La Quercia offers a casual setting, with professional service and exceptional Italian dishes. Focusing primarily on Italian wines, La Quercia provides a unique list to complement an always evolving menu. Ingredients are sourced locally and organic where possible for our daily fresh sheet. A mix of traditional and contemporary plates prepared with precise technique, presented simply are the base of our kitchen.
Came here for dinner with my husband recently for a second time after our first visit a number of years ago when the restaurant first opened. For our first experience we ordered a la carte but this time we decided to go with the seven course dinner for $45 per person. We shared a nice bottle of Italian red which, at $60.00, was one of the more inexpensive ones on the list. Our server explained to us that by ordering the seven courses we were essentially agreeing to give full reign to the chef as the courses they prepare vary from table to table and they basically pick and choose what they send out. We let our server know about a couple of our dietary restrictions/aversions and the kitchen accommodated those so we were happy. Overall, the food was excellent and each course was timed perfectly. While the portions were generally pretty good we both found the two pasta courses to be on the small side. The ravioli dish was particularly sparse with only about five or six pasta shells for each plate. The standouts were the parmesan souffle appetizer, the pork belly and scallops, and the lamb entree. Dessert - a lemon creme with fresh peaches - was out of this world and our coffees following dinner were also excellent. By the end of the meal we were both full but not uncomfortably so. The service was good. We had booked a reservation two weeks in advance and when we arrived our table was ready for us. I could see the potential for inconvenience had our table not been ready as the room is very small and there is no place to wait within the dining room. We did notice the new addition of a wine bar next door, however, which is a good idea since it likely helps to accommodate overflow. All told, our bill with tip came to $200. The food was excellent, the service very good, the ambiance nice but a bit too cozy and the price a touch too high for our tastes. We live in the neighbourhood and will likely go back at a later date but only for a special occasion.
Having read the favourable reviews, I decided to give this place a try, despite its menu's not looking too attractive to me.
Boy, am I glad I did. Everything from the bread (very fresh and soft, accompanied by extremely flavourful olive oil) to the dessert was outstanding. Just the Amuse-bouche alone was impressive enough, both in terms of presentation and flavour. It certainly wetted my appetite for what followed. My appetizer was the quail. It was very hot (i.e., fresh off the oven). The outside was crispy, yet the inside was soft, tender, juicy, and very flavourful. The accompanying salad matched its flavour very well. My main course was rabbit. Both texture and flavour were outstanding. After that, I already felt quite full and was going to skip dessert, but decided that, given everything that had gone on before, I would really be remiss if I didn't try their dessert, so I went for the waiter's recommendation -- lemon cream. Again, the item name didn't sound that attractive to me, and I would not have ordered it had the waiter not recommended it highly, but one mouthful and I was convinced. It was incredible. Rarely have I tasted a dessert that is so memorable.
The bill came to just over $50, and I thought that was pretty good value for what I got.
This restaurant has now become a new favourite of mine.
I was there with a group recently and I was excited to try the Chef's menu since the last I went when they first opened was so terrific.
It was unfortunate that some of the people we were with were not open to trying new things and told our server that they didn't want anything too 'out of the ordinary' (veal, rabbit, lamb etc) which basically meant we did not get any meat dishes to try. What we did have was terrific but I was disappointed that we were not given any meat entrées but that is not the restaurant's fault.
We had some wonderful starters of Halibut fish cakes, prosciutto with melon, burrata with heirloom tomatoes/bread, salmon tar tare, 2 wonderful pastas and our main was perfectly cooked Halibut with green beans.
The lemon cream with blueberries was to die for and I would have licked the plate if I could. This was the second dessert we were given as the first one (cannelloni with cheese filling and bunet were both big fails). The cannelloni shells had a weird after taste similar to being fried in old / overused oil so wasn't great at all. The brunet was bitter and did not have richness. The texture was also a bit off-putting.
I am looking forward to going back and next time will be trying everything.
A cute little restaurant at the tail end of W 4th. Very lovely, Very cozy, loved the specials blackboard and the whole ambiance of this place. The first time we went here was for my birthday last year and I think we ordered a few things off of their specials menu - rabbit, duck, and something else, I don't remember the actual names. But I do recall everything was fresh, delicious and left us wanting to eat more. Food was good sized, plated nicely and we were amazed at the combination of flavors, textures and taste. The chef did a great job. Highly recommended. Book ahead early, because this tiny restaurant fills up fast!
I read about this place in a magazine so I decided I had to take the wife here to try it out. She booked a reso for us (this place is very busy) When entering is seemed very small & crammed. We were seated at a 2 seater table stuck in between two groups. Our elbows were practically touching the people beside us & we were basically involved in their conversations.. It wasn't the most comfortable seating situation (this is my only complaint) but if you can look past this you are in for an excellent meal.
This place is very unique, there was a chalk board with the weekly menu written on it, no menu's. The waitress then went over every item on the list in detail & asked if we had any allergies. We chose to have the tasting menu so they picked what items we were going to get, yes they picked.. & the sharing plates started coming out one at a time. It was about 5 courses I believe & the food was all excellent! I remember the buffalo mozzarella & beat salad, veal stuffed ravioli & a polenta gnocci. Overall the food was Excellent, the service was very professional. The place wasn't the most comfortable. The price was high but it's fine dining so it should be. I al looking forward to returning here for another try.
I've dined here twice. I like it but...space is cramped so unless you are with a group, you will feel uncomfortable if you are only 2 diners sitting next to groups of 4 or 6 as their conversation will certainly drown yours out as the tables have less than foot in between. Food is good especially the family style dining, nice variety, fresh ingredients, a unique experience much like eating at a home of an Italian family but minus the warm and inviting service typical of an Italian family. The service is almost rushed as they try to have you sit, drink and dine within 2 hours. One of the male owners/staff appears abrasive both times we were there and short of flinging the utensils on our table. Its the rushed service that disappoints cuz dinner should be a leisurely thing to be enjoyed, like in Italy where one is never rushed but its Vancouver, tables have to be turned over for profit, but this at a sacrifce of simple good service. I may return again I don't know as I like the food but I really hope they work on their service, even a little.
I have been to a few places like this in Northern Italy. Usually on the way up the mountain you find this old house, taverns or even a cave. You walk in the place and tell the family that we would like to be feed and they feed you excactly what they are eating. This place as soon as I walked in reminded of these places. The waiter looks like Conan Obrien and to be honest he was amazing and problay one of the best waiter I have experienced. We ordered a 7 course meal for only $45. As soon as I ate the food I knew the owners were Italian and the food was amazing. I actually give this place a great review with mixed feeling because it such a small place and it takes up to 2 weeks to find any space. So the more good reviews the harder it will be for me to eat there.
Perfect Northern Italian food done without any compromise. Even the espresso was perfect. Ill be back!!
Made reservations, recommended, on a weekend and tried their $40 tasting menu. The restaurant is located on 4th, almost at Alma. The tasting menu is actually a family type of service where you get large plates meant to share. Started off with some salami and chicken livers on bread - very good. Then a salad made with bread and tomato - nice, grilled sardines - not my fa, thumb print pasta with some greens - very good, gnocchi - very soft and went well with the mushrooms, hangar steak with some salad on top- really tender and tasty and cooked just right. Finished off with some chocolate mousse type of desert and a soft lemon type of dessert. Very good overall and service was great. Small place so it's quite close quarters but very nice.
We came here on the friday before thanksgiving as we've heard they have a tasting menu that was delicious. We made a reservation and we sat among the other diners along the bench. We were a party of 2. I don't mind this type of dining, it was very enjoyable, yes are are very close to the table next to you but funny enough you don't hear anything coming from either side. What your hear is a dull chatter of other diners and the your own conversation, I figure that everyone else is invloved with their own dining expererince that you don't bother listening in on anyways elses.
The room is elegant and clean and very comfortable. We were given the daily offerings by the server and decided in the end to go for the 5 course tasting menu, it was fantastic - the flavours and the variety along with the talent that is showcased on the plate makes for a lovely experience - we ordered a lovely wine from their list, I believe it was called the Luiano, it was a perfect choice to take us through our meal. We enjoyed a charcuterie plate, a carpaccio, 2 pastas courses, a savory custard, a hangar steak and the dessert. The portions were perfect to share and were all delicious - my only complaint was that the pastas didn't come out hot - more warm - but tasty. We dined from 615 until about 815pm and in no way felt rushed to leave. The other diners around us all seemed to be enjoying their meals aswell. I would highly recommend this restaurant. I will definalty be going back, a real treat and a pleasure to have in the neighborhood. If you're looking for great Italian try it.
My bf and I came here for dinner last night and had the $40 chef's creations menu. The first thing that came out was a ravioli soup in beef broth, it tasted alright. Next we had the mediterranean seabass that was nicely cooked with skin still crunchy yet the meat still moist. We both love the seabass cuz it is very full flavoured yet it has a very nice texture. Next, we had trout which was cooked in the same way as the seabass and though we both enjoyed it, but we were expecting a different cooking method. For the pasta, we had veal ravioli, which was pretty good, it was cooked al dente and the pasta was made to order. Then we had the two desserts, which were the lemon cream with rhubarb and the prune cake. The lemon cream was pretty good, a touch too sour for my bf. The prune cake was a little too bland in flavour, maybe cuz we had it after the lemon cream. The service in this restaurant was awesome. They did not even show that they were getting ready to leave when we were the only table in the restaurant at around 11pm. The portion was also good, not too much yet not so little maybe cuz we said that the chef should go easy on the pasta.
In general, we both liked this restaurant and will come back to try to $57 menu when we're hungry.
We arrived last nite (thu.) around 8:30. There was no table available, so we went next door for an aperitif. The server came over to the pub next door to let us know our table was ready. That's service.
We had the 6-course meal for $40 - they pretty much ask you what your likes/dislikes are, and do a menu for you.
We ended up with beet salad, eggplant mousse, gnocchi, pasta, cornish hen and dessert. I struggle to find something to complain about - the seasoning was right, the hots were hot, the colds were cold, the service was impeccable.
We asked for a wine recommendation based on the menu, and though it was good, it was not fabulous. The pairing, I mean, not the wine itself. We ended up with a light-bodied Italian red from Piemonte, which paired very nicely with the gnocchi, and ok with the other starter items, but I think a white recommendation would have been better, if not a very light Beaujolais-villages - but that's neither here nor there at this point.
If anything, the dining space is a bit too intimate with the other diners, sort of a la Lumiere. And, there's no space for you to wait if there's no table right away. You pretty much have to go to the pub next door, or wait outside, I guess. Next time, I won't attempt arrival without a reso.
For me, it's been a long time since the combo of competent service and food came together in such a way. I was impressed.
This place got "best new restaurant" a couple of years ago so we were excited to try it. The service was aloof from the get go, like she was doing us a favour, the menu interesting but the quality of food mediocre. With so many great restaurants, and so many good Italian places, I would not bother to go back.
I was taken here by my friends for a late birthday celebration. We opted for the 5 course family style dinner with the chef choice of courses. We did request the lemon dessert since others who have been here recommend it.
I am sure there were more than 5 course, not including the dessert but I am not complaining.
All courses we had were very tasty and there was more than enough food. My only complaint was that the rabbit meat with the gnocchi was kind of soft (I don't like eating thumper, but my friends liked it)
The dessert platter we had was excellent and the americano coffees were done right.
The service was good- don't know how she managed to serve without knocking things over was amazing. The restaurant is kind of tight on space between the tables. This seems to be a trend among the new restaurants in town. So don't expect to not overhear others conversations.
I highly recommend this restaurant if you can get in. They do observe the 2 hour dining limit, so be warned, they will ask you to go if you overstay your time period.
I normally do not write reviews but this has to be done. I have never been so disappointed by a restaurant ever.
My boyfriend and I came here for our birthdays back in May. We were really excited because of the excellent reviews on dinehere.ca. When I made the reservation, I was told that the only seat available was at the bar. I asked if it was uncomfortable and they told me that it's what the regulars usually request and that it's cozy so I decided to go ahead with the reservation at the bar.
When we arrived, we were seated at the bar, which is a high bench in the corner. At first we thought it was kind of neat, but then it got awkward when the watiress would clean glasses, pour wine, and prepare things right in front of us. Not only that, the dishwasher was right in front of us so it got incredibly hot from the steam coming from it and we were both sweating during out entire meal. The cappucino machine was also right there so it was really loud, to the point my boyfriend and I could barely have a conversation everytime it was used.
We ordered the $57 9-course sharing plates meal and told it was a surprise and that they are all unique dishes. Nothing was unique at all. All of our dishes were from their board they have up. Nothing stood out to us. Just to name a few, we had raw spot prawns which was actually very gooey and really hard to eat. The goose was really dry and was hard to choke down (although this was probably the best dish of all). The worst dish we had was the anchovy spaghetti - it was disgusting! I do not mind anchovies but it was overpowering the entire dish and i tasted anchovies in my mouth throughout the entire meal. The dessert was decent with 3 different kinds on one plate (I do not remember the names) but it still was not outstanding.
We did not receive exceptional service, either. We were barely checked on and our waitress barely had anything to say to us. I felt we were a bit neglected.
I know that this may have been one exception but I am truly disappointed by the entire experience and I will not be back.
We had the opppurtunity to visit this new little gem. Following the trend of chalkboard menus this place is with it. It reminded me of a restaurant in California. The room had a good feel to it. the main attraction for us was the beet ravioli. It was refreshing to see that they make there own stuffed pasta's. It shows attention to detail, originality and creativeness. Too many Italian restaurants don't take the time to make their own pasta or even sauce. This place certainly did both. Was very impressed. Thank You
We went to La Quercia’s for my best friend’s birthday dinner. This is the second time I’ve been there.
As soon as we were seated, we were “reminded” by our waitress that we were 15 mins late to our reservation and that we only have the rest of our 1 hr 45 min reservation window to complete the dinner.
As we talked with the waitress about getting the 5-course sampling menu and whether we can add a risotto to it, she (again) mentioned that because we were late, we cannot even order the risotto with the sampling menu because there’s not enough time. We were very perplexed as they emphasized how flexible this sampling menu is, but the option of substituting the risotto in lieu of one of the pastas in the sampling menu was not suggested to us. We were the ones who asked if we can do a substitution – and it was not cheap, we had to lose one of our pastas in the sampling menu PLUS add an additional $7 per person for the risotto.
When the risotto came, it was extremely salty and the rice was not even fully cooked yet! We told our waitress about this – she did not apologize at all, just said “I’ll let the chef know”.
The next dish came – a veal with morel mushrooms – and it was, again, very salty. The veal was also a little on the tough side. We were not pleased.
After finishing our dessert, the waiter came over and reiterated that we were late to our reservation, we are way past our reservation time and people are waiting. Again, we were perplexed as nobody was waiting at the door – we were prepared to leave if we see people waiting – I’m assuming the people eating and drinking happily at the bar are the ones he was referring to? The waiter was quite rude in talking to us.
The restaurant is VERY crowded and loud – it’s difficult to even talk inside the restaurant! Not recommended if you want a decent conversation with a group.
All in all, I’ll NEVER go back again. It’s not worth the attitude – I can go to Trafalgar Bistro and have a decent risotto in a comfortable environment without being constantly reminded that I have to leave.
I was really looking forward to eating here and was really disappointed. Our server was unfriendly and borderline snotty and not very helpful on both wine and food. We chose the prix fixe menu where the kitchen cooks whatever's on the fresh sheet. You can tell the server a couple of your preferences and dislikes, and the kitchen does the rest.
The pate and puffed pastry appy were pretty good, nothing outstanding, but the 3rd appy which was a terrine of onions/squash and onion/sole was quite vinegary and tart. We told the server that in a nice way, since she asked how we liked our food, and she just made a face. If you don't care to know, why ask?
The pasta with pork and chilies was pretty good, but the eggplant parmigiana was mushy, overcooked, not very flavourful and overly rich. The variety of desserts was ok, with the apple pie being a standout, except for one that tasted like spongy fruitcake. All in all, food was average (or below average for some dishes) for this type of restaurant. Would not go back. Ambiance is nice though.
I just got back from this restaurant with my boyfriend. We had heard about the $57 per person nine course tasting menu and had prepared ourselves for that by eating very little all day (we heard it was very filling). We ordered the $57 tasting menu and a bottle of red wine. They will ask you about likes/dislikes/allergies before serving the courses. The wine list is extensive and has a good selection of Italian wines at various price points.
We had a selection of 3 antipastos, 1 pasta, 1 gnocchi, 1 meat, and 1 dessert. Our favourite was the homemade rotini pasta with smoked pigs cheek and goat ricotta cheese. Also worth noting were the antipastos and the dessert which was a cannelloni pastry with cheese filling and lemon creme.
Service was great. The menu is small but there are a lot of specials on a black board and all the specials were explained once we were seated. Our server was also very helpful with choosing a wine. Each course was explained to us when it was served. Water and wine were refilled throughout the evening.
The place is very small and the tables are very close together but I did not feel it to be bothersome. The decorations are simple but the place is comfortable.
The seven courses took us just over 2 hours to finish. The courses were well spaced apart with enough time to enjoy the flavours and not feel rushed. When we received our bill, we were expecting to pay $57/person, but I guess because we did not have time to get our full 9 courses (it was 8:25 when we arrived), we were only charged $40 each. I think $40 for a very filling and high quality 7 course meal is good value. I would return for the great food and possibly try some of the pastas on special on the board, many of which seemed to be under $20.
Went to La Quercia for a dinner on a late wednesday night and was surprised to see the restaurant full of patrons. Reservations are a definite must since this place seems to be busy. The servers were friendly, charming and courteous. The items on the blackboard above the kitchen serving area was a bit dim and difficult to read in the current lighting setup. Furthermore, i found it a little bit trying to hear my partner during our dinner as conversations from the other patrons seemed to bounce around quite a bit. The food was served quickly on warmed plates and was quite tasty. The pasta appears to be made in-house (which is expected of an italian restaurant) with just the right about of sauce. Overall, I had a great dining experience and would like to come back with a larger group of people to try a bit of everything on the menu.
We have only been once. It is incredibly hard to get reservations and you have to know you want to go there many days in advance. (Not our best thing all that planning ahead-how on earth do I know I want to eat there so far ahead of time?) Finally after several attempts we get a reservation for 4 at 6:30 for a Friday night. We were told we had to be out within 2 hours though which I don't appreciate hearing from a restaurant. When we are dining with friends we want to be leisurely and enjoy the process and get caught up with each other. They could change that aspect-don't accept a reservation and tell someone they have to get out-if you can't accomdate then don't take the reservation.
The food was good, everyone very much enjoyed what they had and we all had different dishes. The wine list is okay, but not too exciting; I did manage to find something that paired well with my pasta but the choices are limited.
The service was pretty good as well-not excellent but fine. Two of us wanted to try the "family style" but they said the whole table had to have that or we couldn't. No idea why though-why not accomodate what your guests want?
The room is very small and they have crammed the tables in so tightly that you can't really have a private conversation-you inevitably have to hear what is happening right next to you. They might consider removing some of the tables and making it a little nicer atmosphere. The tables are small so 4 people at one made it pretty tight for the plates as things arrived.