Of course, majority of these shots will be food-based, but I've also included a festive few.
1. The week started off with an ever-so-comforting Oolong Tea Latte (with decent swirled latte art, if I do say so myself!) DAVIDs TEA's Organic The Skinny has got to be the best variety of oolong ever - citrus-y with just the right depth of flavour.
2. A not-so-sharp photo of my Meatless Panini from Union Juice.
On some particularly windy or chilly days, moping around in the Financial District portion of the PATH is a regular lunchtime activity. I have strolled past Picnic on more than one occasion, but only made a purchase recently.
Their shelves are lined with an impressive selection of pre-packaged food items, likely to ensure that busy office workers can purchase the items they need during brief breaks.
In addition to refrigerated sandwiches, salads, chia puddings, mousse cups, cookies, and bottled drinks, there is also the option of purchasing freshly-made items such as Greek yogurt parfaits and the typical coffee menu (Americano, cappuccino, latte, etc.).
The cashiers were friendly, and the checkout process was quick, but I'll have to re-evaluate whether I mind feeling somewhat nauseous again due to a product's incompatibility with my stomach.
The Peppermint Mocha is back, as are the red cups. For the morning rush, the staff have formed an assembly line to deliver customers' beverages to them in a timely manner. (My humble suggestion: Don't try to train a new barista during this rush. It won't end well - just take a glance at my sad pool of whipped cream...)
It's been on my to-try list for a while, though I haven't had the opportunity to taste their $3.75 tacos as of yet.
I'll overlook the fact that I was given no more than a groan of a "Hello" upon climbing the steps into the shop, especially seeing as I was the only one in the other empty space. Half of tiny shop was lined with spray paint bottles, or at least I assumed they were as they assumed an aerosol-like appearance; another section displayed tokidoki figurines and t-shirts.
The shop owner continued to type away at his laptop, not even bothering to cast a glance in my direction, or utter a simple "Can I help you with anything?".
"I'm sorry?" I turned around.
"Did you ASK before taking a photo?"
"..am I not allowed to?" I had not seen any signs banning the capturing of photos within the shop.
"You are. But you have to ASK first."
I glanced back at the plush keychains, before returning a puzzled frown at him. "Then, can I?"
"Yes. But you should ask first."
It became exceedingly difficult to comprehend this sequence of events, and I resisted to roll my eyes all the way to the back of my head.
"..ok." I said, before turning back to the plushies.
Before I could even focus my handheld electronic device to snap second shot, his voice was hear again.
"That's what you should do before taking photos. You ASK." He turned back to inspecting the tubes of paint, shaking his head to a discernible degree.
This was the last straw. I marched out, stat.
I can disregard a crude "Hello." and the lack of customer appreciation, but to lecture a customer is beyond my tolerance level. Having had the concept of "the customer is always right" being firmly embedded in my head from past customer service industry experience, it is my expectation that I will be treated with the same benevolent attitude I have shown towards others. Clearly this is not the case here. And clearly, I will not be walking by, purchasing, or recommending any of the items this shop owner feels the need to rudely lecture paying customers about. Know your place in this industry and get back to it.
Urban Outfitters has finally opened shop in Square One, occupying the previous shop spaces of the Rocky Mountain Chocolate Company and an overpriced toy shop I used to enjoy window shopping in. The store was equally, and if not even more, pleasing that its downtown counterparts: all products were laid out in a straightforward, organized manner, allowing customers to easily maneuver to their section(s) of interest. The interior was well-kept for the most part, and the layouts exhibited a TOPSHOP-before-clearance-time-like tidiness. They even carried an abundant amount of fall/autumn sale items, which were located towards the back of the store with subtle red stickers placed on the tags.
The prices were, as expected, no different from their Eastern neighbours, but that's a factor determined by corporate authorities. Service, surprisingly enough, was just as poor as well. With the exception of the one sales rep situated at the entrance, the remaining other employees possessed expressionless demeanours and exhibited no signs of wishing to provide aid.
View my past experiences here (1, 2, 3) and the full album HERE !
18. Miffy, is that you?! Behold: a sad attempt at creating a bunny from microfoam.
View the full album HERE !
Ninki is located in a very chaotic section of the Scotia Plaza, connected to the PATH. Along with the typical Japanese bento box options, they also have soft serve dessert options (not included on their menu) available.
The Vanilla Soft Serve was a tad cheaper than the Green Tea flavour, which was priced at $2.99; choosing to have it served in a cone was an additional dollar. Prior to a short walk through the Eaton Centre, I picked up a Vanilla-Green Tea swirl in a cup.
After two weeks of working around equally hectic schedules, I was finally able to meet up with a friend at the end of the week at Han Ba Tang.
The quarter-sized pinch of tuna was great in terms of taste, but the amount received was an outstanding disappointment.
I did the math (if any at all): there were four pieces of the greasy sweet potato chip-tuna creation, and the entire plate was priced at an extremely hefty twelve dollars. This meant that each microscopic morsel was THREE DOLLARS EACH.
"What a grab for my money!" I had thought, "For the price tag, it shouldn't have been outrageous to expect more, right?!". But I could only shake my head in dismay at the unjustified value of my poor menu choice.
I initially requested for the Habanero sauce to be placed on the side, but was informed by the waitress that it was believed the meat had already been marinated in the sauce. She added that she would verify this for me, so I had expected her to ask and let me know before I confirm the order. Needless to say, she did not, and simply placed the order.
The bun arrived still intact, but split in half the moment it was removed from the steamer. This wasn't too much of an issue, but just took away from enjoying the bun as it should have been: in one piece. The meat was a tad tougher than I would have preferred, but the textures and flavours soon became lost in an elevated whirlwind of spice; it was much more than my tastebuds could withstand. Flames had risen inside my mouth, and I was coughing and reaching for water before I knew it. That being said, I couldn't enjoy, nor distinguish for that matter, and of the flavours of the individual components.
"Would you like rice?" we were asked when placing the order. It turns out that an additional charge of $2.00 had been placed for this previously unspecified "extra" item.
Perhaps we chose the wrong items this time around, or perhaps we came on a day where neither the kitchen nor waitstaff was performing optimally. The orders weren't spectacular by any means, and service was seriously lacking. For a quiet Friday night, it would have been appreciated if the waitresses remembered our water, to double-check menu items, or even cracked a single smile. This is very saddening for me to write, as I've had great experiences here as well. Maybe I'll just wait till they get back on their game.