Brown Dog Coffee Shoppe complements its aromatic free-trade coffee with a crowded menu of fresh cafe fare. Lunch dates commence as pairs settle into the cafe’s brick-walled, cozy ambience—complete with wooden floors and a grandmother encouraging guests to eat up—and select Brown Dog signature half sandwiches such as the smoky Country turkey ($7) or the stacked simplicity of the ham and swiss ($6). Hot sandwiches, including eggs benedict ($5) and bacon-cheese ($4), arrive at tables escorted by doting pickle-spear chaperones and the customer's choice of salad or soup of the day. Diners contemplate the complex aromas of one of Brown Dog's in-house roasted fair-trade signature coffee blends while sitting on the Paris location's brisk patio area, where the Grand River eases along nearby and compels patio sitters to speak only in haiku. In addition to flaky apple fritters, the amiable Brown Dog staff keep the ovens humming with classic cafe delectables, including scones ($1.75), french toast ($3.50), and a fluffy assortment of muffins ($1.75).
While Greeks and Italians have long been neighbors of a sort, seldom were they in such close proximity as Gus and Guido. The two grew up as playmates, alternating meals often at both families' homes. As their childhoods progressed, each came to love both traditional Greek and Italian cuisine. Ultimately, they started a restaurant—aptly named Gus & Guidos—to combine their love for both fares into a single menu.
The old world traditions that inspired the original duo still hold sway in the eatery's kitchens today. Chefs carve all steaks and meats in-house, coating fresh pork chops in a Greek peppercorn sauce or lightly breading classic veal scallopini. They also make a famously tender portion of Italian-style ribs, slowly basted to perfection over nine hours.
An expertly rolled cylinder of fish roe and avocado. A neatly organized bento box. The tang of just enough teriyaki sauce on a jumbo scallop. These are the pleasures that the chefs at Hamachi Sushi focus on perfecting each day. Diners perch at a bar or lounge at tables while enjoying the fruit of the chefs’ work, wielding chopsticks to pluck sushi and sashimi from their plates or scallions from their teeth. In addition to the wide array of rolls ensconcing salmon and barbecued eel, the menu includes traditional Japanese meals such as teriyaki meats and noodle soups. Cubic lanterns made of white paper light the dining room, whose walls are painted the bright pink of a pig that’s blushing because it forgot to curl its tail.
It can be hard to navigate a menu with pages overflowing with unfamiliar sauces, ingredients, and flavours. But the chefs at Sushi Eight take the risk out of this culinary trial and error with a full Japanese and Chinese all-you-can-eat buffet, which showcases a spread of more than 200 dishes. Filled with everything from tempura-encrusted meats to bowls of steaming ramen, the buffet gives customers a taste of Asia without seasoning their meals with crushed up bricks from the Great Wall. As guests get comfortable using chopsticks to pick up rolls filled with black-peppered tuna, eel, and crab, they can also order entree-sized portions of their favourite dishes from the restaurant’s à la carte and takeout menu.