Taking over the old Suede Lounge, One One Eight opened up on (you guessed it!) 118 St & Jasper. With a four-day long grand opening last week, I was expecting big things. With the biggest DJs in Edmonton lined up for their night scene, you could tell this might be the new bar to go to. Joe and I went right after work, this being our first stop of the night before getting our lobster dinner special at Earl’s. Although their biggest seller is the extensive beer menu, I was looking forward to their food menu!
Although promoted as a grand opening, it seemed more like a soft opening to me. I wouldn’t call this a full on review, but more of a sneak peek! We went on the Thursday night and the benches nearby were just drying up from a fresh coat of varnish. They did get their front shop sign by the third night though, right on time to kick off the weekend. Inside, two main walls are featured: the bar and a graffiti wall. I wasn’t able to photograph the bar because that night’s menu was still being written on the blackboard and it looked like they were rearranging their drinks but I was able to get one of the graffiti wall. The wall was designed to offer a legal area for local graffiti artists to showcase their work, which is pretty sweet. I wonder how often they’ll change it up though. It’s always nice to see local talent! With plenty of seating, I can imagine this place doing well once they’re 100% complete.
Like I said, their drinks menu is extensive. At least 3 pages of beer and a couple more for specialty drinks. If I wasn’t driving, my choice would have been this season’s feature: the Phoenix Chan. Looked enticing! The food menu looked impressive for what I thought was going to be standard pub food. Although only ten dishes were showcased that night, they happened to be the ones I wanted to try!
The fried chicken sandwich came out first. This was our favorite! Not sure what they used as the batter but whoa, was it CRISPY. Served on a bun with tomatillo salsa and a chili lime aioli, it had the perfect amount of seasoning. The fries that came with the dish, however, lacked in any type of seasoning! I appreciated that they appeared to be fresh-cut potato wedges, but some sort of salt needs to be sprinkled on. Lately I’ve seen a lot more homemade ketchups complimenting fries in other menus, so it would be nice if they upped the ante by giving that a go instead of regular ketchup.
Our second dish was the bulgogi sliders: marinated beef, kim chi, sriracha aioli, and tempura frites. I wasn’t the biggest fan of this dish, mostly because the kim chi overwhelmed any other flavor that could have been showcased. I tried the beef by itself and it was well marinated, slightly sweet, as bulgogi should be. Joe, as you might know from earlier posts, has a love affair with sriracha every so often. Disappointed, neither of us could even taste the sriracha aioli. And I’m not sure if it was because of the soft opening or not, but I don’t recall tempura frites in the dish or anywhere near it. The dish is a fairly good portion though and great for sharing.
Overall, I don’t have enough dishes to judge One One Eight. A hit and a miss dish to me means that I’ll have to return and try again! With such a good location and a variety of drinks though, I don’t doubt that I’ll be back soon. Great addition to the Oliver area!One One Eight
11806 Jasper Ave
(780) 482-0707 Twitter: @1ONEEIGHT