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Friday, April 15, 2005
  Excellent Italian Food At A Snobby Mall

Oliver & Bonacini Café Grill

Address: Bayview Village Shopping Centre ~ 2901 Bayview Avenue, Toronto, Ontario
(416) 590-130

I've only seen this restaurant in passing, it is located in Bayview Village Mall, which is mainly upscale stores, so I may have wrote it off as a little too snooty and expensive for most of our outings. It's a very busy and popular spot, and I do not recommend this place as a quiet place to eat, the kitchen is wide open and there is a lot of tables.

Tonight we started our evening with a shared "Prosciutto Plate with summer pear, toasted walnuts and argula ($9.95)". I'm not a huge fan of prosciutto, but I tried a little of it all combined and it was delectable.

I ordered the "Smoked Chicken with fusilli, mixed mushrooms, garden peas and extra virgin olive oil ($14.95)" for my main dish. I loved this dish, it was the right mix of flavours and not too oily. I really hoped it had more mushrooms, they were few and far between.

I finished my meal off with a Blood Orange and Raspberry Sorbet with shortbread stick ($5.50). The blood orange flavour was the special sorbet of the evening and was delightful mixed with the raspberry. I wish I could have had the shortbread, it looked very tasty as well. They also had a good selection of other cakes, tarts, ice cream and pies to choose from.

Our service tonight was excellent, our server Stephen, was friendly, efficient and helpful. He got a very decent tip from us. I hope the rest of the staff is even close to his proficiency.

The cost of the meal was actually a little better than I expected, there is a good range of items to choose from so even if you don't want to spend a bundle you can get some quality food. Most of the main dishes are in the $11.95 to $23.95 area. The portion size of our meals were okay, but don't expect an overflowing plate of food. For me my dish was perfectly sized for how much I should eat.

I should note, on the menu there is an added surcharge for shared appetizers and entrées, but I don't recall if we were charged extra for our shared “Prosciutto Plate”. I really find that kind of a “nickel and dime” kind of way to inflate a bill.

Oh man, I love this restaurant.
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