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Loka Garners Grassroots Success

CHEF DAVE MOTTERSHALL’S CROWD-FUNDED RESTAURANT IS AN ECLECTIC ADDITION TO QUEEN WEST’S DINING SCENE

Loka-Restaurant-Toronto-Dave-Mottershall

photos: courtesy of Loka

One could argue that Loka represents the something close to the Platonic ideal of a modern restaurant. Chef and owner Dave Mottershall, who made his name at Charlottetown, P.E.I’s hyper-local bistro Terre Rouge, prides himself on running a zero-waste kitchen, buying whole animals and cooking nose-to-tail cuts with seasonally appropriate accompaniments. He’s also savvy about the Internet’s role in the contemporary dining industry: as @chef_rouge he’s garnered more than 40,000 Instagram followers; he also famously leveraged $40,000 in Kickstarter crowdfunding to help open his new Queen West space. Understated and casual, the smallish dining room now fills with a cross-section of Toronto foodies seeking easy-eating yet highly inventive dishes from Mottershall’s daily menu. Maple pork belly with creamed leeks was a recent highlight, while other features have included smoked bone marrow, lamb liver, pig’s head, duck breast and chicken hearts. There’s also a curing chamber with an oft-changing salumi selection, plus a few snacks for those of us seeking a quick after-work or late-night bite.  —Craig Moy

• Loka, 620 Queen St. W., 416-995-9639; Facebook page
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