Almost every single media outlet in Toronto has covered chef Trevor Wilkinson’s Trevor Kitchen and Bar since it opened in 2007. And the reviews were all the same: it’s an absolute must-eat. Well, fast-forward seven years and Trevor felt it was time to team up with Mike Yaworski, owner of celebrated dive bar Wide Open, to bring a laidback tavern to the people of Toronto that also happened to offer some upscale eats.
The Tavern By Trevor (147 Spadina Avenue) is full of wood and light. The restaurant’s large west-facing window looks out at the corner of Richmond and Spadina (who doesn’t love a good people watching session?) and the soon-to-open patio space in front. A large harvest table, dark leather booths, and wood-framed mirrors fill the comfortable space. It’s the kind of balanced atmosphere where ordering crispy foie gras (with ice wine concord and grape jelly) doesn’t seem any more out of place than having six pints on a sunny afternoon would. In other words, a good place to be no matter what the occasion.
Sitting at the bar with Trevor, we talk about all the words that have been used to describe his food: sophisticated, new-Canadian, French-inspired. The list goes on. But as far as The Tavern is concerned, it’s Trevor’s girlfriend who offers the description we have to agree with most – decadent comfort food. ‘Cause this is bar food to be sure, it’s just better than most that you’re used to.
We start off with the green pea and lettuce salad. It comes with feta, fresh mint, and a champagne dressing that keeps it light and easy. It’s a simple dish but one that’s refreshing and would work perfectly for lunch on the patio with a nice white wine. The pepper-seared beef and greens, however, is a salad we could eat any day of the week, regardless of the weather. It’s simply a must try.
We know, you’re confused. We mentioned bar food and then talked salads. Don’t worry, Trevor didn’t just stop at the greens. How about a double smoked bacon and pork belly poutine, a pork and beans dish that features duck confit, or a bison and pork tourtiere? Yeah, that’s what we thought. The best part about The Tavern isn’t just the comfort food, however, it’s also the comforting prices. Though it’s a seasonal menu, and one that’s clearly bound to change, every single item currently up for ordering (including an 8oz dry-aged sirloin) is under $20.
Whether you’re headed there for brunch, lunch, dinner, or dessert, The Tavern by Trevor has something for everyone… including a deep-fried Snickers bar with bourbon caramel and vanilla ice cream. But hey, we’ll let you decide which meal category that falls under – we’re not here to judge.
#LYNL | (Live Your Notable Life)