Straight & Marrow – Lots of Potential With Some Tweaking

Straight and Marrow is a new restaurant headed by an local chef – Chris Lam. I found the food and drink menu interesting. There is also a daily features board.

I started off with “The Straight & Marrow” cocktail. I was intrigued by the addition of “beef stock” to the drink. I found it quite good with just a faint taste of the beef stock and the drink was not sweet and well balanced. The first dish came off the board – Escargots. It was served with the chef’s take on a risotto, using potato instead of arborio rice. It is an example of the thought and hints of creativity that is put into each dish. The taste was ok, but I prefer escargots prepared traditionally.

The second dish was also not on the menu – pork jowl. The pork was extremely tender and in general the dish was good.

The third dish was bone marrow with chicken skin. This was very delicious though I found the portion to be small and wished they served both sides of the bone. I remember when we first moved to Canada 30+ years ago, I would accompany my bad to the butcher who would practically give the bone marrow away – now I guess its a delicacy.

The next dish was the uni gnocchi. The uni sauce was delicious though the dish could use a lot more of it. The light drizzle of the sauce was not enough to satisfy.

The last dish we had was fried chicken and oysters. This would be my least favorite dish of the evening. I think that the chicken lacked seasoning. From the name of the dish, I thought the mashed potato would have foie gras in it but I could not taste any.

For dessert we had the corn panna cotta. I thought that more flavor could of been extracted from the corn.

Overall I believe this place has a lot of potential. The dishes are beautifully presented and the service is good. The cocktails are creative and good also. The chef is clearly trying to do something beyond the standard fare without coming across as trying too hard. With a little tweaking, the food would be very good. I would return as new things are added to the menu.

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