Sunday, 14 July 2013

The Gabardine

A few weeks back I excitedly headed over to The Gabardine with a friend because I saw that they had chicken & waffles on their menu. I have been in search of a good chicken & waffles ever since I heard about this dish. It is essentially savoury fried chicken paired with sweet waffles and syrup, comfort food at its best. 

The Gabardine is known for dressed up comfort food, where classic comfort foods and casual fares are elevated and sometimes reinterpreted. A great example of dressed up comfort food would be Bymark's Butter Braised Lobster Poutine, where the frites are topped with classic bearnaise and chunks of lobster tail rather than the traditional gravy and cheese curds (this will be a future post, once I revisit). 

Apologies, I'm getting side-tracked. Back to the topic at hand, The Gabardine offers dressed up versions of classic comfort food such as Mac and Cheese, Fried Chicken on a Cornmeal Waffle and Sirloin Cheese Burger. I am, of course, there for the chicken & waffles.

Starting with drinks, my friend had the Boulevardier, there is literally no non-alcoholic component to this cocktail, beside the orange twist. The very thought of it makes me shudder. I admire her ability to enjoy such alcoholic concoctions. I, as always, had a Caesar, with freshly grated horseradish. The Caesar was pretty good, nice and spicy.

carpano sweet vermouth, maker's mark, campari & orange twist

 Classic Caesar
clamato, fresh horseradish, tabasco, lea&p, house pickles & lemon

For appetizers, we were really keen on getting their Salt Cod Fritters, served with iceberg lettuce, aioli & piri piri, but unfortunately it was not available. Such a bummer. We ended up splitting the Devilled Eggs and Warm Olives. The Devilled eggs were delicious, with a very creamy filling that wasn't too heavy tasting. The Warm Olives was great to snack on, while waiting for our main course and gossiping incessantly. ;)

Devilled eggs

 Warm olives

For our main course, we both had the Fried Chicken on a Cornmeal Waffle. Unfortunately this was a disappointment for me. The waffle wasn't the breakfast-style waffle that I expected, as it was actually quite salty. I thought the point of the dish is to pair up sweet and savoury? I didn't love the fried chicken either. The plus side is that the chicken was extremely juicy and the coating was very crispy. It was cooked perfectly. But the coating was too thick for my liking and not as flavourful as I would have liked it to be. I personally would not come back here for their fried chicken. Total bummer.

Fried chicken
on a cornmeal waffle with creamed collard greens & maple syrup

We were offered a free dessert because the waitress moved us to a different table mid-meal. We picked the Tres leches cake to share. The dessert was great. The texture of the cake was unusual, because Tres leches cake is sponge cake soaked in three kinds of milk, giving the cake a wet texture. The flavour was great though, creamy, rich, not too sweet. It's definitely worth coming back here for.

Tres leches cake
with mole chocolate ganache, chili roasted pineapple & toasted coconut

Although the chicken & waffle was a disappointment, I plan on coming back here. And I already know exactly what I'm going to try: Salt Cod Fritter to start, Shrimp Po'boy for a main, and ending with the Chocolate Terrine. I'll keep you posted! ;)

Until next time,


Likelihood of Returning* = 3/5

This is a predictor of how likely I will revisit this establishment in the future. My likelihood of returning is dependent upon various factors, such as my personal taste preference, my personal experience at the restaurant, my perception of the value provided by the restaurant, as well as other factors such as location (for example, on a TTC subway line), personal convenience, price and the preference of the friends whom I often dine with.

The Gabardine on Urbanspoon

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