Is it because 2016 is the International Year of Pulses (so says the UN). Is it Ottolenghi? Has the London-based restaurateur, cookbook author and Guardian contributor inspired this high-end restauraurant in Toronto?
Whatever the reason, it’s very hard to get a reservation at Byblos, the two-floor, elegant, Eastern Mediterranean restaurant in Toronto’s financial district. I went as part of a birthday party and ordered one of the group menus. And although I usually hate group menus, this one was stellar. Pricey, but justified.
We started with the Maltese spiced olives (Fel Fel). Actually, no. We started with a cocktail:
Look at that char…
For dessert, I got a special gluten-free chocolate mousse cake with labneh (it’s usually served with broken baklava but they left that off for me). The pomegranate seeds and greens garnish were nice touches.
All in all, Byblos lived up to the expectation. It’s not cheap, but the prices are justified for the quality, the creativity and the execution of its delicious dishes. When someone can do green beans that well, they deserve the applause.
11 Duncan Street, Toronto
Hours: Mon-Sun 5pm-close
Cost: $60-$90 per person plus tax and tip