Annabelle Pasta Bar


Toronto Life - - Culture -

ITAL­IAN Both lev­els of this cozy neigh­bour­hood pasta spot of­fer in­ti­macy, but on two very dif­fer­ent wave­lengths. An ex­tended butcher block counter dom­i­nates the main floor. On one side, pa­trons sit in diner-style seat­ing over­look­ing the gal­ley kitchen and bar area op­po­site. Up a nar­row stair­case— shared by cus­tomers and har­ried servers alike—the con­vivi­al­ity of a tra­di­tional pub merges with the co­zi­ness of your grand­par­ents’ dining room. Smaller bites steal the show: po’ di pane, a gor­geously puffed and blis­tered disc of dough flavoured with pecorino, roasted gar­lic, but­ter and olive oil, is good ol’ cheesy bread but with a glo­ri­ous patina of so­phis­ti­ca­tion. Am­bi­tiously con­ceived but in­con­sis­tently ex­e­cuted house­made pas­tas in­clude chewy casarecce in a sweet and acidic tomato sauce with quar­tered beets and crum­bled goat cheese, and un­for­tu­nately dense buck­wheat orec­chi­ette in a dry goat ragoût. There’s no dessert to be had, but a se­lec­tion of af­ford­able Ital­ian wines and cock­tails com­ple­ments the savoury stuff beau­ti­fully. 909 Daven­port Rd., no phone. $$V

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