The Mahle House
The Mahle House has been the Nanaimo’s go-to restaurant for special occasions and romantic dinners for a while now. The only thing that tampers with a sure fire meal to get you lucky is the discussion about who’s going to drive home. Cakes and I were having a date night, apparently our friend Morgan was sad he wasn’t invited along to “add” to the mood. I’ve been to the Mahle House many times over the years and I’ve never been disappointed, I was feeling a little spoiled for a while and was a little bored of the same delicious food that they make, but that’s just me. We headed out for an Adventure Wednesday experience.
The big old Orange house is gorgeous and the dining room is warm and inviting. This is a classy joint, so we’ve got 3 servers, the Somalier, the Waitress (is that still acceptable?) and the obviously new bus girl, who had some awesome descriptions of the food including a grand sweeping gesture followed by, “….ummm… chocolate crumb things…” It was completely endearing, because really who can remember everything on the plate when everyone gets 5 different dishes?!
The food was great, I had an definite Asian feel, while Cakes was slightly less inspired by her “Mediterranean” adventure. Hold on, because it was 5 course, we both had different things and wine pairings. (Well, Cakes only had a half a wine pairing, because she’s lovely, and drove us home safely.)
Whole wheat Molasses Bread from Coco Cafe.
Cedar Creek Proprietor’s Blend. Salmon Cake, smoked paprika oil, celeriac and carrot salad. Albacore Tuna with Togerash spice, buckwheat noodles, citrus ginger sauce. (This tasted like lemon sorbet to me–in a good way!)
Vieux Pane Petite Blanc. Pea & Ham Soup (you can see how Cakes was less that marveled – although it was VERY good soup!) Chicken Roulades rolled with Peanuts and ”something,” Wasabi ginger sauce, pine nuts and apricot chutney. This was a very flavourful dish. I was completely impressed, until I found myself left with a 1/4 cup of chutney, which was good, but a little overwhelming.
Spanish Hecata Syrah Granache. “Our take on a Greek Salad with feta cheese and olives.” This actually made me giggle, because what ELSE is in a Greek Salad?! They did do a really lovely roasted tomato vinaigrette. Duck Confit Salad with Wonton crisps and ginger sesame vinaigrette. I’m a sucker for Duck Confit.
At this point we’ve established some friendly banter with our waitress, she knows what she’s doing and very attentive and friendly. That is, until she dropped (a very unbalanced and thus totally not her fault) knife on me. She was so embarrassed! I said don’t worry. It’ happens. I’m fine! She stops. “No! I literally THREW A KNIFE AT YOU…. I’m going to get you more wine!” And then she ran off to do just that and who was I to argue?!
Cedar Creek Pinot Noir (notes of plum.) Sablefish with Barley risotto and roasted tomato puree. Lovely fresh piece of fish, but the plate was lacking texture…. This is what happens when we go to fancy places that try really hard and have many moves on the plate — we get fussy. Cornish Game Hen, coconut curry sauce, chicken sticky bun. The sticky bun was a revelation. I loved it!
Coffee. Frozen tiramisu with coffee sauce. Chocolate Pumpkin moose with pumpkin seed brittle and creme fraiche.
I was perfectly content to let Cakes drive us home!