What’s on the menu at M’Eat, Leslieville’s new restaurant that’s also a butcher shop

What’s on the menu at M’Eat, Leslieville’s new restaurant that’s also a butcher shop

Name: M’Eat Resto and Butcher
Contact: 806 Queen St. E., meatrestobutcher.com, @meatrestobutcher
Neighbourhood: Leslieville
Previously: Mazz Japanese Bistro
Owner: Cameron Nelson and Danielle Brown
Chef: Cameron Nelson (O&B, Nyood, Bymark) and chef de cuisine Rudy Boquila (Lamesa)

The food

Cameron Nelson moved to Toronto from rural Alberta 20 years ago. While he’s mostly adjusted, the farm boy felt the city was missing a place for great steak in an unpretentious atmosphere. He’s bringing in one animal at a time from a farm in Gowanstown (where each cow has two acres of land and a diet of grass and fruit rinds from the Sun-Kissed factory) and breaking them down in-house.

Lunchtime sees a simple menu of sandwiches, burgers and steak frites that come in a variety of cuts. As Nelson is only working with one cow at a time, cuts will depend on availability. The dinner menu (which is surprisingly vegetarian friendly) also features an oyster-less raw bar that includes three versions of raw beef plates from around the world: a tataki, a carpaccio and a tartare. The exact preparation of each will change regularly, dictated by what’s in season.

Tempura-battered green beans served with calamansi ponzu. $10.


This cauliflower dish features the cruciferous veggie prepared four different ways: charred, pickled, braised in red wine and raw. It’s dressed with some smoked peach tahini. $14.


This corn is topped with an herb-olive oil and then rolled in deep-fried shallots and crispy vermicelli. $7.


This hanger steak tartare is made with horseradish Dijon, fried capers and quail yolk. $20.


This tataki is a rib-eye cut drowned in yuzu ponzu. $20.


This tomahawk steak was lightly smoked before hitting the grill, then rested until medium rare. Nelson refuses to cook beef well. If well-done your jam, he’ll ask you to order some brisket instead. $70.


Nelson and the featured tomahawk.


Shortly after visiting the farm, Cameron committed to buying all 52 of the cattle. The cows are a mix of Black Angus and Black Simmental. Because they’re fed very little corn, they meat is leaner and more flavourful.


The butcher block menu displays the day’s cuts.


There are two menus of hearty sides. One is fully vegan (it’s cheekily titled “Cow’s Trough”). The other menu of sides includes milk and cheese products.


The drinks

Since Nelson will be doing a lot of meal prep behind the bar, he wanted a concise menu of easy-to-pour drinks that he could make in between primping plates. This translates to beer, wine and whisky. The beers are all hyper-local (Godspeed, Muddy York) and the whiskeys partly local (Gooderham & Worts, Crown Royal and Bowmore), while the wines are international, most of them Old World options.

The space

Cameron’s built a few fences in his day, so he took on the bulk of this three-week whirlwind reno. They transformed a moody Japanese bistro into a room with a farmhouse feel by using a ton of barnboard, a few antique tables and a pastoral wallpaper scene. They’re working on a grab-and-go section that will include stocks, demi glace and oven-ready stews and lasagnas. A few Canadian products from small-scale producers (maple syrup, finishing salts, preserves) are also for sale.

There’s also a 24-seat patio out back with an herb garden.


Nelson and Brown.