Still a few bumps which I guess is fair enough since they haven't even officially opened yet. First the not so good: The menu does not disclose when gastriques are used (and that is often according to the chef) which was a problem for one of my DCs as both the spot prawns and the duck she ordered had unexpectedly sweet sauces. Also the spot prawns were not super fresh and at $12 for three they should be. But to me the biggest faux pas was that the menu promised fiddleheads with the duck and instead subbed green beans (!) with no warning. The server mentioned that the listed arctic char dish would be sockeye as they had that in fresh but stated clearly that there were no other changes. Oops. The main reason my DC ordered the duck was for the ferns! None of the other appetizers really jumped out and since Curtis Luk is known for desserts, two of us decided to save room for those. The menu doesn't quite seem to know what it wants to be.
My other DC had flat iron steak which he said was fine but not awesome. It came with potato fondant that was way oversalted (I tried it and it was too salty even for me, and I love salt).
Now for the good stuff: My gnocchi was excellent if a tad small for $16, lovely pea shoots peas and beautifully tender little pillows of pasta that had slightly caramelized exteriors. The desserts were also very good -- we had a bread pudding, a lemon pot de creme and the daily special which had two types of macaron, cookies and mini Pavlovas. I'm not a big dessert person but I'd go back for them.
To make up for the sauce/veg issues, they comped the duck and the bread pudding which was a nice thing to do. The room is much more inviting than when it was refuel though the layout is identical. We interacted with four staff members (Trevor Bird, Curtis, our server and the other male owner). Apart from a few stumbles mispronouncing granita and macaron, not knowing what was in some of the dishes, what coffee they were serving -- Caffe del Arte for the americanos -- very nice and enthusiastic. The meal took a long time, more than 2 hours. To everyone's credit, our comments were welcomed and received in the spirit they were given.
Overall, I'd go back as none of the problems affected me directly, but I'll wait a while as I usually do when a place first opens. I'm thinking they may have priced themselves a bit high for the neighbourhood and could run into some of the same problems refuel did but I hope not.