Aloette Liberty Village
Aloette is the second location of the French diner at Queen and Spadina, succeeding Alo, its sister restaurant two floors below, known for a ritzy multi-course tasting menu.
Where you eat in a space reminiscent of a private rail car at the first Aloette, this Liberty Village spin-off completely dedicated to takeout, has a bit more of a casual approach.
Orders are made inside at a sleek takeout counter or from an outdoor pickup window and best enjoyed at one of the nearby tables under the covered walkway of Liberty Market.
Commute, who was behind all of the previous designs of the other Alo locations, transformed this former Garden Gangsters juice bar. The same brown-toned tiles that cover the floor at the Queen West go-to are on the back wall here as a thoughtful touch.
The menu made up of Aloette's best-sellers – and a few new items – is thanks to owner Patrick Kriss, executive chef Solomon Mason, previously of Aloette and Alo, and chef de cuisine Harun Younussi, also of Alo.
The Aloette burger (on its own: $14, burger and fries: $18) is one previous location classic that has gained something of a cult following. A half brisket, half chuck patty and fried Beaufort cheese from the north of France come on a Fred's Bread bun.
Pickled onion and shredded lettuce add extra flavour while fries, which are triple fried in beef fat (new to this location), make a noteworthy pair with the Russian dressing.
The steak frites ($24) is a new feature on the menu. A six-ounce AAA striploin is made with sauce au poivre (also known as a peppercorn sauce) and gets a side of the dangerously addictive fries.
Aloette wedge salad ($14) with wild rice, parmesan, and sides of olive oil and chive cream for the dressings, is another fan favourite from the original location.
Never-before-seen salads include the watermelon salad and tomato salad ($14) made up of juicy heirlooms and sourdough croutons that take this bowl of mixed greens to the next level.
It comes as no surprise that the signature lemon meringue pie ($8) is available.
Meringue is made fresh each morning before topping the already impressively tall lemon middle and is rimmed by a crust made of graham crackers.
Another dessert option is the homemade soft-serve sundaes that are special to this location. There is a strawberry funnel cake version and a birthday cake one ($6.50) with chunks of cake, a pile of whipped topping, and a sparkler whether it's actually your birthday or not.
When it comes to drinks, Aloette's private label VQA wines are available in red, white and rose, which you can get by the glass ($8) or the bottle ($35).
Adding to the selection are a few cocktails in small cans including a bourbon-based Longchamp, tequila negroni and Frizz-presso Martini ($8).
Dog Child, a Toronto-based dog food brand, has partnered with beloved Toronto restaurant Aloette to offer a limited edition menu of items specially designed for dogs at Aloette Liberty Block Party.
The two brands have partnered to offer a full day of entertainment and bites, designed to include dogs in the fun. Humans and dogs alike are invited to mingle and celebrate one of the last weekend...