Friday, August 28, 2009

Eating Out - Qube

Last Saturday, I happened to be passing by the Qube hotel, which opened 5 weeks ago in Heidelberg. Someone I know who works there said they were trying to create a restaurant that is not a "hotel" restaurant. That is, they are trying to create a restaurant where locals would eat. I qualify as a local, and I would eat there.

When we walked in, we were invited to have a tour of the hotel. On the grounds that once held a little cottage in the middle of the town now stands a 6 story hotel, with a focus on sustainability. As was explained to me by our tour guide, this is not because they want to be an eco-hotel, but simply because this is a long-term business model. This is a long-term business model that I agree with.

After having enjoyed the view from the rooftop patio, we went back downstairs for dinner. I ordered the "Kleine Apperetif" - the small snack - as an appetizer to share. I quickly realized that I had to grab my cell phone to blog about this place. The photos could use some improvement but the snack couldn't have been better. Grissini, presented with a trio of tapenade, aioli & foie gras. My only complaint is that there was not enough grissini. We were, however, given a basket of bread from a baker who has been recognized as one of the best in Germany.

As a part of the effort to encourage locals to eat there, the chef has been imported from Schumann's in Munich, apparently a legendary hotel. I'm not a fan of titles, I'm not blown away by a resume. I am blown away by a snow-white aioli.

After our small snack, the mains arrived. For me, the shrimp and summer vegetable tempura. For my companion, the tuna in sesame crust. The shrimp was drizzled in a mildly spicy chili sauce, and the summer vegetables were reduced to carrots and yellow & green zucchini. There are no local sweet potatoes but there are currently local green beans and eggplant. I would have greatly enjoyed this seasonal addition.

The tuna, on the other hand, was great. Half in a sesame crust, pink in the middle with large strips of daikon on the side. The better choice.

In the past week, I have recommended the place to 2 more people and discovered, while walking past, that they also have a 3 course lunch menu. Maybe I'll try it when I'm working from home one of these days. Or I'll just head out there for drinks with small snacks. It's nice to have a good hotel restaurant so close to home.


Cathy said...

We have a hotel that opened here a few years ago too - they have 2 great restaurants and I think more locals eat there than visitors! That tempura looks divine!

taste traveller said...

When I was in university, a friend & I would go for high tea at the Sheraton once a month. It was great!
The tempura itself got somewhat soggy but the shrimp were perfect.

Amanda said...

There's a Delta in my city that has a really creative restaurant inside. Whenever we go there, they seem (pleasantly) surprised that we are local, and not hotel guests! It's a shame, because it's really good. I should work harder at spreading the word...

taste traveller said...

Amanda, I think there's a Delta in London, Ontario. They have the most amazing fritatta - it totally turned me onto eggs!

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