Last month we were lucky enough to be invited to the unveiling of Lamesa’s Fall/Winter menu and the debut of their new Head Chef Daniel Cancino!
|Lamesa Filipino Kitchen|
669 Queen Street West
Toronto, ON M6J 1E6
We arrived early and sat down by the bar to take in the comfortable murmur of chatter and quiet buzz of kitchen prep. I’d been to Lamesa previously before with my Fiance (who is Filipino) and we had both enjoyed the delicious familiar flavours and modern twist Lamesa is known for. Needless to say we were pumped to try this season’s new menu. While we were lucky enough to sample most of the dishes in the new menu, and had a new cocktail every few dish (spoiled!) here were some of the highlights of the night!
Our night started off right with a bang as we were treated with a deliciously beautiful drink, Boracay Breezy made of dark rum, coconut rum, banana liqueur, macerated strawberries and HOUSE MADE peach liqueur. Apparently this took them a full 6 weeks to make out of fresh Ontario peaches – now that’s dedication! Did I mentioned it was super delicious? I could drink a gallon of this stuff (though for health and safety reasons, I would recommend against that….)!
Then came the refreshing Tuna Kinilaw. This is what Chef Daniel describes as a Filipino-style ceviche, packed fresh albacore tuna, coconut calamari vinaigrette, fresh chilis and coconut guacamole, it was served with shrimp chips on the side. Super delicious and refreshing. I certainly would not mind if this replace all nachos and normal guacamole from here on!
Then we had the Ensaladang Talong which is the roasted eggplant salad. Topped with creme fraiche, salted egg, puffed wild rice and sweet soy it was a rich tasty salad with substance. Eggplant was perfectly roasted.
Next up we tried the Corned Beef Lumpia and it tastes exactly as it sounds! Crunchy spring rolls stuffed with corned beef (a Filipino favourite) and topped with salty kimchi and sweet banana ketchup! What a bite!
The Beet Maalat Salad was fresh beets with salted egg, white anchovy, thai basil, watercrss and wild rice. A sweet, refreshing salad!
The Cauliflower Ginataan was delicious roasted cauliflower topped with some fun coconut foam and fried greens. This was one of my favourites for the night and I just loved the combination of sweet, salty, tangy flavours.
The Beef Bulalo was the richest dish of the night – short-rib, bone marrow, cabbage, potato, and beef and ginger broth – delectable and rich! The broth was so good we had every last drop with our rice.
The night ended off some delicious Ube Leche Flan and a hearty round of applause for the incredibly talented Chef Daniel and the rest of the spectacular staff. Chef Daniel was even kind enough to send us all home with some house-made sweet banana ketchup (yummy!).
While retaining the familiar base of common Filipino flavours, Chef Daniel has indeed elevated the cuisine and given it a local and classy twist! If you’re interested in having a quiet, romantic date with some delicious and unique food, this is the place to try this season! Two thumbs up from the Filipino Fiance. We’ll be back soon!
The Damage: Serviced Tapa’s stuff, plates range from $7-$24ish)