Tag Archives: soft shell crab

TORONTO’S TOP TAKEOUT: Softshell crab sammy + sticky chicky wings

Now, you really can find just about any kind of food in this city — even with all the restaurants shut down for dine-in. So tonight, I was craving Vietnamese bar food — I’m talking real-deal banh mi, maybe with some sticky Asian wings, and a nice IPA to wash it all down? Yes, there is a place for that, just north of College St in Little Italy… this is Pinky’s Ca Phe!

pinky's_sticky_wings (2)

Now, you gotta love the old-school takeout boxes and sandwich bags — that tells me this joint is legit! These sticky wings are glazed in a garlic fish sauce, with some fried garlic for that extra vampire-killing goodness. Only spice here comes from the garnish, with pickled chilies and fresh holla-atcha-penos — I definitely needed a cold beer to beat that heat!

softshell_crab_banh_mi (10)

Now, at this joint they’re taking your traditional banh mi — a great, chewy baguette, with pickled carrots, daikon and cilantro — and then they’re adding an extra-special ingredient: deep-fried, crunchalious, soft-shell crab! Man, you do not see that crustacean very often this far north of Baltimore… and that smoked oyster donkey sauce and chili jam really kick it up a notch!!!!

henderson's_sobol_ipa (4)

Now, this place isn’t just serving up some righteous bar food — they’re also delivering real-deal beers, done dirt cheap! This $6 tallboy hazy session IPA is a collaboration between Henderson Brewing and the Society of Beer Drinking Ladies; nice and hoppy, with a citrusy, grapefruit finish. And, at just 4% it sure is sessionable — I could crush, like, 17 of these, son!!!!

It’s like a culinary Cuttlefish of Cthulhu in Flavourtown!

So, we’re hanging out at Ebisu, this funky Japanese joint on Queen Street West, just like a block or two from University Avenue. Now, this place has got sushi, they’ve got ramen, but they’re also serving up all kindsa crazy stuff that I’ve never even tried before, like this funkalicious Flavourtown fishfuck—BBQ cuttlefish, bro!

bbq_cuttlefish (4)

Now, the last time I tasted cuttlefish, it was spraying me from the stage of the Opera House. But this was a totally different beast here. It’s got the texture of calamari, grilled up Japanese style, all chewy and rubbery, but the tentacles are totally what makes it. I actually didn’t need to eat more than one of these, cuz they give you like 17 pieces, bro!

crab_and_tongue (1)

Of course, that wasn’t the only seafaring creature I shoved down my piehole. One of their monthly specials was the soft-shell crab, served up crispy with some mushrooms on the side. It was kind of hard to pull this guy apart with just a fork, but once you got to the meat inside, it was well worth the effort!

beef_tongue (3)

But this has gotta be the piece de resistance, right here. Now, my brother from another lover Anthony Bourdain is always going on about beef tongue—it’s pretty much his go-to taco, bro! So when I saw the BBQ beef tongue, I knew I had to try it. But here’s what I wasn’t expecting…they give it to you raw, and then you gotta cook it up yourself like some Fine Young Cannibal! But at least it’s like having your own personal grillsus, with this mini hibachi here. Turns out I like my lengua extra crispy. Who knew?