Review: Leslieville’s Eastside Social may be the perfect neighbourhood local

Review: Leslieville’s Eastside Social may be the perfect neighbourhood local

(Image: Caroline Aksich)
(Image: Caroline Aksich) (Image: Caroline Aksich)
 

Eastside Social ★★½
1008 Queen St. E., 416-461-5663

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The ideal neighbourhood local—not too crowded, not too noisy, just-right prices—can be found in Leslieville. Eastside Social’s nautical theme (brass porthole outside, lobster trap–shaped lights within) is campy without being kitsch, and the food, cooked by former Ceili Cottage chef Chris Mentier, is refined comfort at its best. Bar snacks, like smoked-trout devilled eggs or homemade pickles and root-vegetable chips, are perfect with bracing cocktails. Moist salt-cod balls dipped in tomatillo salsa or romesco make an irresistible starter, as do brandy-buttered mushrooms on toast. Mains bring a crispy skate-wing “schnitzel” drizzled with tart caper butter and sided by a luscious herbed potato salad, and a heaping plate of craggy fried chicken with a chickpea- and poppyseed-laced slaw.

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