The Workshop Eatery’s rolling doors opened a couple of weeks ago, the deep south Edmonton establishment promising handcrafted seasonal fare without being unapproachable or pretentious. I had a chance to try out brunch earlier on, a delightful way to spend a Saturday and a visit to the new co-working space, The Mosaic Centre.
Brunch is a rarity for me, the accomplishment of household chores, diddly-daddling, coffee sipping and Joe’s sleepy nature all contributing factors as to why we’re never ready to leave the house before 11am. It’s around that time that we’re hungry, ready to venture into the downtown area or Chinatown to grab a quick lunch. Something about that Saturday morning though prompted me to go to The Workshop Eatery to try their brunch menu though. It’s called Ikea. Despite Joe’s protests about Swedish meatballs and soft serve ice creams, I was fixated on a real brunch meal for once.
The Mosaic Centre is Canada’s biggest net-zero building, the commercial co-working space delivering on its promise: beautiful, sustainable, and affordable. For now, it houses The Workshop Eatery, a day care, and numerous spaces for the community to use to innovate and collaborate. The morning we were there, a yoga instructor class was being held in the open stairwell spaces and numerous rooms were being utilized for what looked like a brainstorming meeting. It’s a pretty cool space and I’m envious of Summerside for having such a beautiful building!
Workshop Eatery continues the open concept in their own space, the kitchen and bar barrier-free to diners. I love bright, airy, relaxed spaces! Joe and I were seated closer to the front of the restaurant, a bit further off from the action, although cozy and private for our meal. The mural of farm vegetables around the daily chalkboard was cute and rustic. Also noteworthy: the music. I don’t think I’ve really paid attention to what kind of music a restaurant was playing, but it’s been a long time since I’ve heard good ol’ Red Hot Chili Peppers during a meal. I’m a fan.
Headed by owner and Chef Paul Shufelt, previously Executive Chef of Century Hospitality Group, the brunch menu offers the favourites: an eggs benny, straight up eggs, bacon, hash and toast, three omelette selections and even a Heuvos Benedict. The ‘Banana in Pyjamas’ stood out on the menu because the thought of banana bread French toast smeared with Nutella, slivered almonds, and Saskatoon berry compote is enough to make somebody really think about which way to go. Savoury or sweet? Oh my god the decisions.
Joe was lost without his usual noodle soups for lunch, but he went with the ‘Vegetable Melt’, a mix of spicy tomato jam, roasted Mona mushrooms, red wine braised onions and a creamy herb goat cheese and fresh arugula between local Bon Ton Bakery country sourdough. Loved the sweetness of the tomato jam and I’m always a fan of Mona mushrooms! The dish also came with a choice of the day’s soup, salad, or housemade kettle chips. I was secretly hoping Joe would choose the kettle chips but the ‘Cream of Winter Mushroom Soup’ with truffle oil and chive creme fraiche was a fantastic choice! Served piping hot too. Nothing is more irritating than a room temperature soup.
While my head, heart, and stomach debated between ordering a savoury or sweet dish (BANANAS IN PYJAMAS!), I ended up ordering the ‘Chorizo & Chedda’ Omelette’. Again, the appearance of local farms or producers was a bonus: the eggs from Four Whistle Farms, the chorizo by Irving Farms Fresh (according to our server), all cooked together with aged white cheddar to make a delicious omelette. The potato hash was in its purest form, a slight crisp to the potatoes and the use of fresh bell peppers, onions, and herbs. It was refreshing to see the ingredients being highlighted as they were.
I can happily say that Workshop Eatery delivered on its promise for that weekend: a handcrafted meal highlighting fresh ingredients! Imagine what they can do when summer rolls around and their gardens flourish! Or how about their bee hives on the roof of The Mosaic Centre? I’m anxious to see the space come spring time to see more of the space. It was also nice to see Workshop Eatery as a family-friendly establishment, the table next to us a young family of three. I was a little jealous of the young boy who ordered the ‘Bananas in Pyjamas’. He then exclaimed to our server that it was the best thing he ever ate and that they’d come back every day. I knew I should have ordered sweet. Next time.
Congratulations to Chef Paul Shufelt and his team on their grand opening! Although the space is a bit out of reach for me, those in the area are lucky to have The Workshop Eatery! I hope to be back for dinner soon, the menu looks fantastic and to come back for brunch. Fact: their menus actually get updated on their website. Who does that? Love it. And for those wondering about Ikea? We didn’t even go. I just needed an excuse to head south for brunch, bahaha!The Workshop Eatery
2003 91 St SW