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Go to Barrio's

Just had a fantastic meal at Barrio's tonight. Had the prix fixe as part of Leslielicious. Started with a divine mushroom and spinach crepe with mornay sauce, followed by trout almondine served with fingerling potatoes and a side of green and yellow beans. Absolutely amazing! My husband took the other Leslielicious combination: squash and roasted sweet potatoes with frisee and goat cheese dressing followed by the pork tenderloin on a bed of egg noodles with peas, leeks, and a dollop of fig coriander mustard. Unforgettable.

As if we did not have enough to eat, we were also treated to bread and dips (on the house) -- chickpea coriander paste and a black bean paste -- between courses.

By the time dessert came around (an incredible fruit tart -- more like a danish -- with a creme concoction on the side), we had to get it to go.

Overall: yummy flavours, generous portions, wonderful service and presentation. With beer and a nice bottle of wine, the bill for four people came to $200 with tax and tip. Worth every penny!

My only regret was that I was at Pop Bistro the night before. Pop's merely adequate food and nickle-and-dime-you-to-death approach ($9 for soup, $12 for a glass of wine, $14 for a bottle of San Pellegrino), was, in contrast, sadly pedestrian. It was unfortunate that I had the meals one night after the other: it merely heightened my regret that I bothered with Pop. I should have skipped right over that meal and spent my money at Barrio's.

Leslielicious or not, you must go to Barrio's Lounge. Queen Street East near Logan.

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  1. Please say this is a typo.
    "$14 for a bottle of San Pellegrino"

    1. Uh uh. That's what it is. $14. I know. I know. My fault for ordering it in the first place.

      3 Replies
      1. re: courgette

        Outraged, I just called them.

        But, they say that they charge $6 for a bottle of San Pellegrino.

        1. re: Fwagra

          There might be two sizes... The larger bottle is $14. I have the bill.

          1. re: courgette

            I've only seen 2 sizes of San Pellegrino. The really small bottle (perhaps around 250ml) and the large bottle which is 750 ml. Do they make another size? Not that it should matter, even at $6 it seems really steep. You can buy a case of 12 x 750ml at Costco for about $15. Enough said.

      2. Thanks for the warning about Pop Bistro! I live in the area, and have been looking forward to trying it. It's off my list now!

        1 Reply
        1. re: DRD

          Same, I live around the corner from Pop Bistro and have been thinking about checking them out... will probably think twice unless there are any other (more positive) reviews.

        2. My point is not necessarily to discourage people from trying Pop, only that Pop's pricing is a bit out of whack for the quality.

          I am happy to have new restaurants on the east side with nice decor and linen on the tables! They gentrify the place and adds a vibrancy to the neighbourhood. Please do try it and compare it with other restaurants and prove me wrong.

          1. Just went to Barrio for breakfast this morning. I was delighted with the prices and the quality of the food. I was surprised to see that my friend and I were the only ones in there. The food is so good.

            I had the farmer's sausage with home made spatzle. Yummy. Friend had the omlette with brie with a salad (just to make it a little virtuous).

            Please go and spend your weekend brunch dollars here.

            5 Replies
            1. re: Zengarden

              Don't tell too many people. we like not queing for great food!

              1. re: Zengarden

                I tried to go there for their terrific, non-crowded brunch on the long weekend, but Barrio was mysteriously closed with no explanation.

                1. re: Food Tourist

                  It wasn't closed when I went this weekend. Try again?

                  I would go here a thousand times before I would go to Bonjour Brioche which seems to be a destination brunch spot for a lot of folks.

                  But I digress. Go to Barrio.

                  1. re: Zengarden

                    I know, I know. Brunch at Barrio is virtually perfect. I really don't understand why they are mostly empty. It's so much better than Joy Bistro, Ed Levesque's, and even Smalltalk across town. I'll just make sure to call ahead next time.

                    1. re: Food Tourist

                      I think there's just too many brunch options down there and not that much pedestrian traffic or higher-end shopping to make the area a destination. I know the neighbourhood finally seems to be on an upswing but I wonder if it can sustain all these restaurants...