Our neighbors up north are hiding a lot of awesome things up there. This past year, after a decade-long hiatus, I finally had a chance to visit various parts of Canada and explore some of the amazing things it has to offer.
I'm no stranger to Canada. In fact, I grew up an hour outside of Windsor, Ontario. My family used to drive there all the time to eat dim sum and get Chinese groceries. It was one of those day trips I always looked forward to . . .
Ever since moving to Boston, however, those visits have diminished to nearly zero. My last visit was the Jazz Festival in Montreal during the summer of 2000. Yes, its' been that long. It wasn't until this past year, for a number of very different reasons (wedding, funeral, work), that I ended up hitting three major Canadian cities in one year.
As always, can you guess where I went?
Pop in anytime to get hot, freshly baked bagels which are made 24-hours a day.
Stand in a long line to get a taste of one of Montreal's most famous bites - the smoked meat sandwich - so, so incredibly good.
Just look at the chalkboard for the daily menu. On any given night, this Anthony Bourdain-blessed (and thus now internationally famous) restaurant may offer you bone marrow stuffed with fois gras, horse filet mignon, hand picked greens from their greenhouse, or the crazy "double down" deep fried fois gras sandwich.
One of only two Canadian chefs ever to ever win Iron Chef America, this Food Network star pushes the edge on creative interpretations of seafood small plates with his second restaurant in Montreal.
And just a tiny small peek into Toronto . . .
A simple Chinese chain serves up solid, fantastic Chinese dim sum dishes and congee. *Sigh* - Why can't we have such Chinese chains here??
How do the xiao long baos taste at the "knock-off" Din Tai Fung?
What can I say? Chinese food in Toronto is just pretty freaking awesome.
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