Not always a foodie, I have been asked what food memories I carry from my university days (college days for our American readers). Well, there were “Buffy” nights when a group of us would crowd into a friend’s dorm room living room, eat dinner, and watch a young Sarah Michelle Gellar kick vampire butt (before vampires “shimmered” or courted girls named Bella that is…). Every month someone would spend the time between their last lecture, lab, or seminar session of the day and Buffy: The Vampire Slayer’s start, preparing ethnic eats for the others. There were dumplings nights. One evening I cooked a Bolognese lasagna, my first time ever working with ricotta.
There was my first poutine from a fry shack across from Lamoureux Hall on Jean-Jacques Lussiers. The shack would catch fire and burn to the ground in years to come. There were the smoked meat sandwiches from Nate’s Deli on Rideau Street, which re-opened on Merivale Road recently (1545).
There were the chicken shawarma platters from Shawarma Palace. There were the poutine-ized pub chips from the Royal Oak. There were the two egg breakfast specials from Fathers and Sons.
But there wasn’t the breakfast sandwiches from the Sandy Hill Lounge and Grill (SHL&G), a relatively new eatery located a block or two beyond the streets of predominantly student housing.
There weren’t the “Chuck Norris” shots on Jack Daniels Road. There wasn’t the home-style food that is two steps removed from both the classic diner and higher end gastro-pub.
Eating at the Sandy Hill Lounge and Grill reminded me a lot of eating at the Manx on Elgin (370), just with more sunlight. Both serve the same honest food, made from scratch and with care. Both are licensed to serve alcohol. Both choose to have locally brewed beers on tap.
[Breakfast Kaiser ($8.25): Egg, Double House-Roasted Ham, Cheddar on a Grilled Kaiser Roll, served with Home Fries and House-made Ketchup]
Thank you Tracey (@thelemonkitchen) for introducing this great place to me and Jenn! We will surely return for Wing Night and to try the burger, which we hear so much about.
Sandy Hill Lounge & Grill
321 Somerset Street E.