May 24, 2015
The Bier Markt at Shops at Don Mills was having a mussels promotion: $11 for 1 lb. of mussels and fries (half price) and other discounted dishes like their pork schnitzel.
A la Snob with pernod, leeks, tomato concasse, lobster creme
Congo with Thai Red Curry, lemongrass, fresh lime and coconut milk
Provencale with herbs, tomato concasse, shallots, garlic and white wine.
Wow - after eating this, I totally understand why the Bier Markt at Shops at Don Mills had to do this promotion. What a disappointment! the mussels were smaller and a lot of the shells in the bowl were empty of mussels.
As for the broths: the A la snob was totally bland, we got a hint of the flavours but barely anything substantial because it was really watered down.
Then the Provencale didn’t have enough liquid, but based on the experience of the rest - this was probably the better of the three we had.
The Congo was another disappointment - the flavours from the broth didn't soak into to the actual mussels.
The fries were pretty good at least.
A little better than the mussels, still a little dry. We were a little puzzled by the tomato sauce on top.
Overall: Terrible meal at Bier Markt at Shops at Don Mills.
The Don Mills location is very spacious and it has a hip and happening vibe to it. Every Friday night, a live band plays on a stage near the main bar.
We got the Markt poutine to share with house smoked chicken, Quebec cheese curds, Markt fries and Leffe Brun peppercorn gravy.
We were rather disappointed with this because there wasn't a lot of chicken and it really wasn't worth it for that extra $4.
Schnitzel - panko crusted veal with grilled asparagus, yukon mash, tomato jam, lemon caper emulsion and veal reduction.
I found the schnitzel too dry even with the tomato jam and veal reduction. The portions were huge - but unless you had a good beer paired with the veal schnitzel it was just too dry.
My friends all got different types of mussels (which made it fun to try a few of everyone else's meal). The mussels were tiny, but for some, the broth more than made up for the size.
In order of my favourites (between the 3 types):
1) Congo with red Thai curry, lemon grass, fresh lime and coconut milk - absolutely delish! Some might say that the curry slightly overpowers the mussels, but I think it's a great combination with the spiciness of the curry complementing the mussels - really different and quite good! Why didn't people think of it before?
2) A la Snob with pernod, tomato concass, leeks and lobster cream. I don't think the mussels worked as well with the creamy broth, but I loved dipping the bread and fries into the sauce.
3) Provencale with herbes de Provence, tomato concass, shallots, garlic and white wine. Simple and classic way of doing mussels. The blend of flavours was great, but I think here's where the small size of the mussels played a part because they just didn't absorb as much of the flavour of the broth.
Overall: I love Bier Markt and the opening of the new location is definitely bringing something new and different to the Don Mills area. They're beginning to get quite a crowd on Friday nights for food, drinks and music - this could be the new IT place at Shops at Don Mills. If you're here though, I'd definitely recommend the mussels over some of the other items on the menu (and the beer selection is fantastic and the waiters are knowledgable - it's in the name really). also cool that they have Oyster Towers - I might go back to try that!