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Batifole Review (long)

Jenna | Feb 28, 2005 11:03 AM

My SO and I went to Batifole on Sat evening for a quiet dinner for two.

We arrived exactly at our reservation time and were seated within a few mins of our arrival. We decided that we would begin the evening with a drink while we perused the wine and food menus. I had a Kir Cassis – always very yummy, and my SO had a scotch on the rocks – not my thing but he enjoys it.

We decided on food rather quickly but take much longer to sift through the wine list. We would have appreciated some direction but we were unable to get the attention of one of the two servers working that night. We settle on a ‘96 Madoc.

I ordered the sautéed scampi in a lobster sauce to start followed by the duck confit served with haricot baked beans, pork breast and lamb sausage. My SO orders the baked clams and mussles with parsley butter and the evening’s main special Ontario lamb chops with a red pepper demi-glaze and eggplant ratatouille. For sides we order the double baked potato with goat cheese and the green salad.

MY SO was rather hungry so was happy when a lovely ‘bucket’ of fresh warm baguette sliced arrived at our table. The bread itself was not amazing, but a great offering because it was so fresh and warm.

Unfortunately, our starters weren’t as great at the warm baguette. MY SO said his clams and mussles were ok, but not as fresh as he would like. My scampi was good, but the promised lobster sauce was missing the all-important flavour of lobster.

We finished our starters and wait approx. 15 mins before our plates were taken away. It is a small restaurant, but it was a Sat evening, the placed was packed, and from what we could tell there were only two servers working. This means that tables don’t really get the attention they should. The staff knows this is the case and apologize for it three times throughout the evening. That’s fine. Say sorry for sure. But really, try not to let it happen again.

The mains take longer to arrive then they probably should, but one of the servers provides us with some extra bread and ensures us the plates will be along soon.

When the mains do arrive, they are PIPING HOT! When I say hot, I mean HOT. Not complaining at all. Just amazed at how hot they really were. I actually have to wait almost 10 mins before I can enjoy the haricot baked beans under the plethora of assorted meats. My SO’s is the same, but he’s so hungry he doesn’t want to wait and ends up burning his tongue. The sides arrive at the same time as the mains. Although we’ve ordered the potato and salad we get the potato and country roasted veg.

We try to get one of the server’s attention, but again, MIA. Really, please, even in a small place, on a Sat. night, you need more than two servers.

We give up on trying to make the switch on the side and dig into our mains. Mine is a very generous portion. The duck leg is tasty, but not crispy. The pork breast is delicious and the lamb sausage has a nice little punch of spice.

My SO devours his two lamb chops before I have even been ale to taste my beans. He said his mean was tasty but he could have eaten three lamb chops easily. But for $15, what do you expect is my questions.

We finish our mains and wait, and wait, and wait, for our plates to be cleared. When the server finally comes to take them away, she again apologizes for “neglecting us”. We order two cafe au laits and ask to see the dessert menu.

We decide to share the cream brulee. It’s ok. Great consistency, but not very flavourful and the sugar brulee is far too thin. We eat half of it between the two of us.

With tax and tip the meal is $180. Was it good? Yes. Amazing? No. Will we go back? Maybe. All and all for almost $200 it was a little under-whelming. I think with a little more service, up the anti a little on the apps and the desserts and it may be great. I’ll have to wait and see.

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