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If you've been longing for an authentic Italian experience this summer, you'll be eager to visit a new spot that boasts rural Italy's charm and its street vendors. Run by Neighbourhood Creative co-founders Ernesto Gaita, Anna Maria Gaita and Anthony Sorella, in collaboration with artist Anthony Ricciardi, Piadina by Monti exclusively serves thin flatbreads from the Romagna region of Italy known as piadine, which are stuffed with classic Italian toppings like prosciutto and mozzarella.
While the concept of the piadina is not new to Canada -- local Italian eatery Buono serves the flatbreads on their menu, while Quebec's Comptoir La Piadina specializes in them -- the recently opened spot is unique to Toronto's Italian food landscape for its tailored focus. There are nearly 10 different types of piadine featuring various meats, cheeses and vegetables, and even one dessert offering with Nutella and icing sugar. Piadina by Monti also offers taglieri, which are mixed cheese, meat and veggie boards, and a simple wine and beer selection.
Ernesto Gaita shared that "the space was strategically created to promote socializing... [and] the 'Monti' concept is inspired by the neighbourhood in Rome, known as the 'go-to' place for aperitifs." Adjustments are sure to be made in the interim to factor in social distancing, and while the restaurant opened against the odds of a ruthless pandemic that continues to shutter many establishments, here's hoping its distinct format and genuine flavours will make it a fast favourite. Piadina by Monti is located at 6 Markham Street and is open Monday to Thursday from 12–10 p.m.; Friday to Saturday from 11 a.m.–12 a.m. and Sunday 11 a.m.–8 p.m.