O.NOIR Restaurant
620 Church Street
Toronto, Ontario
M4Y 2G2

average food but wonderful experience!

Message from a co-worker, Willis. Couldn’t have explained it better myself!

for those who are unfamiliar with what onoir is.  it is a “dine in the dark” restaurant, a sensual dining experience! you literally eat in the damn dark! Concept was first established in Montreal, Quebec.

upon arrival the host/hostess would take your order in the lounge/wait area.  its set up like winterlicious/summerlicious a fixe prix menu.  the courses are set up into apetitizer, mains and dessert.  you can order the “surprise dish” for each course which is a dish thats not listed in the menu.  i ordered the grill portobello mushroom w/ parmigiano shavings and balsamic vinegar to start.  my main was veal al limone served with potatoes and vegetables.  for dessert i had the surprise dessert (a chocolate mousse cake of some sort).

after we ordered, we were split into two five person lines.  we got introduced to our server nazir, he was a blind gentleman.  infact the whole wait staff were all blind!  we were lead through two doors in a conga-line style into the dining area. this was amazing! how they were able to navigate through the dining area was beyond me.  this was the first taste of how it was like to be without sight. the dining area was pitch black! it was really trippy.  this is when your other senses kick in, and communication was key.  “there is a door on the right hold it open” and nazir would tap on the door so we could hear where it was.  when we got to our table, “your seat is to your left” and we would feel for the back of the chair and maneuver our way into the seat.  after we all got seated we try to accustom ourselves to the darkness.  it is amazing how you can tell where people are just through your sense of hearing.  then we started our dinner conversation and even a little game of marco-polo.

a couple of minutes into our conversation our appetizers arrived.  nazir would announce “who ordered the ” and we would answer.  he would steer his way through the darkness and when he got to the person he would then hold the plate next to your left shoulder to receive.  the succeeding courses would following in a similar manner. dinner went amazingly well. so many questions were answered on how dinner would take place considering we couldnt use the sense that we all took for granted.

onoir is a dining experience is like no other.  all your senses are heighten to enjoy the food on a totally different level.  onoir leaves you with a full stomach and with a better understanding with what its like to be blind.  definitely worth checking out.


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