Halo-Halo

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Not too long ago I tried my first halo-halo. My sister’s boyfriend is Filipino and I’m always open to food from other cultures! Halo-halo literally means “mixed together” and that’s kind of the basic concept of this dessert drink. This particular one had taro ice cream, shaved ice, evaporated milk, cereal, jello, coconut and more.

I’m interested to know what other interesting drinks there are out there in other cultures. I’ve had mango lassis, Persian doogh’s but I’d love to drink/eat my way through other eclectic drinks. What do you recommend?

Luckyrice’s First Toronto Cocktail Party

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On Wednesday, Nash and I hit up the inaugural Luckyrice cocktail event at Berkeley Church in Toronto. Luckyrice is an organization that loves to share Asian culture through food and drink. They have events in LA, San Francisco, New York and Miami and decided to test out Toronto. I find our city is a little unique and the exploration of Asian culture is so common here that I’m not sure we need another event for it.
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The event was sponsored by Bombay Sapphire, so all the drinks were gin based. We arrived around the VIP door opening at around 7pm and it was already rammed with people. There was at least a 10 minute line for most drinks. We also arrived with an empty stomach (which probably wasn’t the best decision). There were appetizers being served but the servers were swarmed by people as soon as they came out. We tried a few drinks before we left to go fill our empty stomachs:

DSCF1578The Rivoli’s “His Eminence”: Bombay Sapphire East gin, Marini & Rossi Rosso, Lemon spiced chinkiang & rice wine reduction, honey syrup.

DSCF1580The Rivoli’s “Delicate Warrior”: ST. Germain liquer, Bombay Sapphire East gin, Gekkeikan Plum wine.

DSCF1587Rebel & Demon’s “Mao’s Punch”: Bombay Sapphire East gin, strawberry thai basil white peppercorn syrup, lemon juice, rhubarb bitters.

DSCF1593Brassaii’s “6 shooter”: Bombay Sapphire East gin, aperol, watermelon and jalapeno shrub, dillon’s bitter lime, lime juice, fresh basil.

DSCF1584Out of all of them our favourite was the Mao’s Punch from R&D. It fit the summery weather and contained a perfect amount of sweetness that made it easy to go down.

This Water Is From Iceland

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My parents went on a trip and had a layover in Iceland for a few days. They brought me back a bottle of Icelandic Glacial water. At first, I couldn’t decide if I wanted to leave it sealed as a souvenir forever or drink it. I decided to choose the later. I’ve been trying to get out of the habit of collecting things without using them. Things are meant to be used, played with, eaten, whatever or they don’t have a place in my tiny apartment. Moving out on my own has showed me that for sure.

Bottled water is a strange concept for people that actually live in Iceland because of their ample supply of fresh water. I think the concept must mainly exist to sell to tourists and abroad.

Anyways, I decided to play water connoisseur (this is an actual job someone actually does by the way). The result was that it tasted like… nothing. Which doesn’t mean that the water isn’t different than our water. Our water indeed tastes like something, usually like the bottle, or fridge, or has a tiny bit of sweetness. This really tasted nothing. Does that mean it’s more pure? I don’t know. Nash drank some and thought it tasted like mineral water, which it indeed is.

Do different waters taste different to you? What is your favourite? I want to know! I should ask for a bottle of water as a souvenir from everywhere so I can drink the waters of the world.

Beer From Gigantic Brewing

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I couldn’t resist buying this beer from Gigantic Brewing Company because it has a robot on it! The craft brewery is based in Portland Oregon and have other robot beers but this particular IPA is year round.

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I also adored the B-Side Brewing label that described the collective as a record label but for beer. Hope to try some more cool beers from them soon.

This particular IPA was super bold and dark. It’s definitely not for the faint of heart and packs a punch like the robot on the label.

Recommended Ciders: Brickworks & Okanagan Pear

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A lot of the times I prefer cider to beer because I find them more drinkable with meals. Like beers, I’ve been looking to try more Canadian-made craft beers rather than the mass-produced kinds. My recent favourites are Brickworks Premium Dry Cider and Okanagan’s Dry Pear.

The Brickworks also comes in a semi-sweet variety (which I haven’t tried yet). They are made with 100% Ontario apples Their site says that “No apple in our cider travels further than 300 kilometres from the tree to the Ciderhouse.” 5% of all their profits also go to environmental organization Evergreen. Their apple cider is perfectly balanced in term of sweetness. It goes down easy like apple juice but doesn’t feel too sugary.

While Okanagan makes an apple cider I decided to try the pear. On their website there are actually a variety of fruit ciders. Anyways the pear cider was nice and crisp. It wasn’t like the Sir Perry Pear cider that was way too sweet, the Okanagan balanced the sweetness as well as Brickworks.

With both these ciders I didn’t feel like I was having some “girly” drink. These were authentic to the fruit flavour but tart enough to be an adult drink.