By: Alison Silveira
Years ago, I lived at 44 Charles Street West in the Manulife Centre in Yorkville and I still consider it to be the hottest neighbourhood in Toronto. When I recently attended the media preview of the rebranded restaurant, The One Eighty Toronto on the 51st floor of the Manulife Centre, it was like a warm, resplendent homecoming.
I took the time to admire the contemporary and stylish design of the restaurant, which features industrial metals and a soft grey palette. Déjà vu set in, as I once again took in the million dollar views of Toronto’s ever evolving, gorgeous skyline.
I greeted my friends and our attentive server offered me a refreshing rosemary bramble cocktail. It was the perfect start to a sumptuous feast. Yorkville is synonymous with luxury and what is more luxurious than tableside bar cart service?
Bringing back this service stops indecisiveness in its tracks, as you can instantly choose appetizers that catch your fancy. I chose the incredible savoury and sweet foie gras crème brûlée. Rich and creamy, it was as tasty as it was indulgent.
Our table also shared the freshly baked Margherita pizza with flavourful San Marzano tomatoes, buffalo mozzarella and basil. The pizza is hand stretched and is accompanied with spicy and chive infused extra virgin olive oils for a burst of bold flavours.
I also sampled the delicate beef carpaccio accompanied with French green beans, frisée, chive oil and pecorino.
The next dish was a simple, yet delicious ricotta caprese salad. The arugula was flavoured with acidic balsamic vinegar and the rich ricotta cheese provided a satisfying creamy texture.
For the main course, I had the divine beef tenderloin, which is among the most tender steak I have had the pleasure of enjoying. Pan seared and cooked to perfection, it is served with smooth buttermilk spun potatoes and balanced well with asparagus.
Just as I thought that it could not get any better, I was treated to a trio of mouth-watering desserts. I have eaten panna cotta before, but I have never had it with creamsicle flavouring. It was unique, fluffy and bold in flavour with candied orange and petrified mandarin crisps.
The lemon meringue verrine with buttery graham streusel was silky and tart.
I saved the best for last, enjoying each morsel of the chocolate peanut butter tart accompanied with candied peanut bark and dark chocolate ganache. Heavenly is the only word that will suffice in describing this decadent chocolate lover’s treat.
My homecoming was certainly a memorable occasion with warm service, scrumptious and dynamic dishes and unforgettable views of Toronto’s stunning skyline. With options galore and a feast for the senses, I cannot wait to return to The One Eighty.
55 Bloor Street West
Manulife Centre, 51st Floor
Toronto, ON, M4W 1A5
Photos of food by Alison Silveira and interior by Bruce Gibson Photography.