Review: Skin and Bones, Leslieville’s newest wine bar
Leslieville’s brunch row has been infiltrated by wine bars. This latest and largest occupies a former auto parts warehouse and has a vast, ’90s throwback dining room of claret walls, exposed ducts, terrazzo floors and high ceilings that amplify the chatter of couples (in matching tortoiseshell glasses) into a deafening din. The bar seating in the intimate front room is a better place to appreciate the list of far-flung vintages that includes a bevvy of easy-drinking Beaujolais and chardonnay. Matthew Sullivan, who earned a small cult following running the pop-up dinner club Boxed and as chef at L’Unità and Maléna, has created a seasonal bistro menu of hits and misses. His salad of dandelion greens and creamy, Woodbridge-produced stracciatella cheese balances competing textures and flavours, but his beef tartare is an unappealing lump overpowered by diced onion. A main of perfectly slow-cooked beef cheek bourguignon is laced with delicate ribbons of delicious fat, yet a farmed Ontario trout floats in an uninspired, over-peppered broth. Airy brioche doughnuts are sweet enough without the double-dose of white chocolate shavings and caramel that come with it.