IT’S YOUR SOU­VLAKI DAY

MOD­ERN GREEK CUI­SINE COMES TO 16TH & YONGE

Richmond Hill Post - - Front Page -

GO­ING FOR GREEK

When Alicja Fred­er­icks saw the op­por­tu­nity to open up a Greek spot in the 905, she jumped on it. Rich­mond Hill’s Mediter­ranean op­tions are slim to none, so ex­pand­ing her mod­ern Greek restau­rant, Krys­tos, fur­ther north was a bit of a no-brainer.

Restau­ra­teur Fred­er­icks, along with her hus­band Paul, co-owns the minia­ture chain in ad­di­tion to their more fine dining estab­lish­ment, Trap­pers, at Yonge and Lawrence.

“We’ve been in the food busi­ness for a long time,” notes Fred­er­icks, speak­ing of her knowl­edge of Greek cui­sine. “We wanted to serve the com­mu­nity and we live close by.”

The first-born Krys­tos, lo­cated on Duf­ferin Street, pro­vides the menu blue­print for the younger sib­ling. Both spa­ces favour the sou­vlaki and mous­saka, touted as the spe­cial­ties. The Men­non­ite chicken sou­vlaki ($15) is done on the char­coal grill, much like the An­gus beef rib-eye ($25). Mean­while, the mous­saka is a Greek staff mem­ber’s fam­ily recipe and lay­ers egg­plant, ground beef and pota­toes with home­made béchamel ($15).

For those try­ing to cut back on their meat in­take, a veg ver­sion sees the pota­toes and egg­plant joined by zucchini and mush­rooms for an equally hearty take ($15). Desser­t­wise, the house baklava is the most au­then­tic pick ($6).

Krys­tos, 9218 Yonge St., Rich­mond Hill, 905-771-9800

PETER PAN SYN­DROME

Through its 37-year run, the iconic Peter Pan Bistro on Queen West has wit­nessed many of the twists and turns the city’s culi­nary jour­ney has taken. It reached din­ers with an ap­proach­able menu rooted in Ital­ian and Mediter­ranean cooking, and the kitchen was a step­ping stone for a list of no­table cooks.

Susur Lee is the most il­lus­tri­ous alum­nus of the orig­i­nal Peter Pan, open­ing Lo­tus, his first restau­rant, shortly af­ter leav­ing in 1987.

Last spring, long-time owner Mary Jackman an­nounced she was ready to re­tire. Quite quickly, she found the right match with fa­therand-son duo Marty and Noah Goldberg. Noah’s girl­friend, Jes­sica Ing­w­ersen, has also joined the team as a part­ner and leads the re­design.

The trio pur­chased the build­ing with the in­ten­tion of a ma­jor ren­o­va­tion. “We wanted to re­spect the tra­di­tion and his­tory that this restau­rant had in the city,” Noah says, point­ing to the orig­i­nal neon restau­rant sign, which still stands.

In­side, the cosy booths — an­other sig­na­ture — re­main, al­beit slightly tweaked. Fresh ad­di­tions in­clude a se­ries of ta­pes­try pieces on the walls boasting heads of var­i­ous fauna.

“It’s very Canadian,” Noah says. “It’s a cheeky way for me to have taxi­dermy in the restau­rant.”

Menu-wise, the old Peter Pan served up part-Mediter­ranean, partI­tal­ian plates and with a few Asian in­flu­ences. Noah is shift­ing away from this, in­stead fo­cus­ing on the in­gre­di­ents. He will pur­chase whole an­i­mals from On­tario farms, when­ever pos­si­ble, and break the an­i­mals down in the base­ment butch­ery room.

“It’s a tra­di­tional menu fea­tur­ing starters, mains, desserts,” says Noah. We’ll have a cheese pro­gram here with a cart that we roll around for ta­ble­side ser­vice. It’s more about that old school dining and this no­tion that can be this ro­man­tic, choreograp­hed show.” Trendy snack plates be gone.

The launch menu in­cludes a roulade of salmon cooked sous vide with dill and served with a med­ley of pick­led veg­eta­bles, pumper­nickel bli­nis, crème fraîche and pick­led el­der­ber­ries. An­other dish plays homage to Peter Pan’s popular pasta dish: brined cow tongue braised and served with fet­tuc­cine, oven-roasted toma­toes, crispy shal­lots and parm.

Peter Pan Bistro, 373 Queen St. W., 416-792-3838

GET YOUR JUNK ON

Whether or not we care to ad­mit it, junk food is un­de­ni­ably de­li­cious. Fat, sugar and car­bo­hy­drates are key in­gre­di­ents in nearly ev­ery ed­i­ble in­dul­gence, and the next Dou­ble Down is only an imag­i­na­tive deep­fryer ses­sion away. Vince Farago and Brian McKil­li­gan, two vets of the restau­rant and bar scene, based Junked Food Co. on the ma­nia for so­cial me­dia’s favourite friend: food porn.

“We thought to our­selves, why is there no full-time CNE in Toronto,” says McKil­li­gan. “We wanted to do a menu that would be play­ful and new. This was the per­fect way to push the bound­aries.”

Dori­tos Smash Bags are sure to be­come a hot ticket item — bags of Dori­tos burst­ing with taco-style toppings ($6 to $8) — and Chill-E Tots are the Junked ver­sion of a Coney Is­land pou­tine, with dark choco­late chicken chili and sour cream loaded onto tater tots ($8). On the sweeter side, they’ve got hot Oreo-in­fused waf­fles and the C Cup. The lat­ter is a cup filled with lay­ers of ic­ing and cake topped with candy that comes in sev­eral flavour com­bos ($6). Sim­ply put, Junked is food mashups gone wild, and you just might love it, even if your di­eti­cian doesn’t.

Junked Food Co., 1256 Dun­das St. W., 647-343-5326

SCUT­TLE­BUTT

Although famed Moe Pancer’s Deli closed in Fe­bru­ary, fans weren’t giv­ing up that eas­ily. “Af­ter get­ting nu­mer­ous voice mails and mes­sages, we felt we needed to re­open this place,” notes Lorne Pancer, grand­kid to the orig­i­nal Moe. He struck a deal with the land­lord of the North York spot. Now Lorne, along with brother Michael and nephew Ju­lian, are fresh­en­ing the space up and re­open­ing, with Ju­lian step­ping in as head chef. “It’s still very much a fam­ily-owned and op­er­ated restau­rant,” says Lorne.

There is a new Me Va Me lo­ca­tion open­ing at 169 En­ter­prise Blvd. in Markham. Its gen­er­ous falafel laffa wraps are bound to keep the lunch crowd happy.

Be­fore Toron­to­ni­ans lined up for tacos, it was the chicken karaage and

udon carbonara at Guu that had us wait­ing for hours. The hy­per-popular chain of iza­kayas plans to open in North York’s Hull­mark Cen­tre by the end of April. Guu North York will have 80 seats in­side and an ad­di­tional 70 on a pa­tio, mak­ing it the big­gest T.O. lo­ca­tion.

Hawker Bar, Oss­ing­ton’s popular snack shop, re­cently ex­panded with a sec­ond floor dining room and new menu items. When the eatery first opened, the team fo­cused pri­mar­ily on Malay and Sin­ga­porean street food, but the kitchen has ex­panded to in­clude some Thai prepa­ra­tions and Chi­nese in­flu­ences.

The Chase Hos­pi­tal­ity Group is ex­pand­ing, again, with Kasa Moto, a large-scale Ja­panese restau­rant they plan to open in Yorkville.

Speak­ing of over­sized Ja­panese restau­rants, Iron Chef Mo­ri­moto is re­port­edly open­ing a restau­rant in Brad Lamb’s Theatre Park condo devel­op­ment on King West.

Nadège’s jewel-like Parisian treats are now avail­able in the PATH thanks to a new bou­tique. Glass cases dis­play an ar­ray of mac­arons, flavoured crois­sants, brioche buns and pe­tit choux for those in need of an af­ter­noon pick-me-up.

More sug­ary con­fec­tions are to be found at Roselle Desserts, 362 King St. E., Cork­town. Look out for the ba­nana cream pie eclair and a ro­tat­ing se­lec­tion of crepes.

Levetto, a new group of ca­sual Ital­ian restau­rants, has opened a sec­ond lo­ca­tion at 940 Col­lege St. Piz­zas and, yes, pas­tas are the name of the game. Sadly, Queen West main­stay the

Swan is closing shop af­ter an amaz­ing 17 years. The Trinity Bell­woods brunch crowd is sure to miss the cosy spot. Fol­low­ing a solid six-year run, Le

Pe­tit Cas­tor, which opened dur­ing the eco­nomic doom and gloom of 2008–09, has shut­tered its doors.

From top: Wa­ter­melon salad from Peo­ples Eatery; grilled ro­maine hearts at Farmer’s Daugh­ter Eatery From top: Peter Pan’s salmon roulade dish; in­dul­gent C cups at Junked; and Krys­tos’s mous­saka with home­made béchamel

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