December 14, 2010

Thanksgiving Dinner @ Globe Bistro

I was in search of a hearty, elaborate Thanksgiving meal. After all, the holiday is a time to feast. But upon considering my options, Globe Bistro’s $35 prix fixe menu intrigued me. Despite the narrow dining room, the elevated ceilings give a great sense of spaciousness.  I read that the restaurant was a former bowling alley, and the distinctive wooden flooring still remains. It's an interesting touch that adds charm to the otherwise modern and upscale décor.
The place has a sort of haunted beauty that's strangely entrancing.
Before entering the main dining area, I stroll past the open kitchen and catch a glimpse of the magic inside it. Already, I am excited for what is to come, as everything smells and looks wonderful.
Soon after getting seated, our waiter promptly presents the amuse-bouche for the evening. Unfortunately, I was too hungry to remember the server's description of what it is. Regardless of what it is, the thick and creamy pâté-like topping is delicious, but hardly enough to satisfy my appetite. Nevertheless, it is a great start to the meal and leaves me desiring more.
For my appetizer, I opt for the local cellar vegetable salad. Local 100 Mile greens is tossed with squash chips, toasted walnuts, Lankaaster cheese and Niagara canola oil. Globe Bistro’s faithfulness to local, high-quality ingredients is admirable, and the efforts definitely pay off—  freshness is evident in every element that compose this salad. The crunchy walnuts and crispy squash combine to achieve just the perfect texture. The salad, on the whole, is light and tasty, albeit perhaps too small.
But in the battle of the appetizers, the real winner is the thai pumpkin purée. The thick, creamy soup has an earthy quality that makes me just want to slurp the whole thing down. The flavour is a rich blend of sweet and savoury goodness, accented with a dollop of ginger scallion cream and chili roasted seeds. My salad was good, but I wish I got this instead.

The star of the night—Blue Haven Farms Heritage Turkey—arrives amidst great expectations. The dressings include sage and pearl barley risotto, red fife currant stuffing, green beans and last but not least, smoked bacon gravy. The gravy is appropriately light enough not to overwhelm the turkey, but adds a great flavor to the incredibly juicy and tender meat. I really wanted to try turkey with cranberry sauce, but the currant stuffing is a competent substitute that fills the void. Sweet, dense, and delightfully chewy, it is the perfect counterpart to the savoury gravy. In place of the traditional mashed potato, we have the barley risotto, which conveniently soaks up the all the delicious sauce.
Since everything was so small in portion, we asked for more bread. Unfortunately, the second time around, we didn't get the butternut squash dip that goes with it.
Dessert presents me with a dilemma. Both the apple and cranberry crumble and the local “Pumpkin Pie” tart sound deliciously enticing. In the spirit of Thanksgiving, I go with the pumpkin tart, and I am glad that I did. The tart, presented in a simple and straightforward manner, is well executed. The pumpkin flavour is more intense than the average bakery tart and leaves a pleasant, lingering aftertaste.
The apple and cranberry crumble is decent, but not as good as the tart. I've had better crumbles before. But all in all, I was extremely impressed with Globe. I think I'll definitely be returning for winterlicious or another holiday meal!
Globe Bistro on Urbanspoon



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