Rogue Kitchen & Wetbar is a fairly new restaurant that has opened in the heart of Gastown, in the prime location of Waterfront Station. It is a funky restaurant that definitely makes a powerful statement with its eye-catching light fixtures & glowing walls. Disappointingly however, the food was painfully average and was not even close to supporting the `beyond ordinary experience` this restaurant was trying to achieve.
Here is a taste of what I got to try.
1. First was the Albacore Tuna Tataki ; sushi grade tuna, mango miso coulis, shiso & citrus soy marinade; edamame salad $13.49
When I was first going over the menu the description of the Tuna Tataki was what had first drawn me in. It was a typical restaurants`overly exaggerated description-however, the mango miso coulis & shiso marinade got me extremely excited and I knew I had to try it.
The presentation was beautiful. If only it had tasted as good as it had looked. The tuna was perfectly cooked, however, there was way way way too much edamame! After a few bites-all the once beautiful flavor combinations in my mouth had morphed into the dominant flavor of edamame and only edamame.
The mango miso coulis was OK, it was delicate as it should have been- but made no statement in the dish what so ever. Overall for $13.49, I was disappointed.
2. The next appetizer I tried was the Sushi Bombs 2.0; tempura prawn, albacore tuna, tobiko, wasabi, sriracha & sesame seeds; chased with wasabi soy $9.99
OK- these were bomb! I not only loved the presentation of this dish but also the overall idea behind it. They were playful, funky & had great flavor combinations. I mostly enjoyed the wasabi soy dressing that you got to release yourself from the pipetter.
This dish was also extremely fair priced- at only $9.99. I would definitely recommend this.
3. I next got to try the main dishes. The first being the Coconut poached Chicken Salad ; snap peas, red & yellow peppers, mango, mixed greens, cashews, thin asian noodles, sesame soy dressing $14.99
I`m not sure where to begin with this dish. It had good intentions, I suppose. There was nothing bad about this dish but there was also nothing good about it either. There was just too much going on. From mango to snap peas, to bland cashews. It just seemed as though they threw any ingredient close to hand in a dish and then gave it a fancy subtitle. I also could barely taste the coconut in this coconut chicken salad.
The dressing was a dominant sesame soy dressing and could have been the reason I couldn’t taste the coconut. I also swear on my
sisters goldfish’s life that the sesame dressing was the store bought President Choice Asian Sesame Dressing which I had previously bought from superstore for $1.99. It tasted to a grain of salt- identical. Nonetheless, this salad was an overpriced disaster but if it means anything-it did have potential.
4. The last dish I got to try was the Grilled bacon & Three Cheese Sandwich; back bacon, roasted tomatoes, yellow cheddar, swiss & aged white cheddar on fresh sourdough 12.99
Dear god. They call it the adult version of a grilled cheese- but really it had just tasted like some cheese and ham slabbed between two pieces of bread. To be fair, I did enjoy the sourdough bread -it was fresh. However, I am still in awe as to how a meal such as this can be offered on a menu and then charged for almost $13!!
I could have easily made this meal at home with my two eyes closed.
Overall, this restaurant does have potential. Our server was polite, patient & experienced. However, the food was extremely disappointing. The whole point behind dining out is to experience something that your own home can`t offer- from the food to the ambiance. All the dishes I had tried, with the exception of the sushi bombs, I could have easily made at home myself. As a result, I would only recommend this place for an after work drink or cocktail get together. It had a convenient location & wonderful ambiance- which in the long run may be the only reason this restaurant will be able to stay open.