Tag Archives: chorizo

Eating all the tacos @ Añejo

So we’re hanging out at Añejo, this funky Mexican joint on King West. Last time we were here, I went to town on this Mexican meat mountain in Flavourtown, which was soooo outta bounds, bro! But you KNOW we can’t go to a Mexican place and not eat tacos — so that’s why it’s time for another visit.

Now, this place has got about a dozen tacos on the menu, but the fancier ones only come in threes. However, you can get their “Tacos Classico” in any combination of one, three or six — and with six different kinds, that means I’m having one of each.

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Forget about saving the best for last — we’ve having this one first, son!  I’m talking Barbacoa, a super tender pulled beef short rib with crunchy bites of raw jalapeños… I could slam, like, six of these alone!!!

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But we’ve moving right along to the Chicken Tinga taco. I usually find chicken tacos to be boring, but this one was a cut above — meat was very tender, although it did not have much of a kick.

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On the other hand, the Braised Mushrooms Taco is both the sauciest and spiciest one so far. Not quite as hot as the mushroom birria at Rosalinda… but I definitely needed a few sips of Michelada after this!!!

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The Chorizo Crumble was not too dry or too spicy. Basically, it was like ground beef — except it’s sausage. Oh, and a bunch of of it fell out the back…

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When it comes to pork tacos, though, I preferred the Pulled Pork. This one gets the job done with a nice little tang, son!!!

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Crispy Fried Tilapia was both crispy and flaky. A bit of the house made crema really kicks it up a notch!!!

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But you KNOW we’ve still got room for dessert, bro! Last time, I tried the tarta de chocolate, but now we gotta go for the churros. Hot ‘n crunchy, with a whole buncha powdered sugar, and some chocolate sauce on the side for dipping… There’s nothing wrong with that at all!!!

LA POUTINE WEEK 2022: Pour some gravy on me…in the name of love!!!

Just like how DoorDash brought Le Burger Week in Toronto back from the dead last year, it’s now doing the same with La Poutine Week, by taking 8 dollars off orders of 15 bucks or more from participating poutineries. Man, the last time I even bothered to cover this week was in 2016, so it’s been a while. And they do have a few more options than Burger Week, too, with 10 places to order from — although one appears to be permanently closed and another joint is serving up pho instead of poutine, which is kinda weird…

In any case, we are kicking off La Poutine Week 2022 with a tasty little dish from Loaded Pierogi. Now, I’ve had some funky surf ‘n turf pierogis from this place before, so I know they’re outta bounds, but this is the first time I’ve even been served poutine with gravy on the side. I guess they didn’t want the fries to get soggy in delivery — although the 17 other things they put on this poutine already took care of that. And while I’m all aboard this gravy train, I don’t think there was enough good gravy to go around:

Now, they call this The Queso-Rizo Poutine, and it’s pretty redonkulous. You’ve got fries covered in queso, topped with big ol’ chunks of chorizo, shredded cheddar, crispy jalapenos, caramelized AND green onions and that gravy served separately. That’s what I call starting Poutine Week off in style, son!!!!

Dude, that chorizo is TheBomb.ca, and they don’t shortchange ya, either! Queso adds a nice creaminess, and there’s a bit of a kick from the onions and hot peppas. You might have noticed that there aren’t actually any Quebec cheese curds here — so maybe you can’t call it poutine — but in that case, these were some of the best chorizo cheese fries I’ve ever had, bro!!!!!

TORONTO’S TOP TAKEOUT: Double red chorizo burger…with a pineapple on top!

Now, with all the businesses that have shut down during the pandemic, it’s rare that you hear about a restaurant that closed last year reopening in the middle of all this — but that’s exactly what happened with Harry’s Charbroiled, this legendary Parkdale burger joint. The place shut its doors in October, but reopened in April on Uber Eats, serving up real-deal burgers and fries out of an address on College St.

Now, this is body by burgers, bro, so you KNOW I had to check it out — and when I saw they had a funky red chorizo burger, I made mine a double! This is the Red Burger:

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What I like most about this burger is there’s no veggies whatsoever. You’ve got two charbroiled red chorizo patties, melty Swiss cheese, bacon (which costs $2 extra) and grilled pineapple, shoved between a not-quite-big-enough bun. There’s a nice texture on the pork, some added chew from the bacon, a bit of sweetness from those pineapple chunks, and then the cheese, which really brings it all together. Now, I know that small buns make the sausage patty look bigger, but I *maybe* couldda used a little more bread here…

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On the other hand, I really can’t complain about the size of these spuds. The thick ‘n crunchy fries were nicely salted, and stayed warm and crispy after delivery. Man, normally I would go for some chili cheese fries or loaded tater tots or something, but these plain and simple taters really hit the spot — just like the burger did!

Eating all the meats @ Campechano Taqueria

Happy Taco Tuesday, bro! We’re hanging out at Campechano Taqueria, this funky little joint right at the corner of Adelaide and Portland, where they’re serving up some real-deal Mexican meals. Now, this place is actually kinda smart — if you order four tacos, they bring ’em out one at a time, instead of all at once, so they don’t get cold.

And since they were all outta carnitas, I had to try every other meat on the menu. We’re talking lamb, we’re talking steak, chicken and chorizo… Right here, right now on Triple B!!!

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Dude, this barbacoa taco is ba-ba-ba-ba-bad to the bone, bro! You’ve got braised lamb leg, topped with cilantro, chile adobo and some jalapeno salsa… Pretty sure I could slam 17 of these — but then I wouldn’t have room for chorizo y papas!

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And this chorizo’s off the chain, bro! You’ve got pork sausage, fingerling potatoes, onions, cilantro, salsa verde and crema…I’d put that on a flip-flop!!!

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And now for something completely different. You’ve heard of tacos al pastor? Well, it’s like that, except, instead of pork, it’s chicken. Not sure if they cook it on a spit, but you’ve got some nice chunks of el pollo loco, paired with pineapple, cilantro and two kinds of salsa. It’s kinda funky, but it’s pretty tasty!!!

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Now, it’s time for the main event. This ribeye steak taco is nine bucks, which seems like a lot when you can get nueve de carnitas for that price at Latin World. But the flavours are totally on point — some of the best meat I’ve ever had in a taco, with avocado, cilantro and a spicy salsa macha. I had to pound a coupla brewskis to beat the heat, bro!!!

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Now, speaking of brewskis… This joint has got Dos Equis on tap, but for 50 cents more, they’ll pour ya a pint of this Vibrant Saison from Avling Brewery. It’s light, refreshing, more tart than tangy…and totally soaks up some of that hot sauce!

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Of course, even after all that taco goodness, you KNOW I’ve still got room for dessert, bro! The dessert menu here is just one line, and you’re looking at it: tres leches de fresas, a strawberry sponge cake soaked in condensed milk. I’m about to moo-ve it on over straight down my piehole, son!!!!!

Portuguese-style steak frites @ Via Norte

You know me, this is body by steak, bro! You can put steak on anything, and it would still taste good – as long as it’s not well done. And I’m no stranger to steak ‘n eggs for breakfast, but I don’t usually eat steak for dinner with a fried egg on top. That’s how they do it in Portugal, though, and at Via Norte, this classy joint right at the corner of College and Dovercourt, they’re serving up bistoque like they do back home.

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Now, this might not be the first rule of Flavourtown, but somewhere in the rulebook it says that when you eat at a Greek restaurant, you gotta have flaming cheese, and when you’re at a Portuguese place, you start with flaming sausage. This fire-grilled chorizo is nice and crispy, but I actually like the blood sausage even better:

via_norte_sausages (5)That’s right, they’ve got two sausages for the price of one, son!!!

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But now it’s time for the main event. This steak was cooked to a nice medium rare, and you get some nice bites of egg without it being too runny. The home fries were pretty legit, and there’s a couple of pickled veggies, you know, for that one serving of vegetables. Not the biggest or the best steak I’ve ever had, but it gets the job done.

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Actually, I’d probably say the same thing about Sagres, this pilsner beer straight outta Portugal. It’s a little maltier than, say, Steam Whistle, but it doesn’t overpower you or anything.

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Of course, after stuffing my face with sausage and steak, you KNOW I’ve still got room for dessert, bro! They didn’t have any triple chocolate cake, but this white chocolate flan, with some sweet streaks of sauce and a few fresh blueberries, might be the healthiest thing I eat all week – unless you count the pickled veggies.

Chorizo burger & Spanish fries @ Bar Reyna

So, we’re hanging out at Bar Reyna, this funky little Spanish joint right in the heart of Yorkville. Normally, this place is known for tapas, but on weekends, they’re serving up a bunch of funky brunch dishes like baklava french toast, short rib grilled cheese, a Dungeness crab benedict…and this Spanish Harlem Mona Lisa, the chorizo burger:

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This burger is pretty far outta bounds, bro! You’ve got a meaty, spicy chorizo patty topped with muenster cheese, some crunchy lettuce, caramelized onions — and then they put a fried egg on top!? Cierra la puerta trasera!!!

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Now, this burger normally comes with fries, but here we kicked it up a notch with some Spanish fries — you’ve got more chorizo, shaved manchego and a side of chipotle aioli. Trust me, you cannot get enough of this chorizo, bro!!!

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Washed it all down with an Estrella Damn beer from Barcelona. Cuz drinking a Bud Light just wouldn’t feel right…

Beer, Water, and Girl Memes: THERE SUNLYUNETHING
 HATE MORE THAN LYING
 BUD LIGHT WHICHIS WATER
 THATSLYING ABOUT BEING BEER
 funny.

Pork tacos three ways @ El Sazon Mexicano

Dude, you KNOW that Taco Tuesday is always my favourite day of the week, bro! So, we’re hanging out at El Sazón Mexicano, this funky little joint just east of the Italian part of St. Clair West. Now, I’d pretty much eat any kind of taco — you could make a taco out of a flip-flop, put it on a flip-flop, and it would still taste good! But when I heard they were serving up not one, not two, but three kinds of pork tacos…I pretty much had to try all of them!!!

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So, we’re starting off with chorizo. This meaty Mexican sausage was super greasy, but not too spicy. All of their tacos come the same way, topped with onions and cilantro, but I also added a little salsa verde to this one…

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Next up, we’ve got the Mexican radio star, Taco Al Pastor. This pork was nicely seasoned, super-tender…but maybe couldda used a slice of pineapple or two for that extra tangyness.

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Of course, we’re saving the best for last — las carnitas, cabron! This Mexican pulled pork had the perfect texture, with an extra squeeze of lime… Dude, this is body by carnitas!!!

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Now, because I didn’t get enough chorizo in my diet, I also went with an order of choriqueso. This dish is kinda like queso fundido, but less queso, more fun, bro! You pretty much get three large, cheesy chorizo tacos for just seven bucks here. Dude, all this food and a Mexican Coke was only 25 dollars after tax… That’s like 357 pesos, hermanos!!!

Smashing Spanish tapas @ Bar Isabel

Now, I’m not really the biggest fan of tapas — if I gotta share food, it means that someone else isn’t getting very much. Flavourtown is all about survival of the fattest, bro! But I heard there’s this funky little joint on College with some crazy craft beers and a solid selection of seafood, chorizo and potatoes…which are a few of my favourite things, so you know I had to check it out! Bienvenidos a Bar Isabel!!!

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So, we’re starting out with some mussels from, well, probably not Brussels, but Barcelona, I guess? One thing I know is that these mussels escabeche are pretty Van Damme delicious! It’s a dish served cold, with a tangy sauce, and some little onions and peppers for that extra roundhouse kick!!!

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Now, if you’re serving up a dish that translates to brave potatoes, then you KNOW I’m gonna hafta take the plunge. These patatas bravas are coming in hot out of the oven, smothered in sour cream and hot sauce, and topped with green onions and cilantro. I could eat this all day, bro — but I still gotta save room for chorizo!

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These snack-sized sausages were pretty much on point. Cooked to the right temperature, with a bit of sweet, a bit of heat, and that good ol’ garlicky aftertaste that’s like a breath mint in Flavourtown. This is one sausagefest you don’t wanna miss!!!

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Of course, when it comes to this Spanish feast, I’m skipping right past the vino and heading straight to the craft beer, bro! This ice cold bottle of Er Boqueron is imported from Spain, and brewed with Mediterranean sea water for a crisp, refreshing taste. This is one cerveza that makes that joke about having sex in a canoe seem like not such a bad thing after all…

 

Authentic Mexican tacos ‘n tortas on St. Clair West

Normally, when I want Mexican food I head to Kensington Market — Seven Lives, El Trompo, Torteria San Cosme… It’s like a festival of funk in Flavourtown! But lately, I heard that up on St. Clair, right around Oakwood, there’s a couple funky joints serving up real-deal, authentic Mexican that’s too legit to quit — so you know I’ve gotta check this out!

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Itacate is this little family run taco joint inside an old butcher shop, where everything’s made fresh to order. This means you might hafta wait a bit to get yer grub… but their tacos, like this chorizo y papas, are well worth the wait, hermanos! You’ve got great big chunks of Mexican sausage, little pieces of potato, with some onions, cilantro and hot sauce from the condiment bar…dude, I could eat this for breakfast, lunch AND dinner!!!

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But the funkaliciousness don’t stop there — no way, Jose! They call this one Placero, and it’s a fiesta in mi boca! You’ve got freshly made pork rinds (chicharones) with avocado and cactus (nopal), and then they put these big ol’ strips of queso panela, a fresh, smooth Mexican cheese on top. Now, I’ve had some crazy tacos in my time, but this one is definitely right up there… But you KNOW we’ve still got room for more, bro!!!

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So, we’re headed just across the street to Tenoch Restaurant, this real-deal, authentic Mexican joint that’s just on the east side of Oakwood. Unlike Itacate, this place is more of a sit-down joint…and you’ll definitely wanna be sitting down to take on one of their signature tortas!

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Their Tenoch torta packs more meat between two buns than I think I’ve ever seen, son! You’ve got shredded chipotle pork, deep-fried milanesa steak, ham, pastrami, eggs and hot dogs — it’s like La T-Rex poutine of sandwiches! And while you KNOW I scarfed down every single last bite… I definitely didn’t have room for dessert!

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Scarfing down on sausage at Taste of Toronto 2017!

So last year at Taste of Toronto, I kinda pigged out a bit. And speaking of pigging, it seemed like every place had some sorta hot dog at this year’s festival. But it wasn’t just pig we’re talking ’bout here–they’ve got duck, lamb and even wild boar, bro! And every time you put a tube of meat between two buns, you know I’m down with that, son!!!

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This grilled duck dog from my main man Mark McEwan is pretty outta bounds, bro! You’ve actually got duck three ways here–there’s the sausage itself, topped with foie gras mousse, and these crispy little bits of duck bacon. Dude, this is body by duck bacon! And then you’ve got a spicy Russian mustard, onion jam and some crisp spring onion, all on a poppy seed bun. Shut the back door!

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Now, I wasn’t really ready to go right back into the ring with sausage after that delicious duck dish, but then I saw ’em cooking up the green chorizo on the grill at Bar Raval, and I was all over that like chili on cheese fries! Probably one of the most tasty, flavourful sausages I’ve even eaten–and it comes with piri piri chicken, to boot! That’s like a two-for-one after-school special in Flavourtown!!!!

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Of course, it’s always French Fry Time in Flavourtown. And Nota Bene was serving these spuds up okonomiyaki style! You’ve got the kewpie mayo, the tempura bits and the nori flakes…but the fries kinda tasted like McDonald’s, though!!!

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But that ain’t even the only okonomiyaki game in town, bro! This char siu bao from my homies at Kanpai Snack Bar was completely off the hook! You’ve got all kindsa crunchiness from the purple slaw, spring onions, bacon bits and bonito flakes, and beneath all that, there’s some nice ‘n tender porky goodness. It’s like a Secret Garden of Funk in Flavourtown!!!

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Now, you might be getting full at this point, but if there’s one thing I know, it’s that there’s always room for beef brisket. Barque Smokehouse is one of my top three BBQ joints in the city, and they’re taking brisket south of the border with this pulled brisket tostada! You’ve got brisket, salsa and avocado crema all on a crispy tortilla chip–pretty sure I could slam seven more of these!!!!

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Now, you know I’ve had wild boar before, bro. I’ve even put it on poutine. But deep-fried wild boar on a stick!? Shut the back, front and side doors, son! Antler Kitchen and Bar won the Taste the World challenge in 2016, and it’s not hard to see why with flavours this baller!

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Now, when it comes to world flavours, I have had fried chicken from Korea, Taiwan and Kentucky, but this Indonesian-style ayam goreng was new to me. It’s kinda like chicken karaage, except with this spicy sauce on top, and they serve it with a side of war fries, which are kinda like a Tony Iommi guitar solo in Flavourtown! You’ve got some thick, crunchy spuds topped with pickled chilies, green onions, mayo and peanut sauce. These fries are TheBomb.id, bro!!!