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Posts tagged ‘pie’

Restaurant Review: NOtaBLE

Location: 4611 Bowness Rd NW
Website: http://notabletherestaurant.ca/

For the longest time I’ve wanted to come here. And finally, on Julia’s birthday we got the chance. Situated in Bowness, this gem is a stark contrast to the community around it. While the rest of the community looks rather weathered, as many of the older communities are, this restaurant is a modern delight. At the entrance we were greeted by a friendly hostess. Though we had made reservations, there had been some kind of mix up, resulting in a slight delay, but we didn’t mind. Watching the chefs work in the open kitchen was mesmerizing. Once that was sorted, we were seated near the back of the dining room. I sat facing a mirror (mirrors always are great at creating an illusion that the place is bigger than it really is) and to my left a giant window looking out onto the street to remind me exactly where I was.

The waitress was prompt in getting our drink orders in, I had a jasmine green tea and Julia had the Cherry Cola (The Grizzly Paw Brewing Company’s soda’s are popping up everywhere. I had this same one at Charcut when I went, they’re fantastic, so I understand why so many restaurants are taking them on). For entrees we both decided on burgers, she had the Grilled BC Albacore Tuna Burger and I had the NOtaBLE burger, both with fries. The Tuna Burger was a beautifully seared patty of tuna served on a sesame bun, topped with  togarashi mayo, pickles, and local butter leaf. To be honest, the pickles were more like slightly pickled cucumbers. I liked that because it provided a fresh contrast to the fish, lifting it. As delicious as it was, I don’t think I would have been able to eat the entire thing on my own. The NOtaBLE burger was essentially a meatloaf burger which consisted of a mix of naturally raised pork & beef served with smoked Cheddar, a slice of beefsteak tomato, lettuce, roasted onion, and mayo atop an Asiago cheese bun. The mixture of pork and beef made the patty more moist and was very meatloaf-y. The roast onion provided the right amount acidity to make the dish pop. It may not be the best burger I’ve had ever, but it’s up there.

Though we were both pretty full, we decide a birthday meal wouldn’t be complete without dessert. Julia settled on a Stilton cheesecake (yes, it’s blue cheese) and I had the Dark chocolate milk pie. The cheesecake had been bruleed, adding another depth of texture to it. The rhubarb compote provided a tart contrast to the creaminess inherent in cheesecakes, making them a nice pairing. The blue cheese taste was not overbearing, it was actually almost unnoticable. Had I not known that Stilton was blue cheese, I would have never guessed it was in there. Though I don’t really like how strong blue cheese is, the marbling colour of blue and white are beautiful, and I would have loved to see that imitated in the cheesecake itself. My pie had oatmeal cookie crust served with a mandarin marmalade and vanilla gelato. In all honestly, I ordered this for the gelato. In the last little while, I’ve had an obsession with vanilla gelato, but it’s so good so who can blame me right? The pie was more like a dark chocolate ganache tart I had attempted a while back, incredibly rich and I could have done with a smaller portion size (and if the portion size was reduced, the price would have to be adjusted accordingly), but it was still delicious. While orange and chocolate are a classic pairing, the orange failed to measure up to its potential. For me, it just fell flat, not giving me the brightness orange usually promises.

Overall, great atmosphere, great service, and great food. Though the menu is not extensive, I would most definitely come back here again. This place would be great for a cozy date night. 4.25/5.

Open Kitchen Notable

Open Kitchen

Notable interior

NOtaBLE interior

Burgers Notable

Back: NOtaBLE Burger Front: Albacore Tuna Burger

Dessert Notable

Top: Dark Chocolate and Milk Pie with Mandarin Marmalade and Vanilla Gelato Bottom: Stilton Cheesecake with Rhubarb Compote

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Restaurant Review: Pie Cloud

Location:  314 D 10th Street NW
Website: http://www.piecloud.ca/

Though I’ve categorized it as a restaurant, I’d say it’s more like a cross between a cafe and a restaurant. Maybe a bistro? I’m not sure exactly what the right word for it would be. As with most of the restaurants and cafes I’ve been to in the Kensington area, this place is quaint and cute.

The first thing that struck me when I walked into the place was how empty it was. I had heard that it was on the pricier side, but if the food was good, I expected it to be packed regardless. We were promptly seated and given a chance to peruse the menus. Me being me of course, I had already looked at the menu before coming because one I take forever to decide on what I want and two because if the food doesn’t sound appealing to me, I don’t want to go. While the atmosphere of the place is quaint and cute, the food can only be described as comfort. The menu consists primarily of pies, hence the name, but they also have a variety of food that aren’t pies (cleverly headed as “not pies” on the menu). Our waitress started us off with drinks almost immediately. Julia ordered a coffee and I had a winter gold tea. Both came from local business in the area, mine from The Naked Leaf and Julia’s from The Roasterie (which was right next door). The Winter Gold tea was magnificent and fragrant. Not only were the colours beautiful, the sweetness of the tea was not overwhelming. With that out of the way, it was time to focus on entrees. My initial reaction to seeing a Mac and Cheese Pie was disgust and confusion. I couldn’t imagine something so starchy ever being enjoyable, but putting that aside I decided to give this a try (also, bacon lattice, like come on, even though I don’t like bacon that much, a bacon lattice sounds so awesome!). It was a strange combination and I didn’t end up eating much of the pie crust, but it was something worth trying. My friend Julia ordered the Boston Chowder Pie. That was one of the pies I had considered trying, but was concerned that the pie filling would be more like a clam chowder and be very runny, but I was wrong. It was thick and creamy and filled with a hearty helping of clams, bacon, and assorted vegetables all wrapped in a wonderful, flaky potato crust. Each pie comes with a choice of sides, I had the coleslaw and Julia had the butternut squash soup. The coleslaw was more acidic that I had expected, but it was a good counter for the richness of the mac and cheese. The butternut squash soup was served in a cup and in no way measured up to Vendome’s butternut squash veloute. For dessert, we decided to share a slice of pecan pie. I had been craving pecan pie for a while and unfortunately I was about to be disappointed. I had thought if the entree pies were any indication as to the size of their portions, there was no way that we could each get a slice of pie and finish it after having had the entrees. The pie itself was actually quite nice. Very butter and flaky crust and overall, it wasn’t too sweet. However, for $8, the size of the pie didn’t measure up. Next time I think I’ll give their mermaid pie a try.

I like this place for the fact that they help support some of the local business in the area and that there’s a place in Calgary where I can find comfort food for those days when you need it most. What’s also interesting is its address: 314. On the “About Us” section of their webpage, they point this out. The significance. 3.14 is of course Pi. Their menu is quite extensive and any of their savoury pies sound so delicious that I intend to return to try them all. It would be interesting to try out their breakfast ideas one day as well. Our waitress was very attentive and I can find little to complain about. However, as mentioned earlier, the prices can be a bit steep for some and the size of the pecan pie was disappointing. Other than that, I’d have to say everything else was perfect. 4/5

pie cloud exterior

Pie Cloud Exterior

Pie Cloud interior 2

Pie Cloud Interior

Pie cloud interior

Pie Cloud Interior

Decoration

Decoration

Winter Gold Tea

Winter Gold Tea

Mac and Cheese Pie

Mac and Cheese Pie with Coleslaw

Boston Chowder Pie alone

Boston Chowder Pie with Butternut Squash Soup

Pecan pie

Pecan Pie

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