Allium
Allium
Allium
Allium
Allium
Hamburgers at Allium
Allium
Allium
Allium
Allium
Allium
Banoffee Pie at Allium
Allium
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Allium
Allium
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Allium
Foods from Allium
Comments

2011 Jan 9
tried allium on saturday night 8pm for the first time and was very impressed.

i'd describe the atmosphere as laid back and casual. i'm not a dressing up for dinner kind of person, but went for black slacks instead of jeans. it turns out i would have felt perfectly comfortable in jeans.

our service was slow and relaxed. we were slightly neglected because our waiter was busy. we did enjoy our waiter when he was there. he had a lot of tables, so it wasn't as if he was just hanging out at the bar. he was personable and chatty when we talked to him.

we had a gin martini and a glass of prosecco to start. we were starving and would have ordered our appetizer right then as well, but the waiter disappeared so quickly we didn't have chance. we finished our cocktail before he showed up again.

we order the quebec cheese plate to share. this came with 3 different cheeses, a fruit preserve/chutney and some crisps. the cheese was great - it would have been even better if we knew what it was. the server who dropped it off knew the names, but nothing about it and promised to send over a waiter to tell us more. by the time our waiter showed up, we were finished so he was just guessing.

for mains, i ordered the only vegetarian option. it was a quinoa and mushroom tart, topped with roasted veggies and tomatoes, parmesan cheese slices, pesto swirled around the plate and a deep fried egg. the egg seemed out of place, but it was all good. the tart and roasted veggies were too similar in texture and taste, which i find an issue with most vegetarian mains. this was still good and i was happy with the selection.

my husband ordered the chef's special. this is whatever the chef feels like making. you don't get to specify anything and you also don't know the price. only for people who enjoy all kinds of food. his main turned out to be butter poached lobster, with green beans, some type of mushroom in hollandaise sauce and a potato crouquette. he wouldn't have ordered it if it had been on the menu, but was happy with it. the taste was great, but as he said, who doesn't love lobster. he would have been even more happy with something slightly more daring.

for dessert, we shared the banoffee pie. it was delicious.

we had asked for a 1/2 litre of wine. the waiter brought a full bottle and left it with us before i knew what was happening. we didn't correct the mistake and just kept the full bottle. we weren't bothered by it since it was a celebration dinner.

total with taxes and 15% tip was $185.

2010 Dec 13
I would say this is my favourite spot in Ottawa. We do regular Monday night tapas. The menu is different each week, and so to explain the dishes is, well, moot...other than to say they have many hits, scarcely a miss.

Delicious, local, wonderful plates...great service, great atmosphere, great food. Very consistent in quality, in fact, tonight I could have been in New York City (I have lived there and just got back from a girls wknd).

Nice to have a resto bringing something fine to this city. Thanks Allium xx

2010 Nov 22
This was one of the better meals I have had in Ottawa. Ever.

I've been meaning to try Allium for a little while now after perusing their menu a few times online and really liking what I saw. It seems that they somehow manage to fly a little under the radar though, and I only got around to giving them a shot this weekend.

I started off with a cheese board, which was everything I wanted and more. I'm always tentative about ordering cheese boards. Are they appetizers? Are they desserts? I don't know where they fit, but I bit the bullet and got one for an appetizer and there is no turning back now. I completely forget any of the names of the cheeses I tried (there were three), but I really enjoyed them all and they were well accompanied by crisps, grapes, apples, pears and a tasty oniony-fruity chutney.

For my main I chose the lone vegetarian entree, "Squash-Cheddar Tart/Le Corpin Mushrooms/ Roasted Pepper-Goat Cheese Puree/Quinoa/ Pecans/Truffled Beets/Fried Egg". Perfectly executed. The dish was beautifully presented and the flavours were spot on - it really tasted of comfort food to me with the squash and cheddar. I'm getting hungry again just thinking about how good this was.

For dessert my partner and I shared the banana-toffee pie, which was also very comfort-foody-y. It is quite large as well, so very conducive to sharing.

I had a few cocktails over the course of the evening which were also spot on, namely the 'Moscow Mule' - a mixture of Stoli, ginger beer, lime juice and pickled ginger. Yum.

The only fault I found with Allium was the service felt a little rushed at times. The appetizers came out within 3 minutes of ordering and we ate the entire meal (and I eat slowly) in just over an hour. Minor detail, but it would have been nice to have a more relaxed pace.

Definitely, definitely will be back.

2010 Nov 1
I go here for lunch every once in a while, dinner as well. I recently had a burger which was quite amazing - topped with raw milk cheddar cheese, tomato jam, generous amounts of bacon, pickled onion, lettuce... the patty was HUGE, delicious and not dry at all. It came with a small side of fries with smoky chipotle mayo. Yum. I had a half pint of Beau's Night Marzen with it, which was wünderbar. Hintonburg might have just become the city's best spot for a burger - Hintonburger, Hino, Allium & Absinthe all have bangin' burgs in the h-burg! I love this neighborhood! Oh yeah, the service was great as usual, and the prices were comparable to other restaurants in the area ($13 for the burger - $3.50 for a half pint).

2010 Oct 15
Made it out for dinner this evening here with the BF and a friend. Very cute atmosphere but LOUD due to the open concept-ness of the place, not unbearable though - good tunes. I split the mushroom appetizer with my friend and it was mind blowing - this coming from an admitted fungophile - but incredibly rich, about 4 different kinds of mushrooms in a great cream sauce served on a toast with heirloom tomato "ketchup" (more of a chutney, but either way that was super tasty too!). This was also BIG - it could easily serve one person as a main, much too big as a first course for just one person. I got the vegetarian main which was truly delicious - quinoa cakes with creamy goat cheese, walnuts and butternet squash puree. I must say I am consistently impressed with veg mains at places like this (the Wellington, Urban Pear, Juniper, Murray Street too), more so than the seafood options I've gone for at similar restaurants. For all you omnivores out there I'd recommend trying one for a change, you'll be delighted at the quality and the price... veg dishes tend to be considerably cheaper than their meaty menu buddies! Service was great, and their wine menu was reasonable as well (a nice change from the minimum $10 per glass that's become the norm with the new crop of wine bars around Ottawa... beyond ridiculous!). Highly recommended!

2010 Oct 5
Oh oh .... Food porn here at Allium's spot ... with no descriptions !!

Where have I seen this before ?

2010 Oct 4
Pictures from my meal at Allium on Friday night! Steak frites, this was uber yummy!

2010 Oct 4
Pictures from my meal at Allium on Friday night! Maple glazed duck breast!

2010 Oct 4
Pictures from my meal at Allium on Friday night! Chef's Choice app, fish cakes.

2010 Aug 25
So I went to Allium to celebrate my birthday. I had been there previously a few times for tapas and was very excited to go again (but then found out that their tapas menu is only available on Monday nights). Still, I decided to give their full dinner menu a try.

The first thing I noticed when we were seated was that they had changed the dining room completely, but also how NOISY it was. It's great for the restaurant's success that most of their tables were almost full on a Tuesday night. But I could not believe how loud it was in there - all night. It was louder than the bar we had gone to before our reservation. Whether it's always like that or if it was just that specific crowd, I was very disappointed in the noise level.

Our server did his job well the whole night and was very punctual and efficient. During our dinner, my date clumsily dropped his fork (twice!) and the server was there in 3 seconds to replace it for him. I don't know how he even heard the fork drop through all of the noise that was going on!

After he served us our wine, some bread arrived with a bit of whipped dill butter. I try not to be so picky about these type of things but I'm still going to say it - if you can't make really really great bread, buy from somewhere else (like Art-is-in, for instance). I can appreciate that the chef is trying to make everything in-house but honestly, the bread was equivalent to something I (a beginner bread-baker) could make at home.

We were served our first courses. I had the roasted carrot and brie soup, which was absolutely perfectly done. I ate it up so quickly I forgot to save my date a taste! He had the crispy calamari - he thought it was the most perfectly cooked calamari he's ever had and the side slaw was great. There wasn't enough mayo on the dish for all of the calamari on the plate and it probably could've used a bit more salt.

For the main course, I ordered the rare tuna. And when I order tuna, I've always expected a beautifully seared crust and a nice tender, deep pink inside. I could tell that this piece of tuna was either not cooked in a hot enough pan (it was almost too cooked to be 'rare') OR it was not seared at all. I guess I can't complain about that part too much because it does not specify the method of cooking on the menu. My 'crispy shallots' tasted as though they were in a tempura batter but had been cooked the day before. Also, the tuna was served on a piece of stale bread. I think it would've been better to replace it more beets and patty pan squash!

My date ordered the surf n' turf. He said the steak was cooked perfectly, the fish cake was fabulously smoked and he loved the crispy pork belly. However, he said it looked as though all of the components were crammed on to the dish and he was disappointed in the small single scallop that was included.

We decided on the cheese board for dessert. The cheeses were great and I wish I could've remembered the names of them. Unfortunately, the cheese accompaniments were nowhere up to standards. The crostini was...just terrible and the fruit ended up being cantaloupe, apple and an apple chutney (I believe). The melon did absolutely nothing for the cheese and the chutney tasted like pure onion. Again, we really loved the choice of cheeses, just not the accompaniments.

I'm sorry to say but my whole dining experience was almost ruined by the volume of noise that continued the whole two hours we were there.

As many complaints as I had, I did not leave the restaurant completely unsatisfied and I'd definitely give it another shot (especially because I've had great food there before).

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2010 Oct 4
Pictures from my meal at Allium on Friday night! My super yummy dessert...banoffee pie! (If you have time check out my blog, www.adventuresofanottawafoodie.wordpress.co , there is more about Allium!)


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2006 Oct 4
For a place that otherwise seemed happy to emphasize local and seasonal items, it was surprising to see only a few Canadian wines (2 red, 4 white, all from Niagara). Otherwise, the wine list seemed concise (like the menu) and well-balanced -- something for everyone.


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2012 Apr 13
Had an amazing salad here the other night for a light supper. There are many places that serve an upscale salad, several of which fall short. This one is stellar.

Referred to as “Lettuces” on the new spring menu, the large bowl was brimming with bibb lettuce with cucumbers, carrots and tomatoes but the flavours came from the mixture of cranberries, candied quinoa and carrot‐lemon puree and then lightly covered with a mint‐lemon dressing. To top it off it was beautifully presented with a smear of cranberry puree which looked like it had been painted onto the bowl.


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2008 Mar 20
I had the vegetarian lasagne currently on the menu (without the cheese). I was layers of grilled veggies, wild rice pancake, tomato sauce and something crispy (pasta perhaps?). That night, the butternut squash and apple soup was vegan, so I had that to start. I certainly didn't have the problem that I sometimes have when there aren't many veggie options on the menu where I come away hungry! I was offered a fruit plate for dessert (since none of the desserts were vegan). It was definitely plentiful and interesting in presentation with lots of variety of fruit. The raspberries were incredibly fresh and flavourful for this time of year.

2006 Oct 4
In the two different menus I've seen, Allium has had at least one creative vegetarian main; I tried one (with tofu served like a risotto layered with various vegetables). Appetizers, however, showed less creativity -- last time I went, only the soup and salad were vegetarian.




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2013 Apr 5
Enjoyed the lunch burger yesterday. Thick, juicy, tasty seasoned patty, generous ingredients. Their little brown fries are pretty addictive too. A most hearty lunch for $14!