August 7, 2010

The Bauer Kitchen

I'm determined to try all the restaurants in the Charcoal Group of Restaurants. After my wonderful experience at Wildcraft, I had high hopes for the Bauer Kitchen. This place used to be a felt factory and has a lot of industrial charm. Doesn't the exterior look nice?
Concrete floors, exposed brick walls, industrial steel and hardwood tables combine strangely into a comfortable setting for a lovely meal. The huge windows allow lots of natural sunlight to pour into the dining environment, and the custom lighting adds much charm to the decor.
I really like the hardwood tables!
Now onto the food. First, we started off with some bread from their in-house bakery, the Bauer Bakery. This multigrain bread was delicious and had great texture. Butter was the perfect companion to the bread, and I couldn't help finishing most of it!
BAUER BUTCHER BURGER: Heidelburg double-smoked bacon, aged cheddar, mustard scallion mayonnaise and grilled onion on a multigrain bun, served with sweet potato fries. I had my mind set on ordering this even before I arrived and because, really, who can resist a name like Butcher Burger? The waitress thoughtfully had the kitchen cut the burger in half because I was sharing this with my mom. The patty was juicy and flavourful, complemented perfectly by the smoky bacon and onions. Even my mom, who highly disapproves of ordering burgers at a restaurant (because she feels that it's "fast food"), couldn't resist it.The portion was also huge, and I was stuffed from just eating half of one. The waitress also generously gave us double portions of sweet potato fries (another favourite) when she split the plate for us.These people really know how to earn their tip.
Next up is the SHORT RIB GNOCCHI: braised short rib, roasted mushrooms, cherry tomatoes,
potato gnocchi, wilted baby spinach and veal jus. I've been wanting to try gnocchi (Italian potato dumplings) for awhile, and I was delighted to be finally able to. Well, it turns out that I'm not a fan of gnocchi, as I find the texture too mushy. Perhaps I should try it at a more authentic Italian place? Anyhow, the gnocchi was less than impressive, but everything else was SO DAMN GOOD! The veal jus was absolutely scrumptious and complemented everything on the plate- tomatoes, spinach, mushrooms. I wanted to dip my burger and the leftover piece of bread into this! You may think this doesn't look too appetizing- well, think again! If only they'll replace the gnocchi with another type of pasta... but I think I am willing to get this again just for the delicious sauce and toppings.
My mom and I were stuffed from the burger, so I got to pack most of the pasta and some sweet potato fries home. Yummmmm, I'm already looking forward to dinner!
All in all, I had a great experience and I wouldn't hesitate to come back again. My dilemma is whether I should order the same items again or venture into something new...
The Bauer Kitchen on UrbanspoonThe Bauer Kitchen on Restaurantica



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