A new restaurant in Toronto is satisfying the city’s growing demand for modern Jewish cuisine. Though billed as a Middle Eastern restaurant, Fat Pasha serves favorite dishes spanning Israeli, Sephardic, and Ashkenazi cuisine.
Fat Pasha is the third restaurant from Anthony Rose and partner Robert Wilder, who on the website for one of their other restaurants describe themselves as “two jewish boys, raised as mommys’ boys, fathers of sons, lovers of no-bulls**t food.”
The new joint serves plenty of Middle Eastern fare, like hummus, lamb shoulder, tahini, labneh, Israeli salad, falafel, and a shawarma and mixed grill “Fat Pasha feast.” But it also has classic Eastern European dishes, some rarely seen on contemporary menus: flanken (short ribs), chopped liver “a la Sammies Roumanian” (a classic NYC restaurant), and latkes topped untraditionally with caviar.
And when is the last time you saw so much chicken shmaltz on a menu: in the gribenes (fried chicken fat), mixed tableside into the chopped liver, and even in the fried rice.
For dessert, Fat Pasha serves the Hanukkah favorite suffganiyot (fried jelly doughnuts), omnipresent Israeli sweet halva, and an ice cream sundae topped with halva.
Toronto has seen a renaissance of Jewish food in recent years. Caplansky’s has done for the city’s delis what Mile End did in Brooklyn; and S. Lefkowitz recently gave Toronto its first authentic hummus bar.