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Ex–Black Hoofer Colin Tooke opens Grand Electric in Parkdale

Shortly after Jeremy Day shuttered his Parkdale wine and cheese bar Café Taste in October, rumours began to fly that someone associated with the Black Hoof would be taking over the space. The building’s owner, however, wouldn’t spill the beans. Thanks to some enthusiastic tweeting last night from Hoof owner Jen Agg and others, the cat’s now out of the bag: the new spot, called Grand Electric, opened last night with ex–Hoof chef de cuisine Colin Tooke at the helm. A bare-bones website and Twitter account have been set up, from which we learn the bar will have “Mexican food, craft beer, brown liquor and loud music.” Agg, for one seems pretty excited: she appended the hashtag “#proudmama” to her congratulatory tweet.

  • Robin

    I went here with 2 friends last night and the food was great!

    The only downside (and I’m sure it will get better with time) was the lack of organized service. With such a small space it would seem that 4 wait staff and a host, service would excel, but it was just awkward at times. (Get a bartender!)

    We sat at a table with out menus for 10 min, and when we asked for menus we were told to walk up to a chalk board with scribbled items. At a cute and bright brunch spot this would be fine, but it was dark and full of people sitting in front of the chalk board (I’m blind as a bat)and needless to say guests looked at me like I was crazy while I squinted at the menu.

    The waiter also told us that they “do not re-cork bottles of wine (?) before we even had a sip. That comment was particularly weird – I assured our nervous waiter that we would likely order a second bottle and would not need either of our empty bottles to be re-corked. Strange way to approach your table – and a bad way to maximize sales – why would you assume your guests wouldn’t be ordering more?

    I think the best part was when we asked for a knife to split an item and were told that they didn’t have any….yes I get it you’re knew – but no knifes – really?

    We were also sat at a “communal table” which I generally love – who doesn’t want to meet fun new people, but this table was a 4 top for sure and we were told “you can sit here but you HAVE to share” sure…. they squished three other guests at the table, and thank god they were funny as we were practically sitting on top of them.

    Overall I like this place and will return – the service was off kilter, but it was amusing at least. And of course the simple but delicious menu, no matter how hard to read, is well worth a repeat visit. Oh and the kick ass music really helps.

  • Lui

    @Robin – many people would completely rip them for the service and experience you went through. If only more people were like you.

  • It’sMe

    @Lui agreed.

  • Robin

    I’ve returned a few time since my first visit and it never fails to impress.

    The service is, I’m happy to say, excellent!