Tuesday, December 31, 2013
Sunday, December 29, 2013
Best Out of Town "Local" Restaurant 2013
Best Out of Town New Restaurant 2013
Guilty Pleasures at Stratford’s Monforte on Wellington Redux
Osteria (oh-stay-REE-ah) is the Italian term for the most casual and down-to-earth amongst restaurant classifications. Traditionally an osteria provided lodging and served simple and inexpensive food and wine. In Italy, travelling through the regions of Emilia Romagna, Molise, Umbria and Abruzzi is where I first became enamored with this style of restaurant. The osterias I gravitated towards in Italy were mainly located in the countryside and were informal gathering places with certain precepts that almost always held true: short menus, local, seasonal house-made specialties, and sometimes but not always, meals are served at communal tables.
Crafted by architectural students from the University of Toronto, the furniture is made from reclaimed wood and donated palletes creating a hand-crafted décor from mostly recycled and repurposed materials. The brightly coloured upholstered benches add a touch of pizzazz and accentuate the whitewashed walls. The ceilings are high with interesting spider-like fixtures with bare bulbs and there is a large picture window facing the street. The kitchen is open to the dining room and there is a passageway beside the kitchen that leads to a 35-seat courtyard with umbrellaed tables for al fresco dining.
The restaurant is BYOW with a corkage fee of $15.00, or if you order a glass of VQA wine they might bring you a full bottle and charge you for what you drink. The wine selection is limited and there is a good selection of craft beers. They retain a strong local focus on drinks to keep them consistent with the kitchen’s offerings. We also loved the “Fizzy Water” which was 50 cents a glass.
Bryan Lavery's Picks
LONDON ONTARIO’S TOP RESTAURANTS in 2013
For those of you who are reading this blog for the first time, the objective has been to offer a professional insider’s perspective and to contribute to the enthusiasm and discussion about the local and regional culinary culture at large, and about the restaurant community in particular.
London Ontario’s Top Restaurants in 2013
Monday, December 23, 2013
The Grape Growers of Ontario is the official organization that represents 500 grape growers in the province, including the three designated viticulture areas: Niagara Peninsula, Prince Edward County, the North shore of Lake Erie or Pelee Island.