FEATURE: The Backdrop & Eliana Jay
Last week I was invited to attend one of Ottawa's fastest rising vocal stars' first solo gig. I had however never heard of the venue... The Backdrop. This gem nestled on Metcalfe St, in the heart of downtown Ottawa was a perfect setting. A very cool vibe inside, the stage right in the middle of the restaurant, so there's no bad seat in the house, and a menu I NEEDED to try!
The Backdrop is a cozy spot, with a small kitchen, but they are pumping out some huge flavours, and elevating bar food for their guests! For example, why do a chicken wing, when you can do a duck wing! And these are unreal. As you can see from the picture above, they are beautifully cooked and have a great amount of meat on them. They do have a bit of an asian flavour profile to them, which really compliments the meat nicely, and they are fall off the bone tender.
And as amazing as the duck wings were, the rest of the food that kept coming out of the kitchen continued to leave me, and the rest of the guests at the show, in awe at their bursts of on point flavours and nice presentation. From a simple order of fries, elevated with herbs and cheese of course, to the shrimp salad, fish cakes or.. wait for it... wild boar ragu poutine with jalapenos and curds, the quality of the food being served was very high. Speaking with Jason, one of the kitchen masterminds, he shared that the Backdrop sources as much of their meat and produce from local suppliers as possible, and that all of the great food coming out of the kitchen is made in house. No frozen fish cakes here folks!
Ever been to one of those restaurants or bars where they have awesome drinks but average food, or vice versa? The Backdrop is the furthest thing from it! They carry a range of local craft beers, and feature rotating taps as well, just to keep things interesting. But the coolest part of the bar, is the genius behind it, Alex MacKinnon! When he was hired, he got rid of all the pre-made syrups and liquors, the marachino cherries, and started making it all himself! Yup, he makes homemade Creme de Cacao.... And has a barrel sitting on the bar which he uses to age cocktail creations! The Old Fashioned he made for me was great, and looking at their cocktail menu, it would be fun to work my way down the list some night, because there are some delicious sounding creations on it... anyone up for it??
As I mentioned above, the whole reason I got to discover the Backdrop, was because Eliana Jay was putting on a show! The vocals on this young lady are out of this world with a crazy range! Be sure to follow her instagram to see where you can catch her next!
Thanks to Eliana Jay and the Backdrop for a fantastic evening of entertainment, drinks and food! I had a great time and can't wait for the next one!
You can check out the Backdrop here to see all the exciting events they have coming up, and their new menu!
- The Kid