@DeluxRestaurant – Permanently closed

Posted on August 22, 2013


I have been quiet for a while. Quiet in a sense that I lost my voice for a few days. As I am a teacher, it was a major concern when my doctor told me that there was nothing to prescribe but to get myself to refrain from talking for 3 – 5 days. Luckily, it happened middle of the week and I got the weekend to quarantine myself so I don’t talk. That meant no food events (I missed out on Mabuhay on the Harbourfront, Kultura at Wychwood Barns and CraveTO), no visits to cool restaurants and it was me, myself and I for a while. Now that was all behind me, I was obviously overly joyful to be out again. My voice still doesn’t sound like it should but it doesn’t bother me as much. Looking back it wasn’t really that long in silent solitude. But it really takes a lot out of me not being able to mix or communicate with people.

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So I finally came out last night to the land of the talking. I went to see my friend Diona, a.ka. TitaFlips and asked her for an impromptu dinner date. There are some restaurants I have on my radar and most of them were in the west. As I waited for her to finish at Kanto, another blogger came and she added one more restaurant to my growing list. I went to check it out yesterday but it was too full even on the late hour. Standing at the side of the road at 9pm and famished, I saw that what was next door was another restaurant called Delux Restaurant.  I have seen quite a few good reviews from months ago and it seems to be consistent raving about their Cubano Sandwich. Savouring my freedom from quiet quarantine, Diona, her mom, Lina and I walked in and was happy to see that there was no waiting. There was a free booth with our names on it.

As I already knew what I wanted from Delux, I took a quick look around. I have this immense enjoyment that I was taking pictures for my blog once again. The restaurant could easily be part of my house, as it was fully decked with wooden furniture and fixtures. Most of them were antiques with that cozy comfortable rustic feel of familiarity. It doesn’t feel too old as whoever designed the placed kept a balance of contemporary with old using a fashion-forward light feature on one wall and a wood-framed mirror on the other. Paying attention to my dining companions once again, I found out that Diona went for the Cubano sandwich like me and Lina went for Bouillabaisse. When I heard what Lina chose, I had that fleeting moment of indecision, wanting to make that impulsive choice of changing my mind. In the end I found out it was good to keep my ground.

Our food didn’t take too long to prepare. I didn’t even think it was more than 10 minute wait. We were still trying to finish the complimentary bread that was served when all three plates arrived. There was something really elegant about seeing a plate very well composed without being pretentious. I often get impressed when a chef dares to use restraint as minimalism tends to highlight the littlest of flaws. Seeing the Boullabaise, again I was repentant. It looked pretty much like the one I enjoyed at a Southern French town called Albi many years ago. After a quick taste, it brought me back to that French restaurant. The soup so deep in flavour and very much refined, paired with crusty bread, it was very satisfying. Digging into the soup, the bottom was lined with precisely cut and tender potatoes with slivers of fennel. There was no hint of fishiness despite all the shellfish and scallop in it. The scallop and the shrimp was plump, sweet and pliant. It was indeed a bowl to remind me of Albi.

Paying more attention to the sandwich that got me there, I appreciated the precision of the grilled marks on the bread. It gave that crispness that made the sandwich taste even better than it already was. Inside a very generous sized toasted bread was a generous pile of cider cured pork, ham, grainy mustard, cornichons and red onions. Biting into it was gratifying as each layer spoke of harmony. There was nothing in that sandwich I would add nor remove. As the serving was too big, I only managed to finish half. I believe that item was available on their lunch menu. That would make this sandwich pretty much accessible to me when I loiter around the Queen St. West area, window shopping on so many little shops in the neighbourhood.

As it was two for two, I told Diona of another best-seller that the restaurant apparently have. Each review I read talked heavily about the sugar-cinnamon dusted donuts. How can the kitchen go wrong with it when something complicated like the Bouillabaisse was such a winner? After the first bite, it was three for three! Such a simple pleasure of eating something so fluffy, warm and sweet. If it were possible for me to even have a better mood than my joy of being out of quiet quarantine, it happened as I was savoring the donut.

Thank you Delux Restaurant. It was such a pleasure to experience your food and the service you give was praiseworthy. There is no doubt that I would be back once again for another round of your good food. This was such a good night to feel well again and enjoy the comforts of good friends and a good meal.
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