The tapas menu provides tasty smaller portions that can be ordered one by one throughout a lunch or evenings entertainment. The bar and lounge are both dedicated to the tapas & lunch menus, and furnished with hand-crafted tables made from some of the original red pine floorboards, together with additional antique pieces. In the lounge is the original magnificent fireplace, still with its complete and elaborate mantle and surrounding red pine mouldings.More...
I have been to the Rousseau House several times and it was always really good - this last time on November 9 was just horrible. We sat upstairs which is just OK - I prefer downstairs as it's nicer - only 3 table full and us - it seems that they were short of severs as the Hostess was serving us. We asked about the soup of the day and she didn't know what it was, when she came back she told us she couldn't pronounce it.....what? Then she had a hard time with the dinners when we asked about them.....she acted very unprofessional they way she spoke and stood. We ordered apps which were very good - cesar salad and scallops. Our main dinners were horrible - I had the pickerel which had no flavor, it said on the menu it had turnip, I only found 3 very small pieces, no rice or spuds - my partner had the braised ribs, again not much flavor and the meat was very fatty, by the time you pulled off the fat there was hardly anything left, again no spuds. A waiter, not the hostess came over to see if everything was OK - my partner who doesn't complain about anything spoke up about how awful the meals were and that there seem to be no rice or potatoes - the answer we got was "the chef is not big on carbs".....what? For the price you pay ($34 per plate) do you not think they can put a spoonful of rice or potatoes on the plate and let the client decide if they want them or not. I also ordered a glass of wine before my meal and I received after I finished my meal.....that's not acceptable. After we complained, the waiter did come back to say that the manager has offered us free dessert - we decided to forgo the offer, accept a free cofffee instead - paid our bill and left. For the money (our bill was $166 with tip for 2 people) and very small s portions I will never return to the Rousseau House unless management changes or the chef......I guess this is why it wasn't very busy on a Saturday night. Spend you money elsewhere - there's better places close by like the Ancaster Old Mill.
To give you an idea, here is what I wrote to the restaurant:
FYI.....Today was my Mother’s 85th birthday, and although late notice, I decided to book your restaurant for a Sunday brunch with some of our family. We were in the upstairs Honeysuckle room, which was lovely and our food was fine, however, our waiter was horrible! What was up with him??? I have never experienced such a pompous, unfriendly, condescending waiter in all of my life! He made all of us feel like we were putting him out! I was very embarrassed that it was me who had chosen the location of our celebration. He’s very fortunate that the gratuities were included because tipping a waiter 20% for treating me like dirt for an hour or so, is certainly not my style!
Our server waivered between incapable and indifferent. Mixed up the orders, left us unattended for long stretches (the restaurant was not busy). We needed to ask for refills of water and were not given new cutlery after appetizers ~ we just shifted them aside when our entrees arrived. Some of the food was tasty but most was bland and disappointing. Considering the price, there are MANY other establishments in the area that are much, much better.
Great ambiance in the casual dining room downstairs. beautiful restored stone building.
Food was good, but nothing really stood out. It did not live up to our expectations.
Server was slow and not overly attentive or polite.
Would reccomend the patio for drinks, lunch or tapas....would not recommended going in for dinner.
We entertained very good friends and anticipated a lovely dinner.
Positives: The wait staff was attentive and pleasant.
The evening weather was perfect for eating en pleine aire. We enjoyed appetizers at our home prior to our reservations.
Negatives: Shrimp and scallops with risotto- risotto was 'mushy' and had the flavour and texture of having cream of mushroom soup stirred in, shrimp had a peculiar plastic taste which was quite unpleasant, scallops undercooked. If the flavours had been exemplary, I may have overlooked the fact that the dish had 2 shrimp and 3 scallops over a dollop of rice for the cost of $26.95. Each of the other meals was beautifully displayed, reportedly tasted reasonably pleasant, but nothing to write home about, extremely limited in quantity. The two men in our party remained hungry upon completion of their meals.
Our overall cost totalled $215, which is perfectly acceptable for an exceptional meal, but we all felt that this was far too high for the quality and quantity we experienced.
Very disappointing and it appears that since our last visit some years ago, we have not missed very much - the nouvelle cuisine approach in this case seems to be meeting the requirements for presentation and paucity, while not at all meeting the high quality one expects of the food itself.
It was perfect patio weather and the Rousseau House has a lovely patio. The service was perfect as always. The Smoked Salmon was served in a Greek Style Pita with red onion, cucumber and dill cream spread. This was really nice, the smoked salmon was delicately smoked and very fresh and the dill cream spead has a nice light fresh flavor. The caesar salad was great as always s long as you ask for the panchetta to be crisp. The Quiche was a touch too brown on top but still had great flavor.
We chose to dine in the bar area and it was welcoming and relaxing. The Caesar Salad is always great. The grilled Calamari is a nice light starter and is grilled to the minute. I liked it a little better when it was served with Mango Salsa instead of the orange pieces it comes with now. The Gnocchi was light and pillowy like it should be, the chef does a great job making the Gnocchi. The mushroom componet is just a little to strong. The Grilled Vegetable sandwich was really lovely. The vegetables were grilled perfectly an the goat cheese spread is a nice creamy addition to the sandwich. We had this served with the pomme frites instead of the house salad it usually come with. The pomme frites are just like to fries I grew up with at home. The steak was done medium rare as ordered and the herb butter disk served on top had a nice flavor and the caesar salad was perfect.
This restaurant is always great and the quality of food served is always fresh and of high quality.
Rousseau House is a charming place to have lunch...
Rousseau House is a charming place to have lunch any day of the week. The entire staff are always pleasant and attentive. The Caesar Salad is back to being exceptional. The Bruschetta is unique and has wonderful flavors but could have been served a touch warmer. The Mushroom Gnocchi is not as good as the previous Gnocchi on the last menu ( Gnocchi in a Brown Butter Sauce ). We found the mushrooms a little to strong for the delicate Gnocchi. Maybe a lighter mix of Mushrooms would lighten up the flavor. That being said, the chef has definitely prefected making by hand light, soft Gnocchi.
Tapas is always a wonderful way to dine with friends. The Rousseau House Tapas menu is very unique with plenty of options for everyones taste. The new crust used for the Pizzetta is excellent ( This is our new favorite)
The grilled calamari is a nice change from the less heathier version of deep fried and the mango salsa is a fresh garnish. Gnocchi is the best we have eaten in a very long time. Rousseua Nacho seem to be baked not fried and the toppings are very light and fresh(Another one of our favorites). The stuffed wings have a lovely unique way of preperation. A nice change from the usual wing served everywhere. This is our favorite local restaurant and recommend everyone try it. You will be hooked. Andy and his staff are very professional and friendly to everyone that walks thru the door.
One of the worst dining experiences of my life. ALL 4 pastas were horribly bland and the vegetables tasted old. We were there a VERY long time and it definitely wasn't the quality expected and certainly not worth the money. I would never go back
Wings-> Delicious Maple Sauce which dripped onto...
Wings-> Delicious Maple Sauce which dripped onto fresh cut fries served underneath the wings.
Lamb Burger-> Perfectly cooked, nice and moist, great fixing on top including Brie cheese etc.
Other dishes the group had that all received great responses...Escargot, Caeser Salad, Pizza, Fettucine, Sirloin Tips.
Service was great but server seemed either nervouse or lacked personality.
The atmosphere was wonderful. The food was excellent. Most impressive was the fact that a vegetarian dinner entree was on the menu at the top of the list! It was delicious, as were the sorbets and ice creams that we thoroughly enjoyed!
Visited with relatives from Italy. Food and wine...
Visited with relatives from Italy. Food and wine was amazing, esp the New York Strip Loin. While they were here (2 weeks) we ate dinner 4 times at Rousseau, all consistently amazing. The servers and owner were professional, helpful and warm (one time the sun room was chilly and the woner raised the temperature for us! The chocolaye creme brulee was fantastic too! One of the best places I have visited in the wider Hamilton area!
The Rousseau House is one of our very favourite...
The Rousseau House is one of our very favourite places to eat, whether it is sitting on the patio for Sunday brunch, dining in the porch addition or participating in a special event upstairs. It is a lovely building with excellent food and service. Very few add up to the same ambiance in the Hamilton area.
Chef Kai's talents are really amazing. I love that he changes his menus with the seasons and gives each dish his very best. Every weekend there's a fantastic dinner feature, portions are always perfect. Its nice to go to a beautiful place with such history and not hear the chef screaming at the staff from the kitchen.
Two thumbs up to the Kershaw Family.