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Feb 14, 2010 08:07 AM

Pintxo - My Review

This is a summary of my experience at Pintxo.

Overall: It was good food and nicely balanced in terms of 'heaviness' that could accompany such a menu. I chose the a la carte option rather than the Degustacion.

Mixed Salad
(Mache, chorizo, rio tinto cheese, grape tomatoes, balsamic)
- A nice start to the meal. The chorizo was not overly salty and went well with the dressing. A simple pedestrian dish but done well.

White Asparagus wrapped in Serrano Ham
(A single slice of ham with a few cooked spears, all garnished with fried leeks)
This dish was a little too watery for my liking. As you cut into the 'wrap' liquid would spurt out the end result was a somewhat bland dish despite the salty ham and the onions. The asparagus was kind of lost.

Filet of Basque Cod with pepper and tomato sauce
(pan-seared filet w/ mustard mash and tomatoes)
The fish was amazing. Not much going on in terms of spicing but the crust was stupendously good. Minor slip up... instead of the pepper/tomato sauce, this came with mustard mashed potatoes; which turned me off...IMO the other sauce would have been better.

Scallops on Chorizo Tapenade
(seared sea scallop with sauteed chorizo, red roe?)
Just meh. I was expecting something more as this was a staff rec., but was underwhelmed. IMO, the scallop, though perfect in itself was overpowered by the chorizo and this was the only dish that left me without a balanced mouthfeel. It felt a little too rich.

Grilled Shrimp on Red Pepper Sauce
(2 jumbo shrimps in a peppery broth)
One of the stars of the evening. Perfect in all aspects

Lobster Tail w/ Fennel
(2 tail halves w/ fennel salad)
Another good dish. This was the special pintxo of the day and though double the price (disclosed later) kinda worth it.

Quintet of Grilled Vegetables
(neat stack of eggplant, red + green tomato, Artichoke and cucumber, grilled and topped with fried leeks in a balsamic sort of dressing)
I found this to be a welcome respite from the menu. I ordered it twice just to balance the palate some.

Braised Beef Cheek
(exactly what it says, served w/ mash potato)
Not my fave dish, but good. The cheek was succulent and melt in your tender. mash was meh

Mushrooms w/ duck confit
(hollowed out 'shroom, duck, confit)
I liked dish. The size is what made it IMO, any bigger and it would seem too much.

Thats all folks. I skipped dessert but they had a cheesecake, a nougat ice cream, chocolate creme brulee and one other I can't recall.
And now, I fell like a thanksgiving turkey and am gonna go for a walk before hitting up APDC tonight.


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  1. really??? no one has anything to say or add? done to death??

    4 Replies
    1. re: meatnveg

      So sorry no one responded to this. The regulars here have been a bit quiet, lately. Thanks for the report. I must admit I have nothing to add, though. Pintxo is, in my opinion, one the best places in town as far good food and QPR are concerned. It's also a board favourite that has been covered quite a bit.

      Please don't let the dead air keep you from writing further reports. The more people contribute, the more useful this board becomes.


      1. re: meatnveg

        Thank you for the thorough and detailed report, MnV. Sorry for the quiet, but seeing as you had lunch at Pintxo, followed by dinner at PDC, I assumed you were dead and no response was necessary.

        1. re: rcianci

          PDC wasn't too bad. I got the cochonailes starter and the lobster special. Accompanied by a nice white ($10). Left the foie and cochon for another day. I did get orielle des crises earlier though.

          1. re: meatnveg

            Love the cochonailes, especially the pickled tongue. If you don't mind my asking, how did they prepare the lobster?

      2. It's great report meatnveg!
        If you don't mind me asking - around how much did it come to per person?
        A group of us are thinking of heading there this week. I know the food'll be great, that's no concern, but being students (and all that entails), well, certain financial considerations are sadly necessary.

        4 Replies
        1. re: thebenc

          It's a fabulous report and I've been meaning to go there; thanks for posting it.
          Even if your post does not get immediate comments, it's probably been read a lot.
          I sometimes read and don't comment, for lack of time or tiredness.....

          1. re: thebenc

            I went alone sadly. I too am a student and finding fellow foodies is hard where I go to uni.

            My solo bill came to $70. Thats a lot I know, But I ordered:
            - 11 pintxos (incl. the special of the day)
            - 1 glass of wine

            I had originally planned to go to APDC and had eaten next to nothing all day so I was starving.

            If you are interested in knowing what a more average bill may be, watch for an update on this post...I am going to Pintxo again tonight for my last meal before heading home.

            hope that helps.
            P.S. for frugal choices I found a chinese bbq pork joint today (8/lb) that and a bag of shredded cabbage from IGA would be perfection on a good day.

            1. re: thebenc

              If you're on a budget, consider the table d'hôte: four pintxos (their choice) and your choice of main for $30. (the menu, with prices, is online)

              1. re: thebenc

                two of us split 9 pintxos, 1 main, 2 coffees, one dessert and 1/2 bottle of wine and it was exactly 100 plus tax and tip. The lunch special is very reasonable too. 2 pintxos and one main for 18 dollars. awesome value and great taste.

              2. Sounds like a nice evening. Too bad the scallops were a bust because scallops and chorizo are such an awesome combo. The other seafood sounds amazing though. I like how cod is having a bit of a comeback these days. All too often it's ruled out as being boring but there are some wonderful things you can do with it.

                1 Reply
                1. re: NickMontreal

                  Nick, it's interesting that you say that scallops and chorizo are such a great combo. I have had chorizo combined with scallops, with oysters, and with squid, and it has never worked for me as the strong taste of the chorizo overwhelmed the taste of the seafood in every case; I could not taste the seafood at all.

                2. Next time you go you have to try the Stuffed Fig, the Foie Gras Torchon and the Blood Pudding. Those are all of my favourites.

                  I love Pinxto. It's a great place. I have been many times and the consistency is pretty good.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: Speveo

                    Both foie gras pintxos are excellent (the other being with sherry vinegar reduction and lentils). I think the ravioli with duck stew (that and a roll is almost a satisfying lunch for $5!) and duo of crab and shrimp ($4) are probably my other favorites.

                    To the OP: It's unfortunate they didn't give you the tomato sauce with the cod - that's a big substitution!

                    1. re: afoodyear

                      In retrospect it's a good thing since it shows that they are placing importance on quality ingredients. They could have just as easily used a second grade salsa and I would never have known.
                      But, perhaps they should have been more forthcoming about it.

                  2. Hey guys I'm going to Pintxo next Friday. Thinking of getting 5 or 6 pintxos: Cod with tomato, Raviolis, foie gras and lentils. Which others would you guys recommend and which table d'hote mains are the best?

                    Thanks guys.

                    4 Replies
                    1. re: Evilbanana11

                      FYI, 5 or 6 pintxos plus a main is quite a bit if you're planning on ordering that for yourself :)

                      If you get the cod pintxo and love it, the fish of the day is usually a larger version of that and always a good option. The beef cheek and lamb shank would be my choice if you didn't go for that, though the potatoes that come with them are sort of hit or miss unfortunately.

                      In addition to the ravioli, cod and foie gras with lentils, my 3 other preferences from the menu would probably be the duo of crab and shrimp, the stuffed fig, and mushrooms with escargot and parsley oil. My wife's favorite is the strawberry and bell pepper gazpacho :)

                      1. re: afoodyear

                        Thanks for all the suggestions. BTW in regards to the mains, i was just asking for a friend :D, I myself am going for the pintxos .

                        1. re: Evilbanana11

                          The beef cheeks rock. Also, if you are fan of blood pudding, get the morcilla. It is very special. But just to warn you, they have a sweet element to them, so if you don't like sweet, not as good a choice. and both the Morcilla and beef cheeks are very rich dishes.

                          For those who like white wine, don't forget to get a glass or bottle of the Txacoli, which goes very well with the seafood tapas. very light and refreshing, and really easy to drink very quickly! It's a great match with the food, and Txacoli is a very hard to find wine, especially here in Montreal. It is a rare experience. Plus, it is not expensive! Win- win.