Sunday, December 1, 2013

Ottawa - Art-is-in is the place to go for its flavoursome breads, tasty gourmet sandwiches and exquisite pastries. You can find their bread being served in several high-end restaurants in Ottawa and Gatineau. Not only it is a bakery, it has a huge dining room where you can have a good comforting gourmet meal. Brunch is only served on Sunday. It does get packed starting at 11am. There is a very long line, but the staffs do pick up your order quickly. 

Art-Is-In seems to be a popular choice for brunch amongst Ottawans. And I can see why. Once you finish eating, you can order a loaf of bread or a pastry to take home. There is an express lane dedicated for short orders.

Their Sunday brunch changes a bit weekly. We opt for the brunch burger and the egg benny. The burger has the perfect ratio of bread, greens and meats with a nice contrast of flavour profile. Juicy, oozy egg yolk coating the whole burger, and a nice acidity from pickles.

The egg benny with a maple fennel sausage tasted very good, but the egg yolk could be a bit runnier. The puff pastry does not work very well with the egg Benedict as it is hard to cut through with a knife and eat each element combined in one bite on a fork. The balance of texture is a bit off.

Lastly, we had to order the cronut as I didn't have to try one yet in Montreal. If you are craving for cronuts in Ottawa, you can find them here. Now that I have my first dose of cronuts, I now understand all the fuss around cronuts and it's a genius idea if done right. I did have to cut the cronut with a fork and knife to fully analyse it. The cronut is a croissant-style pastry that is deep-fried like a doughnut. It is typically coated with granular sugar and thin glaze.

So what's so special about cronuts? After a close analysis, here is my conclusion. It's like eating a Tim Hortons' Honey Cruller - very soft and moist. The sugar coating helps deepen the flavour of the glaze and the buttery taste of the pastry. Even though the glaze seems minimalist, it is enough to coat the whole flaky pastry the moment you start chewing on it. The added pumpkin seeds give a nice momentary crunch to the overall cronut.

Brunch Burger - Maple-Syrup brushed Bacon, Pulled Pork, Arugula and Fried Egg
Eggs Benny, Maple Fennel Sausage on Puff Pastry
Pumpkin Cronuts

Art-Is-In Bakery
250 City Center
Avenue Bay #112
Ottawa, ON
Art Is in Bakery on Urbanspoon


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