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Curbside Cookbook Takes Street Food from Truck to Table


Curbside Cookbook Adam Hynam-Smith El Gastronomo Vagabundo Food Truck

Chef Adam Hynam-Smith’s Curbside cookbook features recipes he’s perfected on his El Gastrónomo Vagabundo food truck, as well as at pop-up events (photos: Whitecap Books)

Political and bureaucratic roadblocks have conspired to stifle a Toronto street-food scene that not long ago seemed ready to explode. But that shouldn’t stop you from sampling some delicious food truck eats. Just pick up a copy of Curbside: Modern Street Food from a Vagabond Chef, the debut cookbook by Adam Hynam-Smith, chef and co-owner of El Gastrónomo Vagabundo, generally acknowledged as Ontario’s first gourmet food truck. Though he’s now based in the Niagara region, Australian-born Hynam-Smith has also cooked in Morocco, France, England and Thailand: these global influences pervade his dishes, from crispy cod tacos with smoked pineapple and habanero to braised pork hock steamed buns to son-in-law eggs. (The book also includes a smattering of dishes by guest chefs who’ve inspired Hynam-Smith’s cooking.)


Amazing Day Trips from Toronto: Niagara

By Eva Voinigescu

Day Trips from Toronto Niagara

Day Trips from Toronto: Niagara Falls (Photo: Ashwin Kumar)

Founded over 200 years ago, the historic town of Niagara-on-the-Lake is your starting point for taking in the sights and tastes of the Niagara Region’s world-class attractions. The village’s tree-lined streets are perfect for strolling and home to beautifully restored buildings, fine shops, B&Bs, spas and restaurants. Fort George, a major War of 1812 site, offers an educational experience while the annual Shaw Festival is perfect for theatre lovers. (more…)

Is This the End for the Maid of the Mist?


Maid of the Mist at Niagara Falls (Photo: caruba)

The famous Maid of the Mist boat company, which has offered tours of Niagara Falls since 1846, was unsuccessful in renewing its lease with the Niagara Parks Commission (NPC) this week, losing out to a U.S.-based boat tour company. (more…)

The SkyWheel: Niagara Falls, Ontario

Every Friday we feature an inspirational travel photo of a Canadian destination taken by one of our readers.

Why we chose it: We almost didn’t recognize Niagara Falls’ SkyWheel from this angle. Bathed in warm light, it looks almost like a yellowing photograph of a Victorian-era Ferris wheel—if it weren’t for the sleek enclosed (and heated!) carriages. (more…)

Foodie Excursion: Niagara-on-the-Lake


© 2011 Creative Media

A foodie adventure is always a great reason to travel. The pretty waterfront Victorian town of Niagara-on-the-Lake, at the heel of Ontario’s greenbelt, has a wealth of wonderful restaurants and shops that make use of local produce and wineries—especially during the autumn harvest. There is a lot you can learn from a city just by the food and the people who create the dishes.

Get the map. (more…)

10 Amazing Canadian Fall Vacations

Okanagan Valley ©Tourism BC/JF Bergeron

Fall is the perfect time for forest hikes, Sunday drives, wine tours and tucking into autumn harvest meals. But did you know it’s also prime polar-bear-viewing season? From our favourite foliage tours to some unexpected adventures, we’ve rounded up the best fall getaways Canada has to offer. (more…)

10 Ontario Hot Spots for Fall Colours

Photo courtesy of Ontario Tourism

By Merle Rosenstein

Fall evokes images of warm woolen sweaters, steaming hot chocolate and fresh apple crumble. In Ontario the end of summer is heralded by an eruption of colour—oranges, reds and yellows painted across treetops—and the gabble and squawk of birds as they migrate south. Autumn is a time of agricultural bounty in the province, displayed in farmers’ markets and at roadside stands: MacIntosh, Royal Gala and other tempting apple varieties are ripe for picking.  The drama of the season and the cool weather makes this a perfect time for a vigorous hike in the country. In the cities and towns, calendars are bursting with events from film and literary festivals to ghost walks and fall country fairs


Winieries and Distilleries across Canada

Wine Region Photo: Canadian Tourism Commission

Italy and France are usually the first two countries that come to mind when wine regions are mentioned. But Canada has quite a few wineries and distilleries that boast some competition and enhance your stay in the country.  Here are a few of our favourites across the nation. (more…)

Niagara—Take a Tour

See all that the region has to offer, including the awe-inspiring natural world wonder that has royalty, celebrities, honeymooners and globetrotters all hankering for a view.
—By Viviane Kertész

Chariots of Fire Niagara Falls Tour offers a $60 round-trip excursion that includes visiting either the Maid of the Mist or the Skylon Tower, free time at the Falls and Niagara-on-the-Lake, picture stops, plus a complimentary tasting at Magnotta Cellars, returning to Toronto by 5 p.m.

Gray Line Niagara Tour operates several first-class sightseeing packages from $95 including a drive through the orchard-laden Niagara Peninsula, boarding the Maid of the Mist and a winery stopover in Niagara-on-the-Lake. Pricier options feature helicopter trips.

In operation since 1978, the
Niagara Falls Day Tour lets you explore either Pillitteri Estates Winery or Reif Estate Winery, scenic stops for photos, a ticket to the Maid of the Mist and two free hours at the Falls for $69.

By train, hop aboard VIA Rail Canada from Toronto’s Union Station (65 Front St. W.). By car, take the Gardiner Expressway from downtown Toronto, which becomes the Queen Elizabeth Way (QEW) outside the city and stretches all the way to Niagara Falls.

Niagara—More Attractions and Shows

Uncover more hot attractions and catch a show or two in the Niagara Region. —By Viviane Kertész

Niagara Parks Botanical Garden

Niagara Parks Botanical Gardens

A 10-minute drive north of the Falls, the Niagara Parks Botanical Gardens display 40 hectares of blooms like daffodils and magnolias, plus a world-famous garden featuring 2,400 roses.

The Butterfly Conservatory

Butterfly Conservatory

On the Botanical Gardens’ grounds, the Butterfly Conservatory contains 2,000 tropical winged creatures taking flight at all stages of life among lush, equally exotic greenery.

Niagara Apothecary

Niagara Apothecary

Walk through time’s doors at the
Niagara Apothecary, where retired pharmacists are on-hand to share their expert knowledge about the history of the profession.

Niagara Floral Showhouse

Niagara Floral Showhouse

Orchids, succulents and geraniums enchant green thumbs and non-gardeners alike at the Niagara Floral Showhouse, where 70 tropical songbirds free-fly amid foreign plant species.


Niagara—Top Stops for Food, Tea and Candy

Treat yourself to a locally sourced meal or a light snack in Niagara. —By Viviane Kertész

Chef Andrew Dymond dishes up local flavour with flare at Escabeche

Chef Andrew Dymond dishes up local flavour at Escabèche.

Locavores rejoice at Escabèche at the Prince of Wales Hotel, where chef Andrew Dymond perfectly plates the county’s bounty. Sommelier Fred Gamula can advise a stellar pick from the resto’s 8,000-bottle cellar.

French dishes inspired by the best of Canada’s West Coast and the Niagara area are on the table at elegant Tiara Restaurant at Queen’s Landing thanks to ultra-capable chef James Olberg.

Eating at Elements On The Falls is the next best thing to picnicking on a magic carpet over the cascading water. Savour foods with an artisan twist amid unfussy elegance.

Indulge in the Victorian-era tradition of afternoon tea in the Drawing Room of the Prince of Wales Hotel.

Afternoon tea at the Prince of Wales Hotel.

Delightful tiers of raisin scones, petit-fours, crustless cheddar-and-chutney sandwiches and jasmine tea await at the Drawing Room of the Prince of Wales Hotel.

At retail complex Table Rock is Pop & Lolly’s (6650 Niagara Pkwy., 1-905-358-3268), a can’t-miss candy stop. There’s always a Lollyologist on duty handcrafting lollypops, confectionary apples or the shop’s famous caramel corn.

Niagara—Find a Winery

Discover the fruits of the Niagara region with a tour of the area’s wineries. You won’t leave without taking home a bottle—or several!
—By Viviane Kertész

The barrel cellar of Jackson-Triggs Niagara Estate Winery.

The barrel cellar of Jackson-Triggs Niagara Estate Winery (photo by Linda Luong).

Like most wineries in the Niagara Peninsula, Jackson-Triggs Niagara Estate Winery offers tours of their cellar, tastings and the possibility to pick up Vintners’ Quality Alliance (VQA) bottles available exclusively on their property. Oenophiles are spoilt for choice at this mod Douglas-fir-and-aluminum agro-building that houses vintages aged in Canadian, French and Hungarian oak barrels.

Situated on the sloping hillside of the famed Beamsville Bench, Thirty Bench Vineyard & Winery earns its street cred through production methods like hand-harvesting.