Thursday, 2 August 2007

ALLEN'S ~ Toronto, On

One thing great about the summer is impromptu gatherings and patios. Julianna, Jane and Elizabeth all got together for a random dinner on the Danforth. Taking cue from our co-worker Kate, who said that Allen's was a great patio to go to, we hopped on the TTC and headed to Greek town.

This was a much swankier pub than first thought. When we arrived, the patio at the front could hold maybe 6-8 people, with tables so tiny a plate would have problems fitting. We decided there MUST be a patio in the back. When we got inside we joked that it must have been Seniors night, because the crowd was in their 50's or older. We were seated in the back patio which is fabulous. Its long, with lots of tables, and several giant trees that they have built benches around for the seating. The menu was a LOT more upscale than we thought, with entrees starting at around $15. Fortunately the wings were not that much.

STYLE: deep fried
SAUCES: Manhattan Capone
SIZE: medium 0.5 /2
HEAT: 1/10
PRICE: $8.95 for 10 wings
SIDES: sour cream with bleu cheese crumble dip 1/7
TOTAL: 17/35

So here is the deal with Allen's wings: they pretty much fail on Lord of the Wings point scale, and this is why; the LOTW scale is based primarily on a traditional Buffalo style chicken wings - which gives little to no room for unique and/or non-traditional wings, which can be unfortunate for wings like this. Allen's serves what they call a "Manhattan Capone Wing" or (MCW) - there are no other flavours. The MCW sauce is a mixture of a bbq, honey garlic sauce, with a hint of what seemed like the Fox and the Fiddle's peppercorn brandy.

It was good, certainly a different tasting wing. I liked the sauce, but I would never make it my wing of choice on a regular basis. It was gooey and reminded me too much of honey garlic. The chicken itself was alright - the wings being a medium in size. They also included a dipping sauce on the side. It was sour cream, with bleu cheese on top. I find this slightly unusual because the original reason for bleu cheese served with wings was to temper the heat from the hot sauce ( MCW are not spicy at all however) and have evolved into a dip for celery and carrot sticks. I don't know why one would dip their MCW and lose all the flavour that they contain.

Of course, others in our group tried some different menu items. Julianna tried a chicken curry dish that she described as "pretty good, the right amount of heat- the sauce was a little too runny."

Both Elizabeth and Jane ordered the Caesar salad. I laughed when they came out because it was just full stocks of lettuce with sauce poured over - its funny how something that is toted as gourmet is actually just a lazy salad!

It did come with big chunks of Parmesan cheese, and the sauce tasted very homemade (much like my father makes). We also got two orders of sweet potato fries - which were thick cut and everyone seemed to enjoy them (I used the bleu cheese to dip them in instead of the plain sour cream that comes with the side dish).

It was a busy night, so the service was slow, but we didn't seem to be in any hurry. It was nice sitting in what felt like a crowded back yard, chatting it up with friends, watching giant leaves fall to the ground. A different type of wing made for a nice change. Allen's is a nice pub, but a little too rich for my blood.

TOTAL: 17/35

143 Danforth Ave

1 comment:

Maria said...

Allen's are my favourite. But I've always said they're not Buffalo style.