All right, I’m finally getting around to writing about the restaurants we visited over a month ago for Tallinn Restaurant Week! First up: Ö.
Restaurant Ö (which means “island” in Swedish) is considered one of the best restaurants in Tallinn. It’s a little pricey so when I saw that they were participating in Restaurant Week with a 2-course 10 EUR per person lunch menu, I knew we had take advantage of this chance to try it. This was the lunch menu on offer, taken from the Restaurant Week site:
Fillet of rabbit with rabbit and pear strudel
served in creamy false morels sauce
with vanilla ice-cream and baked apple cream
Since Ö is a fancy place, our meal actually began with an amuse bouche.
On the spoon was some kind of fennel cream with caviar and the tiny cup contained beet consomme, which was very salty. I couldn’t really taste the fennel, but J said he definitely tasted a licorice flavor.
Next our waiter offered us two different types of bread and this lovely swirl of butter on a rock. I opted for the dense white walnut bread, and when I say dense, I mean this slice of bread had some surprising heft to it. The chewy bread topped with the creamy butter (which had been sprinkled with sea salt) was seriously delicious. I know bread and butter seems like such an everyday thing, but believe me when I say that this bread and this butter were exceptional.
Then came our first course of rabbit two ways. See that little pinkish thing over on the left? That’s a rabbit kidney. I tried it but the taste was too similar to that of liver, one of the few things I don’t eat. The rabbit meat itself is like very firm chicken, much less flaky under the fork, and it was served with a delicious mushroom sauce. I usually don’t love fruit in my savory food, but the pear-rabbit strudel was, not surprisingly, very well-balanced. All wrapped up in a crispy phylo-like pastry, it was very pleasant to eat. Since I like varying textures in my food, I enjoyed the strudel more than the straight-up rabbit meat.
Finally, there was dessert.
I think my favorite part of this was actually the ice cream. The description says it was vanilla ice cream, but it tasted like there was something else in addition to vanilla, some secret ingredient we tried to figure out but couldn’t. Maybe that’s just what really, really good vanilla tastes like :). The baked apple cream was also quite cool, a rich foam that tasted purely of apples.
We really enjoyed our meal at Ö. The service there is impeccable and with the Restaurant Week menu we got incredible value for our money. I can’t say we’re going to become regular patrons, but I would recommend it to somebody looking for a high-quality dining experience in Tallinn.