Continuing my French bistro craze and extending from Tableau Bar Bistro, I decided to sample Boneta. This chic restaurant is nooked inside Blood Alley next to L’Abattoir, Neighbour, Apres Midi Tea House and Coffeebar.
Tables line the front with booth seats running along the left side and a bar in the back. Abstract artwork fill the ceiling and a semi-open kitchen concept. The smell of food is intoxicating as it fills the high ceiling. I see the table next to me order Bread and the miniature size loaf is cleverly presented and I’m intrigued… Do I want to order bread as a side? I’m used to having complimentary carbohydrates…
My friend is late upon arriving at the old location. So I’ve changed my mind. I will have a glass of vino while I wait.
Château Gaudrelle Sec Tendre Vouvray 2009. Initially I wanted the Vincent Raimbault Bel Air Sec Vouvray 09 (glorious Chenin. Electric quince, dry honey and crackled silk) but the buyer brought back the Chateau instead. The Chateau has sweeter notes and not as dry but still deliciously seductive with honeyed pear character, some stony minerality, banana peel and earthy tones.
Boneta’s menu is frixe prix – Table d’Hote Dinner for 3 Fine Courses at $45 a head. Of course all items are also available A La Carte. Some items require additional dollars and same with the sides.
In the end we couldn’t resist trying the bread.
Torn between ordering the Foie Gras or the Beef Tartare. I wanted to compare the duck liver compared to West Restaurant, Hawksworth or Araxi Restaurant and how the tartare would to Tableau Bar Bistro; But the Gherkins and Capers attracted me.
I was expecting the gherkins and capers to be served on the side like finger foods and anti pasti. Instead they were mixed together into a pate for you to spread onto your crostini. Remember a little goes a long way. The sharpness balances the raw beef. I can’t help but think that I am so bored of crostinis.
Seared Scallops, Fingerling Potatoes, Black Trumpet Mushrooms & Sea Urchin Froth +3
My BFF ordered the seared scallops. All seared beautifully – crispy outside and tender and juicy inside. The uni froth didn’t taste like much. I was expecting a punch of sea urchin but it was mild.
The night started off quite promising with wine, bread and appetizers. The story changes once we entered the mains. We both ordered the Beef Strip Loin namely because of the smoked bone marrow it advertised. The waitress told me that the bone marrow was not served on the bone itself but infused into the puree. She said to expect richness.
The cut from the short loin consists of muscles and should be tender. Although not as tender as the rib eye or tenderloin I was not expecting it to be chewy at times. I hope this was not a tissue end cut (striploin that contains a half-mooned shape of very tough connective tissue). Our medium-rare was rather dry on the outskirts. Somewhat disappointed when coupled by the fact I didn’t find richness in my bone marrow as solicited. Guess I should not be expecting M Wells.
Moving onto desserts. Apparently my BFF had requested something special and the call back for RSVP confirmed that it could be done. I dunno, letter writing of Happy Birthday and a candle? When our Chocolate Cheescake and Panna Cotta came solo it really upset her. I’m glad our waitress was quick to rectify the issue and helped ease the miscommunication.
She brought us couple pieces of chocolate truffles with a candle. I appreciated that she was creative. The rich coco melted on my fingers once you pick them up. They were actually quite deliciously if you excuse the messiness.
Chocolate Mascarpone Cheesecake, Raspberry Sorbet & Thyme Sable Cookie
A rich chocolate cake. Or a rich chocolate truffle roll posing as cake. Who stole my cheese? We could not take the mascarpone. The raspberry sorbet is tart and delicious. Something much needed to offset the chocolate cake.
Vanilla Bean Panna Cotta, Rhubarb Jellied & Compoted
Very smooth but negative vanilla flavour. I could not see the tiny black specks of vanilla bean in my “delicious” Italian custard. All we could taste was heavy cream. Thank goodness for rhubarb jellied and compoted.
12 Water St, Vancouver
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