December 24, 2012


Canoe was never on my must go list of restaurants partly because I'm not a fan of the O&B restaurants and people have said it's as good as people say. In addition, their menu just did not attract me. Canoe offers Canadian and European cuisine. We were seated right next to the window with an awesome night view of Toronto and the CN Tower in Xmas colors. The lighting in the dining room was dim, thus it was hard to take nice photos and I didn't want to turn on my flash causing a big commotion around me. I do apologize of poor photos. 

the view from where we sat

The cocktail I got was the cocktail of the season? It was called christmopolitan" which is a play on Christmas and cosmopolitan. It was mainly cranberry juice and vodka. At first sip, it tasted more like juice than alcohol. As you got to the bottom, the vodka taste became more prominent.
chrismopolitan 15
To start off, complimentary bread with chickpea spread.

The B.C. Salmon was ordered by my friend and I did have a small portion to taste. The salmon was nicely seared or torched. The inside was not the pinkish color you would expect from a salmon. The color of the fish was still translucent but cooked. The taste of the salmon was light and did not overpower the natural salmon taste at all. I really enjoyed this dish.
Marple Torched B.C. Salmon 23
Nothing on the appetizers menu really caught my eye so I decided to try their take on the classic caesar salad.  Overall, the salad was okay. I found the dressing to be too citrus-y and too sour to the pallet. Did not understand the purpose of eel and lentils in this dish. I did like the soft boiled quail egg as it was perfectly cooked like soft boiled eggs in ramen, which I love. I do have to say, my favorite caesar salad is from Jacob and Co. Steakhouse. You have to try someday.
Two Tone Romaine 18
I really liked the soft broiled quail egg.
My other dear friend order the oysters to start. I had one and I have to say as a non oyster fanatic, it was very fresh and sweet. I did enjoy it more than I expected.
Oyster Boy`s Finest 19
For entree, I ordered a fish dish. I`m not a fan of meat and large pieces of meat (mostly steak), it just grosses me out. Thus, I usually order seafood, chicken or fish. This was an interesting dish because it included touches of molecular cuisine. The white foam you see in the picture is not nothing. It is actually cauliflower foam. At first, I was not able to identify the ingredient and had to ask our waiter afterwards. It was really interesting eating a solid food in another state. Call me dumb but is arctic char is same as salmon? The reason I'm asking is the fish in the below tasted just like salmon... The fish was cooked perfectly and it was served on top a bed of Ontario white rice and sweet corn. The plate was also assembled with sweet corn puree. Overall, the dish was good but not memorable aside from the cauliflower foam.
Sustainable Blue Arctic Char 38
Up next, my friend ordered the rib eye cooked to medium. I thought the meat was okay, not for my taste. The little potato triangles were a little too hard and dry.
49 Day Aged Ontario Rib Eye 49
I think this was the first time I had venison  The texture and taste of venison is very much like pork liver if you ever had that. The round dome that looks like a bun but it's actually a tourtiere. It's very much like a beef puff pastry in a ball shape.
Green Alder Rubbed Venison 48
Nothing really special about the butter tart.
Butter Tart 12
This didn't taste good either.
Soft Chocolate Financier 12
I decided to order the sticky toffee pudding since I wanted to compare this with the one I had at Starfish. I would have to say Starfish's sticky toffee pudding was much better. The sticky toffee date pudding was not chewy enough for my taste, it lacked texture. The white blob was almond foam and the orange ball is passion fruit sorbet with a wafer cracker on top. The whole dessert was immerse in a caramel sauce which made everything too sweet. The sourness from the passion fruit sorbet did not balance anything. Overall, this dessert was alright.
Sticky Toffee Date Pudding 12

the damage

The service was excellent. All dishes were explained by the server upon presentation and they were very knowledgeable about their menu. We had personal space with attentive service without being too intrusive and annoying. Food wise, I didn't find anything that was over and beyond. It was good. I would not go back again because I found the menu items to be limited and didn't offer enough variety. I believe a meat eater would enjoy Canoe more than I did.

Final Verdict: Par 

Happy Holidays to my dear readers~~~ 
Here's the season to be jolly, fa la la la la... la la la...

Canoe Restaurant & Bar on Urbanspoon


  1. I definitely hear great things about their service - they're rather well-known for it. Interesting that they let everyone know that they source their oysters from Oyster Boy.
    I always thought venison should taste like a very tender beef, but with maybe a bit more gaminess.
    Oo you're right, I just checked out wikipedia, and Arctic Char tastes somewhere between a salmon and a trout, and is closely related to salmon. As far as I know, nobody is really farming Arctic Char though, unlike the salmon farms ("Atlantic" salmon haha)
    I wonder if the beef was aged in-house, or if they purchased it aged from somewhere else. and also, if it was dry-aged or wet-aged.
    I've heard great things about the caesar (and the fries!) at Jacob & Co. I think maybe the eel was a play on the traditional anchovies that are in caesar salads.
    Happy Holidays (and festive eatings!) JL!

    1. I think it's bought, they dont seem to have to place to age the beef...
      Happy Holidays to you too Ken!! Indulge yourself in all the good food and the company of friends and family~~~