Nuit Social – Beaconsfield Village, TO

Nuit Social
Beaconsfield Village, Toronto
http://nuitsocial.com/

A friend of mine said that Nuit Social was one of her top meals of 2015, she told me to go and even gave me a $25 voucher for the place. This information in hand I made a booking for a Saturday night a couple of weeks ago.
Our booking was for 9:15, I walked in to check on where they were and was told they were slammed and the table would be available soon.

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I was dining with 5 friends and we decided that we would pop next door to grab a drink while we waited, we walked back at around 9:40 to find out our table was still not ready. We headed next door again for another drink when the owner came past at 10 to let us know our table was finally ready.

Now I understand 15 minutes, even 20, but 45 minutes after a booking time needs to be noted and improved on.

Now that I’ve got that out-of-the-way the rest of the review is unequivocally positive.

My friends left the ordering to me; we were told the dishes were all to share and we would need around 6-8 for 5 people which seemed like a decent number.

I went ahead and ordered a cheese plate and a charcuterie plate to start; now I wasn’t taking notes because well there was more than 3 people and I was the only food blogger so I can’t remember exactly what we had but I can tell you both their apple butter and whole mustard served with the charcuterie plate were phenomenal.

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The salad and arancini were first out, the arancini were perfectly rounded and filled with seasoned rice while containing melted cheese and saffron among other things. They were fried to a great crisp and served with a complementing sauce that made sure they were not on the table long.

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The salad was also great, the dressing with the different textures of each ingredient was great, I wasn’t sure if all the squash was cooked but it was the different types giving the different textures.

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They were two light starters that prepared us perfectly for the Ribs which came next.

The ribs were out next, sous vide, fried and lathered in sauce all served atop a smoked mac and cheese. We all wanted to make sure we got enough of this dish so we ordered two, a third may not have been a bad idea either.
They were amazing, the sauce full of flavour with so many ingredients as well as the make and cheese complementing the crispy tangy sauce so well. I’ve been back for these and they just keep getting better.

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The next dish out we had the duck confit; since I visited for this blog they’ve had a menu change on the duck, for us it was served as a DIY Vietnamese rice paper roll with all the usual suspects mixed together then eaten; now however it’s done with more of a classical feeling.

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Lastly the Octopus gnocchi, soft, citrusy, tart and tomatoey it was a great way to end the meal, a bowl of warmth that would be perfect for a hearty winter dish with a glass of red wine.

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I’ve since been back twice (Hiatus has its perks) and I will say their lamb is mind-blowing as well.

If you eat here you cannot go wrong, this is a written guarantee that you will thoroughly enjoy every bite you have at Nuit Social.

Nuit Social Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Marky’s BBQ Smokehouse – Bloor West Village, TO

Marky’s BBQ Smokehouse
Bloor West Village, Toronto
http://www.markysbbq.com/

Note: Marky’s BBQ Smokehouse has now closed 

About a month ago I was invited to the Marky’s BBQ media event. They are a smokehouse on Jane street slightly new to the area.

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I arrived slightly early and spent my time talking to the owner and head chef learning about their processes.
They obviously smoke all meats in-house from extremely high quality meats only sourced in Ontario, some from less than an hour away.

They use Super marbled brisket to ensure that they don’t need to throw a large quantity, it is brined 24 hrs then injected with beer and dry rubbed then smoked for roughly 24 hours as well.
The same can be said for both the ribs and pulled pork as well, they detailed the processes to me – I won’t be sharing their secrets – but I can tell you that they involve curing, smoking, rubbing, injecting, brining and all take at least 24 hours; most of the meats taking 48 hours of work before thy hit your table.

Their menu is designed to be a family style sharing menu to showcase all the items and let you be able to try them all.

Now before they served us platters of food I went and watched them prep everything, realistically I just wanted a picture of them basting the ribs as they finished them on the grill.

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Once I was back at the table the photo’s of everything ensued.

 

I started with the wings, dry smoked, they were soft and juicy with an interesting flavour; however, I don’t like dry smoked wings; I’m a fan of sauce and that really swayed my judgement, it wouldn’t be something I’d order again.

I then did a quick round of side to make get them out-of-the-way; the meats are the stars after all.

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I started with the beans, a fantastic side, creamy, sweet and a tiny bit spicy; while they didn’t add the burnt ends I would have liked them in there, that being said it was an absolute solid side without them. The mac n cheese was creamy and cheesy; two critical things that historically are lost by some other people, I would suggest that they need to toast some crumbled up biscuits for a topping to add texture and a bit more depth.

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The coleslaw was a solid side, a crisp and creamy mix with the right amount of seasoning it was a nice cool break from all the heavy meats while the fries were stellar, I love fries and I have to say these some of the best i’ve had in awhile, skin on double fried with a crisp outside and a fluffy inside.

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I tried the pulled pork first and was overwhelmed with how good it was, the flavour and texture were perfect. A tart, sweet and savoury flavouring all coupled with the flakey texture of a well smoked pork shoulder.

The first round of brisket was equally as good as the pork, thick pieces of soft and fatty brisket that was moist and luscious melt in the mouth while still having the rub being crisp on the outside.
We all finished this very quickly and asked for seconds, the second lot was heavily over salted and left you feeling empty and disappointed after having eaten the good stuff the first time round.

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Lastly what I thought would be the best for last were the ribs, the biggest let down of the night. While being smoked nicely with a great bite (not fall off the bone but not chewy, the mid-point of perfection in my opinion) they were extremely dry and salty. Salty to the point I had 1 and a half and called it quits. The rub had way too much salt and the sauce just couldn’t compensate for it, the sauce on its own was definitely a winner, a great bbq sauce if I’ve ever had one. Overall, they could have been better.

While the food left something to be desired I was impressed with the set out and night overall; I think with a fit more fine tuning Markys will have a hit on their hands

Marky's BBQ Smokehouse Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato