Francophiles, rejoice! If you're on the lookout for delicious pastries, salads, quiche, and perhaps just the right cup of cafe, then you'll want to make the Financial District your destination. A taste of Southern France has arrived at First Canadian Place....via Manhattan. Super-popular Soho Bakery and Cafe Maman has opened it's second location here in Toronto, and there are so many reasons to be excited about that. (Most of them contain butter, and lots of it.)
I was recently invited to a special Bastille Day Brunch to celebrate the launch of Maman, and days later I'm still craving more. The space is ridiculously charming - all sun bleached whites and bursts of blue just like you would look for in Provence, I assume - especially considering that it's in nestled in one of Bay Street's big towers. There's a gorgeous communal table, plus additional seating inside and out on the patio. It's not a surprise that the food is so delicious. amongst the impressive team behind this new venture is Chef Armand Arnal of Michelin-starred La Chassagnette in the south of France. Everything from the Blueberry, Lavender and White Chocolate Cake to the Roasted Kale and Summer Squash Quiche to the Arugula Salad with Feta and Roasted Corn Nuts (!) left me wanting seconds. Coffee by Brooklyn's Toby's Estate and Sloane Teas also score major points. There was also a Lavender Hot Chocolate that will probably become my go-to once it's cold out. Last but certainly not least are the "famous" (for good reason) nutty chocolate chip cookie. I could get poetic about these cookies: generously sized, crispy chewy on the outside, moist and oozy with dark chocolate one the inside. They are, to me, everything a cookie should be.....which is to say more of a vehicle for chocolate than anything else. They are kind of perfect, and truly dangerous.
The place was absolutely packed while I was there, and it's easy to see why. Maman is open for breakfast and lunch, as well as for cinq a sept with a cocktail menu as mouth-watering as those darn cookies. (My god, those cookies are going to become a vice of mine, I just know it.) Even more reason for those that live or work downtown to linger.
Maman is located at First Canadian Place, 100 King Street West, Mezzanine Level