Friday, February 01, 2013

Farmhouse Tavern is the type of restaurant you want to tell people about, but want to keep to yourself too.  It’s been open for a few months in the Junction and has been gaining positive word of mouth through friends in the neighborhood. he Farmhouse does a brunch service on Saturdays and Sundays from 11a-3p, and it’s a great concept: like their dinner service, there’s no set menu, with the days menu of “farm driven food” scrawled on a chalkboard. A Sunday brunch with friends provided the perfect excuse to visit.

We settled into the front tavern space – there’s a main dining room “farmhouse” and the private room “Hunt Club” in the back as well. As soon as we settled in, we took a moment to take in the charm of the room. It’s a flea market of knick knacks, with a comfortable indie soundtrack playing underneath the chatter. It’s sunny and bright, with a clear view of a well-stocked bar. There's a noticeable focus on VQA wines, craft beers like Beaus, and cocktails.

I was driving, so I skipped the smoked caesar (and regretted it - LOOK AT THIS THING) and went straight for the coffee, again and again – mornings, amirightfolks? What? Oh, right, brunch. Here’s what was on the board that Sunday:
Typical brunch menu at the Farmhouse Tavern
My immediate question – what the heck is the Mother and Child Reunion? Some sort of chicken and egg creation? When the waitress told me it was duck eggs, soft boiled and then rolled in panko and fried, with some duck prosciutto, I muttered a silent apology to Daffy Duck and ordered it. With gusto.

Once the waitress answered our questions and took the orders, she spun around and headed to the back.
“Our waitress is skipping,” I think to myself. This is a good sign. She returned with drinks and a delicious welcome basket of chocolate chip and cornbread muffins that restore your faith in breakfast pastry and makes regret every mealy franchise café muffin you ever forced down. And that's a thing I notice and start to love about Farmhouse Tavern - that extra effort on fresh ingredients, or a combination that elevates standard brunch fare: the mimosas were made with sparking wine from Hinterland Wine, the coffee was a satisfying Reunion Island roast. You feel spoiled, but it's really just how things should be at their best.

Our table full of, oh, let’s say Twitter-heavy users, almost collectively dropped their phones when the food showed up and we dug in: everything was incredibly delicious. My eggs had a crunchy outer layer, but a soft yolk that I mopped up with a hunk of toasted, buttery bread. The other table favourite was the smoked chicken crepe, with chicken smoked on site and a slice of brie melted on top. The gluten-free/vegetarian friendly mushroom frittata was also well received. The side salads served with our meals were also bright and fresh, as we tried to identify a couple of the delicious veggies – it was watermelon radish that baffled us. The whole meal was outstanding.
The Mother n' Child Reunion - duck eggs, soft boiled and deep fried, with streaks of duck prosciutto, hunk of tasted bread and a salad. That might be a chuck of foie gras on the side.
We lingered for a while, coffees refreshed and mimosas poured down.  We didn’t feel rushed or crowded. It was how brunch is supposed to be: restorative, social, engaging.

Farmhouse Tavern has been around a short while, but it’s made a deep impression. I will return.

Sample dinner menu at Farmhouse Tavern
Farmhouse Tavern is open for dinner service Thurs – Sunday – follow them on Twitter and Facebook for menus and special culinary events. One of the highlights is the F*ck Monday events on Sundays – a schedule of hourly evening specials that culminates in a half-priced menu kicking in at 9pm.

Farmhouse Tavern
1627 Dupont St. (between Dufferin Ave and Symington Ave).
Serving Dinner Thursday through Sunday @ 6pm.
Brunch on Saturday & Sunday @ 11am-3pm.

Reservations can be sent via text to: 416-561-9114