In her opinion:
We decided to celebrate the last day of March Break in Burlington...a family day spent shopping and eating good food (that doesn't apply to the picky 8 year old that was more excited about McDonalds then anywhere else).
We decided on Spencer's at the Waterfront. We didn't have a reservation but that was no problem as we were shown to a booth right away. After checking out the menu, our waiter Craig came to find out what we wanted to drink. I decided that I wanted to try a Spentini (Strawberry vodka, lillet blanc, POM juice and fresh raspberries).
This was a beautiful cocktail served in a gorgeous vintage glass. It was lovely, you couldn't really taste the alcohol which was fine with me. It was just a lovely mix of flavour.
We decided to share an appetizer. After reviewing the menu...we decided on the Crisp Calamari (chorizo, cilantro and salsa verde).
I kept saying the word fresh as I ate it. The calamari was perfectly cooked. The chorizo was the perfect accompaniment. But the kicker was the cilantro/salsa verde sauce at the bottom of the plate. A wonderful burst of flavour...freshness which reminded me of spring.
For my main, I decided on the Heritage Chicken (sweet corn risotto, cippoline, leek, chanterelle).
This was served on a gorgeous black stone plate. The chicken was flavourful and perfectly cooked. The cippoline, leek slices and chanterelles were wonderfully executed. But the show stopper was definitely the sweet corn risotto. This was just perfection. So delicious.
Overall, this was a gorgeous meal with wonderful food and service. Craig was a greater server who bent over backwards to make our meal fabulous. When I asked for some bread for our son, he brought over the most beautiful bread platter I have seen in a while with gorgeous Bread Bar bread, tapenade, hummas, olives, honey mustard and butter.
I love this place...after all, this is where I picked to have my 40th birthday...that speaks volumes. Enjoy!
In his opinion:
There are few restaurants in Ontario with a location, view and ambience like Spencer's on the Waterfront. It's an ideal spot...lakeside, near the park and surrounded by the tranquility of the artificial pool and the beautifully landscaped hills.
It has for a while been a favourite of ours but having the Cambridge Mill (same owners and similar menus) 5 min away from our residence makes it that we don't visit Burlington as often as we used to.
When we arrrived, we were led to our booth on the Lakeshore Ave. side of the restaurant but then again there are no bad seats in this restaurant. Our waiter was prompt in greeting us and offered some water while we browsed the menu. After some consideration I picked my drink to start. I ordered the appropriately named "Waterfront" Cocktail: Alize, blueberry vodka, lemonade and fresh blueberries. Tasted as good as it looked, believe me....hardest thing was keeping my 8 year old son away from the vodka infused blueberries.
For starters, we picked the Crisp Calamari (chorizo, cilantro and salsa verde) The calamari was perfectly done and the batter managed not to fall of the squid rings, always a good sign of well done calamari. The chorizo was a punch of flavour even if not too well done (I love it charred). The amazing taste of cilantro and a bit of salsa verde topped off this great appetizer. The bagged lime squeeze was perfect.
The choice for entree was not a hard one...I seldom pass on the opportunity of eating a good French dish, so when I realized they had Duck Confit, it was a no brainer. The confit was very good with the skin not as crispy as I'm used to but inside the duck leg was moist and full of flavour. The polenta was not done in the traditional way, more resembling the Madeira style dish of "Milho" but with sage instead of kale.
Not sure if it was the day or how I was feeling but I ended up missing dessert. There really was no room for it and I felt quite satisfied by meals end.
The Good: Stunning setting, great food and great service.
The Bad: Just a little slow on the kitchen on a not too busy day but nothing too worrisome.
The Verdict: A great place to dine but also amazing for their champagne brunch. Worth the drive to Burlington if you are not already there. The service is great and the food is top notch. The perfect setting and ambiance will round out this amazing experience. Just go...
I give it 4 out of 5 Olives as rating