September 8, 2011

proof whisky, TIFF opening day, Vol. 50

Whether you returned to campus life this week, loaded the kids on a school bus, or headed off to work after a long summer retreat, one thing is for certain – the Tuesday after Labour Day prompted a considerable change of routine for most. Things are back to business, traffic is heavier, summer is winding down and avid moviegoers are lined up for their premiere TIFF tickets. Yes! The Toronto International Film Festival opens today. This week, we are dedicating our Thursty Thursday cocktail to the scholars, film buffs and stargazers alike. ‘Like’ us on Facebook and Twitter to get last minute updates on tastings, parties & events.

the stargazer (single) 1 oz proof whisky • ½ oz Chambord* • juice of 1/8 fresh lime • ½ cup ginger ale • fresh Ontario raspberries
Fill a tall glass with ice. Add 1oz proof whisky, ½ oz raspberry liqueur, the juice of 1/8 fresh lime and 4 oz ginger ale. Garnish with fresh Ontario raspberries. (recipe by

The stargazer (pitcher) 1 cup proof whisky • ½ cup Chambord* • 1/8 cup fresh lime • 4 cups ginger ale (32 oz) • fresh Ontario raspberries
Pour all ingredients in a pitcher and stir to mix. Pour into tall glasses filled with ice and garnish with fresh Ontario raspberries. (recipe by


*If you do not want to invest in a bottle of Chambord, you can replace it by using more whisky (Nothing wrong with that! 1/4 oz more in single glass and 1/3 cup more in pitcher) To get the raspberry flavour use this easy simple syrup recipe (1 oz raspberry simple syrup in single and 2/3 cup simple syrup in pitcher size:

Raspberry Simple Syrup 1 cup sugar • 1 ½ cup water • 1 cup fresh raspberries or 2/3 cup frozen (with juice) Combine water and sugar in large saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until sugar has dissolved (about 5 minutes). Add raspberries and turn off heat. Cool to room temperature. Strain out berries and pour into bottle.(keeps for weeks at room temp with tight lid)


Ontario Autumn raspberries are in season. Time to whip up some decadent raspberry desserts and sauces.
If you have invested in a bottle of Chambord and you have leftovers (heaven forbid), try making this easy and delicious dessert recipe. These berries can be served on their own or as a topping for ice cream, crêpes or on sponge cakes. 

Drunken Raspberries 2 1/2-pint containers fresh raspberries • 3/4 cup Chambord
Combine raspberries and liqueur in small bowl. Let soak at room temperature at least 1 hour and up to 3 hours. Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover; chill.

Here’s a simple raspberry sorbet recipe from the Foodland Ontario website:
Fresh raspberry sorbet 1/2 cup Ontario raspberries, puréed and sieved • 1/2 cup Ontario Liquid Honey • 1/4 cup white corn syrup
Combine puréed fruit, honey and corn syrup; chill until very cold. Stir well and pour into ice-cream maker. Freeze according to manufacturer's directions.


Or you can get the raspberry VIP treatment at Dolce Gelato on the Danforth (this is their second location). 

They serve a few tasty red-carpet worthy treats. 

We tried their raspberry sorbet – yum! The original Dolce is located on College and offers a wider variety of treats. The College Street shop even serves a raspberry sorbet cocktail (


If you are looking for a  perfect place to do a little sightseeing over the next two weeks, try hanging out at the Bell Lightbox. The new home for TIFF is a beautiful, welcoming five-story complex at the corner of King and John Streets in the heart of downtown Toronto. Inside, visitors gather in a three-storey public atrium, 5 public cinemas, 2 galleries, 3 learning studios, a centre for students and scholars, the O&B Canteen (Oliver & Bonacini), Luma Restaurant, and a lounge. Designed by world-renowned architectural firm KPMB, this unique facility provides an essential meeting place for film professionals, educators and film lovers from around the globe.

If you would like to walk away with a little piece of TIFF, check out the TIFF gift shop for some fun Festival memorabilia. (


Last thing - remember to pick up your bottle of proof rum at the LCBO. It is now available in almost 100 stores across Ontario!! 
Check their site for your closest location (

Weekend Forecast:
Saturday: Variable cloudiness and a high of 24 degrees
Sunday: Cloudy periods and a high of 22 degrees

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