A few weeks ago, an old co-worker and I got together at Bent for their Bent-O Seafood tasting menu. Bent is the brainchild of famous Toronto chef, Susur Lee who is well known for his Asian fusion menus. I’m usually not a huge fan of Asian fusion but a few girlfriends and I treated ourselves to the tasting menu at Lee a few months ago and it was mind blowing. I couldn’t pass up the chance to experience another Susur tasting menu – at a fraction of the cost to boot!
The entire tasting menu was $35 for two if you came before 7pm. Unlike a traditional tasting all the dishes came out all at once. I could have easily had an entire tasting to myself – but I didn’t want to be a total fatty. Our server did suggested ordering one or two extra dishes to supplement our meal. To be honest, nothing else on the menu looked appealing and the portions were pretty tiny. I managed to talk my dining partner into running across the road to Porchetta & Co. afterwards for a sandwich instead. Am I a genius or what?! I know, my friendship – you want it.
Anyways, here’s what we had:
Lime Coconut Curry Shrimp Soup – tomato, corn, squash, crispy puff rice – amazing ‘punch-in-the-face’ flavour! Definitely a great start to the meal. We both loved the bold flavour and texture combination of the puffy rice and sweet corn niblets.
Spicy Peruvian Style Ceviche – white snapper clams, mussels, calamari, Aji Amarillo chill, fresh lime juice & Pressed Octopus – lentil, tomato, black garlic, perilla, herbed olive oil, pomegranate vinaigrette.
Tuna + Watermelon Ceviche – shaved red onion, cilantro, crispy shallots, fresh citrus juice, chili, Chinese donut fritter. I loved the combination of sweet watermelon and raw tuna. I felt like I was taking a big bite outta summer.
Asian Style Atlantic Salmon Gravlax – Japanese Omlette horseradish, lemon chive creme. This was so F$%^ weird. All the flavours were familiar – but not all enjoyable.
Lobster Tacos – charred onion tomato salsa, chipotle, avocado in taro shell. Oyster Sake Shot – lemongrass, shallots, ponzu marinated salmon roe. The Oyster Shot was the worst. It was gritty and tasted like they took the broth right out of Lake Ontario.
Bent doesn’t have a dessert menu. Instead everyone gets a ‘Chef’s choice’ complimentary dessert. The words complimentayr & dessert should ALWAYS, always go hand in hand. The Mango tapioca was the perfect ending to the entire meal. It was just sweet enough and the perfect pallet cleanser. The other bannana bread business I could do with out. I found the chocolate too bitter.
I also ordered a glass of wine – which ended up costing more than my dinner! I thought it was a great value but unfortunately the Seafood Tasting Menu only ran for a few weeks. I’ll definitely be keeping an eye on Bent for any future special menu promotions.
777 Dundas West