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Dec 10, 2008 11:34 AM

Flatiron - Calgary

Tried a new place at the busy corner of 32 ave and Barlow. It may be a chain but we've never heard of it before.

Glitzy, red lit reception desk, shiny black marble all over and one of those long thin gas fireplaces behind glass.

I had the crispy mushroom risotto balls (an app but I was told they were large) which turned out to be 3 balls the size of tennis balls (or maybe smaller) on a red sauce (red pepper? not strong enough flavor to tell). They were good, not overly mushroomy and maybe a little small for lunch especially compared to the hamburgers. Since they were the same price I did kind of expect they would be equivalent to the burgers but my own fault as I knew they were meant as an appy.

The others had burgers, one with a caesar salad (good) and the other with fries (good, not great). All were around $12 at lunch.

The service was friendly, prompt and attentive. Our server was familiar with the menu which is something since the place is pretty new.

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  1. michael noble was the consultant chef for this place. it's not a chain, the fellows that own it have another restaurant in fort mac, this is their second.

    1. Sounds like good stick-to-your-ribs fare- did this place replace another place or is it brand new?

      3 Replies
      1. re: John Manzo

        My husband says there was an Asian restuarant there. Oriental Phoenix? I think that's what the name was.

        1. re: sharonanne

          No great loss there. There are so, so many better Viet places than OP.

        2. re: John Manzo

          yes, it was oriental phoenix - they we're really that old either but...

          1. re: cancowboy

            Thanks for the link. I've been curious about this place ever since the ad blitz on am660. I wonder if "Cheeze" platter was a typo or meant to be playful? :)

            1. re: maplesugar

              their employment ads on the radio were unfortunate - very "cheezy" :)

          2. i was at the opening party- the risotto balls were ok, their grilled cheese seemed ok, i wasn't really overly impressed with what they served at the party -there is a group of us going for lunch friday so we'll get a true meal- i'll report back.

            3 Replies
            1. re: pants

              so we went for lunch - the food was pretty good - not great, but good. those that had the arctic char said it was really good and the vegetables with it were really good too. a couple of us had the short rib pasta, the meat was quite good, it was a nice pasta - i don't like to order pasta out very often but if it's a different style then i like to figure out how to make it myself...
              another dish on the table was the prawns w/rice noodles, it was well received but the noodles were too short and difficult to eat(not a big deal but a comment none the less).
              generally people were happy, our server wasn't great, she wasn't very attentive and never did pour the wine, after the first glass (served by someone else) we had to pour it ourselves. I hate that, it's a pet peeve in restaurants.

              they need to use the dimmers on the lights, half the lights are meant to be on during cleaning only and the rest could easily be dimmed by at least half. way too bright in there, even for lunch service.

              i think they'll do fairly well, i'm sure it's a welcome change of menu in the neighbourhood from earl's, joey's and cactus.

              1. re: pants

                Guess we got the good sever. hehe

                The lights were almost too low when we were there so maybe they're still working it out. I had the feeling we were walking into a gloomy bar so quite different than what you experienced.

                I still say the Afghan place is the best in that area just because of the ravioli like dumpling things.

                1. re: sharonanne

                  Went there last night with a group of friends, service was pretty good and the room is very nice. I wasn't too impressed with the meal though.

                  Didn't care for the appies we ordered:

                  Risotto Balls - were a bit greasy and I didn't like the cheese served with it

                  Tomato Stack - this was a strange one as I found it to have a very meaty (lamb) flavour.I normally like lamb, but this was an unpleasant surprise. They may have been left under the broiler to long to warm the cheese as the tomatoes were a bit mushy as well

                  Soya Garlic Wings - interesting idea braising the wings, but way too salty couldn't taste any garlic.

                  Had the Sirloin as a main and it was overcooked (I had asked for med-rare) and tough. I did like the sides though (mixed veg and mashed potatos). One other in the group had the sirloin as well and he liked it (although he usually orders his well done anyway)

                  My wife had the Thai Prawn and Noodles, I tried a bit and it was quite tasty (the prawns were cooked nicely) - it was lacking salt though, easily remedied and better then being over salted.

                  The other couple we were with ordered the Ultimate Ham and Cheese and Bison Shortrib Pasta. They both looked very good, and they both seemed to like their choices. I did sneak a few of the fries that came with the ham and cheese. One of the better shoestring fries I have had.

                  We also shared a few desserts:

                  Brownie Ganache Slice: this was the hilight of the night, the brownie was amazing! Tasted like it was just baked.

                  Creme Brulee: It was ok, but it was a bit too thick

                  One in our group also had the spiked Cream Soda Float, I didn't try it, but he really enjoyed it.

            2. My husband and I have been to Flatiron three times now for dinner, and each time our meal was delicious. I've tried the Artic Char, the pasta with walnuts and the flatiron steak. The steak was one of the tastiest steaks I've had in a long time. My husband has ordered the hamburger twice which he really liked. The fries are thin and crispy and probably the best we've had in Calgary. The service has always been good and the decor is a welcome change from the many chain restaurants in the area.