Rose and Sons is one of the hottest new restaurants in Toronto located at 176 Dupont Street. I had wanted to go check it out for some time, but as I am with many new restaurants it took some time to get there. Last Friday I decided to check it out with my girlfriend Amanda and our friend Jo to see if it lived up to all the hype.
We went early Friday and arrived at the restaurant around noon. Our first impressions were the place looked kinda like an old sketchy diner, but who really cares as long as the food is delicious! Because there isn’t a lot in the area (that would draw a lunch crowd) lunch time is probably one of the easiest times to get in to get a seat quickly. I’ve read that other times you can often experience a lineup for over several hours. Fortunately there is a bar right next door so you can go drinkin’ while you wait.
We were sat at the bar which I thought would be a good experience as you get to interact with the staff more and have a view directly into their kitchen. Unfortunately one of my biggest complaints is this restaurant appears to be designed for midgets because my 6’2 legs sure weren’t going to fit under the counter. Even some of the shorter members of my party were struggling with their knees as well. We thought about maybe switching to a table but really didn’t want to wait and they didn’t appear to have much more space.
The Rose and Sons menu itself isn’t very big for the brunch/lunch service and contains a mixture of breakfast and lunch options. I asked which were the most popular items from the menu and was told either the brisket, the fried rice or the patty melt. Since Amanda opted for the patty melt, I decided to give the brisket a try. Jo was in more of a breakfast mood and decided to get the 3 eggs with a pork chop. Here is a picture of the lunch menu. We were told that the menu changes all the time though so this may not be what you get if you decide to visit. Also, there is a different menu for dinner but they didn’t have a copy of it when we were there.
Here are some pictures of each of the items that we ordered:
My brisket dish was awesome! I am a huge fan of sweet and savoury dishes and this was an excellent balance of flavour combinations. The brisket itself fell apart on contact and was cooked perfectly while the egg and cornbread finished the dish off quite well. At first I thought the portion looked kinda small but after finishing it I was more than satisfied.
Amanda was kind enough to share a few bites of her burger with me. While it is nice to get a burger that hasn’t been cooked to oblivion this one didn’t do much for me. One of her biggest complaints was it was salt heavy which I had to agree with. Don’t get me wrong, it was good, just nowhere near as mind blowing-ly delicious as the brisket. The fries were very tasty though and I really liked the chili mayo.
I can’t really comment too much on Jo’s meal since I didn’t try any, but it seemed like a basic breakfast to me. Overall he said it was a great meal though!
Our bill came to $57 ($64.41 w/ tax) which also included 2 fresh squeezed tangerine juices ($4) and a ginger ale ($3). While this is on the high end of a cheap meal, I think the price is quite good considering the quality going into the food. Jo asked for jam to go on his toast and they gave him a really nice homemade jam which is a nice touch showing that they care about the quality of the food. It’s definitely not a place you go everyday for lunch (though I’m sure the owner would like if you did) but for a once in a while treat I think you get your money’s worth.
The service is a bit rougher than what many people might be used to, but I am OK with it. I actually kind of like it as it makes the meal more interesting when the servers don’t try to be super-proper about everything. For example when describing the burger our server didn’t hesitate to refer to it as the “sex burger”. He even went as far as to spell “S-E-X” out when Jo remarked, “Sex burger?”. The wait was good and we never were left waiting for anything.
I really loved my brisket meal and would definitely go back for another some time. The others in my party were very happy with their food, but at the same time weren’t overly mind blown. They can be a bit heavy with salt, and things can get a little greasy too, but if you like those kind of things you will enjoy this place a lot! While I don’t think this place is for everyone, I definitely recommend giving them a try! I look forward to trying out their dinner menu some time too!
ROSE AND SONS CONTACT INFO