The Reveal – Lasa
The Gist: Lasa is a traditional Filipino quick service restaurant brought to you by the same owners of Lamesa.
While Lamesa creates modern and composed plates, Lasa brings the cuisine back to more traditional fare. The goal is "to bring more traditional Filipino food to the mainstream," says Chef Aaron Okada, with modern updates for the Toronto crowd. "We want to make it accessible for everyone."
Grub: Grilled ("Inihaw") items, veg dishes, stews, fried foods, Silog - all day breakfast, and dessert are available to eat in or take out. Everything is made fresh to order, and dishes are meant to share, except for the Silog.
Libations: In addition to water and pop, there’s calamansi juice to complete the Filipino experience.
Fixtures & Fittings: Cheryl Torrenueva, interior designer and host on HGTV of "Home Heist" and "Restaurant Makeover," brings together new trends and old traditions seamlessly. The former grocery store (owned by Lamesa's owner Les Sabilano's parents).
Off the Menu:
Grilled Pork Skewers ($2.50 each) Marinated pork gets covered in a sweet BBQ glaze, made in traditional Filipino style with 7 Up.
Crispy Tofu ($7) Wow. If you love tofu, you’ll be all over this. And if you’re not a fan, this dish will change your mind. Marinated and fried five spice tofu cubes (5 per order) boast an enticing exterior filled with crunch and spice. The veg dish is finished with peanuts, green onion, and chili.
Ginataan ($10, with 6 pcs. shrimp $14) Simultaneously clean and comforting, the large bowl features plump shimp, tender squash, and snappy green beans in a soothing coconut and miso broth.
Silog Combo Plate for One ($12) The ultimate meal no matter what time of day. Garlic rice, duck egg and mixed green salad, with your choice of bangus (milkfish), BBQ skewers, fried chicken or tofu. Get the milkfish done with vinegar. It will be your new favourite fish.
Halo Halo ($7.99) This colourful sweet explosion consists of shaved ice, evaporated milk, pieces of leche flan, sweet and gelatinized fruit (coconut, mango, or sugar plum), topped with ube (taro) ice cream. Ingredients are subject to change.
How Cool is This?! Filipino TV plays on the big screen all day, so no need to miss your favourite stories in Tagalog.
At the Stove: Executive Chef Daniel Cancino (also chef at Lamesa – he designed both menus), Head Chef Aaron Okada
Head Honcho: Owner Les Sabilano
Deets: The restaurant seats 24 guests, with take out also available.
Visiting Hours: Tuesday – Sunday 12pm-8pm
Map It: 634 St. Clair Ave. W. (near Wychwood)
Phone It In: (647) 343-1110
Check out our Facebook page for more photos.