Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Cafe 13 Main Street Grill

13 Main Street
Cambridge, On


In her opinion:
Chef Michael Boyd recently made contact with us on Twitter having just discovered our blog. He told us how he thought this blog was great (thanks Chef Boyd) and recommended that we come down to Cafe 13 to see him sometime.  So we decided to do just that. We went for lunch on a Sunday afternoon. The restaurant was not full...this seems like the perfect time to go for brunch/lunch in this city.

Our waitress, Kendra was great. Very attentive and came right over to take our drink orders and tell us about the daily specials.

After checking their lunch menu carefully, I ordered the soup of the day to start. It was the "Red lentil and ham hock". 

The soup was very good. It was served with a lovely slice of toasted garlic bread. The ham hock added the perfect amount of smokiness and saltiness to the dish. It was creamy and flavourful. An excellent way to fight the winter temperatures. 

For my main, I was in the mood for chicken wings. I really wanted crispy fried chicken but since there was none around, I opted for the next best thing...chicken wings. Cafe 13's wings come in your choice of dry rub or wet sauce. I picked the medium sauce since it's most reminiscent of Buffalo wings. It was served with house made blue cheese dressing (this version was packed with chunks of blue cheese which I absolutely loved) and veggies (the obligatory carrot and celery sticks). 

The wings tasted great...finger licking goodness. They were crispy and tender. The sauce had the right amount of heat and when dipped in the blue cheese dressing...it was wing perfection! And if you have nothing better to do on a Tuesday...you can get a pint of Flying Monkeys beer and half a kilo of wings for $10.99 (that's the cost of the wings by themselves on any other day).

Cafe 13 is a great place for lunch or dinner. It is an old staple in downtown Galt and I can really see why. We'll be back.

In his opinion:
Walking into Cafe 13 Main Street is like re-visiting an old friend to me. I spent many Thursday nights glued to that front bar with friends, reminiscing of days gone by and enjoying gold fish crackers (wonder if they still have those). Later in my life I also spent many good nights at the restaurant itself having fabulous food.

I find it strange that I had not been there in a while but was glad that Chef Michael Boyd had found our blog, liked it and recommended that we drop by sometime. Coincidentally we had just discussed going there the day before and had mentioned that it had been a while since we were there, so...the next day we took the plunge.

Inside there is still the same "old world" feel, lots of wood and a good mix of English pub meets old French bistro. The staff were very pleasant as I remembered and were engaging and knowledgeable. Our waitress, Kendra was especially wonderful and a great resource for all of our foodie questions

The menu felt "familiar". Lots of good options but needing some infusion of some specials, new dishes to set it aside. We hope the owners are collaborating with Chef Michael to introduce some new excitement to the menu.

It was lunch time on a Sunday so I was happy to be informed that they were serving eggs Benedict as their Sunday special. That was all I had to hear. Well made eggs Benedict are actually hard to find, believe me I have had my share of "pre-packaged" versions of this dish, but I was intrigued to try these.

I was pleasantly impressed with the eggs Benedict that were served to me. Everything was fresh, the English muffins were the right thickness and tasted great. The eggs were perfectly done, creamy as the yoke was broken with the perfect consistency. The part of the dish that really set this dish apart was the cured meat that sat between the bread and the egg. 

At first I thought it was smoked peameal bacon but was informed by Chef Michael that it is actually Berkshire Pork Canadian Bacon from Keystone Farm that is apple brined in house for a week then smoked. It was the best pork I have ever had in any eggs Benedict I have ever had. Absolutely elevates the dish to new heights and alone is a good reason enough to order this dish.

I missed Chef Michael as this was his day off but I was left with the craving to try many more of his dishes and to return to a place that once upon a time was almost like home. I will be back soon.

The Good: Great food executed well and fresh ingredients all around. Great staff and a welcoming ambiance make for a good experience.
The Bad: Not a lot to report but the menu needs some tweaking.
The Verdict: I was extremely happy that Cafe 13 has not lost its charm and ambiance since the last time I was there. My tasting of dishes was limited this time but all I tried (Julie's food included) make me want to try more so it can only mean that the food has even improved. We will be back ; )

I give it 3 1/2 out of 5 Olives as rating

Cafe 13 Main Street Grill on Urbanspoon

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