Terroni on Yonge

I celebrated a birthday recently and a friend of mine too me to dinner to mark the passing of another year. I was in the mood for Italian and she loves Terroni. Since I had already chosen three places to eat this week, I was more than happy to go with her recommendation. Rather than go all the way downtown to the Terroni on Adelaide, we decided to only go most of the way down to the Yonge St location.

Before I talk about the food, let’s talk atmosphere. Terroni is a bit upscale. And when I say that I don’t mean you can show up in jeans. It’s the palate that’s more upscale. To be blunt, they don’t cater to the East Side Mario’s crowd. When we were in Terroni on Adelaide I found it has a decidedly younger clientele and almost a club-like feel. There were no children and more attentive staff. I can’t remember what the staff wore, but at the Yonge St location they’re in whatever street clothes they put on that day, which as a customer I’ve never cared for and as a Public Relations person I find an unnecessary risk and a blot on your restaurant’s image. The Yonge location was pretty full, but there was no waiting for a table at 6:15 on a Friday which was both a surprise and a relief since we were hungry. After going up the stairs to the dining room, we were let to a tiny table next to a roaring fire (nice after our windy half block walk but quickly left us unpleasantly overheated). The wall we were next to was covered in a canvas tarp. The kind you put up during a renovation, so were they renovating or does that pass for decor? Lastly, the staff left something to be desired. Our waitress was a little less than attentive to our needs (and watching to tables near ours, we weren’t alone in that). But we were looking forward to some good food so we just made cursory note of these things.

Up first were drinks. My go to is a Long Island Iced tea, which I couldn’t get because Terroni, at least the one on Yonge doesn’t have a full service bar; their wine selection though is very good. I started with the Funghi Assoluti, a very simple mushroom and arugula salad that was absolutely divine. For my main I chose the Gnocchi alla Simi because I love gnocchi. When it’s done right it just seems to melt on your tongue and it’s a nice, light meal. It’s also something I never make at home, so I often order it when I’m out at a good quality restaurant. My gnocchi was served in a simple tomato sauce with a ball of ricotta on top. I admit, I was expecting the ricotta to be in the sauce, but I’m adventurous enough to just dive right in. Perhaps my tastes are just too plebeian but I found the juxtaposition of the warm gnocchi and cold ricotta less than satisfying to my palate. Not to mention the fact that my dish quickly went lukewarm. And the tomato sauce was quite boring. Simple doesn’t need to be boring people. Remember that. I’ve tasted tomato sauces that are simply and very nicely flavoured and I expected that at Terroni. That was probably the biggest letdown of my dinner experience. I found myself longing for the Gnocchi della Mama I used to order at Buon Giornos which is an Italian place on 17th Avenue in Calgary. (I highly recommend it if you’re ever in the city.) My friend had a scary salad off the specials menu – I say scary because beets always scare me – and she really enjoyed it. For her main she chose the same thing she always comes to Terroni for, the Polentona pizza. As someone who usually prefers a red sauce on her pizza, I can tell you that it was quite good. In fact the smoked prosciutto (or speck) was superb. Click here for the full Terroni menu.

In closing let me just say that Terroni food is pretty good, but unless you’re taking the kiddies, go downtown to the Adelaide location for a more grown up, well-tended experience. And if you see Flashpoint’s Sergio di Zio, please let me know immediately!

 

And that’s my foodie 2¢ for today.

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~ by leslies2cents on March 5, 2012.

3 Responses to “Terroni on Yonge”

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