Friday, February 8, 2013

Origin Liberty

I've said it before and I'll say it again; it is really rare that my friends come by Liberty Village during the week to have lunch with me ('cause they all think Liberty Village is too far) so, before you all start calling me a liar (ha!) I assure you that it is pure coincidence that I have two back to back lunch posts of restaurants in Liberty Village (click here for yesterday's post on Mildred's Temple Kitchen). Yeah, I just want to make that clear. Oh and one more thing, like I said, since it is extremely rare that friends visit me for lunch, to honour them, I purposely included my two friends Chris and George in the picture above :)

Origin Liberty (Facebook: Origin Restaurant, Twitter: @OriginLiberty) is actually one of my favourite restaurants in Liberty Village. Ever since it took over Liberty Noodle's space at the Liberty Market Building a little more than six months ago, I've been to Origin Liberty for lunch and dinner numerous times. I've waited till now to blog about it because of two reasons: 1) other than this particular time, I'm usually at Origin Liberty for work lunches, which basically means no DSLR, and 2) Origin Liberty gets really, really dim during dinner time and you all *should* know by now that I never use flash photography. As a result, there has never been an Origin Liberty post on my blog until this very day. 

Claudio Aprile (@claudioaprile), chef and owner of restaurant group Orderfire (which encompasses Colborne Lane, the Origin empire OriginOrigin Liberty and soon to open Origin North) and design firm Stroudfoot (also located in Liberty Village) attributed the restaurant's design to what the building was during the Second World War: a female-run Bren gun factory. The spray-painted numbers on the concrete pillars and the custom-made red chandelier comprised of resin gun replicas are just a few of the many design elements at Origin Liberty that are inspired by the space's former use as a gun warehouse and factory.

Aside from what you see in these pictures, Origin Liberty also has a semi-private dining area called The Bren Room, which overlooks both the main dining room and the patio, as well as a large 55-seat patio that is open seasonally from April to September.

Origin Liberty's lunch menu is divided into snacks & sides, appetizers, sandwiches, mains and sweets.

The three of us shared the following:

Spicy spanish fries + chorizo + manchego ($12)

Deviled eggs + souffletine + herbs + smoked bacon ($6)

Crispy calamari + caramelized peanut sauce + pineapple ($15)

Chinois duck + flour tortilla + cucumber + hoisin + sriracha + sour cream ($17)

Pork belly chivito + caramelized onions + egg ($12)

You will definitely notice the international influences, specifically Asian and Latin American flavours, on Origin Liberty's menu. And I obviously embrace that fact because every time I'm at Origin Liberty I insist on ordering their spicy spanish fries, the deviled eggs and the chinois duck wraps. Sliced chorizo, olives, red peppers with dollops of chipotle aioli all piled high on fresh, crispy fries, and finally finished with manchego cheese dusted on top, these spanish fries are top notch. The deviled eggs are whimsical; the slight crunch from the souffletine makes it not only fun to eat, but serves to cut the creaminess of the yolk perfectly. The chinois duck wrap, with generous slices of juicy and meaty duck, is so tasty with sriracha, which is served in a separate bottle with the dish. Although not featured on this post, Origin Liberty's Japanese style tuna salad and the grilled chicken with black mole are also two other favourites of mine. In addition to what's on the regular menu, Origin Liberty also features a $9 daily lunch sandwich.

I'm pretty excited about Origin North, which is set to open some time in the spring at Bayview Village. Even though I live in Mississauga, I think it's about time that uptown gets some lovin' too!

Origin Liberty on Urbanspoon