Don’t ask how I could smell more like stinky tofu in Toronto than I ever did living in Hong Kong for a couple of months. Well, ok, I’ll answer it: when there are more than five stalls selling stinky tofu within a 500m radius, your clothes and hair will start smelling like it. Iech! or should I say I have not yet acquired the taste of stinky tofu? Let me explain how I got into this situation.
First, one of my favourite parts of summer in Toronto is all the public events and festivals. I love people watching. Since I went back to my parents’ house for the weekend I had to fit two weekend festivals on Friday night.
I started off with the Harbourfront Hot and Spicy Festival.
Construction on my walk over.
I hadn’t been to the Harbourfront in so long. It was a perfect scene with the sun, sky and all the people. After visiting the waterfronts in Tsim Sha Tsui in Kowloon and Stanley in Hong Kong Island I think, aesthetically, Toronto’s waterfront is just as beautiful. Well, it’s hard not to be beautiful when the sun is setting.
I intended to go to a taco throwdown, but unfortunately I got there too late to get the sampling platter. I lined up elsewhere only to find out that they too ran out of meat. I asked for a “chicken taco” because I was really hungry. I feel bad since that’s not what the vendor intended it to be. It was still delicious though.
Then off I went to the third annual T&T Waterfront Night Market in the Portland. T&T is a very successful line of Chinese grocery stores in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA). While I’ve heard of the night markets in Markham, it seems that this is fairly new downtown. The night markets were inspired by the Taiwanese night markets.
I love standing south of the CN Tower and seeing the Toronto skyline.
What a fun night, even if there was way too much stinky tofu. I kid, I kid.
Kalbi short ribs – mmm, freshly grilled and fatty.
Oyster omelette, Singapore-style. They served it with the some sweet and spicy sauce which cut through the heaviness of the omelette. There were a lot of oysters too.
I waited the longest for takoyaki, which, according to Toronto Life, is on the list of foods that you have to try before you die. It is rare to find outside of Osaka, but they serve it in the Scarborough T&T. Takoyaki are seafood balls with octopus and tempura flakes. It was served with sauce, a green powder and white flakes. You put the mayonnaise on yourself. It was awesome just watching the people make the takoyaki. They poured a batter into the molds and seemed to roll the batter into the ball shape within the mold while the batter cooked.
Mango shaved ice.
It seems that with these food events, strategy is key. It can get frustrating waiting in a line. Sometimes you just have to forego the buzzy items. The line-ups Friday night were alright. Some were a bit long, but I managed to to find some that weren’t too bad as well.