The Sound of Music, Overture
From the outside, I have to admit that this sports dome looked rather unremarkable; however as I entered through the air-sealed revolving doors, my 7-iron in hand, and walked out onto the lush astroturf, I was immediately captivated and felt like I had discovered a Garden of Eden or some forgotten, urban Paradise!
Urban Flute Project from the outset has been laced with serendipitous events, chance meetings and bizarre connects that leave me scratching my head at times. In this case, based totally on a random conversation in a local restaurant, I was introduced to this phenomenal golfing center in Toronto’s east end, out where St. Clair and Bloor collide, and am happy to report that I now have a team of golf pros to help me improve my game!
As I explain further, don’t get me wrong: I love my local watering holes – The Duke of York on Prince Arthur, for example, or The Pour House up on Dupont – you know, for grabbing a beer along with some utilitarian pub fare.
But nothing compares to Le Paradis Brasserie and Bistro just a few steps further up Bedford Road for its superb French cuisine and extraordinary, personable service. We’re talking white linen treatment here, and a bill for soup and a cold one – get this – even including a generous tip, that is less than the same fare at either pub pre-tip, so go figure!
I guess that’s why Le Paradis is packed to the rafters on a regular basis.
Personally, I like perching at the bar near the entrance, in part to watch the comings and goings of the wait staff, as well as to see customers as they arrive and wait briefly to be seated. So it was a couple of weeks ago that I found myself settling into my bouillabaisse, fresh bread and a Stella when presently a trio arrived and assembled themselves around the corner of the dark wood bar adjacent to me.
It turns out that this family manage one of Toronto’s finest golf domes, offering a driving range with targets to aim for as well as informal coaching for golfers of all levels – if only they had this kind of space for musicians, you know, where you could drop by to practice for 20 minutes, and maybe get a pro to offer a few pointers – how cool would that be?
On par with the friendly welcome one gets visiting Toronto City Sports Centre, I would hazard (sorry, golf jokes!) to say that, besides offering excellent value, Le Paradis is remarkable for the atmosphere that they’ve created – just walking in through the doors one is ushered into another world – the aromas that emanate enticingly from the kitchen and fill the air intermingle with a distinct sense of bon vivante. For a singular French dining experience, you owe it to yourself to drop by Le Paradis, located just north of Davenport on the west side of Bedford.
And if you’re looking for some fine golfing, head to Toronto City Golf where you can work your way through a pyramid of balls for just $12. Like the French service offered at Le Paradis, this is a magical, inviting space to work on your game, especially in the off-season. And besides, like impersonal service and paper napkins at the local pubs, why settle for anything less? As compared to hitting some old bucket of balls at some old hackneyed driving range – check out the civilized, carefully stacked pyramids of golf balls in the picture above – well that’s just so, how would you say, declasse!
Not the first time thatI’ve recorded in a sports dome, here’s the sound of my whacking a few balls before switching over to my flute
– and yes, I hit the suspended bull’s-eye 2 out of 3 shots when I turned my sights in that direction! Imagine these two soundfiles overlaid as I ‘aim’ my notes out into this fantastic space!