What was I expecting? The nicest people on earth, certainly (aren't Canadians just the best?). Tall buildings and meetings were a given. But I was not expecting to run into one of the most amazing dessert bars I've ever eaten. Plus I added a new word to my vocabulary: Nanaimo. As in, Chocolate Peanut Butter Naniamo Bar. Yes, it tastes as good as it sounds.
|Chocolate Peanut Butter Nanaimo Bar, The Sweet Escape Patisserie|
I ran into a few of these bars throughout the area, though Nanaimo is actually located in British Columbia, on the opposite side of the country. The funny thing is, no one that I talked to seemed to know the origin of the bar or anything beyond the fact that it's called the Nanaimo bar, and Nanaimo is in BC. Your geography lesson for the day, my friends.
|The Historic Distillery District in Toronto|
At The Sweet Escape Patisserie, their take on the CPBNB starts with a chocolate crust interlaced with coconut flakes, followed by a creamy layer of peanut butter, a layer of light buttery whipped cream, topped with a thin layer of chocolate ganache. My mouth is watering just thinking about this concoction.
What I love about dessert bars is the layer upon layer of deliciousness--so many different flavors and textures that could be a giant mess, but somehow work together in perfect harmony. That first bite was ridiculous. It's no surprise that I'm a peanut butter fanatic, so I was already pretty giddy with excitement--but add the chocolate, the coconut flakes, the whipped cream, all fabulously balanced so the flavors complement each other--and you have one of the best dessert bars ever invented. Thank you, Anonymous Genius Baker of Nanaimo.
There was one more amazing stop in my new favorite historic distillery district, Soma Chocolatemaker. I really wish this was a real name because I would marry this man in a heartbeat--who wouldn't want to be Mrs. Chocolatemaker?
|One of the unique treats at Soma Chocolatemaker|
After leaning off CN Tower at the newly installed Edge Walk (another story entirely), as soon as I got to my hotel, I hit the gym. A very indulgent little stop, but completely worth it.