Do not adjust your screens. I know I already wrote a preview of The Grove back in November when I attended a pop-up dinner in conjunction with First Drop Canada. At that point, owners Fritz Wahl, Richard Reyes and Chef Ben Heaton were expecting their Dundas Street restaurant to be ready to go before Christmas. As is the case in the restaurant industry, there were a few delays, and when I attended the real sneak preview pop-up dinner last Friday (also hosted by First Drop Canada, and with proceeds going to Greenest City), they were still awaiting their liquor license.
The good news is that everything else is done and that they’ll be holding their grand opening party this Saturday, March 10th from 6pm onwards. The other good news is that, unlike the previous dinner where Heaton was cooking in a makeshift kitchen in a woodshop, this time he was getting a chance to try out his own custom-built space.
I’ve gone on record as saying that I don’t like foie gras. That was before I had the foie gras as prepared by Chef Patrick Lin at Senses.
Working on the “try it ten times” theory as espoused by Vogue food writer Jeffrey Steingarten, I continue to try foods that I’ve had bad experiences with in the hope that I’ll eventually learn to at least like them, if not love them. After trying the duo of foie gras on Senses new menu, consider me a convert. Chef Lin’s technique of offering the tasty liver both pan-seared and poached in Peking duck consommé is a testament to both an exquisite ingredient and his skill and creativity behind the stove.
A renovation of the space now sees the comfortably modern lounge graced with generous sofas and a reworked restaurant with better flow and ambiance due to the removal of a couple of seats and the addition of the wine wall that breaks up the space without breaking up the light. With warm wood floors, and a palette of chocolate, cream and gold, the space is relaxed and welcoming.