Tuesday, May 12, 2015

The Chase: Haute Seafood on Temperance

Perched on the penthouse floor of a 1897 heritage building on Temperance Street accessed only by private elevator, The Chase is the flagship restaurant of Chase Hospitality Group, founded by Steven Salm and Michael Kimel. The Chase has become the hot spot for many socialites and Bay street professionals as the place to be seen, and to enjoy drinks, fine dining and panoramic city views. The handsomely refurbished 19th-century Dineen building penthouse oozes casual elegance with white crown molding, crystal chandeliers and fabrics designed by Ralph Lauren. The design uses a mix of traditional and contemporary elements in a light colour palette, instead of the traditional dark, to create a feeling of laid-back luxury. The space is divided into four separate areas: a 75-seat rooftop terrace, a corridor-shaped wine bar and a two cozy dining rooms with both aubergine and dove grey tufted banquettes and views of Lake Ontario. 

Heading up the kitchen is Michael Steh, previously of Reds and Splendido, who's menu at Chase is defined by small plates with big flavours. The service is relaxed, attentive and utterly faultless. A 300-long international wine list by sommelier Anton Potvin is extensive and focused on Old World producers, but does feature a selection of by-the-glass options. Celebrating my brothers birthday and recent engagement, The Chase was outstanding from start to finish, due in no small part to our excellent server who made our special evening a night to remember.

The Chase dinner menu

Our wonderful server for the evening sent over complimentary glasses of Sparking Rosé to celebrate my brother's birthday

Being a Friday night, a Hendricks Martini's seemed like the perfect way to launch the evening 

A Grey Goose Vodka Martini with olives

A loaf of fabulous complimentary rhubarb-butter-glazed focaccia arrived at the table with a recipe card so guests can make it at home!

An amuse-bouche from the chef

Avocado stuffed with shrimp & red curry and served with daikon pickle, peanut, kaffir lime and coconut

Octopus roasted & tossed in salsa verde, with piquillo peppers, harissa, merguez sausage & olives

Madai & Tuna thinly sliced & marinated in fresh lime, with ataulfo mango, corn crumb & roasted chili oil

Beef Tartare with horseradish, quail egg, salsa verde & toasted sourdough

The Beef Tartare is mixed together at the table

Sourdough toasts

A lovely bottle of Viognier was perfect with the fish and seafood-centric menu

Black Cod marinated in capers & fresh lemon, served with fregola pasta, & smoked paprika fumet

Tuna crusted in fresh herbs, served with raw artichoke salad & saffron almond sauce

Arctic Char pan roasted with kale, jerusalem artichoke purée & pickled heirloom carrots

Pecorino & Truffle Frites served with herb aioli

Brussels Sprouts with lemon bread crumbs & bacon

Spinach Cavatelli with mushrooms, white veal bolognese & parmesan

The Chase dessert menu

Dessert is served!

Apple Tarte Tatin made with honey crisp apples, caramelized puff pastry, calvados cream and vanilla ice cream

Lime Curd Layered Angel Food Cake with coconut cream and marshmallow icing

Makes 2 loaves

The night before:
100ml cool water
100 grams unbleached all-purpose flour
1/16 tsp instant yeast

Whisk the ingredients together in a medium bowl and cover. Allow the mixture to ferment at room temperature for 12-15 hours.

The next morning:
220 grams unbleached all purpose flour
140 ml warm water
3/8 tsp instant yeast
7 gram salt

Mix the flour with the instant yeast. Combine with all the other ingredients and knead to form a smooth dough. Cover the dough, and let rise in a warm place until the dough doubles in size. Divide the dough into two pieces. Press each piece into a flat pan, pressing the dough into a loosely even layer. Brush with a tablespoon of olive oil and cover each pan, storing them in a warm place, allowing them to double in size again. Preheat the oven to 450°F. Sprinkle the dough with coarse salt and bake for 15-25 minutes.

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