Friday, August 27, 2010
Lunching at Town
After throwing responsibility for the lunch location selection out to Twitter yesterday, gastronomic pals rallied me and the mister to go to Town. Town is located at 296 Elgin Street, near Gilmour. It has a long and narrow footprint with a banquette down one wall and the bar down the other. There are a number of stooled seats at the front. Decorating the wall above the banquette is a shelf of fresh produce and flowers, artfully placed.
For our starter we decided to share the cod fritters on a bed of smoked pork ragu with lemon mayo for $11. We both enjoyed the solid preparation. Being big taste people, we had expected something more forward on the palette and guessed the best place to put that punch would be in the ragu.
For my lunch I chose the pappardelle pasta with lamb ragu, oyster mushrooms, arugula and pecorino romano for $16. It was very well prepared. The portion size was handsome. I liked the subtle heat that finished each taste. Considering the pappardelle was a dry pasta, I was pleased with it and felt it was cooked perfectly. Did I mention the lamb? So much lamb!
The mister had the sandwich with meat balls, fontina and grilled red onions for $13. The meatballs were very tender and when we asked, we were told that they were a blend of beef and pork. [It should probably state this on the menu considering some choose to not include pork in their diet. When I hear meatballs, I think beef or veal.] The sandwich was super messy and hard to eat delicately. Not food for lunch with the queen. The mister said the sandwich tasted great! Full flavoured. It was accompanied by a salad and some of their signature pecorino potatoes. Big thumbs up on those potatoes!
The mister had a Kichesippi beer for $6. And my can of sparkling San Pellegrino Aranciata Rosso (blood orange) was $3.50.
The service was very attentive and knowledgeable. We felt like we were in good hands right from the first greeting.
The place has a buzz to it. The tables are very, very close together. I felt intimated enough to not talk about anything but fluff stuff because I knew how easily I could hear the conversations of our neighbour tables. Boy, have I got some good stories for you! :)
Lunch was $56 taxes in, without tip. Not an everyday lunch habit for too many people in this town. For us, that kind of coin for lunch means it is a treat and it comes with very high expectations. We want to be eating the best that Ottawa has to offer.
For a new restaurant, they sure didn't seem to be experiencing any growing pains. Everything went so smoothly. I couldn't help but wonder if they had set themselves up for this success but having such a short menu. For me that was a bit of a problem. I was expecting more choices. At least a salad or two. Even soup. If you are not into sandwiches, then you may not have much of a lunch interest in Town. So as for going back, the jury is still out. Likely not for lunch but perhaps I need to explore their dinner menu. It is absolutely encouraging that the food was prepared so well and the service was spot on.
Although they do have a website, they have more content on their Facebook page.
296 Elgin Street
Tues to Fri: 11:30 am - 2 pm
Tues to Sun: 5 pm - Close