It’s taken me a while to drop by Foxley since they don’t take reservations and it’s located all the way at Dundas and Ossington. Mike and I finally made our way over one Saturday evening with Chris and Jo. As I mentioned, they don’t take reservations so we arrived at 6pm, right when they opened.The space itself is quite small and has a cozy feel to it with its dim lighting and warm service. I’m glad we arrived right when it opened since the restaurant started to fill up soon after.
The menu is overwhelmingly large and features Asian-inspired tapas. Given how large the menu is, it would be pretty tough to tackle with only two people. There were four of us and we still had a lot of trouble narrowing it down to a few dishes.
The one thing I knew I wanted to order was their famous Blue Crab and Avocado Salad ($10).The salad was served in a half shell of avocado with the avocado still intact. The salad contained a good amount of crab without too much filler and I loved the creaminess of the avocado which complimented the salad perfectly. There was some siracha hot sauce drizzled on the plate which added a nice kick to the dish. Loved it all – a great way to start off the meal!Since there were a number of different ceviches on the menu, we decided to order a couple. The first one that arrived was the Sea Bream Ceviche – with yuzu and shiso ($15).
The dish was topped with a ton of green onions, parsley and garlic chips… there were so many toppings that you couldn’t even see the sea bream underneath it all. Upon my first bite, I was surprised by the strong citrus flavour…but I guess that’s from the yuzu. I found the citrus flavour to be too overpowering and didn’t really enjoy this dish.
However, Jo absolutely loved it. She exclaimed that she loved all the flavours of this ceviche and gladly took my share of the dish. So, don’t let my preferences deter you from ordering this. It’s clearly a matter of preference.The second ceviche we ordered was the Organic Sea Scallops Ceviche – with kumquat and grilled jalapeno ($15). The dish was served with thin slices of scallop topped with parsley, green onion and jalapeno, which gave it a nice kick.
So, how did it taste? Perhaps it was the flavour of kumquat that threw me off, but there was something in this dish that I just didn’t particularly enjoy. Again, it’s just a matter of preference since Mike and Jo really enjoyed this dish. Since Chris and I have similar tastes, we didn’t care for it too much.
After we finished the ceviches, the next dish that arrived was the Spicy Crispy Shrimps – with jalapeno and garlic ($14). The large pieces of shrimp were lightly fried and came with a delicious sauce which was a little sweet and spicy.The next dish that came was the Frog’s Legs – sautéed with poblano and Szechuan spices ($14). Since I don’t often see frog legs on a menu, this was something I really wanted to order. It took some convincing but we ended up ordering it. Seemed like it was a good choice as everyone enjoyed this dish.
When it first arrived, the smell of it reminded me of black bean sauce. Didn’t taste quite like black bean sauce though. The sauce and toppings were similar to the spicy crispy shrimps and went perfectly with the frog legs, which tasted exactly like chicken… just slightly more delicate. I recommend ordering this if you can stomach it!Mike’s choice was the Grilled Marinated Beef Short Ribs ($14). For $14, I thought the portion was a touch on the small side… not a whole lot of short ribs. But size aside, they were delicious and the taste was similar to Kalbi you get at Korean restaurants. Oh and they definitely get points for how tender the meat was.
Since it was freezing this day, we also wanted something a little heartier and decided on the Braised Beef Cheek In Red Curry ($14). The curry had a rich flavour and contained chunks of incredibly tender, melt-in-your-mouth braised beef cheeks. The server recommended we add a bowl of rice which was a great idea as the rice soaked up all the extra curry goodness. This curry sure hit the spot!Initially, this was all we had ordered. However, midway through the meal we thought about adding another dish and settled on the Hamachi Tartare – with rocket and avocado salad ($18). I’m really glad we decided on this as it turned out to be one of my favourite dishes of the evening. The hamachi was fresh and perfectly seasoned. The rocket complimented the tartare nicely and was a nice way to end it all.
After finishing off our last dish, we inquired about the dessert menu. The server told us there was only one dessert for the evening – the Black Rice Pudding ($7). Since we like ending our meals off with something sweet we decided to give it a try. It didn’t look like much but it was a delicious, comforting dessert. I love black sticky rice and the one at Foxley’s was no exception. My only complaint was the berries which topped it which I didn’t particularly care for. I think they had been soaking in some sort of alcohol. I would have preferred a scoop of vanilla ice cream which would have complimented the warm dessert nicely.There were a few dishes I didn’t love but for the most part, I had a great experience. It was a great spot to catch up with some friends. Since Foxley has such an enormous menu, I recommend coming with a few other people to maximize the number of dishes you can try. Just be sure to arrive early since they don’t take reservations and the restaurant fills up quickly on weekends.
At a glance:
• Asian-inspired tapas
• The 4 of us left hungry after spending $140 before tips
• No reservations
• Located on Ossington, just south of Dundas
• Warm, cozy atmosphere
Ratings (out of 5):
• Food: 3.5 stars
• Service: 4 stars
• Atmosphere: 4 stars