The Chase Restaurant occupies the street-level and top floor of one of Toronto’s financial district heritage buildings on Temperance Street, off Yonge Street, once the world’s longest street.
Come summer, its patio becomes one of the top draws in the city. The original idea of owners was to attract expense account managers from nearby Bay Street, the financial “capital” of the country.
The decor combines old brick with modern, sleek furnishings, all enhanced by an appealing cachet of discreet lane way entrance. The multilevel restaurant has several kitchens, one being a preparation facility, another the pastry shop and two on-line kitchens for final production and service. Menus are short, and feature local produce whenever possible.
During a recent visit, I ordered marinated octopus, roasted halibut with wild mushrooms and ganache dark chocolate cream, hazelnut and milk chocolate streusel. My fellow diner ordered braised short ribs, seared crusted tuna, and fruit with buffalo milk yoghurt.
The octopus was tough, but the plate presentation was appealing. The roasted halibut was well cooked, flaky, but mildly over salted, but the dessert was stale and with a though streusel not conducive to be eaten with a fork, the only cutlery provided! A knife would have been helpful.
The short rib was well prepared and flavorful, the tuna expertly cooked and nicely presented. Fruit with buffalo milk yoghurt was served with unripe strawberries.
Once would expect that at these prices ( lunch appetizers $ 11.00 to $ 12.00, main courses $ 30.00 plus, desserts $ 11.00 to $ 12.00) fruits served be ripe, impeccably cooked main courses imaginatively presented.
The wine list is short with more than five choices of wine by the glass. All wines are overpriced!
Overall, The Chase is a fine downtown Toronto seafood restaurant, catering to the executives of Bay Street banks and other financial institutions. On a previous occasion, in the street level restaurant, I was served oysters from the Atlantic- and Pacific Ocean coasts of Canada, sliced smoked Ontario sturgeon, shrimps, and several other well prepared delicacies. I was eager to try the fifth floor dining rooms.
The service was competent, fast and obliging, but we had to wait for a long time for the bill to be presented. Once asked it was presented quickly.
There is no parking, but the subway station (King Street) is a one-minute walk.
Reservations for weekdays (lunch) are recommended.
The restaurant is open for dinner six days a week.
Recommended, provided you are aware of slight shortcomings, which at these prices are inexcusable.