With the tagline ‘Kelowna’s Best Restaurant’ I think high expectations are a given for anyone visiting Raudz. I had picked it out as an extended birthday celebration, a special last night activity for Andy and I. I’m a huge fan of the concept of farm to table, as well as when places take pride in using local produce, as Raudz does.
On arrival, we were shown to our table: a rounded booth right next to the window. It was a great seat (and conveniently for Raudz, great for Covid-19 times), although we were directly adjacent to another couple about 10 metres away – which took a bit of getting used to. The only real flaw with where we sat is that we barely got to see the rest of the restaurant – which while creating an intimate experience, meant that my curious self couldn’t really assess the layout of the land. Not a problem pre-Covid, as I would just meander around, but nowadays it’s hard to leave your seat except to go to the bathroom.
The menu was sophisticated, brief and varied. A set menu with wine pairings was available, however a few items on the a la carte menu had caught our eyes so we went with that option instead. Our server was informative, patient and friendly. We indulged in rather large glasses of pinot gris and riesling across the night; while neither were as sweet as we tend to go for, it made for a pleasantly durable option.
We kicked off with some house made focaccia with pesto and hummus; the bread was so soft and fluffy it just melted in our mouths. I adored the pesto, whereas Andy was more a hummus kind of guy – that night, anyway. All of the food was presented well, garnished in a way that improved the look of the dish as well as giving us bonus flavours for whatever the main component was.
For mains, I had ordered oat crusted arctic char with a spinach style tart and Andy ordered duck breast and cherry tomato spaghetti. Both meals were well executed and extremely filling. I have been sold on arctic char ever since we visited Iceland and it basically tastes like a cross between salmon and trout. Happy days.
Last but not least was dessert. If we order to share, it’s always chocolate flavoured. In this case we ordered a chocolate self saucing pudding with a raspberry gelato and a whole bunch of deliciously decadent bits and bobs on the side. I was also extremely spoilt and was given a dessert plate that read ‘Happy Birthday’ in chocolate sauce. I’m glad we didn’t order a dessert each!
All in all, I would happily recommend Raudz for an anniversary or special night out. Everything was done extremely well and even the price came to lower than what we were expecting. PS. The name Raudz is derived from the chef’s name – Rod.