The Keg in Yaletown is a Vancouver hot spot frequented by Canucks players, celebrities, socialites, construction workers and everything in between. High class fare, world class surroundings and an exceptional selection of drinks; all in a laid back environment.
The Keg patio is a bright, airy space and the sun was shining making the surroundings sparkle and the wide smiles at tables as we passed were hard to miss! We started out with a few Keg signature cocktails: the Keg Caesar and a delightful mango mojito. The Caesar had the perfect amount of spice, a rarity, and the mojito was a refreshing blend of muddled mint and crisp mango flavours.
Our first course was escargot with stuffed mushroom caps and the special of the day, a tangy, flavourful lobster bisque. Both dishes arrived promptly with a genuine smile from our congenial waiter and did not disappoint! The snails were fresh and the herbs and garlic were well proportioned blending together seamlessly, neither overpowering the other. The bisque was served at the perfect temperature and had a smooth, not overly lumpy, consistency and rich flavour. Both dishes disappeared quickly!
The main event was a medium rare prime rib with a lobster tail and a blue rare filet mignon with king crab legs. My first impression of each cut was excellent, on par with steakhouses that charge exponentially more; well trimmed, thick and hearty! Unable to resist, and forgoing the usual varied order necessary for lifestyle bloggers to make a full and fair assessment, we both ordered the legendary Keg twice baked potato. If you are allowed one potato before you die make it the Keg twice baked potato, it's that good!
The prime rib was cooked to perfection, the perfect medium rare, and could have been cut with a spoon. The lobster tail was clearly fresh, skillfully cracked and presented for ease of inhalation. From time to time you get a bad piece of lobster, no really, a bit chewy, gamey to the nostril and salty, but this was a healthy specimen. I soft texture and very sharp, elegant lobster flavour, a must try!
The filet was grilled to a perfect blue rare. That is the first check mark on a long list of boxes this dish ticked. Thick, but not too thick, and wrapped in a deliciously smoky applewood bacon. Accompanied by crisp, fresh green beans and, not to be overshadowed by vegetables, the king crab legs. Again, thoughtfully cracked for convenience, who wants to work that hard for their food anyway? A wise man once said "what we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly" and though these crab legs were easy to de-shell (obtained cheaply) I esteemed them highly! A perfect flavour and straight from the ocean-type fresh!
For dessert a Billy Miner pie, Mocha ice cream on chocolate crust with hot fudge, caramel and almonds, seemed in order though we were bursting at the seams. A legendary Canadian treat and one that never misses. It was delicious!
The Keg has been around since 1971, a lifetime in a country only 149 years old itself. 86 Keg restaurants sprawl across this great land and each runs to the standards originally set by founder and restaurant legend George Tidball. Head to their website, find the one nearest you and go!
Words: Scott Allan
Photos: Jenn Chan