Sunday, October 23, 2011

A Melody (Bar) of Food - Free! (Giveaway!)

When was the last time you had a free meal? In this land of touch-and-go world economics, gas prices that make your head spin faster than the numbers on the pump and grocery bills that sometimes make me wonder if food is necessary at all, dining out is becoming a luxury quickly shunted to the back burner. A nice meal in a restaurant can drain your wallet, which for me kind of sucks the joy out of the whole experience, and when you're heading into the city for food it can be even worse.

But... what if I told you that you can have a delicious, eco-friendly, local producer-friendly dinner at one of Toronto's top-rated hotels, without the need to pick up the check? The folks at the Gladstone Hotel are kindly offering one of What Smells So Good's readers dinner for two (a $40 value), at their newly renovated Melody Bar!

The Gladstone, on the previously "divey" Queen West strip in the heart of the city, has come into it's own as a very artsy boutique hotel that has something for everyone. Along with 37 nifty-looking rooms and exhibits from local artists, the hotel boasts a Cafe with a varied menu - including vegan and gluten free options (and apparently one of the best brunches in the city) and of course the 122-year-old Melody Bar. Far from it's roots as a simple hangout and booze supplier, the Melody is open for dinner from 5-10, with a menu slightly smaller than the Cafe's but still just as inclusive and local. In fact, the vegetarian burger (a panko crusted, cheese stuffed portobello mushroom cap with lettuce, tomato & zucchini pickle) is one of their most popular offerings, and gluten-free bread is always available. Omnivores will appreciate the steak frites and the duck confit poutine, and everyone can dig into a luscious pecan-cherry crusted chocolate tart for dessert (which, enriched with buttery avocado, is pure vegan bliss).

So, how do you get in on this chance to win a $40 dinner for two at the Gladstone Hotel?? Here's what you need to do:

Be in Toronto within a month of the entry deadline of November 5, 2011 (when the voucher expires)
Leave a comment on this post telling me what your favourite thing about Toronto is!

For an extra entry:
follow me on Twitter and tweet about this contest (with a cc to me, @jo_jo_ba)


Subscribe to my blog feed via e-mail or your reader and leave a separate comment saying you have done so

You can of course do both, but I'll only be counting one extra entry. Sorry!

I look forward to hearing about your Toronto gems! Good luck to you all!


  1. Hello, Thank you for visiting my blog. You have a lovely blog here. I just thought I would drop by and visit and tell you for the Apple Cake you may use two 8x8 pans or one large pan.
    Thank you for visiting and I hope that you will visit again. Blessings, Catherine

  2. I love all of the awesome independent restaurants that populate Toronto. We hate chair restaurants and in Toronto it is so easy to get out there and discover something new! Thanks for the chance!

  3. I live in TO and I've actually haven't had a chance to eat at Melody Bar yet! But I LOVE the Gladstone! My favourite part of TO is the fact that there are so many multicultural food options. Thanks for the contest!

  4. If you are wondering what a chair restaurant is, it is what happens when your finger dyslexia kicks in...I meant chain restaurants!

  5. What I love most about Toronto is the ethnic diversity of foods available in one place.

  6. I love the different ethnic neighbourhoods. When I lived in Edmonton, it was what I missed most about eating in Toronto.

  7. My favourite thing about Toronto is the fact its vitality lasts even after the work day is gone. In many cities, the downtown core becomes empty because the suburbanites have gone home but not Toronto. We have a vibrant, diverse community of all walks of life but remain a relatively safe environment well into the night. Many other cities do not share our safe co-mingling of people from different economic and cultural backgrounds.

  8. My favourite thing about Toronto would be the diversity, especially when it comes to FOOD and INGREDIENTS!! I have always wanted to travel the world, but it's not feasible on a student budget. However, I can always find groceries here that carry a variety of goods from around the globe, which allows me to recreate the tastes of another country in my kitchen! You can't say that of every city!

  9. Ooh, also, just subscribed to your blog feed!

  10. How rude of me, I must also add thank you for the chances, and for the ongoing recipes!


Thanks for the feedback!