Cotton Candy & Toro Bravo

Last week I had a date night with my honey at the Blazer game. They played the San Antonio Spurs–and won! It was an exciting game and it was nice to leave with a win (unlike the last game we went to).

blazergame

While we were there, I noticed that the woman sitting next to me ate your typical stadium foods. She started with a huge order of nachos (with all the fixings), then donut drops, then cotton candy. This is in no way a judgment, just an observation. I glanced over at her as she ate the huge package of cotton candy and I started to wonder.

ConversationCottonCandy3

Is there any chance that cotton candy is as good as it was when we were kids? No way. There are a lot of things that I used to like as a kid that I’ve been terribly disappointed by as an adult. Somehow, I think cotton candy falls into that category. Either way, a walk down memory lane is not worth the staggering amount of sugar to me:

“It may look pretty with its light texture and pastel colors, but cotton candy is far from light in the sugar department. This carnival candy treat has an astounding 56 grams of sugar in a single 2.1 ounce serving. That’s 200 calories full of sugar, artificial flavoring, and artificial colorings. If you don’t destroy your pancreas in the struggle to produce enough insulin to tame all of that sugar – it’ll surely decay your teeth. This is one sweet treat to stay away from.”  (source)

Wow. 56 grams of sugar in a 2.1 ounce serving. How many servings are in a stadium package of the treat? I have no idea. I’m guessing it’s more than one serving, though.

What strikes me the most is that there is absolutely no nutritional value in cotton candy. It may be a stretch, but at least with ice cream there’s dairy in it, chocolate contains good things for your body, a Snickers bar has SOME protein in it….Like I said, a bit of a stretch, but all of those things are probably a better choice than cotton candy that has absolutely nothing in it but pure sugar.

What are your thoughts on cotton candy? Have you had it as an adult?

Toro Bravo

Before the Blazer game, Michael and I went to Toro Bravo for some snacks. Toro Bravo is one of the top five restaurants in Portland and we finally made it there! I’ve heard the wait to get a table is long and that’s always discouraged me from trying to go. We arrived there about a half hour after it opened, coming straight from work, and the place was packed but we lucked out with getting a table immediately.

Toro-Bravo

The vibe of the restaurant was very cool: trendy, hip, dimly lit, atmospheric music, pretty people everywhere. The kitchen was out in the open and from any table in the restaurant, you could watch them work. But there wasn’t any frenzy in it, just perfectly paired chefs creating masterpieces without breaking a sweat. And boy, did the food come out FAST!

I ordered the bread and oil ($1) and they refilled the bread at no charge. The first tapas dish came out within 10 minutes: the pork and apple filled empanada with a flaky, buttery crust and topped with a peach (I think) chutney.

empanada

Next up: the jumbo shrimp in sweet and spicy chili oil. (I did not get a photo of that.) The show stopper: the dates wrapped in bacon with smokey honey drizzled on top.

dates

I’ve had the dates before, at their sister-restaurant Tasty n’ Sons. I liked the ones at Toro Bravo much better, though. Instead of maple syrup, it was honey and the bacon and honey were so smokey, that was all I tasted–but in a good way! They were so good. I wanted two more of those suckers.

I loved Toro Bravo and would definitely go back. The tapas were fantastic and the prices were reasonable. My only complaint: it was so loud you couldn’t really have a conversation, certainly not a romantic or intimate conversation.

It was a nice place to relax and snack before the game. After we finished our last bite, we headed down the street to the Blazer game.

Enjoy the rest of your day. 🙂

12 Responses

  1. years ago I somehow got the duty of making cotton candy at my daughters school – I was covered in multi-colored strands of sugar by the end of the night. I do remember taking a bit of it, and it definitely wasn’t what I remembered as a child – ew!
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  2. I completely agree with the cotton candy analysis. Why even bother?!? You may as well just spoon sugar into your mouth. Why not go for some chocolate or something? Unfortunately, I think some people are persuaded by the “fat free” aspect of some candy, and that’s why they go for a sugar-laden choice versus something else. I think I’d rather have the fat from dark chocolate or nuts, and know that I’m eating something more substantial. 🙂
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  3. I never ate Cotton Candy as a child – I am definitely a weirdo! Probably because my divorced mom would NEVER buy her two children spun sugar when one was extremely hyper active. As an adult I too got tasked with making it and it still held no allure to me. It was fun to make, and I got to use a commerial machine and everything!

    You are right, it is nutritionally a zero. I’d much rather burn through calories by eating a Snickers or some icecream!

  4. I had cotton candy on my 21st birthday, the day that I relived my youth 🙂 We went to Rainbows End, which is NZ’s only theme park. Tiny, but does the job. I had a ball. Cotton candy (we call it candy floss here) was super sweet, but just as good as when I was a kid!

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