Bravo Restaurant is a reliable option on Dundas West to get your fill of quality burgers, elevated bar snacks and fresh oysters.
John Chetti of Queen Margherita Pizza oversees the operation, though it's a complete offshoot with no parities to the pie place where he wants to try out great burgers made with quality meat.
The interior matches the concept, comforting but classy with marble accents and a chandelier that read a little cheesy, but bump up other elements like simple wood tables and a large, light-wood group table. There's additional seating at a long group table that's adjacent to the pass near the kitchen, with a chalkboard wall with cute sayings about burgers.
They have a selection of local craft beer a five dollar glass of house wine, or try a caesar ($12) garnished with double smoked bacon.
Chicken hush puppies ($9) are a play on chicken balls that bring the South and Chinese takeout together. Breaded with more complex cornmeal, they come with a sweet orange-cherry sauce that mimics the typical fluorescent red sauce chicken balls come with.
Smoked cheese in the mozzarella sticks ($8) really deepens the typical gooey stick of cheese, served with a habanero sour cream that adds a kick while cutting the richness of the mozzarella.
Salads here are big and hearty like the grilled caesar, which at $9 is a deal for monster grilled romaine hearts, sweet from being grilled and sharpened up with a heap of grated cheese. Hold the double smoked bacon for a filling vegetarian option.
We go for a special tonight of roasted oysters with worcestershire sauce, Cajun bread crumbs, and chives, creating a warm and savoury treat that has a delightfully salty seafood base in their daily fresh oysters ($18 if you order a dozen).
100% grain-fed Canadian beef is ground in-house for all their burgers, and buns are locally sourced. They do have a classic "first base" burger, but we try a Milano ($17) first, topped with smoked mozzarella, refreshing and slightly bitter rapini, meaty mushrooms, spicy roasted banana peppers, and rosemary aioli. The rapini and the cheese together are gooey and punchy.
These burgers are expensive, but coarsely ground and juicy beef make these some of the better burgers I've had in general. I like the Palmerston ($17) lives up to its name with highly premium ingredients, topped with rich brie and sweet fruity honey roasted figs rounded out by peppery crisp arugula along with pistachio, guanciale and a sweet tart balsamic aioli.
Photos by Hector Vasquez