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Skin + Bones; Harvest Kitchen; Agave Y Aguacate

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Photo: Harvest Kitchen/Website

It's a solid 4 N's for Skin + Bones' brunch service. Introduced in December, NOW's Steven Davey is totally taken with the Leslieville supper club's elegant vibe, stellar eats, and ample "family-friendly" space. Brunch chef Tara Lee (former sous chef for Cowbell), pumps out multiple winners; among them, her tender eggs Benedict with "tender-pink pork belly porchetta, complete with cracklin'… and "a cheesy polenta purée laced with wilted kale" instead of an English muffin, "fried chicken breasts in buttermilk batter offset by crunch apple slaw," and "retro house-baked cinnamon buns." There is a ton more, and kids under five eat for free. [NOW]

The Toronto Star's Amy Pataki has come out swinging against Harbord Village's vegan-friendly Harvest Kitchen, saying diners are "ill-served by the careless and texturally challenged food." The laundry list of Pataki's disappointments – the "deliberately bland vegetarian green curry," "a hamburger patty the colour of deep space" – is thorough but not everyone agrees with her criticisms. While she dismisses the restaurant's "hopelessly mushy 'meatball' sandwich," BlogTO calls the dish a "surprise star," in a complimentary review from earlier in the year. Further down in the comments section, the jury is still out on whether Harvest Kitchen is great or, as Pataki writes, is "an earnest mess of burnt food." [Toronto Star]

The Globe and Mail's Chris Nuttall-Smith heads to Agave Y Aguacate and thanks chef Francisco Alejandri for including a pile of dishes he would never know to order, including the "poblano chile relleno (a whole stuffed, roasted chile)," the "ravishing" mess that is the "tostada de tinga," and "pollo en pipian rojo." But not all the adventures were favourable: The fish in the ceviche came out too tough, the shrimp cocktail is forgettable, and the seating options left the reviewer and his friend "hobbling by the time we left." [The Globe And Mail]