Straight Up Porn

 

(….I’m gonna get spammed because of that title, aren’t I?)

So, yes. I’ve told you about this restaurant before. But I don’t care. Know why I don’t care? Because it’s my blog and I can cop out if I want to. And because I went back there last Saturday night and gave the chef carte blanche to cook what he wanted to… and I had one of the most amazing, so simple yet refined, fresh-to-death and dressed-to-impress meals I’ve had all year. Yeah, you heard me: ALL. YEAR. Get your bibs ready, guys: you’re about to drool over some serious food pornography.

Remember that pig roast I went off about at Marben here in Toronto? Well, that pig was so good, and we enjoyed watching the chef do his thing so much that we decided to head back and let him go at ‘er. It was going to be a no holds barred, over the top feast and he was vowed to keep the food coming until we cried Uncle. (He didn’t really know who he was dealing with, poor man…)

Course 1: a luscious plate of Prince Edward Island oysters, served simply on a a bed of rock salt with a shallot vinaigrette.

Course 2: a stunning plate of in-house made charcuterie with confit onion jam, mustard, pickled shallots, and cornichons. Venison heart salami, rabbit rillette cooked in duck fat, paper-thin beef braciole… I was in lust.

 Course 3: a fresh and light beet and chèvre salad with candied pecans

 

Course 4: stupidly dreamy crispy pork and beef empanadas I watched the chef stuff and form with his mitts right in front of my eyes moments before, served with a fresh avocado salsa

 

Course 5: MEAT. Seared muscovy duck breast atop rich polenta, and roasted beef tenderloin with hollandaise, buttery pommes anna potato, pitted kalamata olives, and a smattering of only the freshest and in-season vegetables available. OH GOOD GOD.

 

Course 6, also known as the “Uncle!!!!!” course: Dessert. Straight out of the oven berry cobbler with fresh whipped cream, and the most beautiful little chocolate ice cream sandwiches drizzled with creme anglaise and chocolate sauce.

 

Then I jumped the chef’s bones.

JUST KIDDING! This, though, is my very favorite way to eat: everything fresh, in season, locally sourced, screaming with big bold flavours, familiar and yet totally unexpected at the same time… It was truly perfect. I promise not to bore you with any more Marben worshipping entries from now on. Just know that I will forever be there once a week, sitting at the chef’s table with my bib at the ready. I mean, when I’m in Toronto. Oh, you know what I mean.

24 Comments Add yours

  1. Katie says:

    Holy moly, everything looks so amazing! I really need to go to Toronto! Those ice cream sandwiches… I will dream of them tonight. 😉 I love local food restaurants, everything is super fresh and you are supporting farmers from around your area! Glad you had a fun and delicious time!

  2. What the hell is that salad doing in there? It’s going to get jumped by the duck breast and oysters in a dark alley and have its lunch money taken.

  3. Ed Stephens says:

    Now that’s good porn, I mean food

  4. Phil Kong says:

    Good lord, that looks amazing! I love that you left yourselves in the hands of the chef and he obviously delivered!

    Have a great time in Toronto and good luck with shooting!

  5. elgato47 says:

    Damn, I wish you’d invited me.

  6. Allegra says:

    Wow. That food looks absolutely delicious. The pictures are superb.

  7. Soozcat says:

    I think I’m going to cry. Not only does that look ridiculously delectable, but I could actually eat most of it (as a recently diagnosed diabetic doing my best to maintain normal blood sugar numbers, carbs of any kind are like RADIATION POISONING to my system, so every time I go out now I have to scrutinize the hell outta those restaurant menus). Had never considered Toronto as a restaurant destination before…

  8. Abby says:

    Drool. Drool is now getting on my keyboard. Why don’t I live anywhere close to Toronto?!? Or why is Marben in Cincinnati?!?

  9. tantryl says:

    Every single dish in that degustation is decadent.

    That’s some high class, top shelf food porn right there.

  10. Ben says:

    Do we want to know how much this set you back?

  11. brian says:

    Holy…I’ll be in my bunk.

  12. Kelsey says:

    Can I just say that after discovering your blog tonight at 12:50 p.m., it is now 3:17 a.m. and I am now positively STARVING. Here I am, a poor college student, just subscribed to your blog, and about to go to sleep hungry. Shame on you! But I love it!! Can’t wait for the next post!! 😀

  13. Timothy Beentjes says:

    Please post more marben I enjoy reading it.

  14. zeitgeist says:

    Personally I DEMAND that you report EVERY time you go to Marben. Pretty please?

  15. Geoff Engel says:

    OK. All that looks like pure crack, especially the first two courses–I love oysters, and charcuterie is a) my favorite thing ever and b) my newest I-could-make-that obsession. I’ve got salami and bresaola curing in the basement right now…

  16. Jen says:

    We raise muscovy ducks. They are fabulous. They range around all day eating bugs and plants and we give them a small handful of grain to keep them from straying too far. Love them.

    http://www.littlehomesteadinthevalley.blogspot.com

  17. Courtney says:

    Wow! Everything looks incredible!

  18. Julian says:

    I knew I saw you at Marben. You were coming out and just passed me by so I didn’t get a chance to say hi.

  19. miksas says:

    Now that’s a vegan’s nightmare… scrumptious meats! *MouthWatering*

  20. Astin says:

    I’ve avoided Marben ever since they time they sent me to the hospital by feeding my a walnut dessert that I specifically asked “hey, does any of this have nuts?” and they responded “no” to. You know, except for being full of WHOLE WALNUTS. Now, they did come running out from the kitchen to correct themselves after I’d taken my first (and last) bite.

    But now, after your two gushing posts, I may consider paying them another visit.

    And for the love of all that’s meaty – do yourself a favour and go to The Black Hoof while you’re in Toronto, especially if you love house-made charcuterie.

  21. Heather says:

    Oh dear, Jewel…I always have to restrain myself from licking my computer screen when I see the pictures on your blog because everything looks so delicious! I have a good buddy in Toronto and when/if I ever haul my keister, I know where to go to eat!

  22. Dean says:

    How do you stay so beautiful eating that kind of food?

  23. John Welch says:

    That is a ridiculous line up of food!
    I mean, after each pic, I just kept thinkin no way can they top that but he but it just kept getting better…..Very curious about how the rabbit rillette tasted…Of course, there is no such thing as a bad rillette……

  24. Catizzler says:

    Holy hell on toast, that is the most succulent culinary masterpiece I have ever lain eyes upon! And in Toronto, no less? Hot damn, I must have some!

    And if you’re looking for good eateries next time you’re in the T.O., you have to try the Rails and Ales pub at 1106 Danforth. The burgers alone are damn near orgasmic, and they do greek cuisine too. Trust me, you won’t be disappointed!

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