I usually plan something on the adventurous side for my birthday (kayaking, cycling around wine country, ziplining, etc) but this year I decided to relax and go to treat myself to a nice dinner at a restaurant that has been on my list for a long time – Ruby Watch Co. Most people know of this restaurant because it’s where you can find celebrity chef Lynn Crawford working in the kitchen. She is there most nights except when she is busy filming the show “Pitchin’ In” that airs on Food Network.
The interesting thing about the menu at Ruby Watch Co is that there really isn’t one. The menu is decided that week with each day offering something uniquely different. Courses are presented family style (love this) in the centre of the table where people can help themselves. The meal consists of 4 courses (one being a cheese plate) for $49 with suggested wine pairings for each course for an additional charge. I really love this concept.
The vibe of the restaurant is fun and upscale but nowhere near feeling pretentious. The servers are wonderful with some being fun and entertaining characters which totally adds to the experience. You can see Chef Lynn Crawford at the back putting the final touches on each dish as it’s being handed off to the servers.
And get this, Chef Lynn Crawford tweets! Every so often she would take out her iPhone and type away. The group next to us tweeted to her during dinner and she even tweeted back to me between courses. Amazing! How often do you go to a restaurant where the chef tweets back to you while you’re having dinner? Our meal consisted of a mint and chili marinated watermelon salad, coffee rubbed leg of lamb with caramalized onion jus, a raw cow’s milk artisanal Canadian cheese and a blueberry cheesecake. The sides that went with the main dish (the lamb) were a quinoa salad with lemon, mint and herb goat cheese, a cucumber and tomato salad with yoghurt dressing and roasted zucchini and eggplant with olive relish. My friends and I never knew that cucumbers and eggplant could taste so good! I think I may have actually enjoyed the sides with all the wonderful fresh flavours more than the actual main which was lamb (and I love lamb). I never knew that quinoa and something as simple as a cucumber could taste so darn good! Chef Lynn really works her magic.
I have to say that our waiter, Marty really stole the show. Such a great character, his over the top flair kept us entertained and laughing the entire evening. Ruby Watch Co isn’t a place that I would go for a weekly meal (I don’t quite have the disposable income to go there all the time) but if I want to have a great meal, be inspired and try something different (because the menu is always changing), this place is definitely on the top of my list. I really love the family style presentation and the wonderful service. I, for one, always found it a little hard to take a plate that is beautifully presented and have to make sure I manage to grab bits and pieces of every aspect to experience the combination of flavours. With family style, I don’t have to worry about that. Just dig in and enjoy! Bon Appetite!