This weekend we tried out Town, a gastro pub in Ottawa on Elgin. We had a fabulous time. Immediately on entering, we realized it was much smaller place than we thought, and we liked it. It has this feel of ‘un endroit branchée!’ you find in big cities. Manon spotted a couple of cookbooks, the classic from Batali Molto Italiano and a popular restaurant in San Francisco A16. From then on you know you’re in good hands, and the food is going to be good Italian food! If you’re looking for a quiet place, this may not be it, to us, it’s felt good, we could just talk and not be afraid of anyone over hearing us!
We started it off with what else, bubbles, a proseco, and shortly after our table was ready. The menu is written on a blackboard on the wall. Right away we spotted one could order in both small and large plates. For us this is the best, we get to taste so much more this way with small plates.
Everything was very good, and then some. Our host, Jennifer was very good, with great insight and recommendations, and there when we needed her! We ordered a nice bottle of wine, Barbera D’alba, Needless to say we went small plates all the way.
I decided to order chicken livers crostini. Jennifer nudged us along to encourage us on this one since we were not really sure. Chicken livers impose themselves too much in a meal if not done right. In this case the crostini were served with the chicken livers mousse and a ‘rubarbe’ jam sprinkled with bacons. The whole thing was such a great surprise, it was awesome!
We then went for Tuna fritters, they were served on braised pork, if my memory serves me well. It had a nice balance of tastes, with a twist of lemon, and sour cream. Delicate and light, just enough tuna taste.
Next was ricotta fourré meatballs with tomato sauce. The meatballs were so tender and moist it was heaven on earth in my mouth. Jennifer told us they were made with lots of bread and handled with love. They were soft, light, and fourré with home made ricotta and it was a great treat.
Next up were two pasta dishes, all fresh pasta. The first one short ribs sauce, my expectations were high for those, and I was a tad disappointed, Manon was not. I would have liked the sauce to be ticker, and more ‘onctueuse’ instead it was a little watery. It was still good, compared to the other plates it was not at the same level of excellence. The last pasta dish was stozzapreti, a rich pasta made of goat cheese, mushrooms, onions and mint, with crusty bread crumps, and pine nuts, all around a very very good pasta. It was a good blend of flavours, and texture, really fun on the tongue and between the teeth.
Last but not least the desert, I’m a chocolate guy, I resisted the urge, and we shared the arborio rice pudding. It had a compote of sun dried sherries with pistachio enrobed with caramelized sugar. We fought our way to the bottom of that pot like you would not believe, it was simply awesome.
I highly recommend you try it out, we had a fantastic experience, and the food was simply excellent!