Kitchenette1353, Rene-Levesque Est Montreal, Qc H2L2M1 514-527-1016 http://kitchenetterestaurant.ca/en Menu: http://kitchenetterestaurant.ca/assets/files/dinner_menu.pdf
Kitchenette feels like a New York city resto. Built into an old building, small but roomy, casual setting with rough-looking wooden floor, modern tables and chairs. The open-kitchen allowed us to watch the chef busily and dutifully doing his thing. He looked so “this generation” with a wide bandanna across his forehead and tattoo sleeves, providing an edgy contrast to his prim chef whites. This place is all about contrast.
Chef Nick began his training at his mom’s catering company at the age of 9 in Houston Texas and has never left the industry since. He has worked all over the world in places like Spain, Ireland, the United States and Alaska. However, his Texan roots still shine through in his menu at Kitchenette and I so am grateful for this.
I walked in and felt instantly at ease – relaxed. You can definitely wear your most comfy pair of jeans here although, somehow it still feels like a nice night out. I remember thinking it just feels cool here – I am cool for being here. This doesn’t mean that you have to be a hipster, 2o-something to fit in – there were a variety of age groups and styles here. This restaurant is for people who love the new style of really good food.
The music was great and probably contributed to the general feeling of ease for me. Lots of 80’s rock in the general style and feel of David Bowie. The music wasn’t too loud. It was just audible over the general energetic noise level.
The restaurant is located on Rene-Levesque Est. which is pristine, wide and seemingly barren. However this stretch has the potential to make the evening much more interesting. We saw some sort of protest. A herd of people walking outside with picket signs and banners. Not sure what it was about – there were flags I did not reconize…there were people with no shirts, one guy without shirts or pants. The protest was calm and quiet. If we hadn’t looked out the window, we would have never even known they were there. They were probably just walking to the place where the actual protest was being held. lol
It is not very expensive here but you feel that maybe it should be because they use local fresh produce, organic products and carefully selected, high-quality fish. (Our lovely server explained all this to us.) This restaurant simply does not gauge their patrons.
1 point for Kitchenette and we hadn’t even eaten anything yet!
Service was just what you’d want – gracious, knowledgable and friendly.
The food….oh the food! As usual, I could not decide what to order. Here, that dilemma was amplified as there are too many interesting things on the menu. I finally settled on two – the Albacore Tuna tartar beach nachos, which we shared and the Japanese Taco with braised beef Teryaki, green goddess and daikon-jalapeno slaw, which I did not share. Both of these were delicious and refreshingly NEW. The contrast of the crunchy taco shell with the slightly sweet, braised beef and the vinegary slaw was sublime! The Albacore tuna nachos was basically tuna tartar, in a mayonnaise based mixture, over nacho chips. So great. I also tasted the Maryland crab cakes and they were increadible. They had a nice crunchy exterior but melted in your mouth. These were not made with the typical finely shredded crab; they used lump crab meat and were supreme.
Our wine was a great white Californian Chardonnay called Scribe. It was fresh, fruity and slightly buttery. I highly recommend this if you like white wine. Although I love red wines, I always go for white because I like the chilled refreshing light taste of a white, which balances out a heavy meal. But hey, that’s just me.
For our mains my husband had the smoked sirloin, lobster knuckle, tomato salad, sweet peas and bisque. He liked it but regretted his choice as soon as he saw mine. Yes! For once I chose the dish to be jealous of. I had the Beer braised short ribs with roasted garlic mashed potatoes and buttered haricots verts. I don’t like green beans. It is something that I TRY to like because I can’t accept not liking something that others seem to love. I do the same with fois-gras. I keep trying it so see if I will aquire a taste for it. I liked these green beans so much that I made them at home! Mission accomplished. The short-ribs were to die for. The meat just fell apart smothered in that beautiful BBQ sauce. It was glistening and so very good with the smooth mashed potato soaking up all the flavour. You just want to snuggle up with this dish by a fire. Beware though, the portion is quite generous. I would suggest that you don’t fill up on appetizers or bread but that is just impossible – sorry. You’ll just have to go home feeling like a happy little blimp.
Dessert? How could I have dessert after all that, you ask? I have a blog and I owe it to you guys to try a little of everything. I eat ultra-healthy during the week, just for this! We shared the Mississippi mud pie. Which was, excuse the expression, positively orgasmic. Have a chocolate craving/obsession? This will fix you right up. The base was a thick oreo-style cookie crust topped with a dense chocolate cake – the texture was almost like fudge. It is topped with a dollop of foamy cream, lightening it up a bit. It was hard to choose though with so many great items like the sticky toffee pudding sunday topped with Cracker Jacks or the bread pudding with Jack Daniels toasted pecan caramel. On a not-so-good note, the strawberry shortcake was not very good according to another diner.
Parking was tricky. The website states that on Fridays and Saturdays there is a private parking for the restaurant. We didn’t see it and were late so we parked on the street next to the restaurant.
I loved Kitchenette and cannot wait to go back! I give this resto a 4 on 5!