This past week I traveled to Toronto for work. Since I was only there for roughly 48 hours I didn’t have much time to explore the city, but I still managed to have quite the delicious dinner at Brassaii.
When I traveled to Vancouver in January I had a couple of great dinners, so I was hoping that my experience in Toronto would be similar. I had read mixed reviews about Brassaii, but saw that it was one of the hot spots for the Toronto International Film Festival, so I figured if the food was sub-par at least I’d maybe get some stargazing.
I have to say that my dinner at Brassaii exceeded all expectations. The service was superb, the food was on point, and my coworkers and I were able to chat with executive chef Marcus Monteiro and pasty chef Mark Cheese which was a nice bonus.
After ordering a bottle of wine, we decided to start our evening off with a few appetizers to share amongst the table which included the crispy ribs, popcorn shrimp and the house cut-fries.
I normally don’t eat a lot of gluten because it doesn’t sit well with me, but crispy ribs were too good to pass up. They were coated in panko breadcrumbs and came with a Moroccan glaze and mint chutney on the side. The ribs were definitely a highlight of the night and I’m determined to recreate the Moroccan glaze at home.
For my entree, I decided to go with the pan-seared halibut which came with cucumber stewed vegetables and micro-greens.
Last time I had fish in Canada I was quite impressed and this halibut did not disappoint. It was light, flaky, and the fish melted in my mouth. I LOVE cucumbers, so the cucumber stewed vegetables complimented the fish nicely.
My coworker got the chicken stuffed with breadcrumbs, sundried tomato and mint and came with a side of couscous. The chicken was juicy and prepared perfectly.
Then it was time for dessert. Pastry chef Mark Cheese was kind enough to treat us to a dessert sampler platter which was out of this world.
Everything was so good that it was hard to pick a favorite, but the standout for me was the Hazelnut Crunch made with roasted pear, hazelnuts, gianduja cream and espresso sauce. Second favorite of the night was the carrot cake with yogurt cream, pistachio ice cream and valhrona blond dulcey.
If you ever find yourself in the Toronto area, be sure to check out Brassaii. Chef Monteiro prides himself on updating his menu frequently, so every time you dine there you’ll get the best of what’s in season.
Thanks to the team at Brassaii for a great dining experience! Hopefully I’ll be able to return again soon.