I love this business.  Always expect the unexpected.  So after spending the better part of two weeks anxiety-ridden over the prospect of having to move to Toronto, I finally made peace with the possibility.  I listened to the assurances of friends, family, and representation.  I did more research on the franchise and, had to admit, it looked like a lot of fun.  I met the major players – over the phone – and found them smart and committed to producing a really great show.  This morning’s conference call went swimmingly, the final hurdle before our big week-long pow wow in Toronto that would get the ball rolling.  Actually, not the final hurdle.  The second to final hurdle, the final hurdle being, of course, a general agreement on our deal. Nuh uh uh.  Not so fast!  The deal-making process has hit a bit of a snag so I’ll hold off on unpacking that winter coat for the time being.

Damn.  I’d even gone through the trouble of putting together a preliminary restaurant list for my five night stay.  Thoughts?

The Black Hoof: Specializing in offal (that’s organ meat, kids!).  Menu highlights include brain ravioli, duck heart tartare, and thinly sliced tongue sandwich with tarrragon mayo.  #1 on my list.

George: Highly recommended by none other than Robert Cooper himself.  Menu highlights include pork belly with ricotta cavatelli and chocolate mousse with coffee meringue and pumpkin butter.

Lai Wah Heen: High-end Chinese.  Menu highlights include wagyu dumplings and lobster dumplings.  But given all of the terrific Chinese restaurants in Vancouver, it’s doubtful I’d make time for one in T.O.

Sushi Kaji: High-end sushi.  Unfortunately it’s only omakase so there’s no online menu to check out.  Also, Vancouver is chock full of great Japanese restaurants.  See above.

Splendido: Named one of Toronto’s Top 10 New Restaurants of 2010 by Toronto Life.  Menu highlights include venison raviolo with porcini mushrooms, and foie gras parfait.

Nota Bene: Popular with Toronto “in crowd” (which is, I suppose, both good and bad).  Menu highlights include the stilton beef brisker burger and molten chocolate cake with peanut brittle ice cream.

Scaramouche: Thirty years old and still considered one of the city’s best.  Menu highlights include red wine braised beef short ribs, lobster ravioli, and soft pistachio meringue.

Canoe: Fine dining with an awesome view of the city skyline.  Menu highlights include tea-smoked duck breast with foie gras, pork with lavendar and crispy pig ear, and warm sticky date pudding with whisky sauce and toffee bacon crunch.

Buca: An honorable mention in that Top 10 New Restaurants list, Buca serves up “artisanal Italian”.  Menu highlights include fried pig ear and eel, and house cured salumi and lardo.

Colborne Lane: High-end, innovative dining.  In addition to a ten course Chef’s menu, the restaurant offers a fifteen course kitchen table tasting menu (“Hey, you, eating the soup. Can you come over here and stir this risotto for me?”).  Menu highlights include wild mushroom risotto with whipped mascarpone and black truffle.

Well, I’ll know either way come tomorrow afternoon.  Plenty of time to book that Monday flight – and make those dinner reservations.

Still no word on the Stargate front.  Sorry, gang.  When I do hear, either way, I promise you’ll be the first to hear.

Just got a text from my old Tokyo drinking buddy, Ivon, who is at home, replicating some of the cocktails we enjoyed at Star Bar.  He’s already done the gin and fresh pear juice, now moving on to the Moscow Mules.  I told him that, just the other day, I invented my own drink.  I mixed together every fruit-based liqueur in my liquor cabinet (banana, watermelon, raspberry, grapefruit, lychee, and peach schnapps) and called it a”Fruit Cocktail”.  Also, tonight, I’ll be experimenting with Jaegermeister and Apple Fresh dishwashing liquid.  According to Ivon, that one’s called a “Bubbly Lady”!

 

47 thoughts on “January 27, 2011: Not so fast!

  1. Gah! All this time staying in the dark without information makes me really hope MGM allows for a third season – that’d also give time to shop the show to another US network, I’m guessing?

    It surprises me that Canada can get higher ratings for SGU when they only have 10% of the population, and SyFy couldn’t. I don’t know what the reason for that is, but I’d be interested to hear your theories.

    -Chris

    PS, how could you possibly turn down Chinese food!? :-O

  2. I can’t comment on the restaurant list, but if you feel like some sci-fi book shopping while you’re in town, Bakka Phoenix is great, and they’re in a new location at Spadina and Harbord. They’ve got “Masked” on the shelf as well!

  3. “Still no word on the Stargate front. Sorry, gang. When I do hear, either way, I promise you’ll be the first to hear.”

    Ok, Thank you very much for the updates and Best Wishes to you and everyone else involved in the StarGate franchise. 🙂

  4. Hey Joe,

    No wonder you were having some health issues –
    sliced tongue?! brain ravioli? duck heart? fried pig ear and eel?! Oye! Do you carry a bottle of pepto bismol with you?!
    I thought I had mistakenly turned to some horror blog for a sec!
    lol
    Although lobster dumplings sounds interesting.

  5. Regarding The Black Hoof, is your name Joseph Mallozzi Zimmerman? Brain ravioli and duck heart tartare? WTF? As if cod sperm wasn’t enough!

    Hope it all works out the way you want it to 🙂

  6. @The Black Hoof

    Ewww, there is seriously a place that serves all that?
    I hate seeing stuff like organs and stuff on TV/Offline, I find it all gross personally.

    Not surprised a place like that exists, must be a place not for the squeamish anyhow.

  7. Really, Joe…REALLY?? Jäger is best served straight, and icy cold. If you can’t handle that, you need to stick with green tea. (BTW – Jäger is a digestive, and it does work wonders for an upset tummy when sipped judiciously.)

    As far as restaurants go – if it were me, I’d have to try Scaramouche because I love the name, and it’s a well-established restaurant. However, that could also mean they’ve gotten lazy – perhaps check with locals once you get there.

    Stay away from the in-crowd places – it makes it look like you’re trying too hard. Unless, of course, someone invites you to come along…it always makes locals feel good to introduce newbs to the latest fad.

    For you (and probably Pendergast 🙄 ), the Black Hoof sounds right up your alley. Go for it!

    @ Deni – Speaking of bands and such, I love ancient music – it may be just about my favorite of all musical styles. The band Corvus Corax specialize in medieval music using period instruments. They’ve made efforts to interpret the musical rhythms as authentically as possible, and I like the results. Here’s a little taste:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MGYYiOSkCSY

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corvus_Corax_(band)

    das

  8. Bummer. Well, I hope even if this doesn’t work out, something else great will come along soon.

  9. Hey Joe,

    I looked on a map…just to make sure how far…far was. Wow…it must be colder there. Oh my….

    The job sounds interesting…can’t wait until the deal is done and you can make the BIG reveal. The legal end of the agreements can and do take their time. I am so excited to hear the news.

    Dish soap…are you crazy? That will give you the “runs” as in “run for the bathroom”!!!

    Your list looks…totally ick…to awesome. I would skip the body parts. No pictures of brains PLEASE!!!

    Best to you Joe,
    Always,
    Cheryl 🙂

  10. @Chris:

    Gah! All this time staying in the dark without information makes me really hope MGM allows for a third season…

    It is the waiting that is difficult… 😉

    @Joe:

    Funny you should mention Chinese Food…my wife and I are hosting a Murder Mystery this weekend; Hoo Hung Woo.

    Needless to say, I’ll be preparing Chinese Cuisine, including won ton wrapped egg-rolls, hot-n-sour and egg-drop soup, pork lo-mein, sweet and sour chicken, and General Tao’s Chicken.

    I tried to come up with a nice Chinese dessert, but everyone insisted that I make cheesecake instead. When you get known for preparing a certain dish it’s sometimes hard to break-out and try new things.

  11. Glad to hear about your clean bill of health. I’m relieved for you.

    Things not so good for me. My test results came back and my urologist is sending me to a nephrologist. I have too many “ists” in my life.

    But I’m putting that aside for now because there is nothing I can currently do about it. Tomorrow night, we leave for Plano, Texas, where I will meet some of the lovely women of Sci-Fi, which include Ms. Alaina Huffman, at the Women Of Sci-Fi convention. Looking very forward to it.

    I plan to take my laptop, but it tends to overheat, so it might not work out; if so, I’ll catch up with your blog on Monday. If that is the case, then I’m hoping you have a good trip.

  12. I’ve only ever had Jaegermeister twice. The first time it was followed by a shot of tequila and the second time was probably shortly after that because I can’t remember. Never drunk dishwashing fluid but I did offer some to my two-year old son the other day in a baby bottle. And no, that wasn’t shortly after the same tequila. I was stone cold sober and just curious how he would react. He wasn’t amused.

    MGM – or whoever it is – sure is keeping us in suspense about SGU/Stargate. I truly will be mightily gutted if they don’t find someway to at least wrap it up properly. It is the only show that has ever got me actively involved in a campaign to keep something on the air. If it comes to nothing, it could be cause for knocking back another Jager.

  13. @ for the love of Beckett – RE: TSO – yes, and no. I’ve heard a couple of their classical numbers, but I’ve never really followed their work (the holiday/seasonal stuff doesn’t interest me, so perhaps that’s why I’ve never gotten into them). Of course, I have thoroughly enjoyed what I’ve heard, but it hasn’t grabbed me…I guess it’s just not raw enough for my tastes. Ya know, I think…I really think they need less shirts and more bagpipes. 😀

    😉

    das

  14. Well if you move to Toronto, at least you will be much closer to your mom. I of course hope SGU has a renewed life and that you stay put for a while… but I am sure whatever happens, you will make it work.

    I still think you should become a chef or food critic. 🙂 Well and get paid handsomely for it.

  15. OK. You do a google search for Films and TV shows filmed in Toronto and quite an interesting list comes up. I suspect a couple of things on there would pull at the strings of your interest. It’s not ‘Gilmore Girls: The Next Generation’ is it? 🙂

  16. PS @ FtLoB – I can imagine that TSO is something to see live. Live performances – especially with this sort of music – are often more powerful and energetic than the recorded versions.

    @ Joey – I ordered that book for March! You BETTER keep on me about reading it…though you are gonna have one heck of a time dragging me away from this pasty Pendergast feller.

    @ Sparrowhawk – Remember how Mike said I made Elric pout when I fell for Zenith? Can you imagine what Mr. Doomed Lord Broodypants would be doing if he found out about Aloysius??! 😉

    das

  17. Joe,

    Typically, do producers get a percentage of the revenue generated from a tv series, or is it a straight salary with bonuses based on the ratings?

  18. Ya know I was actually surprised that you compiled such a long list of dining establishments for a trip to Toronto for what is essentially a business meeting. Then I was surprised that I was surprised.

    Apart was also surprised at your combining all fruit liquors into one drink. EEk that must have tasted weird. Though I can’t tell if you’re just messing around, because I wouldn’t put it past you to have actually done that.

  19. if you don’t mind my asking, how much money did you spend on food during your tokyo trip? I’m planning to go to NYC at the end of next month

  20. @ Chris: regarding Canada’s positive reaction to SGU. I think it had a lot to do with our Space Channel’s positive support of the show. Personally, I’ve noticed that Canadians tend to support shows filmed in Canada, no matter who is footing the bill. Unfortunately, since we have a small population, we often can’t afford to keep a show like SGU going all by ourselves. I was hoping that another country, like the U.K or Australia would come through and pay for part of the series. Then again, there could be plans to shelve the show for a few years, then bring back another new series similar to what was done with Star Trek.

    @PBMom: Good luck with your surgery. I hope you feel much better very soon.

    Joe, good luck with your “job interview”. Whoever the production company is that wants you and Paul, they’d be very lucky to get you.

    Patricia

  21. I’m not sure what to think of this. Has it been *already* or *only* been little over a month since cancellation news?

  22. G’day Joe

    Oh, I have had brains, not bad. LOVE tongue and tripe with rice. My Mum used to do it once a week and all of us kids loved it. Cannot buy it now where I live.

    On this new, maybe, gig. Are you and Paul a package, has to be both or neither? Say if you want to go but Paul does not want to up root his family and move, does that mean you do not go? Just being a sticky beak.

    Hugs
    Janet

  23. Coucou! ça va bien?

    Moi oui:)

    HUmm, merci pour ces adresses 😉 Je me demande bien combient vous pouvez faire de restaurant pas ans? lol..peut être autant qu’un critique gastronomique^^!

    Gros gros bisou 🙂

  24. Huzzah for a clean bill of health. I have an appointment next week for my annual “Am I Dead Yet?” check up. I’ll be scolded for not losing weight, reminded to check my BP more often, and told to be more active. The usual.

    The Black Hoof? I read the selections and immediately thought “gout”. Yeah, yummeh.

    When we went to St. George, we had dinner at a tiny place, The Bent Fork. I had a lobster ravioli in vanilla-champagne sauce with prawns. The sweet sauce was startling, but after a bite or two, extremely good. So lobster ravioli is now on my “oh hell yes” list.

  25. The Nota Bene sounds pretty good. As far as the ones with body parts though, not sure I’d want to do that. 🙂 I will echo some of the previous posters in saying that I sure hope SGU/Stargate is wrapped up in some form and fashion.

    Have a good day!!

  26. Joe,

    Big thanks for the heads up on the Moscow Mule. It rocks! It has become my new go-to drink. I can’t wait for summer. The flavor lends itself to pool-side refreshment. And sun baked hangovers…

    I’m surprised I’ve never had it before. I worked in bars for years, and also spent some time in Bermuda, where ginger beer is king. Dark N Stormy? Yes! Mule? Not a word.

    Have a great weekend everyone!

  27. You’re kidding about the “Bubbly Lady” right????? Go easy on me Joe, I’m really gullible.

    My restaurant choices for you:
    The Black Hoof
    Colborne Lane
    (kitchen dining! awesome! how can you pass that one up?)
    George
    Scaramouche
    Canoe

    For me, scratch The Black Hoof and substitute Lai Wah Heen, because I don’t get out to good Chinese places much.

    Hang in there, Joe. Best of luck with whatever the next week brings!

  28. PBmom: hubby had problems with his work laptop overheating. He took a can of air and clean out what dust he could. Then he bought a laptop desk ($10-20) with a cooling fan on it. Those things really helped.
    Have all kinds of fun!

    It would be a short list for me: Nota Bene, Scaramouche and Colborne Lane.

  29. If the Black Hoof is for real, I’d be fascinated by a report.

    Ever go to the Carnivore in Nairobi? What they serve that night depends on what they bagged during the hunt that day.

  30. I checked out West & East from the audio library. I’ve never read Harry Turtledove before. Is this going to be a good one?

  31. Just curious, these restaurants that you research and check out. Do you ever look for “green” places? Where everything is home grown and organic, where maybe the restaurant tries to minimize its carbon footprint, etc? Or at the price range you tend to eat, are they all like that? 🙂

  32. I hit up Toronto at least once a month (dang orthodontist) and since i’m a little low on cash I generally love The Pickel Barrel 🙂

  33. @ArcticGoddess1: No surgery yet although those are coming up, too. I think we have to wait to see what the nephrologist has to say. Knowing the wait time in the medical center, I probably won’t even be able to get in for 3 months.

    This time away is for FUN! Away time from our precious son to recharge our batteries.

  34. @TammyDixon: We use a fan. It’s just at end-of-life. It is from 2005. Got it to at least boot up again after taking it to computer fixer so I could get some files off there that didn’t make it to my backup (thank GOD). But I’m going to try it. Thanks for the suggestions though.

  35. @Janet

    Joe has said on here a few times that himself and Paul are writing partners, they don’t write every episode together but you’l see in the credits sometimes *Written by Joseph Mallozzi and Paul Mullie* Or something along those lines.

  36. Hey Joe & SGU fans,

    Here is a little fun with numbers. These were the current total of fans on each facebook page today as I tallied them up. They may differ already because when I went back to double check some of them and they grew already in the 5 minutes I took to do this.
    So here is today’s benchmark numbers. Maybe I might recheck these numbers for tomorrow and the following day (to get a small daily average). Then wait a week after that?

    Remember these were facebook fan page totals and they are in no particular order. Some of these are “official” sites and some are grass roots. I used the search criteria of SG, SGU and Stargate Universe (there might be more). I just grouped these in threes so a person can scan them easier.

    36,895 Stargate Universe (Tv show- Australia Page)
    11,572 Stargate Universe
    1404 SG:Unite

    12,183 Save Stargate Universe
    773 Beacuase We Love Stargate Universe
    518 SAVE SGU!!!

    191,207 Stargate Universe (Tv Show)
    64,502 Stargate Official Fan page
    886 Stargate Universe Awareness Campaign

    1007 Boycott Syfy: Save SGU
    2707 Sg Universe
    8 Stargate Universe

    Total fans that are a part of these facebook pages today (Jan 28, 2011) is: 323,662.

    I wish there was a way to account for the people signing up for more than one page to count each person once. I also wish there was a way to account for all the fans who are not apart of these pages but leave positive comments for SGU’s return on Syfy’s page.
    I wonder how many Twitter has… anybody?

    Then of course there is all those people who don’t do social networking but leave comments on blogs and discussion boards….

    Any how just thought it would be nice to share this with you guys and let you see some of the numbers of people who would love to see the show back on the air.

  37. Joe-san, hope your afternoon goes well. And that you and Paul are pleased with the results.

    PBMom/Hilda, hope you aren’t in pain right now and you guys are able to have fun together this weekend. Keeping you in my thoughts.

    Das, Yeah, Trans-Siberian was killer in concert. There were catwalks descending from the ceiling, only feet away, in excellent camera range, and the light show, but best was a wall of sound. You could feel the bass guitars strumming in your sternum, the lead guitars’ squeal steal through your ears and zip down your spinal column. Could still hear the music 2 hours after leaving the building. 😀

    Are you getting snow down in E-ville, Anne Teldy? What a snowy winter!

    Otros Ojos, where you be? Hope it’s been good stuff that’s kept you away. Give us a “holla!” sometime.

  38. Hey Joe!
    Can you tell me what are your favorite T.V shows besides Stargate of course ?
    Do you watch a lot of science fiction possibly ?
    I would like to know if you have seeen Torchwood, which is a BBC production ?
    That is my absolute favorite show besides Stargate.
    That show ran for 3 seasons on the BBC network , now after a 2 year hiatus , the show is going to be a joint venture by BBC and Starz network in the USA.
    The creator of the show is Russel T. Davies. He is the one that brought back Doctor Who , then Torchwood was a spinoff he created from Doctor Who. He has since left England and stepped down from Doctor Who. The reason why I am talking about this show is to bring up that the show may have never gotten a 4th season, but by thinking very creativly they were able to pull off keeping the show going for a least another season. The 4th season is supposed to run this summer on Starz in the USA and on BBC in England.
    I am pretty sure that Space carries the show in Canada. so if Torchwood pulled this off, then I dont see why Stargate ca’t do it too 🙂 !!!!

  39. @1007 Boycott Syfy: Save SGU

    Shocked so many people joined such a negative campaign against the Syfy channel. Not watching the network won’t save Stargate Universe, nor will it affect ratings of any of its programs(Well unless you all have nielson boxs).

    How silly. I mean Sanctuarys on Syfy too. You know that show with former SG1/Atlantis Cast, Crew, Producers. How could anyone want to turn their backs on that?

    Personally, if I wanted to join save SGU campaign, I would join a positive campaign. That way, when people speak of said campaign, they’d be like. Hey, these people didn’t want to boycott Syfy, and were respectful in their campaigns.

    Just saying is all. That’s one campaign that failed before even 1 person joined.

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