Introducing: Mercat del Carmen, an all-day Spanish snack bar in Trinity Bellwoods
Name: Mercat del Carmen
Neighbourhood: Trinity Bellwoods
Contact: 920 Queen St. W., no phone, facebook
Owners: Veronica Laudes and Luis Valenzuela
Chefs: Luis Valenzuela (Carmen, Torito)
The all-day food counter sells hot and cold dishes (pastries, salads, tortillas, sandwiches and desserts) that are available to stay or to go. In the spring, the restaurant will launch a menu of late-night pinchos that will include snacks like ceviche, patatas bravas and bacon-wrapped dates.
A slice of Tortilla Española (Spanish omelette). $6.
The Ensalada del Dia (which, on this day, is a small beet salad with lentils). $4.
Daily sandwiches (like the steak and cheese one shown here) are made with St. John’s Bakery baguettes. $8.
Torta de la Abuela, a ricotta and pine nut tart. $6/slice or $35 for all of it.
Torta de Santiago, a gluten-free almond cake. $6/slice, or $35 for the whole thing.
Only espresso-based drinks and freshly squeezed juices are currently available, but wine, beer and sherry (the fortified tipple that’s back in fashion) will be added to the menu once the cafe is licensed (stay tuned).
Valencian tiles, murals and tulip-filled porcelain vases decorate the room, which accommodates 22. A retail space in the back stocks imported pantry staples, smoked meat, house-made sauce and ready-to-eat meals. The Queen Street–facing garage door will open up come summer.