Browsing Category

Food & Recipes

Business Travel, Customer Service Experience, Entertainment, Food & Recipes, Lifestyle talk

Tipping Etiquette in Toronto

September 23, 2016

Tipping EtiquetteIf you are visiting Toronto and you are from a culture where tipping is not the norm, you might be wondering what the appropriate local tipping etiquette might be. Who should you tip, and how much money should you give?

In Canada the tipping culture is similar to in the USA – tips are expected for many staff in the service, hospitality and food and beverage industry. Here are some important tips to keep in mind when it comes to tipping etiquette while visiting Toronto.

In a Restaurant

Unlike some destinations in Europe, a gratuity is not included in the bill at most Canadian restaurants. Instead, you should calculate approximately 15-20% and add that onto your bill. If the service was unsatisfactory, you caTipping Etiquetten give less and if the service was exceptionally good you can give more. You essentially tip based on the service experience.

Sometimes if you have a table with a large group, usually 8 or more, the restaurant will add an automatic gratuity to the bill. Some servers may rely on tips to bump up their wage and may feel frustrated by a large group who take a lot of time and effort to serve but don’t tip.

If you have a poor restaurant experience and you are considering not leaving a tip as a response, consider whether your experience was the fault of the server. If the food was bad or the service was slow because there weren’t enough staff, this is the fault of the kitchen and the manager. Consider asking to speak to the manager so that you can voice your complaints in a constructive way – you might even be offered a discount or a free meal as an apology.

Other Places to Tip

Tipping is also customary in other situations in Canada. You would be expected to tip your taxi driver, valet parking attendant, hotel room attendant, hotel concierge, hairdresser and manicurist. If you visit a spa during your visit to Toronto it is expected that you will tip your spa service provider around 10% of the cost of your treatment. Also, if you go on a guided tour and your guide offers you great service it is good to tip them around 10-15% to show your appreciation. When you are drinking at one of the many great bars in Toronto it is customary to leave around $1 per drink for the bar tender, depending onTipping Etiquette the cost of the drink.

In some situations, there will be a “Tip Jar” on the counter of a business, such as in a coffee shop, cafeteria and sometimes even in retail stores. However, in these situations the tip is optional. You can put a tip in these jars if you have enjoyed great service but you don’t have to – and it won’t be considered rude not to.

It can be tricky at first to remember who to tip while visiting in Canada, but if you are unsure you can always ask a Canadian friend or colleague about the appropriate tipping etiquette. Make sure to carry around a few small bills, loonies and toonies so that you have the right change whenever you need it!

Remember to tip on the sub-total, and not on the taxes!

Business Travel, Family Vacations in Toronto, Fitness and Health, Food & Recipes, Lifestyle talk, Toronto Family Travel

Quick Healthy Snacks when You are Busy

August 8, 2016

Quick Healthy SnacksIt can be incredibly challenging to eat healthy when you are travelling. Whether you are on a long flight, a bus journey or an epic road trip, often the only food available is from convenience stores and fast food outlets. Greasy fast food will not only pack on the calories, it will make you feel bloated and tired when you are in transit. If you can bring along some quick healthy snacks on your trip, you can refuel with nutrients that will give you energy and help you feel great.

Looking to prepare some healthy foods for your next trip but don’t know where to start? Here are a few ideas of some quick healthy snacks:

Dried Fruit

This travel snack ticks all the boxes – it is healthy, tasty and extremely portable. It is also great for kids because it won’t make a mess or cause stains in the car or the plane. There are many great tasting types of dried fruit including dried bananas, apple rings and dried peaches. Look for fruit that has doesn’t have any additives like sugar, colour, flavor or preservatives.

Hard Boiled EggsQuick Healthy Snacks

Having travel snacks that are high in protein is important, because the protein will keep you feeling full for longer. Hard boiled eggs are a great travel snack, so boil up a few before you go and keep them in a container. They can last a long time if you don’t peel the shell, as the egg itself is the perfect wrapper.

Trail Mix

Another great portable healthy snack is trail mix. You can bring it along in a Tupperware container or Ziploc bag and grab handfuls whenever hunger strikes. There are lots of different types of trail mix out available out there in the bulk section of the grocery store. Or, you could make your own by combining the nuts, seeds, dried fruits and other items that you prefer.

Granola BarsQuick Healthy Snacks

A store bought granola bar can be the perfect item for keeping you fueled up when you are on the road. However, when choosing your granola bar be aware that some brands are loaded with sugar that you may as well be eating a chocolate bar! Look for these quick healthy snacks with low sugar and plenty of natural ingredients.

Peanut Butter

Peanut butter is a fantastic food! It offers lots of protein and energy and it’s very portable. You could bring along a loaf of bread and a jar of peanut butter on a road trip and stop for sandwiches whenever you are hungry. You can also bring along some crackers or celery sticks for spreading peanut butter on – whatever tastes good to you. Finally be sure to check out some healthy on the go snacks children love.

These are just some ideas for portable quick healthy snacks that are great to bring with you when you are travelling, so you can satiate your hunger without filling up on junk food and arrive at your destination or furnished apartment in Toronto feeling great.

Business Travel, Downtown Toronto, Fitness and Health, Food & Recipes, Lifestyle talk

The Top Vegan Restaurants Toronto

May 6, 2016

Vegan Restaurants TorontoSometimes vegans can find it difficult to discover a great place to eat, as their options are usually quite limited. However, in the city of Toronto animal-free living is becoming more popular and more and more excellent vegan restaurants Toronto are springing up. There are many great establishments that serve food so delicious that you won’t even notice anything missing. Here are a few of the best vegan restaurants that Toronto has to offer:

Howtown Vegan

If you miss those classic meaty comfort food staples, this is the best spot to enjoy satisfying dishes such as vegan chicken and waffles and mac and cheese. They taste just as good as the original but no animals were harmed in the making of these nostalgic and filling dishes.Vegan Restaurants Toronto

Khao San Road

One of the best Thai food restaurants in Toronto, this spot has a dedicated vegan menu that is complete with curries, garlic tofu, squash fritters and vegan pad Thai. The food is fresh, fragrant, spicy, flavourful and exciting, bringing you the authentic flavours of Thai cuisine.

The Urban Herbivore

This restaurant focuses on serving fresh, simple and delicious vegan fare. The portion sizes are huge and they always use high quality tasty ingredients. It’s also a great spot to grab a quick lunch in the city, as they offer a great selection of sandwiches and baked goods.

Live Organic Food Bar

Live is an all raw vegan restaurant that serves up food that is animal-product-free and totally fresh and uncooked. For example, one of the most popular dishes is the Live It Up Lasagne which is made with raw zucchini noodles, basil pesto, cashew ricotta cheese, garden veggies, Kalamata olives, sun-dried tomatoes and marinara sauce. Check it out for meals that arVegan Restaurants Torontoe as healthy as they are delicious.

One Love Vegetarian

This colourful take-away offers vegan and vegetarian food with a Caribbean twist. It started off as a soup kiosk in the World Café at the Harbourfront Centre food court and its popularity has allowed it to grow into a restaurant of its own. Try the spicy Jamaican pumpkin and pea soup, the caramelized plantain or the basmati rice and lentils.

Bolt Fresh Bar

Vegan Restaurants Toronto

Vegan Restaurants Toronto

This restaurant offers a range of healthy options, including grain bowls, salads, smoothies and juices. Everything is juicy and prepared fresh

and all of the ingredients are sourced from local suppliers. Try the delicious and filling tofu, avocado, kale, quinoa and carrot bowl. When you want a lunch that will leave you feeling nourished and energized – this is the perfect place to stop.

These are just a few examples of the best vegan restaurants Toronto, so you can enjoy a delicious meat free meal. With the vegan lifestyle becoming even more popular there is no doubt that Toronto will have even more great vegan and vegetarian food options available in the future.

Business Travel, Downtown Toronto, Food & Recipes, Vacation Travel

New Restaurants in Toronto

February 24, 2016

Restaurants in TorontoToronto has an exciting and thriving culinary scene and it draws some of the best chefs in Canada and around the world. There are always new restaurants in Toronto opening up in this booming Canadian metropolis and visiting Toronto means that you get to enjoy the best of its gastronomical offerings.
So what are some of the hottest dining spots in the big TO? Here are a few restaurants in Toronto that have opened up recently and are creating a buzz:

Los Colibris
Chef Ella Herrera was born in Mexico and learned to cook from her mother and grandmother. She has recently opened a restaurant so that she can share the traditional Mexican dishes that she loved as a child with the people of Toronto – including warm handmade flour tortillas, tender spicy chicken and savoury roasted poblano peppers. The restaurant is stylish and upscale, but never stuffy – it has a funky and laid back vibe and is perfect for a date or an evening out with friends.Restaurants in Toronto

Boralia
What defines Canadian cuisine? Canada’s culture is a mosaic of influences from around the world, but this restaurant delves deep into the indigenous and early history of Canada to serve dishes that are linked to the origins of our home and native land. You can try pigeon pie or tender squab, or perhaps a bowl of buttery mussels smoked in pine needles. The dishes here are full of heritage, so why not give them a try?

Dandylion
Dandylion is the creative project of chef Jay Carter, who offers up a menu of nine dishes that change almost daily. The portions are generous, the meals are frRestaurants in Torontoesh and flavourful and there is always an option for vegetarians.

Otto’s Berlin Donor
This new sandwich shop in Kensington Market caters to the Torontonian craving for German street food. Try the delicious Berlin doner, which starts with a circular flatbread and is filled with chicken, veal, lamb, fried halloumi cheese or a vegan mix of zucchini, garlic, peppers, secret spices and onions. There is also the much-loved German street food dish Currywurst, a juicy bratwust sausage topped with a spicy tomato-based curry sauce.

Pai Northern Thai Kitchen
Do you love the spicy, fragrant and fresh flavours of Thai cuisine? This restaurant brings the flavours of Thailand to the streets of Toronto. Northern Thai dishes are the focus, such as crunchy fermented crabs and papaya salad or Massaman curry with tender chunks of beef.

These are just a few of the restaurants in Toronto that have opened up, so why not check them out during your visit when staying in your furnished rental?

Business Travel, Community Events, Entertainment, Food & Recipes, Lifestyle talk

Toronto Cafes for Warming Up with a Hot Drink

January 22, 2016

Toronto Cafes for Warming UpAfter walking around Toronto in the winter chill for hours, checking out the attractions, admiring the sights and doing some shopping, you might be in the mood for a hot drink. You can head into one of these lovely Toronto Cafes for warming up with a hot drink whether it be a warm cup of coffee, tea or hot chocolate.

Tealish
If you are passionate about a good cup of tea, you’ll love this beautiful and cosy place. There are several different loose and pre-bagged teas to choose from, so you are sure to find your favourite blend. The staff are tea experts and if you let them know what flavours you like they will be able to recommend the ideal tea for you to try. You can even get a pot and stay for a while if you don’t want to go back out into the winter cold. Check out the tea latte bar and order yourself a London Fog.

Dark Horse Espresso
There are four locations of this great coffee shop throughout the city, so you will never be far froToronto Cafes for Warming Upm your next delicious cup of coffee. They offer delicious drinks and a great range of yummy and filling snacks and treats, as well as reliable fast Wifi. The décor is cosy and rustic and it’s a great atmosphere in which to relax after a busy day of exploring Toronto.

The Rooster Coffee House
In the east of the city you will find the Rooster Coffee House, a lovely place that feels like home. They offer really great coffee within a welcoming atmosphere and they also have a delicious selection of baked goods. You’ll love it so much that you won’t want to venture out into the cold again.

BivyToronto Cafes for Warming Up
This is another great cosy little café with only eight tables and a warm and welcoming vibe. It serves up delicious lunches as well as great coffee and hot drinks. Check out the pancakes and the open top sandwiches – perfect for filling up your belly when it is cold and dreary outside.

Tango Palace Coffee Company
Tango Palace is one of the cosiest cafes on the east end, so when the winter chill gets too much for you it’s the best place to warm up with a hot drink. It is a neighbourhood institution – being around for 17 years and offering a huge range of drink and food options.

Boxcar SocialToronto Cafes for Warming Up
This coffee shop is set within a warm and inviting two storey house and it has a great selection of high quality coffees. The décor is rustic – the tables are made from thick cut raw wood and the walls are exposed brick. The staff are friendly and enthusiastic and will make you feel comfortable as you hide from the cold.

Sip your favourite hot drink at our Toronto cafes for warming up and let it warm you up from the inside. Savour the bustling atmosphere and welcoming vibe of these great hangout spots.