Advertisement
Food & Drink

What’s on the menu at Frilu, Thornhill’s fancy new Canadian tasting menu restaurant

By Renée Suen| Photography by Renée Suen
What’s on the menu at Frilu, Thornhill’s fancy new Canadian tasting menu restaurant
The Pumpkin Patch features a mini-pumpkin filled with a bone marrow soufflé. The pumpkin mixture is meant to be spread on the accompanying house-made pumpkin seed bread.

Name: Frilu Contact: 7713 Yonge St., Thornhill, 289-597-8867, frilurestaurant.com, @frilu_restaurant
Neighbourhood: Thornhill Previously: Wild Taurus Tapas Bar Owners: John-Vincent Troiano and Sandra Troiano Chef: Executive chef John-Vincent Troiano (Tutti Matti, Acadia) and head chef So Sakata (Via Allegro)

The food

The restaurant’s name is derived from the Norwegian term friluftsliv, which roughly means “being one with nature.” Frilu’s $95 eight- to twelve-course contemporary Canadian tasting menu is driven by local and seasonal ingredients, but heavily influenced by Asian flavours and techniques, which can be seen in the current 10-course menu that Troiano (who completed a stage at Noma) developed with chefs So Sakata and Keith Siu. Those looking for less of a commitment can order from an a la carte snack menu that may list items like a katsu sandwich.

What’s on the menu at Frilu, Thornhill’s fancy new Canadian tasting menu restaurant
Troiano’s Lar-Eo sandwiches whipped pork fat between black quinoa and blueberry biscuits.

 

What’s on the menu at Frilu, Thornhill’s fancy new Canadian tasting menu restaurant
Prosciutto-aged rainbow trout with fermented ground cherry in a sake broth with yeast oil.

 

What’s on the menu at Frilu, Thornhill’s fancy new Canadian tasting menu restaurant
The Ground and Sea dish tops an agedashi-style cube of burdock with Vancouver sea urchin and roasted chicken jus.

 

What’s on the menu at Frilu, Thornhill’s fancy new Canadian tasting menu restaurant
The Cervos, Smoke and Hazel features a piece of venison tongue that’s been roasted over Japanese charcoal. It’s topped with fresh hazelnut shavings and accompanied by an onion-anchovy purée.

 

What’s on the menu at Frilu, Thornhill’s fancy new Canadian tasting menu restaurant
The Pumpkin Patch features a mini-pumpkin filled with a bone marrow soufflé. The pumpkin mixture is meant to be spread on the accompanying house-made pumpkin seed bread.

 

Advertisement
What’s on the menu at Frilu, Thornhill’s fancy new Canadian tasting menu restaurant
Mineral / Savory features a grilled hen-of-the-woods mushroom brushed with fermented mushroom paste and bread miso.

 

What’s on the menu at Frilu, Thornhill’s fancy new Canadian tasting menu restaurant
The Surf and Turf pairs a butter-roasted spiny lobster tail with beef floss and serves them on horseradish cream.

 

What’s on the menu at Frilu, Thornhill’s fancy new Canadian tasting menu restaurant
Waterfowl: Marsh combines coal-roasted duck breast with rice and crispy dehydrated kale, turnip and bonito flakes. The dish is finished tableside with a burnt-onion broth.

 

What’s on the menu at Frilu, Thornhill’s fancy new Canadian tasting menu restaurant
Earth Apple, an alias for Jerusalem artichokes, shows up as both ice cream and deep-fried chips, topped with roasted apple purée and coffee crumble.

 

What’s on the menu at Frilu, Thornhill’s fancy new Canadian tasting menu restaurant
This Frilu-branded Dora Cake is Troiano’s rendition of the dorayaki, a Japanese dessert made with Castella pancakes and typically filled with red bean paste. Here the pancakes sandwich fresh mascarpone, fermented pear and sake lees.

 

Advertisement
What’s on the menu at Frilu, Thornhill’s fancy new Canadian tasting menu restaurant
Executive chef and co-owner John-Vincent Troiano.

 

The drinks

Besides a short list of wine, sake and beer, there are a couple of house tonics made with seaweed- or cedar-infused rice spirits. Guests can opt-in on beverage pairings, which may feature anything from the photo below, or Portuguese madeira selected by front-of-house manager Kelli Ewing (Tutti Matti).

What’s on the menu at Frilu, Thornhill’s fancy new Canadian tasting menu restaurant
A selection of beer, wine and sake, offered at Frilu.

 

What’s on the menu at Frilu, Thornhill’s fancy new Canadian tasting menu restaurant
Frilu’s digestion-aiding tonic is made with a seaweed-infused rice spirit.

 

NEVER MISS A TORONTO LIFE STORY

Sign up for Table Talk, our free newsletter with essential food and drink stories.

By signing up, you agree to our terms of use and privacy policy.
You may unsubscribe at any time.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

The space

The minimalist-designed space is all stone, wood and even some preserved moss. There’s a patio out front and—get this—free parking behind the restaurant.

What’s on the menu at Frilu, Thornhill’s fancy new Canadian tasting menu restaurant
What’s on the menu at Frilu, Thornhill’s fancy new Canadian tasting menu restaurant
This wood-panelled wall was cut and patterned to mimic mountains, an auspicious symbol in feng shui (which Sandra practices).

 

What’s on the menu at Frilu, Thornhill’s fancy new Canadian tasting menu restaurant
Advertisement
Advertisement

More New Restaurants

What's on the menu at Edna and Vita, a splashy new Italian restaurant in the old Reds Wine Tavern space
Food & Drink

What’s on the menu at Edna and Vita, a splashy new Italian restaurant in the old Reds Wine Tavern space