I haven’t seen my friend M in a few months and its been just as long since I’ve ventured into her neighborhood of Bloor West Village. Upon her recommendation, we decided to hit a up Baka Gallery Cafe, a local cafe serving not only the typical coffee and pastries but also breakfast, lunch and dinner. A modern, white space inside with a good sized patio and a second floor dining room with a bar, it was a busy afternoon with the cafe full of customers. When I first walked in I noticed the cafe was open to mobile phone store attached to the front of the cafe – apparently its owned by the Baka Mobile store. I ordered an iced latte and the sausage bagel, one of their three breakfast entrees. You can’t see the sausage patty in the photo, dwarfed by the fried egg resting on top, but its there. Made with pork and fennel, fried and then topped with the fried egg, a slice of havarti, roasted tomato and served on a toasted poppy seed bagel. M’s arugula salad looked really fresh, with tons of strawberries, walnuts, cashews and feta. The food is definitely decent but what makes this place great is the local vibe it exudes.
Tag Archives: coffee
There were two places that I needed to come back and visit on my trip back to Tarpon Springs, Rusty Bellies (check my previous post) and Hellas. I love greek desserts, everything from baklava to their cookies…they are all delicious. Even with my trips to Little Greece in Toronto (on the Danforth) I’ve never come across chocolate covered baklava and two years ago, I tried it for the first time. So I was craving for some baklava and my favourite, diples. These are rolled, deep fried dough that is then dipped in a honey syrup and topped with chopped nuts and cinnamon. I discovered diples at Hellas and fell in love with this airy, sweet dessert. Its a perfect place to stop by for dessert and a coffee…heck, do what I did – dinner at Rusty Bellies and dessert at Hellas, you can’t go wrong!
Following other bloggers/instagramers is awesome because you find gems like this. And I’m always on a mission to find a good cup of iced joe (aka, coffee) and we found it here at the Daily. Owned by the Butcher & Bee, a restaurant that sits right next to it, you know this place is going not only have good coffee but good food too. Before going on our carriage ride through old town Charleston, we stopped by to grab breakfast. My iced coffee was satisfying but my breakfast was surprisingly delicious and fresh, I felt like I was eating at a farmer’s market. On a large slice of sourdough that was perfectly toasted, Z’aatar seasoned and mashed avocados were spread as the base with two slices of ripe heirloom tomatoes topped with a drizzle of good olive oil. The ricotta toast, made with the same sourdough but topped with fresh ricotta, honey and walnuts; and the breakfast tacos with scrambled eggs and chorizo looked just as yummy! I wish I lived here just so I could make a stop at the Daily a part of my everyday routine.
I know it seems as though I was just in Florida but here I go again, 2 months later, this time for dragon boat training. This time, instead of flying down to Tarpon Springs, Florida, a couple of my teammates (I and S) and I decide to take a bit of a detour and hit a few cities on the way down. Our second stop was Washington D.C. – the first was Woodbury Commons for some well-deserved shopping. Once we checked into our hotel, we drove down to Georgetown to stop at a cafe called Baked & Wired for a cup of java. Named Washington’s top rated cafe and after my visit I know why. Comprised of a space that is semi-divided into a “baked” side and a “wired” (coffee) side, the exterior is accented in pink (a old basket bike painted in pink sits just outside) and the interior is just as cute and inviting, a really chilled vibe. We weren’t expecting to grab a bite but the line up of cupcakes along the counter just called to be eaten. After ordering a cold drip, we decided to try the homemade raspberry pop tart and the car bomb cupcake. The pop tart was unique with a thin shortbread base, a layer or raspberry preserves and topped with icing. It was sweet so its perfect for sharing. The cupcake is larger in size than most and comes wrapped in parchment so it has a “homemade” touch – it was a good cupcake with a moist cake. The stop at Baked & Wired was a great way to recharge before heading back out to explore Georgetown’s high street.
Located in the up and coming area of Miami’s Design District (similar to Toronto’s King East which is lined with furniture shops), is a retail space called Chrome Hearts that allows emerging artists and designers a space to sell their goods. And tucked away past the black gates right beside the open air atrium and patio is David’s Cafe Cafecito. Normally we would have walked right past this cafe if it weren’t for the folks across the street at Jonathan Adler‘s store. Taking their advice on getting some good coffee we ventured to David’s. And what a gem! Such a funky locale and the perfect weather to sit out on the patio. Being an iced coffee junky, I ordered the iced cafe con leche. Made with milk and a giant coffee ice cube – an ingenious way to avoid coffee dilution. The menu is simple but we didn’t go there to eat. It’s all about the coffee and the details here, even down to the designs on the sugar cubes. Great place to sit, have a cup of coffee (iced for me) and catch up with a friend.
The first time I went to Versailles was back in 2008 when I went down to visit my good friend M who was working in Miami at the time. Seven years later, I’m back in Miami on a girls weekend and after a full day at the outlets shopping we stopped at Versailles for dinner. Its almost a given that whenever you visit Miami, you have to go to Versailles for cuban food. I tried the classic cuban sampler platter the first time here so I decided to try something else. The server recommended the most popular dish, “Chicken Versailles”, grilled half chicken that is marinated in cuban mojo and served with moros rice, sweet plantains and garlic butter. To this day, I still remember how delicious the fried plantains were and eight years later, nothing has changed – they remain my favourite thing at Versailles. The server also recommended cuban coffee to finish off the meal and at first I was hesitant, not sure why, but I’m glad I listened to him. The concentrated and rich coffee was delicious, already sweetened and comes black – you definitely can’t have more than one.
I know what you’re thinking, and no, I did not visit every single bakery in Denmark but I wish I had! Don’t get me wrong, France is still my number one love when it comes to pastries and sweets but who knew Denmark would have such a sweet tooth. They know how to incorporate grains and I love their hearty breads. One particular bakery located in Illum department store in Copenhagen was probably my favourite, Holm’s Bager, and I think we went there at least once a day during our stay. I ordered at least three pastries each time and tried something new on each visit but it still wasn’t enough. I’m just going to have to go back to Copenhagen!