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Cabbagetown has quietly started to become a foodie destination. With such established places already, such as House on Parliament and Stout as well as the new and amazing 420 Smokehouse the folks behind The Irv Gastro Pub knew they had to come out swinging to compete. And they did.
In the spot once formerly home to local favourite Jam Café and the short lived Fare Game, The Irv Gastro Pub renovated the place from top to bottom and gave the old school décor a new school vibe.
The restaurant is basically split in two parts: bar at the front and quiet dining in the back. Seating is limited and it is easy to see why it gets packed so quick.
The drink menu is varied but not overly ambitious. The beers for the most part are local Ontario craft beers with a rotating selection on tap. Beer fans would be definitely interested in their flights. American bourbon also plays a big role for their drink selection. Caesar’s fans would be pretty pleased too.
The menu is quite diverse, ranging from upscale bar staples, sharing plates, a really amusing take on Street food (think pogo sticks, lobster mac and cheese and fish tacos).
Tonight on the menu were burgers and fish and chips. I think this may have been some of the best fish and chips I have had. The batter was extremely light and without a hard crust. The halibut itself was fresh, airy and light. The two pieces were more than adequate. The fries had a bit of a crispy interior but still remained soft with a fresh potato flavour.
The burger (fresh-cut ground rib eye and tenderloin) was quite thick 8oz patty with a touch of pink in the interior. It could have used a touch more cheese but that is just a minor detail.
For desert – the ice cream sandwich. Nothing to fancy here. Good quality ice cream wedged between two sweet cookies.
Spring can’t come fast enough and it will be an incredible spot once the patio is open. Already looking forward to the next visit.
195 Carlton St.
Toronto, ON M5A 2K7