metro mama

Saturday, February 24, 2007

A Perfect Date

My extraordinary in-laws were here for a couple of days. Cakes’ Grandma arrived on the train Thursday, with her backpack. She walked from Union Station to St. Lawrence Market to buy some nice cheeses for us, then hopped on the streetcar to our place. She took Cakes for the entire day yesterday allowing us to catch up on errands (Ikea, Home Depot, Loblaws) and have a blissfully uninterrupted nap. Grandpa joined us yesterday afternoon and they sent McHotty and I out for a nice dinner on them. Pretty facking sweet.

We went to the new-ish addition to the Danforth, the Globe Bistro. The place is gorgeous – vaulted ceilings, extravagant glass chandeliers, massive art on the walls. It’s sleek and showy. The wine list is huge with some good reasonably priced options. We had a Porta 2005 Chilean Merlot that was very tasty. The food was excellent. We started with crab empanada and our main course was the Farmer’s Plate (the daily chef’s special, fresh from a local farm), which was lamb with an amazing sauce of salsify, accompanied by pickled salsify and fingerling potatoes.

The service was smooth and polished, but not stuffy. When McHotty went to the washroom, leaving his napkin in a bundle on the table, our server stopped, shook it out with a flourish and folded it neatly. I couldn’t help but giggle at this (I’m goofy that way) and he laughed right back. When we tasted the wine, we asked him how often people sent it back. He said that more than once he’s had people who thought the purpose of the exercise was to see if they liked the wine, and they responded to the taste with “sorry, I don’t really like this one”. Isn’t that funny!

Though the servers were not pretentious, some of our fellow diners seemed so. The man to our right brought his own wine. When the server went to take the empty bottle away, he curtly stopped him (McHotty thinks he wanted to return it and get his ten cents*). At first I thought the women on our left would be fodder for making fun because of their effusive compliments to the owners of the restaurant (who were making the rounds the entire time we were there). However, after dinner, they must have noticed me “surreptitiously” checking out their desserts. One of them asked for a second spoon, which she used to offer me a taste of her crème brûlée (which I of course accepted). The two of us, a rather tipsy pair by then, enjoyed a little conversation. As Jane Austen tells us most eloquently, first impressions can be deceiving, can’t they?

After dinner we went to our favourite local spot for a nightcap, Barrio. A perfect end to a perfect evening.

What is your idea of a perfect date?

For the Torontonians, which restaurant are you most dying to try?

* Ontario has recently introduced a program to return empty wine bottles for a refund. We can clean out our garage to put Cakes through college.



Blogger Lisa b said...

I would have to say this sounds like a perfect date to me, a perfect weekend in fact. Your in-laws rock.
I am waiting to feel better to check out the new Jamie Kennedy at the Gardner Museum. JK Rom was only open for lunch but I found it lovely without being pretentious - as Globe sounds.
I'm going to check back to see what restaurants others recommend.

8:01 PM  
Blogger Ms. Porter said...

Ohhhh, like lisa b I will be checking back too.
You really do have excellent inlaws and they are also lucky that you recognize that (but then again how could you not?).
I hope it was "tuesday" at your house to end a perfect evening.

8:15 PM  
Blogger nomotherearth said...

We've tried most of the major restaurants, but what I'm curious about is The Rosebud. One of our faves is Mistura, and a chef from there opened the same kind of place, but supposedly at a lower price point and smaller venue (The Rosebud). I've heard great things about it.

11:47 PM  
Blogger jen said...


i love your love. it inspires me. i know that wasn't the point of your post, but it's how it made me feel.

12:08 PM  
Blogger crazymumma said...

She is a wonderful woman that MIL of yours...

Perfect date? Art gallery. Drinks and Sushi somewhere high up in the city. A good walk to empty the stomach a bit. A hotel with some champagne and some nasty sex, followed by room service cheese fondue and all of the top movies (NOT Porn you bad girl).
Sleeping in, a good workout at the hotel gym, a greasy brunch, some shopping in China Town and Kensington Market. Chinese food, then home to find my house clean, children bathed and ready for bed.

I love my fantasy life.

As to your comment over my way? Let me know when your birthday is and I PROMISE I will make you one.

6:54 PM  
Blogger Mamalooper said...

Love Jamie Kennedy at the Gardiner. Meh on Rosebud. It was good but not as good as I thought it would be. Strange mix of patrons too. Loved Czehoski. Bymark if you want a "masters of the universe" ambience. Pangea is great too - always have had a good meal and the peoplewatching is fun.

7:17 PM  
Blogger crazymumma said...

I will never remember that far in advance you will have to give me aheads up next year!

7:44 PM  
Blogger Bloor West Mama said...

OMG...I had no idea about the empty wine bottle return policy. Isa will probably be able to go to an American University once she is old enough.hehehe

Sounds like you and your McHotty had a wonderful time. I love going out to dinner with the husband but we have not been able to as much lately as we are trying to reduce our variable expenses. Instead we make really good dinners at home and have a night in. Love it.

8:45 AM  
Blogger kittenpie said...

Ooh! Must find time and babysitter and money to try this one!

12:16 PM  
Blogger petite gourmand said...

I think that is in the old Cafe Brussels location, and I've wanted to check it out for ages.
Now I will for sure (and Barrio-still haven't been)
I still haven't tried Mark Thuet but would like to soon.
sounds like you two have some really great date nights.

11:11 PM  

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