Do brunch right at Church Bistro 555

 

Brunch is a way of life in Toronto. For many people, that perfect local spot for brunch is a big part of what makes their neighbourhood feel like their neighbourhood. There is no shortage of great restaurant options doing great brunches in or around The Village. If you are looking for something special, unique and out of the ordinary, your options get a little more limited. This is where Church Bistro 555 (555 Church Street) comes in. Since opening their doors in 2012, Church Bistro has earned a loyal following of locals and visitors seeking their unique organic, Halal gourmet fusion of East meets West. We caught up with Marcus, Owner and Manager of Church Bistro to get the inside story!

 

Courtesy @ChurchBistro555

 

Marcus, what would you say is your most popular brunch item?

 

We have a few things! The Sweet Patootie is basically a sweet brunch, either you have Malpua (Indian egg pancake with creamy sauce $16) or Spicy French Toast ($16) you can also get Milk Bread French Toast – ($14 and Fruit or Cheese Stuffed French Toast for $18). We have pancakes or waffles with saffron chicken ($20). We make great Benedicts, including one of our signature dishes, The Tandoori Chicken Benedict ($18), then we have a Royal Bengal Benny(ground beef Benedict ($18). We even have a Venison Benny ($22)! We a have a lot of vegetarian options and it’s all organic and Halal.

 

Courtesy @ChurchBistro555

 

We couldn’t help notice all those Bennys! What’s the most popular of those? Is it the Tandoori one you mentioned?

 

Pretty much all them! But the Tandoori Chicken is one of the signatures, that and the Royal Bengal. That is a signature dish too.

 

Courtesy @ChurchBistro555

 

Do you have a personal favourite?

 

My favourite is the Venison Benedict. I love it. I love deer meat. The Tandoori Chicken is very good too, you can spice it up, also!

 

Spice it up with curries? A chili sauce?

 

We actually don’t use any curries. We let you add organic green chilis brought from India.

 

Courtesy @ChurchBistro555

 

We love the East meets West approach to your menu. What inspired the Indian component of your menu?

 

Basically we try to create unique food that is Halal and organic, with Western and South Asian flare. [We draw from] French, Italian, Canadian, Jamaican – mixed cuisine, basically. Also, for dinner we have Lamb Shanks, Butter Chicken and we have the best fish and chips you can have in town!

 

Is there something unique about your Fish and Chips?

 

Yes, we can make them gluten-free, we can make them spicy. It’s totally unique.

 

Totally unique. That’s a good way to sum up Church Bistro 555. It’s a good way to describe the whole neighbourhood. That’s why Church Bistro is such a perfect fit for The Village. Fit them into your brunch or dinner plans and you’ll see what we mean.

 

Greenrock Property Management Limited wants to help you connect with your community and the people and places that make it unique. For information on Greenrock Communities including Village Green (50 Alexander Street, 40 Alexander Street and 55 Maitland Street), please visit our website. 

 

Shop St. Lawrence Market this fall

 

The St. Lawrence Market is quite simply one of the World’s Greatest (and oldest) markets. It was named The World’s Best Food Market by National Geographic in 2012.

 

The Market is comprised of a three building complex. Each building serves a different purpose. The North Market is known for it’s Saturday Farmers’ Market, and for good reason — it’s been on since 1803! On Sundays, the North Market and surrounding plaza is home to over 80 antique dealers peddling their wares. The South Market accommodates over 120 specialty vendors who have made the Market their life’s work. Finally, St. Lawrence Hall, built in 1850, houses retail business on the ground floor, city offices on the second and the third floor can be rented out for special events. We talked to Amanda Diep, Program Development Officer for the St. Lawrence Market Complex, to see how they keep things fresh after so many years!

 

Courtesy St. Lawrence Market Complex

 

Amanda, what produce and products are in season this Fall at the Market?

 

Fall harvest in Ontario allows for delicious produce such as flavourful Brussels sprouts, beets and a wide variety of squashes, perfect for homemade soups (one of Fall’s best comfort foods).

 

When does the outdoor market close its doors for the season?

 

Farmers with outdoor stalls generally come inside at the end of October. However, one of the great things about our Farmers Market is that the indoor farmers are open all year round so that our customers always have access to in-season, fresh and locally grown products.

 

Courtesy St. Lawrence Market Complex

 

Are there any fall events at the Market that our readers will want to know about?

 

Readers will be excited to know that “Evening at the Market” is happening again next month onThursday, November 9th. The entire South Market will come alive after hours with cooking demonstrations, live entertainment and chef-inspired dishes from each of our 64 vendors. Proceeds will go to our charity partner Second Harvest. Tickets can be purchased online at www.stlawrencemarket.com.

 

Which vendors in the South Market are the most popular?

 

I think what makes the Market so special is that each vendor is popular for its own special set of products, and locals know it. From Cotton Candy grapes to crocodile steaks and raw vegan to peameal bacon, our customers know that they can always find what they’re looking for at the Market.

 

Courtesy St. Lawrence Market Complex

 

When’s the best time to visit the Market (in your opinion)?

 

Not a lot of people know that we open at 5 a.m. every Saturday morning. That’s when a lot of dedicated customers come to purchase products that sell out quick, such as fiddleheads during springtime. At 5 a.m., the Market is still calm, almost magical, and you can notice a lot of details that you might miss during a busy Saturday afternoon such as the original archways at the Front St. entrance when the space once served as Toronto’s City Hall.

 

That’s so early we might have to take your word for it! St. Lawrence Market has been around for a very long time. Is there anything different about the Market in recent years? What keeps the Market fresh?

 

Our Market Kitchen, which has remained somewhat of a hidden gem over the years, is gaining a large following with the rising popularity of home cooking and baking. The Market Kitchen has a wide variety of classes from Knife Skills to Taste of Tuscany. More details about these courses can be found at http://www.stlawrencemarket.com/events.

Courtesy St Lawrence Market Complex/ Toronto Archives

 

There really is nothing else quite like the St. Lawrence Market. It has stood the test of time and remains a major Toronto landmark and community hub to this day. It connects us to our food and those who provide it, to our community and to our past. It’s life as it was centuries ago, evolved and adapted to suit our needs and wants today. It is an icon of our city.

 

Greenrock Property Management Limited is proud to help connect you with all that your community and city have to offer. For information on Greenrock Communities in Toronto, including Village Green (50 Alexander Street, 40 Alexander Street, 55 Maitland Street), please visit our website.

 

The best pubs near Church and Wellesley

 

It’s summer in Toronto and that means it’s a great time to grab a pint at your favourite local pub. Whether you are looking to make the most of patio season, play some pool, or just hang out with friends and enjoy some good food, Greenrock wants to help make things easier. Here are some of the best pubs near Church and Wellesley (in no particular order).

 

Photo credit: The Artful Dodger Pub

Photo credit: The Artful Dodger Pub

 

Artful Dodger Pub

 

If you’re looking for a comfy tavern with a small town feel in the heart of the big city, you have to visit the Artful Dodger Pub (10 Isabella Street). They have a great selection of beer and pub fare. Enjoy your pint with some fried pickles ($5.50), potato skins ($6.00) or a Scotch Egg – a deep fried, hard-boiled egg wrapped in hot Italian sausage($6.50). The Artful Dodger is like two pubs in one. You can raise a glass to summer on the quiet back patio, or people watch on the busy front patio. When winter comes, cozy up inside by either of their 2 fireplaces. The downstairs bar is quiet and relaxing, while the bar upstairs in a little more lively. There are also 2 jukeboxes, 2 pool tables and 2 dartboards. It’s almost too much fun!

Photo credit: TorontoPubs

Photo credit: TorontoPubs

 

Duke Of Gloucester

 

Sometimes nothing but a delightful dive-bar will do. The Duke Of Gloucester (649A Yonge Street, between Church and Isabella) has a solid beer selection at reasonable prices — which can be as refreshing as the suds themselves when you’re surrounded by more expensive options. Maybe it’s not the spot to bring your mom for a Sunday brunch, but you can catch a soccer game on TV — from MLS to Premiership. Kick back on the hidden-gem that is The Duke of Gloucester’s rooftop patio. There’s a pool table and dart boards to make it even more fun, plus Pubstumpers trivia on Thursdays, and karaoke nights too!

Photo Credit: The Churchmouse

Photo Credit: The Churchmouse

 

The Churchmouse: A Firkin Pub

 

The Churchmouse: A Firkin Pub (475 Church St) is a part of the Firkin chain, but this 2 storey pub feels like a local spot. They’re known for their friendly staff and great service. They have a good selection of local and international beers including their own Butler’s Pale Ale and they always impress in the pub fare department. Try one of their daily specials or go for one of their classic meals like the Chicken Curry (Small $11 / Large $17), Steak and Chips ($22) or their Cheesy Spinach and Mushroom Baked Penne ($16). There’s also a great people-watching patio.

 

We hope you make the most of patio season at one of these amazing pubs near Church and Wellesley. Cheers!

 

Greenrock Property Management is proud to help you connect with your community. For information on Greenrock Rental Communities, including the quiet oasis in the heart of the city at Village Green (50 Alexander Street, 40 Alexander Street and 55 Maitland Street), please visit our website.

Save big at Hone Fitness!

 

Fitness is a booming business. There seems to be no limit to what you can spend on workout wear, supplements and expensive gym memberships. Getting fit and staying in shape doesn’t have to cost a fortune. If you prefer to keep it simple and affordable, you have to check out Hone Fitness (7 Isabella Street) near our Village Green rental community. The gym chain is a pioneer in the low-cost gym movement that is now gaining momentum in Toronto. We spoke with Jim, the manager of Hone Fitness, to find out how they do it.

 

Our gym offers memberships for just $10 and $20 per month. We’re able to offer memberships for such a low price point because we keep it simple — our gym has no towels and no classes.

 

Photo credit: Hone Fitness

Photo credit: Hone Fitness

 

Hone Fitness already has a few gym locations located across Toronto, with plans to open even more locations as soon as possible.

 

Hone Fitness already has a few gym locations located across Toronto, with plans to open even more locations as soon as possible.

 

Photo credit: Hone Fitness

Photo credit: Hone Fitness

 

Housed in the former home of The Yonge Street Fitness Club, the Isabella location of Hone Fitness is impressive. When you step inside, the first level features a welcoming reception area, massage chairs, tanning beds and a juice bar. On the second level you’ll find clean change rooms with lots of lockers and the gym’s cardio equipment. There are about 170 machines, all in good condition. The space itself is open and welcoming. There’s lots of natural light from the large windows overlooking Yonge Street, and charming exposed brick walls.

 

All of our equipment is brand new, and our space is gorgeous and remodeled. It’s a $100/month style gym that you can get for just $10 a month. Its not a low end gym, its beautiful.

 

Photo credit: Hone Fitness

Photo credit: Hone Fitness

 

The third floor is filled with strength training equipment. There are weight machines, benches, squat racks and plenty of free weights to use. The gym attracts trained athletes and younger people who know what they’re doing, as well as those who are still learning.

 

We get a very diverse crowd here, but the area is young, our gym reflects the neighbourhood. We offer personal training for an additional cost, but you get a one hour free chat with a trainer when you join.

 

Photo credit: Hone Fitness

Photo credit: Hone Fitness

 

That free training session is included in the basic $10/month membership plan (plus an enrollment fee and a yearly maintenance fee). The basic membership gives you access to strength and cardio equipment, and the locker rooms. The $20 premium membership gets you all that plus use of all locations, access to the Functional Training Room, tanning beds and massage chairs. There are also more flexible plans to accommodate those with commitment issues.

 

If you’re looking for short term membership options we are very flexible. You can buy a 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 or 6 month package, or a one year membership. We offer very reasonable prices for the shorter stays to accommodate students and travelers.

 

So if you want to get fit without breaking the bank in downtown Toronto, Hone Fitness is worth every penny.

 

Greenrock Property Management wants to help connect you with your community. For information on Greenrock Rental Communities, including Village Green (located at 50 Alexander Street, 40 Alexander Street and 55 Maitland Street),  please visit our website.

 

 

Cafe California: A Neighbourhood Gem

 

A fixture in the heart of the Church and Wellesley neighbourhood, Cafe California (538 Church Street) has been serving the community with a variety of Mediterranean-inspired dishes for over 20 years. Only an exceptional and special kind of place could last this long in an industry that seems to constantly crave the next new thing. Is it the food? The martini bar? The friendly staff? Maybe it’s the eclectic Mediterranean decor, or the sunny solarium that keeps people coming back for more. It’s hard to tell, but the restaurant is doing something right.

 

Photo courtesy of Cafe California

Photo courtesy of Cafe California

 

We spoke with General Manager, Bob Parsons, to see if he could put his finger on what sets Cafe California apart. We asked him about the vibe of the place.

 

It really depends on which seating we’re doing. We welcome all walks of life, it’s warm and inviting, kind of like a Cheers. We attract everyone from young people to seniors at different times of day.

 

The vibe fluctuates depending on the time of day and is influenced by the presence of the patrons. It’s truly a place for everyone because the customers create the atmosphere. The restaurant manages to stay ahead of new trends while remaining true to its Mediterranean roots. As Bob tells us:

 

Our food is definitely what brings people back year after year. Our menu has a very wide range and our customer service is excellent.

 

So, it is the food! Could it be that simple? Maybe. We asked Bob if there was a certain dish that a first time guest should try. Something that defines what Cafe California is.

 

It really depends on your food preferences, we have something for everyone though. Like for example, if you’re vegan or vegetarian, you’ll love our salads. Our menu changes a lot and there’s really nothing on our menu that I could remove. People love the quality and the quantity of our menu items. People come for our salads in the summer season — the Capri is my favourite. Our California salad is massive — most people share the small size — and it’s a great salad to try because it’s got a bit of everything. Every seating draws a different crowd to the restaurant. We really serve the entire neighbourhood — they love the food and the service they get here.

 

It seems that the secret to Cafe California’s success is both simple and indefinable. The accessibility of the food seems to have a lot to do with it, as does the inviting atmosphere and the vibe of the place. We think it might be the restaurant’s authenticity that brings people back year after year. The feeling of people dedicated to doing what they do best, with as much enthusiasm as possible. Day in, day out. That authenticity has made Cafe California a neighbourhood gem, and a fixture of the Church and Wellesley community for over twenty years. If you haven’t had the pleasure, come in to see and taste it for yourself.


Greenrock Property Management is dedicated to connecting you with your community. For information on Greenrock Communities, including Village Green (50 Alexander Street, 40 Alexander Street and 55 Maitland Street), please visit our website.

 

 

Order like a pro at Kintaro Izakaya

 

One of the greatest things about living in Toronto is diversity. A great way to familiarize yourself with a different culture is through food. Trying new cuisines is always an exciting experience, but it can also be an intimidating one. If your knowledge of Japanese cuisine is limited to sushi, you need to pay a visit to Kintaro Izakaya in the Church and Wellesley neighbourhood.

 

photo courtesy of Kintaro Izakaya

photo courtesy of Kintaro Izakaya

 

“Kintaro Izakaya brings the authentic Japanese tapas experience to the door steps of downtown Toronto” says William Shin, Manager. We asked him to give us a crash course in Izakaya cuisine to help you order like a pro the next time you visit Kintaro Izakaya.

 

So William, what is izakaya cuisine?

 

“I” (to stay) + “sakaya” (sake house) = Izakaya

Our specialties include a wide range of yakitori dishes (charcoal grilled skewers), sushi, ramen and traditional Japanese appetizers that perfectly accompany our extensive drink selection. Stay at our sake house to be immersed in the atmosphere with great conversations, food and drinks!


For newbies, what menu items are most popular at your restaurant and what drinks go well with them?


Photo courtesy of Kintaro Izakaya

Photo courtesy of Kintaro Izakaya

 

Our “must try” dish is Ebi Mayo. A delicious dish of deep fried prawns layered with spicy mayo, house-made tartar sauce, and crispy shallots. It is best paired with: Sapporo/Asahi beers, Kikusui Sake (Junmao Ginjo), Ozeki Karatamba Sake (Honjozo), and Kubota Senju Sake (Honjozo).

 

Sounds delicious! What other menu items do you recommend?


Some of our other delicious menu items are:


photo courtesy of Kintaro Izakaya

photo courtesy of Kintaro Izakaya

Maguro tataki. This is a beautiful serving of seared Pacific Bluefin Tuna with a ponzu drizzle, garnished with scallions, served with a side house salad. It is best paired with: Tamano Hikari Sake (Junmai Daiginjo); Gekkeikan Black & Gold Sake (Blended); and Miyanoyuki Sake (Junmai Ginjo).


Photo courtesy of Kintaro Izakaya

Photo courtesy of Kintaro Izakaya

 

Set A & Set B (Grilled Skewers). This menu item is a combination of 5 different skewer selections. It is perfect for first timers who would like to try a variety of grilled items. Sets include a combination of Chicken, Beef, Pork, Seafood, Bacon and Vegetable. It is best paired with: Sapporo/Asahi Beers; Kubota Senju Sake (Honjozo); and Hakkaisan Tokubetsu Sake (Honjozo)

 

Photo courtesy of Kintaro Izakaya

Photo courtesy of Kintaro Izakaya

 

Premium Sashimi Set. This dish is 15 pieces of assorted sashimi, including selections from our premium menu. It is best paired with: Nanbu Bijin Sake(Junmai Ginjo); Miyanoyuki Sake (Junami Ginjo); and Gekkeikan Black & Gold Sake (Blended).

 

Photo courtesy of Kintaro Izakaya

Photo courtesy of Kintaro Izakaya

 

Yuke. This dish features lightly seasoned raw beef tenderloin garnished with scallions and quail egg, served with a side house salad. It is best paired with: Sapporo/Asahi Beers and Otokoyama Tokubetsu Sake (Junmai).


That’s a lot of great menu options and drink pairings! Thank you, William. How would you describe the atmosphere at Kintaro?


Kintaro Izakaya is a cozy family owned japanese restaurant with an authentic japanese feel. A “sake house” to be immersed in the atmosphere with great conversations, food, music and drinks!


Photo courtesy of Kintaro Izakaya

Photo courtesy of Kintaro Izakaya

 

We hope this interview takes the guesswork out of your Kintaro Izakaya experience! Now that you know what to order and what each specialty item pairs well with, the work is done! Pay a visit to Kintaro Izakaya (459 Church Street) to experience the bold flavours of your culturally rich community.

 

Greenrock Property Management is proud to connect you with your community. For information on Greenrock Rental Communities in Toronto, including Village Green (50 Alexander Street, 40 Alexander Street, 55 Maitland Street) please visit our website.

Village Green’s New Generator

 

The Village Green community is currently under construction and we want to thank our residents for their support and positive feedback while we improve your property. In case you are out of the loop, Greenrock is undertaking several exciting construction projects to improve our Toronto properties. At Village Green we currently have such projects underway, including installing a new power generator.

 

WHAT WE’RE DOING
A new Village Green generator is currently being installed inside a room in our underground parking garage. This location was chosen to ensure that the noise when running is kept to a minimum.. This massive green machine is designed to provide back up power to help ensure the comfort and safety of our residents during a power outage. Aside from the normal emergency lighting and fire pump back up, this generator will also provide power to Village Green’s elevators, domestic water pumps and heating circulation and boilers.

 

 

WHY WE’RE INSTALLING A GENERATOR

We have  installed the generator so we ca provide more comfort, safety and security to Village Green residents during power outages.

 

WHAT CAUSES POWER OUTAGES?

Extreme weather conditions can cause power outages year-round. Here are the different Toronto weather conditions that can lead to power outages:

 

  1. High winds can bring down trees and branches onto power lines.
  2. Lightning can strike equipment or cause trees to fall into power lines.
  3. Winter storms can create freezing rain and heavy snow that cause damage to electrical equipment.
  4. Heat waves can increase demand for electricity from air conditioning, which can overload the system.
  5. Rain and flooding can damage overhead and underground equipment.

As any Torontonian knows, these weather conditions are not uncommon and could easily result in power outages year round. Unpredictable weather is a major reason why Greenrock decided to invest in and install a backup generator at Village Green.

 

Bad weather isn’t the only thing that can lead to a power outage. Here are a few other potential causes:

 

  1. Toronto Hydro equipment failure can trigger an outage, even though Toronto Hydro regularly maintains and updates aging infrastructure.
  2. Vehicle or construction accidents can knock down hydro poles or bring down lines.
  3. Animals, like squirrels, birds and raccoons, can damage power lines and equipment.
  4. Cable dig-ins can cause outages when construction crews accidentally hit a buried line while excavating.
  5. Trees can come into contact with a power line if they are not trimmed properly.
  6. Planned Outages are occasionally scheduled to allow Toronto Hydro crews to safely do repair work, maintenance or upgrades on our equipment.

 

Greenrock is excited that the generator project is almost complete. We are confident that this generator will keep our residents safe, secure and comfortable at Village Green in the event of a power outage.

 

Love the Yonge and Wellesley area in downtown Toronto? Check out our website to learn more about Village Green, a vibrant purpose-built rental community. www.greenrockpm.ca

Don’t miss Bestival this weekend!

While Toronto is known for its incredible selection of music festivals, there’s nothing quite like Bestival. Exotic, imaginative and packed with great performances, this is an experience you won’t want to miss. Learn more about Bestival 2016, happening this weekend near Toronto apartments, in today’s post from Greenrock Property Management.

 

A wonderland

 

A self-acclaimed wonderland of art and music, Bestival runs this weekend, June 11th and 12th at Woodbine Park (1695 Queen Street East), a 15-minute drive from Village Green Apartments (50 Alexander Street, 40 Alexander Street, 55 Maitland Street), or Davisville Village Apartments (77 Davisville Avenue, 45 Balliol Street, 225 Davisville Avenue). Expect music from a variety of genres, colorful costumes and a fantastical lineup of over-the-top activities at this adult-only event.

 

This year’s musicians

 

There has been plenty of buzz about the big names Bestival is welcoming this Summer. This year’s two impressive headliners are the legendary The Cure and the Australian rock kings, Tame Impala. They will be joined by dozens of others, from The Wombats to The Twilight Sad, Jonathan Rosa and Odesza. The gate opens at noon both days of the festival.

 

An event all its own

 

Bestival provides great music in an unforgettable atmosphere. Start your Bestival adventure at the Bollywood-themed arena, complete with dancing, dressed animals, lights, lasers and live DJs. Next, participate in a Sound Healing Workshop and explore the renowned Bestival Inflatable Church. A complete list of all the wacky, wonderful and weird activities and events of Bestival can be found online.

 

The blog team at Greenrock Property Management is sure you will have a memorable experience this weekend at Bestival 2016. For more information about nearby Toronto apartments, simply visit our website today.

Toronto Pride is here!

The Toronto Pride Festival is almost here with another exciting year of entertainment, activities and celebrations in honour of Toronto’s diverse and thriving LGBT community. Today on the blog Greenrock Property Management has a brief rundown of the festival, including can’t-miss events and festival information. Our Village Green Community is located in the heart of the Toronto Pride Festival, within walking distance to most of the festivities.

Continue reading