It was a hot summers eve when Jonathan and I strolled up Ossington Ave. I moved to Toronto’s West End in the Fall of 2010 and during that first year we enjoyed many-a-night sipping along Ossy.
Moments before I pulled back the door to dinner we both realized we were about to embark on a feast at one of Ossington’s most memorable hipster haunts. I remember one sweaty summer night dancing until the wee hours of the morning at Baby Huey to La Roux’s Bulletproof (it was so “right now” back then).
Ossington’s restaurant scene is a perfect example of Toronto’s fast paced evolution. We both expressed a fondness for the good times enjoyed on the dance floor here while running our finger down the menu at recently launched Té Restaurant which now calls the space home sweet home.
Owners Grace Cho (Korean) and Tina Lai (Taiwanese) sought to serve up the traditional flavours they eat at home while putting a creative spin on popular North American comfort foods. Named after the Spanish word for tea, Té offers Asian fusion share plates in the style of tapas while both the cocktail and dessert menu pay homage to their tea theme, offering two bubble tea cocktails and desserts infused with loose leaf.
The duo hired Navigate Design to come up with the interior concept and Build it By Design oversaw the overall execution and custom millwork. Both owners wanted to create a space that could easily transition between weekend brunch to dinner and late night. Highlights include a bubbly jewel toned bar and brass accents throughout. We dined in the best seat in the house, a banquette encircling a round marble table against the front window facing Ossington. Be sure to request the spot when you make your reservation it’s perfect for over your shoulder people watching.
Té is the perfect spot to grab a light bite and quench your thirst on cocktails before heading to a show at the Lower Ossington Theatre or as a break between a West End vintage shopping binge. Highlights include a bubble tea inspired chai tea cocktail, selection of classic ssam and spicy tteokbokki.
The Chai Milk Te | vodka, amaretto, vanilla chai tea, cream, cinnamon stick, tapioca pearls
Toasted Kimchi Ravioli | panko crusted ravioli, kimchi ricotta, honeyed wasabi pesto
Unadulterated Ssam | red lettuce leaf wrap, pickled winter radish, garlic, sweet red chili paste, grilled pork belly
Pizza Tteokbokki | steamed rice balls, garlic, onion, bell pepper, sweet chili tomato, mozzarella
Dark-Spiced Taiwanese Fried Chicken | deep fried with taiwanese spices