Hoogan & Beaufort
4095 Molson St. (Angus Yards)
Cost: $ 135.67 for two
Chef Hats: 4
Summer has come and gone; the warm weather is waning and the hot summer days and terrace weather days are numbered. If weather not permitting, the warmth of a pub is so comforting and Hoogan and Beaufort with it fire pit kitchen is the perfect place. Falling into the category of Gastro pub, it is always optimal inside and out when comfort food is in check. Garnishing great reviews of late, I would classify it a notch or more above just a regular pub.
Set in Rosemont in the trendy area surrounding Angus yards it gets its name from the original owners who used to own the farmland before Canadian Pacific Railway purchased the property. Enter Marc-André Jetté (a class act) and Sommelier William Saulnier of Restaurant Les 400 Coups fame, who in December 2015 opened Hoogan and Beaufort on the same spot all while paying homage to its agricultural past and the buildings history. Furthermore, the space was revamped by none other Alexander Baldwin of Dominion Square Tavern, all while incorporating recycled products from the old shipyards.
Well thought out in process, this is evident in the decor as soon as you enter. The place has a trendy buzz with its industrial look. One can’t help but notice the high ceiling with wood beams, the large windows and open kitchen concept and central bar. The decor is modest yet modern in a way. Seating is comfortable, lines clean and unfussy. What is awesome for the patrons of Hoogan and Beaufort is definitely its kitchen and its fire pit. Strategically placed at the center of the room you can watch the staff creating their lovely gastronomic dishes that incorporate local products and ingenious creations of dishes with the most original of ingredients. The show itself can keep you inspired for hours.
Service here is excellent, impeccably professional, solicitous and accommodating. The restaurant caters to people with allergies; as well their dishes are free of nitrates and nuts, a big plus for those who have severe food allergies. The staff is very knowledgeable when it comes to the menu and wine list.
Saulnier has compiled an extensive and original wine list, with a great selection of local and European imported beers as well. They serve great wines by the glass at reasonable prices and the classic refined digestifs to please any palate. All are a must try.
The menu is something else; it reads more like a fancy French bistro than a pub. If you are a table of 8 or more, they suggest a menu degustation at $ 65.00 all around. Otherwise you can choose a la carte. Be warned they do not serve complimentary baskets of bread, if bread is desired with the meal you will have to purchase their Focaccia Brulée et Beurre for $ 3.00; but it is well worth it.
Hoogan & Beaufort is for those traditional foodies who appreciate good food in a cool hip environment. It is not a typical hungry man pub, or for those with very big appetites. The portions are small, but the quality and reasonable prices are fair and balances things out.
The food is fantastic. All items sampled were very tasty, flavourful and outright delicious. For entrée we had the Tataki de Cerf de Boileau, with Oignon Vert Grille, armillaire de Miel, raifort cresson tournesol for $ 17 00. Five generous slices topped with tiny mushrooms and watercress. Beautifully presented, it was very tender and not at all gamy.
For seconds we had two pasta dishes the Agnoletti au fromage frais, carotte, Yuzu Kosho, & coppa for $14.00. The Agnoletti were filled with fresh cheese, the carrot sauce was deliciously creamy The prescribed coppa looked more like strips of regular bacon than salt cured ham , but then it is hard to tell sometimes, the texture was interesting and a winning combination with the pine nuts and Yuzu broth.
The second pasta dish sampled, was the Garganelli au Canard Confit et Chevre Noir for $15.00. These were just as good yet different in taste & texture. Mixed with pieces of duck confit, crispy chicken skin and Chinese artichokes and chevre noir cheese all mixed in to create an even deeper flavor.
My partner had the bouillabaisse. This was fine but not the typical dish as it lacked the broth that he is so typically accustomed too when eating this fishy stew. We are used to seeing a red tomato sauce, but these came with a green sauce, obviously made out of sort of greens. The origins unknown in this case.
Our friends shared the Magret de Canard de la Ferme La Canardiere for two at $60.00.They loved the dish and thought it excellent; the duck was really tender and not fatty at all. They could have had second portions and felt it just was not enough.
Dessert taken was a Chocolate au lait with Poire meringue an l’érable and a crumble of cacao for $ 9.00, totally decadent and shared by two with good coffee and a digestif of chartreuse for the ladies and whisky and scotch for the guys. It was a great end to a great meal and lots of great conversation, laughs and showmanship experienced by all. We had such a good time we wanted to stay till the wee hours of the morning.