Restaurant: Paramount Fine Foods
Location: 1250 Bay Street, Toronto, ON M5R 2A7
Price Range: $$
I can’t recall when were the last time I visited Paramount, but I remember back then I didn’t enjoy the food as the ingredients didn’t feel fresh or it wasn’t as flavorful as I expected it to be. Well I’m glad to say with my most recent visit, they have changed my mind! This year Paramount introduced their largest menu expansion yet, including an entire new look and they delivered!
I was invited a few weeks ago to sample some of the new dishes by Paramount. Located in Yorkville – which is one of the most fanciest area in Toronto, this location of Paramount was modern with natural wood decor, leather and featuring an open kitchen concept.
Raymond (TravellinFoodie) and I decided to each order a drink, and I believe the Jellab (right) is only available at specific locations. Though both drinks were a tad too sweet for my taste, they were incredibly refreshing and perfect for hot summer days. My favorite was the Paramount special as I loved the fresh fruits and ashta cream (seriously where can I buy a tub of this?). I also liked how you are getting different textures from the almonds to the soft cream that had a similar texture to cheese. The Jellab was only available at specific locations and I didn’t like it as much as the rose water was quite artificial for my taste.
The warm, soft and spongy pita bread was the perfect vessel to dip in the hummus (below). These were quite addictive and I’m glad I had such a good self-control to have only 1 pita! 🙂
The mezza plate had equal portions of Paramount’s famous hummus, mautabball and tabbouleh. I must say though, out of the 3 dips I was quite disappointed with the tabbouleh (middle) as it had no distinct flavor. Otherwise the hummus and moutabbal (on above picture) were delicious, in particular to the moutabbal as it had a smoky depth that was different than the hummus.
Though the chicken was bit too dry for my taste, I appreciated how the fries were not seasoned heavily as it was the perfect base for the garlicky tahini sauce.
The saj wraps were served Tabliyeh style and each wrap were packed with plenty of juicy shredded beef – the tortila-thin saj bread was also slightly toasted to get a crispy exterior. The garlic sauce was creamy and had this gooey texture that reminded me of cheese. The acidity from the pickles and turnips were much needed to refresh the palate and the platter also came with a generous portion of fries as well.
Being the first seafood addition to Paramount’s menu, I was pleasantly surprised at how perfectly cooked the shrimps were with a lovely light char on them. The fragrant tomato garlic sauce was the highlight with just a touch of spiciness to oomp’ed up the dish. Just like the the platter above, the BBQ shrimp also comes with turnips and pickles, along with a side of fragrant basmati rice. If you don’t know what to order at Paramount, I highly recommend this dish!
Best eaten doused in sweet rose syrup, the Sh’aibiyat had a crispy beautiful pastry and light ashta cream filling. Seriously, that ashta cream just somehow make everything delicious.. I regret putting a bit too much rose syrup though as the rose fragrance overpowered the pistachio.
Overall I am liking the new concept of Paramount Fine Foods and their approach to improve the quality of the ingredients, while keeping the authentic Middle Eastern flavors. All menu items are made fresh in-house daily and meats are certified halal and Ontario raised. As Paramount Fine Foods continue to expand, I’m looking forward to the future menus and each new venture. Did you know that Paramount has partnered with Just-Eat to offer home delivery? You can now enjoy Paramount’s authentic Middle Eastern flavors right at home!
Disclaimer: While the food was provided by Paramount Fine Foods, I am not obliged to publish a review on the business. All opinions/thoughts are my own. For more information about my review policy, please click here.