Find Balance at Reach Yoga

Find Balance at Reach Yoga

We all want balance in our lives, but sometimes it can be really hard to establish it. There is no one ‘right way’ to achieve it — it’s an ongoing practice and commitment. Incorporating yoga into your life is a good place to start. We caught up with Cathy Mines, owner and founder of Reach Yoga (40 Underhill Dr, Don Mills) to talk about her studio and philosophy.

Photo courtesy of Reach Yoga

Cathy has been a certified Yoga Instructor since 2003 and created Reach with a “dream of creating a place where we could share yoga with our local community. As part of the deeper understanding of a life in balance, I have learned that collaboration, partnerships and community are the things I need most to keep me accountable to the message of yoga.” Helping to create and contribute to a community is a goal that came up several times in our conversation with Cathy — it’s also a key goal for Greenrock Communities. Reach Yoga has been a part of the Don Mills and Lawrence neighbourhood for the past 14 years. The studio is home to a “community of like hearted people looking to breathe, move and laugh their way out of life’s stresses.”

Photo courtesy of Reach Yoga

So what is yoga? The traditional definition of the word means to yoke, or to bind. The binding, or unifying of body, mind and spirit. Or as Cathy says, “In this busy life it may be more fitting to say re-establishing the connection of body mind and spirit as many of us find ourselves moving at such a fast pace that our connections are not as strong as they once were.” That sounds like balance, doesn’t it? Speaking of balance, you don’t need to be able to stand on one foot, or contort yourself into a specific posture to practice yoga — you just need to breathe deep and be present in the here and now.

 

At Reach Yoga we welcome you to come in whatever state of mind or body you find yourself in on any given day. This is not cookie cutter yoga, each one of us will have our own level of energy, our own capability and our own particular drive during each class. Our energy levels are different each day and I encourage people to go with how they feel and simply enjoy that they showed up!

 

At Reach, they teach Hatha Yoga. The classes focus not only on the postures of yoga, but also on breathing exercises and meditation. Instructors and students engage in a rich discussion of how this combination helps to restore balance within our body, mind and spirit.

 

Cathy established Reach Yoga in the Don Mills neighbourhood because it’s the place that she grew up in, it’s home. She says:

 

I’m not sure if it is the energy of all of the green space, being along the beautiful stretch of the Don Valley in the fall always blows my mind, and the sunsets here in Don Mills are amazing… it is the people that make it such a great place to live and work. Because of the people, we expand our community from just our scheduled yoga classes to have specialty classes, celebrations, and even musical guests and class trips. It is the people that make all of this possible.

Reach Yoga is an amazing business in the Don Mills and Lawrence neighbourhood and  just minutes away from Greenrock’s Wingreen Court Community. Let them help you find some balance in this fast paced life. Reach out and connect with your community.

The Best Healthy Restaurants in Toronto

The best healthy restaurants in Toronto

Many of us are trying to eat healthier these days. Changing our diet can help us feel better, look better, have more energy, and can even be better for the planet. It’s not always easy to make healthy choices, especially when dining out. When we are at home, in our own kitchen, we can control what goes into every meal, but who wants to eat at home for every meal? If you’re looking for guilt-free, gourmet meals out on the town, the Greenrock blog team has you covered with the best healthy restaurants in Toronto. We connected with the owners of three amazing healthy restaurants to get their recommendations on what to order. Let’s dig in!

 

Hibiscus

 

Hibiscus Cafe (238 Augusta Avenue) feels right at home in the heart of Toronto’s hip Kensington Market neighbourhood. It was created with the idea of providing a unique menu of gluten-free, vegetarian entrees. Andrey Malkov and his family bought Hibiscus four years ago. They “loved the menu and started to use organic, and, when in season, local ingredients”, expanding and strengthening the cafe’s original mission to provide great tasting, nutritious food.

 

The soup and salad combo is a quick and delicious, nutrient dense meal to try. If you’re coming for brunch, Andrey recommends the vegan mozzarella, mushroom, tomato and basil crepe ($15). Be sure to save room for their coconut sea buckthorn ice cream for dessert.

 

Andrey and his family are committed to creating healthy and nutritious food “made of sustainably grown ingredients, with attention and love”.

Photo courtesy of Hibiscus Cafe

Live Organic Food Bar

 

Live Organic Food Bar was created by Jennifer Italiano and her brother Christopher in 2000. It began as an organic juice bar. The siblings “were highly into organic food and supporting local farmers and believed in wholefoods. Nothing from a package or with a label that we could not pronounce”, says Italiano. Jennifer started getting into raw foods around the same time and says “we took our café from only serving cooked vegan foods to specializing in raw foods too. We were the first in the city to offer such cuisine.” Considering how popular raw food is in Toronto today, they sort of started a movement.

 

If you are new to Live and the raw food experience, Jennifer highly recommends the Raw Combo ($22). It’s been on the menu since day one and it gives you a taste of Live’s manicotti, tostadas, teriyaki noodle stir fry, and pierogis.

 

Live serves a delicious array of raw and cooked menu items, and even sells their own line of products. They have been committed to working with sustainable organic farmers since 2002. The entire menu is organic, vegan, gluten and wheat free with no refined sugars or GMO’s and is locally sourced whenever possible. There are two Live Organic Food Bars to choose from — the original Annex location at 264 Dupont and 134 Atlantic Avenue in Liberty Village.

Photo courtesy of Live Organic Food Bar

Planta

 

Planta was created by the Chase Hospitality Group. The group partnered with Chef David Lee to fill a void. In the words of Steven Salms, president of CHG, the “inspiration was to provide a full service, experience based restaurant that gave diners an option to dine out that didn’t include the use of animal products”. They are committed to using high quality ingredients from ethical suppliers so that they can be proud of the food they serve.

 

You can taste the pride and commitment to quality in every dish at Planta. From spectacular salads and impressive pizzas (gluten-free crust available), to Mr. Salms personal favourite menu item, The Planta Burger ($18.75). The burger is loaded with queso, mushroom bacon, pickles, tomatillo mayo and served with spiced fries.

 

Planta is located in the vibrant Bay and Bloor area of Yorkville, at 1221 Bay Street and fits in perfectly in the neighbourhood. They passionately provide an upscale, plant based dining experience that celebrates innovative cuisine in a beautiful environment.

Photo courtesy of Planta

Living and eating healthy is it’s own reward. We hope that these delicious healthy restaurant suggestions help make sticking to your goals a little easier this year.

 

For information on Greenrock Property Management and Greenrock Rental Communities in Toronto, please see our website.

 

The best Toronto Beaches restaurants for Valentine’s Day

Love is in the air and Valentine’s Day is just around the corner! Are you ready? You don’t need to reinvent the wheel to pull off the perfect Valentine’s Day — the classics are classics for a reason. You can’t go wrong with fresh flowers, a box of chocolates and a romantic dinner — the big three. The first two are easy to pick up on the way home from the office, but choosing the right restaurant can be tricky. To make this Valentine’s Day easy for you, we’ve found the best Toronto Beaches restaurants for Valentine’s Day. They threw in some sage advice on what to order and why you should pay them a visit.

 

Velouté

 

Nestled in the heart of The Beach neighbourhood in Toronto at 2343 Queen Street East, Velouté Bistro & Catering is contemporary and chic, and offers the perfect ambience for a romantic dining experience. We love that it’s only a 20-minute romantic stroll from Benlamond — with the option to pass through scenic Glen Stewart Park. Velouté’s Executive Chef, Fawzi Kotb, mastered his craft at the Marriott Hotel Champ-Elysee in Paris, France. He’s created a special Valentine’s Day Menu for guests to enjoy and share. Chef Kotb recommends the “Dry-Aged 50 Days Bison Cowboy because it’s a dish designed for sharing.” You won’t believe the depth of flavour possible in this dish until you try their 50-day dry-aged, grass-feed 2 ½  LB bone-in bison steak, prepared perfectly in a cast-iron pan, served with a Grand veneur demi-glace, sweet potatoes gaufrette, and assorted vegetables.

 

Owner and sommelier, Alise Matos, brings 25 years of experience, professionalism and passion to Velouté. The restaurant’s location in The Beach is personally significant to Matos. She once lived in the same building, and married there as well. She has “always adored the small town feeling exuded by the neighbourhood”. The intimate, community vibe of The Beaches is matched by the warm and inviting ambiance of Velouté.

Photo courtesy of Velouté Bistro

Whitlock’s

Located inside a unique historic building that’s been around since 1891 (the last wooden structure still in business in The Beaches neighbourhood), Whitlock’s restaurant is a gem. The building has been home to a grocery store and a post office, and in 1925 it was the first Black Diamond Cheese Factory. Whitlock’s offers a cozy and comfortable environment that’s ideal for anniversaries, birthday parties, a romantic night on the town, business meetings, and more.

General Manager, Jey Satchi tells us that Whitlock’s has “come up with a special Valentine’s Day menu based on some of their most popular and mouthwatering dishes.” The menu is not available for advanced viewing, but rest assured that you will find something delicious to enjoy with your special someone. Begin with a soup or salad, then select your choice of 5 popular main courses, including the swordfish which Mr. Satchi highly recommends.

Whitlock’s is located at 1961 Queen Street East, just a few minutes from Benlamond.

photo courtesy of Whitlock’s Restaurant

The Beech Tree

 

The Beech Tree  (924 Kingston Road) gracefully combines old-world bistro charm with modernist cuisine. The menu is made from scratch, just like the restaurant. No outside investors, industry insiders, architects or contractors had a hand in building The Beech Tree. The Beech Tree is all about DIY. They cure their own bacon, pickle their own onions and bake their own burger buns. The restaurant is quintessentially romantic but completely unpretentious. “Indeed, there is nothing in the Beech Tree to distract you from what’s important, namely, the person with whom you are dining.” says co-owner Helder Cabral.

 

On Valentine’s Day, The Beech Tree will feature a three course, prix-fixe menu designed by chef Jamie Newman. If their famousflourless chocolate cake doesn’t make its way onto the special menu, it’s worth a return trip to the restaurant. In Helder’s words:

 

The flourless chocolate cake is so rich and luxurious that I strongly recommend that no one dare eat it alone. Sometimes called the ‘Chocolate Nemesis’, it is made with only a few quality ingredients, including the finest Ecuadorian chocolate and cultured butter. Garnished with a tangy cloud of house-made creme fraiche, and sprinkled with flaky Maldon salt, it is truly a dessert for lovers.

 

The roots of The Beech Tree are firmly planted in The Beaches neighbourhood. As Mr. Cabral puts it, “ we chose the restaurant’s location because it is also our home; a true dinner party among friends.” You’ll be glad you were invited.

Photo courtesy of the beech tree

All your Valentine really wants is to feel loved and appreciated. Show them you care with a romantic evening at one of these romantic Toronto Beaches restaurants this Valentine’s Day.

 

For more information on Greenrock Property Management and our Rental Communities across Toronto, including Benlamond(5 Benlamond Avenue) in the Upper Beach – please visit our website.