The third and last on the Winterlicious list is La Maquette, a French restaurant renowned for being the Most Romantic restaurant in the city, with the best ambiance, service, and food. It is located in a heritage designated site overlooking the St. James Cathedral and the Toronto Sculpture Garden, which definitely warrants the accolades of being a romantic and ambient restaurant.
Now, I must admit that I did look at reviews prior to attending the reservation and there were numerous misses about the food and service. Learning from the experience at Cafe Boulud, I went in with no high expectations despite the restaurant being recognized as having the best service and food.
Our group of 5 was seated upstairs in their main room. They have a beautiful solarium with large windows, which contributes to the romantic element of the restaurant. I wished we sat in the solarium; especially when our table was just outside the solarium but perhaps it would have been a potential third-wheel situation (it wasn’t).
I apologize for the photos as I had to use flash in some of them, thereby unleashing my inner Martha Stewart.
For the appetizer, I ordered the Red Radicchio filled with Baby Organic Arugula dressed in a raspberry vinaigrette. Sounds fancy on paper, but what I actually got is a plate of four radicchio leaves underneath a pile of arugula with three whole raspberry on the side. Disappointment.
Hoping the main course of two 3oz Lobster tails in chive lemon butter sauce served with quinoa, roasted corn, red bell pepper and mini vegetables can redeem the mediocre appetizer, it kind of doesn’t. While it was evident some revisions were made to the dish, the quinoa was mushy and even when it was drenched in the butter sauce, it was tasteless, which means the sauce itself is tasteless. On the other hand, the lobster tails were slightly overcooked. The best part of the course was the vegetables. Disappointment.
Service-wise, it was a little slow but it not terrible like what others have stated. I was very disappointed in the food, I felt as though effort was more on the presentation (or lack of in a way) and less on flavour. Sorry La Maquette, based on that, I don’t think I’d be back.
111 King St. E.