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Thursday, April 5, 2012

BLACK TREE - BURLINGTON, ONTARIO

Black Tree – Burlington, Ontario
Eating with Andrew (restaurant owner), Jennifer (wife of restaurant owner and picky eater), and Matthew (chef)

To preface this negative blog I would like to say that this was my first time going to this restaurant.  Matthew had been a few times previous and, while he agrees that the experience was awful, he assures me that if we go again it will not be.
To begin there was wine service.  We ordered  wine, Cain Concept, (year unknown dure to poor note taking) $140.  The server decanted the wine before offering someone to test it and then  Andy had to ask for the proper wine presentation to actually happen.  The server didn't wait for confirmation before pouring (yes, now I am just being super picky)
             Bread was offered with foie gras butter, like a little orgasm in my mouth. We were offered an amuse bouche of beef heart and beet for valentines week; it was a great idea but an execution failure.  It tasted like nothing. 
We ordered everything to share between the four of us:
First course
Octopus ($20)
Lamb Carpaccio ($20)
Duck Tastes ($18)
Arctic Char ($18)

Second course
Foie Gras with peanuts pineapple passion fruit and puff pastry (mine without peanuts) ($48)
Paired Sauternes with the foie gras ($14/gls)

Third Course
The Game: was red deer with braised beef tongue ($44)
The Fish: was scallop and black cod ($38)
Bass and Cheek ($40)
Hen and Sweetbreads ($38)

The first course octopus was tender and tasty, though I'm not a fan of foam as a garnish. The lamb carpaccio was beautiful but there was a lack of flavour.  It was described at the table as though the kitchen put away all the salt and vinegars challenged themselves to make dinner without any of the flavours to see if people would notice.  Well, we noticed.

The foie gras, which is difficult to do poorly, was similar to the previous course.  It had no flavour, no salt, no anything of note. Again, it was a very beautiful dish but as far as taste is concerned, he could have served us water and we wouldn’t have known the difference.

Our next wine selection was the Camus Zinfandel 2008, $98, which was far more delicious than our first choice.  Also, when I took a washroom break, I have to say that they very creatively made the washroom experience worth talking about.  You will have to see it to understand, but certainly very cool.
            The palette cleanser was tamarind coconut; when Matt tried to take it back like a shooter, the cleanser remained intact in its vessel.  Epic fail by Matthew, laughing ensued and lightened up the experience.
             I am not going to go into detail about our final course, except to say that it didn’t taste like anything.  Where was the salt that day?  I don’t know.  This dinner was shockingly average for what we paid.

Dessert
Port Taylor 20yr Tawny (12$)
Cheese (Complimentary)
Jen and Matt shared Chocolate Tofu (Complimentary)

Final Bill: $650.88
Tip: 20%
Overall Grade: 10%
Likeliness to return: 90% (Because Matt feels it necessary to prove that this awful meal was a one-time thing)