The restaurant the Hydrostone never knew it was missing

On a hot summer day, you want food that is light and refreshing. Much to our delight, the folks at the now open Hydrostone restaurant, The Ostrich Club, have this entirely sorted.

For those unfamiliar, The Ostrich Club is the latest offering from the group that brought us Agricola Street Brasserie and Little Oak, both of which landed on our 25 Best Places to Eat list for 2018. So, it was pretty much a given this place was gonna be good.

While curb appeal was undoubtedly in hand – it is the Hydrostone after all – the inside left us smitten. Casual decor awash in natural light gives the new space a relaxed feel. My eye immediately went to the bar, which has a direct view of the kitchen, so we were pleased when we found out we would be seated there for the evening.

Once settled, we were handed our menus. Officially, it was their soft launch, so there were no prices to be seen. Instead, we were given free reign to order whatever we desired and we were happy to do just that.

We started with salads – both the Cucumber and Strawberry Salad and the Oyster Salad were outstanding. Of all the great salads we’ve had this year, these two rank in our top three. Very close to perfect.

We followed up with seafood plates. Once again the Swordfish and the Halibut were hits, though I admit my eye wandered when I saw the Braised Beef Cheek pass by.

For dessert, we really went for it. We skipped the cheese plate but ordered everything else. We knew from prior experience at our hosts’ other restaurants that it was likely the dessert offerings would be exceptional, and we weren’t disappointed. Three desserts, two people, no regrets. We’d do it again, even.

Drink selection was also spot on. The list is not vast but is clearly well curated – with a variety of local wines. And there are beer taps, bottled cider (from Sourwood), and cocktails too. The star, however, was the aged Port we had with dessert. We have had many before, but this was exceptional.

With new openings comes new possibilities. I will admit to a little apprehension as we made our way to the restaurant earlier that evening. Does Halifax need another small plates restaurant? It’s hard to say, but the Hydrostone definitely needs The Ostrich Club and – for what it’s worth – so do you.