Chef Matty Mattheson's macho resto-bar was one of the early arrivals on Parkdale’s restaurant row and, three years later, it remains one of the best. Shelves full of junk-shop jetsam allude to the place’s past as a hardware store, but that’s where the hipster grunge ends: the room is clean, white and packed every night with hip, youngish diners. Matheson has toned down his offal-laden menu in favour of fancified comfort food (Korean chicken wings fried in a sticky ginger sauce and heaped with chilies) and dressed-down fine dining (a scallop crudo spiked with sharp yuzu and green Serrano peppers). Matheson displays a softer touch with his airy gnocchi, topped with an oyster mushroom sauce and brightly offset with sweet peas, though a halibut fillet is over-roasted and its navy beans bland. For dessert, a monstrous doughnut is slathered in a sticky tar of Oreos, butterscotch and strawberry preserves.
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