Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Gastronomie montrealaise avec les parents

My parents were visiting recently, and because they love me and I am their little girl no matter what, they treated me to some nice times in some nice restaurants. I wish I could afford to repay their generosity and do this kind of eating more often. However, my waistline and wallet are happier with deprivation and infrequency of this sort of dining.

We started off with drinks at Balwin's Barmacie and had some fancy cocktails. Highly recommended is the Lionel, which is booze 4X: Gin, Vodka, Citrus Liqueur topped with Champagne. Ahhhh refreshing!

Once suitably loosened by these libations, we strolled to
Bouchonne for eating of food and tasting of wine. The deal here is that you can order duos of wine in 2 oz. servings and get a good idea of the range of character a certain grape presents. Ok I just re-read that last phrase and I sound like a pretentious wine snob but I am not. I will drink homemade, just made, Hungarian wine, blueberry wine, you name it.

I don't want to get all "restaurant review" up in here, but if you will allow, I shall comment on the overall service of this joint. The maitre'd was a French man of few words to express himself regarding the wine. I want to be regaled with tales of the wine...I want you to use adjectives, adverbs and fancy wording of which I might just get the basic gist. Use your words my friend, use your words. Sadly French guy did not. But maybe it's because the wine spoke for itself?

Mom really enjoyed her Riesling duo (one French, one German) and I was suitably impressed with my Italian/French Bordeaux combo. Dad's Pinot Noir duo was a little bit scary...am I missing something regarding this grape? Why does it taste so nasty...sorry,

We got another waiter to come over and explain the menu. We were slightly intimidated by the two liver dishes on the menu, along with some sort of veal gland and the fact that the menu used French cooking terminology. But no need to fear, buddy explained it to us and everything started to sound delicious.

Carrot salad with goat cheese and Fairmount Bagel croutons. I spoke to the chef about this salad and apparently one of the secrets to its success is lots of red wine vinegar--got it.

Their version of surf and turf. Baby back ribs and grilled salmon. My parents remarked that this may be the best ribs they had ever tasted. Bonus. Sometimes lightly cooked fish skeeves me out but this salmon was so very fresh.

Tuna steak with stewed red peppers and tomatoes with pickled turnips. Holy mother of god. This was so amazing! Fish done to perfection, so fresh and the veg had been slow cooked after roasting so all the flavors melded together into one delicious fiesta of sweet and pulpy goodness.

Please disregard the fact that I ate that bacon like meat atop the fish. P.S. It was delicious. Sorry for eating you pig but I enjoyed you!

Lunching on a Sunday afternoon at Newtown felt absolutely decadent. No way I could ever afford a 14 dollar sandwich every week. But this one was perfect.

Fresh crab salad in a brioche type roll with salad. My only complaint was that the salad tasted a tad old.

Come to mama.

Bu was definitely a great choice of wine bar. They offer trios of wines for better value than Bouchonne with Italian inspired bruscetta, pasta and mains. The waitress described the wines well, with lots of explanations and talk about the winery etc. I love the sense of anticipation that it creates. I had the Spanish trio and I expected nothing less than deliciousness since Spain is my favorite country for wine. It was pretty fantastic.


  1. All this looks amazing, even to this plant-eater ;) Your whole family is so awesome!

  2. Wow, that carrot salad looks killer

  3. yeah, it was ridiculously good. see those yellow carrots too? yum.