Montecito

Montecito Restaurant at John and Adelaide in downtown Toronto has created a lot of buzz lately. Part of its fame is undoubtedly due to co-owner Ivan Reitman’s successful career as the director of blockbuster favorite “Ghostbusters”. And boy oh boy, the décor of the restaurant certainly would not let you forget that for a moment, from pictures of the foursome in the film to the multiple marshmallow man figurines that were placed in eye-catching spots, one would wonder why they did not just go ahead and name the place “Ghostbusters”.

The main reason why I decided to check the place out was because of its promotion, free corkage Wednesdays. Normally their corkage fee is $30, which I consider to be pricey. Funny thing is when I went back onto their website today, the promotion is gone, being replaced by Shake it Up Thursday (special priced martini, 1/2 price pizza) and Champagne Oysters Friday ($1 oyster, special priced champagne by the glass). By looking at their online wine list, again, in my opinion the mark-ups are quite steep (dare I say it is above the commonly acceptable norm of 250 to 300%). Nothing wrong with that, if diners are aware of such, and are still willing to spend the extra money on food and ambiance.

In terms of food, the menu items more resembled that of a bar than an actual restaurant, and I find the number of choices to be on the scarce side. A positive way to look at this is that it allows the kitchen more time to concentrate on food quality rather than quantity. In that regards, I will let diners be the judge of that……

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The Brasserie area of the establishment, nice, cozy and comfortable.

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$20 cheeseboard, with four types of cheese. Perhaps the lack of variety was because we requested specifically not to include blue cheese, so I will give them the benefit of the doubt.

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$25.95 Montagny 1er Cru we brought in. Given the crazy price tags associated to Burgundian wines nowadays, the not so popular Côte Chalonnaise seems to be a part of Burgundy that still produces semi-affordable wines.

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$18 Tagliatelle, cabbage, spicy pork sausage ~ For under $20, I must say I am quite impressed with the pasta. Upon one bite, one can immediately tell that this is from fresh hand-made pasta and not those which comes dry in a box.

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The second wine that we brought in was a $49.95 2010 Barolo. It hails from La Morra, which contains Tortonian soils that are similar to those found in Barbaresco. Barolos from the area are typically made in a less traditional style intended for early consumption. Even as such, I still found that after having a few glasses, the tannins got a bit stalky. Don’t get me wrong, this is a fabulous wine; however this is perhaps not the best time to uncork it.

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$3 for a scoop of ice cream or sorbet to end our meal. I order my favorite flavor, pistachio.

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Most recommended: Didn’t get to try enough to be able to make a recommendation.

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Suggestions for improvements:

 

1. Increase menu selections.
2. If lowering wine markups is unfeasible due to business reasons, at least have one night a week where corkage is either waived, or reduced.

Montecito Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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