It was a glorious sunny April morning when I pushed my way through the Toronto 10k marathon on Yonge Street and arrived at French Bistro La Palette for brunch on Queen West. I was joined by Sally Hickson who taught me Italian Renaissance Art History way back when at the University of Guelph. The last I had seen her was just before I flew to Dublin for my St. Paddy’s Day Press Trip when we attended the media launch of the AGO’s Revealing The Early Renaissance exhibit.
I would be taking Sally to an Opera that afternoon and thought a French inspired brunch would offer great sustenance and ambiance before marching into a Sunday matinee. The restaurant had been on my to do list since I moved to Toronto three years ago so was excited to finally pull open their doors. The front of the restaurant features massive windows overlooking Queen Street (perfect for people watching) and long bistro bar which overlooks an open kitchen. The walls are covered in cutesy Parisian brick and brack.
We started off with dopio espresso filled foamy latte’s which we sipped while pursuing the menu. Hat’s off to the culinary team at La Palette for offering one of the most interesting brunch offerings in the city. My eyes bulged as I noticed their eggs benedict is offered in four variations: foraged mushrooms and spinach, bacon, venison tenderloin and horse!
We spent a leisurely morning catching up on life, chatting about art and how it impacts us. Of course we tried our best to deconstruct the subject of Salome, a world we were just about to dive into. The fromage fondant was a perfect dish to start off with, an ooy gooey beginning. The punch of the cheese paired well with the fruit elements strewn across the plate. My canard clafoutis offered tender duck which contrasted well with the sweet of maple and blueberry spotted clafoutis. Sally’s crepe offered crispy lamb neck which was accompanied by savoury potato, herbs and olives.
The Brunch Feast:
Numerous Foamy Latte’s
fried triple creme camembert, huckleberry compote, roasted granny smith apple and garlic puree
Canard and Clafoutis
maple glazed duck leg confit, blueberry clafoutis, autumn berry jus, chantily
Crepe a L’Agneau
lamb neck crepe with oven roasted toamtoes and peppers, tarragon, arugula and fennel, warm potato, chorizo and nicoise olive salad
#459 restaurant reviewed in Ontario since moving to Toronto in 2010.