STAYING HYDRATED IN THE FALL AND WINTER

As my lips begin to dry, and skin begins to flake, I know there’s no denying it. Winter is coming. With the wind outside turning cold and brisk, and the heating in my condo kicking into high gear, my body needs every drop of water it can absorb. While I unpack my humidifier from storage to keep me misty on the outside, I also try to stay hydrated from within by guzzling plenty of water. However, I’ve recently changed jobs at work and often find myself in back to back meetings, which makes getting my daily fill of water more challenging. I have to remind myself the importance of staying hydrated and prioritize my water bottle as important as my cellphone.

Staying Hydrated in the Fall and Winter

Staying hydrated isn’t only good for chapped lips and dry skin, but helps with weight loss, body temperature regulation, energy levels and headaches. Dehydration can even affect your mood and make you more vulnerable to colds.

Some tips on staying hydrated through the colder months include:

  • Reusable Water Bottles: Since I’m often away from my desk, having a water bottle to tote around the office is key. Indigo has an awesome selection of stylish water bottles, turning the container into a cute accessory. I’ve also been known to re-use 1L Evian bottles, which are sturdy and easy to carry.
  • Fill up at the start of the day: Sometimes, I forget to drink water until I realize I’m parched at the end of the day. To fight this, I try to fill up a 1L water bottle at the start of the day and again at lunch so I always have water on hand, even if I don’t leave my desk for hours at a time.
  • Get your water content from fruit: If you’re The Hubby, who hates drinking plain water, try eating fruit that’s high in water content like watermelon.
  • Infuse water with flavours or try coconut water: An option for those who get bored with just water is to add a squeeze of lemon or lime to their glass. Coconut water’s also a great option that’s also a great source of vitamins and electrolytes. Thirsty Buddha’s new All-Natural Coconut Water with Watermelon adds a touch of sweetness to each sip.
  • Tea: If cold drinks aren’t your thing, switch to tea. I am in love with all the berry flavoured teas from David’s Tea.

However you do it, staying hydrated in the cooler seasons is just as important as the hotter ones. I even have calendar reminders to keep me drinking throughout the day.

Staying Hydrated in the Fall and Winter

Disclaimer: A sample of Thirsty Buddha All-Natural Coconut Water with Watermelon was provided complimentary by Buddha Brands Co. All opinions expressed below are wholly mine and not indicative of the opinions or positions held by Buddha Brands Co.

EAT TO THE BEAT 2016 GIVEAWAY – CLOSED

Hands down, Eat to the Beat is The event of 2016 that I am looking forward to the most. The evening, supporting the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation, features delicious sweet and savoury treats from 60 of Toronto’s top chefs (who happen to also be women). To date, the event has raised over $3.9m to help support people living with breast cancer. This years event will be held at Roy Thompson hall on November 1st.

Eat to the Beat 2016 Giveaway – Closed

I had the honour of attending last year’s event and was blown away by every aspect of the evening, from the food to the incredible positive and fun energy. In addition to food and drinks, a wonderful tradition of the event are fun, food inspired corsets created and modelled by cancer survivors. 

Participating chefs include Renée Bellefeuille (Art Gallery of Ontario); Alexandra Feswick (The Drake Hotel); Lauren Mozer (Elle Cuisine); Bonnie Gordon (Bonnie Gordon College of Confectionary Arts); Jacqueline Lo (Ruelo Patisserie); Emma Beqaj (Emma’s Eatery Catering); Donna Dooher (Mildred’s Temple Kitchen); Nuit Regular (Pai Northern Thai Cuisine); Felicia Derose (Colette Grand Cafe); Alison Ferland (Byblos); and so many more.

Join me for an evening filled with good eats, supporting a great cause! Tickets are $189 and can be purchased online at http://www.eattothebeat.ca/ (a tax receipt will be issued for the maximum allowable amount).

To one of my lucky readers, I am giving away one pair of tickets to the event!

Enter the contest below for a chance to win. Contest closes Thursday October 27th at midnight.
Where: Roy Thompson Hall, 60 Simcoe St, Toronto
When: Tuesday, November 1st – 7pm

Good Luck!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

JAKEMAN’S PURE MAPLE SYRUP

Website: http://www.canadathestore.com
What is it: Canadian Maple Syrup
Twitter: https://twitter.com/canadathestore

Disclaimer: Products reviewed below were provided complimentary. All opinions expressed below are wholly mine and not indicative of the opinions or positions held by canadathestore.com

The Basics:
Maple syrup is a staple in my kitchen, poured over pancakes on the weekend, or used to create a sweet and spicy glaze over salmon at dinner. Jakeman’s Pure Maple Syrup is 100% pure and organic with no artificial flavours or preservatives. CanadaTheStore.com is an online retailer showcasing high quality products made in Canada. The website’s Gourmet section includes tea, cakes, smoked salmon and lots of maple syrup.

My Experience:
After being contacted to try out Jakeman’s Pure Maple Syrup, the bottle was delivered to my door within 48 hours, super fast and even before I received the tracking information. The Hubby and I decided to make a batch of pancakes as our base to taste the maple syrup. Only a small bowl was needed to down 4 pancakes, leaving us with 90% of the bottle for future cooking adventures.

Jakeman’s Pure Maple Syrup

What I liked:

  • Strong natural maple flavour without being overly sweet. The syrup was delicious on pancakes and
  • 100% organic with no added preservatives or artificial flavours.
  • The syrup had a consistency that was easy to pour and didn’t dribble on the bottle.
  • I also liked the decorative maple leaf bottle, which makes Jakeman’s Maple Syrup a great souvenir.
  • Although the bottle was oddly shaped, being thin, it was very easy to handle.
  • Shipped from canadathestore.com, my maple syrup was safely packaged with plenty of bubble wrap and arrived within 48 hours.

What could use work:
Priced at $15.95 for 250ml, it was more expensive than other brands I’ve bought in the past.
Currently, only one colour and grade of maple syrup is available at canadathestore.com, I’d like being able to choose a darker or stronger taste.

TL;DR: Pure maple syrup with a rich natural taste in a cute decorative bottle, easily purchased online and shipped direct to home.

Jakeman’s Pure Maple Syrup

BEST RAMEN

Best Ramen

Back in 2014, I wrote about my favourite ramen shops in Toronto. Since then, I’ve managed to cross a few more restaurants off my bucket list and more new names have popped up in the city. It’s about time to refresh my list. My rating criteria has remained the same and I’ve only included restaurants that serve only ramen, not including Izakayas who have ramen on the menu or any Chinese noodle shops. I’ve also listed the restaurant’s previous ranking next to their new ranking. In general, many of the new entries rank high and Kinton has improved several spots. This was mainly due to how accessible they are and with the new North York location, The Hubby and I are there often. 

Best Ramen

What I look for in a bowl of ramen are three things:

  1. The noodles – are they chewy? has a good texture? not doughy and not over done?
  2. The broth – is it rich? how much fat is there? is it bland? and even for me, is it too salty?
  3. The toppings – what’s included? is there an egg? how’s the meat cooked? garlic paste? bamboo? seaweed? is there a good portion and balance?

Based on these criteria, here’s my ranking of Toronto Ramen shops (as of Aug. 2016)

RankRestaurant
1 (1)Sansotei – 5.0 $ @ 179 Dundas St W
2 (-)Ramen Isshin – 4.5 $ @ 421 College St
3 (5)Kinton Ramen – 4.5 $ @ 5165 Yonge St
4 (-)Ryu’s Noodle Bar – 4.0 $ @ 33 Baldwin St
5 (-)Momofuku Noodle Bar – 4.0 $$ @ 190 University Ave
6 (2)Santouka – 4.5 $ @ 91 Dundas St E
7 (3)Niwatei Ramen – 4.5 $ @ 3160 Steeles Ave E
8 (-)Hakata Shoryuken Ramen – 3.5 5321 Yonge St
9 (5)Ramen Raijin – 3.5 $ @ 3 Gerrard St E
10 (6)Touhenboku Ramen – 3.5 $ @ 261 Queen St W
11 (7)Ryoji Ramen – 3.5 $$ @ 690 College St
12 (8)Kenzo – 3.5 $ @ 4860 Yonge St

Still TBE (To Be Eaten)

  • Jinya Toronto
  • Ramen Kyouka

Did I miss your favourite restaurant? Let me know in the comments. Last Updated: 08/04/2016