For the last six years, Anthony Rose has been instrumental in shaping the image of the Drake Hotel as the city’s preeminent destination for pimped-out comfort food. But The Grid has learned that, as of April 1, the executive chef will be leaving the hip West Queen West destination to open a place of his own. “It’s just time to move on,” says Rose. “In my career, I like to stay at places for a while and what I’ve done with the Drake over the last six years has been amazing, but I’m just ready to do something different.”
Having cut his teeth with Jonathan Waxman in New York, Rose is known for his haute take on classic American cuisine—burgers with aged cheddar and Perth bacon, fish and chips with homemade tartar sauce, and fried chicken with herb waffles, crème fraiche and Niagara cherry jam. Rose is still tightlipped on the details of his future venture, but fans of his cooking can expect something similar to what they’ve seen in the past. “I’ll be doing what I’ve always done, but probably in just a bit of a different fashion,” he says. “This way, I’ll just have control over everything—from the food, wine and cocktails to the beer and the service.”
After his final day at the Drake, Rose will take time off to spend with his son and head up north for some relaxation at the cottage. As for his future venue, here’s what we do know: Despite having spent a good deal of time working in the States, Rose confirms he’ll be staying in Toronto and wants to open up his place in the west end—somewhere along Queen, Dundas or College—before the end of the year. Finally, fans of the hotel’s simple, eclectic and well-executed cuisine need not worry—taking over the top position in the kitchen will be Darren Glew, who worked under Rose for the past five years. Until then, Rose will be serving up the comfort-food classics he’s made famous for the rest of the month.