Monthly Archives: December 2014

Sheba- An Authentic Ethiopian Experience

While I hate to make my readers drool in front of their computer screens, you must understand my affinity towards food blogs. Because I’m a bit of a foodie, and because I just love food in general, I often like to try dishes from different cultures. Over the years, I’ve tried many different cuisines and I have come to know and love Ethiopian food. While Ethiopian food started to gain a bit of popularity in Toronto, it’s still not overly popular outside of its native region. But I thought I should let you know that it’s absolutely delicious… especially when it comes from my favorite spot in Toronto.

Sheba is, by far, my favorite Ethiopian restaurant in Toronto. It is a great little restaurant located at College and Bathurst, it is family owned and operated by three sisters; Seble, Assi, and Blane. Now, before you start Googling pictures of Ethiopian food, I must say that Sheba’s food is always beautifully presented and it is simply delicious. If the food isn’t enough to entice you into paying Sheba a visit, you should know that the three sisters really know how to host guests with their amazing hospitality. Everything from the injera, which is the flatbread, to the meat, to the seasonings make Ethiopian food one of Miriam and I’s favorite foods. We love it so much that we often take our friends to Sheba when they’re looking to try something new and they end up taking their friends who end up loving it just as much as we do!

After many visits to Sheba, my wife and I have picked out some of our favorites that we highly recommend. I love the Cha-Cha Tibs, which are pieces of lamb served on a sizzling hot plate, while my wife tends to be a bit more adventurous and orders the Kifto Regular which is an Ethiopian steak tartar. While we’re both very much meat-eaters, Sheba’s food is so great that we love the Mama Shiro on their vegetarian menu. Their veggie menu is so delicious that it’ll convert any meat-lover into a chickpea lover! All of their food is very tasty, colorful, and super flavorful. Now, before you fill up on the main course, you should let the sisters know that you want the Ethiopian coffee for dessert. It’s freshly roasted and prepared while you eat, and it’s ceremoniously delivered to your table at the end of your meal with incense and freshly-popped popcorn that perfectly compliments this delicious treat.

Seble, Assi, and Blane, the owners of Sheba, have come to be good friends of Miriam and I. We love dining at their restaurant. Their level of hospitality and customer service is one of the best that I have experienced from a small little place like Sheba and they keep me coming back every time. So the next time you’re feeling adventurous, pay Sheba a visit!


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Efficient Service at the Canada Revenue Agency

Most of us think of the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) as “The Taxman”, but they do more than just conduct audits and collect taxes.

Not too long ago, I called the CRA looking to get information about how to close a corporation. My previous experiences with them have not been the greatest. I know that the CRA receives a high volume of calls, so being placed on hold is understandable. However, based our past history, I expected to be placed on hold for longer than normal. Furthermore, there have been multiple occasions where in order to get the information I needed, I was transferred to several representatives. In some instances, I had to further research even after talking to the representatives because I was given insufficient information.

I’m not one of those people who will criticize a company, or in this case, a government agency without showing a light at the end of the tunnel. I mention my previous experiences because when I recently called the CRA, I was pleasantly surprised to get in touch with a representative who was not only very helpful with answering my inquiries, but also took the time to walk me through the process of closing a corporation.

Things went much smoother than I expected; the representative expedited matters to other departments which made the overall progress faster and, in the end, saved me some quite a bit of money.

Unfortunately, there was a short delay though it was not their fault. One of the reasons that I needed to close the corporation was for its tax returns. The CRA representative have been sending the tax returns to the wrong address. Their record had the wrong address. This minor hiccup was resolved quickly, and the tax returns were eventually sent to the right address.

Although I did get the necessary information and insight on how to go through with closing a corporation, I would recommend getting a lawyer involved to go through all aspects of this process.

Canada Revenue Agency – Business Inquiries


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Microsoft Generates Accessible Customer Service

Recently, I had a great experience with Microsoft, which I wanted to share with everyone.

Presently, I am working on a project which involves another company, another website, and Microsoft Outlook managed email. This not an email address that I use very often, so sure enough I had an issue where I forgot the password. The way Microsoft works when attempting to retrieve your password is all processed automatically, so I had to reply to an email with answers to their questions, in order to verify that the account belonged to me.  At some point, a representative would look at the information I provide, and decide whether this account had belonged to me, or whether it is just a spam.

Since I didn’t use the email too often, I didn’t have the information the automatic emails were requesting, and started to worry about gaining access to the accounts.  In a last ditch attempt to get the work back on track, I decided to call Microsoft Canada, directly, to see if they could assist me over the phone.  Surprisingly, I managed to connect to a real, live voice at the head office switchboard.  The fellow who answered the phone was pleasant to deal with, and after I explained my challenge, he connected me to someone else, who he felt could assist me.  Since this was not successful, I returned to the switchboard, at which time, he took some details about my situation, and indicated that he would have someone contact me as soon as possible.  Within a day, someone had emailed me back, asked me a few questions about my account, and a day later I was back, up and running, with access to my email.  The very next day this same employee managed to get me access to a second email address.

For a large company, that is technology focused, Microsoft was a pleasure to work with.  Unlike many other websites, and tech companies, that only seem communicate with their customers, online, it was nice to receive that one on one customer interaction, over the phone, rather than dealing with a crisis situation through an automated voice recording  or email.  They provided great customer service and delivered results quickly and effectively during a stressful time.  It is truly reassuring to know that a large company, such as Microsoft, is available, accessible and truly willing to help out when a customer is in need.


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Sizzling Service at the Copacabana Brazilian Steakhouse

A couple of years ago I had come across a restaurant called Copacabana Brazilian Steakhouse.

The restaurant is located on Eglinton Avenue East in Toronto, and since that time they have opened up in Niagara Falls, and earlier this year on Adelaide Street East near John Street.

Whether you are a vegetarian or the ultimate meat lover, this all-you-can-eat restaurant cooks up something for everybody. How does it work? The servers frequently come to your table carrying large meat trays and if you want a piece, they will cut thin tasteful slices off for you. There are over 20 meats to chose from including parmesan prime rib, garlic sirloin steak, rack of lamb, salmon, and BBQ chicken. In addition to this, the buffet menu options include salads, breads, pastas, mussels, deli meats, cheeses, and various vegetables. Finally, for dessert there is grilled pineapple and deep fried bananas, both of which are very tasty and the perfect end to a great meal.

The moment you step in you will notice the upbeat atmosphere. The live Latin-themed music will get your groove on while you set your eyes on some talented Brazilian dancers. You can expect an energetic 10-15 minutes show of magnificent dance routines and outstanding costumes during each dinner sitting, followed by the opportunity to take some photos.

The staff are very attentive to your requests and while I was initially concerned whether it is truly a family friendly place, they are extremely good with children.

Adults pay $45.00 each and the price for children varies depending on their age. I personally recommend making a reservation well in advance, but they also have first come first service tables.

The all you can eat meal, live entertainment, and excellent service is a perfect combination. Just don’t forget to come with your appetite!


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