No. 5: Edulis
IN THE APPROACH FROM THE STREET, EDULIS APPEARS TO BE JUST ANOTHER NEIGHBOURHOOD BISTRO—AN IMPRESSION SUSTAINED WITHIN, WHERE THE DECOR IS MODEST AND SIMPLE, AND THE SCALE OF THE PLACE SPANS JUST 30-ODD SEATS OVER TWO SMALL ROOMS.
But a closer look reveals unmistakable signs of far more serious, old-school, European culinary ambitions. Now in its fifth year, the restaurant takes its name from boletus edulis—read cep, or porcini, one of the finest wild mushrooms. More revealing still is the contraption on the table in the corner: a duck press, modelled after the one introduced in the late 19th century at Le Tour d’Argent in Paris. Here, like there, your canard à la presse comes roasted rare and finished with a sauce made primarily from blood squeezed from its carcass and finished tableside—in this case by co-owner, front-of-house manager and co-chef Tobey Nemeth. Her husband, chef Michael Caballo, also produces a superior pâté en croûte, studded generously with foie gras. Culinary inspiration is drawn lightly from Spain, with emphasis placed on seasonal treasures sourced directly from trusted producers.
Fish and seafood are top-quality and often off the beaten path: think redbanded rockfish from B.C. with wild asparagus and Catalan suquet sauce, or giant Portuguese squid with ink rice and pimento stew. Raw fish dishes—ceviches, sashimis and carpaccios—are delightfully delicate in texture and complex in flavour. Set menus change daily and are complemented by “optional supplements,” which might include spot prawns, Chantecler chickens baked in hay, or white and black truffles—the latter taking centre stage with a full truffle menu in season. The European-style (read: delightfully indulgent and prolonged) Sunday brunch is a favourite ticket among its cultish foodie followers. The wine list is short but thoughtfully in sync with the food, and servers are adept at suggesting creative pairings.
Reservations between 12:00 PM until 1:30 PM
Wednesday to Sunday
6:00 PM until 10:30 PM
PHOTOGRAPHY BY MAT FABIJANIC