DesBrisay Dines

WEEKLY LUNCH PICK: Anne DesBrisay takes a trip down memory lane with a visit to Cyranos in the city’s west end

The warm avocado salad included a quartet of grilled shrimp with a half ripe avocado, a pile of greens, and a warm stew of onion, tomato, and cilantro smothered on top

By Anne DesBrisay

I’ve been packing up my sons and putting them in boxes. Removed from shelves and walls, they’ve been protected with bubble wrap, labelled, and stored on a basement shelf. This is a process real estate agents call “depersonalizing” and apparently it’s necessary before you sell your house. De-clutter and get rid of the boys, they tell me. I’ve been quite enjoying it, I must say.

One of the framed photos I stashed away was of my youngest, in an infant seat at Cyranos. I knew it was Cyranos because behind him were the giant murals of fruits and vegetables that plastered the walls of this Bells Corners Mediterranean restaurant.

I’ve no idea who took the picture, or why, but there you go. Both kid and restaurant were pretty brand new.

The kofte special included three grill-marked ovals of lamb, veal, and pork

Cyranos hasn’t changed much in those 16 years. Here still are those murals, the booths beneath them, the open kitchen and long bar.  It’s still dark inside — the price of blocking out the view of the Bell Mews — and the service remains maternal and kind.

I dropped in for lunch with my youngest son, now well out of the infant seat and into the driver’s.

I could have used a stiff drink, but settled for the warm avocado salad, which included a quartet of  grilled shrimp, well-seasoned and in fine shape, with a half ripe avocado, a pile of greens and a warm stew of onion, tomato, and cilantro smothered on top. It was pretty good.

My lad had the kofte special, three moist, grill marked ovals of lamb, veal, and pork, seasoned, herbed, and very tasty, resting on a mound of boring rice and served with a tossed salad.

Neither rocked our world, but Cyranos doesn’t tend to do that. It’s been a reliably good restaurant for many years, in a part of town that needs those, and it carries on in that vein.

Let’s hope it’s a long way away from having to be put on a shelf.

Cost: Shrimp salad, $15; kofte special, $18.

Open: for lunch, Monday to Friday; dinner, Monday to Saturday.

Cyranos, 39 Robertson Rd., 613-721-0510.