To say we’re big fans of the Black Hoof would be an understatement. That little stretch of Dundas they occupy is one of the most mouth-watering in the city.
We still can’t think too much about the void left in our lives after the closing of the Hoof Cafe – aka the best brunch spot in Toronto (providing you aren’t vegetarian, vegan or kosher) – the pain of never having tried the foie gras French toast is still a little too fresh.
We were eager to see what Jen Agg and Grant van Gameran had up their sleeves next. With plans for Black Hoof & Co. delayed, Agg and van Gameran decided to open the Black Hoof Cocktail Bar in the former Cafe space.
Last week we popped in to try a few of Agg’s concoctions. She’s been defying our expectations of what a cocktail should taste like since the Hoof opened, so our hopes were high. Thankfully, these creations did not disappoint.
We sampled a variety of drinks: the Rosy Cheeks, a rose-infused gin with date syrup; the Corpse Reviver, a gin and lillet drink with absinthe rinse; a cumin Mojito, with crushed ice and loads of mint; and the old-standby Gin Martini (with olives for us, but you can have it dressed anyway you like). All of them were amazing, fresh and unique. Though not pictured, each drink comes in a glass appropriate to the flavours and traditions of the cocktail, and with inventive garnishes.
Currently the Black Hoof Cocktail Bar (923 Dundas St. W.) is open Thursdays to Mondays, 5:30 p.m. to last call. There’s none of the Black Hoof’s infamous charcuterie plates available, but you can pick up a cheese plate for snacking. Oh, and one caveat: If you’re looking for vodka, you’re in the wrong place. Jen Agg hates it and doesn’t serve it, so don’t ask.