Happy St. Patrick’s Day! As I think of all the people drinking green beer today, it makes me think of one of my favorite places to drink (and eat) in Edmonton. The Common is a gastro-lounge that is part lounge, part restaurant and part club and while a lot of multi-function places don’t always deliver on every front, The Common does, and in my opinion, there is absolutely nothing common about it! I remember when The Common was this tiny space in 124 Street, but I cannot rave enough about the wonderful space they have moved into on 109 Street (bonus – it’s closer to the LRT station and home). One of the major reasons I keep going back to The Common are the pop-up dinners they host every so often. I’ve been to nearly every single one and I love the creative and interesting food served in these one night only events.
The events are generally posted on The Common’s twitter (@thecommonyeg) and facebook page so it’s worth following them just to see when a pop-up event is coming up. Most of these events do tend to sell out – at least during the 6pm seatings, I am not so sure about the 9pm seatings – so hearing about it right away is key to getting a seat. Another thing I love about the events is you email in your reservation and then you pay at the end of the evening so you only have to pay once (and they take credit card too!).
While I wish I could dedicate an individual post for each meal (they were all pretty amazing), I just don’t have the time to write up each post (and to be honest, I can’t remember all the details of my reactions either) – so I am going to try something new and use a slideshow instead. Below you will find the photos of all the Common pop up meals I’ve attended (starting from the most recent) with the menus of each event following in text form.
Adjective Pop Up Menu (February 2013):
- Amuse Bouche… Crispy: Crispy Chicken Skin, Avocado, Clam Confit, Spiny Lettuce
- Course 1… Herbaceous: Spring Garden – Miso Soil, Asian Herbs, Potato Puree, Yogurt, Herbed Sweetbread
- Course 2… Buttery: Rabbit Liver Parfait, Butternut Squash, Scallop, Popcorn, Beurre Blanc
- Course 3… Succulent: Pork Sausage, Spaetzle, Asian Pear, Pea Shoots
- Final Course… Limpid: The Sea – Agar Jelly, Sugar Coral, Tapioca, Matcha Tea
Breakfast for Dinner Pop Up Menu (November 2012):
- Amuse Bouche: Fondant Potato, Hollandaise, Smoked Salmon
- Muesli with Black Sesame Yogurt, Elderberries, Honeycomb & Prunes
- Oeufs en Cocotte: Eggs, Truffle, Asparagus, Gruyere, Prosciutto
- Chicken & Waffles: Confit Chicken, Amaranth Bacon Waffle, Maple, Watermelon, Persimmon Marmalade
- Espresso Panna Cotta, Mini Doughnuts, Nutella
Korean Pop Up Menu (August 2012):
- Modeumjeon: Assorted Meat, Vegetable & Seafood Korean Pancakes
- Bibimbap: Beef, Vegetable & Red Chili Paste Rice Bowl
- Galbijim: Soy Braised Beef Short Ribs
- Gyung Dan & Maejakgwa: Crispy Rice Ball in Fruit Juice & Crispy Pastry with Honey
Occupy Common Pop Up Menu (May 2012) (This event featured chefs from 5 different restaurants):
- Couers de Poulet, Spicy Kale, Cheddar Grits (From Stu Chell – Ambers Brewing)
- Foie Gras/Bone Marrow Sausage, Scotch and Sweet Onion Jelly, House Made Baguette (From Andrew Cowan – 100 Bar & Kitchen)
- Braised Bulgogi Beef Cheeks with Quinoa Frite, Kimchi Salad, Black Tomato Gravy (From Nathan Saurette – Jacks Grill)
- Poblano Chile Stuffed with Chilorio, Raclette Cheese, Cinnamon Tomato Sauce (From Edgar Guiterrez – Tres Carnales)
- Papaya, Dark Chocolate Cannoli, Dragonfruit, Grapefruit Sorbet, Silverleaf (From Jesse Morrison-Gauthier – The Common)
So What Would Argenplath Pay?
Most of the pop up dinners tend to be around $35-$40+tax for the meal with drinks being extra, although the mojitos tend to run about $6.50 for a single and $12 for a double. Side note: The mojitos at The Common are beyond awesome – I highly recommend them!
As evidenced by the number of times I’ve gone to the pop ups (I missed one – Occupy Common Take 2 due to class – sad face), I obviously think this is worth going to. While occasionally there is a dish that is a miss for me, most of the dishes are delicious enough to keep me coming back again and again. I love the themes and one night only feeling to the dinners and I am generally comfortably full after all the courses, so I would definitely recommend giving the pop-up events at The Common a try (their regular menu is really good too)!