Monday, June 30, 2014

[Food Tour] Savour Toronto - Kensington Krawl

Company: Savour Toronto
Food Tour: Kensington Krawl


I got the chance to go on my first food tour by winning a pair of tickets through Hailo Toronto. Savour Toronto provides food tours, culinary experiences and culinary events for Torontonians and tourists since 2013. The tickets I received were for the Kensington Krawl. This tour focuses on finding hidden gems and on the history of Kensington Market. There are a total of 13 stops, seven of which are food stops and the rest are for quick history lessons.

The first place we started off was at Cheese Magic. We got to sample four types of cheese, which I really loved. After, we got to visit Thomas Lavers Cannery & Deli. It's a gourmet shop with many canned preserves, sauces, and pickled items. They also sell fresh pasta and deli sandwiches. My boyfriend loved the fresh ginger beer there. We got to sample sandwiches and pickled food. The sandwiches were yummy!

Thomas Lavers Cannery & Deli

Next, we headed to Sanagan's Meat Locker and learned more about this upscale butcher shop. We tried various sliced meats. Everything in the shop is locally sourced from Ontario farms. Shortly after, we had a couple of historic stops to learn more about Kensington.

Sanagan's Meat Locker

Next was the Kensington Lodge. It is a historical building that has been renovated into a bar. I got to try the Antigravity, which is an American Blonde Ale from Flying Monkeys. My boyfriend ordered the Maple Whiskey Sour (hopefully I remembered the name correctly because I didn't write it down), which I thought was absolutely delicious. It didn't taste like alcohol but more like a fruity beverage, which I really liked.

Kensington Lodge, Antigravity (left) and Maple Whiskey Sour (Right)

Once we were done with the patio and alcoholic drinks, we headed over to Akram's Shoppe. It's a store that specializes in Middle Eastern cuisine and sells a variety of grocery items for customers to take home. There was an assortment of sweets and each person on the tour got to try two pieces of their choice. I personally want to go back if I am ever craving shawarma or falafel because it is super cheap there ($2-$3)!

Akram's Shoppe

Once we satisfied our sweet tooth, we headed over to Carlos' House of Spice. Perfect for anyone who loves to add herbs and spices to their cooking. Each person got a bag of dried mango slices (all made fresh). My boyfriend absolutely loved them and finished them as quickly as he had received them. Once we got out of there, we took a walk around Kensington and our guides went over four historical spots. Our last stop, and my favourite, was at Jelly Modern Doughnuts. I always wanted to try it out, but knowing it being a gourmet doughnut shop, I always skipped out because of the price. But alas! This food tour allowed each person a doughnut of their choice. I went for the large S'mores doughnut and my boyfriend went for large Coconut doughnut. Mine was delicious! I can't wait to go back because I got a coupon for a free doughnut and coffee!

Jelly Modern Doughnut



My favourite food stops were: Cheese Magic, Thomas Lavers Cannery & Deli, Kensington Lodge, and Jelly Modern Donuts. My boyfriend favourite stop was Thomas Lavers Cannery & Deli since the ginger beer sample really surprised him by how delicious it was. He also quite enjoyed the sandwiches as well.

The Kensington Krawl is $55+HST that lasts for three hours. Asides from the samples, the price includes for a full size alcoholic drink and a gourmet doughnut. I think the price is a bit expensive, but then again I've never been on a food tour before so I cannot compare it with others. I think it's a good tour to go on if you are a tourist and would like to learn more about one of Toronto's many diverse communities. Also perfect for the foodie out there who would like to discover some new favourite shops.

Saturday, June 28, 2014

[Giveaway] Organic Matcha Green Tea Powder

Hello! I am hosting my very first giveaway on this blog! In my previous post, I reviewed Kiss Me Organic's Organic Matcha Green Tea Powder. It is perfect for all the matcha tea lovers out there. To give back to you guys, I will be giving away one bag! The contest is open to US and Canadian residents only and will end on Saturday, July 12th at 11:59 PM EST. Good luck!

Monday, June 23, 2014

[Product Review] Kiss Me Organics - Organic Matcha Green Tea Powder

Company: Kiss Me Organics


Product: Organic Matcha Green Tea Powder
Vegan/Vegetarian/Gluten-Free?: Yes to all

KissMe Matcha Green Latte

Matcha Orange Cocktail

Kiss Me Organics asked if I wanted to try their Organic Matcha Green Tea Powder. I had an unpleasant experience with a Matcha Latte a long time ago, but I wanted to give it another chance to redeem itself. I knew there are a lot of health benefits to matcha. A few of the things highlighted on the packaging are: all day energy, metabolism boost, increase focus, improve skin health, and 137x antioxidants of brewed green tea. I don't know about you, but I like to have all of the above!

The Organic Matcha Green Tea Powder is exclusively sold through Amazon. Once purchased, you will receive a complimentary recipe e-book with different ways to incorporate matcha into your daily life. The e-book has over 50 recipes using matcha anywhere from smoothies to breakfast. When I skimmed through the e-book, I realized I didn't have most of the ingredients. Therefore, I was only able to make two things: the KissMe Matcha Green Latte and the Matcha Orange Cocktail.

The KissMe Matcha Green Latte was very easy to make. It only needed milk, water, and agave syrup! Since I didn't have agave syrup on hand, I replaced it with honey. Sadly my drink looked nothing like the photo in the recipe e-book because I had zero skills with creating foam and latte art. It was a nice latte drink nonetheless, and my favourite to drink almost everyday as of late. The Matcha Orange Cocktail was just as easy. It required ice, sugar, hot water, and orange juice. I didn't have any Tropicana so I used Sun Della's Citrus Punch. For the cocktail, you should adjust the matcha or orange juice depending on which taste you prefer more of. I liked tasting the matcha more so I adjusted the amount the second time I made it. Plus, the cocktail is a great alternative for having a cold summer drink!

Overall, I think the Organic Matcha Green Tea Powder is a great product! I like the taste and I love how there are so many different ways to use it. Hopefully in the near future I will tackle another recipe once I have time to (I will update here once I do!).

You can purchase here:

Thank you to Kiss Me Organics for the Organic Matcha Green Tea Powder provided for this review! :)

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Aroma Espresso Bar (Bay and Dundas)

Cafe: Aroma Espresso Bar
Address: 562 Bay St.
Phone Number: 416-792-7760
Store Hours: Mon-Fri 7 AM - 9 PM, Sat-Sun 8 AM - 9 PM

Study Appropriate?: Yes
Wi-Fi?: Yes
Stamp Cards?: No



Drinks - Soy/Almond/Lactose-Free Options?: Yes to all

Food - Vegan/Vegetarian/Gluten-Free Options?: Yes to all 

See the full menu at

Regular Ice Lemon-Mint, $3.70; Personal Steak Sandwich (replaced meat with tofu) $5.30

Personal Mediterranean Sandwich, $4.50

Personal Halumi Grilled Cheese Sandwich, $6

Personal Portobello Sandwich, $4.95

Small Matcha Green Tea Latte, $3.95

Medium White Aroma Coffee, $3.85

Large Ice Aroma, $4.70

Irish Cream Latte with Bailey's $7.55; Brownie, $2.75; Bureka Treat, $5.45

Medium Berry Iced Tea, $2.75; Power Breakfast Combo, $11.45

Whole Steak Sandwich, $10.90; Heinken, $5.95; Mill St. Original Organic, $5.95; Chocolate Croissant, $2.70; Date Pastry, $2.45


Drink of Choice: Ice Aroma, $4.30

I was contacted by Aroma to check out their new tofu alternative food options. All the meat in the sandwiches now can be replaced with tofu for free. Being a fan of Aroma Espresso Bar already, I excitedly agreed. Since I'm currently a Ryerson student, the closest store location (excluding the one in the Eaton Centre) is at Bay and Dundas. I decided to take two separate trips to this location.

To start off with the location, it was pretty packed when I came in for the first time around 5 PM. The first thing I did was scour for outlets because I needed to get some work done. Unfortunately, there were very few outlets available and since it was full, I was unable to get to one. I actually debated for five minutes if I should stay at this location or trek elsewhere, just so I could have access to an outlet. However, it was a long day and I decided to stay. To my pleasant surprise, I ran into an old co-worker who was working for Aroma! We had some nice chit-chat while I was being indecisive with my order. I ended up getting the Steak sandwich and had the meat be replaced with tofu. All meat in the sandwiches can be replaced with tofu for free. Along with my order I chose the Ice Lemon-Mint, which I thought was perfect for the hot weather.

I definitely recommend the Steak (replaced with Tofu option) sandwich. It was rich with healthy and delicious ingredients, perfect for vegetarians. Although it was delicious, I had a feeling I would love the original steak version more. For the Ice Lemon-Mint, I initially enjoyed it. Then I started to realize how sour it was. It had an interesting taste because of the lemon and mint combination. I can't really describe the taste except how you would expect lemon and mint to taste like together. It's a refreshing drink to have once in awhile but if you have low tolerance for anything sour, you should avoid it.

The second trip I took, I decided to try out the Ice Aroma drink and the Mediterranean sandwich. The Mediterranean sandwich was from their vegetarian sandwich menu. It's a simple and wholesome sandwich. I prefer the Steak sandwich because I like having more flavours and meat. However, I still think it's a great option for vegetarians. My favourite item out of these two trips was definitely the Ice Aroma! If you love Starbucks Frappuccino, you should try the Ice Aroma. It's similar to the Coffee Frappuccino. I have a sweet tooth so the Ice Aroma was a perfect pick. I hope to one day try their other iced drinks, especially the Ice Aroma Float! 

Overall, I think Aroma Espresso Bar is a great alternative to most coffee chains. They have a great selection of healthy menu options at affordable prices. Their cafes are growing rapidly across Toronto so you will probably find one near you soon! The Bay and Dundas location is great for not only Ryerson students but for anyone in the general area to grab lunch at or to have an Ice Aroma with a couple of friends. I think you should definitely stop by in the summer for a sweet and cool drink.  

Thank you to Aroma Espresso Bar for the Aroma Cash so I could purchase the drinks and food for this review!

Aroma Espresso Bar on Urbanspoon