Eat: Bannock

If you’ve dine in and around Toronto, then you’d be familiar with the many restaurants under Oliver & Bonacini’s restaurant group. Having eaten at and loved most of the restaurants under their portfolio, there was one restaurant I was willing to pass on trying until I learned they serve Sunday Brunch.

Bannock is nestled on the main floor of Canada’s iconic department store, The Bay (now, Hudson’s Bay), making it a convenient spot for hungry shoppers and tourists. I tend not to eat around shopping malls, due to lack of variety and options are most relegated to the food court.

The place is separated into two sections: one side is a grab-and-go take out area/coffee shop by day; cocktail lounge by night. the other side is a dine-in restaurant, cooking up traditional Canadian comfort food.

Being Canadian, I was intrigued to find out what O&B considers “Canadian comfort food”, aside from poutine. To be quite honest, poutine is the only thing I think of when I’m conjuring up what is distinctly Canadian food. That and maybe maple syrup. Game meat? Mac and cheese? Being polite?

I dropped by on a Sunday with my brother for their Sunday Brunch, it was a bit crowded, but possible to accommodate for two.

I ordered the smoked and scrambled, which is slices of smoked salmon, soft scrambled eggs and mustard green served on a piece of bannock.

I quietly asked my brother what a bannock was, but of course neither of us knew and I was too embarrassed to asked the server what a bannock is, especially if it’s on the name of the restaurant.

Bannock is in fact, a flat bread whose recipe can be traced back to Native Canadians, or even the indigenous people in North America (can you trust Wikipedia?). I don’t think you will find any aboriginal-inspired dishes at Bannock, but having the bread integrated into their menu is a nice touch to the historical and cultural foundation of Canada.

Duck poutine pizza? Canadian comfort food indeed…

401 Bay St.
Toronto, ON
M5H 2Y4



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