Chef Robbie Hojilla Resurfaces at The Harbord Room
We were greatly relieved to stumble upon Chef Robbie Hojilla, late of the now-defunct Hudson Kitchen and share his seasonal, ‘root to leaf’ inspirational food in the hopping, beigey, rosey sun-dappled Monday evening Harbord Room. Did I mention hopping? Who knew Monday’s were big dining out nights in Hog Town.
We were a difficult table number 18 on this evening; I am allergic to all shell fish, John is vegetarian verging on vegan, a third diner has a complete list of her specific allergies on file with the restaurant. However, Chef Hojilla rose to the occasion, greeting us personally at table, reminisced about our glorious meals at Hudson Kitchen and proceeded to sculpt our individual dishes personally.
In Chef Hoijlla’s Seasonal Hands
Cocktails of Negronis, glasses of 2013 Guilhem ‘Le Chardonnay’ from Languedoc start us off. Craving some greens, my only option is the Broccoli Salad: Shaved Parmigianino, Crispy Prosciutto, Mustard & Sultana Dressing and I am not disappointed with it’s crispy, crunchy, salty loveliness. John (the Veg) munches down on Roasted Cauliflower Gratin with Buttered Breadcrumbs & Fresh Herbs and enjoys a side of Roasted Brussels Sprouts & Beets (without the Prosciutto), Crispy Onion & Pumpkin Seeds.
Our Laundry List of Allergies guest puts herself completely in Chef Hoijlla’s seasonal hands and he offers a grain bowl of couscous with fresh Ontario Fiddle Heads, pumpkin seeds and various and assorted ‘root to leaf’ ingredients too numerous to list here. Yum.
Our buoyant and thoughtful server continued to top up our Chardonnay while the Monday crowd turned over from U of T students enjoying an end of school year special evening, to power brokers in suits and their girls in heels and short white dresses.