I made my way to Mildred's Temple Kitchen (Twitter: @mildredstemple, Facebook: Mildred's Temple Kitchen) several weeks ago for their newly launched dinner menu. Hidden in the heart of Liberty Village, the restaurant prides itself on serving flavourful dishes cooked simply and using the freshest locally-sourced ingredients whenever possible.
"Mildred’s Temple Kitchen opened with a heartfelt philosophy. We’re here because we love food, people and the simple pleasures of life: our temple is the place where we practice our devotion. Here you’ll ﬁnd seasonal fare, prepared with reverence for its source, and served with pleasure." - Mildred's Temple Kitchen.
Mildred's Temple Kitchen used to be my go-to place for lunch when I worked in the area, and I didn't realize just how much I miss the place until this very visit! That high ceiling, those beautiful floor-to-ceiling windows, the super spacious room, and the casual and relaxing ambiance...yeah, not many restaurants in Toronto can claim they have all these elements (actually a lot of restaurants these days are crammed, dark, and loud).
Mildred's open kitchen.
Complimentary Bel Star Prosecco to start the evening.
Mildred's Temple Kitchen's new menu is composed of shareable plates and is divided into four sections: "Vegetable Kingdom", "Land", "Water" and "Sweet Treats". Also on the menu is a $65 "Mildred's Feast" for two that gives you and your +1 an opportunity to taste various dishes from the menu. I chose to do a la carte:
MUSHROOM SKILLET ($14)
Roasted king oyster & cremini mushrooms, blistered grape tomatoes & kale tossed w/ black garlic vinaigrette, finished table side w/ pecorino
BROCCOLI FLORETS ($10)
Thai red chili, crushed peanuts, scallions, black sesame & soy caramel
GREEN TEA CURED TROUT ($14)
BUTTERMILK FRIED CHICKEN ($13)
Rhubarb gastrique, sour cream & hot sauce
CHIMICHURRI STEAK ($16)
Grilled 6oz flat iron w/ sautéed green beans, blistered grape tomatoes, tomato jam & grated egg
PAN SEARED STEELHEAD TROUT ($16)
Shaved fennel, smoked mushroom purée, parsley & preserved lemon vinaigrette
SEASONAL FRUIT CRUMBLE ($9)
Baked fresh w/ house made ice cream
GET YOUR HAND IN THE COOKIE JAR ($7)
Perfect for dunking, sharing or slipping into your purse, cookies baked daily by pastry chef Breanne
A very nice and well-rounded menu at Mildred's Temple Kitchen, any diner should be able to find something on the menu that appeals to his or her taste. I intentionally ordered plates from each of the four categories - "Vegetable Kingdom", "Land", "Water", and "Sweets" - and the dishes I enjoyed the most were from "Vegetable Kingdom" and "Water".
First off, the Mushroom Skillet and the Broccoli Florets were both excellent...if only all veggies taste this good! The Mushroom Skillet was actually my favourite of the night - served on a hot skillet, the combination of roasted mushrooms, blistered grape tomatoes and kale was absolutely fantastic. The dish was earthy, aromatic, and full of flavour, and the black garlic vinaigrette really brought all the ingredients together nicely (by the way, I'm currently loving anything black garlic). As for the Broccoli Florets, I really enjoyed the Asian flavours and the crunch from the peanuts. Overall, I'm thrilled that these veggies were served warm/hot instead of in a traditional cold salad and the fact that vegetables, in general, are finally given the limelight (instead of just served as a side, for example). Next, the Green Tea Cured Trout was really tasty - I liked how the saltiness of the lumpfish roe and the sweetness of the honeydew complimented one another, as well as the different textures from the cream cheese, cucumber and the crispy skin. All these elements enhanced the flavour of the cured trout when eaten in one bite (but maybe that's why I didn't taste much of the green tea cure). The Pan Seared Steelhead Trout was moist and nicely seared with a delectable crispy skin, but what stole the show for me was the lovely smoked mushroom puree (yep I love mushroom!) I didn't gravitate towards the Buttermilk Fried Chicken because I enjoy my fried chicken bone-in and with a thicker, crunchier skin (the one here is crispy and thinly battered) and even though the flavour of the chimichurri was spot-on, the flat-iron is not my favourite cut. The Seasonal Fruit Crumble consisted of rhubarb, house-made ice cream and crumble. This dessert kinda threw me off because the rhubarb looked more like celery so it made the whole thing look more like savoury than sweet. And although the flavours were good I thought the dessert was too watery and that it needed a punch of colour.
*This meal was complimentary. The opinions and views expressed on this post are my own*