Tag Archives: Asian fusion

These tiny octopus tacos are packing some really big flavours…

You know me, this is body by tacos, bro! You could put pretty much anything in a taco (except maybe chapulines) and I’d eat it — so when I heard that DaiLo, this funky Asian fusion joint in Little Italy, was serving up crispy octopus tacos, I was all over that like Ringo, bro!!!!

dailo_octopus_taco (5)

Now, I don’t just have big hands — these tacos were pretty tiny! I ate ’em in two bites each…but they were some of the best four bites of food I’ve had this year. Not only is there crispy octopus in here, but it’s paired with braised pork belly, for a bit of sticky sweetness. Plus there’s a couple crunchy onions, a sambal donkey sauce, and then — get this — the shell is not a tortilla, it’s made of jicama! Let’s just say I liked this dish a lot better than the time I had jicama pretending to be a fish burger

smoked_duck_bokkeum (3)

But four bites and 19 bucks later, you KNOW I’m still hungry like the wolf, bro!!! So it’s time for this funky cross between French and Korean — Smoked Duck Bokkeum. Now, bokkeum is like a Korean stir-fry, usually made with pork, squid or even octopus (I had to look that up). But I don’t think it normally looks like this — I mean, the only rice on this worn-out plank of wood is sprinkled on top for decoration. What you’ve got here instead is duck breast and purple potato salad, along with a few pickled veggies:

smoked_duck_bokkeum (10)

Still, I gotta say, that duck was super-tasty, melt-in-your-mouth tender, and the purple taters added a nice touch. Hey, it’s no Pekin Duck for one… but it’s gotta be the second-best duck dish I’ve had since the pandemic started!!!!

blood_orange_shapeshifter (6)

Now, when I’m at a funky joint like this, I gotta go with the funkiest beer on tap — which would happen to be a Blood Orange Shapeshifter sour IPA from Halo Brewery. If not for the fizzy head, I wouldn’t even know this was a beer — it tastes just like an Italian soda or orange Jarritos. Which didn’t stop me from pounding 3-4 of these…

Duck confit dumplings & Wagyu beef chow mein @ Mother Tongue

Now, downtown Toronto has no shortage of funky fusion food — I mean, we just chowed down on some Chinese/Jamaican last week. And me, I’ll try anything at least once…especially if it includes Wagyu beef, bro! So we’re hanging out at Mother Tongue, this cozy spot in the Entertainment District, where they’re serving up Filipino, Thai and Chinese food with a twist. Dude, check out these duck dumplings!!!!

mother_tongue_duck_dumplings (6)

You can definitely taste the richness of the duck confit in these bad boys, and I think there’s even a little foie gras. But you KNOW that’s just a light snack in Flavourtown, bro!!!!!

wagyu_chow_mein (20)

Now it’s time for the main event: Torched Wagyu Chow Mein. They actually blowtorch the beef at your table, for the nice finishing touch. Noodles are slightly crispy, but mostly chewy, taking this dish to another level. And there’s a couple of veggies hiding underneath — you can’t see ’em, but they’re there…

mother_tongue_beignets (4)

At this place, they’ve only got one thing for dessert, and that’s beignets. But these ain’t yer momma’s beignets, son! They’re topped with a “Sichuan sugar,” which is actually not sweet, but very salty and spicy. The dough is not bad though, but those spices just kill it for me, bro — this might be the first time in my life that I actually didn’t finish dessert, and it’s not cuz I was full or anything…

These deep-fried lamb balls are magically delicious!!!

Back at the beginning of First Lockdown, I ordered a whole Pekin duck from R&D…and ate it all myself. Dude, that duck was delicious! So now that they’re open for indoor dining again, we decided to stop by for another funky dish — how bout some deep-fried lamb balls, bro???

r&d_lamb_croquettes (5)

Now, I know what you’re thinking…but we’re NOT nibbling on nutsacks here. These lamb croquettes are stuffed with braised lamb shank, potatoes and onions, served in a sea of lamb curry with some donkey sauce on the side. Dude, you KNOW I love lamb bro, and these tender little flavour nuggets just melt in my mouth!!!

r&d_fried_chicken (5)

But now it’s time for the main event: chicken fried karaage style with a seaweed donkey sauce and a some lemon on the side. Man, this chicken was juicy, crispy…and coming in so hot I burned the back of my mouth, bro! And for 22 dollars, you get more than enough to share — unless you’re the type of person who eats a whole Pekin duck to themself. 😉

fountain_green_ipa (7)

And since the name of this blog isn’t Chicken, Croquettes & Coca-Cola, we’re washing this down with a Fountain Green IPA from Furnace Room Brewery in downtown Georgetown. First time I’ve ever heard of this beer, or even this brewery, but it checks all the boxes than an IPA should, so it’s all good in the Flavourhood!!!!