Last weekend marked my traditional birthday celebrations with Joyce (October 3) and Karen (October 5). The three of us started celebrating our birthdays together (kind of accidentally :P) back in university, and this year was our first time re-kindling that tradition since we’re finally all in the same country at the same time!
After a bit of a reservations kerfuffle with another venue, we managed to book a table for dinner at REDS Wine Tavern on 77 Adelaide Street West. We picked a place close to Nathan Philips Square to check out the Ai Weiwei bicycle exhibition being featured for Nuit Blanche (more on that event later) afterwards.
REDS is also pretty fancy and has a great wine and cocktail menu. I got a Ginger Schnapps ($9.50), which was simple and delicious. :)
Karen and I decided on four dishes to share. Our first shareable was the Caramelized Tomato and Goat Cheese Gratin. The crostini was too hard, and the gratin had too much tomato, not enough goat cheese for me. Still a decent enough dish though.
Another shareable: Lobster Guacamole! I love guacamole and was super excited for this one, and initially a little disappointed with it considering how expensive it is. The chips were already cold when served to us, and I guess we were just expecting a more elaborate presentation with the lobster-guacamole combination. Once I got over that, I actually enjoyed this dish and
probably definitely ate more than my half of it. It was some good guac.
The BLT Mussels is one of three mussel-based main dishes offered by REDS. Neither of us completely read the description and assumed the “BLT” stood for bacon, lettuce, tomato instead of bacon, lager, triple crunch mustard. Haha, confusion ensued for a while. The bacon flavour came out pretty well though and we were both impressed with how many mussels there were. REDS didn’t skimp out! The pretzel was also good, and I preferred using it for the tomato and cheese gratin.
Even though we were full (and going broke at this point), the three of us birthday girls opted for Flourless Chocolate Cake for dessert. Our initial plan had been to stay at this place just for dinner, wander around for Nuit Blanche, and eventually sit back down for drinks and dessert. I’m SO HAPPY we decided to have dessert here. While good, we weren’t particularly that impressed with our food up until this magical point of the evening. My taste in chocolate can get pretty decadent, and this was so delicious and did not disappoint! Definitely, highly recommend.
The atmosphere of the place was perfect. I love the lighting and our location on the second floor overlooking the street. Even though we were a fairly large group, we had a lot of space. We were a little farther away from other tables so we had a bit of our own private space and noise levels weren’t a problem for us or other customers (I hope!). Service was also very friendly and efficient!
Each of us spent $50 (including an 18% gratuity for large groups) on our meals. It was a special occasion!