A'roma Meze
European Wines at A'roma Meze
A'roma Meze
A'roma Meze
A'roma Meze
A'roma Meze
A'roma Meze
A'roma Meze
Saganaki at A'roma Meze
Foods from A'roma Meze
Comments

2013 Mar 29
Pictured if the Choclate Explosion dessert. Inside the layer of dark chocolate is tiramisu. Very yummy. Absolutely recommended.

I haven't been to this original Aroma Meze for a while an the last time was in the front of the restaurant. This time, i sat in the back and the renovated back is much nicer than it was before the damage and renos.

As for the food, we went as a group and had the lunch small plates, which are even smaller than the usual small plates. (none of my colleagues wanted to share) which resulted in the preparation taking a much longer time than if we ordered a bunch of plates and shared.... this didn't put me in a very good mood as I was very hungry.

The food that I ordered, keftedes, vegetable stew (bram) and wasabi scallops on seaweed salad, was good but not the best I have had at this institution. I agree that it is a bit expensive but I have had many great experiences here so will still come back once in a while.

2012 Apr 24
I can confirm that the original restaurant on Nepean is back open with the sign outside still reading Aroma Meze. After a renovation (I believe due to a fire), there seems to be only minimal changes to the front room (our waiter told us the back room is more radically changed). They have also taken the opportunity to slightly modify the menu, although still organized under headings such as From the Garden, From the Sea, etc. As others have already mentioned, the second location on Wellington has been renamed “Santorini Greek Family Restaurant” and seems to have a different menu according to the website.

I agree with others’ comments that small plates is not the most economical way of dining but I do appreciate the variety of things you get to try with the approach.

The small plates consumed on this visit were:
- vlaxika patatakia - Yukon gold fries, mozzarella cheese with a mint-garlic aioli “sauce” — basically Greek poutine
- sesame seared feta – this was an interesting dish of a triangular piece of feta that was rolled in sesame seeds and then pan seared, it was then covered in honey (although the menu says “drizzled”), I was not sure about this dish when I ordered it but was quite happy eating it
- salmon – a decent sized piece of salmon roasted on a cedar plank topped with a cucumber, red onion & green peppercorn salad
- keftedes – four beef minted meatballs each sitting on a dollop of mashed potatoes
- eggplant moussaka – an uninspired version of layers of beef, eggplant, potatoes, zucchini, béchamel and tomato sauces

I would have to admit that this visit to Aroma Meze left me feeling disappointed - I felt that the quality of the food was subpar and the prices are particularly high for the size of the dish that is delivered to the table (~$12-15/dish for the majority of dishes). I did like the “Greek poutine” but everything else seemed dry and not overly flavourful and several of the dishes came out so hot it seem like they had been in the microwave. I will think twice about returning here.

2011 Sep 8
Went last night to A'roma Meze with SO to celebrate a milestone and to use up my Groupon before it expired. No problems there.

We walked in around 6 PM and found ourselves the only ones in the restaurant. That was a little worriesome, but after an hour of attentive service,a few glasses of wine, and tasty food (thanks to all who reviewed before me - I knew what to order and what not to order) - a good meal was had by all.

A couple of things stood out:

Surprisingly - the "Global Village" (?) salad made the most impression - filled with very fresh ingredients and a generous helping of the mildest feta I have ever had.

The filo covered beef tenderloins were also quite yummy- especially with the whipped cream - but a tad too pricey for what you get.

At 100.00 before the GROUPON - it was enjoyable - but I probably will not go again. There are too many other options at that price point - and nothing really enticing enough to make it memorable.

2011 Aug 18
I went to Aroma Meze for a congratulatory dinner a couple nights ago. I was very excited to try it as my friends have told me good things. Unfortunately I don't remember the prices of most things, but I will do my best.

Firstly, I will say that the service was not good. The front of the restaurant where we sat was empty almost all night (except for one other couple later on). There was a party of some sort in the back of the building, so maybe this is where our waiter kept disappearing? Whenever he did show up to the table I felt as though he was bothered to be there. We were making some selections and trying to decide what to order, and he was like, "Ok, you think about that and I'll be back.." half way through our order. It was not very relaxing.

I will say, however, that the food was relaxing and the wine was delicious and very reasonably priced (for a restaurant)! I love tapas, and I mostly eat Spanish Tapas, but these were very good. The food is well thought out and the ingredients go great together. This is what we had:
2 dips, we ad the Ajika (spicy) and the Tirokaferi. These are 5 dollars each, but I thought they were very good. Warning: You don't get enough pita, but you can get more - for a price.
We tried the Biftekia (hamburgers with chips it says on the menu). This is probably the one thing I was most disappointed with. They weren’t hamburgers, they were hamburger balls (4) stuffed with cheese, etc. They were good, they were not worth the price. And there were only 4 potato chips.
Eggplant roulade - our waiter suggested this instead of the eggplant moussaka. It was very good.
Filet of Sole. All three of my dining partners loved it. I am not a fish person so it wasn't for me.
Shrimp gnocchi - YUM. Very tasty and flavourful.
Saganaki - cheese that they flambé. This was very delicious, but heavy.
Potatokeftedes - potato cakes. They were good, kind of pricy for four potato cakes.
Madjool stuffed dates - this was my favourite and by far the most expensive thing we ordered (23 dollars for 4 dates). they are sweet, stuffed with gorgonzola, topped with frois gras and a candied walnut and drizzled with a sauce. YUM! I could eat them all night.
We tried three desserts, they do let you mix and match the dessert platters at the end. We tried two unremarkable desserts and then had the yogurt with honey and candied walnuts, which was unreal. So delicious.

I recommend it, if you pick carefully.

2011 May 3
I had lunch at Aroma today. I've eaten at this restaurant many many times (it's so convenient to work) and was last there in November but didn't think much of the food following that visit.

I used my Groupon today - easy.

The lunch experience has changed (again). From my last visit, there's now no set flight menu where you choose X number of dishes for X price. It's purely tapas style now where you choose your item and pay the price.

I ordered:
- Loukaniko: sausage with caramelized fennel and orange - this is always my fave, yum
- chicken spanakopita (this isn't the exact name) - it was basically little bits of shredded chicken cooked in bechamel wrapped in phyllo (no tzatziki)
- Kolokithokeftedes (fried zucchini cakes) - this one did come with tzatziki but I really wasn't fond of it. Mine came overcooked, slightly burnt.

My friend ordered:
- spinach spanakopita - she enjoyed it (no tzatziki)
- eggplant moussaka - she really enjoyed this one
- chicken brochette - 'good' portion of diced chicken but nothing special (no tzatziki)

Overall the meal was fine but I've definitely had better there. They keep changing the format of their lunch menu. Aroma used to always serve complimentary pita and tzatziki at the start of the meal - no more now.

The service was good. Our server was still new-ish but got me the answers to whatever questions I had.

Aroma will continue to be a go-to place for me. I just don't frequent it as much as I used to.

2009 Dec 16
Worth the money:

Spanakomizithra - Spinach, roasted red pepper, roasted garlic, and almonds. One of the best spinach dips ive had in a long time!!! Get this dip, you wont regret it.

Kolokithokeftedes - Crispy zucchini cakes with fresh herbs served with a splash of Tzatziki are a must!!!

Spanakopitakia - Crispy phyllo pastry stuffed with a generous portions of seasoned barrel aged feta and spinach was tasty.

Avoid:

Vlaxika Patatakia - Yukon gold fries with melted Kefalotiri cheese and garlic-mint aioli. Fries were not near crispy enough.

Baklava - endless layers of paper-thin dough filled with ground walnuts and drizzled with honey-lemon nectar blend. Seemed extra dry to me, not worth it. Needs more moisture.


2009 Oct 31
We had a pleasant experience overall, but there were enough disappointments that we both found it to be somewhat overpriced.

Drinks: Wifey's Cosmopolitan was just okay -- a bit flat tasting, and steep for what it was at $9. I asked for a glass of Spanish Quarter Cabernet Sauvignon - Tempranillo, which I found to be perfect. The by-the-glass wines are available in 3 or 5 oz pours, and prices are reasonable. Water was brought without us asking, refilled occasionally, but then left empty towards the end of the meal.

The Spanakopitakia were top notch -- beautiful flaky phyllo, tasty feta, and a hint of mint along with the spinach. $8 for 4 pastries.

The Loukaniko sausage was of excellent quality, sliced into rounds, with a tasty (sweet, but appropriate) glaze of orange and caramelized fennel. The portion was huge and filling, and well priced at $12.

The Octopodaki (charred marinated octopus) was the biggest disappointment. Wifey is Portuguese, and a huge fan of nicely grilled tender octopus. This one was neither. Most pieces were chewy, and there was no evidence of charring in the flavour. The portion was small, and incredibly overpriced at $19. We'd have been disappointed even if it cost $4.

The Calamari Two Ways was also unimpressive. The tiny stuffed grilled squid were tasty but tough and dry. The fried squid rings were nicely salted and crispy, but again chewy and dry. Can't recommend this either. ($13)

The Saganaki was fantastic. Super filling and beautifully tasty. Ours didn't flame quite as high as the one in the photo here (or the one at the table next to us) but that's no problem because we don't eat the flame! ;-) Highly recommended at $10.

For dessert, I wasn't thrilled with my Baklava. A giant portion, but really quite dry and bland compared to what I'm used to. They use exclusively walnuts so that might explain part of it. The honey syrup puddled on the plate was the best I've encountered. This is surely an establishment of extremes!

My wife's Galaktoboureko was good. The semolina custard was dense and refreshingly cold. Desserts were each $6.

In the end, we were glad to have gone there, but both agreed that our $100 + tip would get us a better small plates experience at Play. But if you're looking for Greek-Mediterranean small plates, you can do well at A'roma if you choose carefully.

2009 Sep 17
Despite my previous entry, it didn't take long before I returned to my beloved Aroma Meze. Yes, I did manage to get over the initial shock of the flight menu selection being reduced from four items to three.

Had lunch there today. Aroma didn't disappoint.

I pared down my selection (by one) and even tried one of the new items on the menu (I'm pretty sure they've added about a handful of new ones and removed a few of the previous ones).

The meal was good and very filling.

Everything is *right* in the world again. : P

2009 Sep 2
Grrrr. I loved Aroma Meze. I ate lunch here at least once a month. Went today to find that they changed their flight menu. Rather than being able to select four items for the set price of $15.95, it is now three items for the set price of $13.95. Perhaps I am being overly rigid, but my first reaction was disappointment and we decided to leave … in protest I guess. It just came as a shock.

The server explained that they were seeing too much waste by offering the four-item selection. Too bad for me, since I always gobbled up my plate. I have my four favourites which I can tick off the piece of paper blind-folded. I have to wonder - who are these ppl with 'lesser' appetites running around Ottawa. AM doesn't serve large portions. Theirs are fair and just enough so who are these ppl leaving leftovers.

Patrons can still order more items for $4 an item, but I was used to, and fond of, the old system. Plus while the difference is only $2 if you order another item, given the revised price, for those of us who frequently AM regularly, it just doesn't seem right. But hey, I know I'm not the one running the business and losing out on money on wasted food. It's just one of those "too bad" things.

Anyhow, I think the server was surprised that we decided to leave. She was nice enough about it. I felt slightly bad - didn't want her to think I was lashing out at anything she did.

I'm not going to boycott AM but it may take a bit before I go back. I feel like I've suddenly woken up old and cranky, musing about the 'old' days.

2009 Jul 6
I've been to A'roma Meze on Nepean once before, with a friend I'd met on a trip to Greece. She loved the restaurant so much that she still talks about coming back to A'roma Meze when she's in town.

Ever since my first visit, I've been wanting to bring our more adventurous dining friends here. We finally made it out on Saturday night. I was excited that they were able to accomodate us, as they were full the last time we tried to go.

Sadly, our visit didn't live up to my previous experience. Service was very slow, despite the restaurant being half-empty on a Saturday night. But with 2 groups and a half-dozen smaller tables, it was more than they seemed to be able to handle. We ordered 4 dishes for the first round and they took a minimum of 15 minutes to arrive and often we were left waiting for items to come. Some of the hot dishes were cold when they arrived, such as the lamb sausages.

While the food tasted great, the portion size vs. price ratio is a little disappointing, such as $9 for 4 small dolmades. Granted these are not the same generic dolmades you buy at the grocery store, it's pretty pricey for something the size of my thumb.

The highlight dishes for me were the kangaroo skewers, the dips and the calamari two ways, though I didn't get a chance to try to stuffed ones as there were only 2 on the plate. The crispy ones were great and actually fresh!

In hindsight, we realized that A'roma Meze, although a tapas-style cuisine, does not lend itself well to groups of more than 4, as all their dishes are a maximum of 4 servings. We also recommend you order everything at once, so there is a good rotation of food on the table and you're not left waiting for the next dish to arrive. The server did recommend we order 2 of everything, but we honestly never expected such a long wait for the dishes to arrive.

At the end of the night, I regretted having been the one to suggest we go to A'roma Meze. Many of the people in our group stopped at fast food place on the way home. There are other tapas-style restaurants in the city that are a better value.

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2007 Feb 10
Delicious and the staff know their wines.

2007 Jan 10
It' s a very nice restaurant. I really suggest this restaurant for all the foodies who like mediterranean flavours and atmospheres. Very interesting wine list with many good sicilian and greek wines that match very well with all the plates. Even the service at the tables is good and that's a real rarity in Ottawa. I feel always at home in this restaurant



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2008 Apr 30
This really should read 'Wine' instead of European wines. Their extensive wine list features a good selection from the Mediterranean, but also Canada, the US and South America. The wine list has a comment on it saying that is a work in progress, so it's constantly changing. And there is a very good selection of wines by the glass.

The wine service here is excellent. The Carmenère I ordered was at a good temperature, slightly chilled so it wasn't too overdone.

First off, they have the proper glasses for white and red wines. That impressed me, as you don't see that all too often, let alone good quality red and white wine glasses.

Secondly, when you order a wine by the glass, the server brings the bottle to your table and pours it in front of you. I really liked this as I could see how old the bottle was (as in it hadn't been open long) and that I was really getting the wine I ordered.

2007 Nov 22
A'roma Meze has a good selection of Spanish wines. Montecillo Crianza Roja 2003 is one of these. 100% Tempranillo grape, dry, full body, peppery with low tannin and a medium-long finish. Aromas of red cherry, strawberry and black spices in the mouth. To try with lamb chops. Cheap and good!

2007 Jan 11
Good selection of wines from all the Mediterranean Countries. Their wine list has many unknown bottles but very interesting for wine lovers. Red Xinomavro from Nemea and white Assyrtiko from Santorini island are good choices for many Greek dishes at the right price. The super traditional Greek Retsina is for who wants to play safe but, don't forget to drink it in the smallest glass(a greek version of short).



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2008 Apr 30
There's a picture on this page of the Saganaki being flambéd. The cheese was very good quality - a strong flavour and not over-cooked, nor rubbery. It was really good.

2007 Apr 12
We went to A'roma again last week with fellow foodies Candice & Mendel - so they can help out with the "review". Really we just wanted to show the photos of some of our favourites.

We began with the saganaki cheese...



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