Summerlicious 2011, Part 3: North 44

I’ve always wanted to go to Mark McEwan’s North 44. When my sister suggested we go for Summerlicious, I jumped at the chance and made a Saturday night reservation.

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The menu had few choices for each course, but they all sounded really good. For the appetizer, was torn between the steak tartare and the minted sweet pea ravioli. Once I decided, however, to have the steak for my entree, I chose the ravioli to start. For dessert, I chose the banana strudel because it sounded like heaven on a plate.

For drinks, they had a special Summerlicious drink menu (in addition to their regular extensive cocktail and wine lists). I decided to start off with a sparkling wine cocktail, which was made with sparkling white wine and my choice of liqueur (almond, pomegranate and two others – I chose pomegranate and it was divine). I chose a glass of pot noir to enjoy with my meal. I was very impressed with the prices of the drinks…it is very rare to find a $7 or $8 6 oz. glass of wine at an upscale restaurant, and I appreciated not being ripped off.

The ravioli appetizer was delicious. Topped with fried sage leaves, it was nutty and sweet, and the crushed pecans were a nice twist. My steak was done perfectly, and the as asparagus was tender-crisp. And dessert. Oh, wow. It was probably the best dessert I’ve had! It was not overly sweet, and the sponge toffee was a nice addition. Chocolate, banana, sponge toffee…all things I love!

The service was very good. We were not looked down on because we were there for Summerlicious, and our server was very attentive. The timing of the courses was perfect; we were in and out in less than 2 hours, but never felt rushed. I was surprised that the restaurant was not full when we got there. We had an 8pm reservation, and I would have thought that was the busiest time, but it remained 1/3-1/2 empty.

I will definitely go back to North 44 for special occasions…they obviously know how to do Simmerlicious right, and have gained a new customer.

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