A drool-worthy French restaurant just opened in Toronto

A new spot for contemporary French food just opened in Toronto’s Harbord Village. Offering an inventive approach to classic French cuisine, the bistro named Parquet, located at 97 Harbord St., opened its doors on December 2.

A collaboration between two-long time friends and lawyers, Daniel Bernstein and Matt Cohen, the restaurant celebrates the duo’s passion for creative French dishes and warm, engaging service.

“Matt and I come from a law background but have always had a deep passion for food and hospitality — we are not your typical restaurateurs,” said co-owner Bernstein. “But we’ve been fortunate to join forces with our favourite chef, sommelier and design firm — with some crucial tips from Woodlot’s Davide Haman — to create a new neighbourhood destination.”

That “favourite chef” just happens to be Jeremy Dennis (of Burdock, Chantecler). Joining him in the role of maître d’ and sommelier is  Lexi Wolkowski (of Brothers and Bar Raval).

The menu reflects chef Dennis’s 15 years of experience in some of the city’s best restaurants and his years spent working at Michelin-starred restaurants in Europe including London’s L’enclume and Kadeau in Denmark.

Reimagining French classics while respecting traditions, Dennis’s focus is on using the best local produce and creating cuisine that people want to eat. Standout dishes include Digby scallop cru ($27) made with Nova Scotia scallops in Peruvian tiger’s milk and topped with thinly sliced peppers, as well as iconic French classics like steak tartare ($21), gruyere tartine ($14) and dry-aged steak frites ($44-$79).

Steak tartare/Photo: Phil Babcock

The menu also features imaginative interpretations like glazed maitake mushrooms in Calvados with wild rice and black walnut compound butter ($38) and sablefish served with brussel sprouts and hazelnuts ($38).

Gruyere tartine/Photo: Phil Babcock

The wine program includes both old world classics as well as new offerings, mostly French, while nine cocktails round out the drinks menu including the zero-proof Light Up Gold ($12) with seedlip 94, chamomile and pineapple.

Parquet seats 50 guests indoors, with seating for an additional 50 on the patio and is open from Tuesday through Saturday from 5 p.m. to 11 p.m.

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