Today I am going to blog about something totally different from all my other posts up until now, thus making this my first entry that is not directly about beer (I guess this falls under the “things” category in my blogs title). I am going to talk about a number of the places to eat in my neighbourhood.
The Annex is a pretty safe bet when it comes to finding something to eat. There is a great selection of various cuisines on Bloor street between Spadina and Bathurst. Another thing to note is that there is no McDonnalds, KFC, Wendy’s or any other large fast food chain here (sorry Justen). Pizza Pizza is here but who doesn’t like a greasy slice of pizza every now and then.
I want to start with the place that sparked my idea for this entry. Southern Accent is located on Markham St. in Mirvish village just west of Bathurst. They serve up some of the finest Cajun/Creole/Soul food in the city and have done so since 1984. The atmosphere is all New Orleans from the pictures on the wall to the mardi gras masks hung around the dining room. Aside from the décor the small things they offer accentuate the whole southern vibe. The cocktails they make, the music they play and things like bourbon tastings really make this place feel like a little piece of Louisiana.
Aside form the charming aesthetics, the food can hold its own. The first time I went there was with my girlfriend and I had the prix fixe menu. It was superb with corn bread to start, their famous voodoo pasta as my main with a scoop of homemade ice cream for dessert. I decided then that I would be back. That last statement is a bit of an understatement. Since that day I have been there almost every Tuesday throughout the summer. Why Tuesday? Well, on Tuesday they serve what in my opinion is the best deal in the entire city.
I present to you the Pint and a Po’boy. Every Tuesday they serve up Po’boy sandwiches a la carte with a pint of either Hoptical Illusion, Creemore or Dennisons Dunkel. These things are seriously addictive and come in shrimp, blackened chicken or tofu served on a fresh bun with lettuce, tomato and their Po’boy sauce. The best part about this is that its only $10. If you go with a couple friends get the calamari as an appetizer – it’s fantastic as well. For $15 including tip you can get a complete meal with a pint of beer. I don’t that this can be topped anywhere. Also, my neighbors and I have developed what you can call “regular” status and the staff are super nice and know exactly what we’re ordering as soon as they see us. Don’t worry though; if you’re not a regular they are still really nice.
As for the rest of the Annex there are some gems here. Tonight I went to Jerk King for some spicy jerk chicken and rice and the chicken was cooked perfectly with tons of spice – I couldn’t be happier that we finally have a spot for jerk chicken here. If you like sushi you are in luck. There are more sushi places on Bloor between Sapdina and Bathurst then there are bars. It’s actually ridiculous sometimes. Sushi on Bloor is excellent, fast and priced very well – the only downside is that it is always super busy and you may have to wait a while for a table. Kayla and I opt for take out because we live so close and we don’t have to wait for a table that way. Wok In Wok Out has become another local favorite of ours. You pick out any rice or noodle, beef, chicken, pork or shrimp and whatever veggies you like and any of their homemade sauces and then they cook it up in front of you. It also comes in one of those Chinese food take out containers that look cool. Rounding out my list of favorites is Burrito Banditos. If the name isn’t a dead giveaway they make burritos and they make them well. It’s your standard burrito place – small, warm and loud but they make best burrito I have ever had.
So that’s it if you have the chance to go to any of these places do it and tell them Pino sent you…..they will be confused but you will be fed well. Also stay away form Yummy B-B-Q because it is just awful. Also, I hope you are all enjoying Toronto Beer Week!