Dinner at Brava Bistro; Treats from Manuel Latruwe

J and I were on our once-in-a-blue-moon shopping trip this past Friday, and instead of sticking to the tradition of having sushi for dinner, we decided to try something else.  Since we were going to Chinook again, I thought maybe it was time to hit one of my wishlist restaurants along 17th Ave.  After carefully studying menus online, I decided on Brava b/c a) lobster poutine b) J likes her steak c) reasonable prices and d) reservations can be easily made on opentable! We got to the restaurant at 5:10pm and was one of the first few tables there.  We were offered a seat right next to the window where it was comfortable and we did a bit of people watching along 17th Ave, lol.

Here’s what we ordered tonight:

BB - Complimentary Bread

Complimentary Bread

Served with soft butter.  Not sure if this was baked in house but it was soft and flavorful.

BB - Lobster Poutine

Lobster Poutine – $16

pomme frites, lobster, shellfish butter sauce, mascarpone cheese

Since this dish gets so many rave reviews here, I decided that I had to try it… and it did not disappoint.  The fries are very crispy and seasoned well – J said that they were very potato-y… I guess that’s good…? Haha.  The lobster chunks were succulent and the mascarpone cheese was creamy enough without being too heavy, but what brought everything together was the butter sauce.  It was buttery and very flavorful, and just the right amount so not the entire plate was drowned in it (like you would sometimes get with gravy on regular poutine).  Once all the fries were gone there was just that little bit of sauce left – enough to dip some bread in.

BB - Arugula Salad

Arugula Salad – $14

toasted bread crumbs, basil, parmigiano reggiano cheese, lemon vinaigrette

J ordered this but it was large enough for us to share.  The vinaigrette was light and it was just barely there to give it a bit of a refreshing taste, and I didn’t find the arugula in this dish spicy or bitter at all.

BB - Short Rib

Spring Creek Ranch Short Rib – $29

red wine braised, broccoflower, aged cheddar mac & cheese, cabernet jus

This was my main.  I never used to order short rib but my friend K orders it quite a bit when we dine out so I got influenced by her.  The short rib here was very, very tender.  I gently pressed against it with my fork and the meat just started breaking apart.  The cabernet jus was also very well done – I find that sometimes when I try short rib (or even steak) the sauce can be a bit salty – totally not the case here.  The sides – mac and cheese was simple and clean tasting while the broccoflower was simply steamed and helped cut out the heaviness of the meat.

BB - Angus Striploin

Feature: Angus Striploin – $30

As I mentioned, J loves her steak.  She will almost always order steak when we dine out and since they had an angus feature, she was ready to try it! I had a bit to try and it was tender and juicy, but nothing like the angus ones that hubby buys from the angus farm in Innisfail.  Anyways, J really liked her main here and had no trouble finishing it.

Service was decent; our server was there when needed but she did not make conversation with us at all.  Not sure if she was just shy or…? Prices are pretty much on par with other restaurants of the same caliber and we really enjoyed our food here tonight.  I would definitely come back again – especially for the lobster poutine!

We skipped dessert tonight b/c we were modestly full and well, we made a visit to Manuel Latruwe prior to dinner.  I picked up the following two items to try:

ML - Lemon Tart

Lemon Tart – $6.50

I have always love lemon in my dessert so of course I had to try the lemon tart here.  At $6.50, it was really expensive for the tiny portion but it was delicately crafted and tasted absolutely divine.  I wish there was more lemon curd in it so I can taste more!

ML - Samba

Samba – $7.50

almond-chocolate cake, covered in milk and dark chocolate mousse

I bought this mainly because of the macarons on the side, but also b/c I like almond flavored things as well.  I shared this with hubby and good thing I did, b/c it was very rich.   The macarons were light, airy and crispy – just perfect.  The cake inside was light and creamy… I’m so glad I will not come here often b/c if I were to, I would get broke very fast and will become very fat.  However, I have a long list of items I wish to try here – particular their praline and pistachio ice creams.

Brava Bistro on Urbanspoon Manuel Latruwe Belgian Patisserie & Bread Shop on Urbanspoon

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