Saturday night it was so cold and the roads were crappy. There was so much salt on the highway we could barely see out the front windshield by the time we got home. Because he is a sweetheart, Reg took me out shopping for my birthday but by the time we were done and made it home safely off the invisible roads and the impenetrable windshield, I was done. I did not want to go all the way back into town for my birthday dinner.
From the moment you walk in, everything feels warm and cozy yet the restaurant is also prestine. All that golden light made you forget about winter outside for a little while. There was a bit of chaos when we walked in: a broken glass, no sign at the front saying if we should wait to be seated, the staff appeared to be so busy it took a while for them to greet us…
When they did I told them we had a reservation and they said they would get a booth ready for us. Then we were taken to an area without the booths. With my bad back, I gently reminded them they said we could have a booth and they quickly prepared one for us.
Reg really wanted to take me to a fancy place downtown, like many of you, my Twitter and Facebook friends recommended. I really did not want to spend a lot of money and I found that the fancier the restaurant was, the more unusual the flavours and protein. Which normally would not be a big deal for me but on my birthday I want just one thing… Seafood!
For me, that is shellfish in a cream sauce. Hold the curry. Hold the anise. Hold all the unusual spices a lot of chefs are using with seafood these days because they are probably bored of the same recipes I grew up with.
I began with spicy calamari. Actually, when I asked about how spicy it was I found out that it was the marinara sauce that was spicy. Our lovely waitress offered to serve it with their garlic aioli instead and I said, yes please!!! Super light, super crispy, I easily ate this entire plate. The garlic aioli was divine. If you order the calamari, make sure to ask for the aioli! So good…
Our dear friends Mike and Jen were brave enough to drive out to Sackville to go to dinner with us to celebrate on such a cold night. It was great because with me being so sick, we really had not had the chance to get together that much over the holidays so our night went by quickly as we ate and caught up.
Reg ordered one of the nicest spinach salads I have ever seen. It looked perfect to me! I adore spinach salad.
Jen ordered the Pan Fried Almondine Haddock and Mike and I got the Seafood Fettuccini. It was very filling and even though there was a lot of tarragon, it was not overpowering, just right. The seafood was perfectly cooked but I did need to add a little seasoning. I like my seafood to taste like the sea so for me, it needed more salt.
Reg ordered the Triple-A Striploin steak with Duchesse potato and peppercorn sauce. He thought it was good but I think for him there was a bit too much going on on the plate. For me, it looked pretty darn tasty!
By the time we ordered dessert the place was thinning out a little. It was pretty packed when we arrived and our server said that the place is just getting more and more popular solely by word of mouth. To be honest, this is the only cozy modern restaurant in Sackville so I can see why people are flocking to it, especially in the winter. Why go downtown when you can have a nice meal way closer to home?
Our table ordered two warm gingerbreads served with rum sauce and old fashioned vanilla ice cream. Reg said it was the best gingerbread he has ever had. I certainly loved the rum sauce but I think the Sou’Wester Restaurant has spoiled gingerbread for me forever. This gingerbread was very good but the one at Peggy’s Cove literally haunts me it was that good.
The chef came to our table and asked us about our meal and it was quite clear from the list of things he had to make the next day, keeping up with demand has been a huge challenge. A great challenge and I think they are doing extremely well. This restaurant makes you feel like you are getting a great deal when it comes to quality and price. The staff were a little frazzled but they were extremely friendly and helpful. The space makes you feel very much at home but is elegant and warm at the same time.
A wonderful change of pace in Lower Sackville. I hope this trend towards more higher-end living and better quality of life continues because it is quite clear, people around here want it and will pay for it. Reg and I, like many others, will be back.