Jump to content


participating member
  • Posts

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Everything posted by cwyc

  1. Other than space, what do you like about cooking with induction surfaces? Do you find it better or more responsive than gas?
  2. cwyc


    I went to b/Side Wine and Bar. I really enjoyed their crab cakes. Similar to Arome - tapas-style/small sharing plates. Resto is next to Benitz Bistro on Somerset.Benitz
  3. cwyc

    Ottawa Chinese

    And since I'm on a roll, if you're looking for other Asian - for Thai go to Phenom Penh in Kanata. It's a bit of a drive if you're going from downtown, but they can make it quite spicy. But you have to be careful what to choose on their extensive menu because some of the items are very much catered to the Cdn palate. Another one that is more central is Siam Bistro on Wellington. I wouldn't vouch for any other ones.
  4. cwyc

    Ottawa Chinese

    Like others, I too would recommend May's Garden. But chinese cuisine can be quite varied, and May's specializes in northern dishes, which it does very well. If you are looking for Cantonese cuisine, I would recommend Jo Moon Ting. It's classically cantonese. The menu itself is quite varied because you will find lunch-type offerings like rice and bbq'd meats - chicken, duck, pork - the classics. You'll also find other lunch offerings such as congee/jook and fried noodles. But their dinner menu is also quite nice and the dishes coming out of the kitchen will more than rival greasy spoon Chu Sing. Chu Sing is fine in a pinch, but that's only because the selection is somewhat limited around Ottawa. I also like the fact that they offer their own ground black sesame soup dessert and sweet ginger milk. Nice touch. So as far as Chinese is concerned, for northern, go May's; for cantonese go Jo Moon Ting. Oh and if you want dim sum, well, the selection is somewhat limited. For sheer volume, go to Chu Sing. Can't say much more than that.
  5. cwyc

    PBS program

    Found it. Entreé to Asia, book and tv show by the same name. Thomas Robson.
  6. I am trying to find a show that used to air on PBS about seven or eight years ago. I used to watch this south east asian/asian cooking show hosted by a larger 40ish caucausion man. He had a lot of knowledge of specialized asian ingredients; travel to the destination sometimes; and then go back to his studio kitchen to recreate the dishes. For some reason, the word/title "Express" sticks in my mind, but I can't be certain if that is correct. Does anyone know of such a show?
  7. Shelves are very easy to adjust and remove. That was another big feature for me because when we entertain, I invariablly will have a large tray of something. My second shelf is fit narrowly below the top shelf, so I can easily insert a tray on it without having to lose space above or below. The wine rack is great, but I have removed it because I don't drink a whole lot of alcohol. Although, I do find it handy when you are entertaining, and you have trays and plates in the fridge, and need space for the vino. I'm not sure about the reliability part as I have had it for less than a year, but so far so good. The salesperson told us (I live in Canada) that the same manufacturer produces all the big name fridges...Whirpool, Amana, Kenmore, etc. So you are not really getting a competitive advantage one fridge over another. Unless that is, you are going high end like or industrial like SubZero. The down side of the glass shelves is that it may scratch, or so the salesperson told us. I have yet to have that problem. I figured its tempered, and plastic shelves are just as likely to scratch as well. As for where it is manufactured, my understanding was that it was shipped from NZ. That's what the salesperson told me because he said the only problems they have encountered sometimes is that it may get dented in-transit. We did not have that problem. They would replace the door or whatever anyway. I also like the fact that you can choose the rounded edge finish or the straight, boxy edge finish of the doors. I chose the boxy, 90 degree finish.
  8. I bought a Fisher and Paykel fridge last year. It is the 17ish cubic feet, with bottom freezer drawers. There were several things that sold me on it: 1) the freezer drawer set up allows me to compartmentalize everything. Frozen meals in the top right hand drawer; breads in the top left drawer, smallish flat items like my stack of banana leaves for the narrow, middle drawer; frozen meats, seafood, vegetables for deep, bottom drawer. 2)fridge with the multiple wide, sliding shelf adjustments allows me to insert large party trays 3) glass shelves just sturdier and nicer than the standard plastic ones available everywhere else 4)"book ends" on the fridge door prevents glass bottles from shifting around when opening and closing 5) one dozen egg carton fits perfectly into one of the cubbies on the fridge door 6) no fingerprints show up on the fridge doors We are a family of two, so space is not an issue. However, I can see that if you are a larger family or shop bulk, you may run out of room; unless you have a separate freezer chest. Other than, I'm pretty happy with my purchase. Although, I did read a review somehwere (Consumers Report??) that didn't rate it well because of the freezer drawers. For me, however, the compartments in the freezer was the biggest draw and deciding factor in the purchase.
  9. I'm not sure why many people feel the need to avoid downtown Chinatown. There are some pretty solid restaurants there. Bright Pearl, while not necessarily innovative, offers standard, classical dim sum items. If you're looking to drive out to Richmond Hill, Ambassador Chinese Cuisine on 280 West Beaver Creek Road is both traditional and good, in terms of its classical dim sum offerings. This is in the suburbs of Toronto, so it is set up for family-style dining. You will also find the old fashioned sweet dessert that is made of round balls of glutinous rice rolled in sugar and chopped peanuts. It's one of those items that was available forty or fifty years ago, that doesn't show up in any other dim sum establishment I have frequented. Ambassador is located within a cluster of Chinese businesses; but then again, Richmond Hill is pretty much ALL chinese.
  10. Just got back yesterday from Rome. Discovered Gusto - a complex containing restaurant, pizzeria, wine bar, cheese shop, sandwich shop, kitchen store. I dined at Osteria Della Frezza. It is part of the Gusto mini empire. Location is Via Della Frezza, 13. Here is the website: Gusto Osteria Della Frezza serves a fine selection of cheeses and honey, starting with the milder, softer cheeses to the harder ones. Good way to sample eight to ten different types of cheeses without having to buy it at the cheese shop. Also, served a nice sampling of salumi - proscuitto, etc.
  11. Was that statement a slag, or one that is supposed to denote cameraderie? Hmmm, I'm not sure whether to be offended or to laugh.
  12. This isn't a restaurant question, but does anyone know of a good place to get knife sharpening in Ottawa?
  13. Another good place for traditional Peking duck with all of the fixings is May's Garden at the corner of Preston and Somerset. It is about a few blocks away from the Chinatown Somerset drag. It's a good place to sample your way through northern Chinese cuisine. 24 hour notice required to order the duck.
  14. Very helpful information. Thanks. I'm thinking now I will use soapstone for my baking centre and marble for the other counter surfaces. I really love what you have done with the backsplash. The green ceramic tiles make a very nice punctuation in the overall look and feel of your kitchen. Did the company who made your cabinets also build the panels for your fridge and dishwasher? Did you get the cabinet company to match the paint from the vent?
  15. Hi Jennifer: I've just discovered this thread on your kitchen reno. I'm really fascinated with all the work and detail you have done, partly because I too am embarking on a kitchen reno of a 1920s home. My house is a two-story Arts & Crafts style, built around 1928 (I think), and was last renovated back in the 70s. We are ripping the kitchen out, and like you, we are trying to stay true to the character of the house. Your kitchen design elements are almost IDENTICAL to everything we will be doing - shaker cabinets, subway tiles, etc. I have several questions for you: 1) I am still waffling about what material to use for the backsplash. There is always the debate about maintaining the true character of the 1920s home vs. modernizing it somewhat. I was originally planning on using straight, white subway tiles, but I have seen some new translucent glass ones on the market that are jadeite-green in colour. But now, after seeing the small little squares of green glass intermixed with yours, I was wondering if you could post a bigger picture of it? 2) Since you are a pastry chef, I figure you can expertly answer this question about soapstone counters. I would like to mix different materials, marble, soapstone, etc. Do you prefer soapstone for your pastry area instead of marble? Is it smooth enough or is marble smoother? Also, I have been advised by everyone and their dog not to use marble & soapstone because it is too porous, but I absolutely LOVE those materials. Are you concerned about staining and the porosity of your counters? 3) Where did you get your hoodfan? Is that a cover that you designed yourself? Your kitchen looks great. It's really coming together.
  16. I like North Garden on University Crescent off of Pembina Highway. It seems like it's been there forever, but looks like they may have renovated. Regardless, food is solid.
  17. I've been having this ongoing debate with myself about what constitutes the perfect pastry crust. Some people will only use butter, and nothing else. Others will opt for adding SOME shortening to the pastry mixture in order to ensure a flaky texture. Especially, if you are making pie dough such as pâte brisée or pâte sucrée, you would use only butter. Here is my quandary. Most recipes for the classic Canadian Butter Tart use a combination of both butter and shortening. By way of background, there is a "raging" debate among Canadians as to what constitutes the perfect butter tart: runny filling vs. firm filling, walnuts vs no walnuts, raisins vs. no raisins, flaky crust vs. firm crust. Which brings me to the issue of what constitutes the perfect crust. Despite all the "traditional" butter tart recipes I have found that call for shortening AND butter in the crust, I am torn about using shortening in ANYTHING at all. It kind of goes against my principles. What are your thoughts about making the perfect pastry crust?
  18. I also forgot to add Ceylonta located at Somerset and Bank (south of your hotel). It's a hole in the wall, but quite cozy and comfortable inside. Specializes in Sri Lankan cuisine - I highly recommend this place.
  19. Here are a couple of recommendations for restaurants within the vicinity of your hotel: Tapas/small plates: 222 Lyon located at 222 Lyon(!) - has been around for awhile and people love it. Aroma Maze and Wine at 239 Nepean - many delicious greek small plates. Japanese: Genji at 175 Lisgar Ave - many people seem to like it; I personally think it is only okay. Seafood: Whalesbone at 430 Bank Street - features oysters Breakfasty/quick lunch: Scone Witch at 388 Albert Street (corner of Albert & Bay) - cute little café; very disorganized, but maybe that adds to the charm of the place Black Cat Café at 93 Murray Street in the Byward Market - innovative cuisine; somewhat similar to Domus Elgin Street Freehouse @ 296 Elgin Street - bistro-esque/winebar These places are all within walking distance of between 10 - 20 minutes from your hotel. Let us know how you get on.
  20. Thanks for your suggestions. This is exactly what I am looking for.
  21. I am going to be visiting Ireland for the very first time. I will be there between Tuesday and Friday. I will be in Dublin and then travelling up to county Armagh. I have been reading the forums for all of the recommended places (Cork, Limerick, Kerry seem very interesting), but given my time limitations and the fact that I am travelling north, what are some of your suggestions for the biggest bang for my buck, so to speak. If it is at all possible, I would love to travel down south. Right now, I have suggestions to try Clonakilty black pudding, Annascaul black pudding, Sheridan's Cheesemongers, Temple Bar Food Market. Can you give me suggestions about what I can do and where to go give my time limitations?
  22. I'm not convinced that there is a best one around. They are all about the same to me, but every once in a while I will get stuck on one and keep going till I get sick of it. The place across from Yangtze, you mentioned, is called Chu Sing. As far as I am concerned, they are a real greasy spoon. But they deliver the most volume and so it beats Yangtze where you have to wait and wait till they push out a few meagre carts. I would suggest going to Great Wall, which is located in the red brick building adjacent Yangtze. They do the cart thing as well, but when it gets past the peak hours, they offer the menu-ordering dim sum option. The other alternative is go to to Mandarin Ogilvie located in the east end. I don't believe they have the menu thing for dim sum, but they have a few interesting south-east asian items not found in Chinatown. And there is also the northern Chinese restaurant, May's further down Somerset (past Chinatown), which has menu-order dim sum. Not a traditional dim sum place as it is specializes in northern Chinese cuisine (dim sum is cantonese-based), but they have some good items there too.
  23. cwyc

    Dessert Party

    Absolutely beautiful and positively impressive. I admire the time, energy and dedication to creating such a spread.
  24. Thanks, I'm sold on Heaven on Seven. Definitely will be going there.
  • Create New...