Joanne Kates reviews the marvellous mashups at new downtown hot spot Doma
Doma hits the nail on the head with its French-inflected Korean food
OWNER: Chef-owner Paul Kim
SCENE: The resto attracts a mélange of diners, blending older with younger, eager foodies and kids from the ’hood
SOUND: Tunes will change depending on the mood of the day (so aim for a sunny day, unless you wanna be glum)
POPULAR DISHES: Current hits are the grilled octopus and uhsun mandoo
DRINKS: Order up Koreaninfluenced cocktails, wine or beer from local breweries PRICE: $90 for two ($130 for tasting menu for two)
OPEN: Tues. to Thurs., 5:30 to 10:30 p.m.; Fri. to Sat. 5:30 to 11 p.m. RESERVATIONS: Book by phone, email or through OpenTable Marvellous mashups are all over the Toronto food scene, but none of the others are quite so exciting as Doma. Who could have thought up French-inflected Korean food? To my palate it’s a bit of an unlikely marriage, given the reliance of Korean food on heat and kimchi, as against France’s more nuanced gastronomic minuet.
But Doma hits the nail on the head. They start with an amusebouche — a tiny pot of vichyssoise that’s a cross between mousse and soup, all air and savour.
Doma lives in the funky little space just up from College on Clinton, where once was Acadia and then Red Sauce. It’s now a pretty plain white room, with little in the way of glitz or glamour. Same self-conscious downscale mindset applies to the servers, whose modus operandi seems to be that less is more. With such iconoclastic food, one does want to know what’s in it. As each course is set down, I ask these questions to the several servers. Do they think they’re cool for not answering?
If the food were not so fabulous, I might not want to go there. But I do. Again and again and again. Even the apparently pedestrian turns scintillating here. Waldorf salad, the ho-hum