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Globe bistro - finally tried it (sort of...the patio menu)

The missus and I wanted a nice patio dinner. I suggested that we finally try Globe Bistro's patio. Went online and saw the had a patio menu (priced lower than their dinner menu), some happy hour specials for food and a $5 happy hr cocktail. so hey, for a Wednesday night, why not?

the staff was very hospitable. we found a table at the patio and ordered some drinks. the $5 drink special was pretty much rum in fruit juice. not complaining whatsoever and the drink disappeared within 5 minutes.

their menu:

Canadian Oysters
“Wild & Mild”, Saskatoonberry mignonette, traditional garnish

3 each

Globe’s Poutine
Ewenity curds, apple cider jus, herbed Yukon gold frites

9
Crispy Globe Chicken Wings
Lightly dusted, wild leek sauce

10
Yarmouth Lobster Niçoise Salad
Yarmouth lobster, fingerlings, haricots verts, taggiasche olives,
quail’s egg, champagne tarragon vinaigrette

15
Cheese Board
Chef’s selection, crostini, accompaniments 14


Northern Woods Mushroom Empanada
Shallot confit, smoked pico de gallo, goat’s crème fraiche

10
Ontario Rib Eye Burger
Ewenity cheese curds, Niagara pancetta, house made pickles,
Yukon gold frites, house smoked ketchup

15
Haldimand Lamb Falafel
Pickled cucumber salad, wild leek raita

12
Pea Shoot & Granny Smith Apple Roll
Black sesame, Waupoos cider gastrique
9

a few of the menu items are $7 during happy hour. we ordered the lamb falafel, poutine and the burger (the first 2 were specials, FYI). we were asked how we liked the burger and i requested medium.

i've read lots of posters raving about the food and I would guess that a lot of posters would put Globe near the top of their Toronto resto list. but....
first, the poutine. gravy was weak and flavourless and really wet. cheese curds were excellent. no squeak, but incredibly tasty. the fries were cooked well. but truth be told, JK and Caplansky both do a poutine head and shoulders above Globe's. it lacked flavour. plain and simple.

the lamb was tasty at first bite...very well flavoured. but then...the salt hit me. and trust me when i say i love things salty. but this was excessive. 3 hours later and I'm still thirsty. the missus had 1 falafel and didn't want any more. and she likes lamb as well.

the burger was very good. you can taste the quality of meat and the lack of filler. it was cooked nicely and had a decent amount of juiciness. the cheese and the fresh tomato slices were nice toppings. in all, the burger was surprisingly good and is probably one of the better burgers I've had in Toronto.

i openly questioned on another thread if Globe was worth the hype and price. so tonight, i gave it a shot. and truth be told, I'm not going to be running back any time soon to try the dining room menu. 2 out of 3 misses on the patio menu for a "moderately priced" restaurant isn't a hit in my books.

am i the only one who's had this experience?

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  1. I agree. I was surprised and diasapointed by the patio menu and the quality of the food. I also wasn't impressed by the service, our waiter seemed put out to be serving us. I wonder if there is a significant difference in quality between the patio menu and the main menu and if so...why?

    1 Reply
    1. re: food_whiz

      I definitely second food_whiz's comment about the staff's attitude. There was a little arrogance and a hint of attitude at each table visit. If only the kitchen staff paid the same attention to detail in their patio menu as our server did with his persona ...

    2. Are these tapas sized plates? For instance how big is the burger?

      4 Replies
      1. re: aser

        It's a regular sized burger for one person. Some of the other plates are suitable for sharing. The portion sizes vary drastically between the different items, if you order the poutine or wings you will get a very generous portion, and if you order the mushroom empanada you will get 3 pieces roughly the size of a small Chinese style "pot sticker".

        About 2 months ago I ordered a burger and only that one time, it was incredibly salty.
        I've always enjoyed the poutine, and don't remember the gravy being very weak. We often order the lamb "falafel" and it's never been salty. Everything posted by atomeyes could be true, it just indicates there is some variation in the patio menu. We've always enjoyed the food in the main dining room. Last Friday I ate there and my wife and I really liked the Canada's Finest plate, which had fried brawn as the main item. Summary: don't write off the menu in the main dining room because there were a few mis-steps on the patio. I've never had a bad meal downstairs, and only had some over-salted food once.
        I also ate there twice during summerliscious and had a great meal each time.
        My wife and I always enjoy the winemaker's dinners and I suggest going to one of those, they are always very good.

        1. re: foodyDudey

          Dudey, are you suggesting that there's a separate kitchen, staff, and chef that services the patio than the dining room?

          1. re: Googs

            It all comes out of the same kitchen on the main floor, but I am starting to think that there must be different staff preparing most of the patio menu, as it's much simpler food.

        2. re: aser

          you won't hear me complaining about the portions. we ordered 3 dishes and were stuffed (2 of them had fries, so that's probably the reason). the burger and fries, for $15, is a good-sized burger to eat. unless you were starving, you probably wouldn't go home hungry after ordering the burger alone. i wolfed down my half of it in 3 minutes (i kid not). purty tasty.

        3. I'm in partial agreement here.

          I do agree that the patio menu is nothing to write home about, but I don't expect much of happy hour food special - I'm primarily there for some reasonably priced drinks on a nice patio. I do think it's a missed opportunity, much like the countless restaurants that keep botching their *licious opportunities.

          A few comments about the food experience, in particular:

          - I had the lamb a few weeks back and really enjoyed it from the first bite to the last (as did my cohorts in subsequent visits) and I'm a sparse salter at best. Maybe it was an off night?

          - My s/o and friend visited for summerlicious this year and raved about it endlessly, so I wouldn't give up hope yet.

          Perhaps one last ditch attempt for a dinner?

          1. I've only been once. It was a gorgeous sunny summer afternoon and we had one of those "in between wedding ceremony and reception" windows. So we headed up to the roof, sat on some high stools and enjoyed a glass of white wine, some cheese and charcuterie. It was perfect. Maybe it's best to go there for drinks and a light bite like that?

            5 Replies
            1. re: peppermint pate

              There's a lot more to Globe than wine, cheese and charcuterie. Haven't you read many of the good reviews which far outnumber the bad ones? It looks 3 posters in this thread are judging the restaurant by the patio menu. I'd suggest trying the regular menu before passing the final judgment. Globe has been open almost three years now and none of you has eaten in the main room yet, which is surprising. Have none of you read any of the positive reviews posted right here on CH? There are a few in this thread: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/582245

              1. re: foodyDudey

                Hi foodyDudey - the tone of my post was actually meant to be positive on my patio experience, not negative on the restaurant in general.

                I did go to the main restaurant for brunch one time (I think I posted about it on another thread) and while the room was lovely and the menu tempting, I found the actual food to be just okay. Having said that, it's still on my (long) list of spots to try for dinner.

                1. re: foodyDudey

                  My post did not judge the entire restaurant, I shared my patio experience. I get frustrated with lower quality food being served when specials are offered. It is the perfect opportunity for a restaurant to lure in new customers, by showcasing their talent. Perhaps that is not a concern for a restaurant such as Globe. The patio was great, the drinks and food mediocre--ON THE PATIO.

                  1. re: food_whiz

                    My response was mainly directed at atomeyes who didn't want to try the dining room menu, based on the patio menu. I do agree that the quality of the same items on the patio menu has varied over the summer. Originally it was very good, but a few items seem to have had glitch on occasion, and this shouldn't happen. I'm not defending the varied quality of the food on the patio, just saying that I've not encountered it in the dining room.

                    1. re: foodyDudey

                      I like the Globe. I haven't tried their patio menu so I can't comment on that. I have had dinner from their regular menu 3 times and the food was always good, but not flawless. I've noticed that in many of their dishes their seems to be an element that either is not prepared well or just doesn't make sense.

                      Service has varied from excellent, to efficient, if a little standoffish.

                      As I said, I like this place. I would like to see them sharpen up and become a little more consistent. It's still worth it to give the regular menu a try.

                      I think Joanne Kates recent review is spot on:

                      http://www.theglobeandmail.com/life/i...

              2. Didn't the chef who generated many of the positive reviews leave a few months back?

                2 Replies
                1. re: Dimbulb

                  I'm sure that Kevin McKenna is still the chef, he's been there almost a year and I saw him last week. (or else it was his twin brother)

                  1. re: Dimbulb

                    Its actually the current chef, Kevin McKenna, who has been generating positive reviews.

                  2. There is something that bothers me about this restaurant. All of the lobster dishes claim to be 'Yarmouth Lobster'. This may be splitting hairs, but Yarmouth's lobster season runs from November to early February... so they are not serving Yarmouth lobster.

                    I asked the owner who was front and present during Taste of the Danforth if they indeed used Yarmouth lobster, which he claimed was true. When I mentioned the season, he huffed, turned around and walked back into the restaurant.

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: Danforth_Foodie

                      Were you were asking him if they use Yarmouth Lobster all year long? On this page, http://www.stanleylobster.com/lobster... it says that the season ends May 31, not the beginning of Feb. Whatever lobsters they are, they aren't "100 mile diet" lobsters.

                      1. re: foodyDudey

                        The question I asked during Taste was whether they were serving 'Yarmouth' lobster, and he replied... only after 5pm. I mentioned that it was out of season, and that's when he turned his back on me. I suspect this is just a marketing ploy.

                        I did make a boo-boo with the dates of the season, though this was never mentioned in our brief conversation.

                        1. re: Danforth_Foodie

                          It's quite possible that they serve Yarmouth lobster that was caught in season and then stored in a tidal lobster pound.