Cru is a bustling spot for contemporary dishes, sophisticated cocktails, and surprisingly satisfying bar snacks.
Sitting in the Scotia Plaza, this spacious Pencil-designed restaurant may largely be frequented by suits, but the vibe is more free-flowing than your usual stuffy Financial District affair.
Fourteen-foot-tall velveteen blue curtains open in the afternoon and obstruct the restaurant from outside view in the evening.
The corner of the 32-seater horseshoe bar is prime property, and perfect for big groups to convene over the extensive wine list, though seats in the sinking blue banquettes are still a win.
Cru offers a fair number of plant-based items, with separate menus for lunch, dinner, and a snack bar, which is offered all day. Everything from the sourdough bread to the desserts are made in-house.
A few items you can get consistently through the day include a special bowl of tuna tartare ($18).
Served with a bowl of taro chips, the tuna, which comes from Toronto staple Newport, arrives with a dollop of avocado ice cream and a sprinkling of nori.
A charcuterie board ($23) uses rotating cuts of meats from Jackson’s Meat that changes from day to day, served with bread and dijon mustard.
Offered on both the snack bar and dinner menus is a pair or trio ($16) of mini caviar doughnuts that are almost too cute to eat.
These savoury bites come with a creme fraiche glaze, radish, chives, and osietra caviar from Stokkebye, which comes from sturgeon.
The unexpected favourite from the bar is the fried chicken ($9), a delicious crispy chicken in a barbecue and maple sauce.
Juicy duck breast ($29) is dry aged for a few weeks, then served with a squash confit and pumpkin seed crumble.
For dessert, a Millionaire’s Tart is a decadent pile of hazelnut ice cream on a caramel tart, topped with 24 karat gold flakes.
The Regards Kyoto ($15) house cocktail is incredibly floral, using Soto sake, rice, mint and lavender.
The Feather & Board ($13) mixes Stalk & Barrel whiskey, lime, chamomile and ruby port for a deeper drink.