When I walked in the little purple door on Queen Street East in Leslieville, I was surprised by how small Glas Wine Bar was, and our table was hardly in a large, spacious area. But, the lack of space is made up for with the food, the service and certainly the kindness and warmth of Dan Pantano, the owner, the chef and the all-around nice guy. I don’t know how he does it, but he said he shops for all of his ingredients himself, then he cooks it all plus somehow made time to talk to everyone, at every table – and it was busy. Actually, it was packed, and for great reason.
The menu has something for everyone, and ingredients are local and organic where Dan can get them. He mentioned that he buys from Farmers’ Markets, just like I do, so many of the ingredients are things I buy and enjoy myself.
I started off with a peppermint tea, perfect for a Sunday afternoon (and I have a bit of a cold). It was made with Majesteas Loose Leaf Tea (down the street from the restaurant), and I really liked how they tied the tea bag in a knot. I scanned the menu, and considered a few different things, but ultimately, I decided on the Potato Rosti with smoked salmon bits, a poached egg and a side of cucumber salad. When I saw it delivered to another table, it looked so good that I was inspired right away to order it! And, let me assure you that if you order this, you will be very happy about it – think of it as Eggs Benedict, but replace the English Muffin with a potato latke, and boy what a great item to hold the fish and poached egg! What the menu didn’t detail was that it came with a generous portion of house made honey mustard, and as someone who truly appreciates good mustard, it was awesmazing. The trick is, save some of the smoked salmon and drown it in the honey mustard, it’s the perfect grand finale to this brunch dish!
My mother usually eats vegan when out at restaurants, but was happy that they had a sheep’s milk yogurt parfait. It was layered with house made organic granola, roasted apples with rosemary, toasted pistachios and local honey. It was served in a wide glass and looked very cool and my mom really enjoyed it.
I had a great chat with Dan, who really made me feel good, and I hope I made him feel good too since I really enjoyed my meal. I am definitely going back for dinner, and I hope to be able to review it as well!
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