“You spin me round…baby!” En route to downtown Toronto, I knew the exact upscale destination to celebrate a momentous evening. Among the city’s innumerable fine-dining establishments, I was in pursuit of an unconventional experience; someplace ‘different’ that also included a tantalizing gourmet menu, and a room revealing of an unforgettable illuminated skyline. Given an epicurean’s glass is always full – of pleasure – clearly, I wasn’t asking for too much.
Consciously deciding to break with habit – forgoing typical ground-level eating – I made my way to one of the tallest free-standing buildings in the world, the CN Tower. Standing erect, at 1151 feet, this modern architectural wonder inarguably boasts an impressionable exterior. Fixated on the revolving pod, however, I had my sights on another engineered structure – a scenic meal, at 360 Restaurant.
Acrophobe or not, there are only two means of “moving up” within this high-rise. Choice is yours, climb 1776 steps or take a 58-second elevator ride. Luckily, unaffected by vertigo, boarding one of six operating glass elevators was the appropriate decision to heed. Time is money, after all, and at 22km/hour this vertical trip certainly guarantees a timely arrival, and peak return on investment – one risk worth taking for a scrumptious reward.
Eyes wide open, I stepped into the elevator and was ready to be lifted – up and away! Saying ‘adieu’ to pedestrians, canvassing the city streets below, these moving figures quickly turned into tiny specs to later diminish from view altogether; and, all in less than a minute’s time. To sum up, this ride was over before it began! “Hakuna matata,” nonetheless, as transporting infinitely beyond – my usual boundaries – directed me to an out-of-this-world ‘vining’ and dining venue.
Picture this: soft candlelit indoor ambience, a panoramic view of T.O.’s skyscrapers, and astute servers patiently waiting to seat, treat, and indulge your every beck and call. Gourmand novices rejoice – you’re home! In this revolving bubble, the sky’s the limit when it comes to spoiling your love of executively prepared cuisine and a vast selection of bottled fermented grapes. Rightly understood, there’s indeed an on-locale humidified cellar that houses thousands of aged wines.
Beautiful sights studied and absorbed, I was set for my close-up – a three-course meal. To start, my olive garden appetizer consisted of sliced freshly hand-stretched buffalo mozzarella, sautéed rapini and earthy wild mushrooms, tomatoes, and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar reduction; a polychromatic burst of sweet, tart, salty, slightly bitter and creamy components. Already covering several flavour profiles, my second plate was apparent of a richly satisfying feast. In this case, plating more – in hearty texture and taste – does result in an absolute ‘merrier’ patron. In subsequent presentation, glazed Cornish game hen served with tenderly crisp ‘haricots verts,’ and a sweet bed of starch tubers reinforced an exuberating inner-sensation – royal treatment for a day!
The procession of monarch eats, thus far, only left me welcoming the glorified crown finale – enrobed dark chocolate mousse. Exclusively decadent and adorned with touches of seasonal fresh berries, this towering dessert was cater-made – a custom-designed ending – to stand over the ‘crème river Anglaise,’ where raspberry coulis strategically rules the waves. Fit for a queen or a queen of – artichoke – hearts, high-times do call for high-measures as seen and lived in this ‘elevated’ dining experience.
Copyright © DISHFUL, 2013.