Located on Dundas, just west of Dovercourt, Quinta has been serving up Portuguese fare since it opened up last summer.
The restaurant is easily missed as there isn’t very much signage on the outside. The décor is quite minimal inside too like many of the restaurants popping up around the city. But unlike all the other new restaurants, they’ve got a spacious dining room. It seats 60 people and it’s not at all cramped.
Quinta’s menu is on the small side but they’ve got quite a few daily features so make sure you check their chalkboard before ordering. I won’t be able to comment on the authenticity of the food since my Portuguese experiences don’t extend beyond Portuguese custard tarts…but I’ll definitely be able to comment on their taste factor! So, here goes…
Our first appetizer was the Octopus Salad – braised octopus, mini red potatoes, smoked paprika vinaigrette and yellow beans ($14). The pieces of octopus were well cooked and I loved the combination of it with the chunks of potatoes and crunchy yellow beans. The smoked paprika vinaigrette complimented the octopus well and made for a great way to start off the meal.
Our other appetizer was the Duck Confit Wings – piri piri and served with pickles ($12) which came with two drums and two flats. The meat was really tender, falling right off the bone. The flats weren’t very meaty but they were extra crispy which I liked. They were generous with the delicious sauce, resulting in a really messy dish. Not first date food!
For my main, I went with the Pork & Clams – crispy pork belly, little neck clams, veggies, cooked in a seafood broth ($20). It arrived in a clay dish with five large clams and five thick pieces of crisp pork belly which gave the dish all the salt it required. All the components sat in a light seafood broth which I enjoyed. The only part of the dish I didn’t care for were the bits of diced veggies which didn’t add much to it all.
Mike ordered the Seafood Cataplana – selection of seafood gently cooked in a white wine tomato broth (market price). The price of this dish varies depending on the selection of seafood for the day – ours cost $25. We were both surprised at how generous they were with the seafood. Everything was so plentiful! Lots of shrimp, clams, baby octopus and fish which were all perfectly cooked.
Included in the dish were fennel, mushrooms and garlic which gave the tomato broth a lovely flavour. Every bit of the broth was soaked up with the accompanying bread.
Amongst the dessert choices are a ginger molasses cheesecake, poached pear in a custard tart and a cheese plate. We went with a more conservative choice, the Flourless Chocolate Mousse Cake ($8). It was sweet, rich and smooth. I recommend having it with an Americano.
Overall, I enjoyed my experience at Quinta. While I enjoyed the food, what made it an even better experience was the service. The owner was out and about in the dining room, conversing with all the customers. His passion really comes through when you’re talking to him…You can’t help but like him!
At a glance:
• Serving up Portuguese cuisine
• Small menu but they have quite a few daily features
• Brunch is served on the weekends
• Closed on Mondays/Tuesdays
• Located on Dundas, just west of Dovercourt
• Great service, very personable owner
Ratings (out of 5):
• Food: 4 stars
• Service: 4.5 stars
• Atmosphere: 4 stars