Saturday, July 28, 2007

Dining experience at Montreal's hip spot Rumi's

The first time I ever heard of Rumi's was from a local Montreal tv show called "Culture Shock". What intrigued me the most were the owners of this charming eatery, who are two brothers (Todd and Anthony) and who, at first glance, exuberate a joy of living life in the moment and of eating good food. When seeing them, I just feel like smiling. This Turkish/Persian-style restaurant is located at the heart of Montreal's hippest districts, where an endless number of exotic-cuisine restaurants, boutiques and interesting-looking apartments capture the attention of inquisitive local Montrealers and even tourists.

After hearing so much about Rumi's restaurant, a bunch of friends and I voted to go there for our annual "Lazer Blazer" reunion dinner last fall 2006. We had worked together for two years back in 1999 and had clicked right away. We remained very tight as a group, even if a few of us had gone separate ways, and felt like a family ever since. "Lazer Blazers" comes from the days when we were a bunch of engineers working for a telecommunications company, putting up fiber optics networks around the world. Having not been close, we never would have named ourselves such a silly name! I'm definitely digressing here... so, to get back to my point, Rumi's is an ideal place for a family or friend gathering. It is a jewel.

The first thing that impressed me, the minute I walked in, was the warmth and the vibrant colours of the decor. I had this sudden hunch that the food was going to be fantastic, I could just smell it. And it certainly was! The service is impeccable and amicable, especially for big groups. They really don't lose track of your orders. One of the highlights of our dining experience at Rumi's is the moment when Todd and Anthony, bearded and dressed in long tunics, greeted and welcomed everyone of us as soon as we were seated, which made us feel right at home. Without a doubt, THE highlight of the evening was the exquisite food.

And so this Friday, for one of our "Lazer Blazer" friends who was leaving for Singapore for a new and exciting work experience overseas, we wanted to grant his wish to have a last group meal with his friends at none other than Rumi's. We had ordered their fabulous Mezzes, which are appetizers consisting mainly of flavourful hummus, eggplant dips and roasted red bell peppers, all pleasantly savored with a hot naan bread.

A main dish we all fought over for the last piece was their "Koresh Épaule d'agneau braisé", mainly a braised lamb shoulder that just simply melted in my mouth as I relished it. A Koresh chicken with mushroom was also on the menu. The plate was emptied in no time, especially the rich creamy sauce which the chicken was slowly simmered in. There are no pictures of these wonderful dishes, as I thought that my description would already trigger a mouth-watering reaction and imagination to my readers.

And finally, one of the two men behind the extraordinaty delectable dishes is our sympathetic host Todd. Todd and Anthony seldom fail to please their guests.

Rumi's is a rare gem that I am most certain you will appreciate as much as I do.

Bon appétit!

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