Yesterday was Country Day at the Rogers Centre, which means I showed up bright and early…at 2 pm. You had a plaid-sleeved, long-sleeve Blue Jays t-shirt giveaway, my Alberta bros in High Valley bustin’ out some Alan Jackson and Joe Diffie tunes, and all the cheerleaders were dressed up like rootin’, tootin’ cowgirls. For a minute there, I almost forgot I was in Toronto!
Of course, I wasn’t just there to hoedown, bro! When I heard they were serving up some new culinary creations for the 2018 season, you KNOW I was gonna dive right in. And while the beef brisket sandwich and the Korean BBQ tacos sounded tasty, I knew there was only one Flavourtown rockstar headed straight down my piehole–the Log Cabin Sandwich:
This gay Republican’s wet dream comes fully loaded with pulled pork, baked beans and cheese curds on a savoury rosemary waffle. Now, the waffle was nice and fluffy, and the pulled pork was on point…but the beans had no flavour and the cheese curds were cold as ice, ice baby. There was no gravy or sauce on this sammy, but once the pulled pork warmed the cheese up a bit, it came together pretty good. So, I wouldn’t call this dish a home run, but it was more like a Teoscar Hernandez triple off the top of the wall, maybe?
Of course, after pounding all that pork, you KNOW I still had room for dessert, bro! Now, this churro poutine has about as much in common with actual poutine as Guy Fieri does with Guy Lafleur…but if you wanna slam six churros with a scoop of ice cream, you definitely can’t go wrong here!
Now, you KNOW I love chicken and waffles bro, and I’ve definitely scarfed down my share of KFC Double Downs back in the day, so when I heard KFC was combining these two things, I was all over that like a fat kid on a quadruple chicken, double waffle sandwich:
OK, so there’s no way I’m shoving this all down my piehole at once, even with my patented Guy Fieri hunch. But even when eaten separately, that’s more fried chicken than you can shake a fried sticken at!
OK, now let’s break it down. These puppies are made to order, so the chicken is super hot and crispy. The waffle is really legit–nice and fluffy–and then you’ve got this sweet, sticky maple aioli oozing out from the inside. I gotta say, this sandwich is pretty outta bounds, but what’s missing here is some bacon, bro! White Brick Kitchen knows what’s up!!!
But that’s not to say I’m NOT going to eat at least seven more of these. Dude, this is body by fried chicken and waffles!!!!!!
I didn’t even know you could get poutine at Swiss Chalet, but apparently that’s a thing now. And not just any ol’ poutine–they’ve got rotisserie beef poutine, taco poutine and chicken shawarma poutine. Now, you know I love shawarma, and this is body by poutine, bro…so I was gonna hafta try the chicken shawarma poutine, even if i didn’t really expect it to taste like either of those things.
First of all, it’s safe to say that Swiss Chalet is not roasting this dish on a big shawarma spit. This is basically the regular Swiss Chalet chicken–both white meat and dark meat–pulled off the bird, bro. They lay it out on a bed of Chalet fries with lettuce, tomato, some feta cheese and great big globs of garlic sauce. Dude, Great Big Globs of Garlic Sauce was my nickname as sous chef at Joey Tomatos, bro!!!
Now, while this isn’t quite as good as the chicken shawarma nachos I made a couple years back, it will totally still fill you up. Actually, the Chalet sauce kinda brings everything together. But what really gets me is the lemon pepper seasoning they put on the fries. There’s just a touch too much of it. And I don’t think lemon pepper belongs on poutine–or on shawarma, for that matter. Next time, I might go for the rotisserie beef poutine, instead…
Because I didn’t get enough tacos for Christmas, I headed back to Assembly Chef’s Hall, where they’ve got a funky little joint that’s hand rolling the corn tortillas and grilling up the beef, lamb and fish. At Los Colibris, these tacos go for about seven bucks a pop, but you can’t just expect me to eat one taco, bro!!!
Man, this lamb barbacoa is so far outta bounds, it ended up on the other side of the wall!!! It’s like what you get when you cross roast lamb with pulled pork–a total taste sensation! Pretty sure I could slam, like, seven of these…but then I wouldn’t be able to sample the other tasty taco offerings:
This beef alambre is giving me hambre, hombre! You’ve got the tender grilled beef, with bell peppers, onions, cilantro and salsa that’s practically baked into the shell. Man, this taco is totally messy, and you KNOW if it ain’t messy, it ain’t tasty, bro!!!!
This baja fish taco is about to swim straight down my piehole! You’ve got a crispy battered fish with a nice, crunchy slaw–and then I dumped a whole buncha chipotle sauce on top. Cuz I’m in love with chipotle, bro!!!
The Assembly Chef’s Hall is now fully operational, with a buncha new food stands just opening up yesterday. And this is definitely the one I was waiting for, right here. I’ve never been to Cherry St Bar-B-Que before, cuz it’s in the middle of nowhere, but I can tell you that their food is straight outta Downtown Flavourtown. Here’s the beef right here, heading straight down my piehole!!!
Man, this brisket is too legit to quit! You’ve got some big, meaty slices with just the right amount of fat. The meat is super-tender, melt-in-your-mouth, with that real-deal smoky flavour. The onions, pickles and holla-atcha-penos on the side make it a fully balanced breakfast, bro! They only had brisket and pulled pork on opening day, but I’m told they’ll be doing turkey and ribs too…so you know I’ll be back, like, seven times a week!!!!!!!
Now, fried chicken is just about the best kind of fast food there is–especially when you get it at a gas station in Cleveland. As far as I’m concerned, every real-deal food court needs a fried chicken joint, and the Assembly Chef’s Hall checks that box with Love Chix.
This funky chicken shack is serving up winner, winner chicken dinner with seasonal sides sold separately, but for the same price, you can also get it in sandwich form, like so:
OK, let’s break it down. You’ve got a crispy breaded fried chicken with a honey hot sauce that’s equal parts heat and sweet. There’s also a great big glop of tangy mayo, some scratch-made slaw and just a couple greens, for presentation. Between the hot sauce and the mayo, I totally destroyed a couple napkins slamming this sammy down my piehole, bro! I gotta say, it’s pretty tasty…but it’s also 15 bucks, so there’s that.
This funky new food court just opened downtown in the Google building on Richmond St. Now, whenever there’s a new food court in town, you KNOW I’m not far behind—but you won’t find any Mickey D’s or KFC here, bro! Instead, they’ve got these fancy eateries from all over the city offering scaled down versions of their menu in a fast-food format. Assembly Chef’s Hall is outta bounds!!!
Now, pizza is probably one of my most favourite things in the world. Dude, this is body by pizza, bro! So it figures that the very first place I’d frequent in the food court would be this funky joint, Goodson Pizza. They’ve got a full service restaurant on Queen St W, but over here, they’re doing what they do best, serving up a handful of scratch-made, real-deal, Italian-style pies. They even stretch the dough out on the counter right before your eyes!
Now this here is my personal pan favourite, the spicy sopressata. You’ve got a nice base from the San Marzano tomatoes, some ooey, gooey bites of flor di latte, and a whole buncha cured Italian meat, bro! Crust is not too chewy, not too crispy, and there’s a nice little kick from the chili oil. This is definitely the best pizza you’ll ever get at a food court—it puts a horse’s head in Sbarro’s bed, mafi-bro-so!!!!