Monday, February 20, 2012

DB Restaurant Review

I work in a bar. I see a lot of people drink. I see a lot of the same people drink A LOT. I see a lot of the same people drink A LOT on a very regular basis. My thought is how do people afford to drink like this all of the time and where is the rationale for spending that much money on booze on a day-to-day basis? Or even a week-to-week basis? I guess I am a bit biased being the kind of person who never drinks "too much" or really ever having more than 2 drinks in a night. I'm boring that way. But my good friend Cherie and I started talking about this a few days ago and we agreed that yeah, it's nice to be able to cut loose every once in a while, but we have a common desire to save the money and buy something else that's indulgent and intoxicating, but won't leave you with a killer hangover.

Our indulgence? Food of course!!! Cherie and I have a common love for food. The funny thing about food though is that unless you are incredibly successful and have a popular show on the Food Network, working in the food industry isn't the most profitable. So we made plans to save all of our pennies and have dinner out on the town without worrying about cost or calories. I have a really hard time going to a restaurant and ordering what I really want because most of the time I can't rationalize spending $30 on an entree that I can make at home for about 6 bucks. But not this night. Nope.

We decided on Daniel Brenan Brickhouse which is a fairly new spot here in Charlottetown. The entire building was renovated last year and re-opened with a new name and new menu. I was invited out to dinner there in November as a gift from Rachelle Wood (the lovely lady I volunteer with) and the three of us ordered and shared a whole bunch of appys such as Sprouted Quinoa Vegetable Rolls, Chicken Spring Rolls, Hand Rolled Flatbread and Gathered Greens with Beets. It was delicious. Oh, and how could I forget the Flourless Chocolate Torte w/Sour Cream? That was to die for! Cherie had never been yet and our other friend Tina had only ever been there for drinks, so when I threw out the suggestion they jumped at the chance to try the restaurant out.

Lucky us! The night we decided to try the place out was the night they were using the brand new menu! I was very impressed with the new menu (apart from losing the quinoa rolls which were yummy) because they make it a bit smaller, much more simplistic for those who may not know what some of the most unfamiliar foods on the menu were and much more affordable for those who don't want to spend a huge amount on a meal. Now I wish that I could explain what we all ordered but the new menu isn't on their website yet so I don't know the names of what we ordered. Bummer! For appetizers, myself and Tina both got the Gathered Greens salad (I love the pumpkin brittle that is sprinkled on top) while Cherie went for a cup of the soup of the day which was a "vegan" french onion. I put vegan in quotations because there was cheese sprinkled on the soup and both cheese and butter were on the accompanied garlic bread. Maybe someone should explain what a vegan diet consists of.

Visually stunning food! 
For entrees, Tina got the DB Burger which was an elaborate beef burger and Cherie went for a pork burger. I jumped at the chance to get their homemade veggie burger on foccacia  and I loved it. It was simply dressed with just sweet onion relish, burger, bibb lettuce and a garlicky creamy spread. Amazing. The relish was sooo sweet and the garlic spread was soooo garlicky so in my mouth it was this fight between sweet and garlic and I loved every bite. The steamed veggies that I had as a side were way over-salted but they were perfectly cooked so I ate them all anyway. Pair the meal with a large glass of Sir John A's Honey Wheat Ale and we were all too stuffed to think about dessert.  Unfortunate yes, but we agreed to go back again to have just drinks and desserts to make up for the dessert deprivation.

I fully recommend Daniel Brenan Brickhouse to anyone looking for a great meal and beautiful atmosphere to have a relaxing social experience. The restaurant uses a lot of local suppliers which is an added bonus since it supports both local people and their food. Plus they give you the option of spending a lot on a meal vs. spending just slightly more than you would at any other restaurant. But the quality of the meal spoke for itself and I would gladly go again to try out more of their menu.

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