Last Saturday, Brody and I made a dinner date with another couple. Now, normally, a “dinner date” implies we will eat good food will getting elegantly wasted, meaning that at the end of the night, regardless of the quality of the food, we will still have all had a good time.
Small challenge this time. One member of our party has recently become preggers, so the challenge this time was to find a place that we ALL could really enjoy on a Saturday night, without the heavy booze haze.
We’ve all heard alot about BARQUE recently so decided to give it a go. However, when we tried to make reservations, we were offered 2 options, 5 pm or 10 pm. Neither sounded appealing. So we decided to wing and see what we would get by heading there sans reservation.
We met outside the place at 8 only to be told it would be 1.5 hour wait. In hindsight, we should have taken that 10 pm reso but whatever. We went to a wine bar down the road for some apps and caught up. We got the call at 9:45 that our table was ready.
The place was still jumping at this time, with more people wanting to get in. The entire restaurant smells amazing and the atmosphere is pretty relaxed, but you totally know it’s the “hot Toronto spot” right now by the diverse crowd. Everyone wants to try it.
Anyways, first impressions. If you are a wine drinker, forget about it. No wines by the glass if I can recall and bottles start at 60-80 bucks for the cheapest. I guess they really want to push the meat and beer aspect of the place which is fine, I can get behind that. When in Rome and what not. Though I do enjoy red wine with my red meat.
No biggie, I had one of their special beers on tap. Though just one. Beer with all that meat is too filling.
You are treated to some lovely popcorn and your place settings come with a sauce brush. I immediately knew this would be an epic meal.
Each couple ordered the sampler for two at $45 a pop.
We went with the brisket, rack of ribs and chicken thighs along with the fries, ceaser salad and tomato avocado salad.
Sorry, I got crappy shots of the meat. I can say this. It is no wonder the place is jam packed with people literally waiting hours to get in. My mouth is watering while I write this. BARQUE has the best meat I have EVER had in my entire life. It is to die for. Tender, succulent, fall-off-the-bone, decadent meat.
There was more than enough for everyone, we ate with our hands and used our little brushes and were very merry. I can’t wait to go back (with a reservation this time). Reasonably priced, amazing atmosphere and great service and the food was beyond PERFECT!
BARQUE - 299 Roncesvalles Ave