Where are all my health nuts at?! Listen up, you won’t want to miss this!
For all my health conscious fanatics and coffee enthusiasts, a new place has opened up on King Street West, a little west of Blue Jays/Peter Street. Calii Love has (finally) opened recently this week during the last few days of TIFF (Toronto International Film Festival), and you’ll want to come check it out.
Calii Love is a healthy fast food concept serving up fresh Hawaiian Poké Bowls, Acai Bowls, Superfood Smoothie Bowls and Coffee.
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Calii Love serves the following, each are delicious items that I’d love to try.
- Poke Bowls
- Acai Bowls
For those who might not have heard, Poke is the newest trend to hit Toronto and it is absolutely sensational because it combines raw fish and delicious rice with additional toppings! Poke (pronounced “poke-eh”) is the Hawaiian verb for slicing and loosely refers to cut raw fish seasoned with some combination of salt, soy sauce, sesame oil, sesame seeds, chilies, seaweed and wasabi. Poke is closer to the Japanese chirashi bowl of mixed raw seafood on rice with vegetables and seasonings. You can create your own Poke bowls or choose one of the pre-set bowls on the menu if you’d like.
I tried their small Humble bowl the first time, photo aboved. There was more sauce than I would have liked as I’m not big on sauce on anything! The fish was fresh, chewy and had nice texture. Each bite was a delicious mix of raw fish, (lots of sauce), rice and the seaweed. I’ve been starting to enjoy and love the seaweed every time I take a bite, it sort of grows on you.
The second time, I decided to build my own bowl because I wasn’t 100% sold on the available pre-sets. I chose to go with a large bowl as the small bowl was satisfying but not enough for my appetite, and I also wanted to try the salmon. The large bowl gave me the option of white rice or quoina, 2 proteins and 4 toppings. I started off with white rice, yellow tuna and salmon as my protein, and my toppings of cherry tomatoes, mango, avocado, and seaweed. The rice was harder than last time and in firm bites.
Another item I tried was their smoothie. I had the satisfied smoothie which had apple, mango, papaya, strawberry and a few other ingredients I can’t remember. The smoothie was $6.95 + tax, a tad expensive for me to indulge in frequently.
Their coffee was the first thing I tried, and it was the cappuccino with almond milk. The milk for their cappuccino is steamed and frothed to a nice 70:30 foam to milk ratio. Some people don’t know but cappuccino is more foam than milk, whereas a latte is more milk than foam. The cappuccino had a nice sweet almond taste and also nice foamy texture, coming from someone who doesn’t like foam. The cup is a nice size as well, but the drink isn’t filled to the rim. The cup design is my favourite, as the typography of “Good Vibes Only” is a great reminder for the day, and also looks fab for the gram.
Last of their offerings I ordered was the acai bowl. I ordered the LOVED bowl which is acai blended with strawberries and topped with different items each time. From the menu, it stated to be topped with blueberries, bananas, strawberry, coconut flakes and granola. The first time I ordered the LOVED bowl, it had blueberries, banana and coconut flakes.
The second time I ordered, it was topped with strawberry, a few slices of a banana (not whole) and some granola. It was even less than the first time…. which led me to question the consistency of the bowls when they’re being made. I didn’t even take a photo because it wasn’t worth my time or effort at all…. but it was o my instagram story if you took a look.
Reason: The poke bowls are tasty and with my growing addiction to poke, I can sense I’ll be making my own often. The acai bowls aren’t bad, not quite beautiful in presentation and definitely lacking the toppings as other places offer a variety of fruit and other toppings on their bowls. The coffee is one of my favorite during the fall weather as it’s not too strong (like it weaker on some days), but would love if it is filled a bit more closer to the top.
I love the open concept and design of the place, it’s very relaxing and chic. The long wooden benches are nice to complete some work while enjoying a snack. Not quite sure whether there are electrical outlets to charge your laptops or electronic devices, so I’ll have to check that the next time I visit. All in all, it’s a nice healthy alternative nearby and on a busy street. It has only been a week since they opened (unofficially) and the line each day grows more and more every time I visit.