What’s on the menu at Henry’s, a new restaurant and wine shop on Queen West

What’s on the menu at Henry’s, a new restaurant and wine shop on Queen West

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Name: Henry’s
Contact: 922 Queen St. West, henrystoronto.ca, @henrys.to
Neighbourhood: West Queen West
Owners: Roxanne and Ben Hodson
Chefs: Kevin Le, Alex Fields
Seating: 51 indoors
Accessibility: Not fully accessible

The food

Symbiosis between food and wine is the through line for this Queen West kitchen. What’s available by the glass rotates weekly, as does the menu; the kitchen confers closely with the front of house to make sure their offerings are cohesive, touching base before each service. Chefs Le and Fields—alumni of Noma and Momofuku Kojin, respectively—bring the menu a strong focus on seasonality, working with purveyors like 100km Foods and Woodward Meats.

Chef Kevin Le

Expect unexpected flavour combinations, like skate wing in a vivid pool of green coconut curry dotted with Kashmiri chili oil, heirloom tomato with brown butter plums, and macerated strawberries with a lovely chamomile stem–infused oil. It’s refined fare, but free of gratuitous complexity and well-suited to enjoy with a glass of something special.

Lychee ceviche, besides being really fun to say, is a solid vegan take on a classic. Cured in a lime-ginger-cilantro leche de tigre, the sweet, scallop-like fruit is garnished with avocado mousse, dill oil and Aleppo chili oil. Toasty togarashi-spiced cassava chips top it all off. $18

 

Heirloom tomatoes and plum that’s been tossed in brown butter and charcoal-grilled feel like an obvious pairing. The salad is dressed with a cilantro-, dill-, and parsley-infused herb oil and finished with crunchy pistachios. $16. (In the glass, a crisp 2021 Sancerre rosé—that is, rosé made with 100 per cent Pinot Noir grapes—from Lucien Crochet)

 

An absolute knockout dish, the shrimp toast pairs house-made shrimp paste in sesame-crusted Pullman loaf, fried to crispy-crunchy perfection and served with lemongrass aioli, minced cilantro stems and a dollop of hot mustard. It’s to die for. $14

 

Skate wing is lightly dredged in rice flour and pan-seared in butter before being set atop a pool of lightly spicy green coconut curry drizzled with a duo of cilantro and Kashmiri chili oil. A garnish of quick-pickled daikon and carrot, cilantro, Thai basil, and crispy shallot pulls it all together. $32. (In the glass, a spicy, full-bodied 2020 Côtes du Rhône from Châteauneuf-du-Pape’s Domaine de Beaurenard—as quintessential a Côtes du Rhône as it gets)

 

Dessert is macerated strawberries in chamomile syrup, drizzled with a lovely green oil made with chamomile stems. The berries are decked out with almond spongecake, Chantilly cream, white chocolate and crunchy strawberry meringue shards. $14

 

A whole snacky spread

 

Owners Ben and Roxanne Hodson
The drinks

Co-owner Ben Hodson also runs Brix and Mortar, a wine import agency that focuses on traditional, mostly old-world bottles from family-owned wineries—if you’re looking for a break from the natural wine scene’s funk, you’ll find it here. (Hodson has a predilection for magnums, so this is a solid place to bring a large party.) The broad, evolving list is likely to offer something new each time you visit. And, should you want to take your favourite bottle (or five) home, there’s a small bottle shop next to the dining room.

Another star in the wine lineup is the 2020 Knebel Riesling. Bright, clean and pleasantly acidic with a dry finish, it’s for people who think they don’t like Riesling

 

Next to the dining room, a small bottle shop sells a solid selection. Many bottles sold in singles here are normally available only by the case.
The space

A clean palette of cream, green and gold gives the room a warm glow accented with soft curves and lime-washed walls. At the front, a U-shaped marble bar comfortably seats 15, flowing into a large dining room composed of mostly cozy booths. The bottle shop neighbouring the dining room doubles as a special event and tasting space.