Once my darling husband had secured tickets for the musical Wicked on our anniversary, I knew that I wanted to go and have a lovely dinner beforehand, to round out the evening completely. To be honest the past couple of years we haven't really done anything on our anniversary and I do believe last year we forgot it entirely. As in woke up the next day and looked at each other and said “Whoops! Happy Belated Anniversary!” I can't even blame Mike, we both simply forgot. So this year I thought we would make up for it.
L2 has been on my list of places to visit for a long time, but since it's in the west end of town, we rarely are even in the area to start with, much less plan a dinner out. But with an excuse – and the Jubilee being 10 minutes away via the Whitemud from West Edmonton Mall- I booked our table.
I really didn't have any idea what we were going to have beforehand, I usually peruse the menu and have something rattling around in my grey matter as to my choices. This time I really didn't have one, Mike spotted the L2 for Two and my dinner fate was sealed.
We were presented with a basket of warm soft buns, butter and a plate of olives, beets and red pepper spread to whet our appetite.
Mike compromised by sharing the Buffalo Mozzarella dish, served with pesto marinated roasted roma tomato, arugula, hemp oil and parsnip curls. You can see that in the picture above. Absolutely a divine start to a protein packed entree,the pesto tomatoes were wonderful and the parsnip curls a crunchy delight.
Between the courses we were also served a lovely mango sorbet, to cleanse our palates in readiness for the entree. Such a small gesture but when one doesn't get this service in most places, a delight to be sure!
The L2 for Two is a monster. Two lobster tails, two filet mignon, two gigantic prawns and half a Cornish game hen served on potatoes and vegetables.
Good lord, look at the size of that prawn. The filet's were done perfectly, I treasure nothing better than a chef who understands “rare” when I order it. Seared on the outside and the center is just barely warmed. One day I am going to be adventuresome and order a steak blue rare, however I am not sure how much I would like a cool center. This was perfectly done so I am loathe to try something I may not like.
For the first time in my entire marriage, I witnessed my husband eat half a lobster tail. True story. He does not eat seafood, which was why this platter worked out so lovely for us. He ate chicken and steak and I ate steak and seafood. However he enjoyed – not just ate for the sake of eating- the lobster tail enough to partake in half.
The price of this platter of heaven is around $84, if I am correct, which in my mind is an absolute steal for two people with the quality and quantity of food presented.
Because we could simply not resist the thought of Crepes Suzette done table-side, we ordered dessert and I simply couldn't tell you where we put it. We were so, so incredibly full but it was worth it. Here's our server Wallace creating them for us, an experience to see for sure.
I had the lovely chance to talk with Chef Shane Chartrand once we were finished our meal, the main reason why we chose L2 was for his talent that I have been hearing about time and time again. Apparently he knew exactly who I was and reads my site, which makes him not only talented but shows that he possesses extremely good taste. *wink* You can also check him out on Breakfast Television here in a segement he did in June. Next time I promise I will get a picture of him, however we had to run to catch our show at the Jubilee and sadly there wasn't nearly enough time to even talk.
During our chat, he told me that L2 is the only place in Edmonton that serves Crepe Suzette table-side and that it generates a mixed response. Some people (I'm thinking management here) think it's too old a cuisine to be found in a modern restaurant, whiles others enjoy it immensely.
I fall into the enjoy it immensely category as I have never had the experience of crepes done table-side. I commented to him that categorizing certain cuisine as too out-dated denies an entire generation the experience. I do like- to an extent- the minimalist, modern approach that most dining establishments are embracing, but this was such a delightful surprise that I was excited to partake in it. My husband and I are in our mid-thirties, meaning that we have yet to experience the older table-side service and dishes that were so prevalent for my parent's generation.
And it was absolutely wonderful.
So for the taste and the sheer dining ambiance the flambe creates, the Crepe Suzette is the Dish I Would Return For.
If I had to choose between a modern minimalist, almost cold approach to dining that is almost everywhere now compared to the warm, friendly experience at L2, the warm wins everytime. It also tops my list as the place to take out of town company now, the menu is a great balance between traditional and edgy cusine, with choices for any preference and topping off the meal with the Crepe Suzette will have the experience stand apart in your guest's mind for sure.
You also will see Chef Chartrand wandering through the dining area on occasion, unobtrusively analyzing the dining room and patrons. I only knew it was him from pictures, otherwise he moves almost like a ghost through there.
The sorbet between courses, the hot hand towels before dessert, the complimentry chocolate on top of the crepes, excellent professional staff and table-side services all are little things that when added to good food, turns a evening dinner into a true night out.
The Let's See If I Remember My Anniversary Next Year Magpie0