Unlike many of the restaurants in the Financial District, The Gabardine located at Bay St & Richmond St W, is a small and cozy restaurant with a relaxing atmosphere. White brick walls, old newspaper cut-outs framed, hanging lights, and a white tin ceiling; I liked the ambiance. When I arrived at noon, the place was fully packed but luckily Jess and Jacob arrived early and grabbed a table already ;) The Gabardine doesn’t take reservations for lunch time and they’re closed on the weekends, so do keep that in mind.
The noise level is high, tables are arranged close to one another, and the wait staff are bustling to accommodate customers’ requests; what a lively place. Their lunch menu consists of snacks, salads, sandwiches, and mains. Your cravings for a philly cheese steak, a chicken pot pie, or even rabbit rillettes can all be satisfied here.
Since I was starving and knew I wanted something hearty on this rainy day, I ordered the fish pie with clams, mussels, arctic char, smoked trout, mashed potato & buttermilk biscuit ($20). The deconstructed fish pie in front of me looked promising, and I couldn’t wait to dig in (but of course I had to fight the urge and quickly take a few shots of it first ;)). As expected, this was one hearty pie alright. The variety of seafood along with the rich, creamy mashed potato was satisfying and comforting in every way. Another component in this dish that simply cannot be ignored is the fresh dill on top. So flavourful and aromatic, yet not overwhelming; it added a nice tanginess to the entire dish. The buttermilk biscuits, however, were on the salty side for me. Although I was extremely hungry at the beginning of the meal, I couldn’t finish the fish pie due to the large portion!
Jess had the fish tacos ($18); they looked so moist and delicious. Jess said she enjoyed them :)
Jacob went with a pulled pork bahn mi ($14) and it was ginormous! Eating it was a challenge itself as the mountain of filling got all over the place :) The bahn mi is definitely something that I would order in the future!
Despite the busy lunch crowd, service was friendly and welcoming, and they always made sure our glasses were filled. Greetings, smiles, and attentiveness, we appreciated all of that. I look forward to trying some of their other menu items at my next visit!
372 Bay St.