Toronto is known for many things, the CN Tower, and their sports teams the Toronto Maple Leafs, the Raptors, and the Blue Jays. But did you know Toronto is also known for their extraordinary food scene? As diverse as the people who live in it, this city really knows how to set the stage for exemplary eats. And there’s no better example then Alo restaurant. Not only named #1 on Canada’s 100 Best Restaurants but also part of the World’s Best Restaurants top 100 – both for 2018
Location: Alo is located at 163 Spadina Avenue on the 3rd Floor. Found in the heart of Toronto, Ontario, this sexy beauty is situated at the top of an old heritage building. Close to the Entertainment District, China Town, and the ever cool Graffiti Alley.
Menu: Alo offers blind, multi-course tasting menus celebrating seasonal ingredients. (No. You will not be blindfolded. Blind simply means the chef will choose the courses for you.) Seating in the dining area takes you on a 10-course journey with exquisitely smaller plates at the perfect tasting size. If you’re lucky enough to grab a reservation at the Chef’s Table, the fabulousness keeps coming at you with 15-courses. However, both foodie escapades will absolutely blow you away. From amuse-bouche to dessert, each drool-worthy dish (like the Cuttlefish, Little Neck Clams, or Muscovy Duck) are presented with immaculate detail.
Thoughts: Once you walk in from the main doors you just may pause to wonder if you’re in the right place. Mysterious and intriguing, a hostess stands to take your name and lead you to a private elevator. Reaching your destination, the elevator opens up to another hostess ready to escort you through an intimate dining room. This time the atmosphere is light and airy, yet extremely sensual in its simplicity.
Seated and sipping on a specialty concoction from the bar, an extensive menu is presented… a beautiful love letter, accounting all 10 courses to be explored for the evening. Schmoozed from one course to the next (with the option of wine pairings of course), attention to detail becomes the highest priority. Both our waiter and sommelier execute each round as if trying to top service from the previous course. Providing an explanation of dishes, regions, history, and even a little humor.
Which leads me to my next point – Alo is one fine dining French restaurant that is absolutely genuine. From the food to the service, staying far away from being stuffy or pretentious. Alo is elegant, yet down to earth, and ALL ABOUT the FOOD.
From one plate to the next, each course was a masterpiece. Starting with the East Coast Oyster to the Kanpachi. Each mouthful was fresh and light. A few courses later came the Wagyu Beef Ribcap served with Maitake Mushroom, Baby Spinach, and Black Perigord Truffle. Essentially it was magic in our mouths. Each course had a different texture. Every element purposely placed. Bold flavors were like a work of art and didn’t take over in taste.
As for dessert? Not one but a few rounds came forth rounding out the perfect 10-course tasting meal.
Wrapping up, the special gift of the menu to take home was a nice touch. A wonderful way to remember Alo, with its quality, art, and service. Definitely on par with a Michelin star restaurant.
Price range: 10-course Tasting Menu in the Dining Area $135 per person. 15-course Tasting Menu at the Chef’s Table $165 per person. (Both pricing not including drinks.) A great price considering Alo’s caliber, not to mention an unforgettable experience.
Tip: Not into the Tasting Menu? The cocktail bar offers an a la carte menu. Reservations for the restaurant open only 2 months at a time. A deposit is required at the time of reservation to secure your seat(s), which is applied to your final bill.
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