Showing posts with label delivery. Show all posts
Showing posts with label delivery. Show all posts

Porchetta & Co. (Toronto) for delivery

Note: Prices in post are based on regular menu prices and may be higher when using delivery services

Is it me, or is everyone jumping onto the fried chicken sandwich bandwagon lately? It’s a thought that fleeted through my head, while going through Porchetta and Co.’s menu that consists of more fowl than swine.

All the choices did make it difficult to decide what we wanted, finally settling on a glutinous dinner of two sandwich combos with two pieces of fried chicken on the side. Needless to say, there was a lot of food and the fries became the casualties – arriving warm and weren’t overly crispy – relegated to being leftovers and tasting much better the next day when they were made crispy in the toaster oven.

We’re certainly not professionals who participate in eating competitions. So, after a sizeable sandwich, a less sizeable piece of fried chicken, and a handful of fries we were FULL. Yet, there wasn’t a gross disgusting feeling; surprisingly, it was a comfortable “clean” fullness despite the plethora of fried foods we just ingested.

The porchetta “house special” sandwich ($16.95 for the combo; $12.95 for just the sandwich) certainly sounds decadent: a combination of slow roasted pork, crispy pork skin crackling, truffle mayo, and parmesan. But then the soft bun is hit with a grainy mustard laced with Frank’s red hot, which cuts through the greasiness to nicely balance out the sandwich. It’s a delicious flavourful bite with the tangy mustard, soft pork, a sudden crunchy bite of skin, and a mellow truffle finish. I can see why this is the house special.

Even with the number of restaurants now serving crispy chicken sandwiches, Porchetta’s OG fried chicken sandwich ($16.95 for the combo) doesn’t disappoint. They swap the breast for a more flavourful thigh meat that’s fried until the edges are simply crunchy - to the point that if it were any crispier the roof of your mouth better watch out. Once again, the heaviness is balanced out with an herby ranch dressing and thick slices of pickles. There’s of course, Porchetta’s favourite condiment - Frank’s hot sauce – sparingly applied so that it doesn’t turn into an overly hot sandwich.

In fact, if you’re afraid of spicy foods, you won’t face with any demons at Porchetta. Even their Nashville hot chicken ($4.95 for a piece) barely registers a sting despite the oily red sauce pooling at the bottom of the container. As spicy hot fried chicken goes, it’s lighter than most, likely drained well before being dipped in the mildly hot oil.

The only disappointment was the buttermilk fried chicken ($4.95 for a piece) that arrived undercooked. Thankfully, my husband and I were sharing everything and had cut it into two, which allowed us to see the pink juices running from the dark pink bone, saving us from any food-related stomach complications later. Therefore, it’s difficult to really judge the chicken since it came sizzling hot from the oven, perhaps a tad overcooked, but yielding tons of crunch.

Putting the undercooked chicken aside, we agreed Porchetta’s sandwiches are certainly worth ordering again. Big heavenly recipes of greasy meats smartly combined with balance condiments; we’re switching from the fast-food chain variety for sure.

Overall mark - 7.5 out of 10


How To Find Them
 Location: Toronto, Canada
 Address: Various locations
 Delivery: Uber and Doordash
Referral Discount Codes
 Support the blog by using my referral code
 UberEats: use eats-ju6ta to get $5 off a $15 order 
 DoorDash: click link to get $20 off

Follow me on twitter to chat, be notified about new posts and more - https://twitter.com/GastroWorldBlog
____________________________
Gastro World's Grading System

  • Anything under 5 - I really disliked and will never order again
  • 6 - decent for delivery and takeout, but there's better
  • 7 - this is good, for delivery and takeout
  • 8 - great for delivery and takeout, it's almost like you're in a restaurant
  • 9 -  wow, it's like I'm eating at a restaurant
  • 10 - I'd happily order this for delivery or takeout instead of dining in any day!


Is That It? I Want More!

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Getting The Cheesecake Factory without the wait


During one of the coldest nights of the winter, a desire for a comforting “American” fare came over the household and the newly opened Cheesecake Factory came to mind. Do we dare brave the negative thirty conditions to battle the Yorkdale crowd without reservations? Not a chance! That’s when my husband discovered Door Dash exclusively delivers for the behemoth chain.

Since we ordered during the weekend evening rush, the app stated it’d take an hour and a half for the meal to arrive. “It’s a little long,” I thought, “But, I really want Cheesecake Factory.” So, we accepted and hunkered down with wine. Much to our surprise, the order arrived in less than 50 minutes.

Nothing says comfort food like fried macaroni and cheese ($14.95), an appetizer that brings the pasta to a whole other level. While the starter was a bit salty, perhaps due to the marinara sauce, the creamy centre was nice and gooey, unlike other ones I’ve tried that contains so much pasta that it becomes dense. The molten centre goes so nicely with the crispy coating. Just share – having one ball is already enough. 



The Cheesecake Factory’s “glamburger” was unexpectedly delicious, especially for delivery. My husband wrote in a request to have the Americana cheeseburger ($17.95) done medium and the thick patty was indeed a light pink upon arrival. With a rich charbroiled taste, the beef held up against all the other toppings.



Moreover, since the secret sauce, melted American and cheddar cheese, and pickles were all relatively salty, it was smart that the rest of the burger was kept neutral to balance it out. With some thinly sliced potato string for crunch, and grilled onions that help give the ingredient sweetness without the harsh sting, it was a surprisingly satisfying burger.

Since the fries were placed in a separate bag, they arrived warm and crispy, despite being delivered. For those who want a healthier side, you can also substitute the fries for a green salad at no additional cost.

Meanwhile, the chicken enchiladas ($18.95) were the only item that arrived cold. Luckily, it’s the one dish that reheats easily and after a minute in the microwave turned into the fragrant gooey dinner I was craving. Arriving three to an order, the corn tortilla held up under the red chile sauce and melted cheese, with the diced chile pieces adding a bit of heat.



Each enchilada was stuffed with plenty of tender chicken pieces, although I would have preferred if they weren’t breaded. The corn salsa on top was delicious and incorporated grilled corn on the cob pieces. A sizeable side of soft black beans and slightly oily but flavourful cilantro rice also comes with the meal.

 

Canada’s first Cheesecake Factory hasn’t shrunk their portion sizes as it crossed the border. We had enough leftovers to feed at least one other person – this would have been enough for a family with two younger children.

Of course, we had to get a slice of cheesecake – having The Cheesecake Factory and not ordering their signature cake would be a shame. The first layer of the tiramisu ($9.95) was the creamy mascarpone generally found in the Italian dessert, followed by fluffy but flavourful cheesecake, finished with a base of coffee cake and graham crumbs. This final layer was left unsweetened to balance out the sugary top of the cake. Just remove the large sweet glob of chocolate frosting on top, as it started to cover the actual cheesy flavours.



If it weren’t for the amount of waste that gets generated, I’d love to have Door Dash deliver The Cheesecake Factory more often. If you want to save yourself time, consider trying it as well. After all, by the time you find a parking spot at Yorkdale (good luck), walk to the restaurant, and wait for a table it could easily be over half an hour – that’s before ordering and receiving your food. Plus, if you click the referral link, you’ll get $10 towards your first purchase. Full disclosure, I’ll earn a $10 credit as well, think of it as a thank you for saving you time! 

Overall mark - 7.5 out of 10


How To Find Them
 Location: Toronto, Canada
 Address: 3401 Dufferin Street (Yorkdale Mall)

Follow me on twitter to chat, be notified about new posts and more - https://twitter.com/GastroWorldBlog
____________________________
Gastro World's Grading System

  • Anything under 5 - I really disliked and will never go back
  • 6 - decent restaurant but I likely won't return
  • 7 - decent restaurant and I will likely return
  • 8 - great restaurant that I'd be happy to recommend
  • 9 - fantastic restaurant that I would love to visit regularly and highly recommend
  • 10 - absolute perfection!


Is That It? I Want More!

Other Gastro World posts similar to this:



The Cheesecake Factory Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Maillard meats delivered to your home


For a person who loves food, I don’t particularly love cooking. It’s not a chore I hate and will cook about twice a week, but all the steps leading up to actually preparing the meal (grocery shopping and prep work) seems to take so much time. Meal kit delivery companies help reduce the effort, but may not be the optimal choice for people who like to create – after all, cooking is an art form combining ingredients to create something new. 

A company that delivers groceries can help save time and effort. Hence, when I was approached by Maillard, a Canadian company supplying premium meats across the country, to experience a selection of their offerings, my inner carnivore did a happy dance.

Maillard prides themselves by offering meat free of artificial colouring – those vibrantly red steaks you can see in grocery markets may not necessarily be natural. Moreover, except for the flattened chicken, everything is prepared and flash frozen in their facilities before being shipped as quickly as possible to ensure fresh products.

Meat is sent in an isotherm cooler packed with dry ice keeping products frozen for 30 hours – it’s quite a scene as you open cardboard box, lift the bags of dry ice and the smoke billows out (just take care not to touch the dry ice). Everything arrives separated and beautifully wrapped … a gift idea for any meat lover in your life.

My first dinner consisted of the flattened chicken ($21.24). Since it was fully prepared, my finishing touch was simply to marinate it in peri peri (a recipe is available on Maillard’s website, but I just used a bottle of Nando’s sauce) and bake the bird following the requisite time included on the packaging. It resulted in a lovely golden juicy chicken that cooked surprisingly fast (45 minutes) since it was flattened.


Using the trimmed boneless chicken breasts ($9.10 for pack of two), I whipped up a quick Cajun chicken for a weeknight meal. Even after fileting them (for a shorter cooking time), the chicken came out surprisingly moist.


Recipes suggest brining the Frenched bone-in pork chop ($6) prior to cooking as the meat is relatively lean and tends to dry out. Despite every intention to follow the advice, life took over and that evening I ended up slathering on an herb meat glaze and baking. Trust me, you don’t need to spend the extra time brining; the pork chop turned out succulent and one of best I’ve ever prepared.  


Since a boneless duck breast ($10.15) was included in the package, I expanded my cooking repertoire at home. Surprisingly, it wasn’t too difficult to prepare – you score the fat, slowly render skin side down in a pan, and finish off in a hot oven with a swish of maple syrup. In my haste to taste the duck I forgot to take a picture of the finished product. Next time, I’d definitely render the skin longer as there was still a bit of chewiness, but the duck meat was delicious and the quality comparable to restaurants.


Maillard’s products labelled as ‘Sélection 1913’ are their best cuts sourced from the highest grades (AAA and Prime), some are even aged 45 – 60 days to further enhance flavours. The 45-day aged boneless ribeye ($20.62) we sampled was fantastic crusted in Montreal steak spice and barbequed. The ribeye had such a lovely marbling throughout and the expected beefy taste (don’t you hate it when a steak looks great but tastes mild?)


If there are specific meats and cuts you’d like, items can be purchased on its own. For better value try their boxes containing 10-40 servings reducing the price per portion and providing variety. One like the ‘All Natural Box’ is $175 and includes steaks, ground beef, pork chop, pork tenderloin, chicken breast, chicken legs & drumsticks, and marinated chicken skewers, all together serving 40 portions.

For those who love great luxurious meats and also want to save time, having Maillard delivery a box to your house may be an ideal treat. And for those who still love to great creative - hopefully, Maillard will let out your inner ‘artist’ so you can transform ingredients and develop a beautiful and delicious dish.

As a special for Gastro World readers, Maillard is offering you 10% off orders $50+ and free shipping! Just use promo code gastro10 on their website.

Disclaimer: The above meat delivery was complimentary. Rest assured, as noted in my mission statement, I will always provide an honest opinion.


How To Find Them
 Location: Toronto, Canada

Follow me on twitter to chat, be notified about new posts and more - https://twitter.com/GastroWorldBlog

VIPS Sushi (Toronto)

VIP Sushi Toronto

As much as I love the experience of dining out and eating dishes at their optimal temperature, sometimes I get lazy and the promise of food in the comfort of my home is so enticing. Not wanting the typical pizza, Thai food or Swiss Chalet, we decided to give VIPS Sushi a chance. Diners rated them highly across the food review networks and the restaurant is close by so I was hoping the sushi would still arrive at its best.

VIPS Sushi Toronto

Undeniably, we didn’t think out our order very well as three of the specialty rolls ($9.99 each) had a tempura shrimp, avocado, cucumber and creamy crab meat base. The differences between each really stemmed from what topped the maki: the spicy dynamite wrapped in nori with the crab meat getting a hit of spicy mayo, the red dragon topped with vibrant tuna, and the rainbow dragon a mixture of avocado, salmon, tuna, and butter fish. Surely the rainbow dragon would have incorporated the ingredients of the other two options.

VIPS Sushi: rainbow dragon roll

VIPS Sushi: red dragon rollVIPS Sushi: spicy dynamite roll

Nonetheless, they were satisfying with the cucumber finely julienned for crunch and ample amounts of imitation crab salad to make the rolls hearty. The shrimp could benefit from being larger (especially in the dynamite) and crunchier, but otherwise they were all tasty.

VIPS Sushi: spicy salmon crunch rollThe spicy salmon crunch roll ($9.99) contained finely chopped salmon incorporated into an excessive amount of tempura bits, so the fish became lost in the mixture. In the future, I’d likely order a plain salmon roll and make it spicy by drizzling some of the sriracha mayo that comes with every roll myself.


Delivery from VIPS Sushi was quick, taking half an hour despite the quoted 45 minutes, and the rolls still really fresh despite the travel time. Moreover, the portions were HUGE and there was plenty of leftovers (tip: to save it for the next day, wrap each roll with plastic wrap. The rice remained soft and didn’t get soggy). Sometimes being lazy has it benefits, I’ve now discovered VIPS Sushi, a great contender for Netflix and chill nights. 

Overall mark - 7 out of 10


How To Find Them
 Location: Toronto, Canada
 Address: 9 Byng Avenue

Follow me on twitter to chat, be notified about new posts and more - https://twitter.com/GastroWorldBlog
____________________________
Gastro World's Grading System

  • Anything under 5 - I really disliked and will never go back
  • 6 - decent restaurant but I likely won't return
  • 7 - decent restaurant and I will likely return
  • 8 - great restaurant that I'd be happy to recommend
  • 9 - fantastic restaurant that I would love to visit regularly and highly recommend
  • 10 - absolute perfection!


Is That It? I Want More!

Other Gastro World posts similar to this:


VIPS Sushi Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Mean Bao Delivery from Uber Eats (Toronto)


Mean Bao delivered with Uber Eats

As Uber enrages taxi drivers, they may soon add fast food delivery services to the list. In late 2015, the tech company launched the Uber Eats function, using their drivers to provide food delivery for numerous restaurants across the city.

Already being an Uber rider, I decided to test out the new app to take advantage of the $10 credit and free delivery being promoted during the 2015 launch. As fate would have it, Mean Bao (a place I’ve been wanting to try for a long time) was delivering during lunch.

Like Uber’s car service, the app was easy to navigate and already linked to my existing account and credit card. In a minute my order was placed with the system providing updates and revised delivery times (earlier than what was originally quoted before ordering). Surprisingly, the driver even met in the lobby of my company’s building; I didn’t need to wait at the nearest intersection as earlier Uber Eats pop-up days had done.


The braised beef bao ($3.95) was still warm containing a hefty slab of tender meat garnished with boiled bok choy, Taiwanese pickles, crushed peanuts and cilantro. Even with the pickles and nuts, the bao was rather soft, I would have liked more textural contrast (perhaps some carrot slivers or crunchier pickles would help). Nevertheless, the beef was well flavoured and the bao fluffy without becoming mushy.  


To make it a full meal, the cold noodle salad ($4.95) was a good addition and lends itself for delivery since it’s already cold. Along with the vermicelli were plump fried tofu puffs, julienned carrots, red cabbage and pickled daikon. The soy dressing was extremely garlicky with a hint of chili in the background. Overall, it would have been good if the garlic was toned down as the raw tang simply overpowered everything.


At this point, the majority of restaurants are in the downtown area, which is a shame when I need to return home to the suburbs. There has been the occasional juicing service or healthy eatery available during the weekends. Sadly, neither of those appeal to me. For those who are working late or too lazy to venture out of their building, a new savior is in town – let’s hope this doesn’t lead to additional protests and gridlock.

Overall mark - 6.5 out of 10


How To Find Them
 Location: Toronto, Canada
 Website: Uber - https://ubereats.com/toronto/
         Mean Bao - http://www.meanbaotoronto.com/

Follow me on twitter to chat, be notified about new posts and more - https://twitter.com/GastroWorldBlog
____________________________
Gastro World's Grading System

  • Anything under 5 - I really disliked and will never go back
  • 6 - decent restaurant but I likely won't return
  • 7 - decent restaurant and I will likely return
  • 8 - great restaurant that I'd be happy to recommend
  • 9 - fantastic restaurant that I would love to visit regularly and highly recommend
  • 10 - absolute perfection!


Is That It? I Want More!

Other Gastro World posts similar to this:


Mean Bao. Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato