Of boundaries and off-sides, Aufside has it all. Literally. I mean, there’s actually a full-size practice net that separates the restaurant from the mall-side entrance…Its so in-your-face that for a second I thought I was at the wrong place or something, when I got there. Thank God for the signs that scream “Aufside, this side ->”; if not for these I probably would’ve doubled back and taken some detour.
Anywho, so once inside, you’re greeted by sports memorabilia, a huge projector and two screens inside this cozy little box of a place that make for an unabridged sports-bar ambience. Add to that craft beer on tap, inexpensive all-you-can-drink options, pop-quizzes, karaoke and decent grub and you get an archetypal Friday-night haunt. And that’s precisely what Aufside intends to be all about.
Now, atypical as it may sound, our dinner started with food and the drinks followed; but we got enough of both for the sequence to not matter. Here’s an account of the same –
Of the starters, the Crispy Chicken Tenders and the Herbed Chicken are the ones that left a mark; the Nachos, Grilled Prawns, Jalapeno Cheeseballs, and the Olive Bruschetta were alright…and the Honey Chilli Potato Bites, Cheese and Jalapeno Poutine and Sauteéd Mushrooms were a total miss, for me.
The Crispy Chicken Tenders were perfectly crumb fried, were hot and soft enough, inside and went very well with the cajun spice dip.
The grilled prawns were fresh, crunchy enough (no, not crispy, but crunchy the way grilled prawns ought to be) and were a tad briny, probably from the butter in the sauce they were tossed in.
The Herbed Chicken was nice and herby, and the meat was succulent.
The problem with the Nachos, if there was one, was that the flavors were not coming out as much as I’d want them too. Not that they weren’t there, they probably needed a little more punch.
There were no Jalapenos whatsoever in the Jalapeno Cheeseballs but they were still great to have with and the Poutine was not served separately with the fries but was poured over them, rendering the whole thing soggy and cheesy. Tsk tsk.
The Olive Bruschetta was missing the melted cheese topping, but was still decent as it was (not everyone on the table agreed with me) and the Mushrooms were cold by the time I had them, so the fact that I didn’t savor them much is entirely my fault.
The one thing that was really off (unanimously, across the table) was the portion of honey chilli potato bites, the heat from the chilli overpowered pretty much every other flavor the chef may have intended to infuse in the potatoes and left a pretty nasty burning sensation on the palate and down the throat.
Of the mains, the stuffed crepes were a lovely cheesy; so cheesy in fact that the ratatouille was lost in there. Not that I’m complaining ! I love my cheese and they’d used more than one of them here, so…
The Grilled Cottage Cheese was another winner, a perfectly done bed of cottage cheese that had an evidently nutty aftertaste from the peanut sauce and went very well with the sides.
The Chicken Roulade was also a well done piece of work – succulent chicken breast stuffed with tomatoes, olives and … more cheese ! #ImLovinIt
All this was washed down with a beer cocktail (the defender) that was a delicate balance between watermelon and beer (no, it wasn’t sweet, which is basically what I liked about it) but it went a little too flat after the first few sips. I always had to pair it with some food so it wasn’t much of a standalone beverage.
And our hosts were nice enough to keep, and offer Coronas.(Notice the ‘s’ at the end of the sentence, I’m talking about a plural noun here).
Desserts served were both chocolate mousses and both of them uniquely wonderful in their own right. Just the right texture and not too sweet. Me likey.
All in all, Aufside is a great place to catch a match, catch up or just catch (remember, there’s a practice net right outside) and indulge in decent food and drink options while you’re at it.
Food – 4/5
Service – 4/5
Ambience – 4/5
Value for money – 4/5
Here’s a beef starter that was as pretty as it looks, or so I was told.
Oh, and not to forget the pork chops. The BBQ sauce was delish !