In a city still closely associated with beef, the balanced flavours and strong execution of Ten Foot Henry’s vegetable-centric menu has nonetheless made the restaurant a go-to for a good night out. Launched in 2016 by husband and wife team Steve Smee and Aja Lapointe, this spot matches a lightness of design—a windowless space that manages to feel airy with its high ceilings, white walls and lush plants—with a menu where the ingredients speak for themselves. Fresh vegetables are given a chance to shine on simple plates that play to their strengths. Under Smee’s skilled hand, humble brassicas and standard root veggies are enhanced with subtle counterpoints of flavour and texture, such as cauliflower with spicy Korean gochujang and potatoes spiked with lime and jalapeno. Regular favourites—such as the soothing warmed tomatoes and herbs set atop sourdough toast and the crowd-pleasing vegetarian cacio e pepe—remain menu stalwarts, thankfully. And while vegetables take the spotlight on the menu, fish and meat, including, yes, hangar steak and striploin, are tasty options. They make a delicious side dish to all those veggies.
Photos: DESERAE EVENSON