As we all know by now, I don't have a lot to do at work. This means I get to spend upwards of seven hours a day playing on the internet! Sounds amazing, right? It is. And it isn't. My eyes hurt by the end of the day, but more often then not I've found either a new recipe or a new pub. This past weekend we finally got to try out the newest member of the Mill Group Pub Company, Kildares Ale House. MGPC also owns Barley Mill, Rose & Crown and Muldoons, and to be honest, I am not a fan of any of those restaurants, so I'm a bit leery. I am also being surprised by this outing! Our conversation that afternoon revolves around what food do we have in the fridge, what of those options do we feel like cooking, and where would we go if we decided against the comforts of home.
Well, my fabulous husband to be remembers that the new pub in our neighbouring community of Silverado has opened recently and we've both been wanting to go. I'm pretty sure it opened in the beginning of February and for some reason it has taken us this long to get over there for a pint...let's not make that mistake again! This place is great!!!
From the outside it looks a big bigger than it is, and the parking lot looked sort of busy, so on a Sunday night at dinner time we expected it to be much busier than it was. Once inside we notice that it's much smaller than you would imagine, and significantly less busy than the cars would have you believe. I think we were the 8th table in the whole place and the longer we stayed the more it emptied out. But I think that made our experience even better to be honest.
We both recognized the bartender, but couldn't place where from, and once our "Flames Game Daily Special" beers were poured we say to him "you look really familiar" at nearly the exact moment he says the same thing to us! Good, we're not crazy! Turns out he was a bartender over at Windsor Rose (our very close to home and all too frequent hang out). We get to talking, catch his name, and then he regales us with his stories of being a Calgary Firefighter as his day job! That sure passes the time for us, and I hope it did for him too. We might have been one of his three tables all night.
I suppose I should get in to the reason we're here...beer. Fairly big draft selection. Luckily for me they have Canadian and Keiths on tap! That doesn't happen often! But for the more adventurous folk there's many more to chose from and also, a scotch menu that's probably 50 deep. Oddly enough M doesn't order a scotch and instead gets a tequila and later on, an amaretto (pfffttsssshhhh, we're not drinking on a work night...).
We are taking our time ordering dinner, but we decide to start with an appy and this one practically calls our name.
Garlic Truffle Frites: Shoestring fries drizzled with white truffle oil, slivered fresh garlic, cracked black pepper and Grana Padano Parmesan cheese.
This presentation is great! Piled high in a tall metal tube-thingy. Doesn't matter. Just get the fries. The huge chunks of shaved parmesan, oh the warm small chunks of garlic... ohhhh. These are awesome. I ask M what he thinks, and specifically, are they better than Palomino's Garlic Fries? I say yes, they are better, he says sort of. He's a man of few words. I manage to get out of him that the taste isn't exactly better (even though it's still awesome), but they are much more realistic for an appetizer The one from Palominos' are so huge and filling that it's a bit tricky to consider them an appy.
A beer or two later we go for the entree order and I, presumably, ask for a steak sandwich.
Black Angus Steak Sandwich: A tender 7oz Certified Black Angus sirloin is grilled to your liking then topped with sautéed mushrooms and crisp onion strings. Served on garlic pan bread.
Now that sounds delicious! (Minus the onions and mushrooms) When it comes out, I'm a little bit disappointed. The steak looks good but it's much closer to med-well (I ordered it med-rare). I have to try to forgive the kitchen because it looks like a striploin, and striploins seem to always be overcooked. I guess I'm accustomed to a sirloin being a thicker, rounder, more ball shaped cut, and this one was long and flat. Look, I'm not a butcher, I just eat a lot of steak. It still tasted great (or I was just very hungry and was determined to finish it!). Where I was lost even more though is on the fries. They were a large, thick cut fry, and princess here doesn't like thick cut fries. I actually was expecting them to be the same shoestring fries they used in the appy, just minus the good stuff. In hindsight I will ask for the shoestrings, and happily pay the difference. Hell I might just order the appetizer fries as my side dish!! I will confess to not eating any of the sauteed mushrooms, and handed those all over to M. He liked them so much that he says he will order the steak sandwich one day, and say no onions extra mushrooms. That's great news, because I loved the crispy onion strings, so I'll take his portion on my plate! Great team work there babe!!
M's dinner was the Hearty Beef & Barley Soup: A rich hearty broth of beef sirloin, carrot, onions and celery finished with pearl barley and Smokey chipotle peppers. Served with a sharp cheddar cheese stick. Maybe I just didn't see it, but I don't remember a cheese stick. Strange. Anyway, the portion size is a little small for what we would consider a large soup (but we are also spoiled by Windsor Rose's soup, because it is ginormous!). Next thing I know M is done his soup! I am assuming he liked it and I get a very generic response. I chuckle and jokingly ask for a better description than that. I get "it was good, I'd give it an 8". OK, Tam, that's the best you're gonna get on this one, so trust it.
Let me tell you a story about Kildares.
One time we went there for dinner on Sunday. It was so great we returned on Tuesday night for dinner.
The end. :)