We’re onto our fourth Summerlicious guide, and we have to say… we’re getting freakin’ hungry going through all these menus! Oophta! But, enough with our first world problems…
One of the best parts about Summer and Winterlicious is being afforded the chance to go outside your comfort zone and check out restaurants that normally wouldn’t attract your patronage. So, today’s 6-restaurant rundown is all about those eclectic and energetic spots that are a bit outside the trendy norm…
BerBer Social – Summerlicious 2013 Menu
Oh… You haven’t been to a party at BerBer yet? For shame, dear reader, for shame. We remember birthdays spent in the sultry downstairs dining lounge, drinking away our woes and toe-tapping along with the belly dancers. For Summerlicious, you can taste all their Mediterranean intrigue – from the arancini to the half rack of lamb, the salmon and parsnips to the icy BerBer pudding. Ancient ambiance awaits at this modern day social dining experience.
Probably having the largest offering per course of any other Summerlicious restaurant, Pan on the Danforth wants you to try pretty much whatever your heart fancies during the prix fixe extravaganza. We’re in love with Pan for its authentic menu, and can’t wait to dig into the traditional Greek cuisine. Try the Kolokithokeftedes (just call ’em zucchini croquettes when ordering) to start as they’re a-mah-zing. Then, keep tradition alive with the Kakavia, a classic Greek seafood dish of shrimp, mussels, calamari and scallops over fettuccini in a fresh herbed tomato wine sauce. And for dessert, there’s no question that the Milfei (puff pastry with vanilla cream filling) is your best bet.
Kirei Sushi + Bar – Summerlicious 2013 Menu
The Japanese restaurant that could, Kirei Sushi + Bar is an ode to the East located just east of Yonge. Their $25 Summerlicious dinner is the perfect chance to check out this upscale sushi and sake bar. Linger on your app of tuna and avocado tartare. Crunch your way through the tempura platter. And slowly savour the yuzu creme brulee.
Tabule – Summerlicious 2013 Menu
The Mediterranean meets the Middle East at this Midtown gem. An eclectically chic atmosphere provides the perfect backdrop for the prix-fixins that await for Summerlicious. We’re thinking the flash fried cauliflower should make an appearance at your table, and the same goes for the Hallum salad with pomegranate vinaigrette. Next, you have to order the Kefta Banadura, which sees skewers of Middle Eastern spiced ground beef and lamb atop a bed of garlic tomatoes. And for dessert, zero in on the Knaffa Ashta – angel hair phyllo layered with custard and topped with rosewater syrup. It’s pretty effin’ rad!
Byzantium – Summerlicious 2013 Menu
While you’re looking through the Summerlicious site menus yourself, you’ll notice that a lot of the more eccentric restaurants are offering up a multitude of choices per course. Byzantium – just like Pan, Kirei, Tabule, and BerBer – has more than a trio of trios to choose from. Luckily for you, we’re up to the task of decoding the best options. (Uh… you’re welcome.) So, we’re thinking that the pot of PEI mussels bathed in cider beer with smoked bacon, garlic, herbs and cream is a must order for your appetizer. As for the main, we’re going with the maple chipotle mustard roasted organic salmon fillet with spinach quinoa cake – mainly because it has a spinach quinoa cake and that sounds too interesting to pass up. And for dessert, the velvety strawberry mousse gets our smooth-lovin’ vote.
93 Harbord – Summerlicious 2013 Menu
Ya gotta love the Harbord Street strip. It’s so unconventional when it comes to cuisine – you’ve got The Harbord Room, Splendido, THR&Co., and the list goes on – and pretty much no two restaurants mimic each other in the ‘hood. We’re loving 93 Harbord’s Moroccan/Middle Eastern Summerlicious menu. Grilled calamari with Turkish fig salsa? Don’t mind if we do. Roasted lamb with apricot and almonds? Sounds delightful! Middle Eastern coconut and citrus cake with rosewater? You had us at coconut, 93, you had us at coconut…