By Annabelle Goodman –Via Norte 938 College St 647 348 1116
I feel as if I just had the best double date possible. Gabriel is the host and manager of this incredible Portuguese Restaurant. He is gallant and charming making sure that each guest is totally satisfied. Jose is in the kitchen creating his gourmet delectable food. What more could anyone want?
I was meeting with a friend I hadn’t seen for a long time and we were happy to have time to get together. When I suggested this restaurant she told me her favorite food is Portuguese Grilled Sardines. My favorite food is Grilled Tuna Steak. We both were so excited and delighted to have good company while enjoying our favorite food.
The Portuguese bread is the finest quality. A bottle of extra virgin oil and another with fine quality balsamic vinegar was placed on every table. House cured black olives will make you happy before your meal is served.
Via Norte is a newly opened restaurant. It is the home of the former Cataplana Restaurant. The décor is completely redone. I love the new atmosphere. This is a large restaurant but there is a warm atmosphere. The light colored walls and the pictures give it a homey feeling. There are areas for large group diners. Intimate dining is also possible. This restaurant has it all.
My dining companion ordered the Grilled Sardines as an appetizer.($7.95) The plate was so generous in size she had to cancel her main course. My friend claims they were the best. They were served with onion confit, sweet peppers, mushrooms and zucchini.
I didn’t even read the menu. When I heard tuna was the fresh fish of the day I was delighted. This was the best tuna I have tasted. ($25.00) Two large thick tuna steaks were flavored to perfection. It was charred on the outside and succulent and tasty inside. The fresh green beans and asparagus were also enjoyed. A slice of potato and sweet potato were part of the creative plating. This was an enormous portion but I ate it all with great pleasure because it was so delicious. I am still salivating with fond memories a day later.
Later I looked at the menu to see what else I might have ordered. I always enjoy Linguini With Sauteed Black Tiger Shrimp tossed with rapini and sun blushed tomatoes, aglio and olio.($20.00) I think that will be my choice for next time.
Grilled Herb Crusted Salmon is served with freshly prepared vegetables, roasted potatoes and fruit chutney.($20.00)
Grilled Norwegian Salted cod is a classic dish offered with potatoes, garlic, caramelized onions and rapini.($22.00).
Grilled Tiger Shrimp and Sea Scallops are served with rice pilaf, vermouth and saffron.($29.00)
Pan Seared Breast of Muscovy Duck is served with wild rice with cranberries and a port wine sauce.($24.00)
Grilled Australian Lamb Chops are presented with oven baked sweet potatoes, tomatoes, onions, and reduction of Touriga Nacional and rosemary.($28.00)
Gabriel presented every plate with a smile. Jose performs his magic in the kitchen with creativity and a masterful talent.
The menu is extensive and offers a great variety of dishes. I highly recommend Via Norte.