Sunday, October 27, 2013

3-in-1 Restaurant Reviews - Toronto

During my weekend at the Vegetarian Food Festival in Toronto, I took advantage of the multitude of veg restaurants in the area to stop by a few of them. If you haven't read my posts about the festival, here are the links for Day 1, Day 2 and Day 3. Some of these restaurants I had heard of already, but Happy Cow definitely helped picking them out. I ended up visiting Kale, The Hogtown Vegan, and Sadie's Diner. I presented them in chronological order, but it turns out it's also in order of preference, enjoy!

In the crazy bussle of Yonge street, Kale is hidden away in a cozy little storefront. The small dining room is a perfect mix of busy and private. Most of the food is buffet style and paid by weight, but there is also packaged wraps, deserts and drinks. Check out the menu here. The place is beautiful, modern and clean. This was my - massive - plate:
I wasn't a huge fan of the peanut-tofu salad (top) but the rest was wonderful. Amazing mushroom and quinoa salad, although it doesn't look that pretty. The perogies (right) were delicious! The filling was sweet potato and quinoa, encased in a gluten free spelt dough and served with sautéed onions. Shepherds pie (middle) was really hearty and had a hint of spicy. Perfectly roasted potatoes (left), and I didn't even use ketchup - that's a big deal! I also had some plain rice (bottom) and steamed kale to cleanse the palate in between bites.
I also got a carrot cupcake to-go :) very good! Overall I was very impressed with the quality of the food here at Kale.

I have heard some great reviews for the Hogtown Vegan so it was definitely on my to-visit list. It's a cute little place with teal and black colored walls, and even a piano in the dining room. I had such a hard time making a decision here, so many choices on the menu! I noticed that they used lots of meat and dairy alternatives in their meals, which were mostly comfort foods. You can check out their dinner menu here.

This was the tempeh Phish N Chips - subbed the chips for some Mac&Cheese. The tempeh was fabulous! I had never tasted tartar sauce before, and it was actually really good. The lemon gave it that perfect kick, although I don't find it tasted very fishy - which is not necessarily a bad thing. The Mac&Cheese (using Daiya cheese) was AMAZING and just a little bit spicy. I could have eaten tubs of it, if only I wasn't going out dancing afterwards... Maybe next time :P

My friend had the Nachos, which were also delicious. The tortilla chips were topped with all sorts of goodness, and I couldn't keep my hands out of her plate. Good thing it was my birthday!

Sadie's diner
I went to Sadie's right before leaving town. The restaurant is settled nicely, a little bit hidden on Adelaide street. It has a cool artsy/retro and vintage look to it with miss-matched furniture and paintings on the wall.

As far as the service goes, I'm sad to say I was slightly disappointed in the -bit too much - casual atmosphere. I do admit I was in a bit of a hurry in the first place, but the service was also very slow. I may just have gotten there at a bad time, but it took about 45 minutes to get my food. I'll give them the benefit of the doubt, but I was really not impressed with my service.

As you should know by now, I love breakfast food, so I chose the Vegan Rancheros served with guacamole. As it was my first time eating rancheros, didn't really know how to eat it, and didn't really recognize most of the toppings. Under the Daiya cheese there was some sort of mush that I assume was made of beans. The tortillas were crispy so I couldn't really turn it into a wrap. I broke off pieces and used them like nachos. Overall, it tasted good, but left me a little underwhelmed. I think I may have to give it another try, and maybe it'll be a totally different experience next time.
I want to hear from you! Have you ever had a disappointing restaurant service? Did you go back and give it another shot?

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