Yonge & Eg’s Dutch snack bar is the place to sip on gin
Noorden’s cocktail list focuses on Holland’s most traditional liquor
TRIPLE X MARKS THE SPOT
When it comes to finding Noorden, look for the triple X sign on the street. At the Yonge Street eatery, which was Quince in its previous life, Jennifer Gittins, Michael van den Winkel and head chef Peter Tompkins are dishing out contemporary Dutch-Indo cuisine. Inside the pop-up (it’ll remain open until 2018), patrons tuck into sharing plates and swill gin tipples against the backdrop of a graphic Amsterdam skyline.
THE PICK OF THE DUTCH
In the Netherlands, Dutch gin is the spirit of choice. Gin in its modern state has its roots in genever, Holland’s traditional juniper-flavoured liquor that reaches back to the 17th century. “People think they don’t like gin until they try a proper gin,”notes bar manager Mac Lebioda. Known affectionately as the resident gin whiz, Lebioda made a name for himself after winning Toronto’s Ginapalooza contest. “It’s all about finding what kind of gin really speaks to you.” With a stock of 45 gins, guests can go for a sipping gin, sample different G&Ts (they make a homemade tonic) or reach for one of the house cocktails instead.
A PERFECT PAIRING
Noorden’s signature creation is the Angry Dutchman ($14).“We started with the Bols genever ’cause it’s the only true recipe for gin,” says Lebioda of the Netherlands’ original spirit. In order to balance out the maltiness of the genever, he paired it with some herbal Green Chartreuse and StGermain elderflower liqueur with a touch of citrus to keep it fresh. Chili water finishes the cocktail off, resulting in a drink that exemplifies what Noorden is all about. “The genever is so Dutch, and with the chilies it’s so perfect because of the Indonesian influence in Holland,”says Lebioda. Plus it’ll warm you up in January. Noorden, 2110 Yonge St., 416-488-2110
Mac Lebioda pouring the Angry Dutchman