Diwan-AgaKhanMuseum-BestofToronto-2016-006

We ventured to Aga Khan Museum, a unique beautiful Toronto attraction that opened in 2014, designed by Pritzker Prize-winner Fumihiko Maki, offering visitors to see aspects of Islam. Inside, we arrived at Diwan restaurant, where Chef Mark McEwan and Chef de Cuisine John Kovac offer a menu inspired with Middle East, North African & Indian cuisine.

During lunch, we dined amidst antiques, with Diwan’s elegant 19th-century wooden panels hand-carved and painted in Damascus, it was a nice touch to the modern and bright space.

Our selections of appetizers began Lamb Kibbeh with with toasted pine nuts, golden raisins, citrus tahini, and shirazi salsa as well as Grilled Octopus, which was served with green chickpea salad, Moroccan olives, sweet stewed peppers, sujuk, and Aleppo pepper aioli. The octopus was tender and chewy.

Lamb kibbeh with toasted pine nuts, golden raisins, citrus tahini, and shirazi salsa

Lamb kibbeh with toasted pine nuts, golden raisins, citrus tahini, and shirazi salsa

 

Grilled Octopus, which was served with green chickpea salad, Moroccan olives, sweet stewed peppers, sujuk, and Aleppo pepper aioli

Grilled Octopus, which was served with green chickpea salad, Moroccan olives, sweet stewed peppers, sujuk, and Aleppo pepper aioli

 

My favourite main dish was the Chermoula-Marinated Prawns, served with roasted heirloom carrots, avocado, labneh, orange-cumin vinaigrette, and fresh coriander.

Chermoula-Marinated Prawns, served with roasted heirloom carrots, avocado, labneh, orange-cumin vinaigrette, and fresh coriander

Chermoula-Marinated Prawns, served with roasted heirloom carrots, avocado, labneh, orange-cumin vinaigrette, and fresh coriander

 

We also had the Grilled Beef Shish Kebab was tasty and well-spiced with its accompanied chickpea puree and heirloom beets. They have a range of specialty coffees and teas, such as the Moroccan Spiced Coffee, Orange Bloom “White Coffee” and Indian Masala Chai.

Grilled Beef Shish Kebab accompanied chickpea puree and heirloom beets

Grilled Beef Shish Kebab accompanied chickpea puree and heirloom beets

 

Carrot halva upside down cake with spice, brown sugar reduction, cream cheese icing

Carrot halva upside down cake with spice, brown sugar reduction, cream cheese icing

 

We can’t wait till the weather warms up, where the infinity pool will be up and running, in front of the facility making the view of the museum even more breath-taking. Diwan will also be opening their patio in the summer.

Aga Khan has a series of upcoming performing arts programs available: Reflections on Hafiz (March 12), Reflections on Rumi (April 16), Reflections on Kabir and Khusrau (April 29), DakhaBrakha (April 23).

They offer pre-performance dinner. March 12th’s pre-performance dinner includes: tomato and basil feta salad, beef two ways (Kofta bâdemjân and Shirazi salsa Iranian-style beef stew) and finished with Persian rice pudding for $75 per person.

Diwan is located at 77 Wynford Dr, Toronto, ON. For more info visit agakhanmuseum.org.

Photos by Nick Lee

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