Restaurant Reviews June-July 2019 Wet & Dry Dept

Wet & Dry Dept

Neighbourhood: Exchange 
Address: 173 McDermot Ave
Phone: 204-975-0160 
Entrées: $9-$15

Promptly at 7 pm, electronic beats begin to float through the air, drawing guests up a heritage building staircase to gather at Wet & Dry Department. This late-night lounge is The Mitchell Block’s rebranded sister restaurant, and while springing from the same DNA as the Mediterranean-inspired resto, it is clear that this sibling is young, hip and blazing its own trail.

White vinyl seats and plush banquettes line the second-floor space accented by sleek marble columns, and wood plank paneling. A glass-enclosed cellar displays rows of wine bottles, inviting couples and friends to partake in a glass or two of vino as they arrive. Distinguishing itself in both style and taste, a selection of fun flavourful classics are executed with upscale finesse.

Popular pub finger foods get contemporary fine dining flourishes. Deeply browned and crispy skin crackles on fried chicken. Accentuating the savoury white meat, robustly sweet mustard-whey sauce pools beneath a small tower of wings and legs. Coated in a vivacious chile glaze, ultra-tender button ribs pack a fiery punch, and a shot of lime juice completes these Thai-style morsels.

Merging trendy greens with traditional garlicy zest, Caesar salad swaps leafy romaine for a superfood boost from kale. A healthy shower of shaved Parmesan and preserved egg yolk add sharpness, and crisp pieces of sweetbread, texture and richness.

Chef Sean’s pasta-making mastery continues to shine in refined versions of North American dinner favourites like spaghetti and macaroni. Spicy sriracha is infused into buttery noodles, layering depth and heat, while Béchamel offers velvety texture to gooey sauce. From first bite, it’s clear this is not your run-of-the-mill mac and cheese.

With an effortlessly cool atmosphere and flawlessly executed dishes, Wet & Dry Department is a perfect destination for pre-party cocktails or an after-show bite.

Wet & Dry Department is open Wed & Thu 7 pm-12 am, and Fri-Sun 7 pm-2 am.

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