Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Of all the 125 restaurants for Taste MTL, we have chosen another restaurant owned by Edward Zaki. I rarely check or read reviews about the restaurant so it does not bias my review. It's just a pure coincidence that we end up choosing one of his restaurants again. On the previous TASTE MTL event, I went to Confusion Tapas du Monde and Chez Victoire. It is probably because their menu items are just attractive for us to choose his restaurants.

When you come in, you get every items on the event menu so you only need to decide whether or not you want to complement your food with wine. The menu consists of 10 mezes and 2 desserts. I won't go through all the items as I don't have an opinion on some mezes. 

Let's start with the low point of the meal. The barbounya ceviche did not have the harmonious flavour of the saltiness and freshness of the fish, the acidity from the citrus juice and the play of texture that I was looking for in a ceviche. The pork belly was not very exceptional, it tasted a lot like the Asian pork belly char siu, at least the skin was crispy and the meat was very tender to cut through with a fork. The grilled quail was well-seasoned but lacked of outstanding flavours on the inside. Finally, (I can't believe I'm criticizing about it) the chocolate mousse was sort of a disappointment. It lacks this rich, smooth, luxurious feeling about chocolate, and somehow we didn't feel it... 

Of course, there are some highlights, the mussel pilaki was very flavourful in which the broth was full of herby flavours and the sweetness of the carrots is quite present. The endive salad was very unique, I even ask the waiter to give me the recipe for the honey roasted endive. These are the best endives I tasted so far as it is sweet and has a nice crunch to it, it melded well with the acidity of the supreme fruits. Endive tends to be very bitter when cooked. The star of the day would be the lamb tartare, well-seasoned and well-spiced with Meditteranean flavours. Finally, the baklava was moist, not overly sweet.

We had a wonderful dining experience and our stomach was quite satisfied. If you haven't decide where to eat for Taste MTL, this is a place that is worth visiting.
Barley, fine herb and zereshk salad
Mussels Pilaki with Fennel
Grilled Quail with Grape Molasses and Maple Syrup Reduction, and Lamb Tartare with Kamouraska spices
Barbounya Ceviche
Puff Pastry Cigars with Friulano cheese and Pastirma
Honey Roasted Endives Salad with Supreme Grapefruit and Orange
Fried Smelts with Chilli Aioli

Pork Belly with Quince Aioli
Baklava and Chocolate Mousse with Maple Syrup-coated Walnuts

234 avenue Laurier
Montreal, QC
H2T 2N8
Barbounya on Urbanspoon


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