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Stone Road Grille $100 Giveaway for Wine Country Ontario’s #12daysWCO

December in food blog land — ”flavour country” to you and me — is the magical time for giveaway contests. The PR companies that represent various brands approach writers and say: “we have this really great doodad that we’d like you to give your readers a chance of winning.” Often the doodad isn’t so great or it just doesn’t have anything to do with the conversation I try to have on Food With Legs. That’s my fairly obvious way of introducing an exception, a really great prize that I think you’ll want to win, to give to a loved one or keep for yourself.

The Wine Council of Ontario runs a programme they call Wine Country Ontario that promotes the idea that our province’s wine regions are more than just a great place to get sloshed surrounded by rows of grape vines, disappearing over the horizon. Don’t get me wrong, they like wine, but also want to help you find a place to stay in the County, plan your route while on Pelee Island and a great restaurant to eat at while in Niagara-on-the-Lake. (more…)

Potato Tortilla

Potatoes, onions, and olive oil flavour this national egg dish of Spain.

You might be surprised that “un espresso, por favor” and “una Estrella, por favor” sound quite similar when passed through the imperfect filter that is my flawed Spanish. I can tell you that having thought I said the former I was surprised to turn around and find a bottle of one of Spain’s most popular beers waiting for me. At 8:30 AM.

“What the hell?” I thought, “it’s Spain and judging by the age of my fellow breakfast-imbibers one beer won’t be lethal.”

Beer wasn’t a common feature of my breakfasts in Spain last month but tortilla patatas definitely was. Even more than paella or gazpacho this frittata-like egg preparation is the ubiquitous, national dish of Spain. It anchors the simple breakfast of pastries, small sandwiches, and coffee that many neighbourhood taverns use to extend their revenue-making hours into the pre-siesta half of the day. (more…)

Golden Gluttons: Go Mobile

Last week I had a post recapping a lot of what we ate while in San Francisco. This one is going to cover everything from food trucks, market vendors, and anything that was in any way street food.

During our five days in SF we managed to fit in two of the Off the Grid food truck events. Friday night 27 vendors (truck and tent) gather in a parking lot at Fort Mason, a former army base that has been repurposed as community space and would be familiar to Torontonians as having the vibe of the Wychwood Barns on a scale and in a space like the Distillery District. (more…)

Confederation Cove Mussels

In my first two posts about our trip to PEI I sang the praises of the delicious Three Pigs burger, shared my impression of a good takeout fish spot, and remembered the best black cherry milkshake I’ve had in a long time. Here’s the thing, none of those were really the highlight of the trip for me. What I was really interested in was the tour we got of the Confederation Cove Mussel plant in Borden-Carleton and the mussels we brought home.

Picturesque wharf scene including old-timer who ignored the "No Trespassing" signs to fish there.

Picturesque PEI scene including old-timer who ignored the "No Trespassing" signs to fish there.

The plant manager, Len, was kind enough to take us on a thorough tour of their facilities. We started by walking out to the end of the break-wall that protects their wharf (Len thinks it might be the only privately owned one in Canada) and offers a spectacular view of the Confederation Bridge.

The Confederation Cove wharf in Borden-Carlton.

The Confederation Cove wharf in Borden-Carleton.

On the way back inside we visited the By The Water Shellfish facility that is also located on Confederation Cove owned land. By The Water has impressively modern and controlled system for sorting, storing, and packing Atlantic lobster. The lobster holding tanks can keep up to 400,000 lbs of live lobster in suitable conditions for months, thereby extending the season for live lobster. (more…)

Hitting the Road

“It’s five o’clock in Toronto and 1953 on PEI” That’s a joking reference one my girlfriend’s friends makes to how quaint Canada’s smallest province can be.  My post from last week went through some of the highlights from our meals in big-city Charlottetown at restaurants that could easily compete in Toronto. Today I’m going to look at our more nostalgic meals. Nostalgia for a time before I was born in a place I’ve only been to once before.

The harbour view in Rusticoville.

The harbour view in Rusticoville.

There’s something about red-sand beaches and wide, blue skies that fade into the ocean that bring out the best on the faces of native Islanders. I’d offer photographic evidence to prove this but my travel companion hates having her picture taken enough that I don’t dare ask her permission to post one. After spending the end of an afternoon–after 4PM is the best time to go when noisy children have tired and their grandparents are heeding the call of the early-bird dinner gong–on one of the north shore’s national park beaches we decided to climb over the dunes and search for a local restaurant. (more…)