With an extensive background in the media industry, Sarah B. Hood takes writing very seriously. Her diverse background explores the culture of food, fashion, urban life, environment, and the arts. Oh, and she’s a staunch lover of her neighbourhood, Leslieville.
In the past, Sarah has been an editor for three national Canadian publications, like The National Post. With a rewarding career in the publication industry and her very evident love affair with all things food, it’s no surprise Sarah has won numerous awards (the National Magazine Award, The Kenneth R. Wilson Award for business writing, and Taste Canada’s Food Writing Award.)
Her blog, Eat Locally.Blog Globally, is a tribute to all things food. She explores Toronto’s local restaurant scene while reviewing, testing flavours, and of course, preserving those jams! Let’s learn a little bit more about our foodie writer, shall we?
When and why did you start writing about food?
I find food interesting, along with art, literature, and fashion. As a professional journalist, I’ve been writing about food for around 20 years, however, I was writing in quite a few different places and about different topics; people didn’t label me as a food writer. I started my blog, Eat Locally. Blog Globally, in 2009 as a way to draw attention to my love for food and, of course, writing.
What do you love most about food?
Apart from the fact that it keeps us alive? I love the way it becomes associated in our memory with the people, places, and things we love.
What do you do when you aren’t writing about or eating food?
I’m crafty. I love reading books and going to movies and plays. I also like to spend as much time as possible with my family.
Do you cook? If so, what’s your specialty? If not, why?
Yes. I do make lots of jam, and I love baking. I’ve also been experimenting with soups lately, and I have so much fun trying to replicate international foods at home.
What’s your favourite type of food(s) and where do you go to get it?
Fresh, simple, local food and preferably made at home. I shop at the Leslieville Farmers’ Market, and grab my bread at local bakeries such as Altitude, along with meats from shops including Sausage Partners.
What’s your favourite hidden gem?
They’re pretty well known in my neighbourhood, but I love the lads at Chino Locos (two locations: 4 Greenwood Avenue, and 459 Church Street) for their righteous burritos.
What’s your go-to restaurant?
Udupi Palace, which specializes in authentic South Indian vegetarian cuisine. They are located at 1460 Gerrard Street East.
What’s the most memorable meal you’ve ever had?
I could give lots of different answers to that question, but just for fun, I’ll say beef fondue at the Caveau des Arches in Beaune, which was accompanied by some very pleasant wines indeed, and Armagnac to finish.
What’s one restaurant you have to try before you die?
I have no special ambitions in that regard. I love $10 Asian or African meals as much as the fanciest fine-dining establishments on the planet, so I’m awfully easy to please.
What’s your biggest restaurant pet peeve? (Play nice.)
These days I have very little patience for expensive restaurants that serve unsustainable fish, offer no local wines, and provide no vegetarian or heart-smart options on the menu. That’s so unkind!