ALBERTA / FOOD & DRINK / RECIPES :: VOLUME 6 NO.1 :: MAY 2017
Celebrating 5 Years
OF FOOD AND DRINK IN ALBERTA!
THE CLASSICS EDITION BEERS THAT CHANGED THE WORLD
CU STO M
5 Mother's Day Brunches | 5 Ingredient Cocktails | 5 Alberta Ranchers
26 34 22 28
30 VOLUME 6 / ISSUE #1 MAY 2017
Hot Okanagan: The Classics Edition Rediscovering five veteran wineries with staying power that have set the stage for the new players by Jeanette Montgomery
10 Prep School Five ways to prep like a chef by Gabriel Hall
Skip the Line-Up! Five Alberta Mother’s Day brunches that take reservations by Elizabeth Chorney-Booth
Five Things You Didn’t Know… about popular Alberta restaurants – the scoop on well-known food and drink spots we’ve all come to know and love! by Jody Robbins
28 Giddy Up! Five Alberta ranches worth getting to know by Diana Ng
30 5 Alberta Sweet Spots … for your custom birthday cakes by Mallory Frayn
20 Cheers To Your Health A guide to Alberta’s kombucha makers by Tracy Hyatt
40 Making the Case …for super, natural British Columbia wine by Tom Firth
26 5 Ingredient Cocktails Creative yet simple cocktails to make at home by Linda Garson
42 Open That Bottle Martin Gunson of Eau Claire Distillery by Linda Garson
38 Five Beers That Changed The World Some pioneering beers spawn thousands of imitators and set the standard to which all other beers are measured by David Nuttall
Salutes and Shout Outs
Off The Menu – Winebar Kensington’s Basil Cheesecake with Pine Nut Crumble and Strawberry Chips
Chefs’ Tips – and Tricks!
On the Cover: Many thanks to Lynette MacDonald of Swirl Cakes who lovingly handcrafted our Culinaire stack of magazines birthday cake. And to Ingrid Kuenzel who photographed the cake and created a sensational sparkly celebratory background for our 5th birthday cover!
Letter From The Editor Three of those years have been some of the toughest in Alberta – but we’re still here and thriving. I can’t say it’s been smooth sailing, the publishing business is notoriously difficult, and the chances of success are about as good as opening a new restaurant, in other words not very high. But as people who know me realise to their benefit or detriment, my best trait and my worst trait are both tenacity!
It’s our fifth anniversary – and this is my 51st letter to you!
I’m thrilled at our achievements over the last five years; excuse me while I blow Culinaire’s trumpet, but I’m so proud that since our fourth birthday we’re provincewide, and grateful that we have been so warmly welcomed in Edmonton and the mountains.
Gosh, when I think back to November 2011 when we started our journey, and to May 2012 when our first issue came out, just how far we’ve come, how much we’ve learned, and how much we’ve grown in the last five years.
We’re preparing for our fifth Alberta Beverage Awards, which has been hugely successful and also grown every year. Our third annual Culinaire Calgary Treasure Hunt was an enormous day again for Calgary, and we’re eagerly
anticipating our second Hunt in Edmonton on September 9th. And now I can share our big news that we’re launching Alberta’s Finest Drinks Lists Awards for the best restaurant wine, beer and spirits lists in our province! It’s free for every establishment to enter and you’ll find more details on page 13. We wouldn’t still be here without the support of so many people, and I can’t thank you enough for your complimentary messages and feedback. And humungous thanks go to the people who make Culinaire possible – our team of editors, writers, photographers, and sales people, past and present; our printers, and our advertisers who provide the means for us to continue to celebrate Alberta’s vibrant and exciting culinary scene. Please thank them by supporting them too. Cheers, Linda Garson, Editor-in-Chief
Thanks Alberta Barley You make Great beer Stop in for the largest selection of local beer in the province
11819 St. Albert Trail | SHERBROOKELIQUOR.COM
ALBERTA / FOOD & DRINK / RECIPES Editor-in-Chief/Publisher: Linda Garson email@example.com Calgary Sales Director: Greg Mitchell 587-224-3270 firstname.lastname@example.org Edmonton Sales Director: Lisa Wolansky 587-338-8780 email@example.com Creative Director: Dan Clapson firstname.lastname@example.org Managing Editor: Anna Brooks email@example.com Contributing Drinks Editor: Tom Firth firstname.lastname@example.org
Our Contributors < Tracy Hyatt
Tracy Hyatt is the associate managing editor of AMA Insider, the member magazine of the Alberta Motor Association. Tracy writes about travel and culinary tourism across the country; most recently taking her all over Alberta to discover kombucha, and Alberta-made fermented foods and drinks. Her passion is everything Albertan, particularly southern Alberta and cowboy culture. There’s not a cattle drive, town rodeo, or cowboy cookout that wouldn’t tempt her.
Contributing Photographer: Ingrid Kuenzel Design: Emily Vance Contributors: Anna Brooks Elizabeth Chorney-Booth Dan Clapson Mallory Frayn Gabriel Hall Tracy Hyatt Karen Miller Jeannette Montgomery Diana Ng David Nuttall Jody Robbins
To read about our talented team of contributors, please visit us online at culinairemagazine.ca. Contact us at: Culinaire Magazine #1203, 804 -3rd Avenue SW Calgary, AB T2P 0G9 403-870-9802 email@example.com www.facebook.com/CulinaireMagazine Twitter: @culinairemag Instagram: @culinairemag For subscriptions, competitions and to read Culinaire online: culinairemagazine.ca
< Jeannette Montgomery
Jeannette Montgomery is a freelance writer and communications consultant. Based in the Okanagan for more than 10 years, her focus on food and wine includes how we build and sustain our community food systems. From dusty vineyards and well-worn boots to starlit dinners and not-so-sensible shoes, Jeannette is happiest unearthing the stories of a place and its people. She lives in Oliver with her fella, a large BC wine cellar, and their cat named Tippy.
FIELD TO FORK CULINARY SERIES
This spring, we’re taking the dining out of the dining room, and serving you a taste of history.
< Jody Robbins
After ditching a career in international marketing, this explorer of over 50 countries now pens freelance lifestyle pieces from her home in Calgary. Her first book: 25 Places in Canada Every Family Should Visit hits the bookstores this month. When not travelling or writing, Jody enjoys burning off the many calories she consumes by snowboarding and hiking. Follow her adventures on her blog Travels with Baggage or on Instagram @TravelswBaggage.
F R I D AY, M AY 1 9
Selkirk Grille Patio Opening Party T H U R S D AY, J U N E 2 9
Selkirk Lobster Boil on the Founders’ Lounge Patio VISIT HERITAGEPARK.CA FOR MORE DETAILS RESERVATIONS 403.268.8607 Open Tuesday through Sunday for lunch and dinner. Starting May 22, open Mondays for lunch. HeritageParkYYC
Salutes... Congratulations to BC’s Summerhill Pyramid Winery on winning the world’s best chardonnay with their 2014 Chardonnay Icewine at Burgundy’s 2017 Chardonnay du Monde! A cause close to our hearts, Calgary’s first World Fair Trade Day festival is
taking place at Eau Claire Market, May 13, 10-4 pm. There are fairtrade vendors, store specials, fairtrade roses for Mother’s Day, day-long entertainment, giveaways, raffles, and lots more. Free admission, and fun for the whole family. Spot the fairtrade banana!
Supporting Kids Up Front and Grow Calgary, YYC Burger Battle is Calgary’s latest burger fest celebrating local culinary talent and ingredients. From May 26 -June 4, each participating restaurant will feature a unique burger that isn’t on their menu. Check out yycburgerbattle.com
and Shout Outs... Canadian Food Championships is welcoming competitors of any skill level, from home cooks to professional chefs, to compete July 21-23, in Edmonton. The top two of the 20 competitors in each category will represent Team Canada at the World Food Championships. canadianfoodchampionships.ca
Market, fast casual, Nando’s, now have seven restaurants in Alberta! Dine in or take out the well-loved flame-grilled peri-peri chicken, and check out the colourful, contemporary South African art and afro-luso beats. Nando’s
Local Calgary company, Primal Stone, is bringing back the ancient practice of stone cooking, with its slabs of Canadian soapstone for grilling on the BBQ or chilling to keep your appies fresh. With outstanding thermal properties, soapstone evenly radiates heat for hours, and prevents food from falling through the grates. We loved our steaks cooked on the stone, they were super tender and flavourful, and you can use it for fish, pizza, veggies too. Available in Standard or XL, with free shipping in Canada! theprimalstone.com With the opening of the latest Calgary location in Mahogany at the Village 6
Visitors to Calgary’s Telus Spark can now enjoy the interactive, family-friendly, Social Eatery, created by Culinary Director, Food Network’s Chef Roger Mooking, and led by Chef De Cuisine, Alison MacNeil. It’s a well thought out concept of healthy, globally inspired dishes starring fresh, local ingredients cooked from scratch, with a multitude of choices, especially when you get to the condiment bar. There are plenty of vegetarian and vegan options, as well as for allergy sufferers, a Phil and Seb coffee bar, and catering by Charcut for functions and corporate events. Social Eatery
Calgary’s only Relais & Chateaux property, Kensington Riverside Inn, now has a brand new restaurant, Oxbow. The lobby, lounge and restaurant have been completely refreshed by Sarah Ward Interiors, and are stylish, cosy and intimate, yet welcoming and approachable. The same can be said for Chef de Cuisine, Sean Cutler’s menu, under the direction of Hotel Arts Group Executive Chef Jan Hansen; it is creative, but familiar and uncomplicated. We loved the smokeless tuna using lapsang souchong tea, the hummus, the pea risotto… there are 50 wines under $50, and all the knowledgeable service staff have level 3 WSET! Come for breakfast, lunch/ brunch, and dinner. We’ll see you there. Blowers & Grafton is named after two Halifax streets known for their food, and they’re serving up generous ribsticking portions of it. Josh Robinson had a pizza and donair shop before moving to Calgary to work in the oil patch, but he couldn’t find his classic comfort food, so he opened his own
eatery! There’s a great vibe in this little room on the Edmonton Trail where Carino was. Enjoy a maritime beer or a classic, but clever, cocktail like Peggy’s Coke and Maritime Mule with your garlic fingers and Brother’s Fried Pepperoni. Grate & Barrel
fam·i· ly style: [fam-uh-lee, fam-lee] Welcome back Grate & Barrel! Finally open in Bridgeland after a long wait, Calgary’s grilled cheese spot is back in business and easy to find in its little pink house. Bright and cheerful, with orange, red and yellow stripes, there’s nothing over $10 on this small, music-themed menu, and lots to love. Cowpuncher has Korean-style pulled pork, kimchi, gochujang, provolone and jalapeno jack, and is memorable – eat with swigs of tomato soup and dip it in house-made ketchup. The large, wraparound patio will soon be open, and there’s a rumour of fondue on Sunday nights! New on 9th Avenue SE, Calgary is 1912 Inglewood. The ex-Carmichael space is completely refurbished with black and white décor, and artwork by local artists and photographers on the walls. Vancouver chef, Michael Marko’s menu is simple and very tasty, and the 8-seat upstairs lounge is ideal for private parties and watching hockey games on the comfy couches. And there’s a piano player on Saturdays! Congrats to Monki’s new owners, Kaushik and Adi, on seamlessly taking over one of Calgary’s best loved breakfast spots. Fear not, many of our faves are still on the menu, like brisket and Monki sausage hash, but they’ve introduced fresh new dishes such as wild mushroom fricassee with rosemary, fried egg and bacon. Don’t miss the superb mimosas – fresh pressed grapefruit and mint lemonade is a star!
(adj.) of or being a sit-down meal where dishes of food are placed on the table from which diners serve themselves
a. We relish the enthusiasm and zeal with which traditional Italian dining is to be enjoyed. b. Our open kitchen showcases our chefs preparing fresh and local ingredients.
2. a. Join us for dinner, enjoy a relaxing evening, our unique family
style service and the traditional Italian Piatti (courses). Your table comes alive when we present a variety of large offerings on platters or bowls within easy reach of all.
3. a. Our favourite nights are the ones where the room is alive with
sounds of clattering cutlery on plates, clinking of glassware, the bustling kitchen, all intermingled with animated discussion.
b. Available at vivo downtown. vivo downtown
10505 106 Street | 587-525-7500 firstname.lastname@example.org vivo ristorante westend
18352 Lessard Road | 780-756-7710 email@example.com
Off The Menu
Winebar Kensington’s Basil Cheesecake with Pine Nut Crumble and Strawberry Chips by LINDA GARSON photography by INGRID KUENZEL
We’re really happy to be asked to get the recipe for Winebar Kensington’s deconstructed basil cheesecake. It has been on the menu ever since they opened over eight years ago, and when you try it you’ll know why. Many thanks to Winebar for sharing! Winebar Kensington’s Basil Cheesecake with Pine Nut Crumble and Strawberry Chips Serves 4-5
½ cup sugar 1 cup (240 mL) water 110 g basil leaves 3-4 gelatine leaves 300 g cream cheese
1. Temper your cream cheese so it is
very soft in a stand mixer, or in a bowl if you’re doing this by hand.
2. Bring your water and sugar to a boil, while you soak the gelatine in ice water to bloom. Once sugar is completely dissolved, remove from heat.
3. Pour the syrup and basil into a
blender, and mix together on high until dark green and a smooth consistency.
4. Strain your syrup, and stir gelatine in. 8
5. Mix ¾ cup (180 mL) of basil syrup
with your cream cheese until fully incorporated. You’ll want the syrup to be slightly warm for this to work. It might be a little loose at this point, but will set in the fridge. Cool for 2-3 hours until set. Pine Nut Crumble Crust 110 g butter 675 g sugar ½ cup chopped pine nuts, (or any nut you prefer) 2/3 cup of sugar
Mix all ingredients until sandy and mealy, and it sticks together by squishing in your hand. Spread out the crumbly mix on a baking tray and bake at 350º F until golden brown, checking every 6 minutes.
Strawberry Chips Slice 6 strawberries as thin as you can get them with your knife, and bake at a super low temperature of 225-250º F for about 3-4 hours. You want them to be as crispy as possible but not burnt, so keep an eye on them. Garnish with a drizzle of balsamic crema (found in most Italian markets) Winebar Chef Michael Colosino says that as the cheesecake is deconstructed, you can get creative and have fun with however you choose to plate it. If there’s a dish in a local restaurant that you’d love to make, let us know at culinairemagazine.ca/contact-us, and we’ll do our very best to track it down for you!
L G AR Y
Book Review by KAREN MILLER
20 of Canada’s greatest chefs present
Inspired Cooking Featuring: M I C H A E L S M I T H / D A L E M A C K AY / W A R R E N B A R R
+ 17 more celebrity chefs forewo V I K rd by RAM VIJ
20 Of Canada’s Greatest Chefs Present: Inspired Cooking Fresh Air Publishing 2016
It’s very hard not to get inspired by this book. The heartfelt survivor stories of each individual’s struggles with cancer invoke compassion and respect. These stories reinforce that positive changes in lifestyle can have positive long-term physical and mental benefits. The 20 successful chefs from across Canada who agreed to lend themselves to this project have also either been touched in some way by the disease, or realized more than ever that it’s becoming necessary to take control of the health aspects of their lives. Many acknowledge that in general, their diners are also demanding healthier choices. Despite an emphasis on nutrition, the recipes included don’t sacrifice
taste and all things delicious. There are many recipes from nutritionists to be used as a base for the chef recipes, and all chefs favour local products when available. The Carrot Bolognaise on p.135 is so colourful and full of complex flavours with rutabaga “noodles” and a rich carrot based sauce, that you won’t miss the meat! The Turkey Breast ‘Porchetta Style’ from Calgary’s Connie de Sousa and John Jackson won’t disappoint those looking for familiar pork dish flavours. There are many tips on healthy ingredients and eating habits, but there are also dessert recipes from Canada’s most honoured pastry chefs. The Lemon Turmeric Pudding with Coconut Cream is golden, silky and heavenly! Benefitting InspireHealth Supportive Cancer Care InspireHealth is a support organization out of British Columbia offering all types of support and direction for those facing or dealing with a diagnosis of cancer. The nutritional aspect of care is at the forefront of, and paramount to, the success of the program. For more information on InspireHealth or to purchase the cookbook, go to inspiredhealth.com. All proceeds from the sale go towards their program.
Karen Miller is a former lawyer who got on the “know where your food comes from” bandwagon earlier than most and now focuses on foraging her daily food from local growers.
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Starting at 4pm every Tuesday firstname.lastname@example.org 403-252-4365 tangobistro.com
5 Ways To Prep Like A Chef by GABRIEL HALL
Long before you arrive at a restaurant, the chefs have already been in the kitchen for hours preparing your meal. They’ve made lists, tested recipes, ensured all their ingredients are sized and cut properly, and ensured the kitchen is ready to flawlessly produce whichever meal you order. Home cooks can follow the same principle. A little extra time spent prepping, especially if you’re cooking a large holiday meal for the family, or entertaining guests, allows you to spend more time chatting and drinking instead of trying to save the meal from last minute emergencies. Here are five prep tasks to help the athome chef make any meal a success! 10
Planning • When planning the menu, ask your guests about allergies and preferences. Scrambling to modify a dish at the last minute rarely turns out well. • It may seem obvious to read (or reread) the recipe and create your own lists and notes. Many people skip this and find themselves doing an emergency run to the market or fishing the instructions on the packaging out of the garbage.
tells you how to pick the ingredient at its best. • Completing the shopping a day or two in advance will give you time to re-think or find a new recipe if a critically important ingredient isn’t available. Or better yet, you may uncover some lovely in-season ingredients which may give you additional menu ideas.
• If you’re working with unfamiliar recipes, do a test run of the menu a week ahead of time to tweak portion sizing, cooking times, and seasoning.
• Make friends with the butcher, farmer, or vendor at boutique markets. They can often help save certain cuts of meats, recommend better ingredients, and give you a heads up on what’s coming in fresh.
Be an Informed Shopper
Play Knifey Spoony
• Research how to pick the best fruits, vegetables, and meats. Colours, textures, patterns of meat and fat; every ingredient has a unique indicator which
• A sharp knife is a safe knife. You’ll use more force and have less control of your knife if it is dull. Hone and strop your knife before use, or get it
sharpened if you need to work away some material to create a new, sharper edge.
• Waiting for a cold pan to come up to temperature is time consuming. Keep the pots and pans you’re going to use on the other half of the stove. They’ll absorb the wasted heat and come up to temperature quickly. The same rule applies if you’re poaching or doing pasta – keep some water just below boiling temperature.
• A good cutting board is vital. A heavy wood cutting board with rubber feet will give you a stable platform to work on, even on a wet countertop. If all you have is a light plastic board, wet a cloth and place it underneath to prevent slippage while slicing. • Keep separate cutting boards: one for veg and cooked items and another board for raw items. This will ensure that you don’t accidentally make yourself (or someone else) ill from eating dinner at your house.
Have some fun, and don’t be afraid to make substitutions
Mis en Place • Cut a few more ingredients than you think you’ll need. This may seem wasteful, but you’ll be grateful if you need to re-make something, or make additional portions. The extras can be repurposed for soups, stews, pizza toppings, or other meals. • Have a stack of clean rags to wipe your hands, clean your knife, make plates
presentable, and clear down your work area as you go. A clean workspace is a productive workspace. • A stack of metal prep bowls is also a must. Not only are they great for marinating items, mixing sauces, and organizing your prepped ingredients, they’re durable and easy to clean. • Keep a supply of oils, salt, peppers, and wines right next to the stove. As temperatures and cooking time can vary in seconds, having everything you need at your fingertips is essential.
Cook Before You Cook • Take everything out of the fridge at least 30 minutes before you start cooking. Tempering your ingredients will normalize cooking times to prevent burning, and ensure you get your meats to the right temperature. Undercooking steak may be fine, but undercooking chicken can be disastrous.
• Soups, desserts, and pre-plated cold appetizers can be done well in advance, plated, wrapped or covered, and left in the fridge or in the oven. Using a sous vide machine can also reduce the number of things you need to worry about during the cooking process.
A stack of metal prep bowls is also a must
Since you don’t have your own personal prep chef at home (unless you can con your significant other into that role), taking some extra time to prep will ensure that you’re in control when it comes time to impress your guests with your cooking skills. Gabriel Hall is a freelance writer who has traveled to many parts of the world to explore food and culture. His website, levoyagegourmand.com and his twitter, @voyagegourmand are living archives of his experiences.
...For Foodies & Beverage Lovers
ALBERTA / FOOD & DRINK / RECIPES :: VOLUME 5 NO.10 :: APRIL 2017
TO BUY OR NOT TO BUY:
ALBERTA BOUTIQUE COFFEE ROASTERS
What’s Your Corkscrew? | Lamb 3 Ways | Southern Wines : Northern Wines
In today’s busy world, you may not get a chance to pick up every issue of Culinaire. To ensure your copy, go to culinairemagazine.ca to have the next ten issues delivered right to your door. Order today — 10 issues for $50 + gst.
8224-104 Street — Edmonton, AB
/nextactpub @nextactpub 780.433.9345 — nextactpub.com
Soup Kitchen story and photography by DAN CLAPSON
Since this is an exciting birthday month for us at Culinaire, I spent some time scratching my head trying to think of a soup that could be considered celebratory. Eventually, “Italian Wedding” sounded the most festive… though its name has nothing to do with weddings at all, rather the marriage of flavours in the soup. Given we don’t have much fresh local produce here in Calgary yet, save spinach
and the last remaining cellared carrots, it seemed like a great fit.
meatballs, and once simmering, reduce to medium heat. Let cook for 15 minutes.
before serving. Once ladled into bowls, finish each bowl with drops of coldpressed canola oil.
This recipe is a great example of how a few Alberta-grown ingredients can come together for a fulfilling bowl of soup.
Alberta Wedding Soup Serves 4 Total prep and cook time 35 minutes
Meatballs: 225 g ground pork 2 medium eggs ¹⁄³ cup finely grated Sylvan Star Grizzly Gouda 3 Tbs breadcrumbs 1 tsp sea salt ¼ tsp ground black pepper
1. Place all ingredients in a large bowl and mix well until combined.
2. Form pork mixture into 16 small
meatballs, about 1.5 cms diameter or so. Set aside until ready to add to broth. Soup: 8 cups (2 L) chicken broth 3 medium carrots, coarsely grated 3 cups fresh spinach leaves, roughly chopped 2 Tbs (30 mL) grainy mustard To taste salt and pepper Cold-pressed canola oil, for finishing
1. Heat broth in a large pot on
medium-high heat. Add carrots and 12
2. Add chopped spinach and mustard to the pot, and continue to cook for another 10 minutes.
3. Season to taste with salt and pepper
Dan Clapson is a freelance food writer and columnist in Calgary. When he’s not writing about Canada’s amazing culinary scene, he is likely listening to 80s rock or 90s boy bands. Follow him on twitter @dansgoodside
Proud of your wine list? Your beer selection? Your spirits list? Culinaire Magazine is delighted to announce the launch of the inaugural Albertaâ€™s Finest Drinks Lists awards. EJudged by industry experts ENo cost to enter your list EResults published in September 2017 Culinaire Magazine
Go to culinairemagazine.ca/finest for more details
Bow Valley Ranche
Skip The Line-Up!
Five Alberta Mother’s Day Brunches That Take Reservations by ELIZABETH CHORNEY-BOOTH
When it comes to Mother’s Day, there’s no tradition stronger than a sit-down family brunch.
Day brunches, and do indeed take (and strongly recommend) reservations.
Heritage Park’s Selkirk Grille Calgary
Luckily, some special occasion restaurants do accept reservations, making for a seamless family experience.
Heritage Park is offering two brunches on Mother’s Day: brunchers looking for a buffet can attend a special Mother’s Day brunch in the Gasoline Alley Museum, while those who’d prefer a sitdown a la carte meal should reserve in the adjacent Selkirk Grille. For Mother’s Day, the Selkirk’s Chef de Cuisine Tobias Larcher is introducing some new spring items to his regular brunch menu, as well as special dishes designed for the big day.
Here are some notable Alberta restaurants that hold special Mother’s
“My inspiration for the new brunch menu is Canada’s 150th and local
But the popularity of no-reservation brunch restaurants has put a kink in the tradition — most moms don’t want to stand in an endless line waiting for a meal on what’s supposed to be their special day.
ingredients,” Larcher says. “We’re bringing classics back with a little twist. Our Mother’s Day menu will feature a salmon en croûte with a light garden salad and truffle vinaigrette, a classic dish with locally sourced ingredients and Heritage Park’s own garden greens. We’ll also have a new apple pie French toast, which was inspired by my wife and mother to my baby twins.”
Reservations for Selkirk Grille can be made at 403-268-8607. For more information or to buy tickets to the Gasoline Alley brunch, visit heritagepark.ca.
Bow Valley Ranche, Calgary
The setting at Bow Valley Ranche is unparalleled — the historic house in Fish Creek Provincial Park is the ultimate special occasion spot, and Chef Jenny Kang’s impeccably crafted food doesn’t get nearly as much fanfare it deserves. BVR’s regular weekend brunch menu is outstanding as it is — Kang focuses on Alberta ingredients reflecting the restaurant’s surroundings, with locally made sausage, house smoked salmon, elk and other game meat. For Mother’s Day, Kang is bringing in some new dishes as well, focused on a theme of springtime and flowers to pay tribute to both the season and the moms in the crowd. For reservations, call at 403-476-1310 or book through Open Table.
Chateau Lacombe Hotel Edmonton
Take the mom in your life for a spin and a spectacular view of the river valley with a brunch at the Chateau Lacombe Hotel. The hotel’s 24th floor revolving La Ronde Restaurant does a Mother’s Day brunch, complete with swanky items like prime rib, eggs benedict, baked salmon with orange butter sauce, and a wide array of desserts. To accommodate more guests, Chateau Lacombe also hosts a second Mother’s Day brunch with the same buffet menu in its Alberta Ballroom on the main floor. To extend family celebrations, the hotel is also offering guests a chance to participate in special Mother’s Day activities on its main floor promenade. Kids and parents can spend some time colouring, checking out roving balloon artists, or hamming it up in the family photo booth. Reservations can be made at 780-420-8366 or laronde@ chateaulacombe.com
Chateau Lacombe Hotel
Union Bank Inn, Edmonton
A downtown Edmonton boutique hotel, the Union Bank Inn offers the pomp and luxury of a high-end hotel on a more intimate scale. The hotel’s restaurant only seats 60, making reservations for either the 10:30 a.m. or 12:30 p.m. Mother’s Day brunch seating an absolute must. The Union Bank Inn offers a $39.95 à la carte menu, where diners will be treated to a four-course meal, starting with pastries and breakfast parfaits, then followed by a choice of entrée and a family-style selection of desserts. The entrée selection consists of a couple of breakfast items and more lunch-like choices so guests can choose something that suits their tastes (not everyone loves eggs in the early afternoon). Because the room is so small, the hotel asks for a credit card number to hold tables — call 780-401-2222 to reserve. Union Bank Inn
The Lake House Courtesy Jason Dziver
The Lake House, Calgary
Known as one of Calgary’s most romantic restaurants, The Lake House is an elegant locale to take moms to indulge in some Canadian-inspired cuisine. Chef Thomas Neukom’s elevated à la carte brunch menu includes favourites like lobster and prawn benedict; a wild mushroom, kale and duck omelette; and a careful selection of Canadian cheese. “The inspiration for our Mother’s Day Brunch menu originates from the opportunity to gather all your loved ones around one table,” Neukom says. “Our menu focuses on creative twists on classic brunch items that pique the curiosity of each guest, while still staying true to our renowned Rocky Mountain cuisine and use of fresh and locally sourced ingredients.” Reservations can be made through Open Table or at 403-225-3939. Elizabeth is a Calgary-based writer, who has been writing about music and food for her entire adult life. She is a published cookbook author and part of the new team behind the Best of Bridge. 15
Chefs' Tips Tricks!
Five Hacks for Cooking With Smoked Foods by ANNA BROOKS photography by INGRID KUENZEL
No greeting beats the sound of crackling wood and the smell of savoury smoke when you walk into one of those special eateries dedicated to smoked foods. Normally we associate fire and smoke with campfires, a pitched tent and stretching out under the stars, but smoking has moved indoors, permeating food and drink culture in restaurants across Alberta.
We asked three chefs why they took up smoking, and where to start for the home chef interested in one of the oldest methods of cooking.
The History Behind Smoke Chef Ryan O’Flynn from The Guild, one of Calgary’s newer smoking establishments known for dishes like their succulent wood-grilled squid and applewood roasted chicken, says his love for smoked foods sparked when he learned of Canada’s long history behind this style of cooking. “If you go back thousands of years, the First Nations had been smoking with birch in Alberta and the Northwest Territories for as long as the history books go back,” O’Flynn explains. “It’s happened naturally for humans to utilize smoke as a necessity. It’s in our DNA and we don’t even know it.” O’Flynn says he was fascinated after a trip up to Fort Providence, N.W.T, where the Dene people taught him how to
Chef Ryan O’Flynn 16
utilize birch smoke to cook and preserve meats, and concoct glazes using smoke and tree sap.
Jane Bond's Jerk Chicken
“When we glaze things like our rack of ribs, we don’t just make a barbecue sauce with Coke. We us pine sap, wild tree glaze, botanicals from the forest,” he says. “You can take natural things from the forest to make something that tastes better than barbecue sauce, and is better for you.”
Smoking as Preservative Jenny Burthwright, owner of Jane Bond BBQ in Calgary, is known for her southern-style cuisine, grilling up everything from smoked brisket to fried catfish. While Burthwright says smoking foods adds a distinct, unique flavour to dishes, the technique also serves to preserve food.
Jane Bond's Jerk Chicken Serves 4
if your beef is great on its own, there’s no need to smoke it.”
“Smoking adds great natural flavours while promoting the low-and-slow technique that makes smoked foods so delicious,” she says. “In addition, smoked foods have a longer shelf-life.”
6 full chicken legs Jerk marinade (can be purchased at Jane Bond BBQ or most grocery stores in the ethnic section) Smoker/Kamado grill
Pizarro says he smokes everything from celery root to beets, and Provision has become famous for their smoked potato dish, which fires up your palate with its simple, cherry smoke-infused flavour.
Smoke is both an antioxidant and antimicrobial agent, and is used to preserve ham, fish, poultry and even foods like nuts and cheese. While there was a period of abstaining from smoking after the discovery of chemical preservatives in wood, there’s been a shift back to smoking with natural woods like hickory, maple, birch, oak and cherry wood.
1. Marinate full chicken legs in jerk
“I always aim for one smoky dish with vegetables at Provision,” he says. “I find the different layers of flavour help generate a protein feel from a vegetable.”
sauce for one day.
2. Preheat your smoker to
225º F. Place your chicken skin side up on the smoker rack, and brush on a good amount of jerk marinade before smoking.
3. Close up the smoker and let cook for two hours. Remove chicken legs and enjoy!
What Else Can You Smoke? Most chefs will say you can smoke just about anything. But Chef Daniel Pizarro with Provision, Calgary’s newest veggie-forward spot nestled in Central Memorial Park, says unlike other chefs, his favourite foods to smoke are vegetables. “I mainly enjoy lightly smoked produce,” Pizarro says. “I feel simplicity is best, and
Chef Daniel Pizarro 17
5. After the potatoes are smoked, place them in a pan with some foaming butter on low heat, turning every two minutes to get nice, crispy skin.
6. Season the potatoes, and then finish
with a little garlic aioli, a soft poached egg, and some arugula dressed with olive oil and lemon.
Smoke and Save The beauty of smoking is its relatively low cost.
Provision’s Smoked Potatoes Serves 2
450 g baby creamer potatoes 2 Tbs kosher salt 2 Tbs butter 1 egg Dash olive oil Squeeze of lemon 1 cup wood chips (cherry) Arugula for garnish
1. Place potatoes in a medium sized pot. Fill with cold water and add salt. Gently simmer potatoes for one hour, until completely soft. Strain and cool.
2. Place the cooled potatoes on the
counter, and gently apply pressure with your palm until you feel the skin split. Only crush slightly or the potatoes will be too overwhelmed with smoke.
3. In an old stovetop vegetable steamer, place your woodchips in the bottom of the pot. To get the woodchips going, place on low-medium heat on the stove. With a torch or barbecue lighter, light the chips.
4. Once the chips are on fire, place the
potatoes in the perforated top and put the lid on (the fire will die out due to lack of oxygen). Leave the heat on for five minutes, then turn off and let sit for an additional five minutes. 18
Chef O’Flynn says while he enjoys the challenge of working with full fire logs, he recommends starting out with wood chips — which can be found in a variety of flavours at places like Canadian Tire — for the home chef. “Chips smoke a lot easier. You can use your barbecue, but if the home cook wants to take it seriously, egg-barbecues (Kamado grill) smoke things very well,” O’Flynn explains. “A lot of people use cherry wood, but I use birch because it’s indigenous to our land. You can even buy birch and have it chipped — that’s a good way to keep it authentic.” Chef Burthwright uses all types of woods and flavours to make her spiced rubs and roasted meats at Jane Bond BBQ, but says cherry wood is her favourite for its subtle, sweet smoke.
“Cherry wood is commonly used in Alberta due to its accessibility and lower cost,” she says. “Smoke your meats typically no higher than 200º F to avoid shrinkage and drying out the meat.”
Smoking with Hay Did you know there’s another way to smoke grass (last smoke joke, we promise!)? Believe it or not, hay is a great alternative for smoking foods. Growing in mass quantities across the province, hay is also extremely easy to get your hands on, and is just about the most affordable product any chef could work with. Chef O’Flynn says hay is a go-to for simple smokes, adding that the sharp, yellow grass is easy to light using a blowtorch. “You can fill your barbecue with hay, and then blowtorch it,” he explains. “I’ve used hay to smoke a piece of bison or smoked salmon on ice. I also like hay-smoking potatoes before I mash them.” Visit us online at culinairemagazine.ca for Chef O’Flynn’s recipe for Hay-Smoked French Fries. Anna Brooks is Culinaire’s managing editor. A Mount Royal journalism graduate, stories have pulled her overseas to pursue international work in India, Africa and Thailand. Follow her on Twitter @Anna_Brooksie
More Alberta Spots To Get Great Smoked Food 1. MEAT
5. The Palomino Smokehouse
2. Sloppy Hoggs
6. Holy Smoke BBQ, Calgary;
8216 104 Street, Edmonton 587-520-6338 9563 118 Avenue NW, Edmonton 780-477-2408
3. Stanley’s Smokehouse, Fairmont
Banff Springs; 405 Spray Avenue, Banff; 403-762-6860
4. Big T’s BBQ & Smokehouse Calgary; for locations visit bigtsbbq.com
109 7 Avenue SW, Calgary 403-532-1911
for locations visit holysmokebbq.ca
7. The Coal Shed Smoke House
6512 Bowness Rd NW, Calgary 403-455-8055
8. Butcher Block & Smoke House
390 Baseline Rd, Sherwood Park 780-467-7677
EXPERIENCE SPRING Culmina’s new vintages of Saignée, Unicus and Decora are now available.
4790 Wild Rose Street, Oliver BC | 250.498.0789 | email@example.com | culmina.ca
Sharable, locally inspired cuisine, masterfully paired with our select onsite reserve
2017-04-05 12:08 PM
Breakfast, brunch, lunch, dinner and late night dining options Over 100 whisk(e)ys, ryes, bourbons and scotches
820 Centre Street SE Calgary
ALBERTA'S FINEST WHISK(E)Y BAR & RESTAURANT
Cheers To Your Health: A Guide To Alberta’s Kombucha Makers by TRACY HYATT
It wasn’t that long ago when buying a health-conscious drink commercially in Alberta meant a blended juice or smoothie. Quietly but quickly over the past few years, retailers have started stocking their shelves with another tasty option – kombucha, a fermented sweet tea packed with gut-healing probiotics, acetic acids and antioxidants.
SCOBY (symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast) the fermentation process begins. Once the initial fermentation is finished, fresh or frozen fruit, purees, juice and even herbs and spices are added to flavour the kombucha.
No worries if you can’t make it to the brewing facility. A few shops around Red Deer, including Glow Juicery, a float centre in the same industrial park and bakery, offer this healthy brew.
The majority of offerings on the market are from the U.S., but things are changing. From Grande Prairie to Calgary, a crop of creative Alberta entrepreneurs are nurturing a growing demand into successful kombucha businesses.
Here are five kombucha makers in Alberta to check out for a taste of locally brewed goodness — grab your growler and go!
While training for the 2014 Sochi Olympic games, former bob sledder Emily Baadsvik started drinking kombucha to boost her energy levels and maximize her nutrition.
For the uninitiated, kombucha tastes like a sweet, tart vinegar that’s slightly carbonated. The base ingredient is organic tea. While there are unlimited varieties of tea, black and green teas are commonly used in kombucha. Like wine making, the type of tea affects the taste and flavour profile. Sugar is added to the tea and when it’s mixed with a bacteria culture known as 20
Wild Child Brew, Red Deer
After brewing for more than a year from their Blackfalds facility, this central Alberta company opened their own retail space in Red Deer in January. The “kombrewery” offers five rotating flavours on tap. The flavours are fanciful and fruity, balanced with an aromatic twist. Root beer spice or elderberry lavender anyone? Customers can bring in their own refillable containers or purchase one-litre Wild Child Brew mini-growlers.
Wild Tea Kombucha, Calgary
Having an aversion to dairy meant that Baadsvik’s diet wasn’t very probioticrich, so she turned to kombucha for its natural oxidants. A year after the Olympics, Baadsvik and her business partner, Brigette Freel, purchased brewing equipment and moved into a manufacturing facility in Calgary’s Foothills neighbourhood. Wild Tea Kombucha’s approach is all about showcasing the drink’s versatility and having fun with kombucha. The names of their regular flavours – strawberry daiquiri, pineapple mojito and hard lime – are a playful riff on cocktails. The pair also encourages customers to use kombucha as a vinegar substitute when preparing food such as chicken marinade. They also concoct sinfully delicious cocktails with their kombuchas, and are partnering with local breweries and distilleries to create tasty collaborations.
Effervescent Tea Co., Beaverlodge
Brewing kombucha has been a family affair for Beaverlodge’s Lon and Nan Thiessen since 2015. The husband and wife duo operate Alberta’s most northerly brewery from a converted barn on the family farm.
Steelhead Trout Ceviche
to organizations like Mealshare and LeftOvers Calgary. If you’re wavering about trying kombucha, you can pick up single serving bottles of TrueBuch at retailers across Alberta. Traditionalists might opt for True Buch ginger or blueberry rooibos, but there are a handful of unconventional flavours to fill your growler with like vanilla chai, mojito mint and root beer.
True Buch, Calgary
One of the oldest commercial kombucha makers in Alberta (if you can call 2014 old), this Calgary-based company is synonymous with giving back to the community. Owners Conrad and Louisa Ferrel have committed to reinvesting 10 percent of their profits
Kombucha can be used in many dishes. Here’s an easy and delicious recipe from Chef Michael Christen of Season’s restaurant in Bowness Park, Calgary for you to try at home.
Steelhead Trout Ceviche
The state-of-the-art facility churns out three different flavoured kombuchas made from fruit puree and juices – raspberry, grape and pomegranate. Effervescent Tea kombucha strikes all the sweet-tart notes one would expect from a drink made from green tea. Lon experimented with other tea varietals, but her personal preference leaned towards the sweet flavour and aromatic profile of green tea. Effervescent Tea is carried at 37 retailers, most located in the Peace River country.
business — it’s also one of few Alberta companies to use honey instead of cane sugar. The key to making a great tasting product, says Lungard, is sourcing fresh ingredients to time with the brewing process.
Happy Belly, Chestermere
After one sip of kombucha while attending a conference in the U.S., Victoria Lungard knew she was hooked. She was so impressed, that once she returned home to Chestermere, she set about learning everything she could about the fermented drink. That was back when there weren’t too many people in Alberta making kombucha. Despite the increased competition in the market today, Happy Belly is still a pioneer in the kombucha
320 g steelhead trout, diced small ¹⁄³ cup (80 mL) Hard Lime Wild Tea Kombucha 3 Tbs (45 mL) lemon juice 100 g avocado, diced 100 g tomatoes, chopped 4 leaves radicchio 20 g cilantro Micro greens to garnish To taste salt
Mix together kombucha and lemon juice, and spoon over trout so it cures. Add salt to taste. Add avocado, tomatoes and cilantro, and mix gently. Place on radicchio leaves and garnish with micro greens. Tracy Hyatt is the associate managing editor of AMA Insider. Her passion is everything Albertan, there’s not a cattle drive, town rodeo, or cowboy cookout that wouldn't tempt her. 21
Hot Okanagan: The Classics Edition by JEANETTE MONTGOMERY
The British Columbia wine world is old enough to have produced a handful of veterans, and young enough for us to still welcome new faces each year. While it’s all well and good to point out the shiny and new, growth in the B.C. wine community owes thanks to wineries with staying power that have set the stage for those new players.
It’s time for a closer look at a few in the industry who took chances for today’s emerging talent, and what these classics do to remain top of mind.
bottles, organic fertilizers, and on-site composting. The Old Vines Restaurant is also a partner in the Vancouver Aquarium’s Ocean Wise Program.
“We’ve been around for a while,” says marketing manager Lindsay Kelm. “So when we make changes like those, they’re just a natural next step.”
First vintage: 1989 Why it’s cool: Quiet perseverance, consistent wines, and unapologetically youthful gamay Wine to watch: Subtle, layered, sea-briny Rosemary’s Block 2014 Chardonnay Since 1989, the Stewart family has grown a small family business into a 60,000 case-per-year operation. This success brings with it inevitable expansion; a rustic log house tasting room was replaced by a modern building with unparalleled views of lakefront vineyards. Still, Quails’ Gate harvests all 200 acres by hand.
Winemaker Nikki Callaway joined the team in 2013, bringing a lighter touch with oak and embracing the beauty of young gamay in the Quails’ Gate Cailleteau Gamay Nouveau. Mature vineyards bring minerality to chardonnay, riesling and pinot noir. A Collector Series highlights the best of the best, and after almost 30 years, the best of Quails’ Gate is very good. The winery and restaurant are open year-round.
Over the years, the winery has embraced sustainable solutions like using Eco-glass
3303 Boucherie Road, West Kelowna quailsgate.com
Wild Goose Vineyards & Winery First vintage: 1989
Why it’s cool: 2nd farm-gate license in B.C., 3rd generation, riesling (before it was hip) Wine to watch: Ever-deepening, zesty and lengthy, any vintage Stoney Slope Riesling When Adolf Kruger bought land in Okanagan Falls in 1983, it was unknown and unproven for grape growing. By 1990 he opened Wild Goose, the second winery license of its kind in the province. Sons Roland and Hagen eventually took over the business, and Adolf “retired” to head tractor driver. In November 2016, the Krugers bid farewell to their family patriarch, a loss that resonated through the industry and marked the close of a chapter in B.C. wine. The original direction set by Adolf lives within Wild Goose, and Roland credits their success to maintaining focus. “We improve processes where it makes sense while taking risks. Like in 2014, when we opened the Smoke and Oak Bistro,” Roland says. “What were we thinking? But we do things the way we’ve done them for 30 years.” The vineyard is pruned to the same Pendelbogen system started decades
ago, and aside from a few new technologies, the winemaking remains largely unchanged.
Summerhill Pyramid Winery
What keeps it fresh for Wild Goose? “Our relationships with staff and visitors,” says Roland. “Hiring the right people and seeing things through visitors’ eyes.” Over the years, the winery embraced its white wine strengths and limited red wine production. Adolf no longer drives the tractor, but his spirit is felt in the ethos of Wild Goose. The winery re-opened in April, the Bistro opens in May. 2145 Sun Valley Way, Okanagan Falls wildgoosewinery.com
Summerhill Pyramid Winery First vintage: 1991
Why it’s cool: B.C. organic champions; one of the province’s sparkling wine originals Wine to watch: Curvy-classicmeets-modern-fresh Cipes 2008 Blanc de Noirs Summerhill Pyramid Winery was one of the first to recognize the region’s sparkling wine potential, and they lead the charge in organic and biodynamic
farming with a touch of mysticism. They’re at the heart of where the BC wine industry is and arguably should be: risk-taking, adventurous and inviting. Summerhill proves itself at international competitions and wins us over with down to earth hospitality. Their creativity leads to unexpected benefits, like the challenging 2011 vintage and their Blanc de Franc. This traditional method sparkler is made with cabernet franc harvested mid-November. “We had a blizzard,” says CEO Ezra Cipes. “The grapes spent two days buried under two feet of snow.” Nutty with marzipan in a pale antique gold, it’s a wine made in that spirit of adventure. And the winery vibe reflects that of its people. “There’s no velvet rope here,” says Ezra. Welcoming and open, the team was bursting at the seams before completing work on a new cellar with outdoor tasting bar. The winery and Sunset Bistro are open year-round.
Wild Goose Vineyards & Winery
4870 Chute Lake Road, Kelowna, summerhill.bc.ca 23
Tinhorn Creek Vineyards First vintage: 1994
Why it’s cool: Sustainability on the land + in the cellar + in the boardroom = heart Wine to watch: Rich and robust, sunlight-and-hayloft 2014 Cabernet Franc There’s an old adage about not mixing friendship with business, but don’t tell that to the Oldfields or the Shaughnessys. The four started Tinhorn Creek Vineyards in 1994, taking it from humble beginnings in a gutted-out house to a business producing more than 40,000 cases of wine per year and employing 29 people year-round. Through it all, they’re still friends. The last 20+ years is an evolution of sustainability, from environmental stewardship to business practices. Using Stelvin (screw cap) on their entire portfolio was a risk that paid off through improved quality control and a reduced carbon footprint. “If you’re going to be in this industry, you might as well affect change,” says Sandra Oldfield. The winemaker-turned-CEO is active on several wine and tourism boards, and
Noble Ridge photograph courtesy Lauren Forzani
in 2016 was named one of Canada’s Most Powerful Women. A responsibility to their employees helps keep Tinhorn grounded while contributing to their success. “It starts with growing the best grapes to make the best wine, but it gets more layered,” she adds. Time allowed them to focus on and invest in their people. They look at what people bring with them and credit many of their successes to employees’ ideas. This should come as no surprise at a winery started – and maintained – by four friends. The winery is open all year, with Miradoro Restaurant open March through December.
photograph courtesy Gord Wylie Photography
Vines are trained on a Geneva Double Curtain system, increasing airflow and reducing a need for sprays. “We need to be fair to the land,” says Leslie. “It’s good for everybody.”
537 Tinhorn Creek Road (off Road 7) Oliver, tinhorn.com
So what keeps Leslie and Jim motivated?
“The people”, says Leslie. “Seeing our staff realize what they do has value. It’s amazing.”
First vintage: 2003 Why it’s cool: Not new and not quite classic – established, but plenty yet to discover Wine to watch: Strawberry-covered-slate-and-graphite 2014 Pinot Noir Reserve In 2001, Calgarians Jim and Leslie D’Andrea bought an acreage in Okanagan Falls with plans of starting a winery.
By 2003, the self-proclaimed city slickers acquired enough vineyard and knowledge to produce 540 cases. What they lacked in experience they made up for in good hiring, and hands-on learning. Leslie studied viticulture at Okanagan College while Jim juggled a law practice with trips to the new property. Their goal was to make the best wines possible from the highest quality grapes they could grow; working sustainably made the most sense.
“We didn’t think to ask if the tractor came with it,” says Leslie with a laugh.
From knowing almost every person and place that sells their wine, to creating the “King’s Ransom” tier only in exceptional vintages, Noble Ridge lives up to its name. The winery re-opened in April. 2320 Oliver Ranch Road Okanagan Falls, nobleridge.com Jeannette Montgomery lives in BC wine country, with access to plenty of research material – and a large cellar.
O U R PA T I O â€™ S A R E I N F U L L B L O O M
T E RW I L L E GA R
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5 Ingredient Cocktails
by LINDA GARSON photography by SHANE HAUSER and INGRID KUENZEL
When we’re making cocktails at home, we’re always looking for creative and delicious recipes, but ones that are relatively simple to make with not too many hard to find ingredients. As we’re all about ‘5’ this month, we asked two Alberta mixologists for recipes that involved only five ingredients for us all to be able to enjoy at home!
Jordan Clemens Bar Clementine in Edmonton Clemens’ cocktail is all about the way that his favourite African coffees taste – a complex balance between hightoned fruit notes (think strawberry, blueberry, raspberry) and deep, savoury and earthy notes (think of the fresh soil on those fruits). To fully capture the flavour of the coffees, Bar Clementine uses fresh roasted coffee straight from Edmonton’s Transcend Coffee, and brews it for 24 hours into a concentrated cold brew coffee.
“Naturally, we sought the spirit base for this cocktail in the fruity and earthy complexity of tequila and mescal,” says Clemens. “Rounding out the implied fruit from the tequila and cold brew coffee is our blueberry cordial and fresh lime juice.” The result is a cocktail that tastes like an extension of the coffee itself, changing on your palate from sweet, refreshing and fruity, to a smoky and earthy finish. This is a cocktail that is equal parts contemplative and quaffable – perfect for spring evenings and long afternoons!
1½ oz Siembra Valles Blanco Tequila (or any 100% agave tequila) ½ oz San Juan Alipus Mezcal (or any other quality mezcal) ¾ oz blueberry cordial ½ oz fresh lime juice 1 oz African cold brew coffee
Shake all ingredients with ice and strain into a rocks glass with fresh ice. Garnish with a lime wheel (Bar Clementine dust their cocktail with house made blueberry salt).
Mickey MacDonald PRLR Lounge in Calgary MacDonald has designed two cocktails in accordance with characters from the French folktale, La Belle et la Bête, also known as Beauty and the Beast. They are the visual and flavour interpretations of the characters translated in drinks, and meant to be served as the characters themselves, together. Beauty is a delicate light pink with flowers on top, whereas the Beast is a medium brown, with broken foam and mid-tone chamomile flowers. “The Beauty comes off easy drinking, delicate and floral with an innate sweetness,” explains MacDonald. “The lemon juice cuts the inherently sweet aspects of the liqueurs and helps the Beauty to maintain balance.”
He notes that all the liqueurs are French, with the English influence of gin. The Beast, on the other hand, is earthy, musky, and with a gnarly liquor-forward profile. “The beast is royalty, thus deserves a vermouth of royal status and only the strongest of flavours found in Scotches and whiskeys,” he says. “A little bit of lemon maintains some similarity to its counterpart, the Beauty, and completes them as a pair.”
Shake all ingredients, then add an egg white and dry shake. Shake with ice, then double strain into a coupe glass and garnish (PRLR Lounge garnish their cocktail with dried rose petals).
½ oz rye whisky ½ oz Scotch whisky ½ oz Fernet Branca ½ oz Vermouth Royal ¼ oz lemon juice
Shake all ingredients then double strain into a coupe glass. (PRLR Lounge garnish their cocktail with chamomile flowers).
1 oz gin 1/3 oz Chambord 1/3 oz St. Germaine 1/3 oz Drambuie 1 oz lemon juice
Giddy Up! Five Alberta Ranches by DIANA NG
Calgary isn’t known as Cowtown for nothing. While oil and gas seems to dominate Albertarelated news, the agriculture industry is a major economic driver and source of pride for the province.
coveted, Wagyu-cross herd of about 1,000 cattle yearly.
The largest cattle-producing province in Canada, Alberta makes up for 44 percent of the country’s production, contributing $12.7 billion to the economy through beef, and exporting roughly half of its beef to other provinces within the country.
Wagyu cattle is fed up to three times longer than commercial cattle, which makes for a higher grade of beef even above USDA Prime and Canada Prime. It’s not only chefs trying to snatch up all of BLW’s products, as we can probably tell from the mentions on numerous menus — consumers can get their hands on Wagyu ground beef, patties, sausage, charcuterie and jerky at local farmers’ markets, butcher shops and even online.
There are more than 20,000 beef cattle producers in the province, but here are five doing extraordinary work in producing high quality beef.
Brant Lake Wagyu
It’s no secret that Alberta beef is lauded for its high quality at home and abroad, but standing out from the pack is Brant Lake Wagyu, which produces a highly
Since operations began in 1990, when the Ball family started raising and breeding Wagyu, the ranch has expanded to breeding Wagyu-Angus cross, trademarking the brand in 2012. Though the ranch supplies domestically as well as internationally (and increasingly in Asia), the heart of the operation remains fairly lean, with about six people directly raising and caring for the herd.
Pine Haven Colony
Completely the opposite from typical commercial cattle ranching, Pine Haven Hutterite Colony — located just outside of Wetaskiwin — takes a more holistic, communal approach to farming.
Established in 1997 and home to about 20 families, Pine Haven Colony emphasizes animal welfare and the benefits sustainable farming brings to the consumer. Starting with beef, Pine Haven herds are fed 100 percent grass diet. Hogs are raised without antibiotics or hormones on a vegetarian diet of locally grown grain from their own farm. All other animals like chickens, turkeys and ducks are also freerun and grain-fed. The self-sufficient colony raises all its own poultry, hogs and cattle, and sells them at the on-site retail store in order to control the quality and practices of animals at every stage.
Back in 1960, Doug Munton started Alcan Angus with his first Black Angus female. The third generation family-run ranch eventually evolved into Benchmark Angus in 2003, when the heart of Alberta’s agricultural industry was hit after a Canadian cow south of the border was found with a bout of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), better known as mad cow disease. This prompted Doug’s son, Mike, to make changes on all levels — starting with breeding.
Brant Lake Wagyu 28
Beef. Consumers may know the name from its popular shop and burger bar at the Calgary Farmers’ Market, but its products are as popular with chefs as they are with the home cook. The 100-year-old Zentner family-run ranch 14,000-acres south of Cypress Hills is home to 1,500 Angus and Gelbvieh cattle. Not only do the Zentners raise hormone-free and antibiotic-free cattle, they also raise them humanely and in a detail oriented way, carefully choosing only bulls and heifers that exhibit desirable qualities like health, size and marbling. Today, Mike Benchmark has four fulltime staff on the ranch and 17 on the meat production side to keep up with increasing demand. Get an unadulterated taste of Benchmark Angus’ products with its natural Angus beef patty or flavourful sausages and jerky.
Primo Valley Beef Co.
individual vacuum-sealed bags, Primo Valley considers the final taste and experience for all their consumers.
Consumers can pick up Silver Sage beef directly from its shop at the Calgary Farmers’ Market or high-end retail outlets like Blush Lane.
Another ranch that supplies multiple top restaurants in Calgary with naturally raised beef is Silver Sage
Diana Ng is a co-founder of Eat North and freelance writer who will eat your food when you’re not looking.
It may seem like a stretch for clothing designers to venture into agriculture, but Dan and Joanne Berezan — the entrepreneurs behind Dolly Varden Outdoor Clothing — were always passionate about life on the ranch. Upon realizing they shared a common vision with their neighbours, former NHL player Dean Kennedy and his wife Tammy, about sustainable ranching, the couples started Primo Valley. Just south of Pincher Creek, this 3,500-acre ranch raises natural, hormone-free, antibioticfree, grass-fed and Alberta barleyfinished Alberta Angus beef. It was an eye-opening experience for the ranchers when they realized the disparity between the retail price of high quality beef, and the premium that ranchers are paid. The couples brought their business savvies to the operation, selling and delivering directly to consumers to reduce costs. From the feed to aging the meat for 21 days to packaging the beef in
RAMEN FROM SCRATCH
THIS. CHANGES. EVERYTHING. nomiyarestaurant.com
5 Sweet Spots For Custom Birthday Cakes by MALLORY FRAYN
This month marks our fifth birthday, and what better way to celebrate than to eat all the cake? And we’re not talking about the grocery store variety you pick up last minute on your way home from work. This is a special occasion after all, and deserves some proper planning. In honour of that, we’ve rounded up some of the best places to get custom cakes across the province. From Calgary to Edmonton, and out in Canmore, these are some of our top picks that truly do cake justice. You only turn five once, so make it a party to remember. All great parties necessitate an even greater cake!
Canmore’s Kake by Darci has been open for just over a year, but in that time she’s already made quite the name for herself. As Darci Weil puts it, her geode cake “blew up on the internet” last year, and the momentum has only continued to build ever since. Not bad for someone with no formal training who decided to open a bakery on a whim! The bakery doesn’t have a storefront, meaning you can only get custom cakes made for your special occasions, but that doesn’t seem like such a bad proposition. If you’re curious about what your options are, her Instagram account @kakebydarci will definitely suck you in with its stunning, yet playful designs.
Darci personally loves the classics, like vanilla and chocolate cake, but says that her strawberry pink velvet cake is also very popular. She also isn’t afraid to get creative with more unique flavours like
black sesame and lavender (many of which can be found featured on Blake Canmore’s dessert menu). And don’t forget the buttercream! It’s a European style, meringue-based buttercream that’s rich but not too sweet. “I could eat it by the bowl full,” Darci admits, and we can definitely get on board with that, too. 110, 112 Kananaskis Way, Canmore, 403-609-8482, kakecanmore.com
The Teatro Group’s Alforno Bakery and Café isn’t just a place to pop in for breakfast, lunch or dinner, although you can totally do that, too. They also offer a selection of pastries and other sweets, all made in-house daily.
Plus, they do cakes and you definitely can’t forget about those. You can grab them by the slice if you’re craving a little something sweet, or you can call ahead to order an entire cake for your special occasion. Just be sure to give 48 hours notice for a custom cake, or 24 hours notice if you’d like to personalize one of their preexisting cakes. The only question that remains is, what to choose? Alforno’s chocolate cake is surely a crowd pleaser, with four layers of fudgy chocolate cake and a decadent chocolate frosting to seal the deal. After all, you can never go wrong with chocolate on chocolate. They offer other standard flavours, but also love to get creative and are constantly changing their offerings. Seasonal rotations can include everything from black forest cake to strawberry banana mousse cake. Or if you have an idea in mind you are really keen on, send them a request so they can customize a cake to your desires. And if you really do need something last minute, you can always see what’s in the display case and pick something right then and there! 222 7 Street SW, Calgary 403-454-0308, alforno.ca
The Art of Cake, Edmonton
Gloria Bednarz and her partner Guenter Hess have been designing custom cakes since 2007, but the history of
Upholding The Tradition Red Cup Distillery is a craft distillery in Vegreville using local grain, in house green malt and prairie moonshine recipes in a locally made 250 and 1,000-gallon Edmonton-made pot stills. Available in liquor stores across Alberta in April.
www.redcupdistillery.ca @redcupdistillery RedCupDistillery2015 Vegreville, Alberta, Canada
Sugared & Spiced Cakes, Edmonton
Amy Nachtigall has been baking her whole life, but it wasn’t until 2012 that she decided to debut her treats to the world. In the past five years, she has gone from sharing her sweets at a stall in the Highlands Farmers’ Market, to graduating from the baking program at NAIT and being featured in a variety of local and national publications for her creative desserts.
The Art of Cake
Her “cake club” is essentially a subscription to receive cakes for three special occasions per year. Memberships are tough to get, but you can check her website to stay up to date if new spots open up.
The Art of Cake extends far beyond the past 10 years. “Our carrot cake is a very old family recipe that we’ve been using for 30 years,” Gloria says. When asked what’s so special about it, she’s hesitant to divulge any specific trade secrets, but explains that it contains lots of carrots, just the right amount of spice, and is topped with a traditional cream cheese icing that she emphasizes, “is not too sweet.” Tradition is a theme at The Art of Cake. Their chocolate cake is an old-fashioned style with plenty of sour cream in the batter to add richness and moisture. “It’s just like my grandma used to make,” is one of Gloria’s favourite compliments. Even if your grandma wasn’t a baker, her cakes scream childhood nostalgia. Whether you’re looking for a single tiered cake or an elaborate custom design for a milestone birthday or any other special occasion, The Art of Cake will whip you up a masterpiece. Oh, and don’t forget they also offer a selection of cookies and confections if you really want to go all out with dessert! 11807C 105 Avenue NW, Edmonton, 780-485-5517, theartofcake.ca 32
Double up on dessert and be sure to order some cookies as well
Her cakes come in a variety of popular flavours like chocolate peanut butter and cookies and cream, but she also takes special requests for any new and exciting flavour combinations you may have in mind. Double up on dessert and be sure to order some cookies as well, for him and for her. Her “man’s man” cookie is loaded to the brim with peanut butter, peanut butter cups, chocolate and bacon, and her “girl’s night in” cookie contains the perfect mélange of chocolate, caramel, raspberry dessert wine, and sea salt to round out the sweetness. Either of them is good enough to make celebrating birthdays with cookies your new tradition! 10571a 114 Street NW, Edmonton, sugaredandspiced.ca
Swirl Cakes, Calgary
If you’re searching for a custom-made cake in Calgary, look no further than Swirl Cakes. As owner and lead designer Lynnette MacDonald puts it, “we are fueled by a desire to make cakes
that defy physics and push beyond conventional boundaries into the extraordinary realm of exceptional desserts.” Not only does she meet with clients one-on-one for design consultations, all of her cakes are made fresh in her kitchen for each and every order. Because of this, you can be sure you’re getting exactly the cake you want that is as unique as any other cake that’s come before. Her most popular option is their chocolate cake, but it’s not just any chocolate cake. There’s a layer of raspberry filling, airy chocolate mousse, and salted caramel buttercream to finish. If that’s not decadent enough for you, Lynnette’s personal favourite is her toasted coconut cake filled with passion fruit curd and topped with a Madagascar vanilla buttercream. It’s like a trip to the tropics without having to book a flight and pack a suitcase. Regardless of your taste for sweets, there are dozens of cake, filling and frosting options to choose from so you can customize your cake to your heart’s content. 403-200-0649, swirlcakes.ca Mallory is a Calgary freelance writer and grad student now living, learning and eating in Montreal. Check out her blog becauseilikechocolate.com
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BRUNCH WITH US
Craft Beer Market
Five Things You Didn’t Know About Popular Alberta Restaurants by JODY ROBBINS
There are some bars or restaurants that you’ve grown so accustomed to seeing, you almost take them for granted. But those places that have become popular destinations for dinners, dates, and family food all have backstories that are a testament to their sustained acclaim over the years. Here’s the scoop on five well-known food and drink spots across Alberta we’ve all come to know and love!
Craft Beer Market: The Pioneer Canada’s first large format beerfocused restaurant also boasts the country’s biggest selection of draft beers. Back in 2011 when they first opened in Calgary, craft beer wasn’t on the tip of everyone’s tongue. Fast-forward six years, and you can sip on more than 100 beers on tap at each of Craft’s locations. Not a fan of ale? Sample a “craft-tail,” a boozy beer-cocktail. Another surprise? Craft is family friendly until 9 p.m.! Number of locations: Four, with two under construction. Expect South Centre to open this summer, and Toronto in the fall. Best loved dish: Fast Food Sushi.
Craft’s take on sushi is a deconstructed cheeseburger: patty, fries and all, wrapped in bacon and served with wasabi mayo. Fun fact: Craft Beer Market is the largest restaurant in Canada to be LEED certified. Occupying the same footprint where Mother Tuckers stood for thirtyyears, much of the wood inside this popular gastro-pub was reclaimed from the former restaurant.
King’s Restaurant: Comfort Food Curator A staple on the Calgary food scene for the past 40 years, this unassuming restaurant is a testament to build it and they will come. Situated on the edge of an industrial park on Calgary’s Barlow Trail, their soul satisfying food — in particular, warm bowls of wonton soup — have achieved cult status from a diverse crowd. Touted as the home of the wor wonton, everything from the wonton wrappers right down to the seasoning and sauces is made from scratch. Speaking of sauces, their Heavenly Hot Sauce just might be considered Alberta’s secondary liquid gold. A melange of garlic, several types of pepper and chili oil, it’s more flavourful than it is hot, and elevates meals from good to great. Pick a jar up on your way out and drizzle some overtop a burger or even vanilla ice cream.
Chachi’s: The Gourmet Sandwich Maker Think of the best restaurant sandwich you’ve ever scarfed back, and then imagine paying a fraction of the price and getting it to go. That’s the beauty of Chachi’s. Bringing better sandwiches to
Number of locations: Five across Alberta Best loved dish: Wonton soup, naturally! Fun fact: King’s has hand-wrapped more than 50 million wontons.
the food court, this Alberta joint pays homage to great cuts of meat, local bakers and cheesemongers.
Gluten-friendly options are available, and if you’re really not into carbing try one of their crisp green salads.
Every eight weeks, you’ll find a new feature sandwich ranging from the holiday season’s Cran and Brie, to Korean pork with gochujang sauce.
Number of locations: 17 and counting. Best loved dish: The Cali. A hearty construction of chicken breast, smoked turkey, double smoked bacon, cheddar, homemade guacamole, tomato, romaine lettuce and spicy mayo sandwiched in a rustic ciabatta roll. Fun fact: Chachi’s sells so many pickles as sides, they just might be the largest independent pickle retailer in Canada!
closely guarded secret. Not all diners realize Edo meals can be customized. You can swap in brown rice for white, add extra broccoli or double up on the veg and forgo rice all together.
Edo Japan: Quick and Healthy Asian Serving more than nine million customers a year, a diverse product mix has kept this Calgary-based company in the game for almost 40 years. Besides their popular teriyaki meals, sushi, bento
boxes, and rice and noodle bowls keep customers coming back for quick and healthy Asian eats. Fresh food is made to order, and is cooked on a traditional Japanese teppan grill. All sauces are made in-house, but don’t ask for their teriyaki recipe. It’s a
Number of locations: More than 115 in Alberta, Saskatchewan, British Columbia and Ontario. Best loved dish: Edo’s signature dishes of teriyaki chicken and sukiyaki beef remain the most popular. Fun fact: Edo was founded in Calgary in 1979 by a Japanese Buddhist Minister.
Moxies: The Trendy Kid Moxies began operations in Calgary in 1986, and it remains headquartered here today. Designed with global inspiration, the menu features a wide variety of cultures as evidenced by Korean Fried Cauliflower, Tuna Poke in a Jar and Lois Lake Lemon Herb Salmon.
Here, it’s not just about the food. Moxies sports an admirable cocktail program (despite their White Peach Bellini being a crowd favourite). Not many restaurants have their own beer, but you’ll find two exclusive lagers brewed by Calgary’s Big Rock Brewery on tap at Moxies. Number of locations: A whopping 65, with one in Dallas, Texas. 36
Best loved dish: For appies, folks love to share the calamari. When it comes to mains, the Chicken Madeira Rigatoni is the most requested. Fun fact: The white chocolate brownie is their most shared item on social media. Jody Robbins is a freelance lifestyle writer, whose first book: 25 Places in Canada Every Family Should Visit will hit the bookstores this month. Follow her adventures on her blog: Travels with Baggage.
Have You Entered Your Wines, Beers And Spirits Yet? For complete list of judges and competition details, go to culinairemagazine.ca Registration Deadline June 30 | Judging Takes Place July 17â€“19 For more information, contact competition director Tom Firth: firstname.lastname@example.org
Five Beers That Changed The World by DAVID NUTTALL
Of the hundreds of beer varieties, some are new, but most have been around for centuries. However, there are a few beers, which (if not the first beer) spawned hundreds, if not thousands of imitators.
Here are five beers that either pioneered their style or the standard to which all other beers in their category are measured.
Paulaner Salvator Doppelbock
First brewed in Munich, Germany, by the friars of St. Francis of Paula more than 400 years ago, this was such a staple it became known as “liquid bread.” At a relatively high 7.9% ABV, consumers named it doppel (double) bock. The Paulaner Brewery was established in 1634 with Salvator as its flagship beer. Made with two malts and three hops, this highly carbonated, orange-brown beer has a toasty, spicy flavour, with a slight fruity sweetness. This lager has multiple interpretations worldwide, leading to the brewery’s trademarking of the name Salvator. In homage, many breweries put an “-ator” as a suffix in their doppelbock’s names. Unavailable in Alberta for a couple of decades, it has now returned, perhaps to our beer salvation. Paulaner Salvator Doppelbock CSPC +788685, $5 per 500 mL can
From a wheat ale recipe developed by monks in the tiny Belgian town of Hoegaarden around 1445, the recipe altered over time when Belgium was part of the Netherlands, whose exploration companies were returning from far-flung lands with exotic fruits and spices. Adding coriander and dried Curaçao orange peel, the style became popular with local breweries. This witbier became synonymous with the town for more than 400 years, but due to world wars 38
Made with chocolate, amber and pale ale malts, and two imported hops, the flavours are full of espresso and fruit with a slightly smoky finish. Brewed until 1982, it had become interpreted by many craft brewers in its absence. Even more popular in today’s brewing, all extra strong stouts owe a bow of thanks to John Courage and a Russian noblewoman’s love for his beer. Courage Imperial Russian Stout CSPC +753974, $5 bottle.
Pilsner Urquell and economic conditions, all the breweries in Hoegaarden closed by 1957. Thankfully, a local milkman, Pierre Celis, reopened a new brewery in 1965 and recreated the old recipe. Celis eventually sold his brewery and opened one in Texas, introducing witbier to the U.S. His old brewery in Hoegaarden still brews beer, and today all the breweries in the world making this style have ancient Belgian monks and Pierre Celis to thank. Hoegaarden, CSPC +554089 $20 per 6 pack
Anchor Liberty Ale
There’s a debate over what was the first American India Pale Ale (IPA), but this beer from San Francisco can certainly lay rights to the title. Debuting in 1975, it was the first beer to use Cascade hops, and though not marketed as an IPA, it certainly influenced the thousands of craft IPAs that followed.
this was one of the beers many breweries set to recreate. While possibly the highest IBU (International Bittering Units) beer made in the U.S. at the time of its introduction, it’s been lapped by countless other beers whose brewers have cranked the volume to 11 (and beyond) in their search for uniqueness in what is now an ocean of American IPAs.
Much like Paul Revere’s ride 200 years earlier, which inspired the name for the beer, the revolution began here. However, much like Paul Revere’s ride 200 years earlier, which inspired the name for the beer, the revolution began here. Anchor Liberty Ale, CSPC +728442 $21 per 6 pack
An ale made with only four traditional ingredients, it was also America’s first single hop and dry hopped ale. Although inspired by the longestablished British IPA, its use of a northwest hop gave it a distinct and unique aroma and flavour unlike any other beer.
Courage Imperial Russian Stout
Despite being, by definition, “simply” a pale ale, when the craft beer movement hit its stride in the 1980s,
Courage tweaked his stout recipe to 10% alcohol and 60 IBUs, and in 1795, the Imperial Russian Stout was born.
The name translates as “the original of Pilsen.” In an era of dark, cloudy beers, this clear lager was created by brewmaster Josef Groll in the Bohemian town of Plzen (now the Czech Republic) in 1842. Brewed to surpass the low quality local beers, Groll employed a new lagering technique using yeast smuggled out of Bavaria, local Saaz hops, imported Moravian barley, and low-mineral Plzen water. The result was the first golden-coloured, clear beer, which looked impressive in the new favourite glassware: Bohemian crystal. As Pilsner Urquell’s popularity grew, it was soon copied — first by the Germans, and later in the U.S. by multiple breweries before the end of the century. Today, the pilsner style is the most imitated beer variety in the world. Pilsner Urquell, CSPC +388900 $17 per 6 pack
John Courage opened his English brewery in 1787 and his stouts became a favourite of Russian Empress Catherine the Great. However, the long and often frigid voyages across the Baltic sea to St. Petersburg required a beer with higher alcohol and additional hopping.
Making The Case:
Super, Natural British Columbia by TOM FIRTH
Spring couldn’t come soon enough this year. It felt like this was one of the coolest, snowiest winters in years, but despite the joys of having a home office, there were too many wintery days where being cooped up inside was the norm. Now that spring is here, being outside is the order of the day, and I start thinking about visiting (again) our closest wine producing region: the Okanagan Valley. Every year, the wines get better and better, and the gap is gradually narrowing price-wise; quite a few wines are competitive in the plus $15 category, while north of $20-25 the wines of the Okanagan compete with the finest regions around the world. My go-to bottles from the Okanagan to serve at home include pinot noir, merlot (so good), cabernet franc, and
syrah. When it comes to whites, who doesn’t love good riesling, top-shelf chardonnay, or the thirst quenching quality of a tasty pinot gris? If you haven’t been yet, I’d highly recommend visiting the region, not just for the wine, but the wonderful scenery, outdoor activities available year-round, and the incredible dining options. I’m always thrilled to talk about the Okanagan, and happy to share a good bottle recommendation or two (or twelve!).
Time 2013 Meritage Who doesn’t love a good meritage? Built around merlot and cabernet sauvignon with cabernet franc, these are three varieties the Okanagan does very well. Ripe fruits with plenty of spice notes, mocha, and liquorice root aromas, the palate delivers a consistent flavour with tight, grippy tannins and a lovely earthy finish. Perfect for spareribs or Greek style kebobs. CSPC +789669 $32
Le Vieux Pin 2014 “Cuvée Violette” Syrah One of my favourite Okanagan syrahs. Beautiful floral tones on the nose with developed spices of pepper and clove along with blackberry and mulberry fruits. Balanced, spicy, and blessed with great mouthfeel as well. Drinking perfectly right now, but will hang on in the cellar for 5-10 years. Drink with red meats, hearty, meaty pasta dishes or stews. CSPC +768439 About $37
Calliope 2013 Figure 8 Cabernet Merlot
Tom Firth is the contributing Drinks editor for Culinaire magazine, and the competition director for the Alberta Beverage Awards. He firmly believes that great riesling is proof the universe is unfolding as it should. 40
No rough edges on this nose, allowing one to simply enjoy ripe fruits, a little earthiness, and wood-box/spiciness. Flavours are well integrated, and while I could go on and on, it’s a well-made, enjoyable wine suitable for crowds large and small. Highly enjoyable. CSPC +175976 $21
Burrowing Owl 2014 Athene
Red Rooster 2014 Cabernet Merlot
Bench 1775 2014 Malbec
Looking for a full-bodied blend? Burrowing Owl’s Athene is made from syrah and cabernet sauvignon. More than the sum of its parts, it still shows character of both its component grapes. Smoked meat and plum fruits with black cherry, bell pepper, and graphite on the nose, it’s full flavoured on the palate with good fruits and a little herbaciousness on the back end. Pair up with a thick steak, or fire up the smoker and have at it. CSPC +1099175 $46
Just have to get this out there — I’m loving the new label featuring that (red) rooster, who looks like he means business. Softer berry fruits with well-seasoned spice aromas promise an accessible experience, which is confirmed on the palate. Clean, generous fruit, moderate tannins, and a bit of floral character on the mid palate would go oh-so-well with pulled pork or a nice sirloin steak. CSPC +730805 $22
The Okanagan Valley doesn’t really spring to mind when you think about varietally labelled malbec, but here we are. Loads and loads of flowery characters with spice and just a touch of that dried herb garrigue note malbec can have. Blueberry, plum, and raspberry jam fruits dominate the palate, and it has to be said, this is pretty good malbec. CSPC +896670 $27 or so
Mission Hill 2015 Five Vineyards Pinot Grigio
Quail’s Gate 2015 Chasselas Pinot Blanc Pinot Gris
Laughing Stock 2015 Pinot Gris
There’s nothing quite like pinot grigio on a cloud-free day. Mission Hill’s Five Vineyards line is very reasonably priced and the grigio delivers lifted tropical fruits with crisp apple and mineral tones on nose and palate. Pinot gris (grigio) is well suited to a variety of cuisines, but try pairing with roasted chicken, pork loin, or even grilled veggies. CSPC +563981 $18-19
A skillful blend using some wellknown grapes in the Okanagan, and one that’s quite rare – chasselas. Look for zingy and fresh tropical fruits like mango, melon, and peaches along with a nice floral component. Perfectly refreshing on the palate, you’ll want to put your feet up while sipping it on the deck. Serve with lighter meats or poultry. CSPC +585737 $20
Seriously good pinot gris resides in this bottle. Look for slate, apple and lemon aromas with a little bit of vanilla and popcorn, and a layered, balanced and quite buttery palate. Very few pinot gris are made like this, but definitely one to try. Match with anything you would normally serve with chardonnay, maybe lobster tails, turkey breast, or some softer cheese. CSPC +750890 $29
Township 7 2015 7 Blanc
Tinhorn Creek 2014 Cabernet Franc
CedarCreek 2013 Platinum Merlot
Intense tropical fruits of pear, lychee (all that gewürztraminer) and apples with spice, blossom and mineral on the nose move into an off-dry, but well balanced clean and tropical fruit treat. Very quaffable, no food required, but might be a nice match with grilled seafood or lighter pork dishes. CSPC +114553 $19-20
One of my favourite cabernet francs year after year with cherry fruits, peppery spices, and a mild touch of leather and vanilla. Slightly tart fruits with grippy tannins and excellent acids. I just know I want to pair this with something flavourful like duck confit, meaty chili, or a well-seasoned prime rib. CSPC +530717 $25-26
I’ve long been a fan of the quality of good merlot from the Okanagan and I’m always keen to try the best of them. CedarCreek’s Platinum is definitely one of the finest. Lush fruits with plenty of spice and floral backbone, but don’t forget nearly incredible balance on the palate. So. Damn. Good. CSPC +69070 $45 41
they were packaged out. As fate would have it, it was at the time Eau Claire Distillery started. “I roamed the streets with an empty bottle, then a full bottle, then after about four weeks I was legally allowed to sell it,” he says. “As the first new distillery, we were the guinea pig and helped the AGLC with all the procedural forms and crossing of t’s and dotting of i’s.” An advocate for Alberta and Alberta products for 27 years, Gunson is very happy to see the tide of awareness, and proliferation of craft breweries and distilleries that have opened in Alberta in the last few years.
Open That Bottle
story by LINDA GARSON photography by INGRID KUENZEL
“Working with Big Rock I was exposed to the brave new world of craft and artisanal, though we didn’t call it that then as those words weren’t invented yet,” says Martin Gunson, Eau Claire Distillery’s Vice President of Sales. Gunson was born in Stettler, and spent his formative years in Alberta, with a spell in Toronto, before moving to Edmonton in his teens. After school, he studied economics and political science at university, and then took a year off to travel around Europe, where he gained an appreciation for beer and wine, and a fondness for flavour. When he returned in 1989 Big Rock were just starting up, and Gunson took the opportunity to work there with David Farran (founder of Eau Claire Distillery), and Larry Kerwin, who has been in brewing and distillation for 3040 years. “It was a learning curve, and very entrepreneurial,” he says. “Ed McNally, who founded Big Rock, was a pioneer in this industry, and was great to work for –with his way of less administration 42
(and) just pull up your boot straps and go and do it.” 1995 started an eventful few years; after putting Big Rock on the map in Edmonton, Gunson moved to Toronto to open up the market there, then a couple of years later moved to Vancouver, working in Seattle and Oregon too. After three years, he returned to Calgary, a spell with Sleeman Brewery, and then with a small craft brewery in Creemore, Ontario. “That’s a neat story,” Gunson laughs. "The owner would interview you to see if you were worthy of his beer, and there was a waiting list for Creemore Springs at the time.” The company bought Granville Island brewery, and Gunson managed a team across the prairies, but after seven years
So what is Gunson’s special bottle? “As I worked for Big Rock, I thought I’d only be completing the circle if I chose the Big Rock Barrel Aged Edition,” he explains. “I spent 13 years at Big Rock, and I hope to spend at least the next 10 years working for Eau Claire,” Gunson adds. “I started my career in beer and I’m presently in distillation, and the tie is, of course, bourbon barrels. They made this beer in bourbon barrels and we’re aging our single malt in bourbon barrels. To me it just comes full circle, the entrepreneurial spirit of Ed (McNally) and now people like David and Larry at the distillery with that maverick spirit.” And when will Gunson open the bottle? Gunson’s son is traveling in Europe at the moment, and expected back in a few weeks. “I’m a fan of sharing a beer, so this would probably be shared with my son when he gets back,” he says. “So I will wait or – no pun intended – when the spirit takes me, or maybe if the Flames win the Stanley Cup, I’ll open it then,” he laughs. “I’m not too sentimental about when I open it, but when I do, it’s going to be poured into the right glass and enjoyed.”
Kelowna’s best casual Farm to Table Restaurant Krafty is a contemporary restaurant in the heart of downtown Kelowna offering responsible and sustainable cuisine. Top Chef Canada's Chris Shaften combines seasonal produce with international flavors, to create a unique, Canadian dining experience. Creative okanagan dining.
Happy Hour 3-5pm 7 days a week Monday – Friday Lunch 12:00pm – 3:00pm Monday – Sunday Dinner 5:00pm – late Saturday – Sunday – Hip Hop Brunch – 10:30am – 3:00pm
reservations: kraftykitchen.ca 250.868.7228 281 Lawrence | Kelowna, BC
For a unique Okanagan experience, visit freerangetours.com
Culnaire is Alberta's freshest food and beverage magazine - now celebrating Celebrating 5 years! Dining out, dining in, wine, beer ,spirits...
Published on May 1, 2017
Culnaire is Alberta's freshest food and beverage magazine - now celebrating Celebrating 5 years! Dining out, dining in, wine, beer ,spirits...