Portland Variety chef Matty Cowan opened his kitchen for us to taste his new menu creations and try some new, in some cases smoking, cocktail creations. The menu offers a wide variety of new bites with an infusion of nuts and sweetness. The sweetness was a little much for my palate but I also drink my coffee black and am not a fan of Prosecco – so take that into consideration moving forward.

The tasting offered a variety of appetizers, salads, entrees and the specialty dessert. Plenty to tempt your appetite and fill your stomach just by watching the plates go by. As a tapas/family style restaurant, whether your there with friends or on a date, you’ll always have enough options to taste and share. Make sure you go with someone who likes to share, it makes it a lot more fun.

The tasting

The Bits & Bites are meant to hold you over until your salad or appetizer arrives. Select 1 for the table to share as your drinks arrive. Favourite here includes Iberico Chorizo Croquettas and Cassava Fries. Try the new drink selections like the Rosemary Lime Negroni.

Rosemary Lime Negroni

Rosemary Lime Negroni

Stand out Salad was the Black Kale (Chevre noir, pickled grapes, hazelnuts, burnt honey dressing), the Roasted Heirloom Roots had a sweeter taste to it. And if you’re not a fan of salad, the Cold dish of choice would be the Nikkei Ceviche.

Nikkei Ceviche with Aji de Maracuya, Persimmons & Taro Chips

Nikkei Ceviche with Aji de Maracuya, Persimmons & Taro Chips

For your mains, the Hot, you really can’t go wrong with the Piri Piri Fried Hen or Grilled Octopus. Here again the Sticky Lamb Ribs and Braised Shortribs were on the sweet side.

Piri Piri fried hen and hot honey glaze

Piri Piri fried hen and hot honey glaze

Grilled octopus with chorizo jam

Grilled octopus with chorizo jam

Finish off with Dessert and the Beignets (which I do enjoy sweet). These bite sized vanilla custard doughnuts are a favourite for all.

About The Author

René Samulewitsch
CEO: Chief Entertainment Officer
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René Samulewitsch @VIPRene is a globetrotter with a hunger for adventure, but at heart, he will always be an urban tourist with big love for Toronto. When not busy with his day job as a PR strategist, he spends his time exploring the city’s culture and entertainment venues. Rene has a passion for sharing experiences, and truly believes in the power of word of mouth. Favourite place in Toronto: Kensington Market in the Summer as there’s always something new to discover. Queen Street for the urban vibe and King Street to let loose and party.

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