What’s on the menu at Bar Notte, a St. Lawrence cocktail lounge serving Italian drinks and snacks until 2 a.m.
Including tartare-stuffed cannoli
Name: Bar Notte
Contact: 11 Church St., barnotte.ca, @barnotte
Neighbourhood: St. Lawrence
Owners: Adam Teolis, Michael Angeloni, Yannick Bigourdan (Amano Trattoria)
Chefs: Michael Angeloni
Accessibility: Not fully accessible
During the pandemic, Adam Teolis and Michael Angeloni amicably split off from their hospitality group to open Amano Trattoria, a big Italian restaurant with an equally sizable menu. The sprawling spot was connected to a much smaller space by a hallway. And up until about three months ago, this smaller space was empty, serving as Amano’s pasta- and bread-making station—basically a blank canvas for two people thinking of starting another project.
“We dreamed of opening a sister restaurant that would complement Amano but have its own identity,” says Teolis. “Something with a smaller menu and smaller plates; something more relaxed, but with a bit of fine-dining sensibility.” The end result is Bar Notte, which shares its DNA (and a 200-label wine list) with Amano but is a bit more vibey and comparatively compact. Head here for creatively constructed after-work drinks and snacks under the watchful eye of a mural of Dean Martin.
Bar Notte’s selection of snacks and small plates is Italian inspired, but with a sort of whimsy that produces saffron-laced “Italian ceviche” and cannoli stuffed with beef tartare. Rome is the menu’s soft regional focus, with suppli (cheese-stuffed rice balls—but don’t call them arancini) and pinsa, Roman-style pizza made with a mix of seven flours. There are a couple of “sangwiches” on house focaccia, spicy whipped ’nduja with house-made burrata and deviled eggs topped with crisp guanciale. It’s playful fare with obvious fine-dining roots.
Equal parts cocktail spot and wine bar, Bar Notte offers full access to Amano’s extensive wine list with its mix of high-end bottles and accessible (but still high-quality) by-the-glass options. Cocktails are rooted in the flourish and detail-orientation of mixology, but without the gels and dry-ice dramatics. Beers are Italian or Italian-inspired, like Hamilton’s Fairweather Italian pilsner, and imported large-format bottles.
It’s a moody, dimly lit space punctuated with a black-and-white mural of the legendary Dean Martin—sporting peonies and grapes on his collar, no less—and some neon song lyrics. Relative to its sister restaurant, Bar Notte is a compact space but with plenty of cozy booth seating and an open kitchen. An eclectic mix of modern hip hop, soul and jazz (quieter in the early evening and ramping up for the wee hours) makes for a fun, upbeat vibe.