A pop-up not
Warning: Figures is not a pop-up shop, despite signs pointing to the contrary. A visual cacophony emerges behind the glass windows of the Avenue Road space: walls are papered with pages of graphic novels; a giant Mickey Mouse perches in a corner, and limited edition figurines decorate shelves. But press the big red button, and a hidden door opens to reveal the lounge-y restaurant beyond.
“This venue is unexpected; it’s very artsy,” says Patrick Marzouk. Following great Mississauga success with &Company, Patrick and his brother Nader swooped into the T.O. dining scene. “We said, ‘What is Toronto missing?’ ” Nader says. The big city allowed for more artistic licence than in the ’Sauga, and with their magic formula in hand, they opened Figures earlier this year. Since then, it’s been a celeb draw, with patrons including Jonathan Cheban (Kim K’s bestie).
Inky black sips
The drinks menu is split into two sections: classics and house cocktails, with each libation possessing a cartoon hero or villain motif.
Our pick is the villainous Maleficent ($19). Using the Angelina Jolie flick as inspiration, this inky black concoction conjures up revenge in a glass. “It’s the cocktail manifestation of the character,” Nader says. J.P. Wiser’s double still rye is paired with some peaty Bruichladdich scotch for an intense base. The addition of pineapple and lime juices and cashew orgeat adds tiki flavours, and activated charcoal gives it colour. The tropical tipple arrives tableside with a flaming sugar cube, packing a wicked wallop.
Figures, 137 Avenue Rd., 416-900-1022