Thursday, December 15, 2016

La Société: Brunch with Belle Époque Parisian Flair





Inspired by the lifestyle and cuisine of 1920’s Parisian bistros, the owners of La Société - Charles Khabouth and Danny Soberano - travelled to Paris with designer Alessandro Munge, to visit authentic French bistros, boulangeries, cafés and patisseries to explore ideas for their venue La Société, which opened in 2011 on the second floor of the Colonnade, in the space previously occupied by Dynasty Chinese Cuisine. The most spectacular feature at La Société is the custom designed stained-glass ceiling which crowns the restaurant's elegant dark mahogany interior, complete with intimate alcoves of brass and deep red leather banquette seating, a long French-imported zinc bar, and elaborate black, white and gold mosaic floors custom crafted by 29 tile workers that Khabouth flew in from Montreal to create the look of a belle époque Paris bistro. La Société’s large windows also provide a canvas for traditional hand-painted bistro signage which alert savvy shoppers that there’s a hot new venue on Bloor. English-born chef Ben Heaton heads up the kitchen with a tantalizing menu that offers a modern slant to French bistro classics such as Seared Foie Gras, French Onion Soup, Duck Confit, Steak FritesShort Rib Cassoulet as well as an enormously popular weekend Brunch menu featuring Butter Poached Lobster Benedict with hollandaise sauce and pommes Lyonnaise, Croque Madame, Pain Au Chocolat and of course limitless Cava, Mimosas and Bloody Caesars for just $35 a pop — c'est magnifique!



The beautiful interior of La Société with twinkle-lit Christmas trees and spectacular custom designed stained glass ceiling

La Société’s interiors feature built-in furnishings outfitted in rich mahogany, custom marble mosaic tile floors, aged leather banquette seating and custom art installations

Charles Khabouth brought in 29 tile workers, many of them from Montreal, to complete the spectacularly elaborate black, white and gold mosaic floors in La Société dining room and bar

Tea towel-style napkins are a lovely touch to the table setting 

The Brunch menu

Mimosas are a great start to any Sunday morning

Bloody Caesar with a sprig of dill and squirt of lime

A perfect warm, flakey and squishy butter croissant

Black and white attired servers bring a French élan to the bistro

Eggs Florentine with pommes Lyonnaise

Braised Short Rib Hash with poached eggs, hollandaise and pommes Lyonnaise

Café au lait

Butter Poached Lobster Benedict with hollandaise sauce and pommes Lyonnaise

Buttermilk Pancakes with blueberries, maple syrup, whipped butter and lemon zest 

Vintage Toni-Kola poster 

The French belle époque-inspired front doors with handpainted logo

Executive Chef Ben Heaton











Scalloped Sweet Potatoes
Serves 12
Recipe courtesy of Ben Heaton, Executive Chef La Société

2 tbsp olive oil
3 red onions, thinly sliced
1 tsp Keen’s mustard powder
4 sweet potatoes, peeled and sliced with a mandoline 
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp each mace, nutmeg and pepper
2 cups Lancashire cheese, finely grated
1  1/2 cups chicken broth
1 cup whipping cream
Pea shoots for garnish

In a large pan, caramelize the onions in oil with mustard, stirring often, for 50 minutes. Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter a 9-by-13-inch baking dish and layer potatoes in the bottom. Sprinkle spices, 1/3 of the onions and 1/2 cup of the cheese. Repeat twice, reserving 1/2 cup of the cheese for topping. Pour the broth and cream overtop, and press down with your hands to distribute the liquid. Cover with foil and bake for 1 hour. Remove the foil and raise oven to 450°F. Top with reserved cheese and bake for another 5-10 minutes, then let rest for 30 minutes.