Monday, January 02, 2017

A new year brings a new menu and chef to Toronto’s Italian pescatarian restaurant, Ufficio. Chef, Francesco Venditti, formerly head chef of Jamie's Italian Kitchen and Bar Buca, brings his vast experience to Ufficio by creating new and flavourful dishes that cross the line between traditional and non-traditional.   Venditti says "Adding cheese to fish brings the dish to a new level. For example having mackerel with stracciatella is not something you’ll see on other Italian menus but it will be a taste you will want to have over and over again.” His permissive approach allows for a vibrant and unique menu full of dishes that will have you coming back for more.

The most notable dishes on the new menu are the sustainably-sourced fish and seafood crudo as well as the grilled octopus with risotto nero and crispy calvo nero.  There is also an interesting Sicilian style arancini filled with octopus bolognese and buffalo boccincini served on top of warm bagna càuda.

Johnathan at Ufficio was extremely knowledgeable in every dish on the menu. His expertise and recommendations guided us on our dining journey making it quite the memorable experience! Here’s what we had:

Crudo Del Giorno - P/A

Rosemary & Garlic Focaccia - $3

Gamberi Fritti - Squid Ink Battered BC Striped Prawns with Spicy Aioli - $16

Arugula Fettucine - King Crab & BC Striped Prawns - $33

Zuppa Di Pesce All'Abruzzese - BC Clams, Mussels, Prawns, Trout, Tomato Brodo - $29

Brussels Sprouts  (Market Vegetables)

Panna Cotta

I don’t think any one dish stood out from the rest.  All were equally very light and tasty.  I think the main allure of the dishes at Ufficio is that they are Italian-inspired yet LIGHT. There are no heavy sauces and cheese as one would experience at a typical Italian restaurant.  Instead, sauces are kept light and simple, garnishes are fresh, batter is light, ingredients are local and none of the flavours are overpowering.  Creating food so simply delicious is the real task at hand and I applaud Venditti for doing such an impeccable job.

Pop into Ufficio this New Year to discover creatively delicious Italian pescatarian fare. Ufficio will also be taking part in Winterlicious this coming Jan 27 to Feb 9, 2017. 

Disclaimer: The food provided in this post was complimentary. However, all of the opinions expressed in this review are of my own.

Ufficio Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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