This week I caught up with an old friend and, as has become customary over the past couple of years, I was asked to pick us a restaurant along Toronto’s Bloor Street West. I settled on the strip between Lansdowne and Dufferin known as Bloordale Village, an area that 7 years prior was home to a number of questionable pizza parlours (“Pizza Best” anyone?) and my first (and thankfully last) ever sighting of actual crack cocaine.
While some elements of the old neighbourhood are certainly still in tact, for better or worse, a lot of the old establishments have been replaced by a whole crop of trendy new restaurants and bars like The Emerson which I settled on based on a Chowhound thread (frequently a deciding factor in my restaurant choices).
Let me begin by saying that I enjoyed my meal and my time here. Aside from it being extremely hot in the back near the kitchen where we were sitting on a humid Thursday in late May, the atmosphere was quite inviting. The sound track was great (The Smiths were involved) and quiet enough that I did not have to shout to have a conversation – very rare in restaurants today. The other diners were also relatively relaxed – waxed mustaches were balanced out by polyester gym shorts etc.
The food was of the same flavour as the atmosphere. Having managed to squeeze a quick session at the gym before dinner, I opted for the largest helping of protein I could find on the menu: the 10 oz ribeye and a side of asparagus. I was not asked how I wanted it cooked but they brought it back perfectly rare, yet crusty and with a Yorkshire Pudding and a creamy sauce on top.
My dinner companion’s choice was a little more adventurous. She went with the slow-cooked rack of lamb gnocci which came on your grandmother’s dishware and gave me complete menu envy. I will definitely have to come back to give that a try.
All in all, a solid casual dining experience to be had at The Emerson.bloordale village, Food, Food Dudes, gastro, gnocci, lamb, steak, summer, toronto | No Comments »