Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Midfield Wine Bar & Tavern

Saturday night I went out with a few people to a new bar at Gladstone and Dundas called Midfield Wine Bar and Tavern. While it doesn’t look like much from the outside, or really, the inside (check out these photos over on BlogTO), it is actually a charming little place that’s home to amazing service and some really tasty cheese. Oh, and the wine was pretty good too.

I should stop now and say that I don’t really know much about wine. In fact, I don’t even like red wine, which on Saturday meant I was the only one drinking wine by the glass. Everyone else at my table was splitting bottles of red, which were being expertly recommended by Christopher, sommelier and one of Midfield’s co-owners.

Christopher was tremendously friendly and helpful, offering both advice and tasting samples. He also really impressed the one wine expert in our group and I was really impressed at how while he explained our various options.

Those options actually weren’t that numerous (there’s a small specials menu, then a red and a white list that each featured nine-ten different choices) but I’m told that the key to a good wine bar is a well edited selection.

I tried two different kinds, the first of which I forget and the second of which I wrote down because I loved how it tasted, fruity, almost banana-y and on the sweet side (shut up, stop judging me). Unfortunately, this amazing product, a 2010 Viognier out of Niagara’s Fielding Estates, is not available in stores (though Christopher told me that the winery is located only 45 minutes away).

Prices are reasonable (I think the wine I was drinking was $10 a glass) though this is the type of place where the bill can add up fast. A very small selection of beer is also available but I didn’t see any signs of other alcoholic options.  

Currently, food offerings are quite minimal, just meat and/or cheese plates. For $25, you can have five different items and we went with two meats and three cheeses, all of which were quite tasty and quickly consumed. Like at Church Aperitivo, we weren’t given enough bread but when we asked, another basket was quickly produced.

When we arrived at Midpoint at about 8:45 pm, we found it to be just under half full. But by 10 pm the place was packed and the vibe had gone from mellow to party-time. Still, even at its fullest, Midfield remained an unpretentious and casual (so yes, jeans are fine).

I can see this becoming an increasingly busy spot, especially in the summer once its patio opens. There’s nothing quite like it in the neighbourhood and with its amazing service, I can see how it could easily become someone’s go-to spot. So if you do want to check this place out (and you should), go on the early side.

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