people. The Hummus, Moutabbal & Tabbouleh ($9.99) - equal portion of our famous hummus, moutabbal, and freshly prepared tabbouleh, was a great start to dinner. My favorite out of the three was the hummus, which had a nice cream texture without being runny.  

 

Did you know that Paramount Fine Foods also has an offshoot food truck? The Yalla Special ($9.99) - fries topped with chicken shawarma, garlic sauce, and tahini sauce, is one of the items available from the truck and is now available on Paramount Fine Foods Yorkville's new menu. This item is like a rendition of poutine (not a poutine though) but with more of a Mediterranean flair. The fries are topped with a generous portion of chicken shawarma, and drizzled with creamy tahini sauce.

 

Tabliyeh Saj Chicken Shawarma ($11.99 - shredded pieces of chicken grilled on a rotating spit wrapped to perfection with our freshly baked thin Saj bread with garlic sauce. Each platter is served Tabliyeh style (on a wooden board) with fries, pickles, turnips, and sauce.



The BBQ Shrimp Plate is the first seafood platter to be added onto Paramount Fine Foods' menu. So naturally, it was the item that I was looking forward the most to try. The BBQ Shrimp Plate ($16.49) - 2 skewers of marinated shrimp served with basmati rice, tomato garlic sauce, pickles, and turnips, arrived with several pieces of plump yet lightly-charred shrimp. I highly recommend getting this dish, as it’s well-priced for the large portion that you get, and was delightfully tasty


BBQ Chicken Wings ($7.49) - 3 pieces of whole marinated BBQ wings



Paramount Fine Foods Yorkville continues to offer an extensive choice of fresh, healthy, and high quality halal menu items. It's an ideal place to grab a quick bite at lunch, or have a dinner with family or friends. I stand by my earlier review, and believe that it's a great addition to the thriving cultural district of Yorkville. Paramount Fine Foods is open Sunday to Thurs from 8 am to 11 pm, and Fri and Sat from 8 am to 12 am. 



Address: 1250 Bay St, Toronto,ON, M5R 2B1


Social Media:

Website: http://www.paramountfinefoods.com/
Twitter:  https://twitter.com/paramountfoods

Disclaimer: The food provided in this post was complimentary. However, all of the opinions expressed in this review are of my own.

Paramount Fine Foods Yorkville

by on Saturday, July 02, 2016
Paramount Fine Foods  is a popular Middle Eastern and Mediterranean chain of restaurants with several locations in Ontario. The Paramount F...
Melitta is a Germany-based company selling coffee, and coffee makers worldwide. The company was named after Melitta Bentz (1873–1950) who founded the company in 1908. Many retailers today carry Melitta's premium whole bean coffee products including Metro, Loblaws, Longo's, Food Basics, Wal-Mart, Shopper's Drug Mart, and more.



A couple of weeks ago, I was invited to attend Melitta Media Breakfast held at Maman Toronto. Maman Toronto is a lovely bakery/cafe located on the mezzanine of First Canadian Place offering a taste of Southern France. The breakfast event was an intimate with a small group of media personnel and bloggers. We were also joined by three representatives from Melitta; Donna Gray, David Viola, Ian Buckingham. During the breakfast, we learned thoroughly about Melitta's history, and their coffee products. Overall, I thought that it was an engaging event, where we learned a lot, and got a taste of Melitta Deluxe European Roast coffee. The Deluxe European Roast is a traditional blend roasted a little darker resulting in a medium dark roast with bold European taste. It had a good aroma, and definitely something that I would drink in the morning to start my day.



We were also treated to coffee-flavoured pastries made with Melitta Coffee European Roast Ground that were exclusively made for the media breakfast. It was served on a three-tier platter consisting of raisin bread, almond croissant, madeleine with Melitta coffee, and éclair with Melitta coffee. I liked that the coffee-infused confections enhanced the flavors of the pastries without being overwhelmingly strong or bitter.


Éclair with Melitta coffee


Granola Cups - Greek yogurt, granola, dried fruits, assorted nuts, and seasonal fresh berries 


Croque Maman - ham, cheese and béchamel sauce


Thank you to Melitta and energi PR for having me, and hosting a great event.


Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/melittacanada/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/melittaca
Website: http://www.melitta.ca/

Disclaimer: The food provided in this post was complimentary. However, all of the opinions expressed in this review are of my own.

Situated in the heart of the Financial District, The Drake’s Drake One Fifty, recently launched their weekend brunch. Chef de Cuisine, Jon Pong, and his team has created a menu to celebrate the season’s light flavors and bountiful produce that support many local purveyors and farmers. The menu includes brunch favorites like eggs benedict, pancakes, skillet French toast, and steak & eggs. Last weekend, I had the pleasure of attending an intimate tasting where guests got to sample the new brunch menu, and completed a hands-on cocktail masterclass (Caesar) with their head mixologist.


 

Drake One Fifty uses locally sourced products daily, and this hasn't changed with their new brunch menu. They source bacon and pork from Perth Pork, beef from Cumbrae’s, walnuts from 100km Foods Inc., cheese from The Cheese Boutique, Ocean Wise sustainable seafood, seasonal Ontario produce and even foraged mushrooms. Quality dishes are of the utmost importance at Drake One Fifty, and this is evident in the dishes that are served to their customers.

The team at Drake One Fifty has also curated a cocktail program that perfectly complemented the new brunch menu including the popular Classic Drake Caesar.

Photo Credit: Drake One Fifty
The Blueberry Scones ($11) - clotted cream & jam was a delicious start to a morning brunch. The scones are freshly baked in-house every morning, and delightfully soft.



I opted for the Omelette ($16) - Bulgarian feta, grilled shiitake furikake, baguette crostin, as my choice of main course, and I am glad that I did. The omelette was a modern take on the brunch favorite, but they did add a unique spin to it by adding Bulgarian feta.



We ended brunch with Pancakes ($15) - miso banana caramel, chocolate cream as our dessert. It was quite the sweet treat!



 Hot Smoked Salmon Benedict ($17) - dill hollandaise, salmon roe, toasted sesame


Photo Credit: Drake One Fifty
 Drake Breakfast ($17) - skillet, corn bread, breakfast sausage bacon, 2 eggs, chicharrón, BBQ bean puree 


Photo Credit: Drake One Fifty


Brunch is available every Saturday and Sunday from 11 am to 3 pm at Drake One Fifty.

Address: 150 York St, Toronto, ON M5H 3S5

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/DrakeOneFifty
Instagram: http://instagram.com/thedrakehotel
Twitter: https://twitter.com/TheDrakeHotel/
Website: http://www.drakeonefifty.ca/dining
 
Disclaimer: The food provided in this post was complimentary. However, all of the opinions expressed in this review are of my own.
 
Drake One Fifty Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato
Wine Academy (IG @wineacademyto) is a new private members club in the heart of the Financial District. I had the pleasure of attending their launch party where we were treated to passed canapés with some wines. Guests also got the chance to have a tour of the wine cellar, which was pretty imposing.



The Wine Academy is located underground on the corner of Bay and Richmond. It's a place where wine aficionados and casual drinkers alike have the opportunity to taste and store their wine collection in a sprawling multi-storied, uber-chic, and ultra-urban 6000+ square foot space. The space itself was beautifully decorated with wood, and the perfect space for private events, business meetings, or social functions. Additionally, the location that now houses Wine Academy used to be a gym, and the foundation of the old interior was basically kept. However, the designers spruced it up to create a more industrial yet classic interior. The natural finishes are mixed with some metals and wood to create a rather warm environment; one that is great to relax in.

** All photography of the interior are taken by Jimmy Li courtesy of Wine Academy **



Wine Academy came from the idea of creating a space where friends, clients and colleagues who appreciate dining out, entertaining and being social could come together,” said Aaron Joseph Bear Robe, Managing Partner and Executive Chef atWine Academy. “And, since food and wine are two of the most ubiquitous enjoyments life has to offer, The Wine Academy aimed to create a social club that celebrates just that.  (source: http://www.wineacademy.ca/)

A personal Wine Academy membership costs $1000.00 annually, and the monthly cost of a wine storage unit is $150. The wine cellar is safe, and secure with multi-level security check to ensure that the wines are safely stored (integrated HVAC system controls temperature and humidity uniformly).



Lastly, it's not all about the wines, as Wine Academy also offers a selection of locally sourced internationally inspired dishes. The kitchen is headed by Executive Chef Aaron Joseph Bear Robe (Keriwa Cafe) who brings forth a menu highlighting various flavors.

Book a tour (available Monday-Friday from 8 am to 9 pm) today to check out the facility. 


Address: 67 Richmond St W, Toronto, ON M5H 1Z5

Social Media
 

Disclaimer: The food provided in this post was complimentary. However, all of the opinions expressed in this review are of my own.


Wine Academy Toronto

by on Thursday, June 23, 2016
Wine Academy ( IG @wineacademyto ) is a new private members club in the heart of the Financial District. I had the pleasure of attending t...
Maman Toronto is a European bakery/cafe located on the mezzanine of First Canadian Place offering a taste of Southern France. They offer an assortment of baked goods, coffee drinks, sandwiches, cocktails, and salads. However, did you know that they also have an outdoor patio? I had the pleasure of attending their patio launch about two weeks ago where guests indulged on passed canapés, and cocktails while enjoying the warm weather.


** All photography taken by PHOTOPHILCRO - Phil Crozier courtesy of Maman Toronto **


 

Maman Toronto's patio is sizable, as it can seat 36 people, and overlooks the busy street of King St W. It's a great place to enjoy some delicious cocktails while indulging on classic French pastries. They actually have a great selection of freshly-baked pastries like croissants, tartelette, chouquette, cookies that are all baked in-house. Maman Toronto also offers a cinq-as-sept bar program (5 pm to 7 pm) with a carefully curated wine and cocktail list that perfectly complements the tapas dishes they served. You can read my blog on their tapas menu here. All of this can be enjoyed on the outdoor patio until the place is closed.

 
  

Although, the patio does not take reservations (first-come, first served), it is available for corporate and social functions. Given its vicinity to the Financial District, Maman Toronto's patio is a great place to visit during lunch or after work with friends and co-workers. 

Maman Toronto is open Monday (7 am to 5 pm), Tuesday to Friday (7 am to 5 pm, and Saturday for brunch (10 am – 3 pm).

** All photography below taken by Joey Salmingo ** 



Le Vert

Ingredients:

3Ž4 oz Lime Juice
1Ž2 oz Green Chartreuse
1Ž2 oz Cucumber Syrup*
1 1Ž2 oz Tromba Tequila Blanco
Matcha salt**
Lemon Wedge
Blend one cucumber and 12 oz of simple syrup. Filter through sieve several times
Combine fine salt with 1 tsp of matcha powder

Method:

Rub one side of the glass with the lemon wedge
Roll glass into the match salt
In a shaker, add lime juice, cucumber syrup, Chartreuse and tequila
Shake for 15 seconds
Strain into a glass with 2-3 ice cubes and serve!



Ti Punch

Ingredients:

3Ž4 oz Lime Juice
1Ž4 oz Simple Syrup
1Ž4 Benedictine Liquor
1Ž2 oz Domaine de Canton
1 3Ž4 oz Plantation Barbados Rum
Optional: Dehydrated Lime Slice – 1 piece

Method:

In a shaker combine all liquid ingredients.
Shake for 15 seconds
Double strain into glass
Garnish with dehydrated lime and serve!

Address: 100 King St W, Toronto, ON M5X 2A2 (First Canadian Place)

Social Media

Disclaimer: The food provided in this post was complimentary. However, all of the opinions expressed in this review are of my own.

Maman Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Maman Toronto's Patio Launch

by on Friday, June 17, 2016
Maman Toronto  is a European bakery/cafe located on the mezzanine of First Canadian Place offering a taste of Southern France. They offer ...