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city palate T H E


O F C A L G A R Y ’ S S I N C E 1 9 9 3



summer in the city palate






GREEN APPLE CHELADA 3/4 oz MONIN Granny Smith Apple Syrup 1/2 oz Lime juice 7 oz Lager beer Ice Lemon slice Fill serving glass 1/2 with ice, add remaining ingredients and stir gently. Garnish with a lemon slice. Visit us and select from the over 100 premium MONIN syrup flavours we stock. They’re great in cocktails too!







WE’RE PLANET PROTECTORS Celebrating 40 years of wellness A healthy planet is at the heart of our business. From our commitment to reducing waste and energy efficient equipment and lighting, to being the first to stop using plastic bags, we’re paving the way to a greener future. It’s about protecting what we love – no matter what.







22 n

A Brown Booze Cocktail Party

Here’s to brown liquor cocktails and the spirits that make them shine Dan Clapson

26 n

Gobbling up Calgary’s Great New Neighbourhoods

Shelley Boettcher

28 n

Dîner en Blanc

One of summer’s most welcome events Stephanie Arsenault

30 n

France’s Marathon du Medoc

The longest marathon in the world includes 21 wine tastings BJ Oudman


7 n word of mouth

Notable culinary happenings around town

9 n eat this

What to eat in July and August Ellen Kelly

10 n drink this

The craft of cocktail creation Mike Roberson

12 n get this

Must have kitchen stuff Karen Anderson

14 n one ingredient

Cooking with brown liquor Julie Van Rosendaal

Pranzo al fresco. (PRAN-zo al FRESS-coh) Explore the art of dining outdoors. Gather family and friends and make some memories.

It doesn’t get more sunny than that.

18 n feeding people

Hunting the haskap Erin Lawrence

32 n stockpot

Stirrings around Calgary

36 n 6 quick ways with...

Saskatoon berries Chris Halpin

38 n back burner... shewchuk on simmer

Summer schadenfreude Allan Shewchuk

COVER ARTIST: Eden Thompson is a full time Calgary artist working in mixed media and paper. Incorporating traditional techniques in a contemporary way, his original art has appeared on magazine and book covers. His unique cut-paper portraits have been commissioned internationally, and can be seen at edenthompson.com and etsy.com/shop/jetblackdragonfly.


Grocery. Bakery. Deli. Café. EDMONTON Little Italy | Southside | West End CALGARY Willow Park




city palate publisher/editor Kathy Richardier (kathy@citypalate.ca)

Offering a locally-inspired menu, featuring items that are meticulously handcrafted.


magazine design Carol Slezak, Yellow Brick Studios (carol@citypalate.ca) contributing editor Kate Zimmerman contributors Karen Anderson Stephanie Arsenault Shelley Boettcher Dan Clapson Chris Halpin Ellen Kelly Erin Lawrence BJ Oudman Mike Roberson Allan Shewchuk Julie Van Rosendaal

2008 Airport Road NE

contributing photographers Karen Anderson Shelley Boettcher OCTOBER 10 - 15, 2017 CALGARY, CANADA

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IRD R A only un TE til Aug u st 3

Sal e Now

1, 2017


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City Palate is published 6 times per year: January-February, March-April, May-June, July-August, September-October and November-December by City Palate Publishing Inc., Suite 419, 919 Centre St. NW, Calgary, AB T2E 2P9







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word of mouth


Just in case you’d like to know what Eau Claire Distillery concocted for us as our Pig & Pinot cocktail that celebrated Canada’s 150th birthday, it was great, so here’s the recipe for you to make to celebrate Canada and summer!

Canada 150 G&T 2 oz. Parlour Gin 1/2 oz. lime juice 6 B.C. cherries and 1 star anise 1 bottle Eau Claire Soda Company tonic water

Muddle the 6 B.C. cherries and star anise with the gin and lime juice, strain into a rocks glass with a large ice cube. Top with the tonic water, stir to combine and garnish with fresh cherries on a skewer or a Canadian flag! Serve with the rest of the tonic water.

the ox has changed, and it’s a good thing You may know by now, but Ox & Angela has been reimagined into a very Spanish tapas bar, Ox Bar de Tapas, and the menu is tapas-centered, that explains why you’re there – “Buen Provencho! You’re here… get eating!” You’ll eat and drink lots because that’s what we do in Spain! And chef Kai Salimaki is in the kitchen. He was at The Block Kitchen & Lounge, but needed a change. Yay! Thanks Ox.

read these: meatball masters Prohibition Freehouse at 1153 Kensington Cr. NW, has the answer to whatever ales you – local craft beer, interesting wines, creative grappa and cocktails, an open-air bar, rooftop patio, live music, and Freehouse has balls – a meatball-centric menu! Meatballs, veggie balls, PLUS a take-out meatball window by Alberta Meatball Co.! Grand opening June 23 and 24!

edgy veggies, a new cracker For your cheese or just to crunch on. We find these Edgy Veggie crackers at the Calgary Co-op’s downtown store at 1130 - 11th Ave. SW. Very tasty, indeed, with anything. These are the three flavours: rosemary roasted butternut squash, sweet red pepper Sriracha and smoked sweet corn chipotle. A Canadian product, made by Dendy & Co. Fine Foods in Richmond Hill, Ontario. Get yourself a bunch of boxes, you’ll be glad you did.

dinner to go can be perfect Sometimes the day just runs away with you and you don’t find the time or inspiration to fix dinner. We slide over to Lina’s Italian Market and scoop one of the tasty dinners, like the ricotta cheese stuffed shells in tomato sauce, that we decorated with spinach, made a big salad, and had ourselves a totally satisfying dinner. Yay Lina’s ready-to-go meals, and all the pizza fixin’s we often use. Pizza for dinner, leftover pizza for breakfast – works for us every time!

good smoked pulled pork at a beef shack! Cowtown Beef Shack has opened a location near SAIT at 16th Ave. and 12th St. NW. You’ll also find them in McKenzie Town. Look for delish smoked meats – we loved the pulled pork – and beef many ways, too. Check it out at cowtownbeefshack.ca

A big congratulations to Nicole Gomes, the newest Top Chef Canada: AllStars and the first female chef ever to win the top prize. She wowed the judges with a five-course “feast of a lifetime.” We are so proud because Nicole is one of us – a Calgarian – and the owner of two successful businesses, Nicole Gourmet Catering and Cluck N Cleaver, where you’ll find some of the best chicken you’ll ever eat. We wish all the very best to this talented and deserving chef.

Jordan Shuler, who used to work at Metrovino, one of our fave wine stores, is a sommelier who has gone east to become a professor at the Centre for Hospitality and Culinary Arts at George Brown College in Toronto. And he’s put his extensive knowledge of wine and food into an excellent book called Food and Wine Pairing in Three Steps: A Guide for the Hospitality and BeverageRetail Industries (Tellwell Talent, $34, paper cover). What a good thing he’s done for pairing wine and food – kept it simple and straightforward and not made a big freakin’ deal out of it. Find it at The Cookbook Co. and on Amazon. Visit foodandwinepairing.ca for all the tasty details. Better yet, get yourself a copy. If a family trip is on the agenda for this summer, you’ll want to pick up 25 Places in Canada Every Family Should Visit by Calgarian Jody Robbins (Touchwood Editions, $24.95, paper cover). Families have different travel needs, and Robbins gives the scoop on affordable hotels, worth-it attractions and restaurants that go beyond serving up chicken fingers. Part guidebook, part travel memoire and part how-to, it’s every adventurous family's must-have guide for exploring Canada. Find it at Shelf Life Books, Owl’s Nest Books, Walmart, Save-On-Foods and Indigo Chapters. It makes a great gift, too!



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Proudly dancing in Marda Loop for 16 years!

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eat this

Ellen Kelly


I know that in the past I’ve exhorted you to make the most of our small window of local bounty, but brace yourselves, here it is again. The truth is, we’re hard put to claim an embarrassment of riches at any other time. Long awaited sweet corn is on the menu, as are summer squashes and delicate shallots, to name but a few. Our markets will be overflowing with local and near-local produce; eat your fill, then freeze and can your way through the rest. That welcome taste of summer will help brighten the cold dark days of winter. But enough about winter! This is summer and you know what to do.

Illustrations by Eden Thompson


There are few culinary tropes as iconic in people’s minds as fresh CORN ON THE COB It’s said that one must start the water boiling, pick your corn and run to the pot in order to truly enjoy corn at its sweetest. This is because, as with most things grown, the sugars begin to convert to starch as soon as they’re harvested. Luckily our markets and roadside stands afford us the next best thing, corn just picked that morning. Don’t be afraid to ask; the fresher, the better is the rule with corn.

That being said, once you’ve had enough boiled and grilled cobs of butter-slathered corn, there are plenty of things to do with leftover or frozen kernels. Succotash, a melange of corn and lima beans at its simplest, is a quintessential new world peasant dish. Originating as a New England staple during the depression (corn and beans were cheap and readily available), this tasty dish can be anything you want it to be. I like to start with 4-5 slices of bacon, cooked until crisp and set aside. Cook 2 cloves of minced garlic and 1 chopped onion in the bacon fat until soft. Add 5 c. corn kernels (fresh, leftover or frozen) and 2 c. fresh (or frozen) fava, lima or green beans. At this point, chopped bell peppers, zucchini or even cooked potatoes can be added. Toss in 2 c. halved cherry tomatoes and season with salt as you go. After everything is good and hot, add some roughly torn basil leaves, 1 T. sherry vinegar, and freshly ground black pepper. Serve topped with the crumbled bacon and a soft poached egg or two for a memorable meal, be it breakfast, lunch or dinner.

SHALLOTS can be used interchangeably with onions (3 shallots to 1 onion, approximately), but their delicate, garlic-tinged flavour really deserves a solo performance. Pickling shallots brings out their sweetness and unique flavour. Choose 6-7 medium-sized shallots then peel and halve them. Pull the sections apart to create “petals.” Bring the following to a boil: 1 c. red wine vinegar, 1/4 c. cold water, 1/4 c. honey, 1 T. kosher salt, several sprigs of fresh thyme and 5-6 whole black peppercorns. Pour this mixture over the shallots. Allow to cool and refrigerate overnight or for at least 4 hours. These pretty pickles make a wonderful garnish in salads, on grilled meats, in sandwiches… the list goes on. Along these same lines, finely chopped shallots will transform your next vinaigrette.

Immature summer squash like ZUCCHINI, also known as courgette, is a real treat. It’s a prime candidate for stir fries, or sautéed on its own, its delicate flavour needing little more than good butter and/or olive oil and a scattering of fresh herbs. Basil is a particular friend. I, however, most often think of zucchini as an indispensible ingredient in the classic French Provencal dish, ratatouille. The combination of onion, garlic, eggplant, zucchini, red bell pepper, basil and tomato is summer magic. Try oven roasting all the chopped and olive oil-tossed ingredients (separately, for cooking times), and then combining them again to serve with fresh basil, crumbled chèvre and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar; delicious either hot or at room temperature.

BUY: Look for the freshest cobs of corn with pliant green husks and soft silk. The cobs should be heavy in the hand and have kernels to the top of the cob. The cut at the bottom should be fresh, not dried and shrivelled. TIPS: When corn is in season and you’re buying it from a reputable grower, it’s not necessary to peel back the husks unless you plan to purchase that cob. You can feel through the husk whether there are kernels up to the top and the condition of the husk should be enough of an indicator of freshness. DID YOU KNOW? Corn, a grain, when combined with a legume (beans), produces a dish that is very high in essential amino acids. Add dairy and you have a protein trifecta.

BUY: Shallots are available year round, but generally mature in summer. Buy bulbs that are clean and smooth with the papery skin intact. TIPS: Shallots caramelize especially well due to a slightly higher sugar content than onions. A cast iron pan will give you the best results. Use in pizzas, omelets, cooked vegetables and sandwiches. DID YOU KNOW? Shallots (think Tennyson’s The Lady of Shalott for pronunciation) are, of course, members of the genus allium, related to the large onion family. The ones we most often see are long, slender bulbs that grow in clusters, with dark golden or pinkish skins and a tinge of purple on the flesh.

BUY: Buy zucchini that is shiny, hard and unblemished. Look for a clean fresh cut at the stem that isn’t dried out or shrivelled. TIPS: Although the fruit can achieve a length of 2-3 feet or more, zucchini is at its best about 7-8 inches long. The skin is thin, seeds are almost nonexistent and the flesh is white and crisp. DID YOU KNOW? The flowers of any summer squash are edible and an unforgettable treat. Pick a few flowers, sacrificing the fruit to a greater good, and remove the pistils (female) or stamens (male). Working carefully, fill the flowers with a seasoned ricotta mixture (salt, pepper, chopped basil), lightly twirling and pressing the ends closed. With a gentle hand, dip the filled flowers in a tempura-like batter and deep fry until golden and crispy.

Ellen Kelly is a chef and regular contributor to City Palate.



drink this

Mike Roberson


“Think like a scientist and you will make better drinks.” – Dave Arnold, author of Liquid Intelligence: The Art & Science of the Perfect Cocktail

Part science, part art – the craft of cocktail creation can mystify, particularly when you’re sitting at the bar reading a cocktail menu, one rustically bound in leather or denim, wondering what to order. Do you start with a particular spirit, a classic cocktail, an original creation? Have you also ever wondered how bartenders decide to combine ingredients – a rum or gin with a particular herb or bitters, for example – let alone who allows these would-be chemical engineers to pillage the kitchen for raw materials to make syrups, tonics, or garnishes?

The Devonian, photo by Alena Jenkins Photography

According to some of Calgary’s best bartenders, your favourite inspired cocktails originate after research, experiment, and practice. Every bartender worth his or her salt (or sugar) insists on mastering the classics and understanding how their components intermingle. If you ask Jeff Savage, of Pr%f, it all begins with a certain “DNA”– the resilience of a classic recipe, the laws of bourbon, the botanicals of a gin, the flavour profile of an amari, even a visceral experience like a trip to the




PINE LINE CRUSH 5oz Ponderosa Gose 1oz Ungava Canadian Premium Gin Lemon or grapefruit twist (garnish)





Combine beer and gin in a pint glass filled with ice, garnish

Devonian Gardens in Calgary. For his Devonian cocktail, he begins with the lasting impression of smelling tropical plants in the gardens to create his floral concoction. Bartenders inevitably build on foundations by offering variations, homages, and deconstructions of the classics, often inspired by bar patrons looking for new experiences. Neila MacIntyre, formerly of Ox and Angela (now Ox Bar de Tapas), now at Una, loves the “segue” cocktail – that drink that enables a guest to push his or her own libation boundaries. For those with a love of the herbaceous piquancy of tequila, for example, MacIntyre suggests her Dos Amigos – an original creation that pairs tequila with its chain-smoking older cousin, mezcal, and introduces drinkers to a different spirit. Whether a bartender researches in books, on the Internet, or in front of the bar, he is “studious to the process” of gustatory interactions, according to Conrad Meers, of Last Best Brewing and Distilling. The balancing of sweet, sour and bitter, or understanding how shaking or stirring can affect the mouthfeel of a mixture, all come with diligence. Cocktails, like wine and cuisine, impress because of balance and structure. Certain ingredients, like anything anise, can easily overtake other more subtle flavours and must be used carefully. Still, Andy Britton, formerly of The Nash’s Off Cut Bar, but now of The Last Straw, believes that achieving balance requires “elevating ingredients,” but also “preserving their integrity,” which includes respecting where they come from and how they affect the senses. In his Vieux Carre Noire, Britton eases the vaporous heat of cognac by lengthening it with bourbon and amari. He also uses a homemade tonka bean cordial to really compound and accentuate the dessert-like notes in the three liquors.

AUG UST 12-1 4, 2 017

As much as cocktails may carry the signature of their particular maker and his or her preferences, “every good cocktail should have a story,” says Mackenzie Ouellette of Charcut. Like much of what Charcut does in celebrating the local, Ouellette’s Hazelwood Mill pays homage to an Alberta grain elevator, and at the same time celebrates an underappreciated spirit like grappa. Imagine the austerity of a grain elevator, baking in the sun, surrounded by the subtle fragrance of a prairie cereal crop. But, whether a story transports you into your own memory, or to a faraway bar a century ago, or simply makes you appreciate the thoughtful execution by the bartender, remember that his or her main objective is to keep you in your seat, enlightened hopefully, tipsy absolutely.

The Devonian

Vieux Carré Noir

2 oz. Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc

1 oz. Hennessy V.S. cognac

1 oz. Ransom Dry Vermouth

1 oz. Woodford Reserve bourbon

1/2 oz. St. Germain Elderflower Liqueur

1 oz. Amaro Lucano

1/4 oz. Maraschino Liqueur

1 t. or bar spoon of Tonka Cherry Cordial Ask Andy for the recipe, otherwise, use: 1 t. high-quality grenadine, 2 drops chocolate bitters, 2 drops cherry bitters, and 1 drop highquality vanilla extract.

Combine all ingredients in a stirring vessel and stir with ice until diluted, then strain into a chilled coupe glass and garnish with a twist of lime zest.

Hazelwood Mill

1 dash Peychaud’s Bitters

Stir ingredients in a shaker with ice for 20-30 seconds to achieve wanted dilution, strain into a rocks glass over a large ice cube, and garnish with a twist of lemon zest.

1-1/4 oz. Marolo Grappa di Milla 3/4 oz. Cointreau

Dos Amigos

1/2 oz. Lemon Juice

1oz. Tequila

1/2 oz. Chamomile Simple Syrup (recipe below)

1oz. Mezcal

Garnish: Chamomile Floweret

1/2 oz. Lillet Blanc

In a shaker, add all of the ingredients and shake well with ice. Double strain into a coupe glass; garnish with a single chamomile floweret.

1/2 oz. Agave

Chamomile Simple Syrup 4 c. chamomile tea leaves 8 c. water

1 oz. Lime juice Smoked paprika and sea salt rim

Rim a highball or rocks glass, add all of the ingredients to a shaker with ice, shake the cocktail and strain over fresh rocks.

YOUR PASSPORT TO CALGARY’S COCKTAIL CULTURE For one weekend in August, Calgary will be turned into a playground for the cocktail curious. Explore a world of workshops, masterclasses, seminars and elaborate parties, hosted amongst some of Calgary’s finest cocktail establishments. Stamp your PEELED passport as you tour our partnered venues with exclusive access to a cocktail menu created by some of Calgary’s most revered bartenders and mixologists. FEATURING GUESTS Jack McGarry of Dead Rabbit NYC Dale DeGroff aka King Cocktail

VENUE PARTNERS The Bank & Baron • The Derrick Gin Mill • The Guild Hotel Arts • Kline / Harris • Last Best • Milk Tiger Model Citizen • Native Tongues • One18 Empire Ox Bar de Tapas • Proof • Ricardo’s • Sub Rosa

2 c. honey

Bring water and honey to a boil, reduce heat and add chamomile tea. Simmer until the liquid is reduced by 1/3. Makes approximately 5-1/2 cups, so feel free to decrease your proportions.

Mike Roberson is a beverage connoisseur: from soda fountain and cask to still and udder, he loves to imbibe. Which might account for his being a bartender at Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse!

TICKETS ON SALE NOW more information at calgarycocktailfestival.com



get this collector’s dream A lot of cooks like to collect Le Creuset and this limited-edition Maple Leaf Round French Oven – made exclusively for the Canadian market – may be the most collectable piece yet. Each stainless steel knob is individually numbered in sequential order leading up to product number 1867 – the year of our Confederation. The Maple Leaf mould for the lids was used to produce exactly 1,867 units before being destroyed. Each dutch oven is packaged in a limited-edition box with an accompanying booklet, display medallion engraved with the maple leaf and anniversary years 1867 and 2017 and the Le Creuset logo plus a certificate of authenticity and a frameworthy 11.5 x 11.5-inch commemorative map of Canada. Oh Canada indeed. This truly is for Canada’s 150th. Le Creuset’s Maple Leaf Round French Oven, $500, Le Creuset Boutique, Chinook Centre

SCOBY-do Summer can easily slip away seeing you sipping the same old ice tea, lemonade and sugary sodas. Time to change it up a bit. Try the natural fizz of kombucha as a refreshingly tangy ice tea alternative. It’s made by fermenting sweetened tea using kombucha cultures that digest the sugars. The culture or SCOBY– symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast – generates antioxidants and probiotics as well as the fizz. This fermentation jar will make DIY kombucha easy. With its filter and tap valve it allows you to brew and store in one attractive and highly functional container. The rewritable label at the top also makes it easy to identify and date each batch. Work your way through the recipe booklet included and make it a SCOBY-do summer. Tip: Kombucha makes an excellent cocktail base as well. Mortier Pilon Kombucha Brewing Jar, 5L, $69.99, Community Natural Foods

way cooler It’s cool to be Canadian this year (and every year) and if you have this stylish cooler in your back yard you will be the coolest of us all. Red is the patriotic choice but it also comes in pink, orange and navy. With an 80-quart capacity, handy dual-sided lid, retro bottle opener and locking castor wheels you can keep the party rolling. Whether you’re hosting a backyard barbecue or Canada Day block party blast-off, this beauty will keep things way cooler. Brander Cooler on the Go, $229.99, Barbecues Galore



Karen Anderson


the real canadian bacon? As the perfect food, pork bacon has a lot of imitators. Turkey and beef bacon have great flavour but they leave one wanting in terms of texture. Vegan coconut bacon improves on them with serious umami and extra crispy texture. And now, looking a little further upstream, salmon is making a run for it as the new bacon on the block. Salmon tastes great smoked. It has a toothsome chewy texture. And, it also wins in the ultimate bacon test – it tastes great tucked in with lettuce and tomatoes in a toasted sandwich. Use it to rock your next Eggs Benedict, add it to summer’s fresh corn chowder, chop it into your next salade niçoise, or just enjoy it with your lazy Sunday morning eggs over easy. Simply West Coast Wild Keta Bacon-Style Salmon Bacon, $7.29/250 g., Blush Lane Organic Market

maple leaves and linens for life In April, Inspirati Fine Linens and Home Essentials owner Wendy Brownie took a train from Paris to Gérardmer in northeastern France to see the maple leaf tea towel she designed being woven at the Le Jacquard Français factory. The idea came to her last fall when she sketched a fallen leaf while on holiday in Tofino. Profits from the sale of the tea towels will go to the Me to We youth empowerment programs. From a whimsical sketch to a worthwhile contribution, the folks at Le Jacquard Français were so impressed with Wendy’s design they are also selling them at their stores in Paris. Canada 150 tea towel, $40, Inspirati Fine Linens and Home Essentials

basket case With a “townie” bike and this easy release bicycle basket from Electra you can do a lot. Ride to your favourite deli or bakery to pick up a picnic in less time than it takes to find a parking spot. Ride along Calgary’s 1000 kilometers of bike pathways to a gorgeous park to have your picnic (St. Patrick’s, Princes Island, Riley Park, Edworthy, Fish Creek, North Glenmore, Stanley Park and Weasel Head Flats are a few that are easy to get to on a cruiser bike). Remember to also use those fabulous dedicated downtown lanes that were created to make ours a bike friendly city. As you can see, this all adds up to a pretty clear case for buying yourself a bicycle basket. Electra Quick Release Basket, $59.99, Bow Cycle

Karen Anderson is the owner of Alberta Food Tours.



one ingredient

Julie Van Rosendaal


Brown liquor has become a trend in recent years in restaurants and speakeasy-style bars. Canadian and American whisky/ey, bourbon, rye and scotch are collectively referred to as “brown liquor,” due to their similarities, lack of easy distinction between them, and colour. What truly distinguishes them from one another? Mostly grains and geography. Brown liquor is brown because it has spent time in wood barrels, but generally speaking, it’s all whisky/ey. To clarify the spelling, it has an “e” before the “y” in the United States and Ireland – countries that have an “e” in their names – and none in Scotland or Canada, countries that have no “e” in their names. In order to call itself bourbon, whiskey’s mash – the grain from which it’s distilled – must contain at least 51 percent corn. Scotch is differentiated geographically – it’s whisky that’s made in Scotland, mostly from malted barley. Rye is arguably the most abrasive of the bunch, more often topped with Coke than sipped on the rocks. In the U.S., American rye whiskey must be distilled from at least 51 percent rye, whereas Canadian whiskies are made with multiple grains and may or may not contain any rye. (The grains used in the mash are generally declared on the label.) By law, liquor must spend a minimum of three years in a barrel before it can be called whisky/ey of any kind – it’s the distillation and barreling that give each batch a unique character. Most are blended from more than one barrel, unless the liquor is labelled single-barrel; a single malt is made using malted barley and comes from one distillery (but still a blend of barrels). Irish whiskey is also made with barley, but because not all of it is malted, it has a lighter flavour.

Clear as whisky? While some love the sweet intensity of all of the above brown liquors, others can’t take their bracing burn. If you don’t like to sip whiskies, you may like to use butter, sugar, beans or slow-roasted ribs as a whisky delivery service. Their malty sweetness and aroma of wood smoke and peat add a new dimension to cakes (brush them with liquor, once baked, fruitcake-style), barbecue sauces and other sticky meat glazes, gravies, marmalade, apple pie, fruit cobblers and crisps, chocolate and caramel. A little goes a long way, so you can even add a capful to flavour cream before whipping it to dollop over desserts. When choosing brown liquor to put in your food rather than serve with it, malt whiskies can be more intense in flavour than grain whiskies. I tend to go for bourbon in baking because of its smoothness (compared to rye), and affordability (compared to scotch), and because “bourbon brownies” sounds better than “rye brownies,” but generally you can use whatever bottle is in the cupboard.

Bourbon Blueberry Crisp

S AV O U R YO U R SU M M ER Make the most of your summer days with COBS Bre ad’s fresh Hamburger & Hot Dog Buns –

All kinds of fruit go well with bourbon, from peaches and pears to cherries and blueberries. Experiment with whatever is in season, and don’t be afraid to combine a few varieties, especially when it comes to juicy stone fruits and berries. Bake this crisp in a pie plate, or divide the fruit and crumble topping between smaller or individual baking dishes. Serve your bubbling crisp topped with whipped cream sweetened with brown sugar – and spiked with more bourbon. 3 c. fresh or frozen blueberries 1/3 c. sugar 2 T. flour 1/4 c. bourbon

Crumble: 1/2 c. quick or old-fashioned oats 1/4 c. sliced almonds (optional)

bake d from scratch ever y day,

1/4 c. all-purpose or whole wheat flour

with no adde d preser vatives.

1/4 c. butter, cut into pieces

1/4 c. packed brown sugar 1/4 t. cinnamon 1/4 t. salt




Preheat the oven to 350°F. In a medium bowl, toss the blueberries with the sugar and flour until well blended. Pour into a pie plate (or divide between smaller or individual baking dishes), sprinkling any sugar that has collected in the bottom of the bowl over the fruit. Drizzle with the bourbon. In the same bowl, combine the crumble ingredients and blend with a fork or your fingers until well combined and crumbly. Sprinkle over the fruit and bake for 40-50 minutes, or until golden and bubbly around the edges. Serves 6.

Pecan Waffles with Caramelized Bourbon Bananas Yes, you can incorporate brown liquor into a leisurely weekend brunch. Waffles: 2 c. all-purpose flour 2 T. sugar 2 t. baking powder 1/4 t. salt 1-1/2 c. milk 2 large eggs 1/4 c. canola oil or melted butter 1 t. vanilla 1/2 c. chopped, toasted pecans (optional)

Bourbon Bananas: 2 T. butter 1-2 bananas, sliced 2 T. brown sugar 1 T. maple syrup 1 T. bourbon or other whisky

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. In a small bowl, whisk together the milk, eggs, oil or butter and vanilla. Add the liquid ingredients to the dry ingredients and whisk just until blended. Stir in the pecans, if you’re using them. Preheat your waffle iron and spray it with nonstick spray or brush it with oil. Ladle in some batter – about 1/2 cup, or however much you usually cook at a time – close the lid and cook according to the manufacturer’s instructions, until golden and crisp. Serve immediately, or keep warm on a rack set on a baking sheet in a 250°F oven while you cook the rest. To make the bananas, put the butter in a small skillet set over medium-high heat. As it melts, add the bananas and cook for a minute or two, until starting to brown on the edges. Add the brown sugar, syrup and bourbon and bring to a simmer, stirring until the bananas are soft and the syrup mixture thickens. Serve over warm waffles. Serves 4.



Bourbon Pecan Pie Brownies To really take these over the top, serve them with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, doused in bourbon-spiked caramel. Brownies: 1/2 c. butter 1 c. sugar 3/4 c. cocoa 2 large eggs 1 t. vanilla 1/3 c. flour 1/4 t. salt

Pecan pie topping: 1/2 c. packed brown sugar 1/2 c. Roger’s Golden syrup or corn syrup 1/4 c. butter, melted 2 large eggs 2 T. bourbon whiskey

recipe photos by Julie Van Rosendaal

1 c. chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 350°F. In a medium saucepan, melt the butter with the sugar and cocoa over medium heat, stirring until the butter melts and the mixture is well combined. Remove from the heat and cool slightly, then stir in the eggs and vanilla, and then the flour and salt. Pour into a parchment-lined 8x8-inch pan, smoothing the top. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until just set; remove from the oven and let cool completely. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, stir together the brown sugar, syrup, butter, eggs and bourbon until smooth. Stir in the pecans and pour over the brownie base. Bake for 30 minutes, or until golden and set. Let cool completely, then refrigerate for at least two hours before cutting. Makes 9-16 brownies. continued on page 16 CITYPALATE.ca JULY AUGUST 2017


one ingredient COOKING WITH BROWN LIQUOR continued from page 15

Maple Whisky and Nanking Cherry BBQ Sauce Highwood Distillers in High River makes an intense maple whisky that pairs well with tart Nanking cherry juice – if you don’t have them growing in your yard, start with about 2 cups of bottled cherry juice. 8 c. Nanking cherries, washed and stemmed 1/2 c. sugar 1 c. packed brown sugar 1 T. grainy mustard 2 t. garlic powder 1 t. onion powder 1/2 t. ground ginger 1 t. kosher salt 1/2 t. black pepper 1-1/2 c. Highwood Distillers maple whisky, or 1 c. whisky + 1/2 c. pure maple syrup

In a large saucepan, combine the cherries and sugar. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until cherries have given up their juice. Remove from heat and push through a sieve to remove skins and pits. Discard the solids. Return the cherry juice to the saucepan, add the remaining ingredients except the whisky, and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to a simmer and add 1 c. maple whisky. Continue to simmer until slightly thickened. Remove from the heat and stir in the remaining 1/2 c. whisky. Cool and refrigerate. Then slather the sauce on your grilled pork ribs, or beef ribs, or just about anything you’re grilling.

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Bourbon Baked Beans Smoky baked beans simmered with bourbon makes a natural pairing. Starting with dry beans is worth your while – it takes a little extra time, but not much effort. 2 c. dry navy (little white) beans 1 small onion, finely chopped 2-3 garlic cloves, crushed 3/4 c. ketchup 1/4 c. packed brown sugar 1/4 c. molasses

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1/4 c. bourbon 2 T. grainy mustard 2 T. balsamic vinegar 1 t. each salt and freshly ground pepper 1 ham bone, smoked pork hock or handful of diced ham (optional)

Preheat the oven to 325°F. If you want to kick-start the bean cooking process by soaking them, cover them with water and leave them overnight; otherwise just place the dry beans in a medium pot, add enough water to cover by a couple of inches and bring to a simmer. Cook for about an hour, until tender but still a bit firm to the bite. Drain, reserving the cooking water. Transfer the beans to your bean pot (or a heavy baking dish) and add the onion, garlic, ketchup, brown sugar, molasses, bourbon, mustard, balsamic, salt and pepper. Tuck in the ham bone or stir in the chopped ham. Add 2 cups of the leftover cooking water (add regular water to top it up if you need to) and stir to combine. Cover and bake for 3-4 hours, uncovering for the last hour or so, or until the beans are tender and the sauce is thick and sticky around the edges. If the beans seem too dry, add a bit more water. Serves 8.

Julie Van Rosendaal is a cookbook author and blogs at dinnerwithjulie.com






















feeding people

Erin Lawrence


The all-the-rage berry you’ve never heard of. “Have you seen any of these?” Like a culinary detective hunting an elusive suspect, I flash a photo at a clerk at the market. “Sorry, no.” I try again next door. “I’m looking for these. Know who’s got any?” “Can’t help you.” I get similar reactions from people all over the market until I run out of fruit stands. Yes, fruit stands. I’m looking for a berry, and though it’s said to be one of the most prolific in Alberta and western Canada, I’m met with inquisitive looks every time I ask about it.


The haskap berry is poised to become the next superfruit, depending on what you read. It’s also got a reputation for having a flavour like nothing you’ve ever tasted, as if a raspberry, a blueberry and some mysterious tropical fruit all got together and threw a summer backyard party in your mouth. A haskap berry resembles a larger and more elliptical blueberry. It has the same mottled violet-cobalt skin you’d find on the outside of a blueberry, but it can grow up to 4 cm long. After hearing tales of the haskap berry in culinary circles, I wanted to try it for myself. But getting my hands on haskaps in Calgary proved much more challenging than I’d expected. You can thank a plant scientist in Saskatchewan for introducing haskap berries to most of North America. Bob Bors works for the University of Saskatchewan in the Plant Sciences Department, and many people in this trade refer to him as the Grandfather of Haskap. A fruit breeder by profession, he’s made his mark on the world by being strategic when it came to choosing his plant specialization. Wanting to stand out from the crowd, he elected not to focus on more common berries, but to find something unique and unusual – haskaps.

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“They actually grow in Canada north of where most of our cities are,” says Bors. “They’re out there in Alberta, they’re around Fort McMurray and they’re north of Prince Albert in Saskatchewan. They’re in the boreal forest. I know there’s been maybe two to three million plants sold. We’re trying to grow it all across the country.” Haskap berries have their origins in Japan and Russia. “Haskap” is actually the Japanese name for Lonicera caerulea, also known as blue honeysuckle, or honeyberry. It loves cold winters and can grow quickly in shorter summers,

making it ideally suited to the Canadian prairies. Gardeners, both home-based and commercial, have been buying the plants. Despite that, finding a basket of these unusual berries is an exercise in perseverance. Hunting them in the winter is pointless – you’d need to find them frozen, and that’s next to impossible in Calgary. I couldn’t find anywhere that stocks them. But even come summer, getting fresh berries is tough. I ask the expert what gives. “It’s because they’re brand new,” muses Bors. “The people who have had them long enough to make berries (commercial producers) – there’s only a few of them. There’s probably been two and a half or three million plants sold in Canada over the last decade, but almost all of that is just in the last three or four years.” Determined to somehow sample the haskap’s flavour, I reach out to growers in Canada and the USA and hear almost nothing back. Like the berry, the growers keep a low profile. I finally connect with Bernis Ingvaldson who runs the website honeyberryusa.com and has a haskap farm in Minnesota. I ask her what a haskap tastes like. “I call it a mystery berry,” Ingvaldson says, laughing. “If you take all your favourite fruits and put them in the blender and now comes this mystery berry flavour – you cannot quite put your finger on it.” These elusive berries are also meant to be good for you. Haskap berries are said to be high in Vitamin C and Vitamin A, as well as high in fibre and potassium. They’re also packed with anti-oxidants. Some of the compounds in the haskap have been found to have anti-inflammatory properties. One of Bors’ graduate students is currently working on a study on the health benefits of the haskap. Despite my research and interviews, at this point in my investigation, I’ve not yet been able to get my hands on the berries or sample their enigmatic flavour. Ingvaldson tells me about a small shop in Saskatchewan that sells haskap jams, syrups and preserves.

A week after I place an order with SaskMade Marketplace in Saskatoon, a package of bottles and jars arrives. I force myself to wait, and gather a small group of friends and family to join me in the inaugural tasting. I dip a spoon in a jar of Haskap Topping and pull out a syrupy sauce with big pieces of soft berry. The flavour is intense – sweet, tart and mouth-filling. The boldness of the haskap is like nothing I’ve ever tried; it’s as if you

picked the sweetest, ripest raspberries and strawberries and cooked them down to their very essence, then added mango and a hint of pineapple. It’s glorious. I dip my spoon in again. With that jar of topping giving the first clues about what the berries themselves will taste like, and with Bors’ information that sales of the plants are up, I’m hopeful haskap berries might eventually become more plentiful in Calgary.

Grilled Brie with Haskap 1 8-oz. wheel brie cheese 1/4 c. haskap topping or haskap jam cedar plank

Heat your grill to about 300°F. (you can also do this in the oven if you wish). Soak a cedar plank for 20-30 minutes in cold water. Dry well and rub with olive oil. Slice the top third of the wheel of brie off and set aside. Set the bottom portion of the brie on the plank and spread the exposed cheese with haskap topping. Set the top back on (the cheese will seal itself back up if you take care not to spread topping all the way to the edges). Set the plank on the grill and close the lid. Grill it for about 8-10 minutes, checking to make sure the cheese isn’t melting. The cheese is ready when it’s warmed through, and soft. Serve with crackers or crusty bread. The best part of making this is not telling your friends what the berry filling is. The unique taste will have everyone wondering about the recipe!

Getting hold of haskap berries: This summer they may well show up at the markets. Order jam, topping, and syrup at saskmade.myshopify.com

Order jam, toppings, dried berries, tea and juice from haskapa.com

Better yet... you can grow your own. Buy haskap plants at both Greengate and Sunnyside Garden Centres. Erin is a Calgary TV producer and freelance writer. Check her website: ErinLYYC.com



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It doesn’t matter how you swig it, you can’t walk into a restaurant or cocktail bar – or, likely, even your own house – these days and not find a bottle of amber-coloured alcohol ready to be shaken or stirred into a craft cocktail. A few years ago, if a person talked about brown liquor cocktails, they would generally be referring to a member of the whisky family. However, as Alberta’s cocktail and micro-distillery scene continues to grow, people are playing around with plenty more than simply peaty or smoky spirits. From small-batch dark rums to the often-overlooked cognac, here is a list of barrel-aged spirits and some creative cocktail recipes to get you mixing like a pro at home.




This is a fairly complicated family of booze to explain, so here’s the simplest breakdown possible.

The concept of using cognac in a cocktail isn’t necessarily new to barkeeps who know their classics, but budding home bartenders will still have a thing or two to learn about this French grape-based spirit. After the grapes are pressed and the juice fermented, the liquid is distilled in copper stills and then must be aged for two years before being sold.

The latest trend in the distilling world is the technique of aging gin. Different distilleries will start by producing their gin using whatever their typical botanicals may be. Then, instead of bottling, the liquor is transferred into whisky barrels and aged. Banff’s Park Distillery, for example, uses old Jack Daniels barrels to age its signature gin for six months. The resulting spirit is unlike any of the aforementioned, exuding myriad flavours associated with gin and whisky – pine, caramel and cedar. This relatively new type of spirit is best experimented with in simple applications like gin and tonics or a straight-up martini.

SCOTCH is a type of whisky that is produced in Scotland using primarily malted barley. It’s a spirit that can boast intense smoky or leathery notes and is, arguably, the least suitable for making a cocktail. BOURBON is a kind of American whiskey that is almost exclusively produced in Kentucky. It’s distilled using at least 51% corn in its mash with a mix of grains. It must be aged in charred oak barrels, but unlike other types of whiskey, it doesn’t have a minimum aging period, though most quality varieties are aged for at least two years. Sub Rosa’s Austin Purvis says: “I love working with brown liquor because it packs such a serious punch. Whisky, rye and bourbon all lend themselves really well to classic cocktails as well as more forward-thinking drinks. I enjoy experimenting with different flavour combinations and developing my own unique takes on everything from an Old Fashioned to a Manhattan.” As its name implies, RYE WHISKEY is made using 51% or more rye in the distilling process. Because it’s primarily grain-based, this spirit is typically a lot spicier than its Kentucky cousin. It’s aged for a minimum of two years. To make things slightly more confusing, Canadian rye whisky is usually produced using hardly any rye and is more in line with American bourbon-distilling standards. Alberta Premium is one notable exception, which is produced with 100% rye. “Personally, I love whisky cocktails because I think it’s a great way for people to taste whisky without being intimidated by its history of being a cowboy spirit,” says Hayden Block owner, Ian Walsh. “The cocktails I enjoy are made not trying to hide the whisky taste, but to enhance or dress up the spirit.”



“Cognac is one of the most underrated brown spirits, since most people just associate it with after-dinner drinking,” points out Model Milk’s bar manager, Madeleine MacDonald. “Since it’s made from grapes, it adds a rich, sweet note that a whisky cannot. It’s diverse and can be enjoyed in stirred drinks like a Corpse Reviver ll or in shaken ones like a Sidecar.”

RUM With a sugar base, rum – regardless of its colour gradient – is a strong spirit produced with the absence of grain. There are plenty of varieties of this spirit that can be aged for any time and infused with any number of spices like cinnamon or allspice. A darker rum indicates the use of molasses and/or longer barrel aging. Though most famous for its distilling origins in the Caribbean, rum is made in other places like Mexico and even here in Canada at Ironworks Distillery in Lunenberg, Nova Scotia. Tiki bars have had a notable resurgence in North America in the past few years which has helped rum step outside of its holiday eggnog shackles, showing folks that it’s also a playful spirit that easily mixes its way into bright, summery drinks. Ricardo’s Hideaway will have you diving into good rummy drinks and good food, all on a Caribbean theme.

TEQUILA AND MEZCAL Even though both spirits are made from agave and all tequila is technically a type of mezcal, all mezcal is not tequila. So, why is that? Much like cognac can only be called cognac when it’s produced in a particular region of France, tequila is only made using the blue agave plant in five small Mexican regions while mezcal is produced all over the country. Most of us are familiar with tequila, so let’s focus on the lesser-known mezcal. This spirit boasts remarkable smokey notes as the agave plants are cooked in pits filled with charcoal, rocks and wood before being distilled in clay pots. Three different levels of aging (0-2 months, 2-12 months and more than 1 year) can further add to its intensity. Look for the name “añejo” for mezcals that have been aged the longest. “I enjoy the adaptability of mezcal and the places it can be used in creating a smokey twist on a classic cocktail. I also find it to be one of the most nuanced spirits on the market,” says Dylan Macleod, bar manager at Native Tongues Taqueria. “Even with two different producers, everything comes out in the spirit. Terroir, water source, human intervention… everything plays a hand.” continued on page 24



Fun and Tasty Brown Booze Cocktails

continued from page 22

All recipes make one cocktail.

Whiskey Smash

West Coast Negroni

The Burnley Miner

Love’s Labour’s Lost

Ian Walsh, Hayden Block This classic drink is as simple to make as it is to drink. It’s almost too easy to have too many.

Nathan Newman, The Derrick Gin Mill and Kitchen Canada’s premier gin bar is always experimenting with new kinds of gin. This take on the booze-forward Italian beverage uses some interesting B.C. spirits for a Canadian spin.

Darren Fabian, Alloy Restaurant See how bourbon can work together with a classic tea blend to create a unique spin on the southern summer staple, sweet tea.

Dylan Macleod, Native Tongues Taqueria The smokey signature liquor of Mexico helps put a Latin American spin on everyone’s favourite party starter cocktail, the French 75.

1 small rosemary sprig

1 oz. Peloton de la Muerte mezcal

1 t. simple syrup

1/2 oz. Peach Syrup (recipe follows)

2 lemon wedges

1/2 oz. fresh lime juice

2 oz. Elijah Craig whiskey 1 oz. simple syrup 4 mint leaves 1/2 lemon, cubed

1 oz. Odd Society Spirits Oaken Wallflower Gin

3 dashes of Angostura bitters

1/2 ounce Aperol

1-1/2 oz. Maker’s Mark

3 dashes Bittercube Cherry Bark Vanilla bitters

1/2 Odd Society Bittersweet Vermouth

1/2 oz. Benedictine

prosecco, enough to top up

grapefruit peel or fresh rosemary for garnish

2 oz. lavender Earl Grey tea

lime peel for garnish

Pour all ingredients into a large mixing glass, stir and strain into a rocks glass over a large Ice cube. Garnish with grapefruit peel or rosemary.

fresh rosemary sprig for garnish

In a cocktail shaker, combine mezcal, peach syrup, lime juice and bitters.

Place all ingredients into a shaker and muddle. Add ice and shake well. Strain into a rocks glass filled with ice and enjoy.

(If you don’t have access to large ice cubes at home, chill the glass in the freezer before preparing the cocktail)

Coat rosemary sprig with simple syrup and use a small blow torch to torch until brown. Alternatively, place the sprig in the oven on high broil until leaves begin to char and sugar caramelizes. Remove the leaves from the stem, place into a cocktail shaker with lemon wedges and liquids. Muddle, shake over ice and then double strain into a rocks glass. Garnish with fresh rosemary.

Shake with ice, then fine-strain into a coupe or flute. Top with approximately 3 oz. of prosecco. Garnish with lime peel and serve. Peach Syrup: combine 4 c. sliced peaches (fresh or frozen), 2 c. water and 2 c. sugar in a saucepan and simmer for 15 minutes. Cool with the peaches in it, then strain and store in the refrigerator to use as desired.

Your next cocktail party just got tastier! The World’s Best Whiskies, IMHO!

1. Lot 40 Single Copper Pot Still – This is the best bang for your buck Canadian whisky, hands down, and it’s also 100% Rye. $49

(That would be the humble opinion of Kensington Wine Market’s owner, Andrew Ferguson, AKA Scotch Guy, and master of the world’s whiskies)

2. Nikka Pure Malt Black – A Japanese blended malt with a touch of peat and sherry and lots of layers. Love the bottle! $70

Selection of the Best Whiskies in the world is a very subjective matter. I’ve restricted my choices to the best whiskies available in Alberta across a range of styles. While age can be a sign of quality, it is not a guarantee! Nor is price. The price points of my selections vary from $40 to $960, so there is something for everyone…








3. Wyoming Whiskey Small Batch Bourbon – You don’t have to make bourbon in Kentucky, but it has to be made in the U.S., and we think Wyoming makes one of the best. $70 4. Forty Creek Confederation Oak – Matured in oak trees planted around the time of Confederation, this is one of Canada’s best whiskies. $71






5. Michter’s US*1 Sour Mash – Not strictly a bourbon, but it’s made in that style and one of my favourite American whiskies! $85 6. Blanton’s Gold Edition Bourbon – This is a single barrel bourbon, always changing, but without exception always one of the best bourbons around. $99 7. Amrut Intermediate Sherry – This big fruity Indian single malt has solidified Amrut’s reputation as one of the world’s best whisky makers! $110 8. Springbank 15 Year – A benchmark Scotch whisky with a






Photo by Lucia Kubackova

Smoked Lemonade


The Knight We Met

The Bad Mind

Austin Purvis, Sub Rosa This slightly smokey, summery cocktail is nothing like the lemonade your mother used to make. That’s for damn sure!

Madeleine MacDonald, Model Milk If you’re only using cognac as an after-dinner drink, then let this simple way to make cognac shine in a house-made tonic to help open your mind.

1-1/2 oz. Laphroaig Quarter Cask Scotch Whisky

2 oz. cognac

David Bain, Bridgette Bar With the help of some bittersweet grapefruit, lemon and red tea simple syrup, the bold flavour profiles of whiskey and rum balance each other in this pleasant sipper.

Stephen Phipps, Ricardo’s Hideaway Summertime means rum time. This recipe uses an infused vinegar and a berry simple syrup and the result is one of the most interesting, refreshing drinks you’ll have all summer.

1 oz. Buffalo Trace

2 oz. Coruba rum

1 oz. good quality dark rum

3/4 oz. Jerk Vinegar (recipe follows)

3/4 oz. fresh grapefruit juice 1/4 oz. fresh lemon juice

1-1/4 oz. Strawberry Tobacco Syrup (recipe follows)

1/2 oz. “Hopped” Rooibos Tea Simple Syrup (recipe follows)

Stir all ingredients together and serve over crushed ice in a rocks glass.

2 dashes lime bitters

Jerk Vinegar:

Place all ingredients in a shaker, fill with ice and shake well. Strain into a chilled coupe and serve. Optional garnish: grapefruit peel

3 cinnamon sticks, broken into pieces

1 oz. Model Milk Tonic Syrup (recipe follows)

1/4 oz. water

1 dash lime

1/2 oz. fresh lemon juice

1 dash Angostura bitters

1/2 oz. Rosemary Syrup (recipe follows) 2 dashes Black Cloud Charred Cedar bitters

Combine all ingredients in a rocks glass with ice. Top with soda and stir.

1 dash cranberry bitters

Model Milk Tonic Syrup:

fresh rosemary sprig for garnish

4 c. water

Build the drink in a mixing glass and stir with ice to chill. Strain into a rocks glass over fresh ice. Garnish with the rosemary sprig.

3 T. citric acid 3 T cinchona bark (Silk Road Spice Merchants)

1 T. whole allspice 1/4 t. grated nutmeg

Rosemary Syrup:

3 stalks lemongrass (white bulb only, roughly chopped)

“Hopped” Rooibos Tea Simple Syrup: 6 c. purified water

1 T. black peppercorn

2 c. water

3 limes, zested and juiced

5 T. rooibos tea leaves

1/4 c. peeled and roughly chopped ginger

2 c. sugar

4 c. sugar

Put everything except the sugar into a pot and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 15 min. Strain the solids, add the sugar and continue to heat until the sugar has dissolved. Cool and store for up to 2 weeks in the fridge to use as desired.

2 T. cascade hops (pellets can be purchased at most home beer stores in Calgary)

1 fresh Thai chile, seeded

4 fresh rosemary sprigs

4 c. white sugar

Preheat oven to 250°F. Place all ingredients, except the Thai chile and vinegar, in the oven and toast for roughly 1 minute. Once toasted, add the vinegar and turn the heat down to 150°F. Stir to incorporate and immediately turn off heat and let cool. Once cool, strain back into the apple cider vinegar bottle.

Combine water and sugar in a saucepan and heat until the sugar is dissolved. Add the rosemary and simmer for 30 minutes. Cool, strain out the rosemary and refrigerate. Use as desired.

touch of peat and a rich maritime character. It hails from Scotland’s oldest family-owned and most traditional distillery. $115 9. Ardbeg Corryvreckan – Partially matured in French oak this is one of Islay’s best whiskies. It’s decadent and spicy, while maintaining Ardbeg’s peaty backbone. $120 10. Compass Box The Lost Blend – Compass Box is leading the charge to make blended whiskies cool again! This blended malt is very creamy, waxy and savoury. $121 11. Masterson’s 10 Year Straight Rye – A big dark and spicy 100% rye, made in Calgary at Alberta Distillers, bottled at 35 Maple Street in Sonoma, California, and shipped around the world, including here. $135

Place all but the sugar in a pot and bring to a boil. Let the liquid reduce by 1/3, then strain the solids and add the sugar. Heat until the sugar has dissolved. Store in the fridge to use as desired.

12. Old Pulteney 21 Year – This whisky is creamy, fruity and very maritime, though there is no trace of smoke… sadly, the whisky is being discontinued! $190 13. Balvenie 15 Year Single Barrel – Always bottled from a single cask, the whisky is heavily sherried with dark fruits, chocolate and earthy tones. Can be hard to come by! $195 14. Kavalan Solist Peaty – This is a lush Taiwanese whisky matured in casks, which previously held peated single malt Scotch. It is very seductive and almost sinful! $215 15. Redbreast 21 Year – Single pot still is the most Irish of whiskey styles and Redbreast 21 Year is the king of pot still whiskies! $220 16. Glendronach 21 Year Parliament – Big sherry tones, candied fruits, milk chocolate, leather and tobacco, but also silky! $220 17. Glengoyne 25 Year – This is the new Macallan 25, bottled at a higher strength at 48%, at 1/4 the price. Every bar should have a bottle! $410 18. Teeling 24 Year – One of the oldest Teeling Single Malts ever bottled and highly sought after. This Irish single malt is for the serious whiskey connoisseur. $510

950 mL bottle organic apple cider vinegar

Strawberry Tobacco Syrup: 3 c. quartered strawberries 6 c. water 1 T. pipe tobacco (if the tobacco sounds a little too unusual, you can leave it out, but your drink will not have the subtle smokiness) white sugar

In a medium pot over high heat, boil the strawberries and water until soft. Put into a blender and blend. Strain the mixture until you have 4 cups of strawberry purée-like water. Add the tobacco and let sit for one hour. Strain the tobacco out and add enough sugar to create a simple syrup with a 1:1 ratio. Simmer until sugar is dissolved, then let cool. ✤

19. Glenfarclas 30 Year – This whisky is sublime, time has softened all its edges and imbued it with layers of delicate fruits and chocolate. $615 20. Highland Park 30 Year – Is getting harder and harder to find, and the price is no less dear. This whisky is replete with the silkiest honey, tropical fruits and a gentle peaty maritime smoke. $960 ✤ All prices are approximate. 16




Dan Clapson is a writer and restaurant critic based in Calgary. He loves the Prairie food scene almost as much as he loves his pet parrot, Baub.




by Shelley Boettcher

When many of us think about where to find Calgary’s best eats, we picture more established neighbourhoods, such as Mission, the Beltline or Bowness. But maybe you live or work in one of the city’s newer communities: Aspen Woods, for instance, Royal Oak, Seton or West Springs. Then you want to find delicious drinks and nosh a little closer to home. Or perhaps you just want an excuse for a culinary field trip to a new-ish corner of the city. We know you’ll find big-box stores and massive chain eateries in many of these neighbourhoods. But you’ll also find smaller, independent gems, with fine eats and a friendly vibe. With that in mind, here’s a short guide to kick-start your exploration. We don’t have every wonderful place here. Nor do we include every new community – time and space don’t allow it – but if you use this as a starting point and then explore, you’ll find your own go-to spots. Crave Cookies and Cupcakes, Aspen Woods

West Springs Located in the southwest quadrant of the city, West Springs was established in 2001 and has quickly become a major hotspot for good food and wine in Calgary. Begin your day with breakfast at Ace Coffee & Diner. There’s a big list of healthy-ish options for kids, and grownups will love all-day breakfast: buttermilk pancakes, BLTs, omelettes, you name it. There’s lunch, too, and the coffee comes from Rosso Coffee Roasters. For dinner, try Vin Room West. With its vast list of carefully chosen wines, it’s easily one of the best places in the city for serious wine lovers. Plenty of small plates make this a great place for sharing, or for casual meals with friends.

Vin Room West, West Springs

Next door, you’ll find VR Wine, a cozy wine shop that, like its sister restaurant next door, has a thoughtfully curated selection of wines in all prices, from the world’s best wine regions. Order online if you don’t feel like going out; you can get your wines delivered straight to your door. Maybe you want to eat at home, but you don’t feel like cooking? Made Foods has a fine selection of high-quality healthy meals to go. Dishes do change from time to time, but popular choices include the Kansas City BBQ Chicken with fingerling potatoes and roasted vegetables. Or pick up the Springhetti, which features spaghetti noodles with green vegetables, bacon, lemon and herbs. There are breakfast and lunch options, too.

Mercato West, West Springs

Then stop by Blue Door Oil & Vinegar for flavour-infused olive oils and vinegars, toasted sesame oils, French walnut oils and aged balsamic vinegars, all good things for salad or for drizzling atop fresh bread or grilled vegetables. There’s also Mercato West, with its wonderful service, crave-worthy pastas and divine desserts. Buy some Italian cookies to take home; you won’t be able to stop at one. Created by Alykhan Velji Designs (which also did the interior design for Foreign Concept, downtown), Ohh La La Patisserie is a beautiful space. But it’s also one of the best places in the city for macarons, croissants, scones and brioche, as well as some of the prettiest cakes in Calgary. If you live in West Springs, you don’t even have to drive downtown for a good Indian feast. Yuga Traditional Indian Kitchen & Bar has options for vegetarians, gluten-free eaters and meat-eaters alike. The Baingan Bharta, for example, includes roasted eggplant with chopped fresh onion and tomatoes. Or try the chicken korma, a coconut and roasted cashew curry that would go beautifully with a fragrant order of naan, the flatbread that’s irresistible warm.



Ohh La La, West Springs

Aspen Woods You’ll find Aspen Woods by driving west along 17th Avenue SW until you hit 85th Street SW. The community was established in 2001, but the land was annexed back in the 1950s. Good views of the foothills, plus close access to the mountains, make this community popular with many Calgarians. As for us, we love it for the food. Looking for a fix of France? Then stop by Ladybug Bakery and Café for croissants or crêpes, coffee and more. The café is under new ownership; Warwick Barton and his wife, Christine, bought the shop in December 2016, and plan to renovate down the road to add more seating. But, Warwick assures us, all the favourites – including the bake-at-home croissants – will remain on the menu. Not far away, Merlo Vinoteca is a gorgeous wine-shopping experience for anyone obsessed with Italy’s vast wine regions. Stopping at one bottle will be difficult for any serious oenophile.

Royal Oak Nestled in the far northwest, Royal Oak was established in 1998 and starts more or less at Country Hills Blvd. and 112th Avenue NW. In the past couple of years, the community has been growing by leaps and bounds, and new businesses – from grocers to gyms – seem to pop up almost daily. While Royal Oak lost a neighbourhood gem when Las Canarias relocated to 17th Avenue SW, there are still fun independent eating and drinking spots there. There’s Paros Souvla for Greek food, and Empress Palace for dim sum. Tata Sushi and Grill and Roku both offer sushi. There are two Indian restaurants – Dostana and, a short drive away, a Spice-7 location, too. For fine wine and beer to take home, there’s a handy Crowfoot Liquor location. Head to Planet Organic for supplements, groceries and healthy food to go.

Crave Cookies and Cupcakes has a few locations around town, but if you live or work in Aspen Landing, you can get your fix here. Everyone has his or her favourite cupcake, but you can’t go wrong with Peppy Pattie (peppermint icing on dark chocolate cake). If you need staples for home – bread, meats, milk, lunch for work tomorrow – head to Blush Lane Organic Market for groceries and fresh produce.

Seton Situated in the far southeast end of the city, near the new South Health Campus, Seton is still being developed, but by 2030, it’s estimated that roughly 120,000 people will call the community home. Even now, there’s much to offer. The team behind Good Earth Café was quick to see the neighbourhood’s potential – good news for fans of this Calgary company’s wholesome vibe and good caffeine.

Star chef Paul McGreevy is behind the scenes these days at Starbelly Open Kitchen & Lounge, and there’s plenty of buzz around his menus. Try the tuna poke if you want to check out one of North America’s big food trends, or maybe the house-made gnocchetti pasta, the lamb loin or the farmer’s pie, with black lentils, smoked squash and a mashed potato gratin. The Starbelly drinks list is also a winner, featuring an impressive cocktail menu, local beer and lots of Canadian wine. Then there’s Tommyfield Gastro Pub. It has a lively patio (well, on warm days), with breathtaking views of the city. The fish and chips is made with fresh halibut, and, for dessert, try the s’mores for two – you literally cook them yourself, at your table.

Paros Souvla Greek Restaurant, Royal Oak

Grab a healthy Middle Easternstyle lunch or early dinner at Jerusalem Shawarma. The business was started by the AbuFarha brothers, who use recipes their Palestinian grandfather made more than 60 years ago.

When you’re wanting to indulge, head to Brooklyn Pizzeria and Taps for – you guessed it – pizza and beer. Thursday to Saturday, Ceili’s Modern Irish Pub – a chain with its roots in Calgary – is packed with locals looking for music and pub fare. The nachos are always popular, as are the burgers. ✤

Jerusalem Shawarma, Royal Oak

The burgers at Ceili's Modern Irish Pub, Royal Oak

Tommyfield Gastro Pub, Seton

Shelley Boettcher is a local food and wine writer whose work has appeared in magazines and newspapers around the world. Find her at drinkwithme.com, @shelley_wine and @drinkwithmenow. CITYPALATE.ca JULY AUGUST 2017


Dîner en Blanc One of summer’s most welcome events story and photos by Stephanie Arsenault

Fact: there are few things better than a good dinner party. The friends, the food, the wine... throw in some fantastic music and conversation (aided, of course, by the wine), and you’ve got yourself an evening for the books. Now just imagine you have all of the above, but the dinner party is outdoors. With gourmet food, incredible wine, and live music. Also, everything is white; white table linens, attire, and décor… Oh, and there are a few thousand of your closest friends in attendance.

What to expect… Want to take part in the world’s biggest pop-up, alfresco, flash

Enter: Dîner en Blanc. Now in its fourth year in Calgary (it started in 2013, offering a much-needed evening of escape for many flood-affected Calgarians), the notso-secret secret party has quickly become the event of the summer.

city you’re coming from, whether you’d like to take the chartered bus or public transit (the location of the event will not be revealed until moments before you’ve arrived!), and then you’ll choose a table leader. Next, you’ll decide whether you’d like your meal catered or will bring your own food. If you want a catered dinner, you’ll be provided with options from the participating restaurant, from which you can choose. If you’ll be bringing your own food, it must be a multi-course gourmet meal for two, so get creative. At this point, you’ll also order your wine, which you’ll pick up at the event. No beer or hard alcohol is allowed, and while you can purchase wine on site (just in case you didn’t initially order enough), you cannot bring your own.

Dîner en Blanc began back in 1988, when a Parisian named François Pasquier wanted to host a dinner party. His small apartment couldn’t accommodate all of his guests, so Pasquier asked his friends to meet him at Bois de Boulogne, a large park that runs along the edge of the 16th arrondissement in Paris. He also requested that they all wear white, so that those who hadn’t previously met one another would know they were part of the same party. Fast-forward nearly 30 years, and the once tight-knit dinner has evolved to take place in more than 70 countries on six continents, with tens of thousands of participants. It may not be as intimate now as it was originally, but it has a certain je ne sais quoi that makes it so special. It might be the image of a sea of people dressed beautifully in white, carrying tables, chairs, and picnic baskets through a busy, public space. Perhaps it’s the thousands of hands waving napkins high in the air, signifying the beginning of the event, or those same hands lifting bright sparklers in the dark, signifying the opening of the dance floor (when the party really begins). Maybe it’s that low light of late summer evenings, or the conversation and laughter lubricated by French music and too much wine. Whatever that special something is, it’s dreamy.



mob-esque dinner party? First, register on the wait list at calgary.dinerenblanc.com, once registration is open. Invitations are then sent out in three waves, via e-mail, and once you’ve been invited, you’ll need to register yourself and a guest. Payment includes the fee for the evening, and a membership, which gets you priority access to registration for the dinner the following year.

Sorting out the details… When you sign up, you’ll specify which area of the

What to wear… As the name implies, you must wear white. Not cream, offwhite, or anything along those lines; simply wear white. Don’t worry about overdoing it, attendees tend to go all out. You’re most definitely going to find more than one wedding dress, elaborate hat or headpiece, and an assortment of stunning accessories. As long as what you’re wearing is elegant, you’ll be fine. That said, it can be surprisingly tough to find an all-white ensemble, so start planning as soon as you can. Also, make sure you bring layers and an umbrella (clear or white), as fluctuating temperatures and weather conditions are nearly guaranteed; it is Calgary, after all. Lastly, opt for comfortable shoes, especially if you plan to take public transit. Ladies, if stilettos are non-negotiable, throw a pair of flip-flops in your bag for the trek.

What to bring… You’ll need a folding table between 28 and 32 inches square, two white folding chairs, a white tablecloth, white cloth napkins, silverware, white dishes, clear wine glasses, a picnic basket (full of your gourmet meal for two, unless you opt for the catered dinner), white or glass table décor (flameless candles, white flowers, etc.), and a clear or white garbage bag. If you’re having a hard time finding the right-sized table and matching chairs, take a look on kijiji; you may have some luck finding sets being sold by previous attendees. This might seem like a lot of work, and it may sound a little pretentious, but the effort is worth it. Dîner en Blanc really is a one-of-a-kind experience. It’s an exclusive event, yes, but it’s also an evening unlike any other. Santé, friends. Get more information and register at calgary.dinerenblanc.com. ✤ Stephanie Arsenault is a writer and photographer, eater and drinker, adventurer and cookie monster. Get in touch at globaldish.ca.

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France’s Marathon du Medoc

Costumed runners fill the street

Time to stop for a wine tasting

T H E L O N G E S T M A R AT H O N I N T H E W O R L D I N C L U D E S 2 1 W I N E TA S T I N G S story and photos by BJ Oudman

“Trois, deux, un...allleeeezzz.... “ Amidst the cheering, music and general revelry, the crowd of 9,000 costumed runners pressed forward, eager to cross the start line of the longest marathon in the world: Marathon du Medoc, revered by wine geeks for twenty one winetasting stops through châteaux properties of Bordeaux, France. Yup, you still have to run 42 km, but to all the hopeful participants, it’s worth every agonizing stride. The idea of partaking in this spectacle was sparked years ago over a dinner party conversation about milestone birthday goals. My partner’s goal was pretty clear – to run the Marathon du Medoc by the time she was 50. Karen and I and our running buddies joked about it for years during our long Saturday morning runs, but 2016 was the deadline and it could not be pushed off for another year. As participants in this event, Team Bucket-list shares 10 Words Of Wisdom (WOW) here to optimize success, should you, the reader, choose to take this challenge.

Roman soldiers with their Trojan horse

Scheduled for September 10, 2016, the marathon offered two options for registration – buy the marathon package deal that included accommodation, transportation and a race bib, or have perfect timing and enter independently. Our group of eight put down a rental deposit on a little chateau in November 2015; now all we had to do was get in when the time came. Registration opens in the “beginning of March,” no exact day or time provided. Fortunately, one of my frequent visits to the website resulted in successful registration during the four-hour window before the race sold out. WOW #1 – “friend” the marathon on Facebook for hints as to registration opening time keeping the time change in mind. Knowing that we were in, we circulated training schedules and our weekly runs got longer, giving us ample time to plan details and debate costume design. Additional training of our palates was, of course, necessary, with bottles of Bordeaux wine opened at every social occasion. WOW #2 – each year has a different theme – take the requirement to run in costume seriously! Participants put as much effort into their outfits as they do into physical training! The 2016 theme was Tales and Legends – what was more fitting for us than “legend of the wild Canadian west?” We wore kneehighs designed as cowboy boots, fringed vests and hats and accented them with Stampede pins, scarves and plenty of Canadian tattoos.

Team Bucket-list – costumed as the wild Canadian west



The Marathon du Medoc is not just about running. It is 42 km long, but that’s where similarities to other marathons end. First of all, it’s a minimum three-day commitment. Marathon Day eve includes the race package pick-up (but instead of energy gel and electrolyte replacement powder samples, wine, foie gras and other gastronomic goodies are free to sample) as well as an open door to many

participating châteaux for tastings. Our prestige package included a château-hosted dinner called Milles Pâtés, but casual pasta in the town square was another option. WOW #3 – dinner really is just a big all-you-can-eat with free-flowing wine, pasta and dancing to fuel you for the next day. The French are notorious for poor public bathroom facilities and the five portable toilets for 3,000 people quickly became what those in the know call “towers of poo” early in the evening, so don’t over hydrate.

Connecting people, places, moments

Most marathons begin early, but this civil event takes the previous night festivities into account and has a 9:30 a.m. starter’s gun. Pauillac, where the race begins, is a narrow riverside town with limited parking. WOW #4 – arrive early! The Parade of Fancy Costumes begins at 8 a.m. as participants make their way to the start area. The negative aspect of showing up early is you probably have to pee, but refer to WOW #3 multiplied – 9,000 runners, 4,000 volunteers, five porta-potties. In other words, plan to hold it. Anticipation fills the air and costumes fill the streets, with the fairytale theme providing opportunity for people all shapes and sizes, hairy or not, to don wings and tutus in public. Snow White and the Seven Dwarves, Santa and his elves, Three Little Pigs, Little Red Riding Hood and more were all present in the crowd. Then there were imaginary legends – France road repair crews and Donald Trump as US president (OK, that came true). But the Knights of the Round Table, Roman soldiers with their Trojan horse and Peter Pumpkin eater pushing his wife in a float along the entire route demanded the most admiration for perseverance. Finally, the gun sounded and we all eventually crossed the start line – only to stop and pee. WOW #5 – lose your modesty. Be prepared to drop your drawers between rows of grapes or along a tree-lined ditch. The sheer volume of participants filling the narrow streets made running slow, but the first stop was only 2 km in. WOW #6 – unless you are at the start of the pack, skip the first few stops to gain some ground because the wait for wine or water will cost you valuable time. Absorb the magic of the villages and let the vibe carry you along until km 4 – Château Pichon Longueville. That’s where we found wine that could be savoured out of real glasses before being carefully returned to volunteers instead of thrown to the ground like they are at the usual race hydration station. The route passed through Lynch-Bages, Latour, Grand Puy Lacoste, Mouton and Lafite Rothschild, Phelan Segur – enough big names to almost make us forget about the pain of mileage passing under our feet in 34-degree heat. WOW #7 – plan to taste and spit at the wine stops or you will never make it through 21 of them. The legendary Irish drag volleyball team was visibly regretting its decision to squirrel away a bottle of Château Beychevelle from km 7, as the team was down to two players by km 38. The final stretch of hot black asphalt was punctuated by five gourmet stops – for oysters and champagne, steak, corn, cheese and ice cream. It was tempting to linger at each knowing the end was near, but the gate closure after 6.5 hours prompted us to hurry along to collect our swag. Rumours had circulated about the sweeper – rules and regulations warn you to stay ahead if you want to have an official finish. We had envisioned dapper Frenchmen with brooms pushing the stragglers along, but instead, it was a cart of officials wielding annoying megaphones. WOW #8 – the gates actually close after seven hours, but anyone who runs it in less than six is doing it all wrong. Run the race but enjoy the run. Ecstatic to finally view the finish line, four of us crossed under the arch arm-in-arm, kind of proud of our 6:15 finish. Not too fast, not too slow, we’d been embracing the experience. Medals and swag bags (containing a bottle of wine no less) in hand, we headed “home” to jump in the pool and celebrate the day by popping open well-deserved bubbles! The third day of activity is the “recovery walk.” WOW #9 – wear good shoes as the 10 km meander through fields, châteaux and historical sites, with a side of wine tasting, was actually 14. But refuelling with a three-course lunch and bottomless wine with 3,000 of our new best friends, interspersed with more dancing and camaraderie, provided a bittersweet conclusion to the months of training and preparation. WOW #10 – talk to strangers. The entire marathon weekend is a social opportunity to meet people from all over the world who share a passion for food, wine and fitness, and promise to return and do it all over again... maybe. Marathon du Medoc 

This year’s Marathon du Medoc is September 9, 2017. Visit marathondumedoc.com for details. ✤ BJ Oudman is in continual pursuit of creating the next great memory. CITYPALATE.ca JULY AUGUST 2017




BBQ on the Bow Don’t miss it, September 2 and 3 at the Montgomery Community Centre, 5003 - 16th Ave NW. Lots of good stuff for adults and kids, good smoked meat to eat, music and fun for the whole family. You know the drill – this is the 25th annual BBQ on the Bow. You’ve probably been to every one of them! We certainly have. As part of the celebration, the BBQ on the Bow society tells us that a new competition has been lined up for the Stampede, July 7-9, called BBQ on the Elbow at the Stampede grounds. Woot! Woot! Can’t have too much tasty smoked meat. Don’t miss either one! Visit bbqonthebow.com for all the smoky details.

THE MUSTARD SEED needs donations of bottled water for the homeless as summer heat lands in our laps. We can do this to help thirsty people in need – water donations can be dropped off at The Mustard Seed downtown location, 102 - 11th Ave. SE, 7 a.m. - 7 p.m., every day of the week. 314 10th St. NW Calgary AB

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n Exciting goings on at Symon’s Valley Ranch. The Market building unfortunately burned down earlier this year, but the restaurant was spared and is reopening as DJANGO’S Smokehouse. Dubbed a “Spaghetti Western” kinda place, it will serve great barbecue, pizza, pasta and all-day breakfast. Restaurateur Witold Twardowski teamed up with Market manager Ken Aylesworth to launch this familyfriendly, neighbourhood restaurant, out of the ashes so to speak. Twardowski’s chef at Plowshare, Mike Scarcelli, is helping with menu and setup. Meanwhile, plans are in the works to rebuild the Market building. In the meantime, a pop-up Market is held every Saturday in DJANGO’S parking lot. n Leading Canadian restaurant group Oliver & Bonacini has opened Hudson, a state-of-the-art event complex. Hudson marks the completion of Oliver & Bonacini’s foray into western Canada and is the restaurant group’s final concept in the historic Hudson’s Bay building, following the opening of The Guild and Sub Rosa last year. Spanning the sixth floor of the building, Hudson features stunning views of downtown Calgary and an open-concept layout that can accommodate up to 710 guests at one time, whether seated or as a standing reception for all sorts of events, from corporate conferences to elegant weddings and high-profile social gatherings. Visit hudsonevents.ca for more information. n Michael Noble’s The Nash & Off Cut Bar, popular dining and drinking destinations, toasts to Inglewood this summer with the “Cheers to Inglewood” campaign. In partnership with local Inglewood businesses, Off Cut will feature a different cocktail every two weeks from June 1 to August 24.

A portion of the proceeds from cocktails sold during Cheers to Inglewood will be donated to The Alex Youth Health Centre, a safe and supportive place for youth to receive health and social care. Located in the heart of Inglewood, The Nash & Off Cut Bar is known for its high-quality food and ambiance. Inspired by the sense of home, community and neighbourly love also found throughout Inglewood, Off Cut is collaborating with Espy Experience, The Livery Shop, Cold Garden Beverage Co., Kent of Inglewood, Plant and Rosso Coffee Roasters to craft cocktails inspired by each business’s distinct brand. Yay! Go drink and support a good cause – we sure do support that! n The Block Kitchen & Lounge has had significant changes take place in late spring – our good friends, chef and manager, Kai and Norma Jean Salimaki, are off on new food adventures and a new executive chef has come on board – Mike Preston, formerly at Murrieta’s downtown. Meanwhile, Kai Salimaki is now cheffing at Ox Bar de Tapas, which you’ll remember as Ox & Angela, renovated to be a Spanish tapas bar, and Norma Jean is at Spot On Kitchen & Bar, sibling to 4th Spot Kitchen & Bar. Good for them, good for the new kitchen dude at Block, gotta check it out! n This sounds like fun! A brand new restaurant in Canmore is called Devil’s Table, an upscale Euro-Caribbean fusion, pirate-themed eatery that operates from the decks of Creekside Villa at 709 Benchlands Trail. Owner Marcus Abrahamson’s parents ran a restaurant of the same name on the island of Bequia in the Caribbean. Look for a bounty of fine food and drink in a nautical setting. Visit creeksidevilla.ca/ restaurant for all the tasty details.

We’ve had this and it’s pretty damn delish! We’ve also had some of the other flavours – these dudes do a great job on this summer delight, and it’s the perfect ending to a pretty much perfect pizza or pasta!

n Lazy Loaf & Kettle has jumped on the sharing plates trolley, and it’s a good thing. Lots of well-portioned and very well-priced food to share with your friend/lover, friend or many friends. Sharing is a good thing, share these delicious plates of food at LL&K. lazyloafandkettle.com n Check out the newly opened Meat & Bread at 821 - 1 St. SW. Meat & Bread was created by two friends who love meat between bread – don’t we all! They opened their first location in Vancouver’s Gastown in 2010 and have expanded into B.C., Seattle and now Calgary. Meat & Bread is a sandwich shop with a minimalist menu, fresh ingredients, in-house made porchetta and meatballs as well as soup and salad. Corbeaux Bakehouse bakes the bread. Visit meatandbread.ca for all the tasty details. n Fergus and Bix Restaurant and Beer Market will open its second location this summer. After nine successful years of serving some of Canada’s best craft beer selections in West Springs at 85 St. SW, it will open its doors in McKenzie Towne. Fergus and Bix supports local producers and suppliers while offering guests great service and dining experiences. Check Facebook, Instagram and Twitter at @fergusandbix. n Vin Room loves its dogs. Vin Room Mission and Vin Room West patios are dog-friendly, Sundays to Wednesdays. Bring your furry friend and enjoy complimentary use of beds, amenities and house-made dog treats for your pooch. For more details, visit vinroom. com/events. n Reader’s Garden Café, a historic building tucked away behind trees and shrubbery, yet in the middle of the city, is a perfect place to relax. The Café is well known for its Saturday and Sunday brunch and its lunch menu has a limited but attractive selection that features daily specials and exceptional pastries and sweets. The Café also hosts corporate or private functions and is a perfect venue for Stampede parties, with a great view of the fireworks. For all the tasty details visit readersgardencafe.ca. n Summer is here and so is handcrafted gelato at Pulcinella, featuring a variety of flavours and offered in house, or as take-out. Try the Pulcinella signature affogatto, vanilla bean gelato served with a side of hot espresso.

n The Bavarian Inn folks in Bragg Creek invite you to join them at their themed dinner nights in the beautifully renovated restaurant. Dinners are $75 and tickets need to be purchased in advance because space is limited. Visit thebavarianinn.com for more information or call 403-949-3611 or email eric. thebavarianinn@gmail.com n Summer at River Café: picnic baskets filled with seasonal specialties from the kitchen and bakery to be enjoyed in the romantic setting of Prince’s Island Park and beyond. During the Folk Music Festival, River hosts a special Folk in the Field performance on the patio Thursday. Happy Hour 3-5 pm daily, and a special Early Bird brunch starting at 9 a.m. both Saturday and Sunday. Every day at River Café is Food Day Canada (officially Saturday August 5th). Celebrate Canada’s 150th with the ultimate local summer feast on the banks of the Bow River all weekend long August 3-6. For details on all of the above, visit rivercafe.com. n Summer at Deane House: On Canada Day, celebrate Canada’s 150th at brunch or dinner in the beautiful gardens, and play croquet and bocce with spectacular river views. Happy Hour daily 3-5:30 p.m. and All Night Happy Hour every Thursday 3 p.m. ‘til late in the Tenement bar. Wine, beer and cocktails rotate weekly, with bites from the bar menu. During the Stampede, uniquely located next door to the grounds, Deane’s patio is weatherproofed and ready, rain or shine. Calgary’s best new hot-spot for pre-rodeo lunches and post-chucks dinners. Ten days of live music, horseshoes and an outdoor grill. Live Jazz Brunch Summer Series in the garden every Saturday and Sunday, 10 a.m.- 3 p.m., featuring a rotating selection of local musicians and jazz talent. Details on all of the above at deanehouse.com n A new restaurant has opened in Cochrane – Fence & Post a Prairie Kitchen – that offers casual fine dining in historic downtown Cochrane. Chris Hartman, formerly of FARM and The Bears Den, is the executive chef and part owner. His business partner, Melanie Martzoukos, with many years in the wine industry, brings her expertise to the beverage side. Using local ingredients with Canadian flavour profiles and a twist, F & P showcases what modern Canadian food is about. n At the Smuggler’s Group restaurants: Open Sesame offers Meatless Mondays, enhance your veggie

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stir-fry with a meatless add-on at no extra charge. And $7 Martini Mondays; Tuesday is $2 off Market Gardens; Wednesday is 30% off apps and $5 Tallboys; Thursday is 1/2 price bottles and glasses of wine. Bolero offers Monday Buck-a-Shuck Oysters and $7 glass of prosecco; Tuesday is Seafood Station; Wednesday is Dessert Station; Thursday is no corkage and 1/2 price bottles of wine; Friday is $6 glass of Sangria and $24 Jugs; Sunday Brunch is $5 Mimosas and Caesars. Smuggler’s offers Monday Buck-a-Shuck Oysters & Free Corkage. Tango offers Monday Buck-a-Shuck Oysters & Free Corkage; Tuesdays are Teasedays! 2 can dine for $50, Raw bar happy hour, 4:30 - 6:00, Monday - Friday and 9:00 to close Monday - Saturday, Green hour starts June 19, Wednesday July 12 is Wine Wars. Visit smugglers.ca for details. n When you next visit Vancouver, here’s something to keep in mind for your dining – Hawksworth Restaurant, in the heart of downtown, is, for the sixth consecutive year, the winner of Vancouver magazine’s best upscale restaurant award and has been rated best restaurant in western Canada by Canada’s 100 Best. You’ll find imaginative contemporary Canadian cuisine along with a great wine list and noteperfect service. Visit hawksworthrestaurant.com for all the tasty details. drinks docket n PEELED Calgary Cocktail Festival is a cocktail event committed to supporting, promoting and growing the cocktail industry in Calgary and sharing its stories around the world thru on-line media. The inaugural PEELED event will take place in Calgary, August 12-14. For one weekend, Calgary will be turned into a playground for the cocktail curious. Purchase a ticket for a small fee and get a passport to explore curated experiences around town. The passport tells the story of the venue, the mixologist and, where relevant, the story of the agricultural roots. The places where you’ll try cocktails include

The Guild, One 18 Empire, Raw Bar, Bank & Baron, Native Tongues, Ricardo’s Hideaway, Pr%f, Bridgette Bar and Ox Bar de Tapas, and there will be seminars with cocktail legends Dale McGrath and Jack McGarry. For all the fun details, visit calgaryscocktailfestival.com. n Alberta Beerfest Canadian International Beer Awards (formerly known as the Calgary International Beerfest Awards) Winners for 2017, the local dudes: Last Best Brewing & Distilling won gold in the pilsner category for its Phil-sner; Big Rock won bronze for its Czech Pilsner; in the UK Ales category, Brewsters got gold for Brewsters Hammerhead Red Ale and Common Crown got bronze for The Eddie ESB; in American Ales, Village got gold for Village Blacksmith; in the Belgian French Ale category, Dandy Brewing got silver for Une Vielle Maitresse; in the Specialty Beers category, Cold Garden Beverage got bronze for The All-Nighter Vanilla Cappuccino Porter; in the Best Friday Cask category, Last Best Brewing got bronze for its Choke Cherry Imperial Stout. To see every award, click on “contests & awards” albertabeerfestivals.com n The Naramata Bench Wineries Association is throwing its annual Naramata Tailgate Party September 9 that includes wine tastings from 28 Naramata wineries, local chefs’ cuisine and live music. Saluting Canada’s 150th with a “back to our roots” theme. Tickets are now on sale at tinyurl.com/naramatatailgate2017. Visit naramatabench.com for details. n This is tooooooo cool! The Okanagan’s Burrowing Owl Estate Winery’s 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon was awarded a gold medal at the 2017 International Competition of Cabernets in Paris, the only Canadian wine to receive this ranking at this prestigious competition. The winery was thrilled that its wine was recognized as being among the best in the world. You can taste this wine when Burrowing Owl releases it in October or November. continued on page 34



stockpot continued from page 33

made drinks with the vodka, the fully loaded and lime juice – total YUM, and healthy, too, we say! Check it out at frenchs.ca

n The world's most sustainable organic cold brew – new this summer from Paradise Mountain Organic Coffee – using a rare combination of six origin beans from Thailand, South America and Indonesia that make up a smooth, rich, cold brew coffee that will help keep your summer cool and tasty. Also available in decaf. pmoc.ca

n Summer events at Black Hills Estate Winery in the Okanagan: Sunset Happy Hour, which extends regular hours to 7 p.m. every day in July and August, returns this year. It includes two-for-one tastings. Also the release of a couple of new wines, including roussanne, which is new to the portfolio, and a rosé. Later in the summer, there is the annual Midsummer Night’s Dream party (August 12) and September 30 is the Fall Harvest Party. All the tasty details at blackhillswinery.com/ Visit-Us/Events cooking classes n SAIT’s downtown Culinary Campus: Date Night, July 21 and August 18; Canning, July 22; Thrill of the Grill, July 28 and August 11; Artisan Bread, July 29; Viennoiserie, August 19; Curry, August 25. Visit culinarycampus.ca for details and more courses.

n French’s has launched a celebration of Canada’s 150th with two tasty Not Your Ordinary Caesar Cocktail Mixes – Original and Fully Loaded – that are made in Ontario using Canadian tomatoes and can be found in grocery stores across Canada. AND, French’s has paired up with Canadian-made Polar Ice Vodka, so until August, if you buy a bottle of the vodka in liquor stores across Canada you’ll get a free sample of French’s Caesar Mix while supplies last. We’ve

n The Cookbook Co. Cooks cooking camps for kids: July 24 - July 28, 10 a.m.- 3 p.m., ages 8 -11; July 31August 4, 10 a.m.- 3 p.m., ages 12+. A week of cooking, eating, learning, laughing. Your kids learn knife skills, kitchen safety, cooking techniques. Call 403-265-6066, ext. 1 to register.

general stirrings n Urban Butcher introduces us to cold-smoked steaks! Yum! Smoked at Canadian Rocky Mountain Resort’s production centre, the cold-smoked ribeye and striploin steaks will pack a smokefilled punch at your next barbecue. And who doesn’t love good smoked meat? We sure do, from our smokers and now from CRMR's smokers. n SAIT is about to introduce a new culinary campus downtown – The Tastemarket by SAIT – where School of Hospitality and Tourism students will learn first-hand about everything from business operations and finance to regulations and human resource management. Makes sense to teach business skills along with cooking skills so that when students graduate they might want to launch their own restaurant and know how to run it. Look for a September opening at 444 – 7th Ave. SW. We have always known what a great school SAIT is – it just keeps getting better! n Check this out! The Fairmont Palliser has launched a fun lunch, the Side Door Series lunch, where you can pick up tacos on Tuesdays and burgers on Thursdays at the Oak Room doors on 9th Ave., between 1st and 2nd St. SW, from 11 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. You’re outdoors in summer anyway, so go get some tasty lunch, easy-peasy!

n This just sounds too good! The opening of the Granary Road Market that’s an active learning park for kids, a public market, a bakery and a bistro that’s fast-casual food during the day and a more sophisticated menu in the evening, with wine, beer and cocktails while viewing the vista of the surrounding foothills from the bar on the roof above the bistro. Plus field trips and special events, and the market is located in the Foothills MD, southwest of the city on 112th St. Visit granaryroad.com for all the fun details. AND Canadian Rocky Mountain Resorts (CRMR) is opening The Loft at the Market in late June. It will be The Loft Bakery, Kitchen and Lounge, which pretty well says it all. Visit theloftcalgary.ca to learn all the tasty details. n Gunther’s Fine Baking on International Avenue, has closed its doors. Sad for us, but a much-deserved retirement for Gunther and Elisabeth Stranzinger. We’ll miss what was some of the finest (and first!) artisanal baking in the city. n Brewery & The Beast MEATFEST comes back to Calgary August 20. This super good meat and beer lovers afternoon at Pumphouse Park is always an impressive lineup of local producers, restaurants and chefs creating exceptional meat dishes that showcase great regional fare. Look for the likes of Bridgette Bar, Foreign Concept, UNA,

NG I N N I W D R A AW NCH U R B Y A D N SU Peanuts Public House is an iconic Calgary sports bar located in the Carriage House Inn. Daily


food and drink specials and a great summer patio serving 16 brands of ice-cold beer on tap.

Patio Now Open (403) 253-1101| WWW.CARRIAGEHOUSE.NET | 9030 MACLEOD TRAIL SOUTH




Cilantro, Urban Butcher, Catch Oyster Bar, Deane House, Hayloft, Ricardo’s Hideaway, SAIT, Workshop, Butcher and the Baker, Oxbow, The Guild and many more. And supplying these places include Community Wholesale Meats, 7K Ranch, CRMR, Brandt Lake Wagyu, Spragg’s Meat Shop and Trail’s End. Don’t miss it, it’s fun, the food and beer are total yum and good music, too. Visit breweryandthebeast.com for more information. n When road tripping this summer, stop into the new Homestead Bakeshop on Main Street in Fort MacLeod that has two bakers who trained at SAIT and worked at Charcut and Corbeaux Bakehouse who make great breads and pastries. Road trippers can always use these! n Parks Day & Creekfest is a free family festival from 11a.m.- 4 p.m. on July 15 at the Bow Valley Ranche, Fish Creek Provincial Park. Celebrate the 150th Birthday of Canada and the 25th Anniversary of the Friends of Fish Creek, and learn about protecting our local waterways and natural areas. There will be performances by Juno-award winning Peter Puffin’s Whale Tales, Alberta Parks Interpretive Theatre, and local musician Jennie Harluk. Enjoy an interactive presentation by the Calgary Wildlife Rehabilitation Society, a Yo-Qi Wellness-based experience, guided walks relating to wet-

lands, beavers and the new Atco native grassland project lead by retired park planner and founding member of the Friends of Fish Creek, Wayne Meikle. Food will be available for purchase by Great Events Catering. n Boogie’s Burgers on Edmonton Trail, opened in 1969 – probably Calgary’s first burger joint? It’s still hugely popular – good for them! The new menu offers more than 19 different burgers, including some really tastysounding ones, like The Deep Fried Mac-n-Cheese Burger and The Doug’s Don’t Fear The Reaper Burger – four patties, bacon, a butterflied beef wiener, cheddar, fried egg and a mini corn dog on top! Yikes! Don’t fear the reaper, indeed! And for sweet-teeth, more than 30 milkshake flavours, including peanut butter and jam and The Fat Elvis, that’s peanut butter, banana and bacon! Sounds like we need an Elvis to go with The Reaper Burger. And look for arcade games, bizarre pop-culture décor and music to match. Fun! n Grow Calgary is a 100 percent volunteer-run organization that delivers fresh produce to more than 20 Food Access agencies throughout the city. No other volunteer organization delivers nutrient-dense food on the same scale that Grow Calgary does. Grow Calgary’s goals tend to the sustainable social and economic needs of Calgarians. The organization is always looking

for individuals to assist in community building and innovative ways to improve our local food system. Find more information on growcalgary.ca. n At Meez Cuisine, Willow Park Village, you’ll find what you need to make dining al fresco easy and delicious. Perfect for the grill and ready to go, no prep or chopping required! Just open the package and get cooking – Asian flank steak, Meez spiced-rubbed pork chops and cedar plank salmon with mahogany sauce, just to name a few. Meez chefs make great Alberta beef burgers, chicken burgers and Spolumbo beef burgers, too. Also find Cochu Chocolate, Made by Marcus ice cream, cultured butter and Gull Valley Greenhouse fresh produce in store. Don’t forget Meez Cuisine & Catering for any party, big or small! Executive Chef Judy Wood is a great teacher and will lead private cooking classes for a minimum of 10 people at the Meez Kitchen or in your home. meezcuisine.com n The Ocean Wise brand that is already familiar to many Canadians as the sustainable seafood program created by Vancouver Aquarium as a direct-action program to tackle overfishing. Now, the name encompasses much more – it will influence a global community to see, know, understand, and think about the oceans and aquatic life in a deeper, more meaningful, and more actionable way. Through new

Ocean Wise engagement platforms, the organization will now connect with tens of millions more in the digital universe, encouraging people around the world to take an interest in, and protect, vulnerable aquatic ecosystems. n Alora Boutique is a Calgary familyrun business that creates meaningful jewelry that gives back. In celebration of Canada’s 150th Birthday, Alora created wine glass charms for our Pig & Pinot in support of Calgary Meals on Wheels. The charms were created from fairtrade recycled glass beads. Alora exists to help people live meaningful lives and empower disadvantaged women to rise above poverty. Every Alora piece comes with a positive message to celebrate and inspire the wearer, and five percent of your Alora purchase is donated to organizations that help transition women out of poverty and homelessness. Find Alora at alora.ca, on social media @aloraboutique or in East Village Junction Retail Pop-up (439 - 8th Ave. SE) until September 30.



6 quick ways with...


2017 FUN





The poor man’s blueberry is how I would have referred to saskatoon berries not too many years ago. I think because of its remarkable resemblance to said berry, but with a texture and flavour that is not like blueberry. Saskatoons are actually closely related to the apple – now knowing this, the texture and flavour make sense to me. This is a fruit that likes to be cooked and freezes well. In fact, sometimes frozen fruits or berries are better than fresh, as the freezing process will help to soften the flesh and makes them juicier.


« June 5th, 2017 » MRAS Golf Tournament Turner Valley Golf Club

« June 17 – October 7, 2017 » « June 5th, 2017 » Millarville Farmers’ Market MRAS 9:00Golf am - Tournament 2:00 pm

« July 1, 2017 - Canada Day » Turner Valley Golf Club « June 17, 2017 » 112th Millarville Races 6th Millarville Half Marathon

« June – October 7, 2017 » – Run17 to the Farmers’ Market « July 21-23, 2017 » Millarville Farmers’ Market « 21st July 1,Millarville 2017 - Canada Day » Rodeo 9:00 Millarville am - 2:00 pm 112th Races « August 19 & 20, 2017 21-23, 2017 » » » «« July June 17, 2017 21st Millarville Rodeo Fair 110th Priddis & Millarville 6th Millarville Half Marathon

« August & 20, 2017 »Market – Run to the19Farmers’


« Priddis October&7, 2017 » Fair 110th Millarville MRAS Community Garage Sale July 1, 2017 -7, Canada Day « October 2017 » MRAS Community Garage Sale 112th Millarville Races « October 21, 2017 » Sheep Creek Weaver « October 21, 2017Sale »


« July 21-23, 2017 »

Sheep Creek Weaver Sale « November 9, 10, 11 & Rodeo 12, 2017 21st Millarville « November 9, 10, 11 and 12, 2017 » 29th Millarville Christmas Market 29th Millarville Christmas Market « August 19 & 20, 2017 »


« October 7, 2017 » MRAS Community Garage Sale « October 21, 2017 » Sheep Creek Weaver Sale

« November 9, 10, 11 and 12, 2017 » 29th Millarville Christmas Market millarvilleracetrack.com

saskatoon berry power shake This is a fantastic, nutrient rich, start to the day or post-workout. I use a whey-based protein isolate that is great for building muscle mass. Ladies may want to find a soy-based protein powder as soy is great for feminine metabolism. In a blender put 1/2 c. frozen saskatoon berries, 1/2 a green banana, 1 c. unsweetened almond or soy milk, 1 T. maple syrup and a scoop of protein powder. Blend until smooth and frothy, about 3 minutes. Serves 1.

saskatoon and juniper relish on warmed brie

110th Priddis & Millarville Fair millarvilleracetrack.com

Chris Halpin


This relish can be used on just about anything. I’m a sucker for the richness of brie, but I don’t like it if it’s been over-heated and becomes an oily mess. So, what I do is simply have my brie at room temperature and spoon the freshly made relish over top and give it time to warm the cheese. In a saucepan over high heat, put 2 T. butter and 1 leek, thinly sliced, sauté for a minute or so, then add 1 c. saskatoon berries, 1/4 c. cider vinegar, 1/2 c. brown sugar, 1 t. ground dry juniper berry, 1 t. ground black pepper and salt to taste. Bring to a rolling boil and cook for 4 minutes before removing from the heat. Place the brie on a plate and spoon the hot relish over top and let stand for about 5 minutes before cutting into the brie. Serve with crackers or sliced baguette – cucumber rounds are also wonderful, especially in the summer. Serves 2 to 8.

saskatoon berry gazpacho I have always loved gazpacho – so refreshing and satisfying when done right. Some can be nothing more than a savoury slushy – blahh. In a food processor or blender put 1 c. fresh saskatoons, 2 c. diced watermelon, 2 roma tomatoes, diced, 2 garlic cloves, crushed, 1/4 c. olive oil, hot sauce and salt to taste. Purée until smooth and thick, about 3 minutes. While this is going on, finely chop a handful of arugula and 6 or so chives. Spoon the gazpacho into bowls and garnish the top with the chopped greens.



caramelized onion and saskatoon berry compote with arctic char seared in bacon fat I will often make a mélange of vegetables with berries or fruit and spices, in lieu of a sauce. In a skillet over medium heat, put 2 T. butter, 1 onion, thinly sliced and sauté until the onion becomes caramelized, about 10 minutes. Then add 1 c. frozen saskatoon berries, 1 t. smoked paprika, 1/2 t. chile flakes and salt to taste and continue to sauté until the fish is ready. Salt the skin of 4 arctic char fillets. Place another skillet over high heat and allow it to get very hot before adding the bacon fat. Sear the fish, skin side down, and allow the skin to get very crispy before turning it over, about 4 minutes. Salt and pepper the flesh, then flip it and sear the flesh side for about 2 minutes before removing from the pan. Arrange the fish on plates and spoon some of the compote over each of the fillets. Serves 4.

saskatoon and white chocolate cream scones To my way of thinking, a cream scone is more like a dessert than a biscuit. For those of you who’ve had coffee shop scones and are less than impressed, try these; they will make you a believer! Preheat your oven to 350ºF. In a small bowl, lightly beat 1 egg, whisk in 1 c. whipping cream, set aside. In a larger bowl put 2 c. flour, 1 t. baking powder, 3/4 c. sugar and mix well. Then add 1/2 c. fresh saskatoons and 3/4 c. chopped white chocolate and give it a bit of a mix. Gently work in 1/2 c. grated cold butter and stir in the cream mixture, just enough to have it come together. With your hands form 12 patties of dough, about 1-inch thick and 3 inches around, arrange them onto a baking sheet. Bake in the oven until they are fluffy and golden, 20 to 25 minutes. Makes 1 dozen.

When in Brazil,

do as Brazilians do! ENJOY OUR Churrasco with A GREAT selection of Brazilian beer & wine.

saskatoon berry coulis with vanilla ice cream in a caramel lace cup

recipe photos by Chris Halpin

So simple and so elegant. Who wants to spend time fussing in the kitchen instead of enjoying the summer? In a saucepan over medium heat, put 1 c. saskatoons, 1 c. sugar, 1/2 c. water and 1 t. grated fresh ginger. Bring this to a rolling boil, stirring from time to time, for about 5 minutes or until the coulis start to thicken. Remove from the heat, allow to cool, then put in the fridge. This will last for weeks. To make the cups, in a saucepan over medium heat melt 1/2 c. butter, then stir in 1/2 c. brown sugar and 2 T. corn syrup and stir until the sugar dissolves and becomes a smooth caramel. Remove from heat and stir in 1/2 c. flour. Allow the dough to cool to room temperature before baking.

136 2nd Street SW


When you’re ready to bake the cups, preheat your oven to 350ºF. On 2 lined baking sheets and using 1 T. of dough, make only 4 cookies to a tray, 2 rows of 2. These cookies will spread out to a surprising size and be remarkably thin, so don’t place them too close to each other. Bake in the oven until dark-golden brown, 7 to 8 minutes. Remove them from the oven and allow to cool for about a minute or until the cookies have started to set and are a leathery consistency. Form them in a rice bowl or a muffin tin, to make a bowl shape. Allow them to set completely, before removing. To assemble, arrange a cup on a dessert plate, scoop some ice cream in and spoon some coulis over top. Serves 8.

Chris Halpin has been teaching Calgarians to make fast, fun urban food since 1997 and is the owner of Manna Catering Service. mannaonline.com

www.wyneyc.ca •

• info@wyneyc.ca CITYPALATE.ca JULY AUGUST 2017



Allan Shewchuk


I do try to live by the credo of always coming from a place of sympathy, but I have to admit that every once in a while, I enjoy a big ol’ dose of schadenfreude. If you’re not familiar with the term, it’s a German word that means “pleasure derived from another person’s misfortune.” The recent Fyre Festival may have been the greatest generator of schadenfreude of the new millennium (or maybe ever), and I’m still basking in the sweet misfortune of the people wealthy and foolish enough to jump into that “Fyre.” If you didn’t hear about the debacle, the Fyre Festival was the creation of a shady app promoter who used his tech connections to secure some of the biggest names in the music business to play over several days on an island in the Bahamas. Appealing to the filthy rich, the festival tickets went for as high as $12,000 each, and promised accommodation in modern geodesic domes, extravagant meals from celebrity chefs, and the chance to rub shoulders with supermodels and the glitterati. This was a chance to watch acts like Blink-182 while eating caviar and sipping champagne. As if this were not enough to create antipathy towards the attendees, things got even more repugnant when Kendall Jenner became the online shill to reel in the jet set. So on top of everything else, a member of the Kardashian clan was involved. What’s not to hate? Fittingly, the festival was a complete nightmare. The whole venue was mismanaged and underfunded, causing most of the big name acts to pull out the night before. Attendees arrived to find rattletrap tents with dirt floors and plastic lawn chairs in rocky fields that resembled a moonscape. The “fine dining” consisted of white bread sandwiches with processed cheese in Styrofoam containers. Amenities included a single Porta-Potty, away from the music areas, which was not equipped with water or toilet paper. I imagine the looks on the faces of the people who shelled out thousands of dollars would have been identical to those of Thurston and Lovie Howell when they realized they were marooned on Gilligan’s Island. I can’t tell you what joy this brought me. Why did I take such pleasure in the misfortunes of these richie-rich suckers? The main reason is that the Fyre folks missed the point of every summer music, food or wine festival, which is that part of the experience is to endure a kind of shared suffering. For example, at every Canadian gathering, on the weekend of the festival (especially if it’s a long weekend), the likelihood of torrential rains is virtually guaranteed. If it doesn’t pelt down, then it’s so bloody hot and mosquito-infested that participants are convinced by their sweating and nausea that they have contracted malaria. The weather ordeal is the first half of the fun, though. The second half of the fun is to not eat haute cuisine, but stand in line for hours at a food truck and to eat something really bad for you off a paper plate, with plastic utensils. I personally love the ethnic festivals, where I make a beeline to the kiosk selling some delicacy featuring the guts of small animals. Guts in the blazing sun with a plastic fork – all part of the shared pain that’s essential to the enjoyment of a summer event. The other crucial part of a summer festival that Fyre missed out on is the peoplewatching. In my view, it would be zero fun to go where everybody was wearing Prada and sipping chardonnay. No sirree. Give me a folk festival with a beer garden where I can see a nerdy dweeb with shorts wearing dark, high socks and hard lace-up shoes topped off with a Tilley hat and those flip-style clip-on sunglasses. Or the polar opposite, an overly husky fellow wearing Crocs, cut off gray sweatpants and a singlet (I prefer “singlet” to the offensive “wife beater,” which is sadly probably accurate).

Manning the grill all summer long greateventscatering.ca | @greatEventsYYC 38


There is a part of me that feels some sympathy with the unfortunate Fyre Festival ticket buyers. It looks as if the whole thing was a big fraud, and no one, rich or poor, deserves to be stolen from. But, in the end, it’s their own fault for believing that any festival without extreme weather, street food, plastic utensils and sweaty men in “wife-beaters” would be worth attending in the first place. Allan Shewchuk is a lawyer, food writer and sought-after Italian food and wine guru. He currently has kitchens in both Calgary and Florence, Italy, but will drink wine pretty much anywhere.


Open Friday, Saturday, and Sunday from 9:00 am until 5:00 pm 1235 26 Ave SE, Calgary, AB T2G 1R7 crossroadsmarket.ca

Profile for City Palate

City Palate July August 2017  

The Flavour of Calgary's Food Scene - Summer in the City Palate

City Palate July August 2017  

The Flavour of Calgary's Food Scene - Summer in the City Palate


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