Tag Archives: duck confit

Allez les Duck le Bleu!!!!

Now, we’re pretty big fans of French food here on Triple B, and one of the most classic French dishes is duck confit. So when I heard Joy on Avenue, this funky little joint in Yorkville, was serving up this dish called Duck le Bleu, you KNOW I had to check it out, bro!

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But before we get to the duck, first let’s have some pork. Dude, this pork belly is super-tender, with cauliflower puree on the bottom and wild figs on top. I could crush at least four of these, son!

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Speaking of things that come in fours, these seared scallops are super-legit! Man, after that disappointing Crouching Melon, Hidden Scallop dish I had at Chica, I was hungry like the wolf for some real-deal bivalves, and these babies definitely didn’t disappoint!

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Now, usually when I see duck confit, it would be duck leg, not duck breast. But the meat here is cooked perfectly, nice ‘n juicy. And it’s served with a side of blueberry risotto, which puts the bleu in Duck le Bleu. Man, this would really go great with a Blanche de Chambly Bluet…but they don’t serve any beer at this place at all, bro. 😦 😦 😦

 

 

 

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!!!!

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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!!!!!

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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…

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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…

ICE ICELAND BABY: Rudolph the red-nosed cured reindeer…

It’s our last night in Iceland, and we’re saving the best for last, bro! We’re hanging out at Hofnin, this classy joint on the harbourfront that would be right up there with some of the best places I’ve been to in Toronto this past year. But we’re starting off with something you would never find in the T-Dot — I’m talking cured reindeer filet, son!!!!!

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Santa’s sleigh guider has the texture of thin-sliced carpaccio, although it’s already cooked, which makes it more like charcuterie. Served with blueberries, sour cherries and asparagus, along with like a side salad or something. I’d let it join in any reindeer games, bro!!!

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And since we’re in the Christmas spirit, it only seems fitting to pair poor Rudolph with a Christmas beer — Jola Gull. Hey, if Gull Lager is the Molson Canadian of Icelandic beer, its Christmas beer is more like Iceland’s answer to Rickard’s Red…and I don’t mind me some Rickard’s Red!

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But that’s not all, folks! Up next, we’ve got duck confit — a dish you don’t see every day in Iceland. But I gotta say, this duck is super-tasty, fork-tender and unctuously rambunctious, son! Who knew I’d have one of my Top 5 duck confits in Iceland…and did I mention that it comes with a side of bacon-wrapped asparagus, which is the best possible kind of asparagus???

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Of course, you KNOW we’ve still got room for dessert, and this here’s a Triple B fan fav — molten chocolate cake!!! Now, I was expecting it to ooze lava out the middle like some Icelandic volcano I could never pronounce…but while the cake was served warm, it was still solid in the middle. They also paired it with a scoop of black licorice flavoured ice cream, which really kicks it up a notch!!!

Let’s just say that out of all the funky joints we’ve checked out in the Icelandic food scene, this one takes the cake.

PATIO LIT EATS: Breezy Sunday brunch @ the Brick Works

As we start heading into fall, you gotta ask yourself, how cold is too cold to eat out on a patio? I saw a couple places that busted out the heaters last weekend, but if you go out in the daytime, you probably don’t need em…yet. We’re hanging out at Cafe Belong, this funky little joint in the Evergreen Brick Works, on a sunny Sunday afternoon. At 15 degrees, the weather was pretty decent — as long as the wind wasn’t blowing. But with the wind, you definitely needed a jacket.

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This place is serving up the same dishes for lunch and dinner on its all-day menu, and while they did have a couple of Sunday specials that checked all the boxes for brunch, I ended up with the duck confit, served with cherry tomatoes, green beans and creamed corn — the most veggies I’ve had all week. The bird had a nice, crispy skin, and the meat was pretty tender, but man, that corn-to-duck ratio was maybe a bit too high…

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We’re washing it down with a Muskoka Mad Tom IPA, cuz hey, it’s 12 o’clock somewhere. This beer had enough hoppy IPA taste, without being too in-your-face. And I had to hold on to the empty can cuz the wind kept blowing it over!!!

PATIO LIT EATS: Duck confit ravioli @ Terroni

Dude, this is body by ravioli, bro! When I was a kid, I would plow through Chef Boyardee’s like it was crack in a can, so when I heard that Terroni, this funky Italian joint on Adelaide, was serving up not just any kind of ravioli, but duck confit ravioli, with not one, but two kinds of mushrooms, you KNOW I had to come check it out!!!!

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But first, we’re starting off with some deep-fried rings of crunchy goodness — Frittura di Calamari, cazzo! And I am sooo on board with the level of breading here… I could crunch ‘n munch these all night long!!!!

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But now it’s time for the main event! These pillows of chewy goodness come in a nice, creamy sauce, topped with fresh Parmesan for that extra kick. The mushrooms are melt-in-your-mouth, but the duck meat is ground down to the point when you’re missing that unctiousness — I mean, this could be beef or veal, and I wouldn’t taste the difference. (I mighta had a few Menabrea beers by this time, though…)

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Of course, you KNOW we always have room for dessert on Triple B, and this flourless dark chocolate lava cake really takes the cake…so it takes itself? You’ve got some warm, chocolately goodness, with a nice oozy centre, on a bed of cream, with some strawberries and blueberries on the side — I’ve eaten my five pieces of fruit for the week, bro!!!!

SUMMERLICIOUS 2019: Fancy duck confit @ Bymark

It’s the most wonderful time of the year — Summerlicious has come back to Toronto, bro! You know I’m a fan of eating three funky dishes for the price of one…an appetizer, main course and dessert, all for a set price between 23 and 53 bucks. This year, we’re starting off at the high end at Bymark, this funky little Mark McEwan joint in the Financial District. For Summerlicious, they’re rolling out stuff you won’t find on the menu, like these fried green tomatoes with crispy pork belly:

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You know what I say — anything deep-fried has gotta be delicious, and these fried green tomatoes were no exception. The crispy pork belly lived up to its crispiness, and then you’ve got a little freshness from the sour cream, and a nice corn salsa… Not a bad way to get things started!

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Dude, this duck definitely didn’t suck! Nice and roasted, kinda like chicken, with more veggies than I ate all of last month! I mean, they even managed to make Brussels sprouts taste good, and they’re like the Axis of Evil in Flavourtown!!!

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I probably couldn’t tell you the last time I ate a profiterole — what is that, French or something? But when you stuff it with a chocolate stout ice cream, I’m all in. You could put that on a sandale de plage, and it would still taste good!!!

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Now, unlike some fancy-schmancy places, that have like 72 wines and 3 beers to choose from, Bymark actually has a pretty big beer list — and it’s not all Molson, either. I went with a Ball’s Falls Session IPA from Bench Brewing Company, which has some hoppy goodness, but is much more crushable than your average IPA, at just 4.5%. Dude, I could probably crush, like, 17 of these…

Duck confit on a bun for this funky French brunch!!!

Now, I don’t really celebrate Easter — I pretty much eat Peeps 24/7, bro!!! — but I’ll take any excuse to go for brunch that I can get. So, we’re hanging out at Le Paradis, this funky French bistro that’s kinda in the middle of nowhere, on Bedford north of Davenport. This place has got everything on their brunch menu from steak tartare to eggs benny to a raclette cheeseburger — although I see they’ve omitted the beer-braised lamb, which makes me a sad lambda. But we’re still eatin’ good in this neighbourhood!!!

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We’re starting off with moules a la marinière, these PEI mussels steamed with white wine, garlic and onions. Dude, who needs muscles from Brussels when you can have mussels from Charlottetown???

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But you know that was just a light snack in Flavourtown, so now we’re moving on to the main event — a duck confit sammy on a ciabatta with a fried egg on top! It’s like if Italy was facing off against France in the kitchen, and they both laid an egg — which sounds kinda like a soccer game, eh? The duck is nice and tender, you’ve got the crunchiness of the ciabatta, and then that egg oozing all over the place… Man, I’d actually sit through a soccer game if you fed me a few of these!!!

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Now, here’s where we kick brunch up a notch with a pint of Averbode Abbey Ale, this Belgian brew from the 14th century. Well, OK, I don’t think this one was actually brewed in the 1300’s — that would be some pretty skunky beer, bro! But I gotta say, it was a nice, fruity, brunchy beer with a deceptively strong 7.5% kick. I’m not drunk or anything, but I might have led the resto in a round of “Frère Jacques” — sonnez les matines, son!!!

Scaramouche, Scaramouche, will you do the fandango???

Now, I’m not normally one for fine dining, but if you name your restaurant after a line from my favourite Queen song, then you KNOW I’ll be there with a crown on, bro! So we’re hanging out at Scaramouche, this funky joint at the bottom of a condo, a few blocks away from Av & Dav. It’s a little off the beaten path, but dude, if I lived in that building, I’d eat here every day! (Did I mention they’ve got a pasta bar upstairs???)

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So, we’re starting off with an appy that eats like a meal — the Gnocchi Parisienne, with shredded duck confit. Dude, I loves me some duck confit…and this is body by gnocchi, so you know it’s gotta be good! Plus, you’ve got some nice sauteed mushrooms, a duck foie gras jus and winter greens–but it’s the crunchy Parmesan crumbs that makes it!!!

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Now, so many of the main courses here looked super-cala-fragilistic extra delicious, but you know my tiebreaker is always gonna be bacon, so I just had to go with the bacon-wrapped venison. This gamey deer steak was cooked to perfection, a nice medium rare, with all sorts of stuff on the side, including some big ‘ol shrooms and a nice, spicy mustard. You could put that on a flip-flop, and it would still taste good! Now, the Parmesan fries were extra, but you KNOW we’re paying extra for some cheesy potaters, son!!!

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And of course, even after all this grub… I still had room for dessert!!!

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Say hello to my little friend Milk Chocolate Nougat Bar. This three-piece Oh Henry comes with salted peanut brittle and a side swipe of caramel sauce. Dude, I would swipe right on that sauce–right down my piehole, bro!!!

SUMMERLICIOUS 2018: French menage a trois @ Cafe La Gaffe

So, we’re hanging out at Cafe La Gaffe, this funky little French bistro in Baldwin Village. This is another place with tons of Summerlicious options, but I decided to stick with a trio of French classics here–and I definitely wasn’t disappointed!

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So, we’re starting off with some escargot, bro! These slippery little snails are swimming in garlic butter and going whee, whee, whee all the way down my piehole!!!

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Now, I’m definitely no stranger to roasted duck legs, but this has gotta be one of the top five duck confits I’ve ever had! The meat is super-tender, fall-off-the-bone, and that brandy cream sauce is outta bounds, bro! Man, I could probably eat six or seven of these…or however many legs that ducks actually have.

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But you know the drill, we’ve still got room for dessert, dude! This creme brulee was crackly on top, creamy on the bottom, with a couple nice bites of blueberries and a cherry on top! Who needs whipped cream when you’ve got burnt cream, mon cheri???

SUMMERLICIOUS 2018: Why settle for hen one way when you can have it two ways?

So, we’re hanging out at The Living Room, this cozy, upscale, British-style pub inside the Windsor Arms hotel. Can’t say I’ve ever been here before, but when I heard they had duck confit spring rolls, I knew I was gonna shake, waddle and roll my ass up to Yorkville, bro!

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Y’know, my least favourite part of spring rolls is all the veggies they put inside…but you ain’t gotta worry ‘bout that here, cuz it’s pretty much all meat. You’ve got tender, shredded duck inside a wonton wrapper, with a ginger garlic glaze? Shut the quack door!

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But you know that ain’t the only bird that’s flying down my piehole this evening. Dude, this funky joint is serving up hen not one way, but two ways—stuffed AND deep-fried! Don’t get me wrong, I liked the thyme and apricot stuffed thigh on the right…but the buttermilk fried breast is what makes it!

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Of course, you know the drill. When it comes to Summerlicious, you gotta save room for dessert—cuz it’s included in the price, bro! This here’s a Turtle Brownie Cake with salted caramel ice cream. Ain’t nothing wrong with that at all!!!!