Toronto: all wonderful (except the poutine)

Actually, we didn’t try the poutine. Yeah, I am the lady who always tries the local foods but…

it just looks regurgitated.

Oh, did I mention we just came back from a flash trip to Toronto? I mean, what would make sense with me about to start a new job is that that I would rest up and spend a few days getting my life in order, maybe organize some things around the apartment.

Nope, didn’t do that.

Instead we took a short flight to the most excellent city of Toronto for a not-at-all low budget trip, a trip in which we did not eat any poutine.

Instead, we ate scrumptious, juicy momo in Parkdale, and toothy udon in Little Tokyo.

It was really quite the sprint through the city.

We started our Sunday by going to a service at St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church in Scarborough. The simplicity of the church (built in 1849) was matched by modesty of the service.

Here’s the church cemetery with a tiny house where the sexton used to live.

I am especially interested in local-style theater, but I didn’t have enough time to research what that means in Toronto, so I chose a theater company that seemed to have a niche aesthetic. Eldritch Theatre presents horror-themed plays using puppets and parlor magic. We dug their version of Kafka’s Metamorphosis, though I suspect that that HOB enjoyed the ice cream shop next to the theater best. (They had his favorite: salted caramel.)

We tried to walk through as many neighborhoods as possible and I’ll have a lot to say in a later post about the architecture and urban planning of Toronto. In the meantime, here’s an example of one of the charming split houses, where each owner decorates their half without any seeming regard to the appearance of the other side.

I adored Toronto’s old school diners.

Public bathroom access was decent: we used some at libraries and field houses, even a few porta johns in the park.

HOB and I have some health issues and we had to travel differently this time. We were able to cover a lot of ground, but made sure to take frequent breaks in Toronto’s many lush parks—perfect for picnicking. A couple of times we went back to our hotel so HOB could take a nap. Maybe that’s how most people travel anyway….(could not possibly have anything to do with our getting older.)

We also managed to visit three museums and two cultural centers. Sorry to disappoint, however, we did not patronize any of Toronto’s 1,457 cannabis shops.

And we stayed the hell away from the poutine,

How we got to Toronto: flight from Chicago

Where we slept: Town Inn Suites: Price: €180 for a double. Recommended: yes


  1. I’m intrigued and given your sharp eye and from Chicago, then you would know how to assess Toronto in ways that other folks from smaller towns /rural areas would see things quite differently. Yes, it’s too bad you did miss some live local theatre groups. I look forward to future posts of your impressions.

    Against the Grain Theatre, has been doing some outreach innovations. Fabulous Messiah which included several First Nations and an Inuit singer…singing operatically. It put Canada on the map, internationally in classic choral music for innovation. performances filmed across CAnada and stitched together during covid. So it’s historic at different levels. It showcases CAnada, geographic differences, diversity in celebration. Maybe connect up with folks after your trip.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oooh, thanks for the information about the Against the Grain Theatre, Jean. I watched several of the videos on that link you included, and they are splendid!

      I lived in a rural area until I was 18—I moved to Chicago when I graduated from college.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Yes, I was surprised in some areas of Toronto, there is a clutch of Tibetan based food places. That definitely is a recent development in terms of immigration in past 20 yrs.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The one we went to was Loga’s Corner. I loved the neighborhood of Parkdale, which seemed to have other Tibetan places too.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes, that surprised me when I saw this while biking in the area almost a decade ago or so.


  3. I ate momos lst time here in Calgary at a staff potluck. One of the geospatial, drafting staff (who is formally trained) was from Nepal.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ah, so lucky to have homemade momos! Did they come with a sauce? The ones we ate had a spectacular chili sauce.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. No, it was simpler….soy sauce. I found the momo pastry skins a bit thicker in general…which means less leakage.


  4. Mmmmomos! I should remember to take out the bunch I froze some months back. But what is it about the poutine that you don’t like? The cheesiness or the gravy? Or the combination?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I wouldn’t be able to keep momos around for long. My favorite were the veggie ones, which were stuffed, I think, with mustard greens, tofu and ginger.

      I like all the individual element of poutine and I am generally not opposed to unusual combinations of food. The combination in poutine takes away the most appealing texture of fries, which should be crispy, not soggy with gravy. And there lots of combinations with things like pierogi or samosas, which again detract from the finest elements of these foods. Think of a nice, crisp samosa paired with a tart chutney—perfection. Would you pair that with rubbery curds, and soggy fries and brown gravy? Nooooooooooooo!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. A lot of street food carts do excellent sogginess though

        Liked by 1 person

  5. I would tend to agree, the best poutine is still hot and fries should be crispy.

    Poutine comes from Quebec…at least that’s how I’ve always understood it’s origins.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Well, thanks to you i shall finally see Toronto. I have transfered though the airport so many times and despite my best efforts to have enough time to leave, return for the next flight and visit the city inbetween the schedules have foiled me.
    Poutin does not appeal.


    1. It is really quite a well run, relaxing city. I loved the old brick buildings, which I will post picture of soon so you can continue your tour.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Sweet Jesus, schawarma poutine… do they serve it with a tumbler of unleaded 98 octane petrol as a digestive?

    By the way, about that home: isn’t it a Lenin head hanging in the front yard?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You chase it with a side of Lipitor.

      Lenin in his little-known clown make up phase.

      Liked by 1 person

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