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The Top Food Trends and Who Does Them Best: Late-Night Dining

We’re dining around the clock and the options for a midnight feast are suddenly excellent

The Top Food Trends and Who Does Them Best: Late-Night Dining

Drake One Fifty serves lofty comfort food and smart cocktails well past midnight

At some point over the past year, around the time Rob Ford was smoking crack in a drunken stupor, we became a city that eats at all hours. It now takes weeks of planning to get a table at 10 p.m. at the hotter spots. And if you want a meal after midnight, there are finally options other than greasy all-night diners and those Chinatown backrooms where the only thing anyone orders is “cold tea.” After a three-hour Scorsese opus at the Revue, I’ll go to La Cubana, Corrina Mozo’s new restaurant on Roncesvalles, where the cooks make a mean medianoche, the traditional Havana sandwich stacked with roasted pork, ham and gruyère—they also have versions with chorizo, or guava-glazed short rib, or avocado and queso fresco. The kitchen at the County General, the Queen West gastropub, officially closes at 11, but the place is usually full until last call, patrons scarfing down pork buns and devilled eggs while sipping bourbon cocktails. (They’ve expanded to Riverdale and Bloorcourt.) Even the owners of the prim Nota Bene wanted in on the fun, opening Carbon Bar on Queen East. They serve perfectly smoked southern-style barbecue, fried chicken skin, and intricate cocktails with citrus oils and rare tinctures until late-late-late.

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The Dish

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Five food fads we loathe

Five food fads we loathe: Bread
Places that Charge for bread

Yes, we’re looking at you, Drake One Fifty ($9), Electric Mud BBQ ($3.75) and Hudson Kitchen ($4).

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The Dish

New Reviews

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Review: La Cubana, the retro diner on Roncey, serves sophisticated Cuban snacks

(Image: Gizelle Lau)

(Image: Gizelle Lau)

SEE ALL NEW REVIEWS
La Cubana 1 star
392 Roncesvalles Ave., 416-538-7500

Even on a rainy night, there’s a queue to get into La Cubana, the new Caribbean restaurant from Corinna Mozo, chef-owner of Delux on Ossington. She modelled the seafoam green room on a diner her grandfather once ran in Cuba.

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The Dish

Openings

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Introducing: La Cubana, a stylishly retro diner on Roncesvalles from the owner of Delux

Introducing: La Cubana

Name: La Cubana
Contact Info: 392 Roncesvalles Ave., 416-538-7500
Neighbourhood: Roncesvalles Village
Owners: Corinna Mozo, who also owns Ossington bistro Delux, and her husband Victor Coelho
Chef: Leah Marshall-Hannon, the former chef de cuisine at Delux

The Food: Casual Cuban food, including four takes on the medianoche, a type of Cubano sandwich commonly hocked outside Havana nightclubs (the name translates to “midnight”). For brunch, pork-focused breakfast platters come with poached eggs and salt cod croquettes. A separate kids’ menu caters to the area’s flourishing under-12 crowd.

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Restaurants

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The owner of Delux on Ossington is bringing Cuban snacks to Roncy

Empanadas from Delux’s Cuban lunch menu (Image: Ryan Szulc)

Corinna Mozo’s Ossington bistro Delux is known for its split personality: it serves pressed Cubanos and conch fritters by day, and traditional bistro food by night. Now the French-trained chef is expanding her Latin brand with a new, all-Cuban restaurant in Roncesvalles. The appropriately named La Cubana, which opens next month in the former Blue Plate space at 392 Roncesvalles, will have a leafy back patio, a takeout window for donuts and coffee, and a menu of grilled fish, empanadas and other Cuban standards. For those who don’t want to wait: cocktails and snacks from the new menu will be available at Delux this Friday and Saturday. [The Grid]

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