(Image: Renée Suen)
The restaurant at the new Beverley Hotel looks, at a glance, just like any other Queen West resto-lounge: bubbly, black-clad servers rotate around a dimly lit dark-wood dining room. The food, however, by former Hawthorne chef Eric Wood, is polished and unexpectedly playful. The execution has a couple of hiccups, but there’s ambition in every dish. Wood’s charred edamame, smothered in a tangy chili-maple sauce, tastes like a sensational upgrade on Chinese takeout, and a creative surf and turf brings a pickle-packed hanger steak tartare and sweet lobster carpaccio. The juicy burger is the best dish of the meal, layered with mild, squeaky Guernsey cheese, rich bordelaise and a surprising slice of watermelon. For dessert, Wood churns his own smooth, custardy ice cream in flavours like orange-Sichuan and buttermilk vanilla.
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