Review: John and Sons, a new people-watching pub and oyster bar in Rosedale

Review: John and Sons, a new people-watching pub and oyster bar in Rosedale

(Image: Emma McIntyre)
John and Sons ½
1 Balmoral Ave., 416-515-0551

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Rosedale’s new oyster bar is all sideways glances, double kisses and how-do-you-know-so-and-so’s. The seafood-centred pub standards are almost as good as the people watching. A black-edged slab of toast supports steamed mussels sprinkled with finely diced sweet tomatoes, chorizo and chilies. It’s a satisfying start, followed by seared scallops perched on buttery brussels sprouts and a rich squash purée, with a dollop of bacon jam to tie the whole thing together. The menu’s only blunder is a salt-deprived black cod fillet in a bland bonito broth. As the room reaches a Friday night fever pitch, the service cracks: dirty dishes are ignored, riesling is served at room temperature, and every baked oyster in this oyster house is sold out—the consequence of being the neighbourhood’s latest hot spot.