Restaurant of the Month: R&D

Toronto is becoming an amazing food city and its taken me a while to come around and my recent dinner at R&D, a newly opened restaurant in Toronto’s bustling Chinatown, has helped in a big way.  If you’re a fan of the reality cooking competition, Master Chef Canada, you will undoubtably know Eric Chong – the winner of Canada’s first season of Master Chef and well, this is his first restaurant.  Inside the beautiful space, you can see the open kitchen from every angle and Eric hard at work.  There wasn’t one dish that disappointed but a couple that surprised me in taste, in a good way.  General Sanders’ Chicken was one of them.  With a great crispy texture and unique flavour – I think its the five spice in the coating, the chicken was moist and delicious.  Served with Hong Kong style egg waffles was a great twist, a much lighter batter than a typical American waffle.  The other was the dessert.  You know me, I will immediately be attracted to any dish that sounds remotely different.  Well, when I saw crispy smoked milk on the menu, not knowing what that was, I just had to order it.  Looking like small donuts, the texture is something I’ve never had and so hard to describe, similar to fried tofu – you’re just going to have to go there and try it yourself!

The very discreet entrance to R&D.

The very discreet entrance to R&D.

Inside the dining room area of R&D.

Inside the dining room area of R&D.

Starting the night off right with a variety of cocktails.

Starting the night off right with a variety of cocktails – mine’s the one with the umbrella, pina colada bubble tea.

Roasted beet gado gado with pat chun vinaigrette, walnut, bean sprouts, green beans and crispy bean curd.

Roasted beet gado gado with pat chun vinaigrette, walnut, bean sprouts, green beans and crispy bean curd.

Egg rolls with chicken bamboo shoot and pesto.

Egg rolls with chicken bamboo shoot and pesto.

Shiitake polenta fries with mushroom ketchup.

Shiitake polenta fries with mushroom ketchup.

Little dragon buns filled with spicy sichuan lamb.

Little dragon buns filled with spicy sichuan lamb.

General Sanders' Chicken  with kung pao sauce, sichuan maply syrup and hong kong egg waffles.

General Sanders’ Chicken with kung pao sauce, sichuan maply syrup and hong kong egg waffles.

Lobster chow mein with wok fried lobster and chitarra noodles.

Lobster chow mein with wok fried lobster and chitarra noodles.

Eric's curry made with beef brisket, chinese mustard greens and coconut rice.

Eric’s curry made with beef brisket, chinese mustard greens and coconut rice.

Crispy smoked milk with malted milk ice cream.

Crispy smoked milk with malted milk ice cream.

Banana split - crispy banana fritter, sour cherry, condensed milk & peanut butter, bitter chocolate & tamarind ice creams, coconut cream and macerated strawberries.

Banana split – crispy banana fritter, sour cherry, condensed milk & peanut butter, bitter chocolate & tamarind ice creams, coconut cream and macerated strawberries.

Coconut sugar creme brulee with sour cherry ice cream.

Coconut sugar creme brulee with sour cherry ice cream.

The bar at R&D.

The bar at R&D.

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