Modus Ristorante

Voted top 10 restaurants in Toronto by Toronto Life and Globe and Mail newspaper.

Modus Ristorante, a new restaurant in the Financial District, might serve Italian food, but refreshingly, no one’s anxious to label it “rustic.” Behind Modus is Sam Genkov, owner of the 19-year-old District favourite Bravi Ristorante.

No stranger to high-end Italian cuisine Sam Genkov reimages recognizable Italian classics as fine-dining creations. Starters include carpaccio of veal or swordfish, as well as a buffalo mozzarella pomodoro salad. Pastas, most of which are made in house, include butternut squash ravioli with braised duck and shaved black truffle and spaghettini with mozzarella-stuffed prime beef meatballs. For secondi, there’s osso buco with parmesan polenta and a handful of seafood dishes like baked halibut and pan-roasted pickerel. The long dessert menu features classics like gelato, rum and ricotta fritters or exclusive Italian cheeses.

Behind the restaurant’s 300-bottle wine program is sommelier Ruben Elmer of Profile Wine Group. The list offers 10 reds and eight or nine whites by the glass, with a heavy focus on Italian, Californian, and South American wines.

If the space feels familiarly “Financial District,” it’s because the design is the work of Mackay Wong Strategic Design. Rich golds, textured wallpaper and giant chandeliers create subtly elegant space. At the front, there’s a large bar and lounge area to accommodate the 5p.m. rush of schmoozing suits. At the back is the showpiece kitchen — on display for guests as well as passersby on York Street — and the elevated chef’s table, where groups of up to twelve can sit and watch the chef at work. The restaurant offers 2 fully private dining rooms with full AV. The small seats 25, the large seats 55 and combined seats 75.


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