10.18.2007

jamie kennedy wine bar

We celebrated Allan's birthday with lunch at Jamie Kennedy Wine Bar, near the St Lawrence Market in Toronto. We've been there a few times, thanks to (former?) wmtc reader Genet, who recommended it way back when.

If you ever looking for a place to enjoy something simple and delicious, without having a large formal meal - and if you like good wine and good food in a stylish atmosphere - you can't do better than Jamie Kennedy Wine Bar.

They offer a small-plate menu, similar to tapas; every plate has a suggested wine pairing, which you can order in a small tasting size or a regular six-ounce glass. The menu changes very frequently, depending on the season and what's best in the market.

Allan and I both love tasting menus or small-plate menus, where you can eat small amounts of several different things. We both love wine, and we appreciate really good service. The service here is impeccable - friendly, attentive, helpful and unpretentious. Until you've experienced that, you can't imagine what a difference it makes in your enjoyment of a meal.

Our experience yesterday really illustrated that. There was a small mistake - you couldn't even call it a screw-up - with one of our orders. It turns out they recently renumbered a few tables, so our frites - these amazing Yukon Gold fries, you can't believe how perfect they are - went to a different table. So there was a slightly longer interlude between dishes than there might have been. You could hardly call it a wait, it was so slight.

Later, as we're starting to order dessert, the host brought us a dessert plate - three desserts, beautifully dressed and arranged - with a small candle, compliments of the house, to apologize. Not one dessert, three.

Then the sommelier, Jamie Drummond, who apparently is well known in the Toronto restaurant world, brought us each a glass of a new wine he had just bought, also complimentary. This was also supposed to be an apology, because he was doing business with a winery representative at a table nearby, and might have disturbed us. (We were not disturbed, but we were interested.)

Since leaving New York City and adopting our new suburban lifestyle, we care a lot less about restaurants than we used to. We eat home a lot more, and when we go out, we usually stay in Mississauga. But once in a while, it's nice to refresh our memories of what a really good restaurant does.

Many cheers for Jamie Kennedy Wine Bar. I hope to try his other restaurants as well.

7 comments:

loneprimate said...

It's interesting to hear you say you eat home a lot more. I've probably said this here before, but it seemed to me when I was in the US that people there ate out quite a bit more than people here. I'm used to that once, maybe twice a week, but it seemed more than norm than the exception when I was in the US, and even during protracted stays when it wasn't just about people entertaining me as their guest.

I'd be interested in hearing about how you've adapted, if you don't mind dragging that out. :)

L-girl said...

I've probably said this here before, but it seemed to me when I was in the US that people there ate out quite a bit more than people here.

Yes, I remember your saying that. And if you observed that in the rest of the US, double it for NYC. Eating out is the norm in NYC. Trying new restaurants - talking about new restaurants, what you ate, how the service was, etc. etc. etc. - could be called New York City's national pastime.

We didn't do it as much as many other people we knew, but we still did it more than most non-NY-ers.

I'd be interested in hearing about how you've adapted, if you don't mind dragging that out. :)

Why thank you, I don't mind at all. If one person expresses interest, I'm ready to write. :) I'll do so tomorrow.

redsock said...

One short answer for warm weather: backyard + grill.

Jim said...

My blog uses Typepad...but I wanted to comment and say how much I like your writing...and also express appreciation for your piece on Doris Lessing.

And also...welcome to Canada

I'm now at www.reedwrites.ca

L-girl said...

Jim, thank you so much. Welcome to wmtc.

Genet said...

Hi! I'm still around, though no longer blogging! Glad that reccommendation fit you so well!

L-girl said...

Hi Genet! It's amazing how "us" the recommendation was. Glad to know you're still reading. Maybe we'll see you at wmtc3 next summer.