[Photo: Bier Markt]
Bier Markt, the pub and beer garden that insists beer is bier, like all the time, is now open. The Toronto fast casual concept took over from Douze Vingt et Un in April. The space in front of the Bell Centre (or, soon, condos in front of the Bell Centre) was also home to the original Queue de Cheval, the famously brassy steakhouse that re-opens on de la Montagne sometime in 2014.
So what do we know about Bier Markt so far?
1) The restaurant chain likes to trumpet its beer, ahem, bier bona fides. A lot.
"Bier is art — an expression of passion and dedication — and we are committed to bringing you that art in as pure a way as possible. Through proper storage, care and pouring — including our unique keg system which features three different gas blends to ensure the perfect pour — we bring you Bier that tastes exactly as the brewer intended it to."
2) The beer menu is vast but not all that progressive, especially when it comes to Quebec beers.
3) The food is ... well, let Bier Markt explain.
"Every meal on our menu is built from scratch and designed to perfectly complement the Biers in our BIN. With more than 150 Biers from over 30 countries, our Bier curators will take you on a guided journey ensuring each dish reflects and harmonizes with the Brewers' work of art."
4) Translation: salads, oysters, charcuterie, burgers, chops, a smoked meat poutine, a lot of panko and, apparently, a whole roasted pig at $58 per person, minimum eight people, available with 48 hours notice.
5) The restaurant is huge - major blueprint porn alert.
6) Bier Markt is not your mom and pop pub. The restaurant chain is part of Toronto's Prime Restaurants Inc., which operates East Side Mario's, Casey's and Prime Pubs (Fionn MacCool's, D'Arcy McGee's and Paddy Flaherty's). The company may employ more executives than waiters.
7) The restaurant fancies itself a bit of a live music venue as well.
8) Per the usual procedure with a restaurant of this nature, management threw a party on Monday with a 'menu d'ouverture.' The usual gaggle of publicists, freelance journalists and food bloggers took full advantage.
@BierMarktMTL je retourne pour ma troisième portion de cochonnet !— boucheesX2 (@boucheesX2) December 10, 2013
· Bier Markt [Official Site]