Toronto restaurant that opened with huge hype has closed and been replaced


A Middle Eastern-inspired restaurant in Toronto known for its vegetarian menu and airy open kitchen has permanently closed, and it's already been replaced by a new business. 

Shook, previously located at 77 Portland St., drew inspiration from the open-air markets in Israel, also known as a "shuk," and cooked its dishes over an open fire using a hand-laid wood-burning hearth and charcoal grill. 

On the menu, you'd find a variety of dips including whipped feta, muhammara, labneh, and large mains like red or green shakshouka, mujadara, and eggplant and mushroom kebab.

The plant-based restaurant has now been replaced by Maxime's, a swanky new restaurant that specializes in steak, seafood, and signature cocktails.

Starters at this Parisian nightlife-inspired restaurant include market-priced oysters, salmon crudo, ahi tuna carpaccio, lobster ceviche, and jumbo shrimp cocktail for $45. 

On the menu, you'll also find a variety of made-to-share mains, including spicy vodka rigatoni, grilled lobster, and lamb rack. 

Prime steaks at the restaurant are made using a house-made steak spice and are aged for 28 days. The cheapest steak on the menu is a two-ounce Japanese A5 wagyu, that will still run you $55.

There's also no shortage of boozy drinks on the menu to keep your meal company. The house martini is poured tableside and includes some theatrical dry ice for a dramatic sipping experience. 

Maxime's is located at 77 Portland St. and is open seven days a week from 5 p.m. to 2 a.m.