Thursday, October 22, 2009

Da Emma
777, rue de la Commune O corner King
Montreal, Québec, H3C 1Y1
Old Montreal.
How can I possibly start a new blog and not review my all time favorite restaurant, Da Emma

Named after its talented chef, this restaurant was once a woman's prison. Don't worry there isn't any visual indication of it's history. None the less, its an interesting fact...and a little creepy :)

When you walk into this restaurant, the first thing you'll notice next to the entrance are all the celebrity photos on the wall. I found out that this is also Johnny's Depp's favorite restaurant and does not miss an opportunity to drop in when he's in town. I actually saw Brendan Fraser there last year.

The restaurant has a romantic feel but is also hip and lively - never over the top. There are patrons of all ages at Da Emma.  The decor is a mix of modern and rustic, with its sleek stainless steel bar, stone walls and big wooden beams on the ceiling.

You won't get a traditional menu. What you get is a small black board, which is brought to your table with the menu items listed. Even though I'm Italian, I wasn't familiar with some names of the dishes. Ex: I didn't know that Abbacchio was baby lamb. (Maybe that's just me, I don't know). Have the waiter explain the items to you.

There is however a conventional looking wine list. - It is extensive. The waiters are all very knowledgeable about wine and can surely recommend one that you'll enjoy.   No disappointments so far in the past 8-ish years.

Now for the food! My favorite appetizer is , by far, the thinly sliced prosciutto with buffalo mozzarella. Its so simple..its literally a ball of buffalo mozzarella cut in two with the prosciutto draped over it...That's it! No oil , no salt..You can add oil, freshly ground pepper and salt if you wish but you really don't need to. Andre loves that one too but he often orders the Rugetta salad with shavings of parmigiano reggiano. Its on the vinagery side - not a negative thing. The tomato with buffalo mozzarella is great - presentation is nice too.
OOOOH! I forgot to mention the complimentary bruschetta you get! The bread looks like traditional Tuscan bread but with more flavor. The bread is grilled , topped with tasty chopped tomato, salt, pepper and is drenched in olive oil! Lipstick gone!

The last time I went, I saw that one of their appetizers came with figs. I'm crazy about figs but I wanted them with my mozzarella and prosciutto. When I made my request the waiter gave me a smile and a look that said.."oooh , I don't know"...But he said he'd do it it was going to be a tough
He came back with my figs in one dish and my appetizer in another. He said , "Emma said , Whatever you do, no mixa da figs witha da cheese, OK?" Don't do it"!! (yes, my waiter had a thick Italian accent) I was surprised and laughed. He was so adamant about it!
Honestly, I didn't care, I was in heaven!!!! (by the way, I ate a piece of cheese with some fig and I did not spontaneously combust )

Meatballs are great- you must try.

For our main, I like to change things up whenever I go but my favs include the gnocci with meat sauce, pasta with porcini mushrooms, and the stacetti (sliced steak) on a bed of arugula salad. the heat from the meat wilts the arugula, its so great.
Andre has one of the most poupular items on the menu, the Maialino (slow roasted baby pork), I know, sounds sad but its sooooooooo good, you'll get over it. All mains, except for the pasta, are served with either pasta or veggies. Veggies again are simple, olive oil, salt and pepper. That's the key at this restaurant, you can actually taste the food!

Bianca had ordered sausage with lentils once and was not impressed although its not something I've seen on the menu often.

Dessert, the best Tiramisu EVER - sorry ma'.

No comments:

Post a Comment