Wildflower and the Sad State of Canadian Cuisine

Review

Think of famous Canadian cuisine.

No really, think of a famous Canadian dish, I dare you.

I’ll even give you a moment.

Done?

Now odds are you probably thought of the soggy, greasy pile of afterbirth we like to call a poutine.

This is apparently the best we can do.

This is apparently the best we can do.

Bonus points if you came up with the Nanaimo bar (which happens to be a dessert that you don’t even need to fucking cook).

Now what was the point of that little exercise?

Consider it mental preparation for the disappointment that is:

Wildflower Grill – New Canadian Cuisine

We can start off with the silver lining.

I personally enjoy the decor in the restaurant. It’s mellow and moody and just a bit atmospheric. The light fixtures look custom-made, and there’s actual paintings on the walls, not just cheap, plastic reprints.

Maybe they should've spent the money on a better chef.

Maybe they should’ve spent the money on a better chef.

While I found it a little bit on the dim side, some other people may find that to be a selling point.

I don’t know, maybe your date is heinous and you just want to get drunk and not look at their face, who knows.

This works too.

This works too.

The food came out in roughly 20 minutes, and the plating was, for the most part, acceptable.

And that’s just about it.


Now onto the food.

I ordered the “Alberta Roast Beef”.

Fucking yes.

In case you didn’t know, Wildflower is a CANADIAN restaurant. CANADA is even in the name of the fucking place. All of the ingredients here are CANADIAN. 

This guy covers himself in maple syrup and fucks a moose in the corner of the restaurant for extra Canada.

This guy covers himself in maple syrup and fucks a moose in the corner of the restaurant for extra Canada.

They breathe, bleed and shit CANADA. No doubt this is to appeal to the modern patriotic CANADIAN, but let me tell you this, regardless of how much CANADA they stuff into the fucking menu, it’s not going to change the fact that the food is, for lack of a better word, garbage.

My point is validated by the fact that they decided to serve my Yorkshire pudding in the form of a god damned poutine.

I'm not even kidding.

I’m not even kidding.

In a desperate effort to milk the CANADA theme, they decided to pile rubbery, white processed cheese and gravy onto the beef and pudding and bake the shit out of it.

Let me walk you through why this was a terrible idea.

First off, the individual ingredients were just bad. The roast beef had clearly been left out and was a dried, leathery husk by the time it arrived at my table. The beef was a blackish-brown all the way through and was an interesting combination of dry and bland.

The cheese was a processed white cheddar, and had been baked to a hard, salty crust.

Trust me, it tastes worse than it looks.

Trust me, it tastes worse than it looks.

The worst, however, was the pudding itself. Normally, Yorkshire puddings are airy, voluminous pastries, with big air pockets for soaking up gravy and meat juices. The mess I was served had obviously been placed into the oven raw with the rest of the ingredients on top of it. This ensured that the pudding could not rise, and remained a rubbery, egg-y, doughy mess. There were no air bubbles in the pastry whatsoever. The experience was akin to eating a 3/4 inch thick flavorless crepe.

Oh, and the ‘horseradish jus’ is actually just gravy. I didn’t taste any horseradish, but it may just have been drowned out by the bitter taste of overwhelming failure.

But hey, the plating was good!

Oh, and it came with a little basket of fries and something called “barbeque sauce aioli”.

Jesus fucking Christ.

He died for your sauce-related sins.

He died for your sauce-related sins.

I couldn’t make this up if i tried.

To be honest, the fries weren’t bad at all. The “aioli” tasted like someone mixed barbeque sauce with mayonnaise, ate it, then vomited it into a tiny little cup.


The Good

  • Decor is nice
  • Fries are good
  • Plating was sort of creative
  • No vermin I guess???

The Bad

  • The food. Everything about it. Execution, taste, even the fucking idea behind it was just horrible.

The Ugly

  • A restaurant that describes itself as a “Gold Medal winning, contemporary fine dining restaurant concept” with “best in class” food is serving poutine based abominations and does not see anything wrong with that.
  • Last time I was there, someone in our party ordered the double-fish monstrosity and the entire dining area stank like a womens locker room.
There's two things in life that smell like fish... and one of them is fish.

There’s two things in life that smell like fish… and one of them is fish.

Don’t let the glitzy decor, brain-dead patriotism or fancy plating fool you.

The food is bad, and they should feel bad.

Go to the Marc instead, they’re right across the street and I promise they won’t serve you poutine.

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