Openings, closings, events and other news from T.O.’s food and drink scene
Hawthorne updates menu
Hawthorne Food & Drink (60 Richmond East, 647-930-9517, hawthorneto.ca) chef Ricky Casipe has rolled out a new menu with some small, artful plates. Try a bone-marrow canoe studded with roasted brussels sprouts and topped with a bright, citrusy gremolata ($13), rotating bar snacks like eggs stained wine purple from a pickling bath with grapes ($5), and a take on Italian bagna càuda ($12) – normally an anchovy-butter dip – that combines an umami-heavy hollandaise with fingerling potatoes and a few edible red flower petals for visual impact.
For bigger appetites, go for the addictive chicken carbonara ($18) that makes ample use of all parts of the bird (schmaltz, smoked meat, crisps of chicken skin standing in for bacon, and a free-range egg). That, plus the inventive cauliflower done three ways ($12) – hot and battered, raw, or puréed into a great garlicky hummus – should keep the locals coming back for more.
No more burritos at Lee’s
Lee’s Palace and its adjoining Big
Fat Burrito (529 Bloor West) have enjoyed a symbiotic relationship for many years – what’s better before or after a show (or, if you make use of the order window inside the venue, during a show) than a honkin’ burrito? But it looks like that will be coming to an end this year: BFB is up for lease, and a real estate posting states that the landlords are “willing to work with [a] startup business with [a] strong concept and desire to succeed.” Additional posts suggest the shop will vacate by December 31. If it doesn’t find a new home, the Kensington Market location will be the only remaining Big Fat Burrito in Toronto.