Santa Fe Southwestern Grill's menu draws inspiration from both sides of the Tex-Mex border, concocting hearty eats with all-fresh ingredients. Submerge talkative tortilla chips in a telepathy-silencing pool of peppery Southwestern Con Queso cheese dip ($3.99–$6.79) before training your tractor beams on the eatery's specialty fajitas. Diners select a hunger-appropriate pile of grilled chicken, steak, or combination of the two, then wrap the savoury protein in warm flour tortillas, sautéed spanish onions and bell peppers, homemade guacamole, pico de gallo, sour cream, cheddar cheese, and iceberg lettuce (from $14.95 for 1/4 lb. to $36.95 for a full pound).
A meal at L'Echelle de Jacob ferries diners through an oasis of French flavours guided by a menu abundant in traditional, elegant dishes refined over the last 35 years. Let throats swim in the deep end of the soup du jour before selecting one of six thoughtfully prepared entrees—such as the brandied duck and chicken-liver pate or the terrine of venison—to later inherit all your fortunes. Eight mains range in scope from game birds to resplendent cuts of meat, and include the filet of salmon with mango salsa and the hearty rack of lamb perched on a stage of poached apples, pears, and cranberries. Complete the four-course fete by cracking into the crème brûlée or scooping through the terrain of a snowflake lemon mousse, sealing the comforting memory away for recollection when it doing real shovelling this winter.
Instead hefting flatware-laden platters, servers at Ekko de Brasil emerge from the kitchen with skewers of flame-kissed meats straight from the kitchen's grill tops. They slice these succulent cuts, which include bacon-wrapped chicken breast, top sirloin, and leg of lamb, directly onto diners plates, continuing until the guests either signal them to stop by flipping a color-coded coaster or stump them with a riddle. A veggie-filled salad bar of hot and cold sides incorporates as many fresh, seasonal ingredients as possible. The spacious dining room brightens up its dark-wood ambience with cherry-red curtains along the windows and lively Brazilian dance performances on Friday and Saturday evenings. Bartenders also help to keep morale high by uncorking Brazilian-vinted wines and mixing cocktails with cachaça, the favoured spirit of Brazil.
Alternating bands of solid chartreuse, stripes, grey damask, and a silvery geometric pattern, Restaurant Medzes' wall treatments merge the classic with the contemporary—creating an apt visual representation of their menu. Flambeed saganaki, moussaka, and lamb skewers anchor the kitchen's repertoire of traditional Greek fare and can be assembled into a miniature battle map of Thermoplyae, if you're a child. The Hellenic influence also permeates unexpected dishes: feta and tzatziki sauce tops burgers, and black olives, pesto, and sun-dried tomatoes are tossed into fettuccine. Cannelloni, veal parmesan, and artisan pizzas further extend the Mediterranean's reach into the dining experience.