Update September 2011: Went to Earls again and could not resist the chicken sandwiches: in between two ciabata buns, there’s a layer of greens, a layer of brie, a layer of garlic mayo, a layer of chicken, a layer of apples and a layer of figs spread. The combination is simply mouth watering. Did I mention that the fries really taste like fries? This time, we sat on the patio and discovered that it is way bigger than expected. Definitely a place to go during summer. We parked behind the restaurant, and had to pay a $2 flat fee (which we thought the restaurant should cover, but then Earls is not the cheapest place so I guess the patrons don’t mind it). The only disappointment was, yet again, the drinks: this time, we got the daily special – margarita for $4.99. We expected one of those small stem glasses, but the drink came in a huge pop glass we were unable to finish without getting either sick or drunk.
Earls on 4th street downtown is one of the places where I’d go again. I like the ambiance and the design, it’s conveniently positioned in a more pedestrian area of the city, and I like the food. My partner and I went there a few weeks ago for lunch. We asked to be seated in the restaurant, so that we can talk to each other and enjoy the food peacefully. The lounge area has tall tables and big TV screens on the walls – not my favorites for enjoying a quiet, tête- à-tête lunch.
I decided on the chicken sandwich with figs spread and brie ($13.25). It came with french fries, which were surprisingly good (I often come across fries that taste like paper, probably because they are not freshly peeled and fried). The sandwich was simply delicious – the combination of the sweet figs spread, the melted brie, cooked apples and grilled chicken, all wrapped in chiabatta bread was irresistible. My partner got a 7oz sirloin steak ($23) which came with a nice little salad.
The only disappointment was – as it always is in Calgary – the lack of options for non-alchoolic beverages. All the pops come from the fountain and they never taste good. We got two iced teas that tasted like an expired medicine… I wish they’d offer more sparkling water, freshly squeezed lemonade or fresh orange juice. It’s not that hard, and, given the whole rhetoric on healthy eating, it is most appropriate.
All in all, our bill came to 44.36 (gst included, before tip).