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Looking for Grade A Risotto

I've had risottos in town. But I'm not sure I've ever had the true version of the dish, as the places I had them at were "gastropubs". So I'm looking for the gold standard in Toronto, so I can understand what the real deal should look and taste like.

I would prefer the most basic version around, because too many additions make it, well, risotto and whatever. I think the pure dish is just a bit of butter and parmesan mixed in at the end? That would be my ideal taste test.

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  1. Believe it or not, Pangaea has one of the best mushroom risotto's I've ever had. It is about $30 as a main but you can get it at as a smaller plate for about $20 I do believe.

    7 Replies
    1. re: JennaBean

      Don't believe it. Last time I was at Pangea, it was a disaster of epic proportions. #restaurantfail

      1. re: justpete

        Agree. Pangea is to be avoided.

        1. re: justpete

          i will have to go for lunch this week as i haven't been since winter.

          1. re: JennaBean

            Went last night. Had the small size, just as good as the last time. Maybe a bit smaller than I remember it.

            1. re: JennaBean

              Astonishing. Maybe I'll have to re-visit. This restaurant was run like a swiss-chalet last time I was there.

              1. re: justpete

                it was only a 1/3 full and i tend to stick to the same items a salad and the risotto so I can't comment on much of anything else.

                1. re: JennaBean

                  I'm with Jenna on this. Ive had this Risotto as well and its awesome. Pretty much the best thing on their menu imo.

      2. It should look almost like a well made rice pudding (think wet, not like other rice dishes) and have the tender toothsome quality of same. It shouldn't taste like any one component, but rather the harmony of carnaroli, butter, onion, garlic, chicken stock, parmesan, and parsley. It's more a feeling than a taste I find. I also find adding just the right amount of parsley to be key to elevating the flavours of all ingredients.

        Where when out? I leave that to others.

        1. Best risotto I've had in TO was the meyer lemon risotto served as part of Lobsterlicious at Scaramouche 2 years ago.

          The beet risotto at Mistura is also supposed to be amazing, and is on my wishlist.

          For a plainer, top quality risotto, I'd head to a place such as Il Posto Nuovo. Risotto Milanese is the classic, fairly plain but still delicious risotto, made with butter, broth, saffron and parmigiano, iirc.

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          Mistura
          265 Davenport Rd, Toronto, ON M5R1J9, CA

          Scaramouche
          1 Benvenuto Place, Toronto, ON M4V 2L1, CA

          Il Posto
          148 Yorkville Ave, Toronto, ON M5R1C2, CA

          1 Reply
          1. re: prima

            the porcini risotto i had at One a couple of years ago was the best i've had in toronto. proper "goopy" consistency, al dente rice. just the right amount of parm to finish

          2. Via Allegro wild mushroom risotto is the best by far. Not as al dente as in Italty, but no place in Toronto serves it as crunchy as the Italians like it.

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            Via Allegro
            1750 The Queensway, Toronto, ON M9C5H5, CA

            1. Thanks for all the suggestions, I will dust off my tuxedo and try some of them out.

              1 Reply
              1. re: Pincus

                Splendido has great risotto as does Bymark. Not certain if they have them as a main, but great sides. Entoteca Sociale may have a risotto dish as well.

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                Splendido
                88 Harbord Street, Toronto, ON M5S 1G5, CA

                Bymark
                66 Wellington St. W, Toronto, ON M5K 1J3, CA