Oy Vey Zmir! You should have seen the blonde(ish), botoxed beauties in five-inch Jimmy Choo’s doing a double take as they wiggled their way the to the chichi second floor patio of Kasa Moto.
Zane Caplansky, Toronto’s King of Smoked Meat, has made the move from the mean streets of College Street to the rarefied environs of Yorkville. He is literally muscling into territory currently owned by such upscale eateries as Café Boulud, Buca, and McEwan’s Hazelton One. It is a real gutsy, chutzpah move, and I hope he is a big success. Caplansky’s will certainly add some sizzle, hustle, and schmaltz to Cumberland, whose restaurants have become somewhat tired and dated.
I, for one, am with the Zane Man. Note the new entrance to Caplansky’s Deli: it looks like a chic murder scene with the yellow construction taping in front. I betting Zane will kill at this location.
I am normally a Greek yogurt, blueberries for breakfast, and a light kale salad for lunch kind of guy. But for Caplansky’s? I will happily fall off the vegan lite wagon and go back to my Montreal-based Snowdon Deli roots.
I highly recommend Caplansky’s classic Chicken-Matzo Ball soup and Cabbage Borscht. (See photos, below.) The Matzo ball, swimming confidently in a flavourful chicken broth, is surprisingly light. The Cabbage Borscht recalls that made by my Toronto grandmother from a recipe from the old country (Russian/Lithuanian). There is real love cooked into that Cabbage Borscht, a great comfort food in both cold and hot weather.
The smoked meat sandwich is, in my humble opinion, one of the finest in Toronto: meaty, fatty, a bit spicy, and moist. I could inhale these suckers for hours. (Of course, this would quite literally be my Last Supper.) Note Caplansky’s also has a terrific pickle and mustard bar, from which you can choose a variety of sweet and sour pickles and both hot and regular mustards. I also recommend their Meat Knish, which is a very light, delicious, and meat-filled thin pastry. And the meat gravy? Yummy.
The classic Breast of Turkey sandwich, complete with crisp greens, is also an appetizing and healthy alternative—definitely worth a shot. Follow that with a heaping basket of addictive, thinly cut fries. By this time, I am afraid that I had completely gone off the reservation. But it was all worth it at Caplansky’s.