North 44 is located in a large, stylish space on Yonge Street in Toronto. The restaurant was opened by Mark McEwan and Sash Simpson serves as the executive chef. It’s been on my list of restaurants to try for a while, and since it’s in my neighborhood, I figured it was finally time to give it a try.
We started things off with a bottle of Prosecco. The waitress brought out some lovely strawberries seasoned with a little pepper as an accompaniment.
For my appetizer I had herb crusted beef carpaccio with capers, radishes, celery hearts, shaved reggiano, and citrus aioli. The preparation and garnishes were pretty standard, but it was very tasty.
My boyfriend had the hand rolled gnocchi with white wine reggiano cream sauce and crispy brussel leaves. The texture of the gnocchi was great, very soft and light and it paired well with the cream sauce. I also really enjoyed the crispy brussel sprouts.
For my main I had duck three ways – with crisp confit, breast and seared foie gras, potato galette, spiced apple and natural juices. The duck breast was amazing and cooked rare, as I ordered it. Likewise, the confit was a crisp and decadent, with the meat falling off the bone. The fois gras wasn’t the best I’ve had – it was a little stringy.
My boyfriend got the 12 ounce prime rib steak. I didn’t try it, but he seemed pretty happy with it.
The steak came with truffle frites with shaved reggiano. Can’t really go wrong with those.
For dessert I had blueberry-lemon panna cotta with candied blueberries and sour cream ice cream. They had just changed over to their spring dessert menu, and this was lovely. I like tart desserts, so the lemon panna cotta really hit the spot. This is usually also served with a granola, but was left off due to my nut allergies.
This is the Cornucopia. Housemade marshmallows, peanut butter foam, dark chocolate sorbet and chocolate hazelnut ice cream. This was a fun dessert, though a bit rich for me after such a big meal. The hazlenut ice cream was delicious though.
My meal at North 44 was great. The food was delicious, the service was quick and friendly, and the space is cozy and romantic. I’m glad it’s just around the corner.