The Layover – Toronto – In Review
Sorry for the lack of posts (only 2 last week!), I am transitioning from my internship in Maryland back to school in Kansas with a pit stops back home in Arizona and in Dallas for Christmas for the next couple of weeks! This past week has been filled with finishing up stuff for work, packing, and getting ready a whole lot of travel!
But I was talking to a friend late last week and he asked me why I spent so much time writing about Anthony Bourdain’s TV shows. I told him that the answer is quite simple: I like them. But beyond that, Anthony Bourdain’s TV shows (No Reservations, The Layover, and soon to be Parts Unknown) have been an integral part of me desiring to travel. For years I have watch Bourdain’s shows and slowly I have desired more and more to travel and slowly I traveled more and more.
I hope this does the same for you…. even if you don’t catch his show, reading about some of the awesome places and experiences just might help cultivate that desire within. That desire that will not let you rest until you see all the world has to offer.
My Favorite Places Tony Went:
1) St. Lawrence Market – The oldest market in Toronto, which is obviously the best place to get an instant feel for the culture! ALWAYS LOOK FOR MARKETS! This particular market is home to the Carousel Bakery, known for affordable and delicious sandwiches! The peameal and bacon sandwich looks fantastic!
2) Kensington Market - Unlike the St. Lawrence Market, the Kensington Market is not just a single market, but a community; an area of Toronto. It is compared in the show with Manhattan’s lower east side. Toronto is a big city with many cultures from the world all represented. The Kensington Market area is where all of these cultures (little Italy, little India, Chinatown) are connected. This is the central hub and where you want to go if you are in Toronto!
3) The Black Hoof – Described by locals as a staple of Toronto, the Black Hoof is central to understanding the Toronto food scene. However, it is definitely a restaurant I’d have to save up for. Creative and unique, but not pretentious… they are experimental in how they approach their food. They even have that “horse tartare” dish that makes us americans feel quite uncomfortable. It’d be hard for me to eat horse… its just not an animal I normally think of as food.
4) Bacchus Roti - Roti is a flat bread popular in many parts of the world. Here they stuff it with just about anything you want, especially curries and jerk chicken! If you like spicy, you’ll enjoy this!
My Big Takeaways:
1) Did you know that Toronto is the 5th largest city in North America? I’ve only been to Toronto once, but I wouldn’t have guessed how big it actually is! And where cities have size, they usually have good food and culture.
2) A funny anecdote from a local on the show: “Canada could have been the greatest country on Earth by having American technology, British culture, and French cuisine. But instead they have American culture, French technology, and British cuisine.” Just goes to show you how fun Canadians are. Politeness and humor go a long way in canada!
I wish I had known about some of these places when I went to Toronto. We did find a small english pub to hangout in and watch a hockey game (which is much different with canadians… it was actually something I cared about for a few brief minutes), but overall we just did not know where to go to find anything! Oh well, I guess that’s just a good excuse to go back in the future!
Have you ever been to Toronto? What was your impression?