Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Oliver and Bonacini: Pleasing to the Eye and the Appetite

Red Snapper special
A few weeks ago, my family was getting together for one last reunion before my parents set off to Mexico. We needed to find an accessible location during Friday evening rush hour for people coming from Milton, Oakville, Toronto and Burlington both by car and by train. I suggested the new Oliver and Bonacini at Oakville Place.

Conveniently located less than a five minute drive from the Oakville GO Station, this venue turned out to be the ideal choice for our last supper. I always get a bit nervous choosing restaurants for my family, because my parents are both ‘foodies’ who cook well and enjoy fine dining. So it was nice to impress them with this choice – a restaurant that is both pleasing to the appetite and not too heavy on the wallet.

Although they have a mixed repertoire of food on the menu, it is primarily Italian, and they do their food very well. Most of us opted for seafood: tender scallops with artichoke and fresh parmesan, grilled calamari in a lemon brown butter sauce, and a scrumptious looking portion of battered fish and chips. The special of the evening was a red snapper with jerk roasted potatoes, wilted spinach, pineapple salsa, and a plantain that served both decoratively and as an accent flavour to the rest of the dish.

The service is also worth mentioning; our waitress was professional and charming, and attentive to our sometimes unique requests. And for those who are interested in the aesthetics and overall atmosphere of a restaurant, this gets top rating. In an industry where the trend has become low lighting and dark furniture (think Milestones or Moxie’s’ west coast influences), Oliver and Bonacini comes as a refreshing surprise. There are clean lines in white and silver, with darker accents in the seating areas. Birch and greenery dot the landscape, which is decorated with images of food and the environment it comes from. You can see part of the kitchen from the dining area: a high marble counter with low lighting in white and silver, and decorated with preserves and other food items, as well as recipe books in the shelves along the front.

The atmosphere was a bit quiet for a Friday night, but perhaps it is because they are still building a reputation. I hope this recommendation brings them the busy nights they deserve!

1 comment:

  1. Thanks Sophie for a fabulous reminder of our dinner together. The food was simply delicious and well presented.Mom.