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Introducing: Patria, the new King West spot for traditional Spanish food from Charles Khabouth and Hanif Harji

Introducing: Patria

(Image: Gizelle Lau)

Patria is the latest collaboration between Hanif Harji and Charles Khabouth, the pair who opened Weslodge this summer (Patria is located just down the alleyway). The concept: authentic Spanish food—a cuisine they point out is notably underrepresented in Toronto—with plenty of imported products and wine. While the food may be rustic, the Commute Home–designed room is anything but, with three edgy portraits of a Spanish woman at the entrance and, along a wall, a row of stamped meat cleavers that spell out “full stomach, happy heart” in Spanish. Most eye-catching of all is the giant rose-and-diamond cross-stitch art installation covering an image of a flamenco dancer, which took 485 hours and 17,109 stitches to make (all documented in this time-lapse video).

Behind the food at Patria are executive chef Stuart Cameron and chef de cuisine Claudia Gibson, who serve a menu of rustic Spanish tapas, raciones (larger sharing plates) and full-on mains. The tapas include salted marcona almonds ($6), Spanish cheese served with quince jam and sourdough ($8) and sliced-to-order jamón ibérico, the cult black-hoof Spanish ham that’s cured for 36 months ($30). For raciones, there’s ham croquettes ($7), blistered shishito peppers ($6) and heftier dishes like a cuttlefish pasta ($18), while the mains include a lamb chop in romanesco sauce ($21) and a wood fire–roasted rib-eye ($65). Naturally, there’s also a large-format paella for the table ($40–$48), cooked to order in 30 minutes.

Harji boasts that 75 per cent of the wine menu at Patria is made up of private-order Spanish wines not available at the LCBO; they’re also selling bottles of Estrella Damm Inedit, the beer designed by Ferran Adrià of El Bulli. The cocktail list was created by Elan Marks (who oversees the cocktails at Weslodge, Patria and Storys), and includes a Spanish manhattan with bourbon, sherry nectar and bitters ($17) and the Cava Nuevo, with gin, lemon, simple syrup and cava ($15). Patria is open for lunch, dinner and drinks, and also offers a Spanish brunch on the weekends.

Patria, 478 King St. W., 416 367-0505,, @PatriaTO

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  • Frank Lin

    We tasted the food at their pop-up event earlier this year and it was delicious. Looking forward to it!

  • GK

    I wish them well,and I think they’ll do well if they manage to get people to pay $15 for a cocktail based on the French 75 for which ingredients cannot come out to more than $4 to $5 max. I think proprietors are taking advantage of the current mania for cocktails and that is regrettable.

  • Perry

    Went here and it was surprisingly great! Feels in a great niche that Toronto restaurants really lack!!

  • Skipton Ash

    I found the owner to be… something of a Hipster Doofus

  • Well Paid…Not Wealthy

    Really Niche? I think people need to research the city more for food.

    Embrujo Flamenco

    Just to name a few. But then again it isnt on King Street.

  • Skipton Ash

    I really think there needs to be less Hipster Doofuses (Doofi?) out there…

  • CS

    In typical Charles Kabouth fashion, the place looks great, the food not so much. How any self-respecting restauranteur can open a Spanish place and substitute padron peppers (a staple of pretty much every single tapas bar in Spain) with mean long green chillies is beyond me.

    Newsflash to Charles: Padrons are being grown locally, and Geoff Hopgood was serving a more authentic (and seriously delicious) version of the classic Spanish bar snack at his (East Coast-inspired no less) restaurant for a couple of months.

    Shame on you and your kitchen staff Charles.

  • Toronto Foodie

    CS … I have to disagree with your rather bitter comment on Patria …in typical Hanif Harji and Charles Khabouth style the place is another wonderful addition to Toronto and as for the padron peppers (yes a staple at pretty much every tapas bar in Spain!!) was delicious – it is predictable – next time DON’t ORDER IT!!!
    We loved it – the food, the vibe and the service and look forward to reserving the fabulous private table on the second floor.
    Well done yet again Hanif and Charles!

  • danielle

    CS: I’ve been searching for padron peppers in Toronto for the last couple of years at Toronto farmers’ markets and specialty food stores to no avail. Can you tip me off as to where to find them?

  • Skipton Ash

    …And there won’t be snow in Africa this Christmas… Tyne???