516 Danforth Ave.
Phone: (416) 466-8158
I’d always wanted to try Pan on the Danforth, and Winterlicious provided an excellent opportunity to check it out. This restaurant specializes in Greek & Mediterranean cuisine, which is reflected in the menu. The atmosphere is very nice, cozy & relaxed, I think this would be an excellent date spot, and judging by the crowd there that night, is also good for small gatherings (6-10 ppl). The look of the place is really inviting, the dining area is long and narrow, the back of it is raised a few steps, and there’s a fireplace at the end, there are candles everywhere, nice decorative accents, beaded chandelier type fixtures, real paintings and music that is at a very reasonable volume and I was sitting right under the speaker, so that’s saying something!
I went by myself for dinner – I really wanted to go & it was a last minute decision. My server checked in on me frequently, asked if I liked the table he chose for me, if I needed the music lowered, helped me choose my wine. I was very happy with the attention I received, which is something I think can get forgotten when a lone diner is out.
For my appetizer, I selected the Mezedakia, (mixed dip platter) which included hummus, taramosalata, (cod roe dip) and tirokafteri, (feta & spicy banana pepper dip) which also included a bit of cous cous in the middle. The dips were accompanied by 2 perfectly warmed pitas seasoned just right. These dips were all yummy, but my fave was the taramosalata. Yummy!
My main dish was the Kakavia – a traditional seafood dish of shrimp, mussels, seabass, calamari, scallops, salmon and onions, served in a homemade tomato white wine sauce. I can honestly say this was the best calamari I’ve ever eaten! It was fresh & meaty, cooked to perfection, not remotely rubbery or stringy. This was a divine dish. The sea bass was definitely up my alley. The portion was so generous as well, I struggled to finish, but I ate the bowl clean.
I asked my server about vegetarian options which were not evident on the menu, other than in the appetizers & salads, and he assured me that there are options like veggie moussaka, pasta dishes or they can customize a dish for you, so vegetarians are not to worry, you are welcome here. Now this is a nice place, so I would not categorize it in a cheap eats guide – entrees range from $14.95 – $24.95, but it was definitely well worth it.
I finished my meal with an extraordinary fig and port ice cream, caramelized in red wine and cinnamon reduction. YUUUUUUMMMMMM!!!!! Hats off to the chef, this was fantastic & homemade even!
Pan on the Danforth was truly a wonderful dining experience! The service was attentive, knowledgeable & friendly. The food will bring me back for many more visits as well – Pan is an awesome find!