Saturday, July 10, 2010

President's Choice 1000 Tastes of Toronto

Last year, I didn't realize that LuminaTO was so much more than just the President's Choice 1000 Tastes of Toronto. Still, that's all the LuminaTO I attended this year too. 

The area with the wall of plates is usually where President's Choice people appear and hand out free samples of their new products.

I got my four food tickets for $20 and we were off!

At Jon's request, we went looking for the longest line, and lo and behold, it was the Mis Amigos stand.

Moist chicken in barbecue sauce with rice. I liked the chicken, but I was sad that they didn't have plantains this year. The rice was okay; it didn't taste greasy. I'd say the meal is pretty good value for 1 ticket ($5). They also had the option of beef, but I'm pretty sure the chicken was better.
The line wasn't as long as last year. The ominous clouds might have scared the crowds off that day. The event planners were pretty thoughtful this time around in making tables and chairs available. Otherwise, I would have been struggling to eat the chicken with the knife and fork. 

President's Choice smoked meat free sample

I was pretty impressed with the drink. The sparkling dimension makes it taste less sweet.

I wasn't really a fan of this. I preferred the peach mango drink.

That's the truck that gave out PC free ice cream samples!
I was actually surprised at how short the wait was, considering it was pretty hot and humid and it's free ice cream.

It was okay. It tasted like a flavour for kids. I got more of the chocolate than I did the marshmallow flavour. I think the PC Cream First Chocolate Fudge Crackle Vanilla Ice cream (formerly known as PC vanilla crackle) is way more exciting.

Um... okay. 

I stopped by the Susur stand to try a cheeseburger spring roll.
The spring roll was good... it reminded me of a cheesy beef burrito stuffed inside a spring roll wrapping. Meat was good, orange sauce was unmemorable, lettuce was unnecessary, pickled carrots and white radishes were nice, and I wish the paper cone it was held in was edible. They gave it to me quite warm, and overall I enjoyed it. 


I got the fish and the plantains. The plantains were chewy, but I still liked them. The fish wasn't bad, but I didn't like picking out the bones. The hot sauce was good, and a side of salad was helpful to balance it all out. Again, pretty good value for $5.

By this time, I had basically eaten two whole meals and a bunch of snacks. I still had one ticket left, so I thought I might use it on a drink. I think others were in the same mood because there was a considerable line for the stand dishing out the smoothies. This was at a stand also serving jerk chicken, and had I not been so full, I probably would've gone for a plate of it.
One pineapple mango smoothie for me.

It was so thick that it would stay in the straw. It was surprisingly filling for a drink. I liked that they used separate blenders for different fruits i.e. my drink wasn't tainted with specs of strawberry.

At the end, I felt like this girl.

It was pretty fun to walk around looking at these inflatable displays. Andrew had dubbed it "giant Mushroomland" as we were driving around it on a previous occasion. Their location is a bit distracting, as Andrew had trouble staying in his lane while staring at these things.

That red and white striped mushroom was a bouncy house inside!

This guy would let out smoke out of his nose every so often. I tried to capture that but my camera failed me.

There were portable toilets in one area, and a foot pump sink station. The only problem was that the sink station ran out of water pretty quickly.

Drinks were sold at $2.50 for bottled water and $3 for pop. Quite the rip-off.

Museum station is probably the closest to the park.

I think there were more vendors last year. Also, it seemed like less people this year.

It's always a good idea to scour the stands before choosing your targets.

Total damage: $23 for 4 food tickets and 1 pop.

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