The bf and I wanted to take advantage of the nice day (despite the windiness) on Saturday by having our dinner out on one of the many Stephen Ave.’s restaurants’ patio. We really wanted to eat at TRIB for their Celebration du Canard (Duck Festival) – a little morbid since we spent the whole day at Eau Claire with the ducks and geese, lol. But they were closed for a private function. Next, we tried to eat at Home Tasting Room. I had reserved a table out on the patio, but when we showed up the hostess sat us inside because “they were too busy tonight to open the patio”. I don’t understand that sentiment at all. Why wouldn’t you open the patio on such a nice day? Just sit less people inside? Oh well, I guess we’ll have to try Home another time. We sat down, decided it really wasn’t what we wanted, and left to wander around Stephen Ave. some more.
We finally decided on Murrieta’s since they have a really neat patio on the second floor that overlooks Stephen Avenue. The only downside to sitting up there was the height of the building casted a really large shadow over the patio. We didn’t get any sun, and it was getting windier as the meal went on. I glanced several times over to Home’s patio, the sun basking on the lack of tables (sad face).
We weren’t overly hungry, so we just decided to get the Antipasto Platter to share. Good thing too, since we couldn’t even finish that – we had to get some packed up to go. The platter was $49.21 (they have some odd prices on their menu…I wonder why…), it was quite big, and I would say well worth the money – since you’re paying for the atmosphere as well.
According to their website, it was supposed to come with Ahi Tuni Tartare, Featured Oysters & Calamari Salad. Ours didn’t come with any of that…hmmm…I can’t recall if our actual menu on Saturday said this…probably not, the menu online probably hasn’t been updated.
Anyways, back to the food! We started off with some complimentary bread:
The bread was good, but cold. I like it better when restaurants serve warm bread (for instance, Fiore’s), it tastes so much better, and it is much easier to spread the butter around. Also, the crust of this particular bread was very hard and chewy.
Here are the foods that came with our particular platter:
There was Wild Boar Pâté, I actually really liked this and I didn’t think I would. The pâté had huge chunks of nuts in it and it was very creamy and flavourful. Behind it was some pretty basic charcuterie meats – salami I think…
The smoked salmon was deeee-licious, but I found the accompanying Parmigiano-Reggiano to be way to salty. I think another type of cheese would have been better for the platter, the platter itself was already very salty (I understand that it’s supposed to be, with all the cured meats and smoked fish and all), and a creamy cheese or something would’ve balanced the dish more IMO.
The Candied Salmon was my favoriate item on the plate. It had a nice balance of savory and sweet, and the texture had all the chewy wonderful-ness of jerky. I could snack on a bowl of this all day, everyday, for the rest of my life.
Next up, Smoked Duck Prosciutto. This had a wonderful smoked flavour, and the thin layer of fat on top added just the right amount of richness.
That’s it for this platter – it did also come with a light spring salad (the only thing on the plate to cut the salt) and crostini, but that’s not very interesting. And, what’s the etiquette of getting more crostini? Do you ask for more, or should the waiter to know to bring you more when all your costini are gone, but you still have a big plate of meat left? Do you expect to get the extra for free? Or are you expected to pay for them?
MURRIETA’S BAR & GRILL
200, 808 – 1 Street Southwest
Calgary, AB T2P 1M9