Harlem is Hot
I tried Harlem at 67 Richmond Street East (just east of Church) last weekend. It was really awesome...the produce is so fresh and I loved the Caribbean contemporary twist. My friends and I totally enjoyed the vegetarian sushi appetizer, crisps with a spicy dip, pasta with pine nuts and sundried tomatoes in coconut pesto, pork tenderloin with potato patties, salmon with sweet potato mash and greens, and spiced tofu steak with seasonal vegetables. The wine list was decent, the price was reasonable and the ambience is casual, fun, and funky. Chef and staff are formerly of Bonjour Brioche, so they know what they're doing. The only problem? It was pretty quiet for a Friday night. It's only been open for a few months, so I'm sure it's just taking some time for the word to get out. But I'd hate for it to be one of those little culinary gems that the city learns about too late! I believe it's open just for lunch on weekdays and for dinner Friday and Saturday nights....Bon appetit!
I'd been eyeing this place for a while, so after reading Lo D's positive comments my wife and I gave it a try. We enjoyed it, too.
We also went on a Friday and it was very quiet... in fact, we were the only people in the restaurant part, though there was a very busy and noisy event upstairs. The entrees were on a chalkboard, with no printed menu, so I assume they must change fairly often. Most were around $20 to $25. Portions were huge and the food was excellent. The coffee jerked pork was great, with just the right amount of heat and sweetness (for me, anyway). My wife had lamb in a mild Thai-style curry. Sides for both dishes were varied and fresh.
Even though the place was spookily empty, the staff was extremely friendly and accommodating. I agree that this place definitely deserves more of a crowd... maybe they're busier at lunch? Let's hope the word gets out.
Oh, I and found a website for Harlem, but be warned the menu we got differed quite a bit from what is posted on there: http://harlemrestaurant.com
Friends found this restaurant on your site and treated us to lunch there. It was fantastic! The corn muffins were super yummy and my tomato and fig lamb stew was also very tasty. We split a meatloaf sandwich among six of us as an experiment and I must admit - I thought it was delicious. I look forward to going back for dinner.
I was so impressed that I have joined the ChowHound site to leave this reply.
This place is absolutely a MUST VISIT!!! Went on New Years Eve and it was the second best restaurant meal I had all year (first being Au Pied du Cochon in Montreal). I was in Jamaica this year and even the fusion food I had there couldn't hold up to this place. The app was a wonderful seafood dish in a cream sauce (hold the fake crab though). We also had the jerk chicken quesadilla that was simply perfect (apparently the most ordered item). For dinner my girlfriend had the blackened catfish which was the best blackened fish she had ever had and I had the beef ribs which was soooo tender and of course fell right off the bone...hmmmmmm. I alos got a chance to meet the chef and he seemed to be a nice guy (the type of guy that you want to support). The ambiance was equally as pleasing. The place is terribly funky and cool. They have excellent art on the walls, warm colours and a table that seats at least 8 that is simply awesome...I am organizing a trip for my friends to join me there.
GET OUT AND SUPPORT THIS PLACE...IT IS AWESOME!
I know there's been a more recent thread on this but I can't find it... and I like the title of this one! We went for dinner on Saturday and it was all-around excellent. Had the baby back ribs, jambalaya, fried chicken, mac n cheese and collard greens. The only dish I didn't love was the collards, I had a hankering for the traditional southern style and these were quite different. Tasty though.
The desserts are billed as housemade. I had them put aside a slice of guava cheescake for me and it was amazing - fluffy rather than dense, which is fine by me, with wonderful guava flavour. My husband had the "harlem pie" which is baked in a ramekin and has chocolate cookie crust with a pecan, coconut and raisin filling - sounds like too much, right? Well it is very rich and we couldn't quite finish it, but it is delicious. Somewhat more like a brownie than pie.
I had to laugh at this title "Harlem is Hot": I went for dinner last summer and they do not have A/C... we were sweating our way through our fantabulous dinner! Yum yum yum, but definitely one of the hottest dining experiences I've had in T.O! We had fried chicken, ribs, corbread, collard greens. Mmmmmmm...
There is totally another thread... somewhere. I remember posting in it. Menu shots can be had in the flickr set: http://www.flickr.com/photos/jlunar/s... and a quickie write up in the blog. Found it to be pretty good, loved the candied yams and would return, though not super right away. The food can be pretty heavy, I find, but I do want to try their chicken!! Would get their mango and beet salad again too.
The guava cheesecake sounds tasty...!
http://www.foodpr0n.com/ - food. is. love.