We’re looking forward to ringing in the New Year like never before. Pretty sure that we’d all like to put 2020 wayyyy behind us and push forward to a fresh start. We’re aiming to start off the year with a positive mindset. Although we will all be at home this New Year’s Eve we still are making plans to make it as special as we can. Take out is on our minds already and one restaurant has already caught our attention. GEORGE Restaurant will be offering a tantalizing New Year’s Eve menu complete with a guided dining menu walk-through experience led by Executive Chef Lorenzo Loseto via video link.
Chef Loseto was born in Bari, Italy, and was brought up by his Italian mother from whom he developed a passion for traditional Italian cooking. His passion for cooking also included schooling in classical French cuisine. And it didn’t stop there. Loseto also worked in Asian kitchens to expand his knowledge for global tastes and cooking techniques. Influenced by Toronto’s multicultural communities, combed with seasonal, natural, location and sustainable food, Loseto enjoys access to the city’s incredible markets.
GEORGE Restaurant is located in a 1850s heritage building that was once a chocolate factory. After an extensive restoration, the charming building breathed a new life and today includes Verity – a women’s club, offices as well as one of the most cherished restaurants in Toronto. Award-winning Chef Loseto opened GEORGE in 2003 and continues to be at the helm as Executive Chef to this day.
As the pandemic and city regulations toyed with the restaurant and hospitality industry this past year, GEORGE had to stay in step with protocols. The restaurant was locked down in March 2020 along with the rest of the city and was able to re-open in the summer for patio season. As the season transitioned into Fall the restaurant was fortunate to keep their 19-century outdoor courtyard as an “Autumn Cornucopia” while following Toronto Public Health restrictions. Now closed again for the current lockdown, the restaurant has had to reset once again. To keep GEORGE’s large and capable kitchen staff employed, have the best and freshest ingredients available, a new GEORGE-TO-GO menu is launched every Monday for the week ahead.
During the year, Chef also launched an artisanal line of Italian gelatos and sorbets under the name Alberobello. This is the result of his attending a gelato university in Bologna, Italy, a few years ago.
As an award-winning chef, Loseto’s passion is taking the freshest ingredients obtained locally wherever possible and creating mouth-watering dishes. Speaking of awards, he’s won the Ontario Gold Medal Plates multiple times and the prestigious Canada-wide competition twice.
Using his extensive background in many cuisines, he combines the ingredients into masterpieces of nuanced flavours and textures. Loseto adapted his favourite dishes which he created this year to work in a take-out format and has received many rave reviews on his GEORGE-TO-GO take-out offerings this past year. A few of these favourite dishes are also offered on the New Year’s Eve Menu.
Dishes at GEORGE are inspired by Chef Loseto’s own heritage and serves as the foundation but is also influenced with multicultural fusions marrying exciting flavours and techniques. GEORGE has always been that modern luxurious restaurant that is consistent in delivering masterpieces that turn heads. It’s that cool and confident friend that everyone looks up to and admires – it’s all about the subtle details and for any food lover in the city, GEORGE hits every mark and goes beyond expectations. Service has always been warm and friendly and many date nights were spent lingering in this inviting space as were celebrations and functions. Just thinking about it makes us miss it even more. We can’t wait to return in real life.
So, what is Chef Loseto most looking forward to in 2021? He tells us it’s for 2020 to be finished like the rest of us. As we look to the near future, we’ve also learned that GEORGE is planning to open a secret bar, Secrette, in 2021 which aims to be the best spot to cocktail in Toronto. A cozy and intimate speakeasy with a Parisian aesthetic. A 19-century room now ready with brick walls and stout wooden beams, with a copper bar and lusty, rich décor, it’s a gathering space for low music, joyful talk and luxurious lubrication. The Chef has created snacks and small plates using fresh and imaginative ingredients which he hopes will be the talk of Toronto.
While we’ll all be ringing in the new year at home what’s on Chef Loseto’s playlist?
The Lumineers, III
Bank on The Funeral, Matt Mason
An Awesome Wave , Alt-J
AM, Arctic Monkeys
Every Kingdom, Ben Howard
GEORGE Restaurant’s New Year’s Eve Special 4-Course Tasting ($100 pp). Participants will be able to zoom link to watch an online presentation of this special menu with Chef Lorenzo Loseto. Head Sommelier, Christopher Fulsom will also guide through the exquisite wine pairings. Wines by the bottle and Cocktails are available.
Curbside pickup or delivery options available.
Menu and pre-orders available here.