Tromba Tequila

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Slurp Noodlefest takes over The Great Hall next month

Toronto is in the midst of a serious ramen fixation, so it’s only fitting that the latest food event from the trend-savvy Food Truck Eats producers is Slurp Noodlefest, which takes place at The Great Hall on March 3. The roster of chefs includes pop-up regulars like Adam Hynam-Smith of El Gastrónomo Vagabundo and Nick Liu of the still-not-open GwaiLo, as well as representatives from more rarified kitchens, like Splendido’s Victor Barry and Richmond Station’s Carl Heinrich. Expect various takes on pho, ramen and other assorted noodle dishes, all priced in the $5–$10 range (there’s also a $10 entry fee). Amsterdam Brewery, Tromba Tequila and the buzzy new Dillon’s Distillery from Niagara will be serving the libations. Buy tickets »

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Food Events

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Weekly Eater: Toronto food events for October 15 to 21

Monday October 15

  • Monday Night Dinners at Local Kitchen and Wine Bar: Every Monday night, Local Kitchen serves up a $40 prix fixe menu of Italian fare with half-price wine bottles and no corkage fee. 1710 Queen St. W., 416-534-6700. Find out more »
  • 86’D with Ivy Knight: This week, a battle for doughnut glory. Watch the folks from Glory Hole Doughnuts, Dough by Rachelle, The Sweet Escape, Paulette’s and more put forth their best fried dough. The Drake, 1150 Queen St. W., 416-531-5042. Find out more »
  • Piola’s Monday Night Mixer: Piola’s weekly aperitivo Italiano, with cocktail and beer specials and complimentary snacks. 1165 Queen St. W., 416-477-4652. Find out more »
  • Burger Mondays: Enjoy $5 burgers and $5 pints on Mondays, 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Gladstone Melody Bar. Gladstone Hotel, 1214 Queen St. W., 416-531-4635. Find out more »
  • Mediterranean Flare: Marni Wasserman demonstrates a variety of Mediterranean-inspired vegetarian dishes. The menu includes lentil-cumin soup, quinoa tabbouleh, roasted eggplant dip, spelt pitas, baked falafel, and homemade hummus. Marni’s Kitchen, 26 Lauderdale Dr., 647-477-8131. Find out more »
  • The “Seoul” of Korea: Chef Carrie Rau shows how to make some of Korea’s national dishes, including jap chae, glass noodle salad, bulgogi, skewered marinated beef, mandu dumplings filled with pork and beef, and hoddeok (a sweet pancake with brown sugar and nuts). Dish Cooking Studio, 390 Dupont St., 416-920-5559. Find out more » 
  • Workshop—Kids in the Kitchen: A series to help children aged 9-12 learn to cook, develop recipes and understand healthy food choices, run by holistic nutritionist Kate Leinweber. Week one kicks off with prep skills, super-power salads and healthy sweet snacks. The Depanneur, 1033 College St., 416-828-1990. Find out more »
  • Fizzie Bevvies—The Art of Home-Fermented Pop: Love pop, but not the lengthy list of ingredients on the can? This workshop will demonstrate how to make your own fizzy, home-fermented drinks packed with probiotics and other health-supporting products of fermentation. The Depanneur, 1033 College St., 416-828-1990. Find out more »

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Drinks

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Our top six picks for Ontario Craft Beer Week


The third annual Ontario Craft Beer Week kicks off on Father’s Day (i.e., this Sunday) with 29 breweries participating in 29 communities throughout the province, and hundreds of events, including large-scale tastings, food pairings, special one-off releases, collaborations between brewers and Craft Beer 101 classes. After the jump, we assemble a six-pack of great Toronto events.

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Food Events

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The Stop Night Market fundraiser to take over Honest Ed’s Alley

Even if scores of buzzing foodies crowding into the narrow alleyway at Honest Ed’s is not your idea of a fun night out, you should still check out the all-flashing, day-glo, carny-tastic website that The Stop has set up for the Night Market, a $50-a-pop fundraiser featuring food and drink served out of custom-made stalls. The stacked list of vendors includes both Generals (Brockton and County), Cowbell, Delica, GwaiLo, Paulette’s Chicken and Donuts, SupiCucu, The Grove, Ursa, Yours Truly, Grace, Woodlot and many more, and beverages will be provided by Great Lakes Brewery, Lake of Bays Brewing, Muskoka Brewery, Steam Whistle, Still Waters Distillery and Tromba Tequila. The event takes place June 20, from 7–11 p.m. Utterly unsurprisingly, there are now less than 50 tickets left. [The Stop’s Night Market]

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Food Events

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Street Food Block Party recap: a night of food trucks, lobster rolls and very enthusiastic eaters

(Image: Caroline Aksich)

In a line that snaked around the Evergreen Brick Works, well over 3,000 street food enthusiasts waited patiently for the first ever mash-up of Food Truck Eats and the Toronto Underground Market: the Street Food Block Party. The keeners at the front of the line counted down, and at five on the nose they raced into the venue trying to hit crowd favourites such as La Carnita, which has been known to draw lines with hour-long waits.

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Openings

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Introducing: SpiritHouse, King West’s new home for cocktail nerds

Brad Gubbins behind the bar, pouring a Toronto cocktail (Image: Gizelle Lau)

SpiritHouse, which opened last week, aims to bring a little cocktail cred to King West, a neighbourhood that’s often better known for the quantity rather than the quality of the booze consumed. A “spirit” bar rather than just a cocktail bar, SpiritHouse boasts a 400+ bottle selection, one of the largest in the city, including the Canadian Tag Vodka, Victoria Gin and Tromba Tequila. It’s also founded by Len Fragomeni, of the Toronto Institute of Bartending (they  operate out of the same building at Portland and Adelaide), which means it’s quickly becoming the place to go for a thorough cocktail education.

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Drinks

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Two looks at the Canadian craft spirits “boomlet”

The Distillery District’s large-scale booze output may be a relic of the past, but across Canada, small-time craft distillers are intoxicating hooch lovers both locally and abroad. An article in the Globe and Mail today highlighted some of those distillers’ successes. Out east, Prince Edward Distillery gin earned 92 points (the same score as Bombay Sapphire) from Chicago’s Beverage Testing Institute, an independent lab that ranks alcoholic beverages. And the distillery’s potato-based vodka won gold at the 2009 San Francisco World Spirits Competition, beating out top-name brands like Chopin, Skyy and Stolichnaya Red. Closer to home, Post City ran a story this week on Tequila Tromba, the new-ish tequila from Toronto’s Eric Brass, which is currently the only independent tequila available on the general list at the LCBO (it also makes for a great “La Hoja” cocktail). Tromba is spreading like wildfire, showing up at places like Brassaii, Boehmer, Cold Tea, The Drake, Pravda, The Thompson, Yours Truly and 416 Snack Bar. And of course there’s the Ontario Spring Water Sake Company down in the Distillery District, and the Concord-based Still Waters, which brews small batches of vodka. Still, despite what the Globe and Mail calls a “boomlet,” the craft-spirits renaissance is a tough racket. The domestic market is flooded by foreign-owned giants, and it can be tough to get listed by provincial liquor monopolies. Profit margins in the boutique booze business are small, and owners often have to keep other day jobs to stay afloat. [Globe and Mail] [Post City]

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