This year, 7 Numbers on the Danforth offers a tantalizing 3-course dinner for Winterlicious 2011. On a quiet Tuesday evening, a few friends and I checked out this quaint corner restaurant on Danforth Avenue and Bowden Street.
Arriving at 7:30pm, the Italian restaurant was already packed with people. Wine-bottle-candle-holders lined the busy bar and the daily specials chalkboards covered this funky restaurants’ walls. A wooden picture frame dangled from the ceiling attached to Madonna’s La Isla Bonita LP.
Our waiter brought us a wire basket filled with bread to go with the standard Italian extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar, already on the paper covered potato-sack tablecloth. We were handed a swanky new iPad as a menu, very high-tech and impressive. The iPad has their entire wine list, tasting notes, and staff reviews of their wines.
To start I had Tagliere Deli Giorno; a selection of cured meats with hot foccacia and locally produced preserves (Translation: two pieces of warm focaccia bread with bacon and ham, and a handful of tasty pickled mushrooms). I really liked my starter, the cured meats were delicious.
My best friend, Margo, had Panzanella (a rustic bread salad), with Panettone croutons, pearl bocconcini, roasted red peppers, fennel, cucumber and tomatoes. She enjoyed this elaborate and colourful salad.
For our main course, Margo and Manney both had Tagliata Con Caponata: a Grilled 4oz New York Steak, aged 6 weeks, served on caramelized onions and topped with an eggplant relish. As a side, Manney had Cavolini Di Bruxelles Con Pancetta —pan-fried brussel spouts with pancetta. Both loved the succulent, yet small, New York Steak.
I had Guanciale Stracotto, a delicious dish of beef cheeks and fava braised in red wine. For a side, I chose Finochhio Al Forno, fennel grain with pecorino and lemon. I found the side a little spicy for my liking, but I absolutely loved the beef cheeks… even though, throughout the meal, Margo kept nudging me and whispering the lyrics to Irving Berlin’s song ‘Cheek to Cheek’. The beef cheeks were so soft and juicy, smothered in a fantastic red wine sauce.
Unfortunately, the tiramisu was all sold out, so, for dessert, we all opted for the flourless chocolate cake. A little sliver of decadent heaven arrived promptly for each of us. While the food was great overall, our waiter seemed to forget all about us. We had to continuously ask for more water, and he never once checked on us. Also, 7 Numbers does not accept debit cards. They only accept cash or credit card, a slight inconvenience.
Overall, we really enjoyed our dinner at 7 Numbers and I give it an 8/10.
Authentic Southern Italian
3-course dinner, $25
307 Danforth Avenue East
Closest subway station: Chester
Check out cooking classes with owner Rosa Marinuzzi held the last Monday of each month at the Eglinton location ($75 per person, 516 Eglinton Avenue West).