After reading such fantastic reviews, I decided to try out the Refinery myself, and I was very much impressed!
I took my boyfriend here for our monthly dinner date, and right away was impressed by the decor. The restaurant itself is small, but the design has a cool feel to it, while remaining quite comfortable. We sat in the back room at a little table for two, which I really liked the windows and candles in. Despite it being seven thirty on a Friday night, things were pretty quiet.
Our server was friendly, very attentive, and knowledgeable about the menu. Not at all overbearing and was honest about the kitchen staff being new: she told us if anything came out even slightly incorrect to just let her know, so I appreciated this. We had one plate brought out to us by another server, who unfortunately had almost no idea about the dish he was serving (and this was one that you needed to know everything on it), which was a small blip in the service aspect. Other than that, though, everything was great.
Onto the food! We started with the mixed board, which was two cheeses (blue cheese and an aged cheddar), two meats (cured sliced pork and buffalo salami), and an assortment of extras (sliced apple, apricot jam, walnuts and dried figs), served with croistinis. While I personally wasn't a fan of the pork, I adored the buffalo salami and thought the blue cheese was just perfect with the apricot jam. We then moved onto two of their bruchettas: one caramelized onion and goat cheese, and one garlic aoli and egg. Both were delicious! I particularly loved the garlic and egg one, since the egg was cooked perfectly and the aoli was really great. Under their "tapas" menu, we shared the seared scallops, roasted duck, and scalloped potatoes. I'd say that the scalloped potatoes were my favourite, and my boyfriend loved the scallops (I never like scallops so this isn't my forte, haha); while the duck was great in the middle pieces, I found it to be overcooked a little. That said, though, the red wine reduction it was served with was super flavourful and it was still a delicious dish. Finally, we finished off with the meatballs; we were worried they would be heavy, but they were the lightest, fluffiest meatballs I've ever eaten! Extremely delicious. I'd go back just for the sake of having these.
Drinks wise, my boyfriend had two beers (one on tap, the other bottled; I can't remember which they were, sadly), and I had a Georgian Lemonade cocktail and a Fruli. The cocktail was perfect mix of sweet and sour. I'd love to try more of their creations :)
We opted out of dessert because they only had two options (and we had been craving Thierry, haha), but for everything we had, including drinks, the bill came up to just $115. Considering we practically rolled out of the restaurant because we were so full, this is an amazing price. The food is great quality, the room is charming and relaxed, the service is friendly and warm and all in all, the experience was a good one. I can't wait to come back and try out some more tapas!
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