Like every brilliant idea of mine, it’s not really mine, but copied from a girlfriend. Christmastime is so busy, it’s important to schedule pauses. One friend makes a point to get gussied up and meets her partner at a swish restaurant every December.
It’s been awhile since our last date night, so I nicked my girlfriend’s idea and headed off to Vintage Chophouse with the hubs earlier this week.
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Intimate and classy, Vintage Chophouse sports a speakeasy vibe with exposed brick walls, deep booths and romantic lighting. It’s old school, but updated.
Crisp, white linen napkins are folded into a cute tuxedo shape and the walls of our booth were blanketed with chocolate velvet, a nod to the classic steak house red carpet wall treatment of yesteryear.
For appies, we decided to splurge. First up was a massive crab cake, easily shareable with chunks of crab you can easily spot. It didn’t disappoint in the way many do, likely because it’s oven roasted, not breaded nor deep fried.
For our second app we went with beef tartare. Now I love my beef raw, especially when it’s classically served with a fresh egg yolk. Decadent and carnivore-ish, beef tartare tastes like victory (and obviously brings out the cavewoman in me).
For mains, it’s gotta be steak. I mean, how can you not when the waiter, sporting a butcher’s jacket, trots out with a massive cutting board brimming with huge hunks of beef? So many amazing cuts, so little room in my stomach.
Wagyu Beef Calgary
I was tempted to go with the wagyu beef (raised in nearby Brant by my Grade 10 boyfriend’s family!!). You can find this Brant Lake wagry beef at pretty much any reputable steakhouse in Calgary. It’s super tasty and everything you want in a steak. But for us, on this night, the rib eye was a better sharing option, so that’s what we went with.
Vintage Steakhouse Calgary
I’m glad we went with the ribeye to share. Deliciously charred on the outside and sprinkled with fat flakes of salt, our steak was perfectly bloody on the inside. It proved that no matter what type of beef you order from a proper steakhouse like Vintage in Calgary, they’re going to do a smashing job.
Accompanied by asparagus (which looked good, but had to be ignored since it was too healthy) and savoury scalloped potatoes, it was all I could do not to lick the plate.
Truthfully, I haven’t had steak this good in a long time. We fought over the last piece, but I graciously conceded to The Huz since there was no way I was leaving without dessert.
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During our meal I thought we’d sort out important Christmas issues: who’s buying what, if I make trifle will anyone eat it, you’re sending cards to your relatives, right?
But it just didn’t evolve that way and I didn’t want our lovely evening marred by shop talk. So we flitted around topics, such as heli-skiing vs cat-skiing and would we sink the money into sending Buddy to puppy physio? (Most definitely yes!)
Baked Alaska in Calgary
There are some fabulous dessert options, but it’s rare to find Baked Alaska on a menu in Calgary. So when I see it, I go for it, no matter how full I am.
Our Baked Alaska arrived and it was a sight to behold. The outer meringue whipped to marshmallow-like consistency was a beautiful contrast to the cool, almost tart ice cream underneath.
But damn it, I was just too full to do it justice. Two bites and I was done, ready to be rolled out of the resto.
The food and ambiance were spot on, and our waiter was the icing on the cake. No squatting down to be at your eye level, no “how ya doin’ tonight?” like they want to be your best friend.
No, these dudes interestingly donning butcher’s coats mean business. Polite, efficient and knowledgable, that’s all I ask for in a waiter. Fortunately that’s what we got, thank god or I would’ve annoyed the pants off of Dan with my whinging.
Do you pencil in downtime before the holidays hit? Let me know in the comment section below.
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