You know that adage “you can’t teach an old dog new tricks”? Well The Senator is definitely a lab that could use a few new tricks up its sleeve. Other than its convenient location, its name and super-friendly service, there’s really not much else going for it. I can certainly see it being an old favourite and perhaps that’s just why it’s still up, running and alive but the restaurant and food itself is not much to write home about. It certainly isn’t what I’d want a tourist to experience and think that it’s all that this great city of ours has to offer in the culture of restaurant dining.
First of all, the food was nothing I couldn’t make in my own kitchen. Other than considering the convenience factor, if I can easily make what’s being served then really the essence of dining is quite frankly lost. Warm milk and the usual mass-market greens pretty much sum up the balance of my meal. Where I can’t voice a negative thought is the location and convenience (across from Eatons; downtown hub) and the service (friendly- like you could totally go out for platonic drinks with the wait staff). However, if you are as visual and phobic of all forms of unknown, random-shaped things/dirt as I am then this place is not for you. The dust bunny in the corner and where it came from and what it’s doing there will distract you all hour long (you may even feel the need to cover it up using the menu). Yes, I did this.
And God blessed/cursed me with the gift/disability (depending on who you talk to) of “senseless” living (I’m talking about smell, not purpose) but I can imagine this must’ve been the place where every customer was a smoker and after years of smoke abuse it’s taken its toll on the walls, floors and furniture. Unfortunately for The Senator and thank goodness for all mankind, the age of smoking while dining is over but this place has failed to eradicate the remnants of its former self.
The old wood accents and mirrored walls maybe fifteen years ago would have sung trendy-traditional and masculine tunes but in this current decade this aged joint speaks drab, worn and retired. All the wrong lighting is in all the wrong places and it is just begging to be made over. It’s a place I can imagine Gordon Ramsey taking (after reprimanding the arse out of the owners of course) and turning it NOT into something it’s not but everything it was meant to be in every era, decade and time- a place for everyone to call home. But for me- home, this is not.
** out of 5