CHARRED: A NICE SURPRISE
244 James St. N. 289-396-0662 www.charred.ca
The look: Red and black; brick and metal The feel: Trendy and friendly Wheelchair accessible: No Hours: Monday through Saturday 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Sunday, noon to 8 p.m. What you’ll pay: Matzah ball soup $8; large Caesar salad $14; house salad $10; half chicken with one side $15
piri piri mayonnaise and cilantro. The bun — from Ola, the bakery a few doors down — had a nice chew and tenderness to match the chicken. Again, the piri piri sauce on the side, when added, brought the flavours of the sandwich to life.
Our server was efficient and maintained a cordial, helpful demeanour, even though he was working in heat that was impossible to ignore. He was a little quick, however, to clear unfinished dishes.
He recommended we try pie for dessert, lemon meringue or coconut cream. I chose the latter. The filling, a bit more dense than fluffy, was full of creamy, coconut flavour. The crust was very good but had gone a little soft from the humidity in the kitchen.
When I went to pay the bill, I realized the person taking the payment was one of the people who cooked in the kitchen. Had she made the soup, I asked. She said yes, adding that everything but the bread was made in house.
Charred is a place where the staff care about the food and it showed, despite the heat.
Alana Hudson has cooked at restaurants including Vong, Le Bernardin, and Avalon.