Review: Small plates celebrated at Enoteca
Chef Scott Bagshaw is one of Winnipeg's most notable chefs. When he opened Deseo in October 2010, the Spanish tapas spot was instantly praised for its innovation on plates.
Winnipeggers instantly fell in love with his little and big plates that all captured his joy of cooking.
And since then, Bagshaw has been a visible player on the city's vibrant and ever-blossoming food scene. Dinner at Deseo is still a hot ticket in this town.
And now we have another place to sample Bagshaw's stellar bites. In summer 2014, he debuted Enoteca, his small plates eatery and wine bar in River Heights.
With its slick wooden tables, leather banquettes and open kitchen and chef's table, Enoteca's design screams modern urban. It is simple, unfettered and sophisticated all at once.
And so is Bagshaw's menu. With just 15 options on the menu, the carefully considered plates really showcase Bagshaw's talent for layering flavours, serving the best of the season and pushing our palates. Take a look at Enoteca's menu here.
On our visit we started with a green salad like no other. Rough-cut chunks of jicama, celery, cucumber and romaine were the foundation for a melange of slightly spicy wasabi peas, edamame and pistachios. A lime vinaigrette and a generous smear of creme fraiche finished this delightfully crunchy salad with equal parts heat, sweet and tart.
Dishes came at a quick but manageable pace. House-made duck pastrami on brioche ranks up there as one of the best sammies in Winnipeg. (Deer + Almond's Benny and the Jets still has my heart too.)
Roasted cauliflower with parmesan gratin, apples, Marcona almonds and cocoa had me rethinking my 'meh' feelings about this wishy washy vegetable. The tender and tasty flowers make a smart and much lighter replacement for any potato craving.
I typically like my anchovies hidden but I may have to rethink that policy after tucking into Enoteca's zucchini fritters. Each fritter (a special on the day we visited) was topped with micro-greens and strips of anchovies. This earthy, crunchy morsel delivered a smidgen of salty brine in every bite.
A varied and thoughtful wine menu completed our perfect evening at Enoteca.
Insider's tip: reservations recommended at this dinner spot.
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