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Ikanos:

Mezze Galore for MTLaTABLE

RESTAURANT GREEK OLD MONTREAL TRENDY <$40

The Pitch

Amidst the Japanese and Italian brasserie explosion taking place all across town, it's actually refreshing to see something different join the McGill restaurant row in Old Montreal.  The latest addition here comes from the team behind the defunct Tasso Bar à Mezze, in the form of a modern Greek/Mediterranean mezze restaurant.  We figured what better way to discover this place on MTLàTABLE's opening night.

The Mood

Mood image

The appealing modern interior is not what you would expect from a Greek taverna.  The industrial space is loosely divided into two dining rooms separated by an eye-catching bar area.  The restaurant was about half-full (or half-empty for you pessimists out there), perhaps due to the unexpectedly chilly Thursday night.

tagged:  EYE FOR DESIGN

The Food

From what we gather, the focus at Ikanos is on mezzes.  The MTLàTABLE menu did not stray away from this promise, and was actually quite generous.  Rather than stick to the usual 3-course formula, the $39 menu featured four starters and two mains.  The portions were small, but the number of plates offered combined with the seafood diversity more than made up for that.

Our general consensus was that there was too much going on with most plates; the toppings on the flounder, tuna and scallops masked what lay beneath.  The halibut and duck garnered praise, while the moussaka and honey donuts (loukoumades really), not part of the $39 menu, were just OK.  Finally, without being experts on the cuisine, we would describe what we ate as Greek "inspired" at most.

Carpaccio of the Day thumbnail (click to enlarge)

Starter

Starter

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Carpaccio of the Day

"salted cured fluke (summer flounder)"

Kalamata Brined Tuna Tataki thumbnail (click to enlarge)

Starter

Starter

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Kalamata Brined Tuna Tataki

"cherry tomato sauce vierge, French string beans, white anchovies"

Josper Grilled Halibut thumbnail (click to enlarge)

Starter

Starter

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Josper Grilled Halibut

"sautéed heirloom zucchinis, spinach, grilled baby leeks"

Seared Scallops thumbnail (click to enlarge)

Starter

Starter

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Seared Scallops

"foie gras shavings in Samos, sautéed Brussels sprouts and apples, parsley root puree and hazelnut crumble"

Seared Canardière Duck Magret thumbnail (click to enlarge)

Main

Main

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Seared Canardière Duck Magret

"roasted eggplants, tahini cream, marinated oyster mushroom salad"

Ravioli Moussaka Style thumbnail (click to enlarge)

Main

Main

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Ravioli Moussaka Style

Honey Doughnuts thumbnail (click to enlarge)

Dessert

Dessert

$10

$10

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Honey Doughnuts

"orange and honey panna cotta, nuts and spice crumble"

tagged:  GREAT VALUE TABLE D'HÔTE TRYING TOO HARD

The Service

Our waiter, while very serious in demeanor, was actually quite friendly and helpful, not to mention very knowledgeable about both the food and wine offering.  None of this "let me ask" business…

The Verdict

Montreal is currently experiencing an unprecedented boom in restaurant openings.  The majority of newcomers seem to emphasize design and follow trends, which caters to yuppies more than foodies.  We won't throw Ikanos into this bucket before a follow-up visit, which will allow us to sample their full menu.  Either way, don't expect tzatziki, dolmas and gyros here, but do expect some fun!

tagged:  DESERVES A RETRY

Price per person:  $39

Comments

julia

"The dishes look so fresh! What's your favorite Greek dish? Share it on your besty list! http://www.thebesty.com/514eats"

posted Nov 14, 2014 @ 12:10

514eats

Montreal restaurant and bar reviews brought to you by two regular guys who like to eat and drink.  We will go anywhere and we will say it like it is.

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