One of the wonderful things about Toronto is the wealth of dining options. Every cuisine, every taste, every whim and fancy is catered to, with varying degrees of punch and panache. From food trucks to street meat; fine dining to fusion fare, Toronto offers diners the best the world has to offer, amidst a vibrant, trendsetting city backdrop.
“Located at the exquisite flagship Four Seasons Hotel Toronto, Café Boulud serves a menu inspired by Chef Daniel Boulud’s French roots, inflected with international flavors. Dishes are timeless and expertly executed by Boulud’s talented team of chefs, from the signature Potato Wrapped Sea Bass over leeks and pommes purée to a hearty Slow-Roasted Veal Shank for Two. Downstairs from the café is dbar, the lively bar and lounge serving an array of bar-friendly faire, extensive wine list and unique mixed cocktails.” – Cafe Boulud Toronto
Recently, my husband and I had the fortune of dining at Cafe Boulud, where we experienced a celebration of delectable French cuisine. While I teased photos of our selections via Twitter and Instagram, here is a tribute to our meal from beginning to end.
NOVA SCOTIA LOBSTER SALAD
iceberg lettuce, marinated quail’s egg, cucumber
avocado cream, marie rose
The plump, delicately poached lobster meat is complemented beautifully with a creamy, refreshingly bright sauce. As soon as the dish starts to border on over-indulgent, a sharp, acidic bite of marinated quail’s egg restores the palette’s equilibrium and balances the richness of the dish.
SEARED FOIE GRAS
bulgar wheat, cumin & hazelnut spice
Allowing a single, savoury forkful to melt on the tongue, Cafe Boulud’s foie gras is the epitome of luxury. The carmelized outer shell is in perfect contrast to a creamy center, and faint middle eastern spice notes elevate the flavour profile and lend a hint of fusion flair. Truly a feast for the senses.
spanish fried rice, mussels
clams, chorizo, gulf shrimp
squid, garlic & saffron aioli
Perfection on a plate. The spicy chorizo sets the tone for the entire meal, lending a salty, earthy flavour that permeates every bite. The rice – fried to a crispy, sticky texture – is in contrast to the delicately prepared seafood, and adds a pleasant, almost rustic vibe to an otherwise dainty dish.
CUMBRAE DRY AGED BEEF
dry-aged cumbrae filet mignon
bone marrow, confit shallot
pommes pont neuf, parsley salad
The bone marrow bathes the filet mignon in essential fattiness, imparting a slick, too-rich taste of utter luxury. The beef is dry aged and has an impossible buttery texture, melting in the mouth with ribbons of deep, primitive flavour.
sesame halva, rose loukoum
A menu classic; a whole grapefruit is hollowed and lined with house made grapefruit sorbet. At the bottom, fresh grapefruit segments and grapefruit jam, topped with white sesame foam. Above, glossy cubes of rose lukom and halva crumbles. Sealed with a caramelized tuile, it is finished with a crown of shredded halva “hair.” And, it’s a must-taste dessert if you are in Toronto.
sable breton, pink pepper meringue
pistachio ice cream
Delicate slices of perfectly ripe strawberries tumble together in a pyramid of delight. Crispy, light-as-air meringues are dotted strategically to complement every bite, while the cookie-like cracker and pistachio ice cream offer necessary textural support. A refreshingly tame ending to an embarrassingly rich beginning.