Thursday, May 29, 2008
Wednesday I woke up and headed straight to Lai Wah Heen. It is quite possibly the best dim sum in Toronto. At the very least it is definitely the most elegant. The elevators have different paintings but I love this one because it looks as if they are deciding what button to press.
The menu is filled with exotic and glamourous-sounding temptations that sometimes border on the mysterious, as with the "rainbow chopped in crystal fold" and the "Billionaire egg white fried rice flavoured with shredded conpoy." The pan-seared foie gras arrived with a sweet sauce, mildly touched with ginger alongside tempura asparagus.
I ordered the shark fin soup - just because. The dumpling was really the star of the dish. The shark's fin were long strands of clear straw. Mmmm, cartilagenous.
The dumplings pictured starting on the left are the Phoenix eye purse (fish maw and sprouts), steamed crabmeat, corn and cured ham dumpling, chicken and scallion, and steamed duckling dumpling with foie gras. The Phoenix eye purse was interesting looking, but did not stand out. It was adorable that the corn dumpling was folded to look like an ear of corn, but the simple chicken and scallion was actually the best of the dim sum.
It is so wrong that the duckling dumpling is made to look like a little duck - but in a good way. The foie gras flavor was so mild as to almost be absent.
The chilled duo of lychee and jasmine tea puddings was clever and definitely tasted like tea. They were probably made with agar agar.
Afterwards, I checked out the Bata Shoe Museum. It not only had the pop culture and fashion shoes I expected, but a number of interesting anthropological exhibits.
Bowie's shoes from the "Serious Moonlight Tour". I wanted to smash the glass and steal them so I could burn them and salt the ground so nothing could ever suck that badly again.
I took a cab over to Kensington market. My cabbie was from trinidad, so we sang calypso songs along the way. He got so caught up in singing, he forgot to put on the meter. He offered me a free ride, but I know they are hard up so I gave him a fair sum and asked for a recommendation for a Trini restaurant.
Kensington Market has a lot of cool hipster and hippie shops.
I especially enjoyed a store called Blue Banana where I bought some gifts for friends back home and some bath bombs to spoil myself.
A fellow Roadfooder had recommended the debrezini sausage at European Meats and Sausages. By the time I got there near closing they were out of debrezini, so I enjoyed a knockwurst, which was scored and resembled a stegasaurus tail in a bun.