Situated atop Yonge Street's historic Dineen Building, built in 1897 and just south of Queen Street West, is The Chase, a beautiful top-floor restaurant built like a rectangular prism of black glass with breathtaking views of downtown Toronto. With sister restaurant The Chase: Fish and Oyster snugly located on the ground floor, both venues were superbly renovated by Audax Architecture, the company behind the Origin restaurants in the Bayview, Church and Wellesley, and Liberty villages, the refurbishment of the shops of Summerhill, and the Scrivener Square Pavilion.
Night View Main Dining Room by Renée Suen
The elegant gold lighting fixtures, exposed yellow brick, and intricate ceiling mouldings make the atmosphere feel intimate and warm. The luxurious and specially picked chairs are not the only high-end elements of décor — from the marble floors to the flowers to the vast wine coolers that are visible from every part of the restaurant, everything is top-of-the-line. No expense has been spared to make the restaurant elegant and a stand-out among Toronto competitors.
Wine Room by Renée Suen
Although its name brings game to mind, The Chase flourishes as a seafood restaurant. Of special note is the dish of Japanese-inspired raw big eye tuna seasoned with tamari soy and served with a fresh artichoke and kohlrabi salad, sesame, avocado, and crushed edamame ($22), or sweet caramelized scallops served with crunchy peas, quinoa, braised ham hocks, and mint-scented lemon-almond relish ($33). No detail is missed with The Chase's particular menu options. Among meat and pasta selections, they have chestnut- and foie gras–stuffed ravioli with brussels sprouts and roasted rabbit saddle ($28) or rack-roasted lamb with millet arancini ($44). For a taste of both worlds, try the rich veal tenderloin and butter-poached lobster, drizzled with a sweet potato purée ($57). Even the vegetables you dreaded as a child are treated as delicacies at The Chase — who can say no to brussels sprouts when they're roasted with bacon, sour cream, and short bread ($10)?
Library Bar/Wine Room/Kitchen by Renée Suen
My appreciation of the food was slightly diminished by the fact that it took so long to arrive at the table. Although the service at The Chase is certainly not bad, it isn't exemplary either, and it certainly takes its time. If you eat at The Chase, do not expect to get in and out anywhere near quickly, and hope to be accompanied by someone with good conversation. You should also expect to pay — The Chase provides a luxurious experience that is worth every penny, but we should nevertheless point out that we are talking about quite a large number of pennies.
Lobster by Renée Suen
Overall, The Chase is a lavish dining experience that you should not miss. But, if you're looking for something more low-key, Fish & Oyster is right downstairs.