EATS: The Aberdeen Tavern

Hello everyone! There are so many great restaurants in Hamilton and I am having the best time discovering them with the HF. One of the more well-known establishments in town is The Aberdeen Tavern (I’ve already written about their newer little brother, The French.) Located at Aberdeen and Dundurn, The Aberdeen Tavern used to be a bank way back when (you can still see the vault in the dining room) – a tidbit which our server told us when we went for brunch a couple of months back. Apparently it was constantly burglarized because of its proximity to the highway. Anyway, we had heard their brunch was one of the best experiences in town so we obviously had to try it out. We started off with their freshly baked scones (sweet strawberry and lime for me, savoury goat cheese and pepper for him) along with coffee and tea. I ordered the Smoked Salmon Rosti and the eggs were exactly as described on the menu – super soft. The potato rosti was crispy and everything was accented nicely with the richness of cream cheese while still maintaining a bit of brightness with the capers.The HF ordered the Mississippi Benny which had pulled pork AND smoked andouille. The smoked mustard hollandaise sauce was indulgently rich and delicious (but definitely less buttery than The French – which isn’t a bad thing!) Very hearty with a variety of complementary flavours.

We knew eventually we would have to come back to try their dinner options, so when the HF suggested we come here last Friday night, I couldn’t say no. We managed to squeeze in before a bunch of larger parties and amidst a busy night of reservations. We started off with the Fried Calamari which was served with a jalapeno and lemon crema. The perfect amount of batter accented the calamari and it was not rubbery at all (a very common occurrence at many other restaurants.)
Not gonna lie – I ordered this mainly because I saw it on their Instagram feed a couple of days before, but I opted for the Seared Sea Scallops. Served with a truffle and mushroom risotto with confit leeks and bacon – this dish was rich and very savoury. Bursting with robust flavours and a very generous portion of the risotto, the scallops still stood out.The HF ordered the Braised Beef, which I actually ended up preferring and will order when we come back. Insanely tender braised beef cheek that literally was falling apart in the best way possible, a super smooth carrot and horseradish puree, and a wonderful take on coleslaw made with celery root. This dish is a total gem and I am literally salivating as I reminisce. I had the rest of my risotto packed up as I wanted to try out their weekend dessert feature (which I had also seen on their IG earlier that day) which was a Cornbread Strawberry Shortcake (!) Now anyone who knows me knows that although I love all food, I definitely have a major sweet tooth. Corn bread is also one of my favourite foods ever so this was very intriguing. Macerated strawberries in Galliano and chantilly cream were an elevated take on a classic combo, but it was the balsamic reduction which was a surprise. It sounds like it would be odd, but it was SO DELICIOUS. The tartness from the balsamic balanced the sweetness of the rest of the dish. This is one of the best desserts I’d ever had.Overall, I am in LOVE with The Aberdeen Tavern. I can’t wait to come back for brunch as well as dinner (that beef cheek tho.) I would highly recommend this to anyone who wants an elevated yet casual dining experience as well as impeccable food and service. (Shoutouts to our awesome waitress last Friday night; I can’t remember her name but she totally sounded like Melissa McCarthy!)

The Aberdeen Tavern is located at 432 Aberdeen Avenue in Hamilton. You can check them out online at http://theaberdeen.ca, and be sure to follow them on Twitter and Instagram at @AberdeenTavern.

Have you ever been to The Aberdeen Tavern? Do you have any Hamilton restaurant recommendations? Let me know in the comments! Thanks so much for stopping by!

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