FABARNAK restaurant located in the Church and Wellesley Village is a 519 Church Street Community Centre initiative that not only serves delicious food, but is focused on doing social good. They strive to help people with employment barriers through their training and employment program. They offer people who have faced some kind of employment barrier the opportunity to receive training and job experience that will help them gain future employment or help them transition to school. Some of their participants have included trans youth undergoing a gender transition, newcomers to Canada with limited Canadian work experience and young people in recovery from addiction.
Their menu items are creative and unique and over 60% of their ingredients are sourced locally. Though the menu was small, every single item had personality and sounded delicious. We started with some Crispy Ricotta Gnocchi which was a perfect sharing dish.
Next up with some crispy KFQuail. Nice and crunchy on the outside and moist on the inside dipped in some spicy ketchup. Delicious!
We also had the Lambchetta which if you’re on a diet, the amount of fat on this dish may not be your cup of tea. It was tender and full of flavour but not a dish I could complete on my own. I’d definitely recommend ordering one for the table so everyone can try a small piece.
Overall, the experience was wonderful. Great service and amazing food means I will definitely be returning!
As the winter is finally passing and the warmth of summer is within reach, I wanted to share with my Toronto friends a wonderful volunteering opportunity that really changed my life. A few summers ago, when I was in the middle of so many life changes that left me a little bit lost, I knew it was time to make some changes in my life. I needed to stop thinking about just myself and I knew that if I started looking at how my life could help others, that I would eventually find my way again. I remembered my friend Julian had mentioned that the Disabled Sailing Association of Ontario was in need of volunteers so after work I dropped by their little office to see what I could do. This sailing club provides people living with a disability the opportunity to learn about and enjoy sailing.
I volunteered as a sailing companion and was able to learn how to sail, spend my summer surrounded by water, and hang out with some of the best company I’ve ever had. I met more inspirational and positive people that summer than I have in my whole life. They showed me that you can overcome any obstacle with the right mind set. One particularly amazing person that I met was Joseph Chessari who had both of his legs severed above the knee, a year earlier in a work place accident. You would have never known from speaking to him that the accident had been so recent. There was never any traces of anger or bitterness. Just appreciation for the life that he still had, and the determination that he was going to do everything that anyone else could do. And he really does! He now runs, swims, rock climbs, paddle boards and pretty much is just an awesome rock star! Visit his site walkingwithnewlegs.com and learn more about his story and his initiatives to support and encourage other amputees.
It was also at this club that I met a boy who’s genuine desire to help others, and unmeasurable understanding and empathy, still continues to push me to achieve more from my life. He truly is the best person I’ve ever met and I’m so lucky that he lets me be a part of his life. I promise you that while you volunteer here, you’ll meet at least one person that changes your life. You’ll be constantly surrounded by amazing stories, strong people, and open minds. I really couldn’t imagine a better way to have spent my first summer in Toronto and highly encourage you to get involved.
Roast Duck Poutine Pizza. There really are no words I could possibly say that these photos don’t already tell you. It’s glorious, and horrifying. Your stomach’s best friend, and perhaps your arteries’ worst enemy. But oh so worth it.
When it comes to moving, I am the ultimate procrastinator. The job always seems so daunting and I am always in disbelief at just how much junk I can actually fit in one little bedroom. Not to mention I have the arm strength of a 6 month baby and am completely useless when it comes to heavy lifting. The only good thing about moving day was that I got to have another meal in Peterborough.
My wonderful parents met me at 8am to get the party started. By 2pm, we had barely made a dent in the packing so we decided we needed a food break. Both of my parents are vegetarian so we went to this cute little vegetarian shop in downtown Peterborough called The Planet Bakery.
Every time I visit this shop, I can’t help but think of one of my best friends, Sam. The orange floors remind me of the bright orange walls in his old apartment and just everything from the minimalistic design, to the mismatched recycled chairs, to their openness and friendliness of the atmosphere just screams out Sam Robertson. I could easily see him working his chef magic here.
We were so hungry that we ate most of the food before I thought to take a photo to share with you guys. So the only thing I have pictured is their rosemary walnut burger. SOOO good! Moist and flavourful, it sits on a fresh Focaccia bun with basil mayo, melted cheddar, and a sweet and savoury cranberry-onion confit. YUM!
We also had their green apple & old cheddar sandwich, as well as their cranberry and brie sandwich. I personally preferred the crisp freshness of their green apple sandwich over the sweet tartness of the cranberry.
These flavourful dishes will make even the biggest meat lover opt for a vegetarian option every once in awhile.