Monday, February 20, 2012

Mr Mason

I often wonder where restaurant names come from. Is it from the head chef, the owners, or some other person? Did the restaurant name mean something to someone at some point or is it just some random title that they thought sounded nice. I know that even the best of them get it wrong sometimes, such as at Vue de Monde where the "de" should be "du" so it meant "view of the world" in French. As it stands, it's meaningless. Musicians are famous for naming albums with obscure titles, such as Mylo Xyloto, but usually there's tonnes of press coverage to find the meaning. With restaurants, I haven't really read too many accounts of why a restaurant is named such. This long intro brings me to my point (I'm long winded), which is where the name Mr Mason comes from and what it means? Is it from Jane Eyre, or Harry Potter or the name of a previous owner, or their second cousin on their mother's side? Who knows, but it's interesting to ponder, for me anyway.

I was invited to Mr Mason to try out their French inspired menu. Upon arriving, I saw that the restaurant is divided into three sections. There was a lounge/bar area, a dining area and an outdoor area. The whole environment was very relaxing and I liked how the space was divided. A friendly waitresses greeted us and took our drinks orders before returning to take our food orders.

For entrees, we chose the Oysters with Vinaigrette and the Charcuterie Platter. Both plates arrived at once, and this was when the shortcoming of the table was highlighted. The tables are far too small for two diners and could hardly hold two averaged sized plates let alone two big platters of oysters and charcuterie. We shuffled everything and managed to place the plates on the table, albeit hanging a bit over the edge.

Onto the actual food, I liked the oysters, with a zingy vinaigrette. I also liked the plate with the M on it, as that's what got me thinking about the restaurant name. My first association with M is James Bond, and I chuckled at the thought of James Bond saying "I'll have my oysters stirred, not shaken".

The Charcuterie Platter was also good, and very filling. There were huge slabs of pate, terrines, beef slices and condiments served with a towering stack of bread. After finishing this, we were quite full already.

The John Dory fish was cooked well and tasted good. The witlof salad served with it was also nice.

A Lamb Rump with potato dumplings was quite nice. I found the lamb soft, although others I've heard from did find the lamb rather chewy. I didn't like the potato dumplings at all though. They tasted quite bad with a strong flour-ey taste.

Dessert for me, was a clear highlight. A Raspberry Creme Brulee was super smooth, had a thin crackling sugar top and the flavours of the raspberry in the brulee was perfect.

Service wise, it was efficient but felt a bit forced. The waitresses was trying so hard to please that it became a tad awkward at times when she kept asking how the food was. I liked the ambiance in the restaurant and their was a jovial mood. The food is quite good and worth trying out.

Overall Rating: 13/20, Food is nice and ambiance enjoyable.

Scores: 1-9: Unacceptable, don't bother. 10-11: Just OK,some shortcomings. 12: Fair. 13: Getting there. 14: Recommended. 15: Good. 16: Really good. 17: Truly excellent. 18: An outstanding experience. 19-20:Approaching perfection, Victoria's best.

My guest and I dined complimentary of Mr Mason.

Mr Mason on Urbanspoon


  1. Why not ask the restaurant where the name comes from (particularly when your meal was a freebie, with presumably some email contact with the restaurant/PR person beforehand)?

  2. I felt that the du/de thing a bit weird too. Hehe

  3. Claire, I asked the waitress but she didn't know. If I had a burning desire to know about Mr Mason in particular, I would email the PR. My musings were more a general interest about how any restaurant came up with their varied and interesting names.

    Michelle, it was an error by Shannon which he then kept apparently as all the restaurant plates were done already with the mistake.

  4. Oooh the charcuterie platter does look good. I hope you didn't eat too much bread. ;)

  5. I'm just hungry reading this :P I commented if the bust on the bar area was indeed Mr Mason.. but they just stared blankly... *sigh*

  6. Agnes, I only ate one piece of bread. That was during my better phase.

    I-Hua, that's rather funny. So we both asked and they didn't know.