It's no secret that I love food. So when I am about to go on a trip, chances are tops on my mind will be all the different kinds of yummy eats ahead of me. That's why I had grand plans to eat at all my favourite restaurants this trip, particularly in Ottawa: oysters at Whalesbone on Bank Street in Ottawa; sourdough bread & steak at The Keg; brunch with peameal bacon at The Lieutenant's Pump on Elgin Street; something veggie and healthy at The Wild Oat in the Glebe and a big bowl of pho somewhere on Somerset. In the end - and to my delight - I was invited to a number of barbecues and only ended up eating lunch at The Wild Oat.
I have made it out a couple of times for beers and pub food on patios, in Toronto and Ottawa, and I have to say, pub food is something I miss the most in Abu Dhabi. It's just not the same. One thing the UAE does not know how to do (and please, correct me if you know of a place that proves me wrong) is a proper club sandwich. It's not the non-pork thing I mind. Is the addition of weird things, like egg and cucumber. Last night, complete satisfaction at Smokey Joe's on Yonge Street: an amazing club sandwich and delish sweet potato fries, spicy dip for them washed down with a couple of pints.
And I had to giggle this morning when the friend I am staying with – slim and fit but such a kindred spirit food lover she told me about the sweet potato fries before we got to the restaurant – urged me to take advantage of some of the Nutrition in Motion meals that had stacked up in her refrigerator.
"Oh no!" I said. "You should eat them."
"I don't feel like eating them," she said. "I feel like eating bad food."
Good thing I only have a few days left on my vacation. At this rate I might not fit on my plane seat.
UPDATE (Sept 10): Back in Abu Dhabi... wearing stretchy clothes. Completely forgot to write about the deep fried pickles at the Royal Oak. Mmmmmmm.