Midday meal as modern art

Celebrity chef spins classics

Marc Thuet’s Summerhill experiment, Petite Thuet, dovetails seamlessly into the Rosedale neighbourhood — with its high-end breakfast pastries; lunches of boxed sandwiches, soup and salad; prepared dinner staples for reheating at home; and desserts.

A helpful server mans the glass cases. His thick French accent — France French, not Quebec French — adds authenticity to the ordering and shopping experience. The most worthy visual element of the wood-laden room are the mismatched shelves displaying all things pickled, geléed, jammed, and vinegared — imported 50-year aged balsamic vinegar or house-made pickled Ontario heirloom carrots, wild Quebec sumac and squashberry gelée or fig and port jam. Mental note: a good source of holiday gifts, albeit pricey, for the person who has everything.

Those who don’t mind spending a pretty penny on a breakfast snack line-up to splurge on a sumptuous café au lait and pastry: a buttery, moist croissant, say, or apple Danish. Fibre fans opt for granola with fruit and organic yogourt.

The menu’s soups entice —onion soup, curry sweet potato, and Jerusalem artichoke — but stocks have been depleted.

Roasted cauliflower salad ($4) is a standout. This textural knockout combines crunchy toasted almond slivers, matchstick dried apricot pieces, chewy raisins, crisp romaine lettuce and soft, wee cauliflower florets roasted to perfection. A mild buttermilk [CK] dressing brings flavours together.

Even though it’s just minutes after noon, less than a dozen sandwiches remain: today, three assemblies to choose from.

Pretzel roll, akin to a saltier, shorter, rounder baguette, sandwiches crunchy chopped romaine, moist organic turkey and thin slabs of cool brie ($7.95).

The roll also envelops a spread of lobster salad ($9), but this time, the pretzel is decidedly more yielding and more fresh than the one cozying up around the turkey. Shredded Nova Scotia lobster and crab dominate the generous spread, pulled together with a spiced mayo that complements, not dominates, the flavours of the crustaceans.

A packaged charcuterie offers six distinct flavours in one: prosciuttini, Rose de Lyon, saucisson sec, saucisson Alsacien, Hungarian salami and chorizo. Ideal for those carnivores among us who just can’t decide.

Creative dinners, like venison lasagna and truffled chicken wings, are rounded out by daily specials. All cater to one theme: comfort food made from high-end ingredients in thoughtful combinations that can be heated and served from your kitchen.

Macaroon maniacs trek from far and wide to sink their teeth into Thuet’s inventions ($1.95), in a respectable array of flavours, such as caramel or coconut. Two thin, almond “cookies” sandwich a thin spread of sweet ganache, and in each one the thinnest of outer layers gives way to soft, light brownie-like interior. The perfect finish.


Petite Thuet
1162 Yonge St.
Lunch for two excluding tax, tip and alcohol:

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