The Mitchell Block – 173 McDermot Avenue

Review by Roger Monk

Previously operating under the name Tre Visi, new owner Sean McKay, rebranded his McDermot Street restaurant, The Mitchell Block, a few short months ago. The name pays homage to the Mitchell Drug Company that built the building for their pharmacy and laboratory in 1886. While the restaurant no longer offers traditional Italian fare you can still find an assortment of pastas, which are now made fresh in house, along with a varied assortment of top notch dishes.

If you are looking for atmosphere, great service, presentation and food that is second to none, then make your reservation at The Mitchell Block. Open for the downtown lunch crowd and evening diners, it is the perfect stop before or after a show.

The Mitchell Block Beef Carpaccio
The Mitchell Block Beef Carpaccio

The evening began with the lightest, best tasting focaccia I have ever eaten, paired with an artichoke and roasted red pepper butter. It set the bar for the evening. Dinner started with an appetizer of beef Carpaccio, topped with shaved parmesan, capers, watercress and deep fried rinds. The Carpaccio melted in your mouth, it was a feast for the eyes and taste buds.

For my main course I had the roasted lamb shank with orzo, whipped feta, beets, baby carrots and Swiss chard. The lamb fell off the bone; it was moist and gently seasoned to perfection which was complimented by the spicy curried orzo. As a lamb connoisseur, I was blown away. My dinner guest had the evening special: sea bass on top of pasta arrabbiata with anchovies. Crisp fish and spicy pasta made a perfectly delightful pairing.

Dessert was not disappointing and provided the perfect end. Homemade truffles with rhubarb sauce were light and not sickly sweet and the gelati was refreshing with authentic espresso coffee poured over top. Open only four months, the Mitchell Block is destined to be the hottest new restaurant in Winnipeg. The decor is eclectic, a perfect blend of rustic and modern. Intimate seating for only a dozen tables creates a nice atmosphere, perfect for dinner conversation. Entrees range from $24 to $28.