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Wildfire on a Coupon

Vinnie Vidimangi | Mar 8, 2011 02:21 PM

I was hungry (dieting) and looking forward to a treat. I forgot that the coupon was for $60 and went to Wildfire (Yonge north of Lawrence) for lunch alone. On discovery, I felt obliged to use up the coupon. Chicken vegetable soup $8, burger with sweet potato fries$18, soggy spinach plop $6, chicken supreme on mashed potatoes with six thin green beans$18, flourless chocolate rectangle $10. That's $60. Plus HST and tip.

Simple dishes but the cooking on every plate was talentless, clumsy and flawed. Some of the items did not conform to the description on the menu. I would have been irate had I paid full price; indeed, even at half price, I would have preferred to have stayed at home and kept to my diet. I am happy that I hadn't brought a guest as I had intended when I got the coupon; I would have been embarrassed.

Simple cooking doesn't have to be this way. I can expect in a simple working man's place in France that everything will be good- well, perhaps an occasional boo-boo. But such thoroughgoing mediocrity and worse at Wildfire and at such prices! And they seem to have success. A very large room, lavish decor, and established for years.

I smiled when I saw the group of wine feinschmeckers swirling glasses .

What is going on? And this isn't the only fancy steakhouse like this.

I should tell briefly why I didn't like the food.

Soup. Shredded chicken with vegetables in a tomato broth. Came nuked. Good sized portion, but full of chick peas. Either put in much more chicken and make something like a stew, or make the soup lighter. Uncertain about the taste because I ate it too hot, but it didn't seem to have promise..

Burger plate. Meat was said to be ground Sterling striploin. Uninteresting and quite mild, I would have wondered if the beef had been mixed with veal. I think previously frozen; edge off the taste. House made BBQ sauce, which I found offensive and overwhelming. The poor Sterling cow! After one bite I scraped off the sauce from the (top of) of the bun, After another bite I abandoned the top. I left off the" marble cheddar cheese". Either the sauce would have destroyed the cheeese, or both would have hopelessly overwhelmed the meat. Maybe both. Second rate pickle slice. Thin, inoffensive bun, principle virtue, kept my hands clean.
Sweet potao fries. Crisp, but a disappointment to someone who likes sweet potatoes.
A soggy spinach plop, which was another $6.

Chicken supreme. Menu said Piri- Piri, on garlic mashed potatoes. no Piri Piri, but some sort of tan gravy on the chicken, but the gravy was the best part of the dish. Tasteless chicken . The potatoes had been way, way overloaded with nutmeg. I left the potatoes even though I like both nutmeg and potatoes.

Flourless chocolate cake with fruit. An uninteresting brick. The fruit was three blueberries and a sliver of strawberry . Nothing more interesting on the dessert list.

VVM

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