I have been meaning to get to Beast for a while now. Just never enough to time….. I had heard from a few friends in TO that the food was really good . This past weekend I finally got to try some items. Once again Angie Quaale from Well Seasoned accompanied me.
We stopped in for a glass of wine and a few appetizers before we headed out for a late dinner at Parts & Labour
The building is really charming and with lovely plastered walls, planked flooring and cozy seating.More like you are going to someones home for dinner than a restaurant. Its just a really nice place to eat and the chandeliers are gorgeous but not so pretentious you would feel uncomfortable coming in more casual clothing.
We decided on our wine and then moved on to selecting some appetizers to share –
Cassoulet duck confit, chorizo sausage, poached duck egg
The beautiful succulent pieces of duck, the to-die-for chorizo, beans that held their shape yet yielded to a bite… and a perfectly poached duck egg made this dish elegant, rustic and hearty all at once. The only criticism I could make was it was just a bit heavily seasoned with salt for our tastes… That note aside this is a dish you want to delve into- curling up beside a fireplace with it……. Like your favorite cardigan or sweater you want to just keep going back to it.
I love cured meats. I love the smoky overtones the different textures and tastes a good charcuterie platter should come with. I am spoiled so many of my friends on the BBQ circuit cure their own meats and have shared their bounty with us. Going to restaurants lately I have been very disappointed with some of the charcuterie I have had, until this arrived:
1.Rabbit and Carrot Terrine 2. Pate de Campagne 3. Mortadella 4. Duck Bresaola 5. Foie Gras “Pastrami” pickled veg, mustard & honeycomb -parker house rolls, absolutely everything was delicious. We could have spent all night with this gorgeous pig platter of food slowly savoring each item.
I would also like to note they make the parker house rolls and mini baguettes with red bran (I could eat a dozen of these they are soo yummy and the texture ROCKS) in house and they are just perfect accompaniments to this dish.
lamb ribs carolina bbq sauce & hushpuppies
So here is the hard part. I don’t like lamb in any form at all. I have had countless chefs and BBQ cooks and friends have me try their lamb in every which way possible. I still don’t like it. Until now.
Lamb ribs are something I have never had before. These were succulent and properly cooked. The outside crust was incredible. The sauce very lightly applied. I wish I had the rub recipe. The meats texture and flavor was incredible. Different than any other lamb I have ever had. The fatty layer underneath is simply indulgent very rich….. Delicious. ….I was shocked by how much I enjoyed them. The coleslaw was vinegary and crisp & did a great of balancing the fattiness of the ribs.
Last but not least the hushpuppies. I have such a fondness for hushpuppies. I am an absolute hush puppy lovin’ lady- These were little balls of pure happiness. I could eat them by the bucketload . The crunchy exterior is in beautiful contrast to the fluffy light interior. They were awesome.. Hushpuppies are a Southern thing that I hope catches on a lot more in Ontario.
I am really looking forward to another visit to Beast to have not just appetizers but an entire meal… The service was incredibly friendly warm and hospitable. Scott and Rachelle Vivian truly have something to be incredibly proud of with this restaurant.