Sunday, May 26, 2013

Maestro S.V.P

Mussels, clams, lobster, oysters, crab (etc...) you name it and I am sure I love it - just not the canned type!  I tend to cook a lot of seafood rather than go out for it as many of my friends don't really enjoy these critters, or they claim to be "kosher." Seriously, what is wrong with people?  Prepared properly, seafood has to be the most flavourful and delicious meal ever - well that's definitely my opinion.  A few weeks before Mother's day this year, I asked my Mother where she would like to go for dinner.  Knowing that my Mom loves trying new things, and loves seafood as much as I do, I knew she would come up with a great idea for dinner.   As an oyster "virgin," my Mom asked if we could go and try some oysters, I knew immediately where we should go - Maestro S.V.P!  Where else in Montreal are you going to get a a wide variety of fresh, and delicious oysters? Ok so there are a few other places, but Maestro S.V.P seemed the perfect fit for Mother's day.  

On my "OpenTable" app, I quickly made a reservation for Monday night at 7pm, then tweeted about how excited I was to take my Mom for dinner.  Maestro S.V.P quickly replied that they would be happy to provide a few oysters on the house - so kind!  I quickly thanked them and insisted it wasn't necessary, also I knew I would not be letting anyone know I was there until after I had eaten - anonymity  right?  It was a very kind gesture and I thank you Maestro S.V.P - next time I will take you up on the offer, that's if it still stands! :)


We arrived promptly at 7 pm and we were seated immediately.  The intimate atmosphere is charming and very warm, we loved the energy and vibe right away and immediately felt welcomed and comfortable.  Our waitress was very knowledgeable, even for her first week, and very kind.  She informed us of the varieties of "All you can eat" mussels and other daily specials.  I was surprised that after the waitress greeted us, we were served by another - I believe the owner actually served us.  I recognized her immediately, but still cannot pin point where from.   

   
Wall of Fame - Oysters eaten by celebrities


Our new waitress came to take our orders and I quickly asked her for oyster suggestions.  I myself have eaten all kinds of oysters, don't ask me what kind, but I informed the waitress that this was my Mother's first time.  She quickly suggested the Kumamoto oyster and another, totally blanked on the name but I do know it was an Atlantic coast oyster.  Both oysters arrived beautifully plated on a bed of ice, one with lemon and one we were told to eat plain.  We dug right in, before I could grab a picture, and ate every last bite of oyster.   They were absolutely delicious and we both truly enjoyed the choices made by the waitress.  My Mother also really enjoyed the Oyster martini served with Ketel One vodka, Beausoleil oyster, coriander, lime juice and green Tabasco sauce - spicy and delicious.  I enjoyed my vodka tonic with lime.  




Seared scallops - I almost ate one before taking a picture! OK so I ate half!! :)


After our delicious plates of oysters, we were served our seared scallops - unbelievable!  I have always enjoyed scallops but was a bit hesitant to have them in a Madagascar sauce.  Don't get me wrong, I love a good Madagascar sauce, but on my steak not seafood.  We listened to the waitress who suggested this dish over their other scallops and boy oh boy was she right!  The perfectly sized scallops were very fresh, seared perfectly, not overcooked at all and really meaty - truly delicious.  The sauce had a slight sweet side rather than the peppercorn sauce I assumed would be served, it truly complimented the scallops so well.  My hesitance dissipated immediately, I highly recommend this dish!



Must have crab cakes!!

After licking the scallops plate clean, our crab cakes arrived - Unfreakinbelievable!  No words to describe how fantastic these crab cakes are.  No fillers, not covered in breadcrumbs or a batter, just delicious crab meat formed into delicious cakes and pan-seared rather than deep-fried (no oily flavour and not greasy at all).  Served with a citrus/sweet sauce, these bad boys are not to be missed.  My Mother and I make it a point to try crab cakes everywhere we go, we love crab, and so far we both agreed that Maestro S.V.P's crab cakes are the best we have tasted to date - don't be mad Joe's Stone Crab, I still really love you!



Salmon Tartar


As we finished the crab cakes, I wished I had ordered three orders more, that was until I was served my salmon tartar.  I had ordered the tuna tartar, but hadn't noticed it was salmon until I took my first bite.  It was absolutely delicious and made me forget about the mix up.  I didn't even mention it to the waitress, maybe I should have, but I was not disappointed at all and really enjoyed every last bite of the dish.  Served with fried wontons, the salmon tartar was fresh, spiced just right and so good that I literally scraped every last bite off the plate.  I do have to say that I don't remember seeing salmon tartar on the menu, even online I couldn't find it, but I checked my bill and there it was - I knew I wasn't totally crazy!  




Next came mussels and fries, ok so we pigged out and then pigged out some more!  I mean all you can eat mussels, of course we had to order them!  Maestro SVP always offers three varieties of all you can eat mussels, my Mother decided to start with the Mariniere mussels and sadly they were the only ones she managed to eat.  I tried a few of hers, as I was way too full to order anything else, and they were excellent.  The white wine sauce was loaded with flavour and the mussels were cooked just right - not over cooked and super delicious!  The fries were delicious, crispy and the perfect side for the mussels, the only downfall was their price. 5$ for an order of fries to me seemed a bit expensive, but I was more than happy to treat my Mom to them, and they were really good!

We finished off the mussels and ordered an espresso, no dessert, we were way too stuffed.  I cannot wait for my next visit to Maestro SVP and this time I will make sure I am hungry enough to really take advantage of the all you can eat mussels, I would have loved to try all three variations and next time I will!  

  

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