Neighbourhood: West Broadway
Address: 164 Langside St
Hidden behind the unassuming facade of a neighbourhood corner store and tucked away from the hustle and bustle of Broadway on a street lined with old two-storey homes and brick apartments, Langside Grocery beckons with its oh so chic cocktails and alluring dishes.
Libations are poured from behind an aged wood-paneled bar. Dimmed round pendants hang from an ornate bronze ceiling, and weathered wallpaper and tarnished mirror bedeck the walls. One can almost forget it’s the 21st century, if not for the music pouring from overhead speakers and diners snapping pics of classy glasses and dishes set before them.
Chef Zackary Zaharia’s new menu showcases select ingredients in carefully pared-down mélanges. Chilled raw pink salmon tantalizes, its delicate flavour kissed by spicy harissa and herby fennel paste. Salted almond slivers add unexpected playfulness.
Artichokes and asparagus, rarely seen as stars on a menu, are presented with sophistication atop antique-style china. Juicy roasted artichokes nest on a bed of bright peas and shoots, dressed lightly in tangy buttermilk and topped with pickled shallots for a sweet-fermented bite.
Aromatic dill vinaigrette infuses zest into a mix of crisp yet tender asparagus spears and crunchy sourdough croutons. Bites of asparagus and lightly cooked tomatoes also brighten a generous pile of piping hot house-made gnocchi, dusted with shaved Parmesan.
Here, crème brûlée is perfection, its glassy coating cracking away to reveal velvety custard. A spoonful of sweet orange compote laid on top adds citrusy hits to a salted caramel finish.
With a mere 30 seats, this modern-day speakeasy paints an intimate portrait of the good ol’ days.
Langside Grocery is open Fri 4 pm-close, and Sat-Thu 5 pm-close.