Monday, November 11, 2013

Urban Eats: Michael's On Simcoe

Photo credit: Becca Lamire
As if there wasn’t enough happening on King West to keep us busy – there’s yet another amazing restaurant that you’ve just gotta try. 

Well, if you can get reservations, that is. A year after their opening, Michael’s On Simcoe has become a hot spot for the theatre crowd and the Toronto International Film Festival. This year at TIFF, the restaurant hosted celebrity events and even scored a mention in People Magazine.
Nestled between the financial and entertainment districts, Michael’s On Simcoe reinvented the traditional steakhouse by creating a softer, more elegant space. It’s a modern Italian Steakhouse that integrates the best of contemporary cuisine with prime steak, fresh seafood, and authentic homemade pastas.
“Michael’s is about providing an upscale dining experience,” says owner, Michael Dabic. “The restaurant creates an ambiance of class similar to restaurants in New York and Miami.”

Last week, I attended a media dinner for Michael’s on Simcoe. Here were some of my top picks for eats:
The beef Carpaccio with parmesan, arugula and truffle dressing (above) tastes pretty moist for 20 days old. It’s so tender that the meat almost melts in my mouth. At Michael’s, all the steaks are premium quality, ranging from $36 to $130, and are aged in their onsite aging chamber (what the what?!). 
Hands down, the squash risotto (above) is our table’s top pick: a sweet and creamy rice mixed with chunks of squash, and accented with chestnut, onions, sage, and vincotto (cooked wine). Although served secondi, I’m left craving this dish as a main course.

 I’m eating a flower! I bite into a soft, fried squash blossom (above), filled with ricotta and bufala cheese and set atop a tangy sundried tomato salsa. It’s a bit too salty for me, but I’m really loving the concept.
I quickly strategize a plan of attack for this next dish. Which delicacy should I eat first? I bite into the lobster meat drizzled in white wine sauce (above), its sea saltiness lolling on my tongue. Next, I slice into the fresh ravioli (above), stuffed with minced lobster and herbs. The homemade pasta is tender and the dash of salsa on top gives it a little extra kick. A fleeting but satisfying moment of my life.
Last but not least: a warm chocolate brownie with a scoop of vanilla ice cream (above). After a series of savoury dishes, this dessert cleanses my palate and is most welcome as the finale. 

Michael’s On Simcoe has a high price tag attached to their menu, but satisfaction is guaranteed with these sumptuous dishes. A good restaurant pick if you’re heading to the theatre afterwards. 

Michael's On Simcoe 
100 Simcoe Street
Toronto, ON
416. 260. 5100 
Dinner from 5pm (Monday to Saturday)
Lunch from 11:30am (Monday to Friday) 
Valet parking available 

-- Lisa Jackson is a freelance writer and blogs at Eat Drink Travel Magazine. Find her online @eatdrinktravels

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