We’re just back from vacation to Zion, Sedona, Grand Canyon, and Las Vegas. And you’ll be reading and seeing more about that from me soon. But first, I wanted to finish this post I started before leaving, about my trip to exotic Toronto. I’ve already talked about the Daltrey part of that, but not about the foodie part (the second time a Daltrey has included visits to fine restaurants. So I guess that’s a tradition now.)
First up: Canoe!
We’ve been hearing about Canoe for years and years, and finally went. For lunch, because that’s cheaper.
It is a beautiful space up there on the 54th floor. Even though we had a somewhat cloudy day, it still offered an impressive view of Toronto.
We did feel slightly underdressed, as we were in our rock concert gear while most everyone else seemed to be on lunch break from their Financial District jobs, and therefore in business dress (the only nod to Friday being that many of the men didn’t have ties). Nevertheless, we received impeccable service. (And very prompt.)
For some reason this is now a two-star restaurant in Where to Eat in Canada, but to us, it was definitely three-star food. It’s not every day you swoon over squash soup, but theirs did taste divine, featuring a maple accent. Maybe even better than the wild mushroom soup Jean had, though no complaints about that one either. For mains, Jean had a beautiful goose cassoulet, and I had a salmon fillet that I’d hoped would be more smokey (it was described as “smoked”), but came with fairly amazing rice in broth. How often do you describe rice in broth as amazing?
Our dinner restaurant was a no-star listing in Where to Eat, and was indeed not as impressive as Canoe. Still, Vertical is not a bad place to go. It has fun, lively-looking bar area, and a quieter dining one. We were there quite early in a bid not to miss any of the concert, and our waiter was quite accommodating in not rushing us through the order selection process.
The meal was fine but not outstanding, except for one item: the haddock ravioli with truffle and chanterelle. Which sounds totally weird. But it was just delicious, with pasta of perfect texture, and a fantastic blend of flavors.
Le Petit Déjeuner
I don’t usually go on about breakfast, but I feel a need to mention Le Petit Déjeuner, on King Street East, because it had the most amazing scrambled eggs. Really—scrambled eggs. I’d never had such amazingly light, fluffy ones before. (The waffles were also quite delightful.) We got to wondering how they achieved this texture. Jean’s been studying the matter with the help of an egg cookbook written by a French chef. He’s getting closer…
The next part of this weekend getaway actually took place in Niagara-on-the-Lake, as part of a work thing of Jean’s. Included was a group tour of Tawse Winery (sometimes Jean’s job is really tough). Jean and I had visited before, but that one was the typical step up to the bar and try out a few tastes of wine type. This one featured four different wine stations, each with a food item that suited the wine being tasted, followed by a visit to the wine cellar where we could try any other wines they made. And, we were led on the tour by the vintner himself.
All the little appetizer items were very nice on their own, and did suit wine being highlighted. And those were all good, except that the Pinot Noir just wasn’t quite there yet. (The vintner agreed; we were tasting it before it was ready to be bottled and sold.) We got a full explanation of their wine-making process, and how it’s different from most other wineries, so I did come to understand why Tawse wines cost more than many. Despite that understanding, though, we still bought only one bottle each of their two cheapest wines, the Riesling and the rosé.
Our one winery stop on the way home was at Vineland Estates, in Vineland (would you believe). I wanted to go after having enjoyed their wines at the Solé dinner, but in the end, we didn’t even do a wine tasting here—they seemed a bit busy, and we didn’t want to wait. But, we did have a fine lunch. They have a very beautiful room with a view, enjoyable even on this day, which was gray and rainy. And all the food was very nice. We went totally seafood, sharing mussels to start, then Jean had the bouillabaisse while I had the smoked trout (which was as smokey as I’d hoped). Nice job on all the fish for being so far from the sea.