Dining Review: Restaurant Sinsemilla – Quebec City, Quebec – Canada
When I was narrowing down the list of restaurants for our visit, this one was number one on my list. With 4.9 stars on Google as a fairly new dining location, I knew we had to see what was up. We walked in for our reserved time, had our COVID vaccination cards checked, and seating in the intimate dining room. The interior was super fun.
Similar to other restaurants, the staff was minimal – the owner introduced himself and he would be the server and the chef was in the back and presented each of the dishes. The setup of the menu is larger than appetizer plates but smaller than entrée plates with the intention of sharing three plates between two people. The chef had suggested parings of three entrees in a meat, fish, and vegetarian focus options or the ability to mix and match dishes as well. All the dishes under the meat focus option spoke to us so we went all in.
Wine menu was super causal with the bottles displayed. Kevin wondered over to take a peek and we ended up going with a Chapeau Melon Rouge Jeremie Huchet per the owner’s recommendation.
Black pearl oysters: sauce ponzu / caviar
Wanting to prolong our meal, we snuck in an oyster order and these were phenomenal. We loved the presentation and the toppings really added such flavor to the oysters. Very fun, unique, and we enjoyed thoroughly.
Jelly Bell #4: flanc de porc / pork belly, oignons, pain perdu / fresh toast, Tete a Paineau
Chef described as his interpretation of French onion soup. A large cut of pork belly with fried onions and a piece of bread on top swimming in a decadent broth. What a fun vision from French onion soup! Everything was delicious and worked so well together. It was also just the right amount of salty which can be an issue with French onion soup. The pork belly was perfectly cooked and was still the star of the dish but the accompaniments really created a wonderful dish.
Wonder bread: Ris de veau / veal sweetbread, gnocchis, sauce bolognese, Clos des roches
Chef described as his interpretation of bolongese. We were excited to try this dish! The sweetbreads were pan fried and on top of a layer of mushroom Bolognese and then freshly made gnoochi on the bottom. The Bolognese was insanely flavorful – so well done! And the gnocchi was perfectly cooked as was the sweetbread. We loved this dish and our own compliant was not having a piece of bread to soak up all the juices – fingers may or may not have been used to clean the plate.
Duckfoot: canard / duck confit, cassoulet, courges / squash, foie gras
This was not the dish I was expecting to see – it looked like a deep fried meatball! The duckfoot name of the dish must have referred to the shape of the duck in this way! The duck was ground up and deep fried to have this amazing crust and was topped with foie gras mouse – just divine! And then the pureed squash with baked beans on top – wow this really was so delicious. All the flavors worked so well together and created such a delicious plate. This was our first dish and I already claimed if we were still hungry we would order another one of these it was so darn good.
Carrot cake: fromage de chevre / goat cheese, ras el hangout, clementines
Chef described as his interpretation of carrot cake. Kevin immediately devoured it. The goat cheese glaze was sweet and tangy, the cake itself was bursting with savory flavors and the perfect texture. Extremely well executed carrot cake!
Maple Leaf: churros de La Molette, sirop d’erable / maple syrup, pommes / apples
I asked for a recommendation and without hesitation our server said the Maple Leaf. As with all the dishes, it looked like a piece of art when it arrived and I was so happy I went with this dish. One bite and I was in love – was that foie gras??? Indeed, there was foie gras mouse. It reminded me of the dessert we had at Le Pigeon in Portland, Oregon. The sweetness of the apples and the crunch of the churro with this foie gras – honestly I was in heaven. Amazing dessert that I could have had five more of.
I have to say, this meal was fantastic. I would even go as far to say this won our favorite meal in Quebec during our stay. Every single dish was perfect as was every single ingredient put on the plate. The service was so personal – to have the chef come out and explain each dish? What a treat and something I cannot recall we have seen in quite some time. And the owner was so welcoming and personable – we learned they opened in 2019 right before the pandemic and survived which we – and all of Quebec – were grateful for! What I love is that when we return in the future, the menu will be completely different so while it will be new food, I am confident it will be the same level of excellent and creative dishes. If you are going to Quebec City, you must dine at Sinsemilla.