Describing itself as a ‘Bento box of sensory pleasures’, how can you resist dining at Lee on King Street.
Set in an informal low lit dining room with red, silk screened walls and pink tables, we we’re a bit disappointed that we were relegated to the back of the restaurant to sit at the tiny tables behind the bar. An hour later, we were actually quite happy about this, as this place gets extremely noisy.
International Chef Susur Lee has devised small plates with modern Asian and French influences perfect for sharing. Of course we had to try the Singapore Slaw, Lee’s signature dish. It consists of 19 different ingredients including crispy taro, carrots, daikon, jicama, cucumber, tomatoes, crispy noodles, toasted brown hazelnuts, toasted sesame seeds, fried shallots, daikon sprouts, cilantro sprouts, opal basil, confetti mix, pickled ginger, scallions, pickled red onions, salted plum dressing, and pansies (yup that’s right, the flower).
We also tried the Carmelized Black Cod with Cantonese preserves, miso mustard, dim sum and turnip cake which was excellent. As well the Rack of Lamb Thailandaise with fried banana, coconut curry lentil, chili mint and carrot cardamom chutney. Again excellent, I’m drooling just thinking about it.
As for the cocktails, . With the website describing them as lush, tongue-tingling cocktails that blend tropical fruits, herbs and liqueurs, evoking perfumed and verdant landscapes, the far continents where Susur Lee has travelled. And for $18 a pop, I expected Lee to take me somewhere very far! I ordered the Lee Lemonade with ginger Lemonade, Tarragon, Chamomile Citrus Syrup, Lemon Zest, Belvedere Vodka, and fresh Grated Ginger. I’m not sure where is was supposed to take me, but it was good. But not that good to order another at that price.
The servers at Lee are knowledgeable and helpful and the food is superb. You can’t get in without a reservation, it’s pretty expensive, but honestly, it’s so worth it.
Lee 601 King Street West Toronto, ON M5V 1M5