I have a love/hate relationship with U2. One can’t help but appreciate the talent of the four Irish boys even if it at times their music is clouded with political mumbo jumbo and the haze of enormous egos. Perhaps my opinion in this regard was somewhat softened when it was revealed in 2014 that Bono wears blue-blockers in front of the world’s dignitaries not to look like an assclown or in public in order to qualify for the Senior rate at the movies but because he suffers from glaucoma which he has for years. That said, it still doesn’t forgive the fact that they were found guilty of pure arrogance for their “Songs of Innocence” iTunes fiasco where they made the assumption that the entire world wanted their new album.
If one were to ask me my favorite U2 song from their vast library of music which spans a number of musical decades, I would have to say the live version of “Bullet the Blue Sky” off of the Rattle and Hum album. As far as bad songs, I’d say anything off the Zooropa album.
So what do Mark McEwan and Bono have in common? Probably nothing. One’s a singer and one’s a chef. One is moderately tall and one is moderately short. I imagine the two of them would interpret the word “edge” very differently. Maybe I can make a case by saying that the title “One” is not only one of U2’s biggest hits but also the name of Yorkville’s contribution to the McEwan eatery empire and that in fact Bono has been seen dining there during one of his many stops in Toronto.
I was there with a larger group and the night got started with a cocktail. In my case, it was the paper plane. Made with bourbon, amaro nonino, aperol and lemon juice and with a staggering price tag of $20, it was supposed named after the song (paper plane by MIA) the creator was listening to at the time. It certainly met my cocktail criteria in that it was pink ( a running joke regarding my normal choices). It came with a small fruit fly as well which I wasn’t overly concerned about given the warm weather. The waiter took it back with an apology and promptly replaced it.
For my starter I chose the
For the main I decided on the
Dessert was banana cream pie with peanut shortbread crust, malted chocolate pastry cream, butterscotch and vanilla chantilly and was a steal at $9. It was elegant and filthy at the same time. The fresh bananas were a smart addition as was the thin, crispy brittle on top.I also snagged a bite of the white chocolate cheesecake served with a sour cherry compote. It too was a bit bipolar; the comfort of Sara Lee on one side and a whimsy delicateness on the other.
I finished the night with one of the worst americanos I have ever had. If I’m paying $6 for a coffee, it better be mind blowing and not something that tasted like it came out of a Keurig.
I couldn’t help but hum a few U2 songs along with the lepers in my had while dining at One. From the clean and crisp decor to the pristine presentation and premium pricing, it’s a piece that fits perfectly into the Yorkville puzzle where the streets have names although it can take me a while to find what I’m looking for. The food and service was quite good highlighted by a really pleasant salad and the sinful dessert which was the sweetest thing. The coffee was bad. Although I couldn’t help but sing “One” when I got there, after a couple of sips of the paper plane I couldn’t help humming “The Fly” until the appetizer came.