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Fresh Off The Boat Opens In Toronto


Fresh Off The Boat is a newly open ‘seafood joint’ in the city’s vibrant and cultured Queen West area (404 Queen St W), which holds a heavy, yet clever tongue-in-cheek Asian reference and flair. Nonetheless, owner, Quinten Tran (who was also one of the founders of “Buster’s Sea Cove” food truck) found its derogatory term to fit appropriately by embracing its cheeky double entendre suitable for a seafood-centric spot.


Although the space serves as a mini dine-in and dive, it mainly focuses on takeaway, but offers minimal and intimate sized eating accommodations with a couple of tables pushed back against an aqua blue (mimicking the sea) leather banquette, and a bar-style option on the opposite side.

The space has all the characters of a trendy and modern sea shanty—fish printed wallpaper, ropes, lanterns, a wall of uniquely framed pictures, and other nautical trinkets—plus a few Asian elements, like a floor-to-ceiling shelving unit filled with Sriracha bottles.


The chalkboard menu (divided into picture frames) lists about a dozen seafood options and sides, with an influence on Asian-Canadian flair. For instance, their signature sandwich is the FOB ($11.95) which is also known as their version of an Asian poboy banh mi: battered catfish, Kim chi and burned aioli, served with broccoli house slaw and fresh cut fries with a bit of heat.


You can also go for the deep-fried battered Soft Shell Crab sandwich ($14.95) with remoulade, lettuce, tomato, fresh cut fries and house broccoli slaw. The featured specimen was intimidating at first as its legs and claws dangle over the edges of the sweet, dense brioche bun.

Catering to pescetarians and seafood lovers, this new joint has its advantage, as it’s exactly what the Queen West strip is lacking. Although they are squeezed between Kinton Ramen and Rose City Kitchen, and on the same block as Banh Mi Boys and Burger’s Priest, they stand as their own competition. It’s safe to say that Fresh Off The Boat adds a fresh new take to what has quickly become a densely delicious corner of Queen West.




Next time you have that seafood craving, check out FOB and tell ‘em that we sent ya!

Posted by Christina Cheng

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We’re extremely excited to present an exclusive Hennessy Artistry “In-Studio Session” with Toronto’s Keys N Krates! If you’re unfamiliar with this trio, Adam Tune (drummer), David Matisse (synthesizer/keyboardist), and Jr. Flo (turntablist), successfully merge drums, keyboards, turntables and live sampling both on and off stage. Their unique sound lives seamlessly between genres, merging hip hop and electronic music, and creating remixed and original productions unlike any other band to date.

In anticipation for the upcoming Hennessy Artistry Tour, we got the chance to sit down with Keys N Krates at their Toronto studio to witness their unique approach to song creation and learn more about the ‘art of blending’.


“The Hennessy Artistry tour made sense to us from the get go,” says Adam Tune, drummer of Keys N Krates. “We reference everything from hip-hop to bass music in our beats, taking from whatever inspires us at the time. It’s cool how Hennessy is incorporating so many different types of acts into their live series.”

As part of the Hennessy Artistry Tour, Keys N Krates will blend and morph their set with legendary music producer Just Blaze. A force in the hip-hop scene, Just Blaze has worked with a myriad of notable artists including Jay-Z, Kanye West and most recently, Baauer, famous for his hit song “Harlem Shake.”


For more info follow @1LOVETO #ArtOfBlending

Merna – “The Calling” Album


Toronto songstress Merna (formerly known as Ayah) just released her full length album “The Calling”. Before you give it a listen, take in a few words about the project from Merna below…

To my friends & supporters,

A couple years ago, I woke up, a single woman in her mid 20’s, after being in a very long, young, and reckless relationship with someone who was very much a reflection of myself: emotionally unavailable. I’m sure we loved the very best way that we knew how.

I moved around a lot as a child. It was a great experience, enriching for my soul and mind. Cultures, sounds, music, people…Beautiful.

However, it also left me with a kind of separation anxiety. It’s human nature to want to hold on to things: materials, people, ideas, what people think of us, how we view ourselves. We’re also so scared of dying, that we hold on to life, even if it’s a life we’d rather change. Society has us so desensitized and distracted. I’m not sure we know how to listen to ourselves, to really feel, connect, live in our moments, evolve with nature, hear our call, to love.

The Calling is about all of these things. I collaborated with amazing producers, Makai Black and Ali Shaheed Muhammad, who created the most luscious, rich musical masterpieces so that I could tell my story.

What I want to leave you with, is a question I asked myself when I heard the call: “if not me, then who?”

I hope you love this as much as I do.

Available on iTunes

For more info, visit: mernakilledayah.com

Previously: Merna – “A Little More” (Live Performance)

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CONTEST: Win A Whistler Getaway For 2!


We’re super excited to announce the launch of the Adventure Series campaign with Bench. Canada! Bench. Canada is challenging YOU to an adventure! We Dare YOU to #Adventurewithus on a #BenchAdventure photo challenge for a chance to win a Whistler getaway for 2!


Enter by following @BenchCanada on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and re-post the image below to accept the challenge!


Participate by posting your interpretation of each photo challenge by using #BenchAdventure and #AdventureWithUs.


NOVEMBER 3rd – Today’s #AdventureWithUs photo challenge is #NoComfortZones

NOVEMBER 6th – Photo challenge is #LiveFree

*Contest ends November 9th, 2014.

Previously: Joe Rockhead’s Indoor Rock Climbing Adventure With Bench. Canada

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Nike Celebrates Women’s Week


The week of October 20, 2014 marked the start of an incredible, moving and inspiring week for women across the globe. Nike Women celebrated Women’s Week in New York City with a Media Launch Summit for women who are apart of the media field and apart of living a healthy and athletic lifestyle. With that being said, Nike Women was able to connect with 65 million women across the global digital community by inviting a handful of women from various cities and countries to connect with their active followers via their social media networks/handles in hopes to inspire and motivate each other by sharing their individual experience throughout the summit, and to encourage women worldwide to keep it moving!

Throughout the week, each women apart of the media launch summit was in for a treat. On October 22, Nike (NYSE: NKE) unveiled its new Spring/Summer 2015 Women’s collections in New York City at Spring Studios with 27 of the world’s top athletes, showcasing a breadth of performance and lifestyle products as well as digital services as it continues to accelerate growth within its women’s business.


“Sport and fitness are powering a new lifestyle shift for women around the world,” says Mark Parker, President & CEO of NIKE, Inc. “Our relationship with our digital community of 65 million women, coupled with great product innovation, is driving our momentum and we expect to add another $2 billion in revenue to reach $7 billion by FY17.”

According to statistics and research, women all over the world are choosing to work out and run with Nike. The Nike+ Training Club App (N+TC) for women has been downloaded 16 million times and 9 million women have downloaded the Nike+ Running App. The Nike+ digital community is a global ecosystem of inspiration and optimism, using knowledge and community to motivate. By offering athletes at every level a better understanding of themselves, Nike serves as the direct link between the female consumer and her goals.


Nike’s Spring/Summer 2015 Women’s collections feature new performance looks and designer collaborations catering to every element of a modern woman’s athletic lifestyle. These include new products across Nike’s running, training and sportswear categories, ranging from high-performance tights to Nike Flyknit footwear to innovative new sports bras.

“With such an explosion of creativity in sport and a growing lifestyle that seamlessly integrates her run and workout with the rest of her day, Nike has never been better positioned for growth,” says Amy Montagne, VP/GM of Nike Women. “Today we’re introducing the most comprehensive and innovative women’s collection Nike has ever created.”


The global lineup of athletes in New York included Olympic gold medalists Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, Allyson Felix, Sanya Richards-Ross and Adelina Sotnikova; two-time tennis Grand Slam champion Li Na; and professional basketball star Skylar Diggins.

Nike also revealed its collaboration with Brazilian designer Pedro Lourenço, which meshes the latest performance innovation with Lourenço’s craftsmanship and reinvents classic women’s training styles with new cuts, shapes, and premium detailing. It’s a collection of training apparel and footwear that blends performance with a unique interpretation of style.


After witnessing upcoming athletic apparel, over 300 women apart of the media launch summit were invited to test out some of the new gear and participate in a live NTC workout lead by Nike Master Trainers — Eva Redpath and Traci Copeland at the beautiful and historic Cipriani on Broadway. The adrenaline and energy in the space was filled at an all time high as a crowd of women joined together to enjoy a fun, electrifying, high intensity workout.

Posted by Christina G. Cheng

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Toronto’s very own singer-songwriter Jessica Reyez, a current Remix Project participant and emerging artist, made a serious impression on Chicago-based rapper King Louie. Jessica met Louie while he was in Toronto and it didn’t take long for her to breakout her guitar and start singing. Needless to say, Louie was feeling her vibe, and before you knew it he had a verse ready for a the record now known as “Living In The Sky”, produced by Toronto-based producer Moose (also of The Remix Project).

Take in the track and let us know what you think? We’ve had it on repeat for the last couple of days.

Listen to more from Jessie here: soundcloud.com/jessiereyez

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As we get older our natural inclination towards fun activities and adventure doesn’t diminish, instead, what diminishes is the time and energy we can put towards unadulterated fun. Who doesn’t pass by a mini putt course and have strong urges to play a quick 18? Who doesn’t come across a wave pool and wish they had packed trunks in their briefcase? Fact is, as we transition into adulthood it is important to remember to make time to be a kid, or at least act like one as often as possible. Put down your phone and don’t answer that text because including fun in your life is as important or more important than work.


Bench Canada invited us out to Joe Rockhead’s as a reintroduction to the importance of adventure. We got a chance to experience something completely new for us – rock climbing. For those who have never tried rock climbing, we can promise you this; the challenge is real. No matter your fitness level there is a wall for you. From beginner walls to advanced walls you will find yourself using muscles that have probably been in hibernation since the day of your birth. Also, for those of us with a competitive side, getting to the top of a wall is as satisfying as it gets. Do yourself a favour. Watch Cliff Hanger with Sylvester Stallone then head over to Joe Rockhead’s for some fun!

We look forward to more opportunities for adventure with @BenchCanada in the #MyBenchAdventure series. In the meantime, we’ll be making time for new adventures everyday. Stepping away from the daily grind for at least a couple hours and just having fun. We suggest you do the same!





Posted by Jesse Ingalls

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Last week we attended the official launch of “The Creator Class”, a channel dedicated for those who share their passions for a living. It’s a new breed of creatives in Music, Style, Adventure, Arts and Culture that have become the voices of our generation.

The night was produced by FREE – a next generation content studio built for Creators, by Creators – in partnership with Canon. They featured the art of Camille Jodoin-Eng, the music of Dead Horse Beats, and the food of FeasTO. Everyone who attended also got the chance to get their hands on the brand new Canon 7D Mark II.

Some of the notable attendees included: Visionelie, Sean Brown, Jayscale, Jackie Beale, and many more.

With so much talent in the city, and around the world, a project like this only makes sense!





For more info, visit thecreatorclass.com

Congrats Chris & the entire team!

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As Amex Ambassadors and Platinum Cardmembers, we decided to take full advantage of the benefits of the card, which includes the exclusive American Express ‘Taste from Platinum’ Program.

We didn’t know what to expect, so we called the Platinum Concierge at 1-866-323-6979 to learn more about the participating restaurants in the Platinum Dining Program. The Concierge informed us that Amex holds a reservation at hundreds of the most acclaimed restaurants here in Canada, US and abroad. After letting the Concierge know that we wanted a reservation in Toronto, they named off some participating spots including; Weslodge, North 44, The Chase, Colette and Splendido. As soon as we heard ‘Splendido’, we asked for help securing a last minute table reservation with all the special ‘Platinum’ perks. The Concierge is also on hand to review menus and wine lists, and offer advice on house specialties; provide travel directions to your restaurant of choice; and make special arrangements such as accommodating a group or making sure flowers are waiting at your table.

We’ve driven by Splendido countless time’s, always making a mental note as a place we’d like to try. After tasting their incredible oysters at this year’s first annual Taste of Toronto Festival, we knew we’d enjoy this restaurant. What we didn’t know was that we were in for a unique dining experience full of fancy perks. The Concierge made sure we got the best seat in the house, complimentary champagne, one of a kind appetizers and even a small take home desert item.


Our night started off with a warm welcome and a chilled glass of complimentary champagne at the bar, accompanied by a delicious appetizer. We felt like VIPs right from the start!


We finished our drink and appetizer and made our way to the dining room, with the help of our server Aldy. (Side Note: Aldy is hands down the best server… ever!) After reviewing the menu options customized by the chef, we decided to go with Splendido’s 5-course meal, including: Caviar and ice-cream, lobster, oysters, sashimi, house-made bread and butter, carrots, steak, salad and more.




Everything Splendido offered as part of the Amex ‘Taste from Platinum’ Program surpassed our expectations. From atmosphere, staff, cocktails and of course the food, we recommend Splendido for your next special occasion. Tell them that we sent you ;)

Check out the full list of participating restaurants at americanexpress.ca/platinum

FYI: The Platinum Card is not limited to just dining, Cardmembers can take advantage of everything from exceptional travel perks from over hundreds of fine hotels & resorts, airport private lounge access, exclusive entertainment offers, and of course the impeccable Concierge service.

To learn more about the American Express Platinum Card, please CLICK HERE.

Follow @1LOVETO @AmexCanada #DineWithAmex #PlatinumDining

All around the world, Hennessy Artistry brings together some of the most talented artists on stage for an eclectic mix of music, ranging from hip-hop to pop, rock or electronic music, which we like to call the #ArtofBlending.

We’re excited to announce the latest edition of Hennessy Artistry Toronto for 2014, featuring live performances by Toronto’s very own Free N Losh and The Airplane Boys!!

You’re invited to join us this Thursday, October 23rd, from 10pm – 2am at Switch (55 Colborne St).

RSVP ONLY: events@1loveto.com for you & your guests by 5pm on Thursday, October 23rd.

Arrive early to guarantee entry. (Limited Capacity)

Must be of legal drinking age to attend.

Check out The Airplane Boys “On The Low” Official Music Video

Listen to the Free n Losh remix of The Weeknd’s song – “Often”

Previously: Hennessy Artistry “The Art of Blending” with Questlove

Follow @1LOVETO #HennessyArtistryTO #ArtOfBlending