I’m not the biggest meat eater. A disclaimer is always a nice start. And I’ve never been to Texas. In fact, you can say I’m a BBQ virgin on the grand scale of things. But with summer rolling around the corner, I know that some of you are itching to start up the grill and smoke a thing or two. Why not get some inspiration from Edmonton’s newest restaurant, MEAT? That’s what I did last night at their grand opening, and I most definitely wasn’t the only one! Their first customers were vegetarians!
Sister and neighbor restaurant to the Next Act Pub, (is this a thing now? Corso 32 + Bar Bricco) MEAT has had its fair share of struggles opening. But last week they announced their opening date and I’m always a fan of something new in Edmonton.
And like I said, I wasn’t the only one. Nice work Edmonton! Glad to see everybody out and walking around Whyte Ave, passersby curiously looking into the newly revealed restaurant. The room was fully seated so we took up residence at the bar, which was actually a pretty view in itself.
The bar is beautiful, dark navy blue tiling to accentuate the blue veins in the countertop (which Joe fell in love with). Old country-style cabinetry with lovely matching taps to boot. The bar is fully stocked with bourbon and whiskey if that’s your kind of drink, and I was pleased to see local beers prominently written. Joe ordered the Alley Kat Main Squeeze, which is actually one of the few beers I enjoy. Who doesn’t like grapefruit beer?!
My drink for the night was the Lynchburg Lemonade, made with lemon cordial, Triple Sec, and soda. It won out over the “Meat Caesar” more so because I didn’t think my body could handle more meat in the meal. Can’t have meat in my drink, you know? Plus it was hot yesterday and a lemonade cocktail sounded more refreshing!
Their menu is available on the website but here’s the options. That night they were also offering a sampler platter, enough to feed four people, $40. They weren’t able to do just half a platter for two and we weren’t particularly keen on having leftovers for the next few days before heading out for the long weekend either. I knew I should have brought people with us! Piece of advice: come with a group of big eaters. You know, so you can try everything.
The pickles came out first, $1 each. Housemade and delicious! Crunchy and juicy, just the way I like them.
The rest of the food came out simply on a tray, and butcher paper as did everybody else’s orders. Simple and promoting the get-in-there! style of eating. I like. Obviously it would be more impressive if I had tons and tons of meat on it but in case you didn’t know, I’m a small person. I really wish I could eat more, I do. Joe wanted the beef brisket and the apple glazed smoked chicken. I threw in the Andouille sausage for good measure. Somehow it didn’t look like much in comparison to what other tables around us were ordering but boy… you should see the leftovers I brought home. MEAT for lunch!
You can’t do meat without sides. Well you could, but that’s not as fun. The mac and cheese was screaming at me, and coleslaw served as veggies. The couple next to me had a sandwich with garlic fries which tempted me to throw in the fries too. Another piece of advice: if you’re trying to lose weight or have little self-control, best not to come here. But remember! Food tastes better than skinny feels. I am full of great advice today.
Everything was deeeeelicious. The beef brisket was well done, fatty bits on the side; the apple glazed smoked chicken was slightly sweet, crispy skinned, although questionable if it should jump to the dark (dry) side; the Andouille sausage, my favourite, oozing out flavor with every bite. For sides: the garlic fries were super crispy and equally addicting; the macaroni, covered in a smooth and creamy cheese sauce; the coleslaw was a tad under dressed for my taste, although totally understandable to provide a lighter bite in between everything else.
I’d like to point out that alongside well cooked meats and sides all around (when’s the last time that happened for you?), were four housemade sauces to accommodate. My favorite? The cherry and bourbon BBQ sauces. O-M-G. I hope they start selling it by the jar. I’d be the first in line. Joe liked ketchup with his fries as did other tables around us I noticed, but why? Why?! I dipped mine in the heavenly sauces. My only qualm: the spicy bottle was the most used up and it took a little bit more effort to get to. Such cute bottles but they’ll have to keep them filled to make it easier for diners!
Our server gave us a box to pack ourselves, not an easy feat when you’ve got a whole tray of food at a full bar! But I squeezed it all in there without bumping elbows. Then I ordered dessert, the next obvious thing to do. Pecan pie was recommended to us, the best our server has ever tried. I’d have to agree with her on that note! For those who don’t like sweet desserts, perhaps hold on the caramel sauce. But man, did this hit the spot. Next time I want to try the ice cream floats. Or even the chocolate bacon sundae. Mmm, bacon.
Congratulations to MEAT on their successful grand opening! It was a pleasure “meat”-ing you, har har! No, but in all seriousness, they’ve got some good stuff. It was clear the servers were busy but I thought we were looked after quite nicely at the bar. Ours was knowledgeable about the menu and answered any questions I had. The room has plenty of tables (as seen on their website) and seemed to have a high turnover, lots of people walking in and out when we arrived. They don’t take reservations and I will assume everybody knows to park in the residential areas behind Whyte Avenue and go for a stroll to get to MEAT. A separate entryway was available I noticed, an indication of a patio in the future perhaps? Let’s hope so. Then I can wave to the folks at Next Act! Check out MEAT and get your BBQ on! Make sure you get the garlic fries. Oh and the sauces. Ohhh… the sauces.MEAT
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8216 – 104 St