Sunday, June 12, 2016

Le Baratin

Last week, I visited a quaint little restaurant on the west end serving up authentic French cuisine, which includes delicious house-made duck rilette.

The above photo showcases one of the most delicious charcuterie boards I've ever had. With house-made duck rilette and pâté, with proscuitto and salami, and delicious toast, I don't think I've had anything like it before. Every single bite was delicious! Where can you find this? Le Baratin.

Le Baratin (@lebaratinyyz) is a newly open French bistro located on Dundas West. It was previously a cute little cafe called Bivy, until the owner decided to re-brand the spot to serve casual French cuisine. I had the pleasure of meeting the owner, Pascal, and the head chef, Chef Jean, during my visit at Le Baratin. Just from talking to them both, I can tell how passionate they are about the French cuisine and this new venture.

I actually lived in Paris for four months and loved eating around Paris. So you can believe my expectations when walking into Le Baratin was that I would be eating escargot, foie gras, etc. But I was surprised to find that Le Baratin focused on serving traditional French cuisine that you could enjoy in the comfort of your own home. As I've never experienced that before, I get why my expectations were different, and I'm glad I got to experience this side of the French cuisine!

One of the goals at Le Baratin is that they want their customers to feel right at home, and I'd have to say they succeeded. The space is nice and cozy, with an open concept kitchen and a bar at the back. We started off with two cocktails: one that was like a whiskey sour and the other like a daiquiri. Unfortunately, I was unable to remember the exact description of the cocktails! And even more unfortunately, actually no... I mean fortunately, the bartender/waitress actually decided to whip something up for us :) I feel like those drinks are some of the best to have!

Onto the food, we ordered two appetizers to start, two mains to try, and finished off with two of their sweet desserts.

Starting off, we ordered the charcuterie platter as mentioned above. Did you know that the slang for 'charcuterie' in France is 'charcutaille'? This was definitely one of the yummiest platters, and we both polished it off no problem. We also ordered the gravlax platter, because I absolutely love anything smoked salmon. At Le Baratin, they cure their own salmon and I'm happy they do because it is delicious! I will definitely re-order these two platters the next time I come.

For our mains, we decided to go with two hearty meats: lamb and duck.
The Souris D'Agneau Grand-Mère is a 5hrs braised lamb shank with rosemary & red wine sauce, served with confit white kidney beans in tomato sauce. The lamb was so tender and the sauce was so rich. I kept saying 'omg' each time I flaked off a bit more meat with my fork. The Confit de Canard is a duck leg with roasted potatoes and a green peppercorn wine sauce. This dish was also a favourite. The duck meat was very juicy, and the skin was SO good and crispy.

For dessert, we decided to go with the Tarte Tatin and Mousse au Chocolate. The tarte tatin, for those who don't know (dw, I didn't either), is basically caramelized apples on top of a puff pastry. It reminded me of an inverted apple pie (sorta..) but I really liked it. I loved the puff pastry texture with the rich, dense caramelized apples. The mousse au chocolate was very rich in chocolate, and definitely something you should save room in your stomach for - even though I am a firm believer that you have a separate stomach for desserts hehe.

Although you may think that Le Baratin very west, it is definitely worth the trek. They are open in the mornings and brunch 7 days a week, and open for dinner on Tuesday to Saturday.

In addition, they're also part of the Indie Coffee Passport! I would suggest spending a day on the weekend on the west end - grab a coffee and stay a while. I hope to do that this summer as well. Maybe I'll see you there ;)

*This meal was complimentary, however, please note that all my opinions made are my own.*

Le Baratin Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato
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