L’Abattoir has successfully cinched its place in my heart for favorite restaurant. Honestly, I’ve never thought I would name one as my favorite, but L’Abattoir has done just that.
I made Fannypack come with me for their $38 Dine Out Vancouver menu. In my opinion this was one of the better bang-for-your-buck restaurants as an entree easily runs you $30 here, and now you get a full meal for a mere $8 more. Food quality should also be dependable, even during Dine Out, but mind you I’ve only been here once, so I guess we’re about to find out!
Once again Fannypack allowed me first choice on food. I had my eye on the octopus here ever since Awkward Diner told me how amazing it was. So I picked the Roast octopus and fennel salad for my appetizer. It was accompanied by slices of green olives and smoked pepper squid ink sauce. Presentation was beautiful.
Even more beautiful??? The taste. My tastebuds were once again amazed. The octopus was extremely tender and meaty (nothing like the octopus served at sushi restaurants…tough and chewy!!). You could slice them with a butter knife (which was what I had) and was soft yet retaining some chew. The sucker parts were also roasted to a slight crunch. It was marinated perfectly.
I’m also a fan of fennel. They seem to be just lightly tossed with seasoning so they were mild, which was perfect as they didn’t take away from the awesomeness of the octopus. This was my favorite dish of the night.
Since I picked the octopus, Fannypack was left to get the Homemade duck pate. Served on top of sourdough and topped with vegetable pickles and mustard, the tartness easily cut through the richness of the pate. The ducky “aroma” wasn’t very prominent though, and if we didn’t know it was duck it would’ve been hard to tell. Some might not like that, Fannypack did though as she wouldn’t have been a fan of too much “duckiness”.
Oh, and since she had originally wanted the octopus too, I made her eat some of mine 😉
Finally I was able to get Fannypack to make the first choice for entrees. She picked the Veal picatta with saffron risotto and mushrooms a la greque. She commented that the sauce was a bit sour. However that seems to have subsided as she dig into her meal. A Google search later reveals that “a la greque/grecque” means cooked in vinegar or lemon juice. There you go.
The veal was a bit tough to cut, but it wasn’t to eat. The risotto was creamy almost like creamed corn.
Fannypack thinks she got dibs but actually the Slow cooked loin of pork was my first choice! All because of the spatzle with gruyere cheese. I’ve loved spatzle ever since my visit to Old Bavarian Haus. To my delight the dish was served with a modest piece of crispy pork rind!
L’Abattoir seems to do pork loin very well and this was no exception. The thick cut of meat was very most and tender. My piece came quite fatty though which may explain why. I gobbled it up though, along with the charred brussel sprouts. The spatzle was cheesy and chewy. Yum yum!
Lastly for dessert I also made Fannypack choose first as I was okay with any of the choices. Plus I was quite certain of what she was going to pick. And I was right!
She went for the Red wine and Vanilla Poached Pears. It came with little cubes of cardamom spiced cake and a big dollop of cream cheese mousse.
We both thought there was too much crunch to the pears so they didn’t seem so much “poached” as they were “soaked-in”. I also thought the cake cubes were a tad dry. The cream cheese mousse was great though.
I got the Sticky Toffee Pudding with Honey and Ginger ice cream as my dessert. It was sweet and gooey and moist as expected, but the best part was the ginger ice cream. It was sweetened just right and really cuts through the toffee pudding.
In the end I would say that dessert is not L’Abattoir’s best department, but then, they are called “The Butcher Shop” so it’s meat that they do best, and they for sure do.
Also, there’s a common notion that we should have a little less expectation when it comes to Dine Out Vancouver times, but that was not the case here. The portions were ‘supposedly’ a bit smaller than during normal times, but we found the portion sizes just right. The quality of the food was also as good as the first time I was at L’Abattoir. Service was also excellent. Smiles all around and attentive. And, unlike our Dine Out experience at The Observatory, we were not rushed to get out…we were even brought a full bottle of water with our bill!
I would definitely recommend this place whether it’s special dine out times or not. Hopefully you were able to score a reservation here though during DOVF!