Sud Forno (Yonge)
This space encompasses a more casual grab-and-go downstairs cafeteria and an upstairs table service space geared towards more hushed, high end dining.
Across from Dineen Coffee, this place serves up many items familiar to Terroni patrons, like pizza, sandwiches, and salads, as well as brunch, though offerings can be found here that are not available at the Queen St. location.
A coffee bar during the day turns into a cocktail bar for after-work hours, with a DJ that spins from lunch hour until the early evening.
The downstairs level operates in a sort of upscale assembly line style, where you take a tray and make the rounds through stations of various ready-made products, and cash out at the end.
Prices are typically per portion. Naturally, signature Sud Forno breads like the popular Pugliese take centre stage displayed on a back wall.
Metal stairs woven through with leather or an elevator conveys you up to the second floor space, rich with leather banquettes and complete with an eye-catching central lighting feature that ties the two floors together.
A unique new offering available on “La Mensa,” the first floor, are gelato on sticks ($5) in flavours like pistachio dipped in white chocolate with salted pistachios on the outside.
Coddled eggs ($7) are a thrifty and unique steam table option, egg cooked in a jar with potato puree, spicy tomato sauce, and n’duja, served with crostini for a crackly, creamy snack that’s loaded with flavour.
A juicy, colourful agro-dolce salad ($9.75) brings crunch with heirloom carrots and pistachios and moisture with citrus for a light lunch that still feels full-blooded Italian.
Of course, Sud Forno signature pastries like puffy sugar-dusted bombolone ($3) filled with either “sudtella” (also available for purchase) or crema.
Every Tuesday starting at 4 down here there’s also an aperitivo hour featuring free snacks with the purchase of a drink.
Saccoccia ($25) literally takes it to the next level as it’s one of the dishes that can only be ordered from the separate “Da Geppetto” upper floor menu designed by Chef Giovanna Alonzi. Punchy spinach and basil pasta envelopes soft burrata, with cherry tomato, parmigiano, and sage on top.
Branzino ($38) is served whole in a giant metal pan with bitter greens, firmly cooked potatoes, some charred eggplant, lemon and fennel with a scattering of omnipresent cherry tomatoes.
A still hefty “piccola”-sized Matta pizza has tomato sauce, mozzarella, spicy sausage, roasted red peppers, and meaty black olives.
This location isn’t to be missed for lovers of Terroni, imported Italian products, Italian home cooking. A beautiful and very versatile hangout space in a neighbourhood that needs one.