Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Play in 4/4 Time

Tango Bistro
6920 Macleod Trail South

Check off another restaurant on the wish list - Tango Bistro. January's been a good month! Located on the busy Macleod Trail within the same complex as Bolero, Smuggler's Inn and Open Sesame, Tango Bistro is the most recent addition to the Smugglers Group of Restaurant. Specializing in tapas/small plates, food is brought out when it's hot and ready and sharing is encouraged with your party. So tell that friend of yours to stop hogging those watchama-call-its and thingamajigs and give you a bite or two. Portions can be revised, for a fee, to suit your party's needs.

We ordered several dishes to start. The first to arrive was the seared scallops. Four large scallops (3 in a regular order plus 1 more for 3 dollars) topped a bowl of parsnip nutmeg puree with wild mushrooms and finished off with a bunch of tastefully placed parsley in the centre. It was almost too pretty eat... 

So I captured the moment with my camera and dug in. It tasted just as good as it looked. The tops of the scallops were seared to a golden brown, the meat was fresh and the flavours were amazing. And to think that I almost didn't get this... That would have been a crime. This was by far the best dish we tried that day.

The prosciutto wrapped Halibut arrived shortly after. This was a no brainer. Prosciutto wrapped anything is good. The halibut was served in a spinach cream sauce with a side of fingerling potatoes. It was pretty good. The meat was quite firm, typical of halibuts, and the flavour was pretty light as to not dampen the clean taste of the fish.

The next dish to be brought out was the braised lamb shoulder. The lamb, not too gamey (that distinctive lamb taste, you'll know it when you taste it), is slow cooked to a tender state and served over a bed of parsnip puree. It came with a side of honey glazed fresh arugula, baby beets and crispy baby carrots. The sweet honey dressing helped cut down the gamey taste of the lamb. Deeelish.

We ordered an extra dish of gnocchi as we were still hungry after our initial three tapas. Topped with two strips of crispy pancetta and long beans, the handmade gnocchi is served with a tomatoey sauce. The doughy gnocchi was soft and squishy and contrasted the crispy pancetta. Despite their different textures, the two complimented each other really well. 

The restaurant was pretty quiet for lunch. I had a choice of parking in the lot, unlike the time I went to Bolero for dinner and I had to park a bazillion blocks away. The decor was simple and clean. Nothing too fancy. The food was anything but. The usage of each ingredient in the dishes was well thought-out and the presentation was top notch. 

As always, please find below my numerical rating in the following categories - Atmosphere, food, presentation, price, service and overall score. Does anyone read the rest of the post? Or do you guys just scroll to the bottom? I know I would.

Atmosphere: 8 out of 10. Simple and clean atmosphere. Spacious.
Food: 10 out of 10. The seared scallops were pretty amazing. I highly recommend it. Unless you are allergic to shell fish. Then maybe don't try it...
Presentation: 8 out of 10. Dishes were very vibrant with the use of various colourful ingredients.
Price: 8 out of 10. Decently priced. Each small plate range from low to mid 'teens.
Service: 8 out of 10. Attentive service. Our server was knowledgable of the menu.
Overall: 8 out of 10. Pretty neat experience. Great for groups of people as you can try many different things. 

Tango Bistro on Urbanspoon


  1. i would like for you to try out some fast food places....i have one in mind.....asian village wok & grill...its located at 736 8th av sw unit 260....along the +15s....great tasting food with a decent menu...just keep in mind it IS fast food with quality...

  2. I will for sure check it out the next time I'm in the area!