I always walk by L’Abattoir in gastown and I keep saying to B that we need to try this place out for months. B, AC (guest foodie) and I finally got a chance to dine here last week during Dine Out Vancouver and I totally regret not doing it sooner. The meal was near perfect and a wonderful dining experience.
Complimentary bread: brioche with bacon bits, anchovy cheese twists, and poppyseed sesame crisps.
Very rare do I go to a french restaurant and get something other than baguette and butter. Those that know me, know that I have an on-going love affair with baguette and butter. But L’Abattoir sure knows how to be creative. The brioche with bacon is to die for. Ok, maybe I’m overselling it because of the bacon, but it really was good. And B couldn’t stop raving about the cheese twists.
Country style pork pate with toast, pickled vegetables and apricot sauce
I’m normally not a big fan of pork, especially pork pate, but this was really good. It kind of looks like canned ham from the afar. The pickled vegetables were interesting, with the perfect amount of acidity to go with the pork. I liked how the ratio between meat and bread was 1:1.
Poached egg with potato gnocchi, leeks, mushrooms, pecorino sabayon
This was B’s appetizer, she’s very particular of leeks and only likes them if the taste doesn’t overpower the other ingredients. She really enjoyed it and I really liked the deep fried leeks, so yummy.
Warm steelhead and fried potato salad with smoked pork fat, dill, horseradish
This was AC’s appy, I forgot to try it (I’m not really a salad kind of girl), but he said it was really good. He was pretty impressed with the fish.
Duck breast and leg meat sausage, buttered green cabbage, pan fried German noodles
Alright, I really love duck, and especially duck breast. I didn’t expect the duck to be wrapped with sausage but this was really really tasty. I hope L’abbatoir adds this onto their regular menu because I need more of this duck sausage. The only complaint I have is the german noodles, they reminded me of chinese hand-cut noodles. It tasted too bland and starchy. I would have prefered just duck and cabbage. Or maybe just duck, no wait, lots more duck—four pieces of duck was not enough.
Earl Grey pot de creme with Lemon shortbread, whipped milk
To sum this dessert up, ultimate foodgasm in my mouth. Everyone knows I love tea, especially earl grey tea, and this one really hit the spot. They also serve jjbean coffee, so I had to get myself a nice espresso macchiato to go with it. Perfection. I literally licked the bowl clean.
Wine Pairing: Tantalus Riesling 2010
If you ask me what my favourite type of wine is, it’s definitely Riesling. I usually prefer German Riesling over any kind, but this was one of the suggested wines, and I was very impressed. It had a near perfect balance of sweetness and acidity, and went very well with all the dishes I had. B had to drive so my other friend and I finished the bottle, it was for the best anyway. ;)
The Final Verdict: L’Abbatoir is a total gem in gastown (or at least I think so). Delicious and creatively crafted food. Perfect ambience. Beautiful interior. And unlike the majority of restaurants in Vancouver, they actually have a sommelier. A must try in Vancouver. Definitely make reservations because they seem to be very busy all the time, and who can blame them?
Oh and in case you’re wondering what “l’abattoir” means in french, it’s “slaughter-house”. The name is clever and fits perfectly for their location, previously gastown’s meat-packing district, right by the infamous Blood Alley.
Happy Eating! -J