http://www.nuitsocial.com/ (647) 350-6848 $$$ dinner wed-mon
Social boards and social plates, this new Queen West spot inspires conversation and creative thinking while constructing your own charcuterie platter. The menu created by chef John Rosal is geared for couples, triples or family style dining and oh yes, I must mention the carefully chosen wine list of 20 bottles, all available by the glass. Now, let’s talk about the mostly white decor and the love for local artists that use the space to showcase their creativity, changing on a monthly basis to ensure everyone gets their time to shine. The stellar menu is the main focus here, however Friday and Saturday nights live music fills this west end space; DJ Dimitri spins on vinyl enticing locals like poetry – floor to ceiling windows illuminates “a feeling of great enthusiasm and eagerness”. Oh ya…
Cocktails are sublime. Mixologist Tess Cheung makes libations to die for. Blue Botanist tastes like the scent of wild blueberries in a fresh summer breeze. Marikoriko is made for rum lovers, rich with frothly pineapple, wine syrup finished with preserved hibiscus. It’s all about levels in Cheung’s Margarita: first gold tequila hits hard then fresh sour limes wrap around taste buds like a blanket putting out a fire – salt not included or needed. Charcuterie and cheese boards arrive next, most sourced and cured locally sitting alongside buttery green Cerignot olives from Italy, briny Kalamata olives from Greece and plump, vinegary Maddelena (Alfonzo) olives from Peru.
Buttery scallops melt-in-the-mouth, charred slightly is one of the hardest things to perfect for even the best of chefs. Octopus melts in the mouth like sweet caramel paired Visalia and San Manzanita tomato. Finally fried artichokes find the perfect home dipped into a tangy, salty Puttanesca sauce.