It was a nice Saturday night. Spent some time at home in the early evening. For some reasons, I was quite tired and felt like chillin… or even lying in bed. Marz Marz Marz; so not energetic gal. Got a call from A, then JW and she picked me up @ 7:30pm and headed south to this Italian restaurant, Alize. I think I’ve heard of this name a few years ago… A few years ago when I first tried Grazie. Looking at Alize’s website (before they finished redesigning it), it looked like a family restaurant.
Eight pm sharp, we were there. Standing by the entrance… hum… I wondered where we were going to sit ’cause it seemed to be a fullhouse except there was a reserved area for a group of 8. 8:15, 8:20… There was still no table for us although we had a reservation for 8pm. The dining place was relatively small… it could seat about 40-50 people. However, it seemed to be a busy Saturday night for them. I could smell the discomfort from the young server there. Standing there and staring at people’s food wasn’t very pleasant, but we decided to wait instead of going to another place and having to wait again.
Around 8:45pm, finally… we got our table near the entrance. The decor and atmosphere of this place was a bit different from my imagination. According to JW, the decor was all done by the owner. As you might be able to see from the second picture (wasn’t very good quality since it was quite dark inside), there’s a painting… of the two hands from the Creation of Adam. I wondered if it was also painted by the owner.
Seated. We were presented with a two-page menu. Appetizers, salads, pastas, “Alize’s famous homemade revioli”, various entrees and pizzas. After we placed our order, the server came and placed the Bruschetta on our table. Humm… we all looked at the server coz we didn’t order that. He said it was on the house because we had a long wait. (That was a nice move.) The Bruschetta was not bad. Bruschetta is a very common starter, but some places can make a very appetizing one. I kinda thought of the one that I had @ Jardin Nelson in Montreal last year. I think I prefer the Bruschetta to be a bit more crispy. Then, the bread came… Oh. I gotta say their bread was really soft. I could just eat the bread with the olive oil + balsamic vinegar alone! Well, I did eat a lot of bread… couldn’t resist even though I knew I still had an entree coming up.
After that… the anti-pasta came… with assorted cheese, prosciutto, grilled Italian sausage and grilled vegetables. Although it was supposed to be for 2 persons, I found it good for 3 persons since we were ordering quite a lot of dishes. I liked it. I always like “assorted” stuffs – variations, never get bored. JW also ordered the escargots although it wasn’t on the menu. It was fresh and the texture was much better than the one you get at buffets.
For entrees, we ordered:
1. Linguini con Fruti di Mare (scallops, grilled tiger shrimp and mussels in a tomato herb sauce) – It was delicious! The sauce was just right. A fork of linguini covered with tomato sauce + a piece of shrimp was really satisfying.
2. Lamb shank Provencale (braised and stewed in a provencale sauce) – I like lamb, but found this one a bit too salty. Was that because they wanted to cover/get rid of the special taste of lamb?
3. Since it’s called “Alize’s famous homemade ravioli”, how could I not order it? So, I got the Ravioli Filetti di Pollo (spinach ravioli in pesto tomato sauce with grilled chicken breast topped with crumbled goat cheese and sun-dried tomatoes) – It was really good! Yes, I can understand why their ravioli can be famous. The wrap was not too thick nor too soft. I loved the sun-dried tomatoes and the creamy goat cheese – they go really well with the ravioli. However, the grilled chicken breast was too dry.
After all the breads, bruschetta and entrees, we were quite full. (I think I was about 85-90% full). Since JW highly recommended the Tiramisu, and there were 2 gals, we ordered 2 desserts.
1. Baileys chocolate cheesecake (cheesecake of the night) – I could taste the Baileys in the top layer of dark chocolate. Although the taste was really rich, I liked it. The cheesecake was really filling. Overall, the cheesecake was ok.
2. Tiramisu – very good! Light and airy. Thanks J for the reco! I loved it. HUMMMM
At the end, we also ordered a cup of latte and a pot of Jasmine green tea. Not sure if they were good coz I didn’t take a sip.
It was a great night although we had to wait for over half an hour. I think they should take their reservations more seriously. If people have to wait for over half an hour, what’s the point of making a reservation? Towards the end, we were one of the last 3 tables there. Finally, we could chill and hear the background music. That was the best moment of the night. I had a great time – thanks J and A!
The total bill came to about $110 before gratuity.
FYI: Alize Restaurant
2459 Yonge Street (at Erskine Ave.), Toronto
Delivery & Catering: 416-487-4449