September 2, 2014
Jan 8, 2013
02:45 PM

First Look: Dyne, Yorkville’s new Iberian-Asian restaurant

Dyne opened earlier this month (Images: Ray Lontoc)

Taking over the space recently vacated by Maléna is Dyne, a new restaurant that offers up a unique blend of Iberian and Asian cuisines, or more specifially, a mix of Filipino, Portugese and Spanish-inspired dishes. Still, don’t call it fusion.

“Dyne is not fusion,” says owner Richard Andino. “I hate that word.”

With over 20 years in the restaurant industry, Andino — formerly the chef/co-owner at Flow — has ventured elsewhere in Yorkville, opening up Dyne at 120 Avenue Road. It may seem like a play on words referring to one’s restaurant experience, but Dyne is actually Andino’s nickname.

The menu is straightforward mix of simple hot and cold dishes, but, as Andino says, the focus is on execution.

Cold dishes include the crudo ($20), which sees raw slices of hamachi and tuna accented with pickled onion, pea leaves and black vinegar vinaigrette, or the salt cod ($11), which is grilled and served with sweet cherry tomatoes, tomato water and an olive-lemon vinaigrette.

The hot dishes are a mix of Andino’s favourites, such as the grilled Cornish hen ($23), which is spiced piri piri-style with four chilis (most notably habanero and Thai chili) and accompanied by roasted confit potatoes, tomatoes and roasted garlic.

For the extravagant, Dyne also offers up the Chef’s Last Meal ($325), a concoction of Andino’s personal requests should the day arrive; a feast that includes dry-aged rib eye steak, two pieces of foie gras, butter-poached lobster, chili-garlic rice, seasonal veggies and more.

Dyne tries to source ingredients within a 100 km radius (the steak is sourced from the Kawarthas) and uses organic foods as much as possible.

In terms of drinks, a take on the old fashioned known as the Eighteen Eighty ($13) is a concoction of bourbon, orange, sugar and cherry, and the St. Kitts & Nevis ($10) is a twist on the mojito, filled with guava juice, white rum, fresh lime and mint.

Some of the finishing touches of the interior are still being ironed out, but the décor is clean and linear, with a few circular ceiling lamps breaking up the visual plane. In Andino’s words, the look is “nice and exact, but not pretentious — just like the food.”

A large art piece anchors the main dining room; a work that’s special to the owner as it is stylized after a Japanese knife he has owned for over 23 years. Interestingly, the back wall also has two peek holes allowing diners to get a view into the raucousness of the kitchen.

A playlist of Andino’s favourite music also sets the unpretentious tone of the atmosphere, playing anything from Bon Jovi to Bob Marley to The Killers to Drake.

Dyne, 120 Avenue Rd, 416-962-5655

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