Grinder MontrealPosted By Alex Chinien Feb 02 2013 · 0 comments · Dining Out, Griffintown
We recently stopped by for a quick bite at Grinder Montreal on Notre Dame Street in Griffintown. Grinder Viandes et Vins is the newest Griffintown restaurant placing its bets on the ballooning condo high rises building up in the area. We had heard some initial positive talk about the restaurant but went in with managed expectations. Grinder Montreal has a sister restaurant Hachoir which did not impress us on our last visit.
The decor at Grinder was obviously a main focus. Long dark polished wood, big glass walls and oversized medical style lamps decorate the dining space. As we were seated, we couldn’t help but get a disingenuous feeling about. As if the restaurant was trying too hard to be “hip” and cater to the young professional crowd they so desire. We ordered a cocktail and a few beers and tried to keep an open mind.
The Beef Tataki was served with aragula mousse, manchego cheese shavings, laurel and juniper oils, pickled carrots. Sounds great right? Wrong. Unfortunately the Beef Tataki was one of the biggest disappointments of the night. The flavours did not come across at all and texture was chewy and stringy, forcing us to pull out chewed up pieces of meat.
We also had an order of popcorn shrimp with spicy mayo that went totally awry. Generally we think of popcorn shrimp as a pretty safe bet. But this shrimp was served soft and room temperature, not crispy at all. We actually didn’t even finish the dish.
Next we ordered three tartares, the beef tartare served fried capers, gherkins and parmigiano Reggiano, the bison tartare with g puree with port, enoki mushroom, caramelized shallots and the salmon tartare with avocado puree, miso, cilantro, green Tabasco, lime juice.
While the tartares were not as disappointing as the beef tataki, they fell flat into the trap that most raw menus do. They were under seasoned and uninteresting – not memorable at all. The best of the three was probably the bison tartare with the caramelized shallots as it had a play with sweetness and savory mushrooms.
Overall, we were pretty unsatisfied with our meal at Grinder Montreal – it really feels like they tried a little too hard with the decor and not hard enough elevating the menu.
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