Prohibition Tasting Room

The Westernmost-end of Yaletown is often a forgotten little piece of quiet paradise.  Removed from the hustle and bustle, this part still sports the same architectural facades and awnings.  And yes, the same parking arrangement as well.  For me, I much prefer this since I can merely find an open parking spot within steps of my intended destination.  I guess most other people are lured to the crowds and people-watching near the core.  That would probably explain yet another new restaurant at the former location of CachĂ©, now being Prohibition Tasting Room.  I recently got an invite to try the place out, so Viv and I made our way down.

Being a craft brewery, I had to start with the Flight of 4 beers consisting of Smuggler Scotch Ale, Bootlegger Amber Ale, Lawless IPA and Hideout Honey Lager (left-to-right).  Naturally, the lager was the most crisp and refreshing while the IPA exhibited very strong hops which was a bit too much for my tastes.  I enjoyed the amber ale as it was smooth with a light citrus finish.  The scotch ale had depth and went down easy.  To go with the drinks, we had the Pretzel Knots with ale cheese, Dijon and pickles.  These were warm, chewy and soft.  The ample poppy and sesame seeds on top formed an appealing crust which was lightly brushed with butter.  With a purposeful saltiness, the ale cheese dip exhibited a mild sharpness that went well with the pretzel.

Onto another appie, we tried the Duck Wings in hot and lemon pepper.  Since duck drumettes are not particularly soft and juicy to begin with, they decided to fry them up crispy.  Good move as the skin was completely rendered and crunchy (but not hard).  The meat underneath was predictably dry, yet that didn't bother us.  We liked the lemon pepper seasoning more as it was salty and tart with just a touch of spice.  We thought the hot sauce was too weak to make an impact.  Onto the mains, the Blind Pig Burger hit the table first. It consisted of 50/50 pork and beef with a side of coleslaw.  With a moist chewiness, the burger patty was natural-tasting and nicely charred.  The addition of banana peppers afforded a tart spicy finish while the ample arugula provided another layer of pepperiness.  We loved the bun because it was soft and airy, yet stood up to the ingredients.  Unfortunately, the coleslaw was not good.  Although it was crunchy and fresh, it was bland and it tasted like they used malt vinegar which left a strange aftertaste.

The best item we had came at the very end being the Steak Frites featuring a 6 oz tenderloin.  Okay, I'm going out on a limb here to say that this was better executed than many French restaurants in town.  The uniformly-shaped tenderloin was prepared a prefect medium-rare while sporting a beautiful char on the outside (which resulted in a smoky finish).  The melted butter on top made the flavours more rich as it was also well-salted.  The accompanying frites were excellent being a firm crispy on the outside and still retaining a soft potato inside.  These were well-salted, but we didn't mind as that went well with the beer.  And really, the food did achieve its purpose - pair with the beverages.  We were pleasantly surprised at that and went away wanting to do a return visit.

*All food and beverages excluding tip were comped*

The Good:
- Solid food to go with the brews
- Not overly expensive

The Bad:
- Not sure if it is necessarily something they can control, but there are too many flies

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