UPDATE! The Royal York Hotel wrote me this email, “…your server should have offered the other menu at your request. I apologize that he did not offer to bring you the other menu. I will follow up with the EPIC managers in regards to this issue.” As a result, I have decided for the first time ever to change my review to four out of five wooden spoons. Good customer service like that should be rewarded and I will be back for High Tea!
In April my Auntie Laima came up with this great idea: why not go for lunch at the Royal York Hotel’s restaurant EPIC? I had only seen the front face of the hotel while down at the waterfront and probably walked by it along the street, unknowingly, dozens of times.
Go inside and actually eat in this beautiful and luxurious building? What a novel idea!
It would not be a Ridler sisters outing without us bringing along our cameras. This was my first date with my new camera so I was still getting used to it.
It is true, the building is absolutely breath-taking-ly beautiful. The golden light, the wooden ceilings, the stunning bouquets of fresh flowers… It invoked sighs.
Surprisingly, the restaurant EPIC is quite modern in comparison.
Jamie and Auntie Laima
Swooping banquet seating, blue glasses, artisan sugar cubes….
Shannon and me
Giant pillar columns with spring-green lighting and a breakfast buffet was still being served when we arrived.
I must admit, the menu was a disappointment. Auntie Laima and I both checked the lunch menu online and discovered many items we desired were not on the menu we were given. Specifically, the online lunch menu states there is a Tagliatelle Lobster served in a mysterious Aurora sauce but no such yummy beast could be found on the menu we held in our hands.
Our server had no idea what we were talking about when we mentioned the online menu. Turns out the EPIC lunch is different than the EPIC Lounge Lunch. WTF? So I ordered the burger.
I also ordered the seafood chowder and admit, this is the best one I have ever had. It actually tasted more like a bisque but that was fine by me. At least I got some seafood and it was stunning. Although the strings of alfalfa sprouts throughout really did not add to the textural experience. In fact, it was quite unpleasant. Still, the soup was absolutely delicious.
The sirloin patty was so huge, all I tasted during lunch was meat. The maple glazed onions, thunder oak Gouda… kind of got lost in the massiveness of meat. The sweet potato fries and the decaf coffee were excellent.
The most wonderful surprise for us was dessert. Shannon ordered a clever take on banana beignets and Jamie got a deconstructed passion fruit parfait.
Auntie Laima’s panna cotta was a thing of beautiful, carefully garnished with edible flowers.
I went for the heavy hitter… chocolate cake surrounded by a ring of white chocolate dusted with gold leaf. We were all in heaven and absolutely delighted by the desserts.
We had a beautiful once-in-a-lifetime lunch together that I will never forget. From the time we got in the elevator to the moment we left the Royal York Hotel, it was stunning.
Our server did not seem to know a lot about the menu but another gentleman came to our table after listening to our delighted chatter over the desserts to tell us all about their High Tea which (weather permitting) also includes a tour of rooftop where they collect their own honey. Before we left we strolled over to the room where High Tea is held and were enchanted.
Despite not getting to enjoy my Tagliatelle Lobster, I do look forward to finally truly experiencing a High Tea in such a fancy restaurant with little cakes and sandwiches. If the desserts we enjoyed were any indication how lavish High Tea would be, the day I lift up my pinky while downing a scone is one I can barely wait for.
I give our experience at EPIC
three and a half four out of five wooden spoons.