Meals for $25 or less: Garlics has a good flavour for a higher price

This week I decided to check out one of my old favourite restaurants that I haven't been to in a while: Garlics of London. A fellow culinarian and I travelled down Richmond Row and found the familiar restaurant in its spot beside the Grand Theatre. The outside of Garlics creates a tempting vision for those passing by with giant front windows allowing a glimpse of a few tables and the delicious looking food on them. The interior is very dimly lit, perfect lighting for a romantic evening, lined with brick walls and artwork. Our server was very friendly and professional, taking our coats for us as we sat down at our table. She was quick to bring us water and some lovely breads - rosemary foccaccia and a molasses bread — along with a roasted garlic and chive butter. The bread was fabulously made and the butter really jazzed things up.


For my main dish, I ordered handmade tagliatelle pasta with Ontario chicken mixed with shitake mushrooms, roasted red peppers, parmesan, snap peas and chili oil. The pasta was absolutely divine, the roasted peppers melted in your mouth and the parmasean added a sharper bite that was just what the dish needed. Contrary to the name of the restaurant, I didn't find this dish overpowering with garlic. The portion size was perfect as well. I also truly enjoyed the fact that many other items on Garlics' menu promotes local ingredients, making sure to list where some of the ingredients came from.

Unfortunately, the whole dish came to $21 plus tax, making it impossible to get a drink or dessert without surpassing my $25 budget. The dessert menu looked amazing, expensive also, but amazing. The must-try item on the dessert menu would have to be the garlic ice cream. I was not able to get it this time, but I remember it being surprisingly sweet, like butterscotch with a hint of earthy flavour to it.

Overall I had a very pleasant time at Garlics of London. It would make a wonderful date spot for anyone trying to make an impression as long as they were willing to fork out the cash to do so. I would not recommend this restaurant for a student on a tight budget, or for anyone who doesn't like garlic. If you are looking to spend $50 or more on a nice meal with quality ingredients, Garlics is for you.