Tags: Centretown · Fusion · Italian · Patio · Pub

Parliament Pub
Foods from Parliament Pub


2008 Feb 20
Just in time for Valentines Day, "The Man" took me out for nice evening at the NAC. Because it was sooo cold, we planned to eat somewheres closeby.

Our first choice was D'Arcy McGees right across the street on the corner of Sparks Street and Elgin. Unfortunatly, although we arrived fairly early the place was packed. We were sure if we stayed we never would have gotten seated, and would have spent the evening at the bar drinking instead of eating (hmmmm...)

So with not really a plan in mind we headed off west along Sparks Street. We ended up at the Parliament Pub.

The Parliament Pub (suitably named) sits across from Parliament Hill in the old Birks Building. The pub is sort of built as a mezzanine above the floor of the once former jewelry store. And because of the history of the building, you end up sitting beneath one of the most magnificent plastered ceilings in country. Talk about craftmanship, I could of sat there looking up for hours.

When we arrived it wasn't too busy. And the pleasant enough waitress said we could sit anywhere. We chose a table in the back. We noticed there were about 6 other tables of people relaxing and chatting while they ate and drank. It seemed ok enough, so we decided to stay.

The room is kind of fun, there is a lot of photos and government memorabilia, including a series of characticatures of members of parliament. The menu was a bit of a hoot too, with several dishes named after the most prominent politicians.

The waitress brought us our drink order (beer for him and wine for me) and told us that the appetizers were half-price. The wine list although small (3 or 4 of each) is interesting because everything they have is available by the glass, 1/2 litre or bottle.

We decided on the Ken Dryden Pizza, listed as Chicken Pesto. And we each ordered a side salad. The salads came first, they were very basic, mixed greens, a tomatoe wedge and a good dressing. Like the previous poster kmennie I too was very pleased with the salad, the veggies were young and fresh and the dressing yummy.

The pizza although sold as a single, is probably more on line with a medium size. It featured chicken, asparagus, pesto and cheese on a thin crust. The toppings were great... the crust I'm still not sure about. For some reason I couldn't get Pillsbury dough out of my head... it tasted ok, but the whole thing reminded me of it (sort of how the Pampered Chef Partys make pizza dough out of Pillsbury Crescent Rolls). It was just off-putting though, not bad. We finished the whole thing.

All-in-all it was a positive experience. By the time we left there were probably 10 tables (30 - 35 people) and the one waitress. A little busy (I don't think they expected all this NAC traffic) but she did ok by us.

I am looking forward to checking out this location again, maybe in the summertime. I understand they have a nice assortment of lunch salads & sandwiches.

2007 May 3
I keep expecting a why'd-I-bother, it's-for-tourists experience here, but, no, not really.

Service can be a little dodgy sometimes -- easy to go suddenly invisible for periods on the patio -- but it's generally friendly, and that's my biggest complaint. No, wait. The beer selection is very small for a pub, too.

That beer fuss aside, this is a lunch destination for me. I'm more and more of a fan of the food. The salads keep coming out with very fresh ingredients. It's not cheap, but also not wildly overpriced; pretty spot on for what it is, really.

Pictured: artichoke heart salad ($9 or $10), garlic bread with cheese (really good, c. $5), and, barely visible, a chicken wrap with a Caesar ($? and dissatisfaction with the mayo but high marks for the lettuce in the salad; noted: non-Kraft cheese).

The bruschetta is recommended -- it's been a while since I had it so I'm not even sure why, exactly, but I do remember nice fresh plum tomatoes and general goodness; the quality of the food is a real surprise from a place that could get by on good real estate alone. The patio's great.