Sunday, 30 September 2012


156 Front Street, Toronto (416) 596-2240

We used to come to Canyon Creek for their bacon wrapped scallop appetizers and grilled chicken caesar salads.  This time we thought we would go the whole way and get a full meal.  It was a very busy night in the city, with a Yankee game letting out and Nuite Blanche getting started, so we were lucky to get seated at all.  We haven't been here in a while and tried some new appetizers namely asian nachos and fried calamari.  The asian nachos were delicious and very large compared to others we have tried elsewhere.  The calamari were tasty and the chipotle aoli was spicy. They also serve a bread basket here with a honey butter that is absolutely delicious.  
Three of us had the grilled chicken dinner, one with a baked potato and two with rice pilaf. They were accompanied by nice salads.  One of us had the prime rib on a bun with a kind of dip au juice and he really liked it.  The chicken however was over grilled, very dry and absolutely tasteless, while the accompanying vegetables were kind of skimpy and bland.
If I were to come again I would stick to the great appetizers and burgers and skip the full meals - especially the chicken.
The service was very efficient and professional. The restaurant is very comfortable.  If they could only improve their mains they would be competitive with the Keg.

large asian nachos

comfortable interior and seating

nice Californian 
bread with honey butter
accompanying caesar salad
grilled chicken dinner with baked potato
fried calamari

grilled chicken with rice pilaf

Saturday, 29 September 2012


5785 Victoria St. Niagara Falls On (905) 356-3844

While wandering the Niagara Clifton street menagerie of noise we came upon a patio that was quite busy and saw some very nice dishes being served, so we decided to return again and try this restaurant.  I had heard that their pizza was famous in the area so we tried it.  It was excellent.  There is nothing like a wood oven pizza.  It was definitely not an assembly line operation.  The service was quick and efficient. We ordered a pizza that included pepperoni, mushrooms, bacon and and cheese.  It was loaded with toppings and very filling for a wood oven pizza. The crust was not too thin and was a good size for two people.  It went well with a glass of wine.  In observing other patrons I noticed generous plates of gnocchi, veal parmigiana, and pastas.  
This is a rather large restaurant and is usually very busy.  It is one of the best restaurants in the Falls and I will definitely return again to try more on the menu.

Antica Pizzeria & Ristorante on Urbanspoon 

Sunday, 23 September 2012

IL FORNELLO (King St.) 3.5 out of 5

214 King Street West (416) 977-2855  Hours Open 11:30 Mon -Fri , 12:00 Sat -Sun

We have been here a number of times and have not been disappointed.  This time we came just before the peak hours. It can get very busy here, because it is next to the Princess of Wales Theatre in the Entertainment District.  Despite the fact it is quite a large restaurant, it fills up very quickly after 6 pm and it is recommended to have reservations.  Since we were early, we were served very efficiently and quickly.  We began, as we always do here, with their olive bowl of marinated black and green olives and crostini, which we shared (a delicious and inexpensive appetizer).  We ordered a nice Ripasso wine, at a reasonable price, and decided to try the salmon dinner.  It was delicious and extremely hot when it arrived (I like my fish hot).  It was a generous portion of fish and was perfectly cooked.  It was accompanied by a lemon garlic dipping sauce (served on the side).  The rest of the plate consisted of a generous portion of  French beans and fingerling potatoes.

We completed the meal with desert.  My wife had a slice of cheesecake which was soft and delicious.  I had the raspberry chocolate tartuffo with whipped cream.  We also had a cappuccino and espresso.

although it is a large restaurant it fills quickly
olive bowl with garlic, rapini, and crostini
Ripasso wine and olives, a great combination of flavours
grilled salmon, French beans,  and fingerling potatoes
raspberry, chocolate tartuffo with whipped cream
Food for Pleasure Toronto restaurants Il Fornello on Urbanspoon

Tuesday, 18 September 2012

WAYNE GRETZKY'S 3 out of 5

99 Blue Jays Way (416) 348-0099  Hours 11:30 to 1:00 or 2:00

Wayne Gretky's is a landmark in Toronto.  It is located at 99 Blue Jays Way.  I have been here many times and found it especially buzzing on a night when the Leafs are playing.  We recently went here for a light dinner and found it has gone down hill over the years.  We started with calamari friti that came with a tomato based dipping sauce, and were not worth the price.  They tasted almost like popcorn chicken.  I had a grilled chicken caesar salad and found it tasty but not especially satisfying.  My sons both had wraps and found them passable but nothing special.  The service was slow and the food was quite expensive for the quality.  For a sports bar there are plenty more in Toronto that are much better quality and value.

It is the ambiance of the place and it's hockey history that is the attraction and the food is only passable.

Wayne Gretzky's on Urbanspoon

Sunday, 16 September 2012


21 Baldwin Street (416) 595-6277

The Sambuca grill is located in the row of restaurants called Bladwin Village, on Baldwin Street east of Spadina.  It has a cozy inside section and a good size patio to eat al fresco.  I have been here before for a Winterlicious price fix a couple of years ago and it was quite good.  Recently, my wife and I decided to try it.  It was a warm September evening so we sat on the patio.  We were the only ones on the patio.  There were only about five couples inside and it was a Saturday evening.  Some of the other restaurants around us were a lot busier.
We began by ordering calamari friti, which we order every time we see it on the menu.  They came steaming hot with a small bowl of jalapeno aoli for dipping and a lemon wedge.  They were just a little rubbery.  We both ordered the same pasta special - it was a linguini in a tomato sauce with several shrimp, grilled chicken pieces, and green beans.  
To our surprise the pasta did not arrive with bread of any sort.  I have never been to an Italian restaurant that did not provide bread with an entree.  We just got a bowl of pasta.  The amount was substantial but the sauce was just ordinary and neither of us liked it - there was just something unusual about it's taste.  Fortunately, the wine helped the meal go down.  The service was timely, but the waitress lacked any personality or enthusiasm.  All in all I don't think we will return anytime soon, there are much better Italian restaurants in this city.

Sambuca Grill on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, 12 September 2012


33 King Street West Dundas On (905) 628-2995 Hours 11:00 am to close

The Collins is a Dundas institution, it has a laid back atmosphere and pretty good pub food.  The restaurant/pub includes a spacious interior, with lots of televisions, a large U shaped bar, a spacious quiet patio and a large room downstairs for parties. It is located in the heart of beautiful Dundas and has been here since 1841.  It has a varied menu from pasta to ribs to nachos.
Their fish and chips are good and reasonably priced, as are most of their items. I frequently come for one of my favourite salads - their Thai salad. It consists of various greens covered in grilled chicken and other ingredients that mesh together nicely and include a spicy Thai sauce on the side. I noticed 3 patrons around me were ordering the same salad. Servers are friendly and have a lot of ground to cover - it's a long walk to the kitchen. The patrons are mostly from the surrounding areas.
Worth a visit if you are in the area.
Large bar area
Thai Chicken salad
Collin's Brewhouse on Urbanspoon

Tuesday, 11 September 2012


Went to the Artisano Bakery Cafe on Brant Street in Burlington for lunch.  It is brand new and very sleek inside, though a little sterile.  They serve a variety of foods for breakfast, lunch and light dinners.  They serve freshly made soups, salads, classic sandwiches and grilled panini.  They also bake fresh focaccia, ciabatta and baguettes and make great desserts including cookies, cakes, biscotti, muffins and pies and they seem to be constantly baking in the kitchen here.  
 I had their special which included a half salad or soup and a half panini ($9.99).  The half caesar salad had shaved parmesian cheese and great croutons and real bacon.  The grilled panini was delicious with melted cheese and sliced turkey.  It was a filling meal which also included bottomless coffee or soft drinks.

My son had a full panini and mixed leaf salad. Unfortunately there was no room for dessert.
half turkey with melted mozzarella and half salad
full panini with side salad

Monday, 10 September 2012


We have been coming here on and off for years and recently decided to check in on Pizza Rustica.  It hasn't changed a bit in years.  We shared a cajun calamari fritti (lightly dusted, fried and served with lemon roasted garlic aoli and franks hot sauce for dipping) they were yummy.  We then shared a California Pizza (vegetarian) covered with three cheese creme sauce, roasted garlic, mozzarella, broccoli, sliced roma tomatoes, red onions, mushrooms, fresh peppers and pitted black olives.  We find their pizzas extremely light on the stomach very tasty and easily shared.
We had a half litre of Valpolicella wine and completed the meal with a capuccino.  There is a wonderful covered patio that overlooks Blue Jay Way and the Soho hotel for people watching.  The interior is comfortable though a little small.  It is located just down the street from the Rogers Centre and is great before or after a game or after shopping on Queen Street.

cajun calamari fritti  

California Pizza

Pizza Rustica on Urbanspoon

nice patio for people watching

Saturday, 8 September 2012

LION ON THE BEACH 3 out of 5

This restaurant is located in the beaches on Queen Street east.  It has a pub like atmosphere and menu, with a fairly large patio.  I had a chicken pot pie with mashed and vegetables here.  It was filling and tasty and reasonably priced.  My son had a wrap that was not very good in his opinion - he had better.  The patio was nice and shady on a hot day, however there were too many dogs around and near it (some were whining).  The beaches restaurants are not noted for their cuisine so you can't be picky here.  All in all it was not bad pub food, but the server was run off her feet and somehow managed the crowd on the patio quite well.  On my way to the washroom (they always seem to be in the basement) I noticed that the interior of the restaurant was in serious need of cleaning and updating.  Beach Bird across the street is a much better choice.

Food for Pleasure Toronto restaurants

Lion on the Beach on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, 5 September 2012


This restaurant is part of the Niagara on the Lake Golf Public Golf Course.  It is located at the end of the old town of Niagara on the Lake, on the escarpment overlooking Lake Ontario, and has a clear view of Old Fort Niagara on the American side.  The menu is varied from a selection of breakfast choices during breakfast hours, to sandwiches and wraps, to full dinners. The prices are reasonable for Niagara on the Lake.

We had the special of breaded perch with fries and coleslaw for 17 dollars along with a 1/2 litre of House VQA wine for about 20 dollars.  There is an extensive list of local Niagara wines from a number of local sources.  They also serve a variety of cocktails, beer and martinis.

The view is the main attraction here and the patio really depends on the weather.  There is however a tented section if it gets windy. There is also a very nice section indoors that serves the same menu items.

Niagara on the Lake Golf Course on Urbanspoon