Le Baccara
Le Baccara
Le Baccara
Le Baccara
Le Baccara
Le Baccara
Le Baccara
Foie Gras at Le Baccara
Foods from Le Baccara

2013 Apr 2
Ate at Le Baccara on Saturday night for a friends birthday (12 people).

The service was impeccable, from start to finish.

Spiced nuts, Parmesan crisps with cumin and shortbreads were served first, followed by a selection of breads. Multi grain, white and an interesting molasses bread with figs were offered.

We were served an amuse bouche of steak carpaccio with micro greens and mushrooms on a stripe of cualiflower pure and my wife, who usually shies away from raw meat AND mushrooms cleaned her plate with a slice of bread.

My starter was bison tartar with with a tempura fried quail egg. My only complaint on this item was the quail egg. While it was crispy and delicious, I feel that it was over cooked. Had the yolk been runny the richness of this dish would have been off the charts. My wife started with a salad and it was very well presented, including beets which were delicious.

We both had the same main course, which I must admit I regret since we had an opportunity to try something different had we gotten different mains. Regardless, the lobster and veal surf and turf was outstanding. Pan seared lobster tail and claw meat served with a perfectly cooked veal filet on a potato disk with wilted greens and a wonderful sauce made with veal and beef bones. The depth of flavour on the sauce alone was out of this world.

For dessert we shared a creme brle, which was tasty, but maybe a little bit less set up in terms of the custard than we are used to. The small almond cake with lychee sorbet served on top of the brle was delicious, but may have been better served off the side since cutting into it caused it to shatter the sugar under it and mix with the brle custard.

Overall a VERY good meal and I can't say enough about the service. Pulling off a service for 12 people is hard enough, doing it so that everyone feels like they have their own waiter is something else.

Will definitely return.

2009 Feb 18
le baccara @ casino lac leamy: assorted complementary candies. this restaurant had one of the most memorable taste and service was excellent and respect of the highest order was experienced. a most definite return.

2009 Feb 18
le baccara @ casino lac leamy: coffee themed desert - coffee sorbet on brown sugar crisp, coffee mousse cake and coffee gello cubes with a splash of caramel.

2009 Feb 18
le baccara @ casino lac leamy: lamb tenderloin wrapped with a herbed bacon, potato gratin, baby root vegetables and splashed specialty mushrooms in a tasty gravy.

2009 Feb 18
le baccara @ casino lac leamy: halibut grilled with cognac reduction on fennel, cylindered mashed potato with grilled parmesan and garnished with a meat sauce.

2009 Feb 18
le baccara @ casino lac leamy: pan seared scallop, crispy tempura prawn on mixed root vegetable gratin garnished with butternut squash dressing. the taste explosion was fantastic and memorable.

2009 Feb 18
le baccara @ casino lac leamy: duck foie gras on crouton, duck foie gras candied and also moussed with mint jelly. the service from 5 servers was impeccable. as soon as i was done the dish, within seconds the plate was wisked off and new appropriate cutlery was replaced for the subsequent dish. i have never been given this much respect at a restaurant. this place has my full kudos.

2009 Feb 18
le baccara @ casino lac leamy: rabbit pate with crouton and microgreens.

2007 Sep 30
Menu Gastronomique

We estimate that our tasting menu allowed us to enjoy no less than 60 separate food items if you count garnishes, toppings, drizzles, dressings, and sauces. (Yes, they are all good enough to be enjoyed separately.)

As we reviewed the menu, we were given a small amuse-bouche of fantastic roasted salted nuts (pecan, pistachio, almond) and some olive crispbreads with a tomato spread.

Bread service was generous, offering slices of multigrain, whole wheat, and white baguettes. The white was probably Art-Is-In but lacked the extreme saltiness of the regular kind. Butter was nicely shaped into a bevel-topped cylinder and served in its own silver dish.

The Menu Gastronomique starts with a chef-selected amuse-bouche. We were given an amazing slice of sweetbreads with a truffle dressing. I think I started grinning at this point and didn't stop for the rest of the meal.

Lobster wrapped in 1 millimetre thick slices of pear and served with tiny morsels of pan-seared tuna was stunning. The plate also featured two tiny and delicious cylinders of some vegetable topped with Quebec caviar.

Langoustine tail with scallop was incredibly tasty. After a bad experience at Issac's in Kanata, I've been sort of avoiding scallops. This perfectly cooked scallop has put me back on track! :) The accompanying squash puree on a thick oatmeal pancake was very nice.

Foie gras was nicely browned and served with a veal and duck gravy drizzle. The rhubarb compote and maple-glazed pineapple contrasted the foie grease very well.

At this point, we were kind of rolling our eyes at each other, wondering how we could ever continue eating after that. The answer came with the next course.

A scoop of pear granita arrived, served atop an ornately formed block of ice under which a blue light cast a mysterious icy glow. As the waiter brought our two glowing palate-cleansers to our table, other diners looked up with curiosity. This event stood out as somewhat uncharacteristic of Baccara, but I have to say the blueness of it was very cool. After dousing the foie gras richness with this treat we were amazingly ready for more!

The main course was only slightly larger than the others. The rack of lamb was so perfectly cooked, nicely peppered and salted (with fleur de sel), and yielded very willingly to our elegant French-made steak knives. Miniature root vegetables were great, as was the fried truffle and goat cheese ravioli.

The Quebec cheese plate was a joy. Four wonderful cheeses, each tasty in its own way. Accompanied by a scoop of pleasantly sweet fruit relish, a pile of delicious raisins with almonds and dried cranberries, and tiny diamond-shaped jellies made from red wine.

Dessert was an ooey-gooey warm chocolate tart served with a scoop of lime sorbet. There was a line of delicious milk chocolate sauce and another of clear-with-lime-zest syrup. The tiny scoop of lime sorbet sat atop a penny-sized disk of almond and caramelized sugar. It was applied to the plate while still hot and sticky, then cooled so it could act as a sort of glue to hold the sorbet in place. Its other purpose was as an insulator to impede the transfer of heat energy from the plate into the sorbet. Awesome!

Finally, there was the Mignardises course. A dessert plate containing tiny chocolates, cookies, and a tart. Very nicely done, with one chocolate containing gold "Baccara" lettering and the tart featuring a delicate buttery crust with impossibly fresh blueberries, a tiny raspberry, and a light and tasty cream filling.

My tea was served free of charge, even though that fact was not mentioned on the menu. Similarly, our bubbly and flat bottled waters were also included in the meal cost. This is the height of classiness -- given the price of the menu, nickel and diming me for bottled water would seem almost crass.

Yes, this meal was brutally expensive ($115 per person plus wine plus tax plus tip), but we felt it was worth it!

2007 Sep 29
100% perfection! I'm usually able to come up with *something* negative to say about any dining experience -- especially one that lasts 3 hours and involves so many courses. But in the case of Baccara, I admit defeat. Okay, I came up with one: when the waiter served me the sumptuous dual foie gras dish (one on a rhubarb compote, the other on a chunk of maple-glazed pineapple), he inadvertently tilted the plate a little and the slice on the right slid about 3 millimetres away from the location the chef had intended. ;-)

Wifey and I came here for a very special dinner. We opted to have the "Menu Gastronomique" -- nine-step tasting menu, to be enjoyed by the entire table (i.e. both of us).

I ordered my traditional Cinzano aperitif. The price was the same as the one I had at Stella Osteria last weekend ($6), except this was a much larger serving (as it should be) and came with a thick slice of lemon and exactly the right amount of ice. Just goes to show you that classiness and expertise do not always come at a higher price. Also, some French restaurants can beat some Italian restaurants at their own game. :)

Chairs are large and upholstered, well-suited for lingering over an extravagant meal. The restaurant is situated at the rear of the Casino's top floor, as far from the din of slot machines as possible (you don't hear any of it when sitting at your table), and there are beautiful views of Lac Leamy with its landmark fountain.

Bathrooms are worth a visit! The first door gets you into an antechamber where you select a second door appropriate to your gender. This takes you to another room with a mirror and a number of closed doors. Opening one of the doors gives you access to a private bathroom where you can do your business. Hand towels come in the form of neatly stacked, burgundy, Baccara-embroidered terry cloths. Very snazzy!

We've had some pretty amazing service in the past but never better than last night. Service was formal but friendly at the same time (I still don't quite understand how they achieved that). A couple of servers even made small, harmless jokes about the food (e.g. that my choice of "flat" water instead of the bubbly kind means I get something that looks like water but is in fact pure gin). Nobody was too familiar but everyone was friendly. We had the option to completely ignore the service if we wanted, or we could simply glance up and get immediate attention. Between courses, our fresh cutlery appeared like magic. As each dish was served, it was described in full detail -- right down to the drizzles and sauces that graced the plate.

The choreography of the service was as though it had been scripted, and it felt like we were the only table in the room. Here's a general idea of what happened for each course:

* Course is served by one waiter
* We enjoy the food (maybe someone appears to top up water, maybe not -- we only notice this if we want to).
* Food finished - wait about 30 seconds
* Someone discreetly whisks away the empty plates (no stacking or rattling)
* Within one minute, our fresh cutlery is served: the fork from our left side and the knife from our right.
* As we happily talk about our last course, we wait no more than 5 minutes for the next one.

Our primary waiter, who was very francophone, impressed me by perfectly pronouncing my last name upon presenting me with the credit card receipt. Even native anglophones often have trouble getting the emphasis on the correct syllable.

I really didn't feel comfortable taking any pictures in this restaurant. Some things are meant to remain sacred. Suffice it to say that presentation is as beautiful as you can imagine. Ingredients are perfectly fresh and incredibly flavoured. Balance of seasonings is perfect (you will *not* get anyone asking if you want fresh ground pepper on your food here).

I'll post specific food information in another comment.




2007 May 15
Served 2 ways, with candied figs and pistachios.


2007 Sep 30
We aren't huge wine drinkers, so we each just had a glass. Wifey asked for a recommendation for white and was not disappointed. I opted for the Kangarilla Road McLaren Vale Shiraz and enjoyed it very much with my lamb. This restaurant has a small, closed room that looks a bit like the "Vintages" section of the LCBO and they take their wines very seriously. Wifey's white was served perfectly chilled, and my red came at ideal cellar temperature. So many so-called high end restaurants get this wrong and serve the reds at room temperature. If you happen to order a bottle of wine here, it is not left at your table. Rather, it is kept hidden away somewhere and is presented only when someone needs to be offered a refill.

They are known for their selection of fine wines and you have the option of getting a reasonably priced bottle or you can drop around $9000 on a 1959 Chateau Mouton Rothschild...