I believe in "signs" ... and today was just another one telling me I belong in the East Village! Today's events were just another example of how a window opens when a door is found shut (literally).
At the last minute my schedule opened up and I decided to head down to the East Village Sales Centre ... and found the doors locked. I could have been upset and disappointed but I decided to take a stroll down the River Walk and explore. I was pleasantly surprised to see so many people enjoying the burst of sunshine we got today (walking, running, biking and roller blading) and then ... I smelled the food coming from the Simmons Building!
I had heard about the businesses in the community and was anticipating the opening of charbar (part of the CHARCUT Roast House legacy) and Phil & Sebastian ... and found them both! The people on the patio seemed to be thoroughly enjoying their food so I decided to stop in and grab a bite to eat.
When I first walked in and spoke with the hostess I was disappointed to find out the the restaurant wasn't officially open and that the people there were attending their soft opening event. Feeling a bit silly I then spoke with the hostess to find out when they would be open for reservations. The stars must have been shining down on me because they actually found me a seat at the bar and took VERY GOOD care of me!
The service was impeccable and one of them actually took me on a tour of the facility and the upstairs events area! The food was also unique and incredibly delicious. With a unique Argentinian-inspired menu, I started with the blistered provoleta (similar to a Greek saganaki), then followed with a tableside ceviche with Tiger's Milk and ended with the sturgeon and capers with a side of roasted beets with queso azul. OMG!!! My belly is so happy right now!
But that's not the best part of my evening. I had the most amazing time meetings some very beautiful and friendly Calgarians and making great friends sitting at that cozy bar. In addition to some laughs and pleasant conversations ... I was greeted to a charbar bill that included ONLY the glass of red wine! It's like it was my birthday!!! I guess because I was the ONLY person who was NOT invited to the soft opening the meal was on the house. I was NOT expecting that ... and am now motivated to make the East Village my home. Thank you to Cho for the hospitality and Katie and Chris for being such wonderful dinner companions!
For anyone who is interested in visiting charbar for an amazing culinary experience, they are officially open this weekend and can be found at www.charbar.ca (use Open Table to secure your seat). I am definitely going back soon!
(This post was originally published on www.sixfootcanasian.com on June 18, 2015)