Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Clover Food | Drink (Review)

We recently stumbled upon Clover Food and Drink, a new culinary hot spot that took over the organic sandwich shop Bowich on Bank Street. Chef and co-owner West de Castro left her sous-chef position at ZenKitchen to open Clover in the summer of 2014.

Drawing upon her experience at Zen, de Castro has put together a creative, yet simple menu, full of delicious soups, sandwiches and pastas—most of which are vegan friendly. All of the dishes are prepared with locally sourced ingredients from Ottawa’s very own farmers and suppliers.

The restaurant is small, yet cozy and has a very minimalist and industrial-type design, with wooden chairs, benches, caged lights and exposed brick walls. However, despite the stark and sparing decor, it still feels warm and inviting.

This past Wednesday, we ventured over to Clover for lunch. I was torn between ordering the Organic Chicken Wrap ($14) and the Sautéed Chickpeas ($13), but in the end, I went with the Chickpeas, which were served with carrot ribbons, shaved cauliflower, scallions, parsley, and lemon & white balsamic dressing. The flavours were phenomenal and tasted quite fresh, and the dish itself was very nicely presented. It was also just the right portion for lunch and sufficiently filled me up.

My lunch companion went with the Ploughman's ($15), which consisted of hunter's salami, hard boiled egg, aged cheddar, house pickles, maple mustard and a sourdough wedge. The dish was simple, yet satisfying; however, we both had expected an actual sandwich, rather than a charcuterie-type board.

Overall, I was very impressed with the menu and the staff here, and I highly encourage other Ottawa foodies to give it a try. The dinner menu looks equally delicious, and I definitely plan to go back to experience another of de Castro’s culinary creations.

Clover is certainly taking interesting culinary risks and it is just another example of how Ottawa is turning into a food mecca, much like Montreal and Toronto.

Verdict: 8/10 – creative, fresh and locally-sourced dishes

Hours: Monday to Thursday 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., Friday and Saturday 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Price: Lunch ranges from $8 to $15, Dinner ranges from $10 to $25

Clover Food | Drink, 155 Bank Street, Ottawa, ON 

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