On Sunday morning, Richard and I were in the mood for a leisurely brunch on a cozy patio, and Beast’s quiet patio fit the bill.
We started by ordering the special that was advertised on the menu board in front of the restaurant: Maple bacon donuts! These donuts would send Homer Simpson into fits of ecstasy. The maple glaze was thick and sweet, the candied bacon was salty and crunchy, the donut was soft and moist. What else can I say? I want another one right now.
We were both in the mood for a sparkling wine, so Richard ordered the Prosecco and I tried the 2010 Hinterland “Ancestral”, a sparkling rosé from Prince Edward County. It was sweeter than most rosés that I’ve had, and I really enjoyed it.
I had the huevos rancheros. On the menu it described them as having chorizo and I was expecting to receive a dish that had some chorizo, but instead I was pleased to see that there was a whole sausage sitting between my eggs and that rich, spicy sauce. The eggs were fluffy and moist, the tortilla was crunchy, the chorizo was spicy and so was the sauce. It was very bold and flavourful.
Richard’s dish was the complete opposite of mine! His cardamom pancakes were fluffy and sweet, and the pork belly added a slight saltiness. I didn’t taste a lot of his because I was too busy with my own, but I might order it for myself next time if I’m in the mood for something sweet.
Ivy Knight heard that we were going for brunch at Beast and encouraged us to try the tater tots. They were so good! They came as adorable little popcorn-sized bits with sweet chili sauce and sour cream to dip them in. They were light and fluffy with just a little bit of crunch on the outside… I could have had the whole plate to myself.
There were lots of other things in the menu that I wanted to try, including a water buffalo poutine made with gnocchi instead of french fries! What is it with water buffalo these days, Toronto chefs? This is the second place in a week that I’ve visited where it’s been on the menu. Not that I’m complaining… I loved the water buffalo liver at Foxley and I can’t wait to try this poutine next time we visit! I’ve also heard that the sticky toffee pudding is to die for, and they have spot prawns and grits, which was one of my favourite things at the now closed Hoof Cafe.
The first/last time we had Beast’s brunch, it was in the winter and we chose it partially because of their cozy and tranquil space. I kind of wish that we hadn’t waited this long to make a return visit. This place definitely fills a void in the creative brunch scene in Toronto, and with their lovely patio on a quiet residential street it’s the perfect spot for a tranquil Sunday brunch.