So here is a funny story. The last restaurant I visited in Toronto before I flew off to Europe was Lil Baci in Leslieville for a quick and easy lunch. The day I return home I get an email cordially inviting me to the new Lil Baci Taverna in Davisville. This would be my first Toronto restaurant review since settling back in El Toro. I don’t know how that worked out but it certainly seems a bit magical.
Having been out of the Toronto food scene loop for over a month it was really nice to connect with my favorite food writers. We all sat down at a large table and were served the restaurants girth of a menu in one seating, family style. I had the great pleasure of sitting across from Christine Cushing and Nicki from View the Vibe. I’ve never experienced such hilarious conversation at a media dinner. I think I just had one of those ramble at the mouth evenings where I excitedly updated people on several of my fond foodie moments at the 60 plus restaurants I had just experienced in Europe. Christine did a great job at infusing the conversation with Greek cheer whilst passionately discussing her love for feta and the film My Big Fat Greek Wedding. I also brought up one of my favorite topics, “What words make you cringe?” I have always loathed the word gourmet because it has been so abused by the industry (gourmet chicken fingers for dinner tonight? What IS that?) I was so intrigued by Christine’s response, that she hates the world “meal.” The things you learn while feasting!
Lil Baci Taverna is a great new watering hole and offers a relaxed dining experience for those living north of Bloor. The restaurant features ceiling to floor glass windows that provide ample people watching (read: hot boys jogging) during your meal. The group of us were wined and dined for what seemed like eons. I was ever so pleased to be introduced back into Toronto’s ever growing culinary landscape at Lil Baci Taverna. Italian food has made Toronto so famous. Or is it the other way around?
I enjoyed (*notes my favorites):
limoncello, lemon juice, wedge of lemon, prosseco, sparkling soda, mint
pear gin fiz
cynar, gin, pear nectar, lemon, soda
zucchine and pecorino, duck liver
charcuterie board *
duck bresoala, duck and pork pate, mortadella, testa with pistachio gremolata
taverna salad with anchovy dressing
fennel, carrot, radish, dandelion, olives and egg
fried duck egg and asparagus
pan roasted prawns with fried bread and aioli
mortadella gnudi with misto of mushrooms and mascarpone *
duck and bread sausage on slow cooked white beans and dandelion *
bowl of beets with burrata *
funghi pizza with tallegio and truffle
pappardelle with duck ragu and chantrelles *
ricotta cavatelli with fava and roast tomatoes
pan roasted mennonite chicken with olives, tomato and jus
flat iron steak with charred onion, bagna verde and rosso
charred cauliflower with vinegar
braised cavalo nero with bread crumbs
crispy fried potatoes and herbs
fava and greens with garlic
upside down chocolate tart with mascarpone
upside down lemon tart with mascarpone
vanilla panna cotta with cherries cooked in port, pistachio and dark chocolate
#329 restaurant reviewed in Ontario since moving to Toronto in 2010.