Burger 222: two six {ate} | Mr. Lew's Great Burger Search

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268 Preston
Ottawa, Ontario

Bus:  OC Transpo 14, 85, 107

Visit:  November 17, 2013

http://twosixate.com/

My second burger on this day in Ottawa had to be one that was interesting.  There were many contenders, but one had a little something extra that was worth checking out before making my way back home.  Named after the address on Preston Street, two six {ate} provides the finale for my fourth Ottawa burger trip.

The challenge in doing two burgers in one day is the fact that there might not be enough room to fit in all that food.  I felt somewhat stuffed after my first visit to The Smoque Shack earlier in the day, but that wasn’t enough to stop me from the main event stop to two six {ate}.

Choosing the burgers for this Ottawa trip was a real challenge.  There were so many places that I wanted to visit, but I just didn’t have the time.  I’m starting to think that I would have to spend an entire week in the nation’s capital to just get all that burgering done.  This restaurant was the eventual winner because of one main reason, their small plate concept.

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Say what you want about small plates, it may be all the rage, but it was the appropriate way to assure that I wouldn’t be regretting double duty.  I used to be all about eating as much as I could, but those days are long behind me.  I’m starting to see eating as a chore and that’s a complete 180 from the heavier me’s thinking.  Though, I’ve been spending more money on food lately, I’ve limited my outings as much as I could.

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two six {ate} was one of the few restaurants that was open on a Sunday and that’s what worked for me.  When I entered, I was the only person there and I was given a choice as to where I wanted to sit.  From my vantage point, I could see part of the kitchen and the entire dining floor.  The restaurant isn’t that big, as it can seat about 20-25 people.

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Since it was empty, the floor was being taken care by one person.  This person was well versed in the menu and handled everything expertly.  With every dish that was delivered to my table, I was asked how it was, something that you’d be lucky to get even once.

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The one thing I noticed was the fact that this place seemed like a single person restaurant.  This was the case because 3 more tables of individuals entered later on.  It’s odd when you see 1 person at a table, but here, there were at least 4 of us.  It was only after all those single tables came in that a group one showed up.  I was worried about the success of the restaurant, but the place was full enough as I Ieft.

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Ham and Cheese Arancino ($6)

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Over the last year, I’ve been consuming a lot of arancini and I haven’t regretted any of it.  The risotto balls are usually filled with cheese and covered with a crispy shell.  This particular one was different because there was ham inside.  That would be the first time that I ever had meat in one.  The arancino was on par with all the ones I ever had and the inclusion of ham meshed well with everything else.

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Foie Burger ($13)

This burger contains greens, bacon jam, caramelized onions, and foie gras terrine.

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The reason why I chose this restaurant was more or less, the bacon jam.  There were some other things that were interesting like the foie gras, but that bacon jam sealed the deal when I was indecisive.  What’s also interesting was the fact that this burger was in line with the small plate movement, as it was quite smaller than an average burger.

I knew I was in for a decent experience when the server came to me and mentioned how the kitchen prefers to cook their burger.  Giving me that option scored points for that burger.  What was even more special was the fact that they mentioned how the meat was ground in house, which is also a rarity in restaurants.

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As I picked up the burger, I took a few moments to take in what I was about to have.  As the grease dropped from the burger, it got the attention of another person at an adjoining table.  They exclaimed the burger looked good and I replied something about anticipation.  There was a sense of anticipation and that first bite was right on point.

The most prominent feature was the meat.  The other components were visible, but they didn’t really make the impact that I wanted, especially when it comes to the foie gras and bacon jam.  The foie gras had taste, but there’s a point where you don’t quite get the fuss of it all.  The jam, on the other hand, I couldn’t really identify and that was the thing I was the most disappointed about.

Don’t get me wrong, despite the fact that some elements didn’t live up, the overall burger met some of my basic expectations.  The cook on the meat was the main star and that’s what’s most important.  The size also allowed me to finish when I was still reeling from my first visit.

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Cannoli ($6)

This cannoli is filled with ricotta, mascarpone, marsala, lemon, and vanilla.

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With my lunch visit, I was about to try another dessert that I never had before.  I’ve had tastes, but never the whole thing.  Plus, when I found out that they were only a Sunday thing, that made it all the more appealing.

Eating a cannoli can be quite challenging.  First, I decided to crack the shell, which reminded me of Chinese food a bit.  Once that’s done, I used a spoon to scoop up the filling.  That filling was quite good.  It might not be my favorite chocolate, but it was quite interesting.

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Final Verdict

The small plate experience at two six {ate} was quite interesting.  Everything I tried, more or less, lived up to my expectations and there are still some items that I would have liked to have more room to try.  It was well worth the trip to Ottawa to try.

Two Six {Ate} on Urbanspoon

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