Walking into unheardof is akin to stepping back in time. The intimate restaurant, located on Whyte Avenue near the Mill Creek Ravine, is a 33-year favourite for locals, becoming kind of an “old reliable” in the fine-dining scene. The dcor is cozy and inviting, with table-top lamps illuminating the furniture and antique knick-knacks spread throughout the main floor dining area.
The menu is laced with old favourites, and my dining companion and I search out some reliably delicious samplings. We start with the surf and turf charcuterie. With a choice of three options from a list of seven, we choose a melt-in-your-mouth blueberry maple venison tenderloin, the shiitake chicken roll and the prawn and scallop roll. Served with a baguette and olives, plus a variety of spreads, the sampling offers a preview of dishes to come with flavours that range from buttery to sweet.
We clear our palette with an apricot sorbet. The delectable treat is refreshing, surprising us with infused ginger that offers an aftertaste well-suited to the coming savoury main courses.
The Tuscan rubbed duck breast comes on a bed of wild rice with a ginger plum sauce. The sauce is sweet and does wonders to complement the duck’s crisp outer layer, while the Tuscan rub – made with rosemary, oregano, fennel, smoked paprika, sea salt and garlic – adds a distinct Italian flavour to the juicy, medium-well cooked breast.
My dining companion feasts on baked lobster tail, which sits prominently over its crimson shell. It’s traditionally seasoned with brown butter and lemon – a testament to classic dishes done right – and, like everything else we sampled throughout the evening, the plating is simple. The buttery flavour is intensified with a creamy lemon-butter risotto and Swiss chard garnished with large chili-seasoned prawns.