So just when I thought there couldn’t be possibly any more restaurants opening in the distillery district – BOOM! Cluny Bistro & Boulangerie (@ClunyDistillery) suddenly open its doors to the Toronto crowd among the many restaurants in the Distillery restaurant family. Truthfully, it makes sense to open a modern French Bistro. The Distillery District (@DistilleryTO) practically satisfies any crowd whether they’re craving for Mexican, Italian, Seafood or even grabbing a simple beer.
So last week, I had the opportunity to attend Cluny’s Opening Media Dinner. It was probably one of the most memorable tastings I’ve ever attended & not just because it was a 12 course tasting. But simply because each course was really well prepared and thought out. The menu is creative and adventurous. I managed to try an item or two that I never thought I would be eating.
The decor is gorgeous. It takes the past French tradition and adds a creative and modern approach. When I first walked in… all I could think of was how “grand” this restaurant was.
BREAD TO START
1st Course: Tuna Tartar “Nicioise”
- Egg, French beans, white anchovy, Nicoise olives
- The tuna tartar was great on the palette. I rarely have tartar with large chunks of beans but this totally worked for me.
- Bread was a bit too crunchy for me
2nd Course: Roasted Duck Poutine
- Duck fat fries, duck gravy, Etorki cheese, and sunny side duck egg
3rd Course: Qualicom Bay Scallop Crudo
- Watermelon, chili, peanuts, cilantro
- This was hands down one of my favourite dishes of the evening. Served cold, the scallops paired so well with the refreshingly cold watermelon pieces. The addition of peanuts gave the overall dish a bit of a textural contrast. Topped off with cilantro – yum!
4th Course: Spicy Watermelon & Tomato Soup
- Firm tofu, basil, oven-dried tomato
5th Course: “Buffalo Fried” Sweetbread
- Smoked blue cheese dip, heirloom carrot stick
6th Course: Ginger-chili fried frog’s legs
- Pickled celery, Vietnamese dipping sauce
- Your average menu doesn’t serve frog’s legs but yes I finally tried frog’s legs for the first time and yes I will say it tastes somewhat like chicken.
- Since it was deep fried, I couldn’t enjoy the full texture and flavours of the legs.
- Anything deep fried just makes it taste that much better =P
7th Course: Paillion Noir Roquefort
- Fresh figs stuffed with warm Roquefort, honey, toasted black pepper
8th Course: Veal Meatball “Tomhawk”
- Tomato braised, Parisian gnocchi
- The veal meatball was quite hearty – seasoned perfectly. The gnocchi had a powerful garlicy flavour but not over powering
9th Course: Moroccan Chickpea & Sweet potato stew
- Couscous, harissa, almond, apricot
10th Course: Passion Fruit Souffle
- Pistachio financier, vanilla creme anglaise
- I LOVED this souffle! When our server poured the vanilla creme anglaise from atop – it was love at first sight and bite
11th Course: Bittersweet Chocolate Truffle Bar
- Cotton candy, marshmellow, raspberry sorbet
12th Course: Macaron to go!
From the ambience of the restaurant, down to the wonderful service – all aspects of our dining experience was pretty on par. The ingredients and flavours in each dish were well thought out and truly embraced the spirit traditional french cuisine with a modern twist. I think a future visit is imminent…
This meal was complimentary but Foodinthecitytoronto.com remains unbiased in our content