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The King of Denmark at Cava for Limited Time

June 14, 2013 | By More

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Inspired by classical Scandinavian traditions but using Canadian ingredients, the King of Denmark installation consists of sixteen services of lunches running Thursdays through Sundays from 11:30 AM – 1:30 PM until June 23rd.  A radical departure from the Iberian and Mexican influences Chris McDonald and Doug Penfold currently work with, The King of Denmark will be created each day at Cava restaurant, in midtown Toronto.  The theme is Smørrebrød – the classic, Danish open-faced sandwich – and the menu will offer ten variations utilizing seasonal ingredients served on the Nordic staple: a house-baked, organic sourdough rye bread.

“My fascination with the flavours of Denmark stems from the fact that our high latitude climate is so similar to theirs: the same wild foods grow here and there, and we face the same seasonal challenges of eating locally,” explained Chef McDonald.  “The difference, of course, is that Denmark has a thousand years of culinary tradition that can guide us. Technique is the key to eating locally through four seasons; in Denmark, as in the Canada of our ancestors, ingredients are pickled and salted and fermented to last the year.  It is from here that we have gleaned our inspiration,” he added.

To find the best ingredients, chefs McDonald and Penfold have raided Canada’s cupboard from coast to coast, bringing in shrimp and seashore honey from the Gaspé, and wild, northern flavours such as balsam fir (to pickle apples), dulse and cloudberries. They turn old favourites like cured salmon, lightly smoked Spanish Mackerel and rare roast beef into something really fun to eat. Think jellies infused with akvavit, and soup scented with hay. Even donuts (because we are in Canada, after all) are elevated into something special: fritters are stuffed with foie gras and served next to a blackcurrant compote.

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The chefs and their skilled team will be creating uniquely flavoured grain spirits to complement the classic Nordic akvavit and rare beers to pair with their menu.  Smørrebrød will be priced from $6 – 12, with an offering of soups, salads and desserts. Samples of Smørrebrød options include: asparagus in leek vinaigrette, bonito butter, poached egg and crispy leeks; sauteed BC side-stripe shrimp with sorrel and basil; rare roast beef and potted pork with peppercress, pickled red onions and cloudberry mustard; and gravad lax with seashore honey-celeriac butter and balsam fir “pickled” apples.

For several years running, Cava has been named in “Toronto’s Top Ten Restaurants,” by noted critic, Joanne Kates.  The 50-seat neighbourhood restaurant is a modern interpretation of a Catalan tapas bar, offering casual food, well-crafted cocktails and an extensive wine list. In addition to offering intriguing international and local wines and some lesser-known varietals, the list showcases wines by the glass, half bottle options and no corkage on Sunday evenings.  Chef Chris McDonald and Doug Penfold apply innovative techniques in the kitchen, taking familiar Iberian-inspired flavours and dishes and presenting them in their unique style featuring local indigenous ingredients, seasonally.

Cava is located at 1560 Yonge St., Toronto, Ontario. For more information visit www.cavarestaurant.ca, (416) 979-9916 or follow on Twitter @thekingofdk.

King of Denmark will be open for lunch until June 24th from 11:30 AM– 1:30 PM Thursdays to Sundays. Reservations are recommended.

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Category: Food, Places

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