Location: 1 Bedford at Bloor. Toronto.
A would-be Parisian café occupies the premises of what used to be a Country Style coffee joint, or perhaps its next door neighbor. French lounge singers croon on the piped-in music, the workers chat to each other in French, faded photos and posters of Paris line the walls, and generic fast food tables cluster near the walls of this small crêperie, just north of the University of Toronto. The meny provides a healthy selection of crêpes: sweet, savory, and mixed. I opted for a house special "Big Ben", a crêpe filled with mozzarella and raspberry sauce.
I had some misgivings when I realized that the crêpes were pre-cooked, layered with parchment paper for reheating and filling. For efficiency, all ingredients are pre-measured - more will cost extra, but at least the units probably make for a fair consistency of product. The quantity of mozzarella was just about right, but the quantity of raspberry jam smeared on the inside of my snack was rather lighter than I was expecting. Glops of jam would not work with the dish's textures, but I wouldn't've minded a bit more of the raspberry flavor.
I walked out the door with the finished product in my hand, and warnings to be careful, it was hot. I bit cautiously. To my surprise, I found that the best part of the confection was the crêpe itself, lightly sweet, its texture smooth. The toppings were respectable, nothing exciting, but the crêpe itself was good. I wonder how it would complement some of the other fillings they offer?
At $5.95 and up, the crêpes seemed slightly expensive compared to the the local competition. Still, they're a bargain by London prices, and a satisfying light meal or snack, quick and portable.
The Sandwich Construction Company
Location: 670 Main St. South. Woodbury, Connecticut.
A delicious sandwich is a wonderful thing. Among the daily specials at The Sandwich Construction Company on Friday, I found one: smoked turkey, fresh mozzarella, roasted red peppers, romano lettuce, and basil-infused olive oil on an onion roll.
The shop sells sandwiches made from an astonishing array of ingredients, including at least a dozen kinds of bread, twenty or more fillings, and equally large selections of sauces. (I estimate these numbers shoddily from my memory of the paragraphs of ingredients printed on the menu.) The ingredients are fresh. By 1 o'clock, the shop had already sold out of two of its three soup specials of the day and at least one of its sandwich specials.
To go with the variety of sandwiches was an equally impressive variety of drinks. marzapane and I sampled two flavors of Green Tea soda, Ginger Ale and Root Beer. Root Beer-flavored green tea soda is a taste combination that works better than I expected - which is not to say it works well, so much as that it doesn't work badly.
There are a handful of tables outside in the shade, and a fair many more inside, room to seat the better part of 30 people, I'd guess. All sandwiches are served with potato chips, although substitutions are allowed for a price. There are also salads available. Delivery is available to business addresses only.