Hamburgers at Allium
Banoffee Pie at Allium
Foods from Allium

2012 Mar 6
I hate to bring attention to Monday tapas nights at Allium because it is already busy enough and you often cannot get in without a reservation but I had such a lovely evening that I cannot keep it to myself.

An innovative idea for what is normally a slow restaurant night, chef/owner Arup Jana offers tapas night on Mondays. Patrons can choose from a fairly large selection of small plates which allows you to order as few or as many as you want, depending on your appetite (prices range from approx. $6 to $15).

We have visited several Mondays and this last visit did not disappoint, we enjoyed:
- Greens with dried cranberries and a delish dressing
- Duck breast on top of a mixture of mushrooms
- Large shrimps in an amazing cilantro coconut sauce
- Flat iron steak perfectly cooked
- Wonderfully flavoured tuna tartar with crosini
- Fries, thinly cut and with a chipotle mayo
- Bonoffie pie – fantastic crumbled biscuit pie base topped with a mixture of bananas and caramel and topped with whipped cream – I cannot get enough of this!

Looking forward to returning!

2012 Feb 9
Allium Steak Frites - Flat Iron

Steak was a little more cooked than I wanted given that I asked for raw but it was still very tasty and I am glad I added the sautéed mushrooms.

I had their Caesar mix to begin and loved the roasted green onion and bacon that was served as garnish.

I also loved the fact that they had Crozes-Hermitage on their red wine list (and by the glass too).

This was my 5th trip to Allium and I think this was the best. The first time when I had the duck with foie gras was also very memorable.

A place I absolutely recommend for a fairly casual gathering with friends or on a date. it's very good but with reasonable place and a relaxed ambience.

2011 Dec 11
I go here fairly frequently for lunch with a few mates. One of them loves the burger, which I have yet to try.

The other fellow and I like to try the newer items we always see on the lunch menu. Friday I had the mac&cheese which has replaced their mushroom risotto dish. First let me say that the mushroom risotto was awesome. I don't know what kind of onions (alliums) they were using, but it had the most amazingly oniony taste. The m&c was made with some lovely gruyere cheese and the macaroni was perfectly tender. Just a nice bit of chew. Both dishes used porcini mushrooms which are sometimes hard to keep from getting tough, but have always been nice and tender.

Both times I've had the creme brulee for dessert and it is really good as well. A lot of vanilla in the custard and the top was nicely burnt with just a thin crust to punch through. The coffee is quite good as well.

They have Steamwhistle, Beau's Lugtread and a Kitchessipi blonde and few others on tap as well as a good looking wine list. Good whiskey sours, too. The caesar with a strip of skewered bacon was interesting.

2011 Nov 8
Hubby and I go here every year on our anniversary, and as often as we can(very rare) in between. We always get the steak frites(with blue cheese<-- which we both hate on it's own, oddly) and then we play with desserts and appetizers.

Last time we were there we had the cheese plate, which was absolutely incredible, and the soups and salads are always delish.

I just can't wait till we go back!

2011 Aug 27
Hubby and I went for lunch this past Friday. The place was quite noisy. Though it was quite crowded, I think the noise has more to do with the acoustic of the room rather than the people.

I ordered a cup of potato soup to start. It was very good. Steak frites was quite good too, especially the steak (not so much the frites). The steak goes very well with my glass of Valpolicella Ripasso. Yum!

My husband ordered calamari to start. It was okay. The scallop is okay but not great either. We shared the flourless chocolate cake as dessert. It was quite satisfying.

I am going back to try the tapa on Monday with my girl friends.

2011 Aug 27
Came here for lunch for a going-away party being throw for people at work. Pretty much the entire office came out, which put the group at approximately 30 people.

Ordered the calamari, the steak frites and two scoops of Pascale's ice cream. The calamari was ok. The squid wasn't covered in batter but the batter kept on falling off. Regardless, it was tasty but I thought it was really expensive for the price.

I asked for the steak to be cooked medium and medium was what I got. This was a really tender piece of steak. Each bite was flavourful and so so juicy. I was really happy with this and trying to savour every bite. The frites were very good too. I probably would have ordered the basket of fries as an app instead of the calamari if I knew how good they were beforehand.

I ordered one scoop each of Pascale's blueberry-lavender and the strawberry-maple vinegar (the maple vinegar may be something else as I didn't hear the server very clearly) ice cream. I believe that Allium did not temper the ice cream like Pascale suggests on her web site as I found the initial bites to be hard and icy. As the ice cream warmed up, the flavours of the ice cream bloomed a lot more. I smelled the lavender more than I tasted it. And I definitely didn't taste the maple vinegar. My friend said she tasted the lavender but didn't taste the maple vinegar. Overall, I enjoyed both flavours but I have a stronger preference for the strawberry-maple vinegar.

Considering that this was a group of 30, service at the start was extremely well done. Plates came out extremely quickly. However, getting the server's attention to find out Pascale's flavours (there were 9 different flavours!) was definitely a hassle but I believe there were only two servers covering the entire restaurant and by that point, the restaurant was entirely full. So my advice would be to know what you're ordering at the start so you aren't trying to get your server afterwards.

Overall, extremely satisfying and great value at lunch for the price point if you know what you're ordering.

2011 Jul 30
Keep walking!

This was a train wreck that I should have recognized when the t-shirted servers seated me in a pretentiously un-pretentious attempt at new food. My second sign to run was the kitchen staff drinking out of a serving dish.

Someone thought that a chef's mystery choice would add an element of surprise to the unimaginative and bland menu. I like other patrons begged the server to reveal the secret, given that the other offerings were so poor. The bread was in-edible (I honestly can not remember being unable to eat the bread at another restaurant) and the butter was somehow poor also.!?

I opted for the chicken and my wife had the steak frite (both ~30$). The chicken was so poor it was inedible and the beans had not even had the dead parts removed. They were cooked to a point where burnt would have been an improvement. The Steak was nearly inedible, but they can make french fries as good as anyone with a Deep fryer.

The Chef who has worked at better dining establishments, either needs to be throttled or seriously re-consider his chosen profession. This was not poor it was a gastronomic train wreck.

However he managed to market and manage the Westboro sheep into believing in his snake oil, so if this continues, then he may be around for a while. If you enjoy this place, please remain, it will keep the far better offerings in Ottawa less cluttered with sheeple.

2011 May 21
Been there twice now. I intend to return whenever I'm in Ottawa. Excellent food yet completely unpretentious...a perfect mix. Why can't there be more like it? I hope Ottawans recognize what a gem they've got here.

2011 Apr 21
This has become one of my favorite places for lunch in the Wellington West area despite having so many options.

I had the cup of cremini mushroom soup to go with my pan-fried rainbow trout that was delicious.

In the past I have also enjoyed their cheeseburger for lunch (the best in the neighborhood, I think) and their is a nice selection of local brews on tap.

All the lunch items vary from $13-17, very reasonable imo for the quality.

Good service as well makes it easy to get in and out in less than an hour.

2011 Mar 18
Visited with my wife on a quiet Thursday evening. The dining room was about 1/4 full, probably because people were at the pubs for St Paddy's Day. The greeting was cheery, with a kind offer to take our coats. Lighting was too dark for no-flash photos but good for eating.

I started with a Gin Martini -- excellent as expected, but made nicer by our server asking for details. Do you have a preference of gin? Bombay Sapphire. And with olives? Yes please! Wifey opted for a Limonata.

Four slices of housemade baguette arrived with some nice maple brown butter. We shared the Mushrooms on Toast as an appetizer. This was truly delicious but -- contrary to Sam the Hungry's experience -- a little too small for two. Our server offered more bread, which we gratefully accepted. However, by the time it arrived we had already polished off our shroomy little app. Also (and I've been experiencing this everywhere lately) what's up with bringing more bread but no more butter with the second round?

Wifey had the Allium Steak Frites - Flat Iron, which featured one of the more delectable sliced steaks I've encountered. She asked for Medium and the meat was still very tender. Huge thumbs up for that! Not so stellar were the "frites", which were stubby little brown skin-on things. More like what you find at the bottom of your cardboard chip wagon box than the thin, golden fries one usually finds with steak frites. Yes, this is a personal preference thing. Nice aioli! The beef was served on a bed of green beans, which helpfully raised it off the plate and the surprising puddle of oil that sat thereupon.

I went with the Surf 'N Turf, which our server informed me was being made with Filet rather than NY Strip. This included 5 smallish but absolutely stellar sea scallops. Perfectly cooked and perfectly salted! The honey-pear relish complemented the scallops well. Also on the plate were curried cauliflower (with an unexpected kick for this type of food), a large and yummy potato croquette patty, and a tiny (2.5" long) portion of true filet mignon. Like my wife's flat iron, the filet was perfectly done (medium rare for me) and well seasoned. I didn't think the foie gras mousse on top added much to the filet so I enjoyed it separately.

Sharing a small app meant we had room for two desserts. Wifey had the famous Banoffee Pie. This is very good but over-the-top sweet for our tastes. I had the Pudding, which was served in the same Old Fashioned glasses they use for water, and was as awesome as it sounds: light milk chocolate pudding topped with a gorgeous salty peanut brittle, drizzled with salted caramel, topped with a scoop of banana ice cream, what appeared to be whipped cream, and a garnish of chocolate shavings. Nice one! We both found the pudding to be better than the pie.

We sat for 15 minutes longer than would have been ideal because we were kind of ignored around bill time and our server was very busy with food and wine at a table of four. We eventually resorted to the infamous "palm-poking" gesture to indicate our desire for a bill from across the room.

So all in all a good experience! Foods were perfectly cooked and flavours were well balanced, perhaps lacking a little of the depth and subtlety you find at higher end restaurants. The prices here are a little lower, so that's perfectly fine. $105 + tip for a tasty repast!

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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, , there is more about Allium!)

Wine 1


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.

Salad 1


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.

Steak 1




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.



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!