CK and I took advantage of the nice weather this weekend, and spent most of our time wandering and eating in Downtown Ottawa. We finally got a chance to stop in at Stephen Beckta's Play Food & Wine, and had a nice light lunch there.
Play is more of a small plates & wine place, and the whole point is to share, share, share. On the weekends between 11:00am - 2:00pm, a brunch menu is offered. We weren't really in the mood for breakfast food, so we started with 2 dishes, and went from there.
We started with a Beau's onion soup, and the Moroccan lamb panini.
Beau's onion soup was served with a rarebit crouton. This onion soup should not be mistaken for French onion soup. Beau's version is quite sweet, and is flavored with a lot of rosemary. I didn't care for this soup, and found it too sweet. The rosemary was also a bit too overpowering.
The Moroccan lamb panini was served with raita and harissa onions. Raita is a yogurt based dip that is seasoned with coriander, mint, and cumin. I really liked this dish, and it was one of the more filling ones.
While eating the panini, we decided to order a plate of cheese.
Our friendly waiter helped us with our selection, and we finally decided on the soft Chaumes cow cheese, the Thunder Oak 3-year aged Gouda, and the ash covered Le Cendrillon goat cheese. Our cheese was absolutely amazing, and it was well worth the money! Each cheese was so different (and delicious) that it was hard to pick a favorite. If you're not interested in coming to Play for their food, I would at least consider coming for their wine and cheese! I didn't try any of their wines, but they do have an extensive wine list.
CK and I needed something healthy in our bodies, so we ordered the market greens. The vinaigrette served with the greens was tasty.
I love dulce de leche, so when I saw the bread pudding with dulce de leche x 2 on the menu, I didn't think twice. This tasted amazing and CK and I still talk about it. It was a creamy bread pudding drizzled with dulce de leche, with a scoop of dulce de leche gelato, from Pure Gelato, on top. Although this dessert was great, I'm not sure if it was real 'dulce de leche' drizzled on top of the bread pudding. Dulce de leche is normally quite thick, and this stuff was runny, and did not look milk based.
Overall, we thought the food was good, and it was a fun and casual place to eat. I especially liked their cheeses, and loved the sharing aspect. The atmosphere was warm and inviting; however, this is not a place that will fill you up unless you want to spend a bit more.
Play Food & Wine
1 York Street
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Lunch and Dinner Menu