This time last year we were in Jamaica at the Excellence Oyster Bay all-inclusive, adults-only resort. We had such an amazing, memorable experience there. I took so many pictures and videos that I’ll be sharing in a separate post. We always talked about going back but of course, due to uncertain times with COVID19, it’s not something that’s possible in the near future. While we’re practicing social distancing, we’ve been trying to have a different routine for the weekend so that it feels like an actual weekend. How many of you are feeling like the days and weeks just blur together? The first couple of weeks were the transition period but now we’re getting into a bit of a routine which is so nice.
The fiancé was planning a surprise date night for a while and this weekend he revealed what he has been planning. He said because we couldn’t be in Jamaica this year, he brought Jamaica to us instead! He is the biggest sweetheart and always so thoughtful. During our trip to Jamaica last year, we found out that April 6th is Jamaica’s Independence Day and there was a huge celebration at the resort with delicious Jamaican food and cultural performances. This was how we celebrated at home!
First, we wanted to set the mood, we put a beach scene on the TV with crashing wave sounds. The weather has been warming up here so we had all the windows opened with a breeze coming through the condo. It felt so nice and it even smelt like the beach with this Sand + Fog Sage & Sea Salt candle lit up. I added some greenery by decorated the place with my silk flower arrangements (check out my passion project account @myblanccuration).
Drinks were served, Red Stripe beer and rum punch (I’ll share the recipe!) on the menu! When we were at Excellence, we had a lot of these drinks. It brought back so many memories. We started the night with some drinks and mini beef patties as appetizers (PC Mini Jamaican Beef Patties).
It’s finally the weekend and I’m excited to share with you my recent experience at La Palma. I remember seeing this on Instagram and didn’t think that it’s located in Toronto but then was very pleasantly surprised that it was! This restaurant has a very Cali vibe with the way the interior has been designed. We didn’t get a chance to make a reservation beforehand so we were seating in the back by the open kitchen but it was still nice. Wish we got a larger table though as the tables for 2 felt a little crammed for sharing dishes. All in all, I had a great experience, the food was very delicious and the service was amazing. The next time you’re looking to try a new restaurant in Toronto, consider La Palma.
Cacio e Pepe ($14): This is kind of like a flatbread cheese pizza with garlic and olive oil. It was SO delicious, definitely my favourite dish of the night.
Ontario Corn & Beluga Lentils ($12): This dish also has arugula pesto, feta, chickpeas and I like all of those ingredients. It had a fresh and light flavour to it with a little kick of feta. Sometimes I find that the feta can be too overpowering in flavour but this dish was delicious!
Wood-fired Cornish Hen – half ($14): The cornish hen was so tender with great flavour.
8 oz. Flatiron with chermoula ($17): It came as ‘medium’ and it was cooked perfectly. The sauce that came with the dish added a very rich flavour. I really enjoyed this!
849 Dundas Street West, Toronto
I will definitely go back again for more of the Cacio e Pepe. Thanks for stopping by – have a great weekend!
I was researching on a new restaurant to try and came across Joe Bird that just opened last month (August)! The vibes and service there were great, but the most important thing, the food was delicious. If you are looking for something relaxing to do in downtown Toronto, I would suggest stopping by the Harbourfront for a nice walk and come here for dinner and dessert (it’s facing the water!).
We had to try one of Joe’s cocktails so we tried the Maple Whiskey Lemonade – we really liked it. It was a nice blend of citrus and sweet.
Maple Whiskey Lemonade (pitcher: $35): Sweet Quebec maple syrup and tart freshly squeezed lime juice, combined with Canadian whiskey and topped with ginger ale
They do brunch and take-out too! At the back entrance of the restaurant, they took an old RV and made that their take-out window. It’s so cute with a very retro vibe. You can also use Ritual to order take-out!
Okay, we went a little ham. I mean, it was our first time there and it’s kind of tapas style so we thought we’d order a little bit of everything to try (hahha!).
Ordered all the birds to try! Must say I like Joe’s Fried Bird the best. We had it with the Bird & Malted Waffles ($10) order and it’s a must try – so delicious. The BBQ Bird and Smokey Grilled Bird was good too.
For sides, we went with the Poutine ($5), Broccoli & Cauliflower ($4.50) and Corn on the Cob ($5). The server suggested that we get the poutine with our Smokey Grilled Bird order as it comes with a side so we went ahead and did that. Don’t judge me, but in the end, we still ordered a side of poutine cause it was so good! The corn was absolutely amazing but I always like corn on the cob like what you would get at Mexican restaurants with cheese and toppings on them. As for the broccoli & cauliflower, it was good but we didn’t eat much of it cause it had a bit too much mayo on it for our liking and we were also super stuffed at that point.
Everything is very reasonably priced. Check out their full menu here. I’ll definitely stop by on a weekend one of these days to try their brunch menu.