Mildred's Temple Kitchen

Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Good food and good company is the best way I could sum up my time at Mildred's Temple Kitchen.

I'll admit that during my search for a suitable brunch place downtown, I was secretly hoping to try either Rose & Sons or Easy Breakfast, but I heard from a coworker that the pancakes from MTK were pretty good, so I thought, "Why not?" Besides, a 73% rating on Urbanspoon isn't shabby either, and I knew my friend Jody was fiending for some pancakes.

I do not regret the choice I made.

I've never been to the little area known as West Elm/Liberty Village, so even upon arriving there, it was a refreshing sight to see:

It was a cute little plaza/street of shops in an aesthetic that somewhat resembled that of the Distillery District, though not exactly either. It had a slight upperclass feel (not as overwhelming as Yorkville though) due to the modern style of certain shops, and it just seemed like a really chic place to be at. 

MTK had a small patio section outside, and lovely branding throughout their window decals and collateral.

I loved that they managed to incorporate chartreuse without being too drab, and the place had a sleek, minimalistic, modern style accompanied by its industrial looking base. Light flooded throughout the restaurant, and you just get this fresh yet down-to-earth feeling when you first enter the premises. 

Now onto the food...

Jody obviously ordered Mrs. Biedorhof's Blueberry Buttermilk Pancakes. And what a sight that was when her dish first arrived! It looked so enticing to try that I was more than happy to try some when Jody couldn't finish the rest.

What can I say? They do live up to the hype. Their pancakes, despite their thick and blubbery appearance, were actually quite soft, light and fluffy. Dipping it in the fallen whipped cream and blueberries made the taste that much better, and it almost had me wishing I had ordered this instead.

That's not to say that I wasn't happy with my personal choice either. I ordered Veda's Choice, which consisted of poached eggs, BĂ©arnaise sauce and my choice of smoked salmon sandwiched by a flaky croissant and some fresh leafy greens on the side. I liked that the croissant wasn't so flaky that it came apart so easily (that's my primary reason for preferring just a baked soft dough croissant as opposed to a baked flaky one), and the combination of the ingredients together... I can't even. The smoked salmon added just the right amount of savouriness without being too salty, and anytime there's well done poached eggs, I am one happy camper.  

At first, I was a bit perplexed by the greens at the side; I focused so much on the deliciousness that was the croissant that I wasn't quite sure if the greens were just a decorative element or if I was actually supposed to consume them. I didn't want to waste it either, so I gave it a try — it was a bit branchy and kind of awkward to eat at times, yet that didn't bother me too much. I thought that maybe they just kind of placed it there without any garnishing or sauce. I was wrong. The greens had a little oompf to their taste with the help of some subtle sweet-and-sour vinegar like sauce, which was nice. Not too overpowering that it felt disgusting (like that feeling of having too much sauce on your salad), but not too little that you wouldn't notice it at all. 

Mafalda ordered The MTK Burger (tomato relish, crispy tobacco onions, burger patty, served with fresh fries on the side), seeing that she loves burgers and couldn't resist. To be fair, she had a hard time deciding that maybe she should go out of her comfort zone and try The Manhandler instead. I was going to offer to get the latter so that she could try some, but I wasn't quite feeling steak today. It felt a little heavy for a brunch meal, even if we had our brunch super late at 2 pm :P In the end, she was really happy with her burger choice, going so far as to proclaim her love for its taste and joking that she would come back every weekend just for this little number :P She really appreciated the fact that MTK makes their burger buns fresh, and she enjoyed the special white dipping sauce on the side.

She also ordered their watermelon lemonade that I had the pleasure of getting a sip of. Freshly made, not too sour and not too sickly sweet in a cute mason jar, I wouldn't have minded in ordering one myself. 

Here are all our meals combined in one lovely photo :)

While I was pretty late, my two friends endured a length 45 + minute wait since I stupidly did not make reservations. They told me that service while waiting wasn't the greatest, but our waitress who helped us seemed to have redeemed MTK's reputation and restored positive spirits in my two friends. Our waitress was really friendly, smiling and joking intermittently, even asking where I got my backpack at one point! She even made recommendations that weren't asked for, such as the extra hot sauce for Mafalda's meal, which I thought was pretty nice of her. 

And lastly, the washroom at MTK is an unique experience all its own. 

Like the rest of the decor, their washroom was well furnished, modern and mostly white. What's interesting to note is that there is only ONE washroom, shared by both genders. I have never been to a co-ed public washroom ever. The idea is a little bizarre, and the fact that it is so clean boggles my mind (no offence). Another bizarre thing about MTK's washroom is that instead of say, the usual elevator music that you would usually hear at a restaurant, they were playing audio that sounded like it belonged in an airline flight. Somewhere inbetween I heard something about Air France, which confused me a lot. I thought I was in a washroom, not in an airplane? Ya, that was a little odd. 

All in all, I had a splendid time at Mildred's Temple Kitchen, of which I was already really happy to see my previous coworkers, to share laughs and news between the three of us. It was almost as if I had never really left them in the first place, and I truly missed their humour, their expressions/reactions and their personalities in general. They give me faith that not all my female friendships have failed, and seeing them after what feels like a long time definitely brightens my mood regardless. Here's to more food adventures, chilling, whatever to come!

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