|image taken from gallivant.com|
It was a dark and stormy night, the roads were closed, and I was reallllllly lost. Isn't that how most dinner rendezvous begin? Perhaps not. Luckily, my spirits were saved once I (finally) made it to meet a dear friend at Hopgood's foodliner, an east coast inspired eatery located in the heart of Roncesvalles. For anyone that enjoys fresh, sustainable seafood prepared in creative new dishes, this place is for you. We ended up splitting a few plates, tapas style - my favourite way to dine. The food was delectable, without being pretentious. I'm pretty sure the crab cakes came with boxed Triscuits (they were baked, but still the household cracker staple at heart), but it couldn't have been a more apt pairing. No need to mask the flavourful crab dip with some fancy schmancy bread. Also, be sure to check the chalkboard for daily specials, and arrive early enough to actually consume them. They were sold out of the mini lamb burgers so we opted for the roasted peppers, which our waiter explained that each pepper had a one in fifty odds of being incredibly spicy. As someone with a very delicate palate for the picante, each bite was somewhat nerve-racking (or thrilling, I'm undecided).
|trying to sneak a peak at the back room oyster bar|
|beausoleil oysters (mp)|
|smoked mackerel on oatcakes ($15)|
|russian roulette roasted peppers ($13)|
hot crab dip and triscuits ($15)
If the food isn't enough to sell you, come for a pre-Prohibition style cocktail, such as the Seville Sour (gin, aperol, lemon, maramalde, egg whites, and choco-mole bitters, $14). The ambiance ranges from high-spirited liveliness in the front, to cozy intimacy in the back. Or if you just want to pop in for a drink, hop on a stool at their ten seat bar. Hopgood's has found a way to fit the quaint/indie Roncesvalles vibe, but without the dreaded long waits and overwhelming hipster crowd of the Ossington/Queen scene. Give it a go.