I enjoy meats and cheeses. So I was looking forward to dinner at a new restaurant in Parkdale called Cowbell.
Chef Cutrara is dedicated to serving fresh, simple food. Cowbell’s chalkboard menu changes daily to reflect the availability and freshness of our ingredients. Cutrara and his kitchen are working almost exclusively with naturally-raised, organic meat and produce, sourced from local farmers. Cutrara purchases whole animals, butchers, smokes and cures his meat on the premises. And he churns his own butter!
Actually, Cowbell’s menu changes by the minute.
When we got there the striploin and frites were crossed off the chalkboard menu. Our petite waiter explained that there are only so many striploins on a cow. Apparently the one lone cow downstairs — where they are butchered — was now minus that tasty cut of meat. Fine with me but T. was disappointed. I promised a celebration of meat and I did not deliver.
We looked at the menu and the beet salad looked good to T. She decided to order it and as soon as she uttered her interest, the salad was swiftly crossed off.
Now, the meat I can understand — they use the whole cow — but the beets? T decided against an appetizer but I had the lentil soup with pork belly. It was quite good. S. got a salad and A. got a plate of tiny cured meats. All were tasty.
For our mains, S. and I both got the trout and A. the leg of lamb. T. ordered the pot pie.
A minute later the petite waiter came back and said the pot pie was gone too. So T. was stuck with chicken. It tasted good but chicken is hardly a treat.
So, Cowbell. We enjoyed it — it was a fun evening with good friends — but I think my dining companions and I are just not ready for the farm to table experience. Next time, we need some steak frites and aioli.
And beets. Plenty of beets.