Lets just straighten a few things out!

You know drill, your new to the  country, you start a new job and so starts the questions. Don’t get me wrong I could wax lyrical about our fair country and I’m sure I have in the past, but my enthusiasm is waning because some of the questions are ludicrous covering all manner of topics from politics, booze, weather, leprechauns and of course U2 (Oh yeah uncle Bono, he’s gas, wile tight with the Christmas presents mind you!)

So lets straighten a few things out!sterotype map

1. I am not British – I live in the North of Ireland (or Northern Ireland, depending on your viewpoint) so technically I am BUT I’m going to assume you know little or nothing about our country’s complex history so take my advice and do not argue the facts. Also do not argue with me about the geography/politics of the Country, I lived there, I got this.

bono22. Our small country is notorious for producing a mass of talented folks, who we are fiercely proud of; musicians, writers, poets, actors, actress and of course U2- Never assume, because I’m Irish I must like U2- I don’t! You can however assume that every Irish person ever thinks that Bono is a tool. FACT!

3. “Yer all mad craic” – That’s debatable, No we’re not all singing, all dancing all the time. I’ve meet some miserable sods in my life and guess what some of them were Irish! Yes the majority of Irish are known for their love of the aforementioned “craic”, but allow us an off day once and a while.

4. You must love Guinness?….Nope! guinnessCant stand the stuff, same applies to whiskey and black pudding. Oh and sorry mam, I’m not gone on Potatoes either!

5. We’re all religious/ Catholic maniacs– Again not true, possibly true of the generations before us, but there’s a deadly amount of men and women calling themselves atheists these days. The majority of Irish Catholics grew a bit disheartened in the catholic church due to it’s recent scandals, and it’s unwillingness to embrace modern times. Me, I still love a good mass and turn straight to Saint Anthony when I lose my keys.

6. The weather is bad all the time – True, we are still are all talking about the great summer of 1995, our warmest summer on record. We love a good moan about the weather and are never happy with the too cold/too wet/ too hot situation. The weather probably explains why so many of us emigrate. irish weather

7. Leprechauns are friendly little fellows found all over the country. False- There’s two and they hang out in Temple bar…Little fuckers!

leprechaun

8. The Irish love to fight- Well you can hardly blame us…we’ve been fighting for our nationhood for 800+ years.Fighting-Irish_3068071b It is however, remarkable to note that when we ran out of foreign invaders to fight we had a civil war. I wonder If we’d run out of Irish people to fight with would we have started fights with anything  that was looking at us funny? Probably!

Have you had similar questions? Please comment you know we love a good argument

S xx

Advertisements

This must be the place!

George Street Diner

George Street Diner

So I finally made it to George St Diner. I had been meaning to go here since I saw it in the film “The F word” staring Daniel Radcliffe (which was filmed in Toronto for those of you who didn’t know).

We arrived on a chilly Saturday morning and with most breakfast places in the city (Canadians love Breakfast?!) there was a bit of a wait but not too long. Many people like us, where there because they wanted to see it for themselves after seeing the film.george street dinner

We decided to sit at the counter which after the diner booth style seats was our second choice. We were greeted by a nice guy who was also serving us, and it was like intuition as if he knew we were Irish he asked us did we want tea? Now that’s a first! He let us look over the menu while he got our teas – and it was Barry’s Irish Tea no less, could this place get any better? We were presented with mammoth size mugs of Barry’s tea much to my delight!

I hadn’t realized that this place is known to serve a great Irish breakfast until we got there, however instead of the Irish breakfast we decided on the special Huevos Rancheros. While we waited for our food we enjoyed the laid back atmosphere, they had some easy listening Motown music playing and we checked out the movie memorabilia on the wall, and this rather funky retro plug-in – Holy Mary night-light ( now I think I REALLY need one of these). When our food arrived we were not disappointed it was the best Huevos Rancheros I’ve had, it was amazing. We also ordered a side of soda bread and it was the best soda bread I’ve had outside of Ireland. It is close second to my Grandad’s soda bread; he’s a champion bread maker. They make their own soda bread in house but you can also buy the bread mix and make it at home it’s Farrelly’s Irish brown Soda bread mix – apparently “Easy as sin to make”, we are available to test it out if you need us!

Huevos Rancheros

Huevos Rancheros….I’m hungry just thinking of this.

I am already looking forward to going back to try the Irish breakfast although it will be tough not to order the Huevos again, it really was sooo good.

This place is a real gem, go check it out for yourself. 

 

129 George St, TO

 

B x 

A New Dining Experience: Signs Restaurant.

signs logo better

A restaurant staffed by all deaf Servers and bar staff, What a unique idea?! Signs located at Yonge and Wellesley, the new bar and restaurant — “where noise meets silence” — asks customers to order food and drink using sign language with assistance from a “cheat book” that illustrates how to sign menu items.

I had no idea what to expect upon entering the restaurant, but I know the experience I had surpassed all those expectations.

On entering Signs you are greeted and seated by the hostess, who explains Sign etiquette, the menus, and the handy Sign Cheat book. You are given time then, I presume to study up before your server is introduced. Our Server; Gaitrie was by far the most patient and helpful server, I have ever met. Whilst I feebly tried to order my drinks she interpreted my gestures, all while giggling and encouraging me to continue.

This place is so much fun and at no point do you feel embarrassed by your signing inability. Also no need to worry about order mix ups, and mispronounced/misheard utterances, Your order is confirmed at the table with pictures. Perfect for us with our Irish lilt!

sign signs

Now to the food, The menu has a wide selection of foods from traditional Canadian fare to more international dishes. I had Pri Pri Chicken and my Pal had Potato Crushed Salmon, both delicious. Sometimes with restaurants with a unique concept  I worry that the concept is the main selling point, but the food at Signs is amazing, and the wine list is pretty good too!

I would totally recommend Signs Restaurant as a fun and educational dining experience.

Have you been? Whats you thoughts?Sxx