Beef Carpaccio at E18teen…

E18teen Beef Carpaccio

Well, I have start out by saying that E18teen is one of my favorite restaurants in Ottawa. The ambience is great, the service always top-notch, and the dishes I have been served have all been pretty much excellent. Occasionally, though, every good restaurant is going to produce a ‘clanger’ or two, and the Beef Carpaccio interpretation I had on my last visit sadly fell into that category …

The menu described the selection as follows:

 

Beef Carpaccio

Smoked oyster emulsion, fried caper, harissa aioli, pickled shallot, garnished with baby shiso leaf

 

Well … to unpack this, I can say that the beef was sliced well and laid out nicely, which makes this pretty good so far a ‘Carpaccio’ dish, but, from there, unfortunately, things started to go downhill.

The pickled shallot was nice, and added a bit of tang to the overall effect and the fried capers had a nice smoky taste. The smoked oyster aioli, however, did not work. The idea of making a mayo type emulsion using the oil from smoked oysters was a truly inspired idea, I thought,  but the pairing here was a bit unfortunate. Somewhere else, perhaps, but not for this dish …

The real mistake was the olive oil. In other carpaccia, there is almost always a drizzle of olive oil over the beef slices but here, the drizzle became a river … everything was basically swimming in the stuff so that all the delicate flavors were overwhelmed and the textures largely lost in an unctuous mess… What a shame.

Sorry E18teen. I will be back, but this one was not a winner …

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