Introducing: Cluny, a massive (seriously, massive) new bistro in the Distillery from the owners of El Catrin
Name: Cluny Bistro
Contact Info: 35 Tank House Ln., 416-203-2632, clunybistro.com, @ClunyDistillery
Owners: Distillery Restaurant Corp, the group behind El Catrin, Pure Spirits, Archeo and The Boiler House
Chef(s): Executive chef Paul Benallick, whose 20 years’ experience includes stints at Jump, Stock, Auberge du Pommier and George Brown College’s The Chefs’ House. He works alongside pastry chef Chris Kwok and “boulanger” Lucas Craig
The Food: Updated bistro dishes, like chili-ginger frog legs and Buffalo sweetbreads, plus an on-trend assortment of crudos, ceviches and seafood tartares (including an unconventional “Nicoise” tartare with egg, French beans and olives). More traditional options include French onion soup, brie-slathered brioche and six different steak-frites platters. Those wishing to indulge (or impress) can take advantage of the “foie gras this or truffle that” supplement, which buys a few ounces of foie for the table—or a whole truffle at near-wholesale cost.
The Drinks: The mid-range wine list is largely French and peppered with other popular picks. The cocktail list sticks to classic French drinks with a few signature creations, like the citrusy Joie de Vivre, which has a gingerbread-sugar rim.
The Place: The old Tank House space has been transformed into a neo-Parisian stunner, dripping in ornate porcelain and marble. The space is divided into a formal dining room, a more casual bar, a soon-to-open café and bakery, and a large wraparound patio (opening mid-summer).