Our Anniversary Dinner at Le Select Bistro

anniversary cards


Here we are, out for our 16th anniversary dinner last weekend!

Forgive me if you've already heard this story before, as I do tell it every year around this time : We were introduced by a mutual friend, Alison -- Nick had gone to school with her and I had met her at a place we both worked.

She told me about her friend Nick while we were out one evening, and how she thought we'd be perfect for one another. But I'd misunderstood something she'd said about him, which I took to mean that he wasn't the guy I was looking to meet at that particular time. So, I didn't follow-up with her about him. Then, a couple of months after our discussion, she called me up specifically to tell me about him again. She really thought we would get along well, and being the good friend that she was, she didn't want me to miss out on meeting this terrific person.

She had recently started dating a man she liked a lot at the time, who she had been introduced to by a friend, so she wanted the opportunity to pay it forward. As it turned out, she and her man were married two months before we were, and they just also celebrated their 16th.

So, I agreed to an introduction, which came via an e-mail copying in both of us, 5 minutes after the phone was hung up. She made the introduction and then stated that her "job here is done."

Note that this was 17 years ago, before internet dating sites existed, so meeting through an e-mail was not at all common. We chatted back and forth a bit, and decided to meet for coffee on the following Sunday afternoon. Also, digital cameras didn't exist yet, so we had no photos to exchange beforehand, making our meeting a true blind date. He told me he'd be wearing a red shirt, so that's what I was to look for.

When I got to the cafe (Future's on Bloor Street), there were quite a few men sitting by themselves in the place. I stood in the doorway and looked around, but could see no red shirts. I did spot Nick though, not knowing that was him, and the thought ran through my head that it sure would be nice if my blind date was with that guy. Then, and I can remember this like it was yesterday, that guy slowly pulled down the zipper of his jacket to reveal a red shirt, while looking at me with a flirty little smile. So, he made me laugh before I'd even spoken to him in person.

During our first weeks together, one of our dates was a romantic dinner at a French restaurant called Le Select Bistro, that was located on Queen Street West, just west of John.

We were married one year after that first meeting, (well, minus a week because our venue of choice was not available on the exact one year mark). The place we held the ceremony, dinner and dance-party reception was a beautiful old mansion tucked away on an extremely dark and quiet street, that was Wellington at the time. It was at 424 Wellington and the place had a very bohemian gothy air that we both loved.

The interior had lots of wood, a massive creaky staircase, crushed velvet drapes, and very moody lighting. It was run by a cool elderly couple, who to us they had originally used the building as a home-base to an art commune back in the 60s and 70s.

Fast forward 16 years, to a couple of weeks ago when we were discussing where to go for our anniversary dinner. The obvious choice was Le Select Bistro. It was no longer located on Queen Street West though. No, now it is located on Wellington Street, right beside the very place where we were married!

le select bistro on wellington street toronto


When we made the reservation we mentioned that it was for our anniversary dinner so that we'd be given a quiet table. To our surprise, not only were we seated at a lovely table, within a little candle-lit niche that looked to be designed for romantic dinners for two, but we were also greeted with a glass of champagne on the house, and best wishes for a happy anniversary, which was a very nice touch.

glass of champagne in a romantic restaurant toronto


le select bistro menu


menu


at select bistro


nick with mustache for movember


↑ My Movember Man ... growing a mustache for the month to raise awareness for men's health issues. His 'stache is funny and has made us laugh a lot. He has this certain way of wiggling it that gets me every time. ↑

Our server was great. I asked if it was ok with her if I photographed her opening the wine. Then, she and Nick had a chuckle about the pressure she was under not to break the cork in front of the camera ...

opening the wine select bistro toronto


laughing



The wine was The Family Tree, made at Henry of Pelham estates in the Niagara Region.

family tree wine from niagara region canada for our anniversary


To eat, we both had a salad followed by Steak Frites, mine with sauteed shallots over-top and Nick's with a nice green peppercorn sauce.

salad


steak frites at le select toronto


For dessert, Nick had Chocolate Cake with Mango ice-cream (which he made like a blogger and photographed for me!) and I had creme-brule.

chocolate cake and mango ice cream at le select bistro


creme brule at le select bistro toronto


coffee


romantic booth tables for two at le select bistro


The mansion next door has been shut down as a venue for years now, and when we told the server we'd been married there, she was surprised. She said that she'd worked at the restaurant for five years and had never seen the place open.

inside le select bistro


bar area at le select bistro toronto


le select bistro patio in the fall


After dinner, I walked up the driveway of the old mansion to get a picture. It looks exactly like it did 16 years ago, except that there were two lanterns, lit by real fire, gracing the entrance way back then. I would sure love to have a look around inside that place today!

where we got married 424 wellington street toronto


↑ Our wedding was in the mansion right next door to the restaurant, back in 1999. ↑

nick


cn tower toronto at night from wellington and spadina


me


We thoroughly enjoyed our special date at Le Select Bistro -- the food and atmosphere were perfect. The location made for a wonderful walk down memory-lane, and for a brand new memory of a happy marriage celebrated.

on our wedding day


Thank you for taking a look,
xo loulou

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12 Responses to Our Anniversary Dinner at Le Select Bistro

  1. Vix says:

    Happy Anniversary to you both! What a lovely, heart-warming story of how you got together. That restaurant looks so authentically Parisian. The ‘tashe suits Nick and I love your daisy scarf. xxx

  2. Julie says:

    ooh, what a wonderful post, happy anniversary to you guys!! You both look fab in the photos. I recently found out that if you say it’s your anniversary, restaurants really go the extra mile- more so than if it’s your birthday. no idea why. And how wonderful that the restaurant had moved to near where you two were married!! That last photo- is that from your wedding day? You both look exactly the same, just Nick’s facial hair is different!! and his hair, but he must’ve got it cut since the last time I saw him, previously I’d say it was similar.

  3. Gaia says:

    Happy Anniversary, Loulou and Nick !!
    A great post and lovely pictures.

  4. Lisa says:

    Happy Anniversary Louise and Nick!!! You two make the best couple! I love Nick’s Movember mustache, made me smile. He looks so different with it. You look beautiful and radiant as always Louise! I like your hair up. xoxo

  5. Hollie says:

    Oh I love that last pic!!!

  6. Annika says:

    I apologize that I haven’t been around much to read and comment, but happy anniversary to you two! Such an attractive couple, then and now.

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