Mum's the Word
Mum’s the Word serves coffee and breakfast by day, snack and drinks by night, and brunch on weekends, in the same spot where vegan coffee shop The Green Grind used to be.
There are still plenty of plant-based options at the spot.
The angular space has eclectic, mostly industrial industrial detailing, with an artsy accent wall featuring a mural and neon. A mix of high and low seating is ideal for for parties of varying sizes, and there’s a small DJ booth in the corner.
A Vietnamese coffee ($4) has a base of condensed milk topped off with a Hale americano.
Mix the two together for a bittersweet, supercharged coffee drink that’s a little off the beaten path for your average Toronto cafe.
A matcha latte is also $4, far less rare but made with organic matcha.
Buffalo cauliflower mac n’ cheese ($7) is well-priced with tender elbow noodles and appropriately neon orange, silky cheese sauce, and has a decent punch of heat thanks to a house hot sauce the deep-fried cauliflower is dressed with.
Garlic short rib ($9) is the night’s snack special, marinated for 24 hours and dressed with a brightening cilantro yogurt and crushed fresh chilis that bring a good level of spice.
Dutty chips ($6) could use a bit crispier, deeper golden fry on the plantains, but are paired with an imaginative mango aioli.
Jerk chicken sliders ($8) are served on some nice, dense little buns, the marinated chicken topped with diced pineapple and the same slaw finishes off the mac.
$10 cocktails include a Mum’s Daiquiri surprises me with spicy grapefruit juice and a salted rim that defies the usual sweet daiquiri.
The Grass is Greener is a more basic and refreshing gin-based cocktail with muddled basil and cucumber plus lemongrass syrup.
All of the Words is a play on a Last Word cocktail, but replaces flatter gin with smokier mezcal and adds Aperol and rosemary syrup.
A unusual matcha cocktail is on special when I arrive, made with whisky which puzzles me at first but actually stands up the powerful matcha flavour and makes for a unique combination with a little vanilla.
West Indian executive chef Jerome Robinson (of Bacon Nation and his own company) designed the menu, explaining the emphasis on island flavours.
Breakfast sammies, empanadas, bagels and granola are served from 8 a.m. - 6 p.m. with liquor served starting at legal hours, with nighttime snacks and cocktails beginning at 7 p.m.