Last Sunday I am hoping is the beginning of the much awaited elusive spring. Since warm days were so hard to get by these days, I got myself up and about early to enjoy the day. I thought about enjoying it with a walk, weaving in and out of shops and seeing people walk me by enjoying the sun as much as I do. That alone put me in such a good mood all day. The warmth of the sun kissing my cheeks, caressing my hair got me on my feet all day. As I thought of where to spend the time, I thought of Mt. Pleasant.
As I thought of where to spend the time, I thought of Mt. Pleasant neighborhood. A few weeks ago, I saw a tweet reminding me of this charming little place midtown. I used to pass by it three times a week when I was still studying photography at Ryerson University and I haven’t been back to take my time and browse around. Sunday was the perfect day for it.
I started it out with brunch at The Homeway. This place I thought would make the perfect start of my day. I found they have good reviews, open as early as 8am, free street parking if you are there early enough and no queues that would make you feel guilty about relishing each morsel of a hearty breakfast. As I walked in at about 9am, the restaurant was already more than half full. I found myself a good table by the back end and as I was taking my seat, an elderly gentleman to my right engages me in a conversation. How I wish I have this little restaurant close to home. No matter I just met the person, I felt the warmth bestowed on me as if I was a regular. That alone would make me want to come back regularly.
As the day called for everything indulgent, I ordered a big plate of pancakes, bacon, hash, rye and beans. I was repentant when the server placed the plate in front of me, bashfully telling the other patron that I don’t plan on finishing everything on the plate. LOL. I ended up eating a pancake some hash and of course, all of the bacon. That I cannot leave behind for sure.
For a few hours after brunch, I ran some errands further downtown. After all of my chores aptly done, I was left with a few more hours and I decided to go back to Mt. Pleasant. Finding myself strolling just a little bit north of Belsize Drive by Mt Pleasant . Initially I wanted to stroll by a bakery but found it to be closed for Sundays. That disappointment did not linger as I found myself by a charming little home store called Jacaranda Tree & Co. A mix of vintage and contemporary was what met me inside. When I focused my attention on the center table, I hold my breath as it was my favorite daisy pattern on different kinds of dinnerware. I saw that design two years ago and I have collected the set slowly. First the salt & pepper shaker, then a pitcher and a canister and last Sunday was a big salad bowl. There was something about the design that makes me feel cheerful, I could not resist bringing home one. It also helped that it was $10 less of its original price (insert big grin here!).
As I was perusing why I felt no guilt at all for that spontaneous and impulsive buy, I found myself in front of Sandoozle’s Smokehouse & Pub. It was then I realized that it was almost 3pm and I haven’t had lunch yet. I guess it took all that time to burn all the brunch I ate that morning. By that time I was ready for a big sandwich and I opted for the Montreal Smoked Meat Sandoozle. Said to have been prepped/cured/smoked for 288 hours, I gather it must be good. What I got was a heaping of meat between rye with mustard, fries, kosher dill and smokehouse coleslaw. It was one hefty sandwich. Even if the meat was savory and tender, I only managed to eat half of the sandwich as it was surely be stamped a glutton if I attempted to finish the meal.
If I were to be honest, I’d give you full disclosure. The motive for not finishing the sandwich was that I had gelato in mind to finish my day. Before getting to Sandoozle’s, I passed by Il Gelatiere Artigianale. I wanted to recreate that hot summer day in Italy where I regained back my smile with a cup of homemade gelato. Soon as I walked in, I got myself two flavors, Limone and Pistachio and settled myself happily in one of the tables across the display case. I was probably eating so happily I caught the attention of a little girl who was patiently waiting to get her own share. I felt rather guilty that she had to watch me as she furtively checks her dad if he was done paying for her gelato. The minute after that long hard stare, she finally gives me a grin as she was handed her own share .