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Cabbagetown has a newcomer to their restaurant scene, an elegant and modern take on the intersection of Sicilian and Mediterranean cuisines that highlights fresh, ethically-sourced and ingredient-forward dishes.
DOVA, which opened its door a couple of weeks ago at Carlton and Parliament, offers a sophisticated neighbourhood spot equipped with a wine cellar, a beautiful indoor dining space and a lush back patio, tucked away in a hidden oasis. The restaurant's name comes from a word representing Don Vale, the 19th-century village that was once today's Cabbagetown, which reflects their hope of one day becoming a rich part of the area's history in a similar fashion.
Chef Roberto Marotta (of popular Corktown establishment ARDO) and his team crafted a concept that reflects Sicily's climate and culinary traditions, with additional heavy influence from other regions of the Mediterranean. Hailing from Sicily, Marotta grew up watching and learning from his mother, who would prepare classic dishes for their family using traditional ingredients and methods. After opening his first restaurant in his hometown of Milazzo, he migrated west and began showcasing his talents through the kitchens of Toronto's most prominent Italian spots before opening ARDO and now, DOVA.
The menu features fresh seafood appetizers like grilled octopus, sautéed littleneck clams and fried calamari with zucchini, plus larger plates of swordfish carpaccio, grilled white snapper and various oysters. Other entrées include artisanal homemade pasta adorned with herbs, cheeses and seasonal vegetables, classic pizzas and a small selection of meat dishes. All of the meats are ethically sourced and the fish fresh-caught, making for a sustainable and delicious dining experience. Elevated cocktails and an extensive Italian wine list round out meals alongside typical desserts like sorbetto, tiramisu and mascarpone mousse.
DOVA is open seven days a week from 5-11 p.m., and reservations can be made on their website through Resy, by phone or by email. Head on over to try their delectable and authentic Italian-meets-Mediterranean cuisine, and don't miss out on the gorgeous hidden patio before the weather gets colder!