This post is long overdue, and I apologize for that. I met up with Brian (@theurbancraze) and Ken (@inyourmouthTO) at 416 SNACKBAR (@416snackbar) to enjoy some awesome snacks while catching up.
P.S. Thanks for bearing with me in my previous post about the CNE. I know it was a LONG one so I promise this’ll be much shorter ;)
I’ve wanted to come here for awhile now! In fact, a bunch of us did come one evening, hoping to enjoy a meal of snacks but unfortunately the wait time was so long that we decided to head elsewhere (see what I did there?! Teehee).
The lighting = old-school tin lamp shades. They dim them so much!! D: It’s nice for the vibe they’re going for but not so nice for my Pentax kx whose sensor ain’t that big; meaning super grainy shots in the dark. Prepare yourself for some grainy photos! (editing the white balance was a nightmare because I don't shot raw)
While waiting for tables, some people just stand and drink. It’s that chill here! And also, a bit “exclusive” in that you gotta get here early or risk waiting a long time. In the centre back, you’ll see David (one of the owners, chatted with him a bit, very cool guy).
Ooh, so witty! :D It’s great to meet fellow proud Torontonians as both Adrian and David are. There’s a lot of awesomeness to be found here, you just have to look. It's relaxing and comforting to eat at a restaurant where the owners and/or chefs have a sense of humour.
China plate. No cutlery here. That never proved to be a problem though because whatever proved to be too messy to eat using hands was skewered or on top of something more “hands-friendly.”
OYSTERS (6 for $13) to start. Served with freshly grated horseradish and their mignonette sauce. I like mine as is or sometimes with a squeeze of lemon. The taste of the sea in your mouth! YUM.
One dozen please!
Stuffed zucchini flowers (6). As soon as I saw this on the menu my eyes lit up. I’d never had zucchini flowers before! And they’re super seasonal so you better enjoy them while you can.
And enjoy them we did. Stuffed with mint ricotta then deep fried, it’s like a snapshot of summer in your mouth. Maybe a bit too much stuffing for me…when it’s my first time eating any produce/meat, I prefer having it in its ideal state so I can taste the ingredient itself.
Steak tartare (6). These next two snacks came highly recommended by Ken. There are certain people whose judgment in food you can almost trust blindly. His for me, is one of them.
This is some good tartare! Good textural difference (some in the tartare itself, but the grilled slice of crostini is perfect) and the temperature was perfect. Very fresh. I’d order this again in a heartbeat!
Scotch egg benny (5). It’s currently 3:30am, I’m leaving for nyc in an hour and I’m drooling just thinking back to this. Can an egg get any better than this?!
The hollandaise sauce was perfect, torched a bit for some caramelization and a teeny crust that gives way as soon as your teeth sinks in.
The sausage is moist and ohmy do not get me started on the actual egg itself. You can see in the photo how utterly perfect it is. Enough said, are they open at this hour right now?!
Special: Devils on horseback (5). The name of this snack gives nothing away as to what it actually is, which is pretty funny and an interesting change.
It’s actually prunes stuffed with poached pear (or was it apple?), wrapped in bacon, and finally veal demi on top. It’s sweet and savoury, which I like. Definitely a bar snack as the alcohol (BEER!:D) would cut through it nicely.
At some point, the lights were dim to the point where this single candle became the light source.
The guys both got beers (Cheval Blanc and St-Ambroise Apricot Wheat Beer) whereas I opted for just water. Next time, I’ll be sure to have a beer to go with my food (and vice versa).
The last few days of the Play Me, I’m Yours piano installation in Toronto (saw and played on my frist one after dinner at LUMA). This was the one at the northeast corner of Queen and Spadina. Unfortunately the key action was all ruined so you couldn’t even play on it!
Further west on queen st, we found this one outside the Four Seasons. I can say I played piano on the same property where the national ballet performs! :D:D (I’m such a nerd…)
I really like how there is seating surrounding the entire bar.
Verdict? I’m coming back. If only for the scotch egg benny. But then, I enjoyed everything else as well so it’s happening. One day, I’ll come here as soon as they open so a table can be guaranteed. :D Met Adrian that evening, he was a really nice guy to talk to! Both owners are definitely doing things right here (except that lighting…oy! haha Or I’ll just bring a better lens next time).
Check ‘em out! http://416snackbar.wordpress.com/
5 out of 5 NOMs