Grazing on a variety of tender green grasses on Bryan Gilvesy's YU Ranch
We, at Le Sélect, strongly believe that what we put in our body three times a day has an impact on how we feel. Since the art of cooking starts with a fresh and live product, we went looking at the source, roaming the province in search of food with flavour and nutrients, food that makes us or keeps us healthy, real food, issued from sustainable farming as well as sustainable aquaculture and fisheries, food grown without pesticides or synthetic fertilizers, food bred without hormones, growth promotants, or antibiotics.
Exploring the countryside we met small farmers, breeders, wine-growers, fishermen and other professionals whose enthusiasm was uncontainable, and whose knowledge was enlightening. People who strive to bring the freshest, the tastiest, the healthiest, the most natural ingredients to our food larders. Sometimes they were organic growers or farmers who had abandoned intensive agriculture and monoculture to return to traditional ways, or Mennonites, Amish, or natives.
Chef Laura Maxwell on "the piano"
Fish and seafood we serve are certified sustainable by reputable third parties such as OceanWise, SeaChoice or the Marine Stewardship Council. We also privilege organic ingredients, products from traditional farming, ethical husbandry, and seasonal gathering.
There is also free-roaming and grass-fed bison from Alberta, heritage-breeds pork from Ontario which we buy whole and which we use for our signature dish: la Choucroute Alsacienne.
Not only the menu changes seasonally, but the vegs change constantly, harmoniously paired with the dish. This allows us to take advantage of what is at its best at any given time. Come share the challenge and the excitement with us.
This is what brings people to Le Sélect such as Gordon Ramsay on a book tour, or Fergus Henderson, the celebrated British Chef widely credited for the rebirth of contemporary British gastronomy, and a pioneer of the “Nose to Tail” philosophy, or journalist and essayist Michael Steinberger in his quest for authentic French food.
The menu remains a work in progress as we continue introducing new ingredients. This makes it both challenging and interesting. Come share the challenge and the excitement with us.
Michael Steinberger, author and wine critic, enjoying a glass of organic Rosé de Provence
Michael Steinberger, wine critic and author of Au Revoir to All That: Food, Wine and the Decline of France who believes that one can find better and more authentic French food at Le Sélect and at other restaurants in New York and Japan than in France. “French cuisine is largely living in exile,” he said in conversation with the Globe and Mail’s Boyd Erman.
Why? Thanks to “a diaspora of chefs such as Daniel Boulud who carry the tradition forward, and also to legions of dedicated Francophiles who flock to places such as Toronto's Le Sélect Bistro, a city institution where La Marseillaise plays on the answering-machine greeting”.