The Counter, housed in Toronto's new Thompson Hotel, is the first out of its three restaurants to open. The 24 hour (!!!!!) diner, with its entrance on Bathurst, is still flying a bit under the radar - which is a good thing. Or, everyone is just going at 3am, drunk, looking for some unhealthy yet delicious post bar eats. And that's just what I got (minus the drunk part) dropping in recently for post work eats.
The space is modern, but also tries to give off a bit of a throwback feel. The booths are comfortable and spacious, and the restaurant is actually quite large. There's an entire section with the bar and TV screens that I didn't notice until leaving. And yes the food may be pretty unhealthy, but that's why you're at a diner to begin with, so suck it up!
Had to try the double mac & cheese and the loaded poutine with smoked meat. Jeff took another route - wanting to be healthy at first, but then caving for the po'boy sandwich (with fried shrimps). The bread was a letdown for Jeff - too soft. The mac and cheese on the other hand was pretty much perfect. Perfect amount of breadcrumbs, perfect amount of cheese, perfect amount of truffle flavour and the perfect size. I couldn't finish it, even with Jeff's help, but if a number of people are sharing it, perfect. If I were to add something - I would say bits of bacon or prosciutto. It came with some sort of prosciutto chip, but it was kinda awkward to eat. The smoked meat was a nice addition to the poutine. The American owner of the Thompson came by our table to see how our meal was and commented on how we all love our poutine in Canada. Yes, we do!
Oh, and also impressive was the chilled glass for my beer. I was planning on just chugging from the bottle but come on, a chilled glass, I can work with that!