What do you get when you pair a MasterChef winner with a Michelin star chef? One of the most anticipated restaurant openings of the year: R&D (Rebel and Demon). Alvin Leung, MasterChef Canada judge and Michelin star chef who already owns three star restaurant, Bo Innovation, in Hong Kong and one star restaurant, Bo London, in London, is now partnering with Eric Chong, Season 1 winner of MasterChef Canada, to bring an upscale Asian restaurant to Spadina Avenue, in Toronto’s Chinatown.
This powerful duo will indeed heat up the upscale Asian food wars in Toronto by bringing competition to restaurants like Susur Lee’s Luckee and Sam Tse’s Lai Wah Heen. However, there is plenty of space for all of these amazing chefs to play in the sandbox. Since Toronto has one of the biggest Asian populations in North America, the city is no stranger to this type of cuisine, and people are willing to pay top dollar for a luxurious Asian dining experience.
The menu is inspired by both chefs’ travels through Asia, and although the menu is primarily Chinese, some dishes such as Grandpa’s Fun Guo (chicken with black truffle) and Little Dragon Buns (spicy Sichuan lamb or chicken tom yum) are based on Malaysian and Honk Kong roots. There are also Canadian influences with dishes like General Sanders Chicken (Kung pao sauce, Sichuan maple syrup and Hong Kong egg waffles).
“The menu is a tribute to Canadian and Asian cuisine,” said Leung. “Just as this country calls itself a mosaic of cultures, so too does our menu. We combine the flavours and aromas of our Asian heritage with modern twists on our favourite Canadian dishes. It is very much a collaboration between myself and Eric.”
Now that we have you drooling, R&D is scheduled to open first week of April in what used to house Strada 241 (241 Spadina). Open nightly from 5pm, a lunch menu will be offered Thursday through Sunday from 11:30am to 3pm.
What are you most excited to try at this new MasterChef restaurant? Let Vv Magazine know in the comments below or tweet us @ViewTheVibe.