Canoe is consistently ranked one of the best restaurants in Canada. It truly is incredible and never disappoints. For the past few years, Canoe and Winter/Summerlicious have been synonymous to me. Canoe is always a great bet for the semi-annual event put on by the City of Toronto since it reliably serves up interesting dishes made with local ingredients and wonderful wine pairings.
OK, really I just want an excuse to have Canoe’s gluten free jalapeno cornbread.
Canoe is so amazing when it comes to food intolerances. The staff has always served me well and the chefs are accommodating and modify dishes that aren’t gluten free so that I can have many options on the prix fixe menu. It’s one of those restaurants where you honestly feel as though having a severe food intolerance doesn’t prevent you from tasting the dishes as the chefs envisioned them.
So back to that homemade, gluten free jalapeno cornbread. I think that every time I go to Canoe I get more excited for the cornbread than the rest of the meal. Don’t get me wrong, everything I have eaten there has been amazing, it’s just this cornbread is oh so very good. Normally when you go to restaurants they offer gluten bread and if you’re gluten free, you simply skip the bread. But not here. You’re treated (read spoiled) to warmed up jalapeno cornbread. On this occasion, I did have to share it with my dinner companions so that everyone could understand what I had been bragging about.
For the $45 prix fixe dinner, I started off with the Cellar Vegetable Minestrone Soup (local) of pork sausage, Dryden wild rice, and spicy tomato. I also went for the wine tasting to get a glass of wine with each of the three courses. I highly recommend doing so.
As the entrée, I had the Wild Rubbed Venison Roast with smoked onion, mini potatoes, and berry mostarda. It was my first time having venison, and while the raw purple looking meat could be off-putting to some, I found it quite enjoyable and it was nice to try a new variety of meat. As always, the accompanying vegetables and sauces elevated the dish.
To cap off a delightful evening, for dessert I had the Osprey Bluffs Honey Panna Cotta (local) with vanilla poached apricot, pistachio cream, and orange scented tapioca. I love panna cotta and this was no exception, especially paired with the pistachio cream.
Once again, we had a lovely experience at Canoe. We lucked out this year and snagged a reservation for six so we went on a triple date with my siblings and their dates. Besides Ry and me, it was everyone’s first time at Canoe, and everyone had a wonderful evening. It was so nice for all of us to meet downtown Toronto for a fancy night out. The view of Toronto and the atmosphere alone are spectacular. Add in great flavour combinations, wonderful service, and flowing conversation and we truly all had an incredible night. I can’t wait for Summerlicious to be back again!