BAR BUCA, Toronto, Ontario
Chef/owner: Rob Gentile
Website: www.barbuca.com. Cuisine: Italian.
Telephone: 416-599-2822. Twitter: @barbucatoronto
2015 Rank: 40. 2014 Rank: 12
Price Range: $3-$14, small plates and snacks
You Must Order: Polpette di Capra ($14), which is Sicilian-style goat and ricotta meatballs.
Need to Know … from John Placko, Culinary Director of Modern Culinary Academy: “In one word, outstanding. The pastries here are the work of the brilliant pastry chef Cora James. It's the draw for me with the section of breakfast pastries but also the dessert selection which as about seven items that are all technically brilliant. What I like about Bar Buca is the fact that you can watch the chefs assemble the plates. Like Buca, almost everything is made in-house including the fish sauce. I always learn something new about ingredients when I visit here. Italian heritage meets the clever mind of Rob Gentile in what becomes a grazing style of dining. The menu has six distinct sections and I always pick one from each, plus the pastry section. Never had a disappointing dish.”