C A L G A R Y / F O O D & D R I N K / R E C I P E S : : V O L U M E 2 N O . 7 : : D ecem b er 2 0 1 3
Seasonal Treats And Everything Sweet
Popping the Cork on Bubbles
Gift Guides for Foodies, Wine Lovers, Beer Lovers & Spirits Lovers
51 Volume 2/issue #7 december 2013
Features 32 5 Calgarians’ Cookies
Five top Calgary culinary personalities share their favourite cookie recipes. by Dan Clapson
Salutes And Shout Outs by Linda Garson
36 Sweet-Meets-Savoury At Yellow Door Bistro
51 Christmas Gift Guides:
Whimsical décor exudes a playful character, extending right through the elevated menu, all the way to dessert. by Dan Clapson
22 Christmas Take-Away by Diana Ng
7 Event Previews by David Nuttall
8 Ask Culinaire by Tom Firth
26 Après Ski by Matt Browman
10 Cookbook Reviews by Karen Miller
‘Tis The Season… For Warming Wine by Tom Firth
12 Menu Gems 14 Culinaire Competition and 2013 Winning Stories 15
Fruitcake: A Tradition by Jocelyn Burgener
Papa Bernard is Back by Andrea Fulmek
18 Chefs’ Tips – and Tricks! by Fred Malley CCC
Step-By-Step Cheesecake by Natalie Findlay
For the Food Obsessed, for Beer Lovers and for Whisky Lovers by Carmen Cheng, David Nuttall and Andrew Ferguson
44 Bubbles – Not Just for New Year’s Eve Anymore by Steve Goldsworthy 46
Tiny Red Bubbles by BJ Oudman
48 Be True To Your Beer School by David Nuttall 58
The Last Minute Bottle by Tom Firth
Soup Kitchen by Dan Clapson
Flipping Out Over the Holidays by Tarquin Melnyk
30 Epiphanie Chocolate by Andrea Fulmek
Save Room For Dessert by Tom Firth
8 Ways to Spice Up Shortbread by Laura Lushington
66 Open That Bottle by Linda Garson
From Far and Wide by Tonya Lailey culinairemagazine.ca • 3
Letter From The Editor us know your thoughts. While you’re there, you can enter to win some fabulous prizes, from a NOtaBLE kitchen experience followed by dinner, to restaurant gift certificates, to a bottle of Taittinger Nocturne Champagne that glitters like a disco ball!
The year is drawing to a close, but for Culinaire it’s a very exciting time, as this month sees the start of our new look. We’ve been listening to your feedback and gradually upgrading, improving and elevating our appearance, culminating in December’s issue with our new masthead and typefaces throughout. We’re also launching our new redesigned website this month, with more content, recipes, reviews and web-only stories. Do visit culinairemagazine.ca and let
It’s the season for celebrating, so in this issue, as well as indulging our sweet teeth, we have lots of sparkling suggestions and gift ideas for the foodies, wine, beer and whisky drinkers in your life. I wish you a very happy and safe holiday time, and a special thanks for your support in 2013, whether as a reader, a contributor or an advertiser; we are ever grateful and look forward to seeing you next year. Linda Garson Editor-in-Chief firstname.lastname@example.org
We love to hear from you, and you can imagine our wide smiles at seeing this post on our Culinaire Facebook page: “I recently moved to Calgary and was immediately introduced to this magazine. I was so surprised at Calgary’s food scene…It made the transition from Toronto to Calgary that much easier! So thank you and I am always excited when I get my monthly issue at the Farmers Market!! Great Magazine!!” Kristina C. And now it’s our turn to give thanks: To Silk Road Spice Merchant in Inglewood, for their generous and kind assistance with November’s ‘spicy’ front cover and centre spread. And to The Fairmont Palliser for the use of The Rimrock Restaurant, and Laura Lushington for baking the cookies for this month’s cover, both expertly photographed by Ingrid Kuenzel.
CALGARY / FOOD & DRINK / RECIPES Editor-in-Chief/Publisher: Linda Garson email@example.com Contributing Drinks Editor: Tom Firth firstname.lastname@example.org Contributing Food Editor: Dan Clapson email@example.com Commercial Director Keiron Gallagher & Advertising: 403-975-7177 firstname.lastname@example.org Digital Media: Laura Lushington email@example.com Design: Emily Vance Contributors: Matt Browman Jocelyn Burgener Carmen Cheng Andrew Ferguson Natalie Findlay Andrea Fulmek Steve Goldsworthy Ingrid Kuenzel Tonya Lailey Laura Lushington Fred Malley CCC Tarquin Melnyk Karen Miller Diana Ng David Nuttall BJ Oudman
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 firstname.lastname@example.org www.culinairemagazine.ca www.facebook.com/CulinaireMagazine Twitter: @culinairemag For subscriptions, competitions and to read Culinaire online: culinairemagazine.ca
Our Contributors < Andrew Ferguson
Andrew Ferguson has been the In-house Single Malt Scotch expert and co-manager at Kensington Wine Market since 2003. In 2011, he was honoured to be the first Canadian retail expert inducted into the Keepers of the Quaich. He writes The Malt Messenger, subscribed to by nearly 5,000 people, conducts tastings, teaches classes and operates a whisky tourism business, organizing and guiding premium whisky tours in Scotland (fergusonswhiskytours.com). He is also the President of The Companions of the Quaich, Calgary Chapter, now in its 7th year.
< Tonya Lailey
Tonya spent countless hours of her youth raising vines in the chill of Niagara spring and the close heat of its sweltering summers. She left the farm to study political science, completing her Masters at Queen’s University in 1998. In 2000, she earned her Sommelier certification and helped produce the first vintage of Lailey Vineyard wines. She’s currently raising kids (at least as unruly as young vines), writing, and selling her family’s wine in Alberta and BC.
< Karen Miller
Karen is a lawyer by trade, and a firm believer in keeping it simple. She starts everything with the best ingredients possible, and claims to have been on the “know where your food comes from” bandwagon sooner than most. Always willing to go the extra mile to find a great product, and always willing to impart knowledge to absolutely anybody who asks, Karen is practical but creative, having taught many styles of cooking classes. She was also part of the Calgary Dishing girls (producing two cookbooks).
Salutes … “I’m excited to showcase my classical training and contemporary techniques and marry them with my Vietnamese heritage,” says Hotel Arts Group Executive Chef Ly. “With the new look comes a new generation of mixologists and a new cocktail menu that we can be extremely proud of, adds Mah.
Courtesy of Alan Chong Photography
Congratulations Chef Duncan Ly! - who took gold for the Yellow Door Bistro at the Calgary Gold Medal Plates competition with his Vietnamese-style braised pork neck, pig’s ear and BC side stripe prawn terrine, paired with Peller Estates Ice Cuvée Rose from the Niagara Peninsula. “The competition was tougher than ever with ten excellent chefs at the top of their games, the top five were extremely close,” says judge and food critic John Gilchrist. Chef Roy Oh of Anju Restaurant was awarded silver, and Chef Darren MacLean of Downtownfood won bronze. Chef Ly will now represent Calgary at the Canadian Culinary Championships in Kelowna next February. The proceeds from the competition support the Canadian Olympic Foundation to help the nation’s highperformance athletes compete on the world stage.
There’s no stopping him! Hotel Arts’ signature lounge, Raw Bar by Duncan Ly, has undergone a makeover in both décor and cuisine, with a fresh new look, VietModern cuisine and cocktail program by general manager and mixologist extraordinaire, Christina Mah. 6 • December 2013
Having tried the new food and cocktail menus, we’re believers. Some favourites are Crispy Sweet Potato & Ginger Spring Rolls, Ginger Caramel Sablefish Clay Pot, and Lemongrass Coconut Braised Chicken Curry, all superdelicious!
Regency, was the winner of the ‘People’s Choice Award’ for her Smoked Tomato, Crab and Potato Cake, Ocean Wise Smoked Salmon and Crispy Kale Chips chowder.
‘Winemaker Of The Year’ - Moët & Chandon’s Chef de Cave, Benoît Gouez, has been presented with this prestigious Wine Enthusiast award, paying tribute to the Maison’s 270-year legacy of winemaking excellence. Benoît Gouez has been behind this celebrated champagne for more than eight years.
And congratulations to Chef Darren MacLean - champion of the inaugural Vancouver Aquarium Ocean Wise Chowder Chowdown. 11 top Calgary Ocean Wise chefs joined the sustainable seafood competition, presenting their best ocean-friendly seafood chowders, paired with craft beer. Chef MacLean, of Downtownfood, most impressed the judges with his spicy Cambodian-inspired ‘dtf Modern Chowder’. CRAFT Beer Market won ‘Best Chowder and Beer Pairing’ for their Ocean Wise Grey Cod, Chorizo and Chicharon Chowder paired with Big Rock Brewery’s casked Scottish Heavy Ale, and Chef Rebecca House of Thomsons Restaurant at Hyatt
Pint program raises funds for Kids Cancer Original Joe’s (OJ’s) has raised $7,158 for the Kids Cancer Care Foundation of Alberta from their community pint program. 15 Alberta locations joined forces with Granville Island Brewing and each donated 25 cents for every pint sold at OJ’s locations in southern Alberta. That’s 14,316 pints - way to go OJ’s!
and Shout Outs … Canada’s New Superoil A new and healthy oil! The Camelina sativa plant from northern Europe, aka Wild Flax, produces an oilseed that can be traced to the Bronze Age. Canada’s camelina oil producers, Three Farmers of Saskatchewan, have received acclaim from CBC’s Dragon’s Den as well as Canada’s chef community. “Our quiet market strategy has been to gain acceptance among the foodies first, “says Natasha Vandenhurk, CEO of Three Farmers. A rich source of Omega-3 and vitamin E, Camelina Oil is cold-pressed, has a 475º F smoke point, and an 18-month shelf life, making it ideal as both a salad and cooking oil. We’ve trialed it and can vouch for its depth and rich nutty flavour; it certainly passed our tests for salad dressings and marinades, stir-fries and sautéing. Camelina oil is available in three flavours; Traditional, Roasted Onion & Basil and Roasted Garlic & Chili, and in two sizes: 250 mL and 500 mL - and
for a limited time, in 100ml three packs. See threefarmers.ca
Welcome Peasant Cheese! Now open in Kensington, Crystal McKenzie’s new venture, Peasant Cheese, offers a full range of cheeses (including a baker’s dozen of blues!), charcuterie, olives, nuts, cheese boards and platters as well as other tempting foodie gifts. Perfect timing!
Bringing the South to the North When Chef Myles Learning, Manager Ryan Fraser and other Bookers BBQ & Crab Shack foodie folk head to Nashville for research, we know we’re in for something special on their return. And we’re right! They’ve mastered the latest authentic Southern specialties, and now generous portions of ribsticking Pulled Pork Poutine, Big Ass Slowbaked Overflowing Potato, Crab and Shrimp Boil, and Smokehouse Brisket Burnt Ends are yours for the asking. Honest food at honest prices, with live music on Fridays and Saturdays.
A Special Bru Big Rock’s new bubbly experiment, ‘Cuvée Bru’ Druivenbier (Flemish for ‘grape beer’) – a blend of grapes and grain in one impressive 750 mL black Champagne-style bottle, is now in our stores. Subtle melon and pear flavours come from Therapy Vineyards’, of the Okanagan’s Naramata Bench, pinot gris grapes blended with three Big Rock malts and Hallertau hops. With only 5,300 numbered bottles produced, you’ll have to be quick to get yours!
And last but not least… Another new lip-smacking product is released in time for the holidays. Made from pure criollo cocoa, an ancient bean that disappeared without a trace around 200 years ago and has recently been rediscovered in the jungles of South America, Criollo comes in two decadently delicious flavours, Chocolate Raspberry Truffle (try with a top up of sparkling wine) and Chocolate Sea Salted Caramel (try with a dram of whiskey) – let it snow!
by David Nuttall
Making a difference, one stop at a time.
CPR Holiday Train In Alberta
The Canadian Pacific Holiday Train kicks off its 15th year in Quebec on November 25 and will be visiting over 150 communities. The goal of the Holiday Train is to collect food and money for local food banks and to raise awareness in the fight against hunger.
December 7: Calgary 5:30 pm 11015 Anderson Station Way SW, south lot December 9: Blackie, Vulcan, Lethbridge December 10: Fort Macleod, Pincher Creek, Coleman
Everyone who attends is encouraged to donate food and money, which stays in their community. In Canada, donations are collected for food banks affiliated with the Canadian Association of Food Banks.
Each stop features a boxcar stage, a line-up of great musical talent and a contribution to the local food bank. Entertainers include Melanie Doane, Crystal Shawanda, Jim Cuddy, Brothers Dube, Doc Walker, Matt Dusk, and more. Since its inception in 1999, they’ve raised more than $7.4 million and over 3 million pounds of food in the U.S. and Canada. www.cpr.ca/en/in-your-community/ holiday-train/
culinairemagazine.ca • 7
Ask Culinaire: Choosing Wine For Parties by Tom Firth
How do I pick the ideal wine to give as a host/hostess gift?
Answer: I often share the simple truth
that I am not a good cook. Having said that, I am more than happy to bring good wine to any gathering! I often find myself bringing wine to the table - literally - and dare I say I am pretty damn good at it.
When I’m deciding on what bottle to bring to a holiday get-together, I try to find out what is on the menu or what sort of wine the lucky folks that are having me as a guest enjoy drinking. Party etiquette doesn’t necessarily mean that the recipient has to open your wine that particular evening. So if you decide that you want to bring a special bottle to drink during a dinner party, the hosts are under no obligation to pull the cork while you are there unless that was predetermined or requested. They’ve gone to the trouble
to prepare the meal and may already have readied the perfect wine for you. In other words, just relax! For the average party, you’ll bring a wine, and most often it will end up on the kitchen counter with an assortment of other bottles, and because you brought it, you won’t get more than a glass. The trick is to find a nice bottle, suitable for the hosts, and one that won’t break the bank at the same time. When it comes to budget, you’ll probably want to find a wine around $12 or higher. For a dinner party, a good place to start is closer to $20. Too much less and you stray into the “it’s hard to find a nice bottle at that price that isn’t cheap” wine category. Once you start bringing bottles around $10 or less, you’ll start getting fewer invitations. Don’t be that person!
To check out some of our top recommendations for wines to share and enjoy this holiday from the 2013 Alberta Beverage Awards, go to p 58. 8 • December 2013
Countries to look to for great wines at reasonable prices are France, Spain, Italy and Portugal. In the new world, Argentina, Chile, and Australia are good bets for finding wine at good prices. Grapes such as pinot noir and cabernet sauvignon are good bets for red wine, while chardonnay, and pinot grigio are favourite go-to bottles on the white side of things. One last word, don’t be afraid to be a little adventurous, this is not the time for the same old-same old or just buying a pretty label (those rarely end up being the good ones anyway), try a different producer, region, or country. When in doubt, ask for help at your local wine shop too! They usually know a thing or two.
Tom Firth is the contributing drinks editor for Culinaire Magazine and the competition director for the Alberta Beverage Awards, follow him on twitter @cowtownwine
IN THE HEART OF DOWNTOWN CALGARY We are excited to introduce Calgary’s newest hospitality destination! KORQ Winehouse & Kitchen offers sustainable, local, seasonal food. We take pride in knowing where our food comes from and we know that food tastes best, when it’s in season. It is also no secret that whether it’s a special occasion, dinner with friends or you’re just in for a snack, food tastes better when shared. With this in mind, and the support of our local farmers, ranchers and other artisanal suppliers, we have created a menu of simple, welcoming dishes that will bring a smile to your face and have you wanting to come back for more.
3 2 O F YO U R FAVO U R I T E W I N E S R OTAT I N G O N TA P S !
801 – 6th Street SW, Calgary, Alberta T2P 3V8 587.352.KORQ www.KORQwinehouse.ca
Book Reviews Canada’s Favourite Recipes Rose Murray and Elizabeth Baird Whitecap Books 2012 $40
Recently named winner of best general cookbook at the 2013 Taste Canada Food Writing Awards, the cover of this book does not do it justice. Authored by two of Canada’s culinary legends who have experienced all of Canada’s culinary landscape, the book is filled with recipes Canadians want to make. The recipes are by no means Canadian in origin, but rather ones that have been made into memories or traditions. This is less a cookbook than it is a treasure trove of moments all of us have experienced at one time or another.
by Karen Miller
The stories and the path to becoming a “favourite” are very personal, but a true insight to the diversity this country offers. You can visualize the stained handwritten recipe cards taken out time and time again from all the family, chefs, food writers, home economists, broadcasters and teachers featured. The photographs are stunning iconic Canadian landscapes from east to west coast, and of course the prepared recipes themselves. I have made the traditional Quebec Tortiere recipe from one of my favourite food writers, Julian Armstrong, many
Ok I confess. I have been a Jamie Oliver fan for a long time! Even before he was famous here, thanks to a heads up from someone living in the UK very early in his career. He makes cooking fun! Oliver is encouraging, full of ideas, not fussy and has never-ending enthusiasm and a big grin on his face at all times. His goal is to nourish and to make sure you nourish too. So if you can get past the idea of someone really having so much energy, then he will not disappoint.
Save with Jamie
Jamie Oliver Harper Collins 2013 $37.99
10 • December 2013
Yes, he has a whole testing team figuring out costs, nutrition and such, but you still believe he is behind it all. This book, and the related TV show, is about saving money while still having the best food
times, as well as the quintessential Canada Day dessert “Strawberry Shortcake”. I am most tempted by the “Excellent Chicken Pot Pie”. So pick your favourite in this book and continue or create memories and traditions of your own.
on your table. But it is really about encouraging and teaching people to start cooking from scratch. I cannot say if the book will live up to the “Save with Jamie “ moniker but you will want to cook more. Jamie, as we are on a first name basis, shows us how to waste less and many recipes incorporate leftovers and simple replacements for the ubiquitous “take away” meal. So go have fun in the kitchen and cook with Jamie!
Karen Miller is a lawyer by trade, giving her a knack for picking apart a cookbook. She has taught many styles of cooking classes and was part of the Calgary Dishing girls.
culinairemagazine.ca â€˘ 11
Menu Gems We asked our contributors to pick their ‘favourite dish of the year’ from any Calgary restaurant – it’s incredibly hard to choose just one dish when we have so many talented chefs and such amazing choices of creative and quality cuisine in our city Menu Gems and here are their memorable dishes of 2013. We asked our contributors to pick their ‘favourite dish of the year’ from any Calgary restaurant – it’s incredibly hard to choose just one dish when we have so many talented chefs and such amazing choices of creative and quality cuisine in our city - and here are their memorable dishes of 2013.
Prawn Rolls, Model Milk
Hanger Steak Frites, Brasserie Kensington
I’ve been lucky enough toHanger taste someSteak incredible dishes this Frites, Brasserie Kensington year, but the dish that I can never get enough of is Model With all the interpretive, multi-cultural influences Withbuttery all the interpretive, influences Milk’s prawn rolls. These little sandwiches stuffed multi-cultural incorporated single dishes in creative restaurants into single creative into restaurants with fresh prawn salad areincorporated simple and not fussed over, butdishes in throughout the city (and much of it to great effect), I still throughout the city (and much of it to great effect), the combination of flavours and textures, and the cold salad find that the most soul-nourishing meals come from a I still find that the most soul-nourishing meals come against the warm bread all work together to make it absolutely single tradition, prepared simply and executed perfectly. from a single tradition, prepared simply and executed addictive for me. perfectly. At Brasserie, the hanger steak frites was At Brasserie, the hanger steak frites was food perfection. Diana Ng food perfection. Perfectly savoury and melting, Perfectly savoury andsliced melting, sliced properly for maximum properly for maximum flavour and tenderness, the flavour and tenderness, thejus jus succulent and the frites thin succulent and the frites thin butbut not precious. A lot of meals this year, but can’t not precious. A lot of great great meals this year, but can’t shake shake thisthis one.one. This year, I ate things I thought I never thought I would. When Matthew Browman Dan Clapson suggested we get Avec’s tartare at one of our lunch meetings, I hesitated. But, I’m so glad I dived in and tried it. From the texture to the flavour, Avec’s beef tartare is sublime. Laura Lushington My most memorable meal this year was the Chef’s Tasting at Teatro. With John Michael Macneil’s geniusness, each bite is amazingly crafted, but the Faux Beef Cheeks stand out as my favourite dish. Beef Tenderloin is cut to resemble beef cheeks and served with a foie gras foam, chanterelle mushrooms, and buttery potato puree. It is pure heaven! Carmen Cheng
Beef Tartare, Avec Bistro
Faux Beef Cheeks, Teatro
Teriyaki Salmon Belly, Notables
A haunt that I always come back to is Notables and exclusively for the Teriyaki Salmon Belly appetizer that they have served from day one. You may order this dish as an appetizer or as a main course. The sticky sweet sauce combined with the pickled vegetables is pure heaven and the salmon belly is a juicy, tender meat that melts in your mouth. I can never get enough. Erika Tocco
Chicken and Waffles, Anju
Though this is an all too trendy dish these days that will likely be KO-ed by early 2014, I’m going with Chef Roy Oh’s take on chicken and waffles as my favourite dish of the year. A fluffy waffle, topped with tender chicken, coated in his signature gochujang Korean-style hot sauce, served with a fried egg and a drizzle of maple syrup. Sweet, salty, spicy: three flavour profiles that make me feel content at the dinner table. Now, hurry up and open your doors already, Anju 2.0! Dan Clapson
Newf’s Poutine, Briggs Kitchen and Bar
I am always a sucker for frites, and Xavier and company have taken poutine to the sublime by adding lobster to the fresh cut fries and cheese curds. A creamy rich French style sauce with onion and peppercorns ties it all together. You will be scraping the bottom of the pan. Fred Malley
Braised Short Rib Pappardelle, Cucina Market Bistro
After falling in love with Cucina’s Saltimbocca Pasta Shells a few months back, I couldn’t resist trying this reinvented pasta dish. The braised short rib is cooked to perfection and the veal jus and padano beautifully complement the flavour of the melt-in-your-mouth braised beef. The perfect meal for pasta and beef lovers alike. Andrea Fulmek
Wagyu Beef Board, downtownfood
The wagyu beef board at Downtownfood was the springboard for wagyu beef’s entry to Calgary’s restaurants. Four different cuts of impeccably raised beef served four different ways, plus heart tartare and roasted bone marrow may not have been the most groundbreaking dish, but was definitely the most influential in driving the delightfully marbled meat onto almost all of Calgary’s top menus. Gabriel Hall
Gnocchi With Duck Confit, Avec Bistro.
Simple, seasonal ingredients with little elements left to the side to be subtly mixed together. It’s not a huge dish, but every bite is absolute perfection. Which is a hallmark of Chef Darnell Jaap’s whole menu. Simple fare, that is simply better than most dishes I’ve tasted around town. The texture of the tender gnocchi with cauliflower, squash, goat cheese, pesto and sumptuous duck. Nice elements of crunchiness from the garnish and the creaminess of a parsnip purée. I need it weekly. Tarquin Melnyk
Newf’s Poutine, Briggs Kitchen and Bar
Shortly after Briggs Kitchen opened I had their Traditional Poutine. Heavenly smoky caramelized onion “gravy” served over perfectly cooked fries and served with fresh cheese curds. Could it get any better? After going back three times that week (research!) I had their Newf’s Poutine. Was I ready to give up that heavenly onion gravy? I still got the smoke from the fries but the dish was elevated by the unctuous lobster and the creaminess of the melting cheese making a sauce that caressed the fries. Happy happy happy. Karen Mlller
Win A Bottle Of The Brand New Taittinger Disco Ball Nocturne!
Thanks to all of you who have entered Culinaire competitions this year, we’ve so enjoyed reading your stories and are sharing some winning entries here: Traveling northwards from Edinburgh to Peterhead with the ashes in the boot of the car, dad and his siblings stopped at a pub for lunch. As pints were brought, my aunt burst into laughter. “Well, here’s a switch. Father’s outside on the curb waiting for us while we sit in the pub.”
Celebrate New Year’s Eve in style with Taittinger’s latest release champagne. A very special edition of Nocturne, this striking bottle is covered in hundreds of reflective tiles, and glitters like a disco ball. Taittinger suggest it is a champagne to be enjoyed at the end of an evening, “A champagne all dressed up and ready to party.” Turn your New Year’s Eve into one to remember – by simply telling us your ideal New Year’s Eve! Where are you? Who are you with? What are you eating and drinking?
Danny Cescon won a $75 Lougheed House Gift Certificate for telling us about the first time he prepared dinner for his girlfriend:
Alison Nelner won a signed bottle of Glenfarclas Highland Single Malt Whisky 15 years for her Scottish story: “I am proud to say that my ancestors are Scots! My parents emigrated from the “Auld Country” in the fifties, leaving behind an extensive family for a new home in Canada.
To enter, go to culinairemagazine.ca and click on “CONTESTS”! We can’t wait to hear from you! The winner will be announced Monday December 23rd 2013.
My Grandfather was no stranger to whisky or the pub. When my dad and his siblings were young, Grandpa would tell Grandma that he was taking the children out for “a wee walk and some fresh air.” Inevitably the walk would take them by the pub, where Grandpa would sit the children down on the curb outside and he would nip inside for a wee dram. Dad and the others would wait patiently until Grandpa was fortified. Forty years later, upon my grandfather’s death, my father returned to Scotland to join his brother and sister in sprinkling the ashes at sea along the North East Coast where they had grown up.
“In 1976 I graduated from university in BC and took my first position in Winnipeg not knowing a single person. At one point I was set up on a blind date, which went fairly well. Two weeks, later summing up the courage, I invited the lady to my apartment for dinner. She was a little concerned. Only the second date and already I’m inviting her to ‘my place’ for dinner. She was very impressed by my meal of pasta, roast chicken, ‘Italian’ stew and salad. Little did she know my parents had been out to visit with me earlier that week, and these had all been prepared by my mother. Yes, we did later marry!!” Sandy Mann won a $50 Sky 360 Gift Certificate for telling us her most unique breakfast while travelling: I was invited to visit a friend and her very wealthy parents in the States one weekend. It was 10 in the morning and the father offered me a martini for breakfast. I asked for a cup of tea instead and a piece of toast. The mother poured me a cup of tea in a beautiful bone china teacup. As I held the handle, the cup with the boiling tea fell into my lap. The mother than exclaimed, “I guess the crazy glue didn’t work so well.” I was very sorry that I had turned down the martini breakfast.
Fruitcake: A Tradition – Like it or Not by Jocelyn Burgener
The history of fruitcake spans two millennia. Rich in tradition, fruitcake is part of our Christmas festivities, with recipes handed down through generations. Love it or hate it, it’s here to stay. The familiar adage, “necessity is the mother of invention,” may well apply to the creation of the first fruitcake. Historic and academic notations referring to the origins of the fruitcake put the date as “in Roman times.” The Egyptians are credited with using their practice of “preserving fruits when they were out of season,” then baking a combination of pomegranates, pine nuts and raisins in a “barley mash.” This created an edible cake to carry when travelling. Though not quite the same as packing a lunch, it was used by the Crusaders and hunters on their travels. In the 16th century, two culinary milestones contributed to the development of the traditional fruitcake served today. Lonnette Harrel, a contributing writer to the Yahoo network, writes that oatmeal was replaced by some of the familiar ingredients used in modern cakes, such as eggs, butter and wheat flour. This coincided with the second milestone: the discovery that fruit could be preserved when soaked in large concentrations of sugar. Through the
sugar cane trade from the West Indies, cheap sugar became available to the kitchens of Europe.
fruitcake can be kept indefinitely if wrapped in cheesecloth and regularly soaked in alcohol.
According to CreatingHistory.com’s The History of Fruitcake, during the 18th century, following the nut harvest, nuts were added to a ceremonial fruitcake. The cake was saved until the beginning of the next year’s harvest in hopes of securing another successful harvest.
But there are those who don’t appreciate fruitcake. According to some, the notion of indefinitely adding liquor in the preservation of this traditional dessert is a waste of good liquor.
With the addition of spices reminiscent of the gifts brought by the Three Wise Men, the fruitcake became known as “Christmas Cake.” Over the centuries, fruitcake continued to be associated with Christmas. According to Delores Casella, author of A World of Baking,
With apologies to the popular Christmas carol, Santa Claus is Coming to Town (lyrics by Anuradha Javeri), Santa might be able to help, as he not only knows if you’ve been good or bad, if you’re sleeping or awake: “He knows if you like pudding And if you like to bake He knows if you add rum or rye Or just can’t stand fruitcake! Merry Christmas!
A former MLA, Jocelyn finds clarity in chaos and humour in everyday life.
Papa Bernard Is Back story by Andrea Fulmek
Loss, grief, devastation — Bernard Callebaut is no more of a stranger to these words than we are to his name, but he is also no stranger to determination and hard work. In August of 2010, many of us watched Alberta’s most well-known chocolatier, Bernard Callebaut, regretfully stare into cameras and refer to the loss of his company as a “funeral.” After Chocolaterie Bernard Callebaut fell into receivership, media scoffed at his loss and scholars rolled their eyes as he declared that he would “find a
way…whatever that way would be” to continue making chocolates. After losing everything, including the rights to his name, it seemed hard to understand his hopeful attitude to pick up and start all over. Three years later, we now know him as “Papa Chocolat.” The new company,
which was officially launched in December of 2011, allowed Bernard to start fresh and create new products. While it may have been a lot of work to start from scratch, he considers that it was really a no-brainer to get going again. “Consider a top chef,” Bernard explained. “You can take his restaurant and his recipes away, and he doesn’t care. This is a knowledge-based business and ultimately, when you are a top chef, it’s an opportunity to create new things and think constantly about what you can do better. You have to be grateful for what you have, and you can never ever give up.” While few people would have the strength to recover from such a loss and take ownership for the series of events that caused Chocolaterie Bernard Callebaut to sink, Bernard takes full responsibility for what happened. “I was told once that whatever happens in your life, you create it. At the end of the day, I am the captain of the ship. I can blame it on a wind that was too strong or a wave that was too big — I could find all of these excuses, but I am the captain, so I take responsibility.” Though Bernard hesitated before suggesting that this loss may have been a blessing in disguise, he acknowledges that this hardship has allowed him to create a product that is pure and of top quality. “One of the things that happens to people who go through something like this is that they create a value system,” he said. “You start realizing what is important in life and you make different choices. For me, it is important to take care of my family and to do what
I am passionate about, and I wanted to create a business that was special.” With Bernard Callebaut no longer behind Chocolaterie Bernard Callebaut, he understands that many people still assume he is involved because his name is on the wall. While his old company is simply seen as another competitor, what is important to him as he grows his business is for people to understand that he is not with Chocolaterie Bernard Callebaut anymore and that he has started a new business that creates very different products. “It is so nice when I run into people who say ‘Hey, Papa!’ when I see them [outside of the store] because they know I am behind Papa Chocolat now.” With his new brand and reinvented business, Bernard will not be focusing so much on growth and will instead be focusing on building the business and building a product that he is proud of. Visually and recipe-wise, Papa Chocolat is refreshingly different. Papa Chocolat’s
“Success is not final…failure is not fatal… it’s the courage to continue that counts.” milk chocolate is made with 30 percent less sugar, no corn syrup, and he has eliminated fillers, extracts and flavourings. In addition to working with pure and organic ingredients, Bernard is passionate about working directly with cocoa farmers and is proud to carry products that are 100% traceable, which is a rarity in the chocolate industry. It would be an understatement to call Papa Chocolat a success, but Bernard’s work is not even close to being finished. Though it will take some time for him and his family to get back on their feet, waking up each morning to go to work is exhilarating, and his passion for what he does is evident. “This is a life-long mission,” Bernard explained. “A ‘top’ product is never achievable in my mind because there is always going to be a
level up; always an opportunity to step it up and do it better. I suppose that’s how people who are really passionate about something are wired.” With Bernard’s optimistic attitude, it should come as no surprise to find a chocolate named after Winston Churchill himself in Papa Chocolate stores (“The Winston”). The chocolate, which is made with dried grapes and malt whisky, exemplifies, as Bernard himself does, that hard work does pay off — or as Churchill would say: “Success is not final…failure is not fatal…it’s the courage to continue that counts.” Recruiter, writer and foodie, Andrea finds nothing more exciting than baking with chocolate. If dessert could be eaten for every meal, she would be one happy camper.
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story by Fred Malley CCC photography by Ingrid Kuenzel
Ladybug Chocolate Mousse Makes 15 x 100 g portions
260 mL milk 260 mL 35% cream ¼ vanilla bean 9 egg yolks 1/3 cup (75 g) cane sugar 200 g Callebaut milk chocolate (callets or chopped) 550 g 60% Callebaut chocolate (callets or chopped) 9 egg whites 1/3 cup (75 g) sugar
1. Bring the milk, cream and vanilla Ladybug and Café Espresso Bar & Bakery Marie Leclecq embodies a joie de vivre punctuated with living her philosophy towards nourishing and healing the body. She is genuine and authentic, talking passionately about life and business, with sparkling eyes. Originally from Belgium, then 18 years in Monaco, Marie, with master pastry chef and chocolatier husband, Yves Ghesquiere, immigrated to Calgary in 2003. They started Ladybug and Café Espresso Bar & Bakery in 2004 in the Calgary Farmer’s Market and 2008 in Aspen, where it has become a popular bistro-style destination for breakfast, brunch, lunch and early supper, Wednesdays to Sundays. Leclecq is passionate about sustainable, organic products that are completely non-GMO. It is daunting to source local organic and other raw products that give the gift of health, along with superior flavour and craftsmanship. The juice bar in the café, Delicate & Raw, offers a line of hydraulic coldpress raw, organic juices for cleanses, boosters, energizers and uplifters. Work with her nutritionist to get your body and health jumpstarted. This may seem incongruous in a café offering decadent desserts and food, but they strive to serve only certifiable organic and nonGMO. If Leclecq will not eat it, she will not use it. All menu offerings are made from scratch. There is real hollandaise
on the eggs benedict! Yves Ghesquiere is sharing a light chocolate mousse recipe for holidays or any occasion. The mousse appears in various desserts in the abundant, colourful display case as you enter the café. Tough decisions! The domed chocolate mousse with raspberry mousse filling cloaked in ganache, simply melts in your mouth and is perfectly balanced. For indulgence, or providing a friend with a gift that is healthful and guilt free, try Leclecq’s favourite, the raw truffles. Sweetened with agave, the raw cacao mint crème is refreshing, with a long lingering burst of fresh mint, enrobed in a barely bitter chocolate; they are non-dairy and flour free. There is also a chocolate energy bar and cranberry maple granola prepared fresh each week. Raw chocolate is purported to contain 30 times the antioxidants of conventional chocolate. The secret is to not heat the chocolate above 118° F. Plan ahead for December 24th to place an order for the fresh Christmas Yule log. Preorders start the first week of December; lots of samples to help you decide, and there are gift boxes of raw truffles and other treats. When dining in, the extensive menu may leave you pondering what to enjoy, but your patience will be rewarded with the most healthful food available and conviviality among friends.
bean to a boil over medium heat.
2. Meanwhile, beat the yolks and
cane sugar until light and airy. Add 1/2 cup (125 mL) of hot cream to the yolk mixture and stir to blend.
3. Add the tempered yolk mixture to
the hot cream, stirring with a wooden spoon. Continue heating and stirring the cream and yolks until the mixture coats the back of the spoon. Do not boil.
4. Remove custard from the heat and pour over the chocolate in a mixing bowl, stirring well to melt the chocolate. 5. Whisk the egg whites to soft peaks then add the sugar and continue whisking for 1 minute. 6. Pour the meringue into the
chocolate and gently fold in with a whisk until streaky. Use a spatula to finish folding the meringue in the chocolate.
7. Portion in glasses or ramekins and
refrigerate at least 2 hours. Garnish with chocolate shavings, fresh fruit or ladyfingers.
Brûlée Patisserie Jen Norfolk has been part of Brûlée Patisserie since opening seventeen years ago; seven years as owner. She always liked baking, eventually attending SAIT when changing from a literary career. Her philosophy/style is for elegance and classic roots. You are struck by her trademark use of stunning gilded roses and other florals and fruits, as décor on cakes and tarts. The lemon buttercream cake is a signature item; best to pre-order. The shop creates some wonderful comfort style cookies and squares, if grandma isn’t sending you any. For chocolate, she says, “buy the best you can afford and like”. I observed a dolly of Barry Callebaut coming down the stairs; Norfolk mentions she finds
its flavour and finish more harmonious with her taste. And if there is a block of milk chocolate open, she and her staff must monitor their snacking. Interesting that she loves cocoa nibs too, with their slight bitterness. She also prefers hazelnuts and walnuts, brown sugar, apples and pears. Customer service is important to Norfolk, and she welcomes feedback. Her wish is that Canadians were more
willing to comment on their likes and dislikes, as feedback is the only way to improve. One tenet though, is to make things you like to eat. Norfolk is sharing a recipe for a cake available this holiday season, Ginger Stout Bundt with Cocoa Nibs. They will make it for vegans, by substituting the eggs. It is a one-bowl mix, so not fussy to make.
Gingerbread Stout Bundt Cake Makes 1-6 cup bundt or 1-9x5 loaf
1 cup (225 mL) stout beer 1 cup (225 mL) dark molasses 1 ½ tsp (7 mL) baking soda 3 eggs 1/2 cup (110 g) sugar 1/2 cup (110 g) brown sugar 3/4 cup (175 mL) canola oil 2 cups (450 mL) all-purpose flour 2 Tbs (30 mL) ground ginger 1 ½ tsp (7 mL) baking powder 3/4 tsp (3.5 mL) cinnamon 1/4 tsp (1.5 mL) cloves 1/4 tsp (1.5 mL) nutmeg 1/8 tsp (0.5 mL) cardamom 2 Tbs (30 mL) peeled, grated fresh ginger 1 cup (225 mL) cocoa nibs or chopped dates
1. Bring the stout and molasses to a boil over high heat, turn off the heat and add the baking soda. Let the foam settle.
5. Stir half the liquids into the dry
2. Whisk the eggs and sugar together
6. Pour into a greased and floured
3. Combine the remaining ingredients
7. Bake in a 350° F oven
until light and airy. Whisk in the oil.
and mix well.
4. Whisk the stout and egg mixtures together.
ingredients then add the remainder with the ginger, and stir to combine.
bundt or loaf pan.
approximately 60 minutes or until a pick comes out clean.
he has travelled and studied extensively to hone his craft. The macaron, he says, ‘is perfect edible art, but science is the basis. The shell must be crisp with a soft centre’.
Ohh La La Patisserie Sebastian Judkoviski, patissiere owner of Ohh La La Patisserie, is animated and engaging in his passion for French style pastry. The shop, which opened fifteen months ago, specializes in macarons - small bites, Marie Antionette size, and cakes. A cacophony of colour and delicate flavours punctuated with fruit purees and chocolate awaits you. Judkoviski’s desire to pursue pastry started at the age of 15, working in a shop in Argentina after school and on weekends. Soccer was on the sideline, as was studying economics, which his father insisted he do. Pastry won out, and he enrolled in Culinary School to learn the intricacies of the country’s Italian, French and Spanish influences. His penchant is for things French and
He uses French meringue, with less sugar, to make them. In addition to making his favourite lemon macarons, the lavender and milk chocolate has a lingering sweetness and the delicate lavender is balanced with the chocolate. A feature creation is the maple croissant. It is very sweet with a definitive maple flavour. Perfect with espresso. His croissants have a high ratio of butter to flour, 900 g to 1 Kg. It is difficult to work with and is a two-day process. While apple galette with caramel and vanilla bean ice cream is Judkoviski’s personal favourite, look for his special Christmas macaron cake with chestnut and peppermint. For the holiday season, there are crêpes with Mornay, polenta cakes with prosciutto, vanilla cheesecake with cranberry, and pistachio dacquoise with cranberry and lemon. Pre-ordering is required. On the topic of chocolate, his advice is to buy Belgian couverture with the highest percentage of cocoa solids; it has a better aftertaste, even though it is harder to work with. He is sharing a ganache that you can easily make to use as a filling. He prefers his ganache pure, just chocolate and cream.
Chocolate Ganache 500 g milk chocolate couverture 300 g 36% cream
Chop the chocolate and place in a metal bowl. Heat the cream quickly to a boil, pour over the chocolate and whisk by hand until smooth. Then with a hand blender, mix until perfectly smooth. For a twist, infuse some loose tea in the cream and strain once it boils. Let the cream steep for a few minutes and boil again.
Ladybug and Café Espresso Bar & Bakery: 2132-10 Aspen Stone Boulevard, Calgary T3H 5Z2 403-249-5530 Ohh La La Patisserie: 8561-8A Avenue SW, Calgary T3H 0V5 587-353-0111 Brûlée Patisserie 722-11 Ave SW, Calgary T2R 0E4 403-261-3064
Fred currently validates Individual Learning Modules for Alberta Apprenticeship, for the trade of Cook, and actively mentors and examines chefs across Canada.
Fresh. Local. Delicious.
All Year Long. Open every weekend throughout the Holiday season. Reindeer Day is Friday Dec 6th from 1:00PM to 5:00PM, visit the Reindeer, get your picture taken and try some delicious Hot Chocolate and Goodies.
Thurs, Fri, Sat & Sun - 9 to 5
Great Gourmet Dinner Options To Bring Home For The Holidays by Diana Ng
A time of reflection, family gathering and good food, Christmas is meaningful in so many ways. You have grand ambitions of creating the perfect, Martha Stewart-esque meal. But before the picture-perfect meal, there’s the frantic, last minute run to the grocery store, the panicked call to your turkey supplier to make sure you secure the bird, and all the potential chaos that comes with throwing a big party. There’s no shame in asking for a little assistance for such a big undertaking, right? Right! To help you keep your calm and sanity, here’s a list of dishes you can get on your table that taste just like home cookin’ and maybe even a little better.
For the whole spread… Westin Calgary Suppose you had grand plans to drum up the perfect holiday meal with all the trimmings, but you can’t secure a turkey anywhere or your kitchen is undergoing renovations. For whatever reason, you really can’t make anything more than Rice Krispie squares, but you’d love to have friends over. Well, put a cape over the caterers at the Westin Calgary because they are your heroes. The entire turkey dinner—the show-stopping grain-fed turkey (from 13 to 20 pounds), cranberry sauce, roasted potatoes, chestnut brioche stuffing, rice pilaf, root vegetables, pumpkin pie and English trifle—is available for purchase. If you’ve had enough turkey from Thanksgiving, you can order the maple mustard glazed ham separately instead, as well as all the other side dishes.
For dessert… Yann Haute Patisserie You’ve served your guests the moistest turkey and the creamiest mashed potatoes you’ve ever made. So, why stop there? Don’t follow up on the stunning mains and sides with a disappointing Jello mould. Pop by Yann Haute in Mission for spectacular macarons, cakes or their unique interpretations of Christmas logs—offered in flavours like caramel-nougat, lemon meringue, exotic fruits and peanut butter. Do not, even for a second, settle for the stodgy yule logs covered with waxy chocolate, and garnished with a plastic ornament that you find at the grocery store.
22 • December 2013
For the sides…
For the bird…
Farm and Janice Beaton Fine Cheese So, you make the best sweet potato casserole and Brussels sprouts. We’re not going to take that away from you. But, if you need help with any other side dishes, Farm restaurant and Janice Beaton cheese shop can help.
Wings n Tings If you don’t have a big group coming or you just don’t want to tackle the task of roasting the whole bird, you can try the unconventional and delicious jerk turkey wings from Wings n Tings. The wings are rubbed with an authentic blend of Jamaican jerk seasoning, herbs and aromatics, and come in either original, honey jerk or barbecue jerk.
When the temperature dips in the early winter, cravings turn to bubbly hot, creamy and comforting mac n’ cheese. Farm’s famous, mildly spicy dish, made with gruyere and three-year cheddar is available at the Janice Beaton Cheese Shop. It’s great for vegetarians, too. $14 If you want to kick your salad up a notch, the Paillot de Chevre goat cheese fritter is perfect over a bed of greens and some beets. It comes in a package of two. $11.95 The Main Dish It’s just not Christmas without the coma-inducing potatoes. The Main Dish, known for its ready-to-go dishes, offers roasted garlic and white cheddar mashed potatoes that will end the perennial debate of who makes the best mashed potatoes. If you prefer, or just want to add sweet potatoes to the spread, you can get the creamy sweet potato mash with a hint of cinnamon and nutmeg; it’s the scent of season. To purchase, visit the take away section at the Bridgeland location or their stand in the Calgary’s Farmers’ Market.
A relatively newcomer to the catering scene, Necole Hines has already won rave reviews at Reggaefest and other festivals. Interested? Order your turkey via email at info@wingsntings. ca. We heard a rumour that a Wings n Tings food truck is in the making too. Very exciting! (Minimum order of six wings) Winters Smoked Turkey It is almost impossible to cook a turkey — one of the leanest meats you can buy — to the point of perfection where the breast meat and thigh meat are both cooked but not overdone. The solution? Winter’s Turkey’s smoked turkey, a cured and smoked bird that’s like ham, but better. It comes with cooking instructions so that it’s foolproof, and you can tell people that you made this showstopper.
Avoiding the potential chaos that comes with throwing a party. Diana Ng is the web editor at up! magazine and a freelance food writer who is constantly trying to get food stains out of her shirts.
Step By Step: Cheesecake In A Jar story and photography by Natalie Findlay
With the busy pace of the holiday season, Iâ€™m always looking for a decadent dessert that can be made ahead of time. This cheesecake recipe fits the bill as it is rich, creamy, light and has a sweet, tart topping of cranberries to enliven your palate and your holiday table. There are many ways it can be adapted for different occasions by changing the topping or adding something special to the filling. Quick and easy to make, cheesecake in a jar can be stored in the fridge or freezer until needed, and the jars are easy to carry to your special occasion. Itâ€™s also a great lunchbox treat.
New York Style Cheesecake with Cranberries Makes 7 x 250ml glass jars Preheat oven to 350º F.
Crust 170 g graham cracker crumbs 90 g sugar 80 g butter, melted
Stir together crumbs and sugar. Add melted butter and stir to incorporate. Press 35g of the crust mixture into the bottom and slightly up the sides of a 250g wide-mouth mason jar. Bake 5 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool while making the filling. Turn oven to 325º F.
Options for creating your own unique cheesecakes: • When adding flavourings to your cheesecake filling, add them after all the other ingredients and incorporate gently into the batter. • Stir in ½ cup (125 g) of pumpkin puree along with pumpkin pie spice for a winter treat. This would be wonderful topped with caramel and crushed walnuts. • Add 150 mL of melted chocolate to make this recipe even richer, and top with raspberries. • 3 Tbs (50 mL) of room temperature coffee will kick this recipe into high gear. A drizzle of chocolate will top it off. • 2 Tbs (30 mL) of Calvados stirred into the filling and topped with softened, spiced apples will have them coming back for more.
Filling 2 x 250 g packages cream cheese, room temperature 170 g sugar 10 g flour 2 eggs, room temperature 6 Tbs (95 g) sour cream, room temperature 1 lemon, grated zest 1 Tbs (15 mL) fresh lemon juice 1 tsp (5 mL) vanilla
Note: it is important to make sure that the ingredients are at room temperature. This will help to make the batter smooth and silky.
1. Beat cream cheese on low for 30 seconds. Add sugar and continue beating 3 minutes on low, making sure to scrape down the sides of the bowl. 2. Add the flour and mix to combine.
Beat the mixture on low speed to avoid adding too much air into the batter, which can cause cracking when baked. Note: the batter must be completely smooth at this point. Once you add the eggs any lumps will remain.
3. Add the eggs one at a time and
scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl after each addition.
Other Topping Options: Lemon Curd :: Fresh Berries ::Dulche de Leche & raspberries
4. Add the vanilla, lemon zest and
lemon juice and mix on low just until everything is combined.
5. Pour 125 g of the cheesecake filling
into each jar and set the jars into a high-sided baking container. Add boiling water until the water reaches half way up the sides of the jars. It is easiest to pour the water into the container with the oven door open and the shelf pulled part way out. Cover the container with foil.
6. Bake 20 to 25 minutes. 7. Remove from oven. Remove foil.
Let cheesecakes sit in the water bath another 15 minutes, then remove and cool on the counter for 2 hours. Refrigerate overnight or up to 3 days. Can be frozen 3 weeks.
Topping 215 g fresh cranberries (can use frozen) 60 g brown sugar 3 Tbs (50 mL) water ¼ tsp fresh ginger, grated ¼ tsp ground cinnamon 1 orange, grated zest 2 Tbs (30 mL) Grand Marnier, Cointreau or other orange liqueur
1. In a small pot add all ingredients except orange liqueur. Cook over high heat, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes until the cranberries have popped and the liquid has started to thicken. 2. Remove from heat. Add orange
liqueur and let cool. Remove the cheesecakes and the cranberries from the fridge about 1 hour before serving and top with cranberries.
Note: this topping is on the tart side. If you like a sweeter topping, increase the sugar. Natalie is a freelance writer, photographer and pastry chef. A graduate of Cordon Bleu’s pastry program, she manages her own business too to create custommade cakes. culinairemagazine.ca • 25
Après Ski by Matt Browman
It was 1989. Stowe, Vermont. We came off the hill around 4pm with our daily dose of mountain views, fresh air, exertion, and plenty of cute ski bunnies to activate a sixteen year-olds’ hormones. My feet breathed that sigh as they slipped into a pair of worn runners after the stiff ski boot. Returning to the chalet with immediate and extended family, we lit a fire while my teenage appetite anticipated the oven-baking nachos. Long before an official career in the drinks business, my youthful mind paid no heed to the specific label of the beer we were allowed, but a niggling in my memory wants it to be Stroh’s. The moment sticks mostly because my parents relaxed their typical adherence to the law while my equally underage brothers and I enjoyed one or two beers. The carefree spirit of pre-adulthood, cold outdoor exercise, one of our final family trips and the reward of beer and its buzz, conspired to make it one of the best weekends of my life. Later, 1999. Whistler, B.C. My best friend and I figured we’d learn to snowboard on a five-day trip. We came off the hill around 4:30pm, and not bothering to head back to our hostelcum-‘dance’ club to shower, change or nap, we peeled off our jackets with sore
feet already slipped into soft winter boots and settled into a booth at the Keg. After a couple of beers, dinner hour approached and we splurged on the surf’n’turf and a bottle of some kind of Zinfandel… I want to say Seghesio, or Rosenblum. My appetite made it among the best striploins I’ve tasted to date, and the ripe, soft red wine went down like warm silk. As young adults our tastes had become inquisitive, and I was in my early years of a full-fledged wine career. The exercise, general tomfoolery, eating and drinking of a long weekend ski holiday made it one of the best weeks of my life. The gustatory reward that follows skiing is different than other outdoor exertion. Endorphin-pumping exercise, the mental zone required for slope negotiation, the quiet and vast beauty of the views, the physical relief of finishing and above all, the cold air that combusts more calories than the exercise alone, increases our appetites for peak-no pun intended-eating and drinking experiences. Because our bodies crave the calories, the most rewarding après ski beers
can tend toward higher alcohol, more intense flavours. With the explosion of heady, hoppy IPA, look for West Coast beers: Phillips Kaleidoscope IPA from Victoria ($7 for a 650ml bottle), Elysian Immortal IPA from Washington ($7 for a 650ml bottle) or for something a little milder, Dale’s Pale Ale from Colorado ($19/6 pack). The same goes for wine: we like more crisp white in summer and the warmth of red in the winter. Grab anything from fleshy but firm Amarone (Brigaldera 2008 $63) to ripe red zinfandel (Joel Gott 2011, California $23) to chewy California cabernet (Stuhlmuller 2010 Alexander Valley $49) or opulent Chateauneuf-du-Pape (Chateau la Nerthe, France $60). Matt Browman’s 1980s inception into the restaurant world led to certification from ISG, WSET and the Court of Master Sommeliers.
‘Tis The Season … For Warming Wine by Tom Firth
Whether you call it Glühwein, bisschopswijn, wassail or simply mulled wine, we are talking about spiced or heated wine perfect for winter nights or warming your heart after a wintertime exertion. Recipes and results will vary when made at home, and one of the challenges might be to make a good mulled wine on your first crack at it. Start with the wine; you do want a full flavoured red, and you probably don’t want to spend too much money on it. Portuguese, Australian, or Chilean wines are good value, and burst with red wine
flavours suitable for heating and spicing up. You can find a recipe of your own, or you can just go somewhere like Silk Road Spice Merchants (locations in Inglewood and Calgary Farmers Market) where they sell a pretty good blend of spices for mulled wine. Theirs comes in either a 60 g ($7) or 120 g ($10) package, and a tablespoon or two will suffice for a bottle of wine. For heating the wine, you can simmer on the stove, or I do know people that use a slow cooker on a lower setting instead. The microwave works as well, but on principle, I won’t microwave my wine no matter what it’s for.
Jacqueline from Silk Road says, “We only sell the one option, and we think it’s the best combination of spices for the best result, but I’ve seen many different recipes on how to do it. Some recipes use different combinations of spices, but almost always contain some combination of cinnamon, allspice, cloves and cardamom. I’ve seen some that use star anise too, which isn’t in our blend. Some recipes only use fresh fruit, some ask for the addition of different liquors, like brandy...” But spoken from someone who obviously takes mulling spices seriously, Jacqueline goes on, “When doing mulled wine, my personal preference is to use the cheapest bottle of red wine, our spice blend, and some slices of fresh orange, but I also add a cup of apple juice per bottle of wine to sweeten it.”
To leave you this holiday season, let me share with you an old Saxon toast for the new year to be healthy and hale…Wass hael!
culinairemagazine.ca • 27
Soup Kitchen by Dan Clapson
December is all about staying warm and cosy and a big bowl of ‘comfort’ is always appreciated when it comes to dinner time. These two soups will melt away any winter shivers in a few spoonfuls. Both pair perfectly with family, friends and an extra dash of the holiday spirit. Spicy Cabbage and Roasted Garlic Soup Serves 4-5 Total cook time 50 minutes
1 yellow onion, diced 1 Tbs *gochujang paste 4 cups crushed tomatoes 4 cups (1 L) beef stock 1 cup (240 mL) water 4 cups shredded green cabbage 1 Tbs dried cilantro ½ tsp cayenne pepper 2 bulbs roasted garlic, roughly chopped 2 Tbs sour cream 1 Tbs grainy Dijon mustard salt and pepper olive oil
1. Cook down the diced onion in a large pot with some olive oil on medium-high heat until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the gochujang paste and let cook for another 5 minutes, stirring well to incorporate. 28 • December 2013
2. Next, add the tomatoes, stock, water, and cabbage to the pot and let come to a boil. Reduce to medium heat and let soup simmer, uncovered, for 35 minutes. 3. Place remaining ingredients in the pot and let cook for another 5 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve. * Gochujang paste is a spicy, slightly sweet, dark red fermented Korean chilli paste, available at Asian specialty grocers. Substitute with hot pepper paste if you can’t find it.
White Wine Parsnip Soup with Mussels Serves 5-6 Total cook time 30 min 5 parsnips (approx. 5 cups), peeled and 1 cm chopped 2 red potatoes (approx. 2¼ cups), peeled and 1 cm chopped 1 Tbs salt 2 Tbs butter 2 cloves garlic, minced 1 yellow onion, diced 5 cups (1.2 L) chicken stock 1 cup (240 mL) heavy cream 2 tsp dried basil 1/3 cup (80 mL) dry white wine 2 Tbs fresh parsley, finely chopped 2 cups fresh mussels salt and pepper jalapenos, thinly sliced, for garnish
1. Place chopped parsnips and potatoes in a large pot and fill ¾ full with water. Add salt to the pot and bring to a boil on medium-high heat. Let simmer until fork tender. 2. While the root vegetables are cooking, melt the butter in a second large pot on medium-high heat. Add the garlic and onion and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. 3. Transfer tender root vegetables to the second pot along with the stock, cream and basil. Using an immersion blender, puree until very smooth.
5. Place the white wine and parsley in a medium pan and bring to a simmer. Add in the fresh mussels, cover and let cook until shells pop open, approximately 2-3 minutes. Remove from pan and set aside for now, discarding any mussels that do not open. 6. Add the remaining cooking liquid
from the pan into the soup pot. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
7. To serve, ladle out the soup into
bowls and top with cooked mussels and thinly sliced jalapenos.
4. Let soup come to a simmer, then
reduce to medium heat and let cook for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
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 spending his time listening to 80s rock or 90s boy bands like 98 Degrees. Follow him on twitter @dansgoodside! culinairemagazine.ca • 29
The Sweetest Kind Of Epiphany story by Andrea Fulmek photography by Ingrid Kuenzel
If, by definition, an epiphany is a moment of enlightening realization that allows us to understand a situation from a new perspective, then Epiphanie Chocolate is aptly named. The little store in the 1400 block of 11th Street SW, is what some may call a hidden gem. Tucked away from the hustle and bustle of 17th Avenue SW, they continue to impress Calgarians with chocolates that are almost too pretty to eat. After years of selling their chocolates at craft fairs with much success, John and Debra Fleck decided to open up their own chocolate store in November 2009. “Debra, who makes all the chocolates in store, always loved experimenting with different types of chocolate,” John explained. “As a teenager, Debra had seen a lady in the mall making chocolate and actually skipped class to watch her! It’s just something that she has always been drawn to from a young age.” The Flecks are as warm and welcoming as the store itself, and passionate about sharing their knowledge. Whether you stop in to have a peek at Debra making and moulding chocolates, or simply choose to stop by to feast your eyes, you will be
greeted and informed with genuine enthusiasm about their edible inventory. With high-end chocolate being the model of their business, the Flecks use only the best quality French and Swiss chocolate, and have eliminated the use of butter in the centre of their chocolates, often used as a cheap filler. “Butter really isn’t needed,” John explained. “Don’t get me wrong - butter in other things is great, and I definitely don’t think that it’s a bad thing overall, but it really doesn’t need to be used. Part of the taste difference in our chocolate is because of this.” And John is right when he says that this is only part of the difference. Because Epiphanie chocolates are made with rich ingredients like Madagascar vanilla extract (which can be purchased in small bottles in the shop), the chocolates themselves are flavoursome and unique. From Lemon Verbena-infused chocolate, using herbs from the Flecks garden, to the noteworthy Balsamic Vinegar and Double Smoked Bacon, the standard Pot of Gold seems, well, pretty boring. The Flecks also use a variety of cocoa products, including cocoa beans from the Lake Maracaibo region of Venezuela to complement their fillings. “We don’t want to be like everyone else. We always strive to do unique things, and Debra is always researching different techniques and flavours to work with,” said John. With a focus on technique, each chocolate at Epiphanie is skillfully constructed and many of the chocolates are finely
detailed. Passion Fruit chocolates are shaped into hearts and airbrushed with orange cocoa, while others like Saffron Swirl and Mango resemble mini pieces of art. “Our Tahitian Blonde dark chocolate may not be as colourful as some of our others,” John explained, but it’s a favourite of ours, one that our customers love, and one that really allows you to experience the difference between a sugary fondant and a pure, vanilla bean ganache.” Though Debra decorates most of the chocolates by hand, the Flecks also use edible ink cartridges and cocoa butter transfer sheets to create custom chocolates for a number of different occasions. This special printing and transfer process allows the Flecks to print nearly any photo or logo onto their chocolates, so you can not only make memories, but eat them too. While it’s difficult to ignore the chocolates themselves, it would be a crime not to mention Epiphanie’s hot chocolate. With selections like Ecuadorian Delight, to the scrumptious Mayan Spice that contains serrano, guajillo, and cayenne blended with organic cane sugar, it would be an understatement to say that the Flecks know what they are doing in the world of chocolate. Despite a list that seems endless, Epiphanie Chocolate also offers Korinji cinnamon from India, chocolate covered coffee beans, bulk chocolate by the kilogram and assorted chocolate bars from around the world. For those who like to eat, drink, bake, or give the gift of chocolate, prepare yourself for a sweet epiphany at Epiphanie Chocolate.
A Hot Chocolate recipe for the season
The winter months may mean that we have to bring out our mittens and shovels (yuck), but it also means that we get to bring out our hot chocolate ingredients (yay!). This makeover of your standard hot cocoa recipe will not disappoint. Real Mint Hot Chocolate Serves 4 4 cups bittersweet chocolate, grated or finely chopped 4 cups (1 L) milk ½ cup chopped mint leaves Whipped Cream, for garnish
1. In a saucepan, combine the mint leaves and milk, and gently scald milk over low to medium heat. Remove from heat and let stand (covered) for 8-10 minutes. Strain to remove mint. 2. Return milk to saucepan, place over heat, and slowly add chocolate. Whisk until chocolate is completely melted. Optional: Top with whipped cream and a sprinkle of cocoa and/or a mint leaf.
A Perfect Fit For The Season! by Dan Clapson
We asked five vibrant members of the city’s culinary community for their favourite cookie recipes. ‘Tis the season after all, but waistlines be warned; you won’t be able to resist any of these easy-to-make treats this month. Caution: Baking these and leaving out with milk may result in a visitor getting stuck mid-chimney after a present drop-off on the evening of the 24th... Gwendolyn Richards, Calgary Herald food columnist, patentandthepantry.com Dark Chocolate Chunk Cookies Adapted from Anna Olson, makes 20 cookies These Dark Chocolate Chunk Cookies are revolutionary – they remain thick and chewy when done!
3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened 1 cup brown sugar 1/4 cup granulated sugar 1 egg 2 tsp (10 mL) vanilla extract 2 cups all-purpose flour 2 Tbs cornstarch 1 tsp baking soda 1/2 tsp salt 225 g dark chocolate, cut or broken into chunks
Julie Van Rosendaal, bestselling cookbook author, dinnerwithjulie.com Browned Butter Brownies Adapted from Bon Appetit, makes 16 brownies These are perfect for a quick chocolate fix, and browned butter makes everything better. 3/4 cup butter 1 1/4 cups sugar 3/4 cup cocoa 1 tsp (5 mL) vanilla 1/4 tsp salt 2 large eggs 1/3 cup plus 1 Tbs flour
Preheat oven to 350° F.
1. Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Swirl often until the butter melts completely, then starts to turn a nutty brown, about 5 minutes. 2. Pour into a bowl and stir in the sugar, cocoa, vanilla, and salt. Set aside to cool slightly, then add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. 3. When mixture looks thick and
shiny, stir in the flour and spread into a buttered pan.
4. Bake for 25 minutes, or until
cracked and just set, but still moist and slightly gooey.
You won’t be able to resist any of these easy-to-make treats this month!
Preheat oven to 350°F.
1. Cream butter and both sugars until
smooth. Add egg and vanilla and blend.
2. In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, cornstarch, baking soda and salt. Add to butter mixture and mix until just blended. Fold in chunks of chocolate. 3. Line baking sheet with parchment paper. Drop a spoonful of cookie dough onto the lined sheet for each cookie and bake until just golden brown around the edges, between 10-15 minutes.
Stephanie Eddy, Globe & Mail baking columnist, clockworklemon.com Cranberry & White Chocolate Brown Butter Cookies Makes 40 - 45 cookies It’s not hard not to pull these cookies out of the oven before they’re done, because they look and taste that good. 1 cup + 3 Tbs unsalted butter 1 cup brown sugar, packed 1/2 cup white sugar 2 eggs 1 tsp vanilla extract 2 1/2 cups flour 1 tsp baking soda 1 tsp salt 2 cups dried cranberries 1 1/2 cups chopped white chocolate (or white chocolate chips)
1. In a small pot, heat the butter
over medium heat stirring constantly. Continue to stir until the flecks in the melted butter begin to brown and the liquid turns a light brown. Don’t step away from the stove, it can go from brown to burnt in a flash. Remove the butter from heat, pour into a container, and chill until solid.
John Gilchrist, restaurant critic and writer Mexican Corn Wafers Makes 40 cookies This is a tasty cookie recipe I brought back from New Mexico a few years ago. 2 cups butter (or lard, optional) 2 cups brown sugar 4 cups Masa Harina (Mexican corn flour) 1 tsp salt
Preheat the oven to 350°F.
1. In a large bowl, beat butter until creamy. Add sugar and beat well.
2. Stir together salt and masa harina.
Add flour-salt mixture to butter-sugar and mix until completely blended.
3. Turn dough onto lightly floured surface, pat and roll it to 1 cm thickness. Cut into rounds with 5 cm cutter and place rounds onto un-greased cookie sheet, 2 cm apart. 4. Re-roll and cut remaining dough. Prick each cookie three times with a fork.
5. Bake cookies for 18-20 minutes. Cool on a rack.
Tip: Brown the butter the night before and leave at room temperature overnight to firm up. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
2. Cream together the browned butter,
brown sugar, and white sugar until fluffy. Beat in the eggs one by one, then scrape down the bowl and beat in the vanilla.
3. In a separate bowl, mix the flour, baking soda, and salt together. Stir the flour mixture into the butter and sugar mixture until completely combined. Fold in the cranberries and white chocolate. 4. Line cookie sheets with parchment
paper. Place heaping tablespoons of the cookie batter on the tray and use your fingers to squish them flat.
5. Bake for 9-12 minutes until lightly golden on the edges. Slide the piece of parchment paper onto a wire rack to allow the cookies to cool.
Michael Allemeier, chef and Instructor of Culinary Arts at SAIT Almond and Lemon Biscotti Makes 2 logs of biscotti Traditionally Biscotti is a twice-baked cookie that is dipped in espresso or a sweet dessert wine. Personally, I don’t twice bake them – they are moist and delicious and a bit unusual. 2/3 cup sliced raw almonds 1 cup flour, sifted ¾ cup sugar 1 tsp baking powder ½ tsp baking soda pinch salt 3 Tbs butter, room temperature 2 whole eggs 1 egg yolk 1 tsp (5 mL) vanilla extract 1 zest from lemon, finely chopped
3. Add the eggs to the dry ingredients
Preheat oven to 350° F.
1. In a mixer, using the paddle: blend
the almonds, flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt and butter. Mix until all ingredients are evenly mixed and the almonds start to break.
2. In a separate bowl, beat the eggs, vanilla and zest with a fork.
and mix slowly until dough just comes together. Remove from the bowl and mix to bring together, using a floured board.
4. Cover and let rest for one hour in the fridge.
6. Remove when done and let cool 30 minutes in the pan. Slice biscotti while still warm and let cool.
7. For the traditional way, lay sliced
biscotti in a sheet pan and rebake until golden brown.
5. Divide into two equal portions and roll each into a log, using flour if needed to stop them from sticking. Place log onto floured and buttered sheet pan or use a silpat mat, and bake for 20-25 minutes.
For recommendations of dessert wines to dip your Biscotti into, see p 62.
EVERYTHING YOU NEED FOR THE HOLIDAYS. THURSDAY – SUNDAY, 9AM – 5PM Open: MONDAY December 23, 9AM – 5PM Closed: December 24, 2013 – January 8, 2014 CalgaryFarmersMarket.ca 510 77TH AVE SE
1067634_AD_Culinaire_TableTree_7.625x3.125.indd 1 CREATIVE DIRECTOR
2013-11-06 11:18 AM CMYK
Yellow Door Bistro by Dan Clapson
I distinctly remember my first time dining at Yellow Door Bistro. I had just managed to shake off jetlag from a six-week trip down under and was stopping by for lunch with a friend. While I was away, five new restaurants had opened for business. Five! Feeling determined to play ‘catch up’ throughout the week, Hotel Arts’ new concept restaurant was at the top of my list.
Moulin on finding her sweet freedom again in the Yellow Door kitchen. She continues, “I’ve never heard ‘No, that’s too expensive!’ here when it comes to ordering. So, I can use Valrhona chocolate, 24 karat gold as accents...I’m pretty privileged that I can source out and use the best ingredients; really, very fortunate in that aspect.”
The meal was great; nice, clean flavours. Debating, as most diners do, after finishing up our savoury dishes whether or not we had room for dessert, we leaned towards the ‘more is more’ philosophy, and settled on the Classic Lemon Curd Tart.
kitchen at The Elbow River Casino years ago.
Bright as the ‘Yellow Door’ out front, the dessert contrasted with our slick, white tabletop as sunshine does on a snowy day. Bright notes of citrus in the curd played well with the rich, buttery crust. It was my first restaurant meal in Calgary since I had returned from traveling and it’s still in my mind close to a year later. Now, that’s saying something.
weren’t at that level yet.” explains Ly on his first time meeting Moulin. “We had this great pastry chef that could create all of these beautiful desserts and our clientele was wanting poptarts. Ha, ha.”
Since the dessert course is the last impression a restaurant can leave on a guest’s dining experience, it’s important to make it a memorable one, not unlike my aforementioned lemon tart. Having said that, many restaurants in this city may not have the operational budget to have a dedicated pastry chef on the payroll, so it’s important that the ones that do, use them to the best of their abilities. Yellow Door’s pastry chef Karine Moulin and executive chef, Duncan Ly, go way back. Before coming on-board with the Hotel Arts team, Ly headed up the
“I remember she came in [to the casino kitchen] and she was just this wonderful pastry chef! I knew I wouldn’t be able to keep her motivated there, we just
Ly’s prediction was correct and Moulin left her position at the casino, spending several years working at Saint Germain (the space which Yellow Door now occupies) before a stint at a largerscale operation, The Hyatt, and then teaching at ATCO Blue Flame, which was a ‘dangling in front of a rabbit’ sort of position, as she describes. Good salary, good hours, but she eventually began to yearn for more kitchen creativity. “I guess I’ve actually hired Karine twice! Ha, ha, ha.” jokes Ly. “It was nice to come back here where it’s more boutique. It’s a bit of a different emphasis. Hotel Arts is definitely geared more towards quality as opposed to quantity,” points out
Keeping the dessert menu current and inspired at Yellow Door is not all Moulin has to handle throughout the week. She’s also in charge of the newly reconceived Raw Bar’s sweet offerings as well as all the custom cakes and sugary edibles to go along with the full spectrum of events that the hotel hosts over the course of the year. Ly explains, “One of the markets we’ve been able to capture at Hotel Arts is that we don’t do cookie cutter sort of functions. Every one is different and unique...on the dessert side of things, we do a ton of bar mitzvahs, weddings... so Karine is always customising her desserts.” From well-detailed cakes shaped like soccer fields or Louis Vuitton purses (really!) to a giant Valrhona white chocolate mousse pyramid, Moulin’s artful hand knows no limits when it comes to her work on the banquet side of things. It’s the seasonal focus
that Yellow Door puts on their menu, though, that the pastry chef especially loves. “It plays in our favour that I am here for all of our outlets. I started out as a trained chef that wanted to learn more pastry skills, so I moved in that direction and then stayed in that direction.”
rather, can’t be - lends itself to adding a little extra character into all aspects of the Yellow Door menu. A white, black and yellow colour scheme, coupled with design elements like rabbit-shaped lamps and a window shutter accent wall help exude a sort of playfulness that Moulin and Ly both aim to extend onto their plates.
Desserts like Moulin’s now-signature L’île Flotante, although a mainstay on the dessert roster, evolve with the changing seasons. To stay warm and cosy in the late fall, one can dip into this rich dessert of light meringue, warm vanilla crème anglaise and a fresh madeleine on the side. Then there are the hand-painted chocolates that truly are little works of art.
“The foundation of the desserts here is classical French, and because it is so whimsical in here, I try to have pulled sugar or some kind of fun element. The beauty of this restaurant is that I can be a little bit more playful on my menu, so I do try to push the envelope a little bit... bright, glitter sauces on the plate and other things that I can get away with because of this room.”
The deep colours of her take on a ‘Macaroon’ also work well with the late fall season, with an Okanagan stone fruit compote finished with Chantilly cream and a touch of bergamot (think earl grey tea) sorbet. After all, it is December, so what’s the ‘ying’ of comfort without a subtle ‘yang’ of some chill?
“We start off together with a vision of
The savoury side here is also deserving of some limelight, seeing comforting, but elevated dishes like Duncan Ly’s rich Duck Cassoulet or Orange Cardamomglazed Chicken with cauliflower and almonds, both make a warming choice for dinner on a cold autumn evening. The interior, not to be ignored - or 38 • December 2013
where we want the menu to be...then I let Karine use her skills and creativity and really tweak it to where she wants to go. Ultimately, they’re her desserts.” adds Ly. Yellow Door is still a hotel restaurant, and while many hotel establishments are not necessarily front of mind for diners, Ly is determined to stay on the top of his game in Calgary’s competitive restaurant market. “It’s very challenging because we are in a hotel and we always have to keep our guests in mind, but we have to find that balance, as we are a restaurant too.” he admits before elaborating. “Making sure that we stay true to what we are as a restaurant, the quality of ingredients that we use, being sustainable. Just making sure that we’re competing with the other restaurants in the city.” Moulin gets the last word in, proudly pointing to the chefs’ kitchen team that help her and Ly execute their menu successfully, “I think it’s really authentic, not because I work here, but these are my favourite restaurants in the city because I know the cooks are skilled and I know the kind of products they’re using. ”
“I really do think what we’re doing together here is fantastic.”
Use the delicious compote from Karine’s dessert on top of a classic cheesecake or pound cake this holiday season.
Custard 1 ½ cups (350 mL) milk 1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise 3 egg yolks 75 g caster sugar
Okanagan stone fruit compote
7 Tbs (100 mL) Chinook honey 1 vanilla pod, split in two 1 cardamom pod 1 lime, zest and juice 1 sprig fresh thyme 6 apricots, halved and stoned 3 peaches, quartered and stoned 3 nectarines, quartered and stoned
1. Pour the milk in a deep saucepan over medium heat. Add the vanilla bean. Bring gently to the point of boiling. Remove from the heat. 2. Mix the egg yolks and sugar in a bowl with a wooden spoon until thick. 3. Pour hot milk over the yolk mixture
and mix well. Transfer into a clean saucepan, then heat and simmer gently for 5 minutes, stirring constantly until it begins to thicken and coats the back of a spoon. Do not let boil.
4. Strain the mixture and discard the vanilla bean.
Meringues 3 eggs, separated 40 g caster sugar Pinch of salt
1. Preheat the oven to 300º F. Beat egg whites until stiff with a pinch of salt. When firm, gradually stir in the sugar and continue to beat. Transfer into a
Your chance to win a $200 Yellow Door Bistro gift card in the ‘Name Our Horse’ competition!
dish and cook in the oven for about 20 minutes. Caramel 125 g granulated sugar 50 mL water Handful toasted almonds
1. Place sugar and water in a saucepan
and heat gently until dissolved. Bring to the boil and simmer until deep golden. Halt the cooking by plunging the base of the pan into a sink of icy water.
2. Divide the custard into individual cups/glasses/bowls. Carefully scoop and place the egg whites and put into the dishes. Drizzle caramel over and sprinkle with toasted almonds. Served slightly chilled. Yes, one very lucky person will win $200 to spend eating at Yellow Door Bistro! Yum! To win, go to culinairemagazine.ca and let us have your suggestion for the horse’s name that you see in the photo! Or Tweet: “I want to name the #yellowdoorhorse _______ @ CulinaireMag @YellowDoorYYC The horse’s name that Yellow Door likes the best will win this fabulous prize! Good luck, we can’t wait to hear from you!
1. Using a food processor, place the honey, vanilla pod, cardamom pod, lime zest and juice and sprig of thyme and pulse for 2 minutes. 2. Toss the fruit in a large mixing bowl until it is covered with the honey mixture. 3. Place the fruit on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and roast at 300º F for about 15-17 minutes.
Ways to Spice Up Shortbread by Laura Lushington
Always a holiday staple in the kitchen, shortbread recipes have been passed down through generations. Although traditionally one part sugar, two parts butter and three parts flour (with a pinch of salt), a recipe for shortbread can be hotly contested by avid home bakers.
Every December, our family friend, Mr B, will bring over a batch of his claimto-fame shortbread to be graded against my Mom’s recipe. We’ll all hum and haw over the crumbly texture, the baking times - of course, the day’s humidity plays a big role according to Mr B - and which one has the best flavour. There never really is a clear winner because, come on, who can say no to any combination of butter and sugar? If you’re looking to be on the shortbread shortlist, try one of these sweet or savoury additions for a cookie that’s simply supreme.
1. Create Lemon Basil Shortbread
by adding 2 Tbs lemon zest and ¼ cup chopped fresh basil. Or try lime zest with basil, or orange zest with 1/3 cup dried cranberries.
2. For Cheese and Nut Shortbread, add 1 cup of cheese and ½ cup of chopped nuts. Mix and match your favourites! Combinations to try: • Cheddar and pecan • Gorgonzola and pistachio • Blue cheese and walnut
3. Fruity Cheese and Nut Shortbread. Do the same but with nuts and fruit! Add a ½ cup of chopped nuts and a 1/3 cup chopped (usually dried) fruit. Combinations to try: • Cherry and pecan • Cranberry and pine nut • Cherry and almond
4. Turn your shortbread into an easy version of a Snickerdoodle by simply rolling the cookies in a mixture of 2 Tbs cinnamon and ¼ cup sugar. 5. For shortbread with a sweet punch, try adding these spices and cocoa to create Mexican Hot Chocolate Shortbread: ½ cup unsweetened cocoa 1 tsp cinnamon ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
6. Chocolate lovers rejoice! Here are
three easy ways to add chocolate to a shortbread recipe:
• Add 1 cup chocolate chips (you decide whether they’re dark, milk or white!) • Add 3 Tbs unsweetened cocoa powder with the dry ingredients • Dip your cooled shortbread in 225 g of melted semi-sweet chocolate (chop beforehand for easy melting). Sprinkle with fleur de sel for the perfect saltysweet treat.
Lushington Family Shortbread Makes 24 Cookies 1/2 cup (125 mL) cornstarch 1/2 cup (125 mL) icing sugar 1 cup (250 mL) all-purpose flour 175 mL butter, softened Pinch of salt
1. Sift together cornstarch, sugar and flour. With hands, blend in butter until a soft dough forms. 2. Shape into 2.5 cm balls. If dough is too soft, cover and chill for 30 minutes. Place balls 1 2.5 cm apart on ungreased baking sheets then flatten with fork. 3. Add sprinkles on top for a festive touch! 4. Bake at 300° F for 15 to 20
minutes or until edges are lightly browned. Cool.
Mr. B’s Shortbread
7. For a Canadian spin, make Maple
Walnut Shortbread. All you need to do is add 2 Tbs (30 mL) maple syrup and ½ cup walnuts to your recipe.
8. Herby Shortbread. Add herbs for a subtle flavour that will leave your guests wanting more. Use less if you’re using a dried herb and more if it’s fresh. Try: • 2 tsp dried lavender • 1 Tbs dried rosemary • 2 Tbs fresh sage
Makes 24 Cookies 1/2 cup (125 mL) cornstarch 1/2 cup (125 mL) icing sugar 1 cup (250 mL) all-purpose flour 1/2 package (225 g) butter, softened Pinch of salt
1. Sift together cornstarch, sugar and
flour. With your hands (and tender loving care, says Mr B), blend in butter until a soft dough forms.
2. Shape into 2.5 cm balls. Place balls 2.5 cm apart on ungreased baking sheets then flatten with fork. Bake at 325° F for 20 minutes or until edges are lightly browned. Cool.
Laura Lushington is a recent graduate of Mount Royal University’s Bachelor of Communication – Journalism program. She’s @LauraLushington or lauralushington.com culinairemagazine.ca • 41
From Far and Wide: Winter Revelry Canadian Style by Tonya Lailey
Imagine Christmas dinner in the 17th century, when winter’s elements were close by and threatening, when all the components of the meal were hard-won in forest, field and over fire. What was it like to feast in the North American wilds?
I’m not suggesting a holiday dinnertime re-enactment ceremony - I’ve met too many ill-adjusted reality history buffs. But I’m acknowledging a yearning for the simple pleasures - an orange in the toe of a hand-knit sock, the smell of pine indoors, drippings of meat fat, a festive feeling. Here is my small vision of winter revelry, call it Christmas dinner if you like: Wine from Canada, food from Alberta (largely) assembled in comfort and with joy... The wines are bright, lively characters, apt foils for cold-weather foods. Grapes grown in northern climates tend toward lower alcohol contents and higher total acidities than their equatorial counterparts. These are good traits in wines for winter feasting. 42 • December 2013
The wood fire has found a settled burn. Bottles of 2009 Benjamin Bridge Brut ($49) rest in snow beds just out the front door. The fine bubbles in each sparkling wine formed during a secondary fermentation within the bottle after yeast and a sugar solution (dosage) were added to the base wine. Bottle fermentation to capture carbon dioxide and the subsequent removal of the spent yeast without losing effervescence, describe key steps in the méthode classique of sparkling wine production. The Brut’s grapes – L’Acadie, chardonnay and seyval - were grown in the Gaspereau Valley of Nova Scotia,
a place uncannily similar in climate to Champagne, France where the méthode classique evolved and became famous. From idea to conception, Benjamin Bridge is an impressive tale of thoughtful planning and exacting execution. The wines express that fineness. Friends and family gather fireside. Snow-crusted Brut in hand, we pop the cork and pour. We tuck into thymerubbed duck prosciutto from Greens Eggs and Ham farm. Cunningham’s smoked trout drizzled in homemade mayonnaise whisked with lemon juice, and Brassica’s dill mustard, nudge the herbal citrus notes in the Brut. A Sunworks farm chicken roasts, stuffed with half a lemon, butter, fresh tarragon, sage, cloves of garlic (recipes are easy to
find - don’t be afraid to change up the herbs or to go heavy on the butter). We move to the kitchen to peek at the bird.
We satisfy our appetites for crisp, salty meat by frying bacon - half slices of country-style, fried until crunchy (Old Country Sausage Shop, Valbella Meats). We regroup by the fire with a bacon pile and bottles of Joie Farm’s 2012 A Noble Blend ($29) from the Naramata Bench (BC). The wine is all Christmas – citrus and spice. The acidity draws out the meat’s sweet wood smokiness the way orange juice jives with breakfast bacon, only with finesse. Things are getting cosy. We eat mandarin oranges, tossing the rinds into the fire to kindle brief perfumed flames.
The chicken is cooked. A friend decants the next wine. It’s Norman Hardie’s 2009 Prince Edward County Pinot Noir ($40) “Unfiltered” (Ontario). We let the chicken rest. My sister slices potatoes - sweet and russet - with a mandolin, tosses them in olive oil and sea salt and sets them on a baking sheet
Complimentary wine, beer or spirit tastings every Friday.
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for roasting. Someone digs through the pantry and pulls out jars of pickled beets and carrots. When the potatoes are nearly ready, I fry fresh sage leaves from a window pot in a bit of the bacon fat left in the cast-iron pan. We don’t bother to make gravy. We slice the bird at the table and spoon the pan juices. The pinot is poured. We appreciate its savoury aromas that belong with fried sage, roast chicken and potatoes. It has a ruby colour the beets share. The wine’s tart red fruit flavours set in motion the wine/food rhythm I always hope for - each holding its own, each preparing the other for the best possible performance in ongoing turns.
from the snow impressions of the earlier brut. The cider is mouthwatering. Both cheeses are earthy, nutty and creamy, although each is distinct. Together with the vibrant naturally concentrated apple sweetness of Pinnacle, I’m ready to believe I could eat and drink through the afternoon all over again.
Finding the Food Duck prosciutto - greenseggsandham.ca Chicken - sunworksfarm.com Bacon - valbellagourmetfoods.ca Old Country Sausage oldcountrysausages.com
It’s now dark but for the firelight. The homemade Christmas cake is cut into fingers. PEI Avonlea Cheddar and Quebec’s La Blackburn are at room temperature. I fetch the Domaine Pinnacle Ice Cider ($33) (Quebec)
Avonlea Cheddar/La Blackburn Cheddar - jbfinecheese.com Cunningham’s smoked trout cookbookcooks.com, jbfinecheese.com Tonya Lailey was born under a Niagara Chardonnay vine. She’s still got toes in the dirt at Lailey Vineyard, and settled in Alberta, raising kids, selling wine and writing.
Wine from Canada, food from Alberta (largely) assembled in comfort and with joy...
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Bubbles – Not Just For New Year’s Eve Anymore by Steve Goldsworthy
Like the delicate white flakes that swirl in a holiday snow globe, the ascending bubbles in a flute of sparkling wine create a feeling of instant joy. While Champagnes and other sparkling wines are often enjoyed during the holiday season, these wines don’t require a special occasion. Almost every winemaking country produces some form of sparkling wine. The Italians have their Prosecco, the Spanish - Cava. But the country that wears the sparkling crown is France. While several regions in France do produce sparkling wines, the most famous bubbles of all come from Champagne. Like most wines in France, Champagne gets its name from its region of origin, just east of Paris. Therefore, only sparkling wine produced in the region of Champagne can bear the name. Its cooler climate gives grapes like chardonnay, pinot noir and pinot meunier the classic acidity needed for quality sparkling wine. The emergence of sparkling wine came about quite by accident. Early Champenois wine makers were competing with the richer reds and whites of Burgundy. Their cooler climate meant their grapes were never fully ripened. Also, as winter approached, fermentation would actually stop in the cellars before the yeast could utilize all the sugars in the wine. In the warmth of spring, fermentation would begin a second time. This second fermentation in the bottle released carbon dioxide having nowhere to go but to dissolve
into the wine, ready to be released once the cork was popped.
which are much less common. Brut is the standard for most champagnes.
One of the greatest influences on early Champagne viticulture was the Benedictine monk Dom Pérignon. (Yes. That Dom Pérignon). In the early 1700s, Pérignon began perfecting techniques for vineyard management, harvest and fermentation. The popular myth that he “invented sparkling wine” has more to do with his work to perfect the process. He too was looking to rid his wine of bubbles. Yet his experiments with yeast and sugars led to the principles of producing modern sparkling wine in the region.
The grape component defines the name. Anything called “Champagne” will be made predominately from chardonnay, and either or both pinot noir and pinot meunier. “Blanc de Blanc” is made exclusively from chardonnay. While “Blanc de Noir” consists only of pinot noir.
It was the Benedictine monks of Saint Hilaire that first bottled the sparkling wine Blanquette de Limoux near Carcassonne in 1531. In 1662, English scientist Christopher Merret presented the Royal Society with what he called the méthode champenoise process of creating sparkling champagne wines. It wasn’t until the Duke of Orléans began serving sparkling champagne at his Palais-Royal in the mid-1700s that bubbles really caught on. Moët & Chandon, Louis Roederer, PiperHeidsieck and Taittinger all emerged shortly after.
Brut Force Sparkling wines come in a varying levels of dryness. From sweeter to dryer, the categories are demi-sec, sec, extra dry and brut. There are also the dryer categories of extra brut and zero dosage
A good champagne will be defined by its toasty mouth-feel and crisp acidity. This makes it a perfect match with many dishes, including Thai and Indian. There are many impressive champagnes on the market starting in the $45 range. The Montaudon Non-Vintage Brut offers a soft, feminine-style champagne ($52). The Delamotte Brut has a little more weight, with classic hints of toast and green apple ($56).
Another interesting category in the Champagne world is “Grower’s Champagne”. These are houses that don’t necessarily have the volume and growing contracts to sell to the big boys. Instead, they produce their champagne independently and sell direct to the market. This is a great way to excellent value. Leaders in this category are Ayala who make a brilliant Zero Dosage Brut Nature ($70). A new and very
impressive producer is Pehu Simonet. Their Selection Brut Grand Cru has complex notes of citrus and apple pie crust. At $75 it is a bargain compared to the larger producers.
Champagne Alternatives Of course there are bubbles to fit every occasion and budget. If you don’t want to drink like Bond and his Bollinger, try some inexpensive alternatives. Prosecco is probably the most popular alternative sparkling wine. From Italy’s Veneto and Friuli Venezia Giulia regions, it is a more fruit-forward, easy-drinking alternative. Look for the Adami Garbel Brut Prosecco, a lively, versatile value ($24). Carpenè Malvolti are one of the pioneers in the region. Their Extra Dry and Rosé are a zesty, fruit-forward treat ($23).
Spain produces more than 18 million bottles of sparkling a year, second only to Champagne. My personal favourite, the Zeta Cava Brut Rosé ($20), is bursting with wild strawberry and pomegranate notes. Perfect with Christmas dinner. Another bubble of note is the Graham Beck Brut from South Africa. A blend of chardonnay and pinot noir, it is the closest I have tasted to a decent champagne without being from Champagne.
Steve Goldsworthy is a freelance writer, screenwriter and filmmaker. He has spent 17 years running Britannia Wine Merchants.
Tiny Red BubblesÂ by BJ Oudman
Any cause for celebration summons to mind a bottle of bubbles - champagne, prosecco and cava are routinely poured for the occasion (depending on budget and preference). Self-proclaimed bubble-heads do not even need an excuse to pop a cork. Most bubbles are white; some are rosĂŠ, but what if your palate prefers something darker? Less well known, but definitely worthy of an invitation to the party, are sparkling reds. Colder weather inspires more red in your glass, as does the holiday season! But remember, like all other bubbles, sparkling reds too are best enjoyed well chilled. Theoretically, any red grape can be made into a full-blown red sparkling wine, but the most commonÂ are shiraz and pinot noir. Pinot noir is a major component of champagne (the other two grapes in the champagne toolbox are chardonnay and pinot meunier) but to avoid any red colour in the finished wine, the juice is pulled off the grape skins before the colour is extracted from the red grapes. Champagne is made in the traditional method or methode champenoise where the bubbles comes from a second fermentation taking place in the bottle; sparkling wine can also be made in the charmat method in which the second fermentation takes place in larger tanks.
Sparkling pinot noir tends to be paler in colour, intense in flavour and generally has good acidity. Bird In Hand Sparkling Pinot Noir 2012 from New Zealand is made 100% from fruit from the Adelaide Hills. The aroma is of strawberries, but it is a dry, medium body wine that finishes with a bit of tartness. Enjoyable on its own but even better with oysters or a leisurely lunch of cold cuts and salads. $35. Australia takes its sparkling seriously. Shiraz grapes destined for bubbles are harvested earlier for less sugar, more acidity and less tannic and polyphenol structure. Malolactic fermentation is usually avoided and oak is rarely used, inviting natural grape aromas of dark berries, chocolate and spice, to shine. Although produced in a range of styles, generally expect sparkling shiraz to be a bit sweeter than its still counterpart. It will be deep red in your glass and fullbodied on your palate.
Sparkling reds are definitely worthy of an invitation to the party.
Try Paringa Sparkling Shiraz 2008. Produced in the appellation of Riverland, this is a dry style of wine with raspberries and blueberries up front, and tannins to support the back end. Bubbles lift the fruit and spice characteristics to give a long finish. A great pairing for holiday season brunch. $21. In addition to these popular red varietals, other sparkling reds can be found from specific regional areas. Just as Italyâ€™s popular white bubbles are prosecco from Veneto, their red is lambrusco, from the Emilia and Lombardy regions. This is usually aromatic, sweet or dry and quite effervescent. Produced using the costeffective charmat method, the result is a fruity, light and inexpensive bottle.
Lini 910 Labrusca Lambrusco Rosso NV from Emilia-Romagna is almost purple in colour, frothy and dry. Featuring tart sour cherries with just a little bit of funk, this sparkling is a natural pairing with Italian regional food such as lasagna, bolognese and charcuterie. $18.
dark it is called a black sparkling wine. Produced in the Progreso region in the traditional method, it is full of berries, spice and tannins to hold up to protein from â€œoilyâ€? fish to duck confit! $32. Moldova is a country we see few imports from, but Moldovans were pioneers in the world of sparkling reds. Viticulture was the occupation of the population for years with wine production dating back to the fourteenth century. The industry suffered interruption not only due to phylloxera, but situations of political unrest, including the Ottoman Empire and the reign of Mikhail Gorbachev. Viniculture there is recovering and growing again.
Cricova Cuvee Prestige NV is produced in the methode champenoise using cabernet sauvignon grapes. Cricova is not only the name of the winery, but also the name of the city where it is produced - a labyrinth of 120 K of underground tunnels. Aromas of violets, black currants and cherries finish on the palate with a burst of sweet ripe fruit. $30. Go ahead, break tradition, and pop open the cork on an effervescent red this holiday season!
Uruguay is known for tannic tannat (say that quickly three times!), but the grape can also be made into a sparkling brut that fills a glass with fruity complexity. The adventurous should try Pisano Brut Nature Tannat for a wine that is so
BJ Oudman is a physical therapist with a passion for food and wine. She travels the world when she has time between consulting in both physical therapy and wine.
Be True To Your Beer School by David Nuttall
As you read this, students in Olds, Alberta, are winding down their first semester in the halls of academia, intent on graduating in two year’s time with a diploma in something that has never been offered in western Canada before.
In collaboration with Niagara College, the new Brewmaster Program at Olds College will offer students an education that will allow graduates to pursue a variety of jobs in the brewing industry. To facilitate this, the Olds College Teaching Brewery and Pilot Brewery were built on the campus. Funded by 54% government grants and 46% through fundraising and sponsorship, this 2,300 square foot, one barrel, brewing facility has three fermentation tanks, a science lab, cold storage and a beer store. It is also attached to the new $16 million Pomeroy Inn and Suites hotel, which has restaurants and lounges that will serve the beer brewed next door. This program was originally launched under the Canadian Food and Wine Institute at the Niagara-on-theLake campus of Niagara College in 2005. About three years ago, Olds College approached Niagara with a proposal to “co-invest” with Olds in a brewing program. Through the next sixteen months, the partnership and construction plans took shape. When the call for student applicants went out, over 100 people responded. The first-year group of 25 men and one woman range in age from 18 to 40 years
breweries and brewpubs planned or under construction in the United States, and over 60 in Canada. In Alberta, there are at least six new breweries or brewpubs expected to open by 2014. That is the same number expected to open just in Vancouver, in a province where there is already seven times the number of breweries as in Alberta. Many of these planned breweries will be looking for employees with some form of formal training. While the program will no doubt produce brewers in the future, there will also be graduates in brewing technology, brewery operations, sales management, and advanced business applications specific to the beer industry.
old; they come from across Canada, and some have left lucrative positions at their previous employers to pursue what has obviously been a lifelong dream. The one word that kept coming up in conversations with them was “passion” for beer and brewing. The program acknowledges the need for graduates in the expanding brewery, microbrewery and brewpub industries. In 2011 and 2012, a new brewing facility opened, on average, every week in Canada. In the United States, it was ten times that amount. This growth is also accelerating - in Canada over fifty breweries opened by mid-August 2013. In the United States, over 460 breweries opened during the same time. Even in Europe, where you would think thousands of years of brewing history would have stabilized the industry; over fifty new breweries opened in Germany this year by August, and almost four times that number in the United Kingdom. Similarly, over 170 new breweries have sprouted up in the traditional wine countries of France, Spain and Italy. While true numbers are hard to find, there are approximately 1,200
Worldwide, there are a number of different institutions offering a variety of programs related to the brewing industry, the most well known being University of California, Davis Master Brewing Program (and its four year
waiting list), the Siebel Institute of Technology and World Brewing Academy (Chicago), The Institute of Brewing and Distilling (London, England), International Center for Brewing and Distilling, Heriot-Watt University (Edinburgh, Scotland), the Doemens Academy (Munich, Germany) and others. The need for a more local brewing school to supply the people for the new facilities being built or planned in Alberta and British Columbia alone is obvious. The program’s courses do not just involve learning how to brew good beer. The intention is for the graduates to be able to not only understand and demonstrate basic fundamentals and advanced methods of beer making using different beer styles and characteristics, but also be able to conduct laboratory analysis of beer and evaluate its consistency and quality. On the business side, they are expected to apply
We are at the dawn of the “Great Alberta Brewery Explosion”.
business principles, strategies, marketing and public relations techniques related to brewery operations, including sales, human resource management, and government legislation. Understanding the state of the current beer industry, including technology, production, packaging, handling, and advertising are also necessary skills the course intends to bestow upon its students. The college will be exploring the use of different yeasts and growing their own barley and hops on campus, enabling the students to study the beer making process from “grain to glass”. The other courses deal with business mathematics, computer applications, workplace communication, and workplace professionalism. By the second year, students will continue to learn more about the history of brewing, and will also learn to evaluate wine and spirits as well. They will also begin formulating their own beer recipes, and learn more about filtration, carbonation, finishing and packaging. Courses on specialty brewing, beer evaluation, judging and the state of the brewing industry today will give the students an idea of what is being produced in the real world. Finally, courses in brewery and human resources
management, beer sales and promotions will all involve understanding breweries’ personnel and marketing requirements. The instructors for this program come with a wide range of experience. While some of the educators for the business classes are incumbent Olds faculty, the brewing specific courses will come from a broad spectrum of educators. The principal brewmaster is Duncan Britton, who trained at the Siebel Institute in Chicago, as well as in Germany, and has worked for a couple of breweries in Alberta. The plan is to also involve local brewmasters working in the industry to offer their insights throughout the program, as well as other people working in the beer business, such as importers, sales agents, marketers, retail beer salespeople etc., in order to provide a holistic view of the industry. Of course, there are numerous chances for the students to intern at local breweries, and, with their facilities, they should be able to hone their skills with some topnotch home brewing. The hope is that by graduation date in early 2015, the graduates of the inaugural class will either go on to further their brewery education, or fill the need for skilled brewery personnel and management staff at new or existing breweries.
As craft beer continues to be a growth industry, the need for people with technical skills not only in beer making and brewery/ brew pub operations, but also in marketing, public relations, licensee and agency sales and operations through to the retail sales and special events level will continue to grow.
For more information on the Olds College Brewmaster and Brewery Operations Management program see www.ocbeer.ca
Let’s hope, with the addition of some savvy investors, we are at the dawn of the “Great Alberta Brewery Explosion”.
Christmas Gift Guide For The Food Obsessed by Carmen Cheng
Tis the season to start Christmas shopping gifts. Count down to Christmas with these 25 delicious gift ideas to suite every food lover in your life and every budget. Rush Hour Cooking Class Blood Orange Olive Oil and Garlic Cilantro Balsamic Vinegar The Blood Orange Olive Oil can be used with meats, fish, and even in baking. Pair it with the Garlic Cilantro Balsamic Vinegar for an easy and flavourful salad dressing. $19.95 per bottle at Oliv Tasting Room olivtastingroom.com
Chai Spice Baking Blend A mug of Chai brings warmth and comfort to those cool winter evenings. Bakers will love adding this Silk Road Chai Spice Baking Blend to everything from cookies, cakes, waffles, to their morning oatmeal. $6.99 (80g), $9.99 (160g) at Silk Road Spice Merchants silkroadspices.ca
Bunka Knife, Masakage Kumo The avid home cook will love this sexy and multipurpose knife. Handmade in Japan, this line is named Kumo (clouds) for the stormy clouds floating along the blade. $285 at Knifewear knifewear.com
Choklat Snobbery 101 Class Learn how chocolate is made and what differentiates great chocolate from the others. Is there a better way to spend an evening than immersed in chocolate? $39.95 at Choklat sochoklat.com
Chefs at the Culinary Campus will demonstrate a delicious dinner recipe and provide the ingredients needed to recreate the dish at home. A much better way to spend rush hour than being stuck in traffic. $45 at SAIT Culinary Campus culinarycampus.ca (Stephen Avenue)
Polyscience Sous Vide Professional Creative Series Immersion Circulator If you’ve ever eaten a juicy and tender sous vide steak you’ll understand why sous vide has become all the rage amongst chefs. Polyscience has launched an immersion circulator designed for home cooks, the perfect gift for serious foodies. $449 at Williams Sonoma williams-sonoma.ca
Polyscience The Smoking Gun With this Smoking Gun, it’s easy to add smoky flavour to cheeses, fish, butter, and sauces or other liquids. Smoked Bourbon anyone? $124.95 at Williams Sonoma williams-sonoma.ca
Charitable Donation Brown Bagging for Calgary’s Kids has an admirable goal: no hungry kids in Calgary. They make 2000 lunches every day for kids in this city. Give the gift of nourishment to those who need it. Any denomination at Brown Bagging For Calgary’s Kids bb4ck.org
Brown Butter Caramel Sauce A jar of this Brown Butter Caramel Sauce makes for the perfect hostess gift. It is dreamy served with homemade apple pie or ice cream. $7 at CRMR at Home crmr.com/athome (17th Avenue)
Customizable Tea Mug Create a personalized mug for the tea drinkers you know. Simply bake this DAVIDsTEA mug for your design to set. It’s easy tea-sy! $22.50 at DAVIDsTEA davidstea.com
Coffee Subscription Keep the coffee lovers in your life well stocked with monthly deliveries of freshly roasted beans. Coffee Subscriptions can be purchased for 3 months, 6 months, and 12 months. Costs range from $114 to $228 at Caffe Rosso cafferosso.ca
DIY Food Gifts in a Jar Homemade food gifts are inexpensive and always appreciated. Fill a jar with homemade granola, apple butter, or all the ingredients needed for your famous cookie recipe. Stock up on jars and bottles at Canadian Tire. $7.79 for a dozen 500 mL mason jars. canadiantire.ca
Cochon Salt and Pepper Shakers by Jonathan Adler Reminiscent of the ceramic pottery that made Jonathan Adler famous, these cute pig-shaped salt and pepper shakers bring style to any table. $50 at Kit Interior Objects kitinteriorobjects.com (11th Avenue)
Sony QX10 Cybershot Sony’s latest compact camera lens turns your smart phone into an 18 megapixel point and shoot camera with 10x zoom. Those food photos on Instagram will look a whole lot better. $249.99 at Sony, Best Buy, or Future Shop
Workshop Apron Get the same chef gear as the professionals. Medium Rare brings style to kitchen gear. Made with leather straps and brass hardware, it’s no wonder why their Workshop Apron is popular amongst well-known chefs. $89 at Medium Rare Chef Apparel mediumrarechef.com
The Snack Box Send a loved one a box of delicious and healthy snacks made in Canada. You can even order a gluten free snack box for any friends staying away from gluten. $40 for a Snack Box with 12 Healthy Snacks or opt for 10 Gluten Free Snacks at $35 from Foodie Pages foodiepages.ca
Afternoon Tea Afternoon Tea is an elegant and relaxing experience with the dainty sandwiches, pretty pastries, jams, and clotted cream. Fairmont Palliser sells gift cards for their decadent Afternoon Tea service. $30 per person at Fairmont Palliser fairmont.com/palliser-calgary/dining/ afternoon-tea (9 Avenue)
Photo Courtesy Fairmont Palliser
Maple Caramelized Onions
Created by Top Chef Canada contestant Andrea Nicholson, this jar of caramelized onions truly is killer. Try it in Andrea’s recipe for Caramelized Onion and Goat Cheese Potato Gratin which can be found on the website. $8.50 at Killer Condiments killercondiments.com
Send friends one bottle of wine each month, or two bottles, or four. Costs start at $25 for one bottle each month plus delivery. Kensington Wine Market kensingtonwinemarket.com/gifts/gift_ club_form.php (Kensington)
Maple Board and Cheese
Recipe Subscription Boxes
The name Janice Beaton is synonymous with great cheese. Top their maple board with a couple of your favourite cheeses for a delicious hostess gift. $12.95 for the maple board at Janice Beaton Fine Cheese jbfinecheese.com (17th Avenue)
Gurgle Pot, Cookbook Co. Whimsical and functional! These fun fish-shaped pots really do gurgle when used to pour beverages. Keeping guests hydrated and entertained, the Gurgle Pot has become the “it” item this year. $35.95 at Cookbook Co. cookbookcooks.com (11 Avenue)
Shopping for an adventurous home cook? ChefButler subscription boxes are themed around different cuisines. Each box includes recipes, spices, and non-perishable ingredients needed for a three course meal. Costs start at $35.00 for a one month subscription with ChefButler chefbutler.com
The Coup Cookbook
Handmade Walnut “Hole Slab Long” Charcuterie Board This Alberta made walnut board is almost too gorgeous to use. Handmade to order, it will surely delight anyone who loves to entertain at home. $150 at On Our Table, onourtable.ca (St Albert, Alberta)
Help friends get a kick start on their new year’s health resolutions with recipes from this popular vegetarian restaurant. Even meat-eaters will enjoy these dishes! $25 at The Coup Calgary thecoup.ca (17th Avenue)
Uncorked! The Definitive Guide To Alberta’s Best Wines Under $25 Local wine experts, Darren Oleksyn and Shelley Boettcher join forces to bring you the new addition of this popular wine guide. With tips and a great array of wine bottles you can easily find at a wine shop near you, this handy little publication is perfect for any wine lover in your life! $19.95, available at all book retailers. Carmen Cheng comes from a family of adventurous eaters. There aren’t many foods that she won’t try. She loves to chat about what to eat next on twitter @foodkarmablog.
Christmas Beer Gifts by David Nuttall
One of the joys of the Holiday Season is the variety of beers and beer-related items available. In the Beer World, this season usually starts with Oktoberfest in late September and goes right through into the New Year. The Fall beers, the Oktoberfests, marzens, harvest ales, pumpkin beers and all the Christmas beers have arrived. Gift packs are also in the stores. Most are at very reasonable prices and usually contain multiple bottles. Many contain glassware specific to the beer in the package, and some have beers which otherwise are not for sale in this market. This exclusivity makes these gift packs popular with beer collectors. The Craft Beer Advent Calendar Last yearâ€™s European Beer Advent Calendar proved so popular, production was quadrupled for this year. What is a Beer Advent Calendar? Remember when you were a kid and you received an advent calendar with 24 chocolates to eat each day in December as you count down to Christmas? Now that youâ€™re older, imagine a beer in each of those windows. This year there are 24 unique North American craft brews, unavailable anywhere else, behind each slot. There are 10 Canadian beers, 13 from the United States and one from Mexico. They range in strength from 4.5%-10% ABV, with more than half being over 5.5% ABV. Counting down to Christmas just became more fun. Retail approximately $125.
Beer Selection With Glass Trappist Rochefort 8 Giftpack - Two Rochefort 8 and two Rochefort 10 bottles from this Trappist brewery, with a chalice. $35
Some of these products are available year round, so they make great gifts the other 364 days of the year.
St. Ambroise Discovery Pack - One each of Spiced Pumpkin Ale, Apricot Ale and the Pale Ale brewed by the McAuslan Brewery from Quebec, with a St. Ambroise glass. $13 Innis & Gunn ‘Connoisseur’s Oak Collection’ Holiday Gift Pack - This Scottish brewery always delivers in time for the holiday season This package includes one Innis & Gunn Original, one Limited Edition Rum Cask and one Limited Edition IPA with an Innis & Gunn branded glass. $15
Beer Gift Pack with Glass Liefmans Rocks Box - Six bottles of Liefmans Fruit beer and two engraved rocks glasses. $18
Sampler Packs Andwell Brewing Company Variety Pack - Christmas is also the time for new beers. This four pack of otherwise unavailable beers from Andwell of Hampshire, England, has one each of Resolute Bitter, Gold Muddler Blonde Ale, Ruddy Darter Ruby Ale and King John Pale Ale. They are 500 mL each and are true session beers, all at less than 5% ABV $15 Westons Cider Makers Choice Gift Pack- Something for the cider lovers! This selection of English ciders includes two 500 mL bottles each of Stowford Press (4.5% ABV), Henry Westons Vintage Reserve (8.2%), Wyld Wood Premium Organic Cider (6.5%) and Old Rosie Cloudy Scrumpy (7.3%). $45
finally a membership that is truly rewarding
The Scotch Malt Whisky Society available exclusively at Kensington Wine Market
The Whisky Lovers Holiday Gift Guide by Andrew Ferguson
So…you’ve decided to buy that special someone a bottle of whisky. Where to start? It can be a daunting decision made even more complicated if the shop you patronize has hundreds of bottles to choose from. Whisky companies spend thousands upon thousands of dollars each year on marketing and design to lure your eye and get your dollar, but buying a bottle based purely on packaging is akin to rolling the dice.
56 • December 2013
It is helpful to know what your recipient likes to drink. Do they like Canadian whisky or Irish whiskey? How about Bourbon, Scotch or Japanese whiskies? Or are they a true whisk(e)y aficionado with wide ranging tastes? Blended Scotch, Bourbon and Canadian whisk(e) y drinkers are the easiest to buy for because comparatively speaking, the available selections are smaller and the styles are relatively tight ranging. The world of single malt Scotch whisky is an altogether different beast, this year more than 600 different single malt Scotch whiskies were sold in Alberta stores. These whiskies range enormously in style, with profiles that can be light and floral, sweet and malty, rich and fruity, or dark and medicinal. While some single malt drinkers prefer to dabble in everything, others may have an aversion to smoky-peaty whiskies, or a preference for American over European oak. And the prices range enormously too, from $50 to $50,000.00. Here are some helpful hints to help you pick the right whisky.
Firstly, take a breath; it’s a gift, and the thought that counts. If you buy the wrong type, it can likely be exchanged (if unopened).
If you can, find out what type of whisk(e)y they like to drink: Canadian, Bourbon, Irish, Scotch, Japanese or other.
If they drink single malts, find out what styles they like, or have a peek at some of the bottles they own. It wouldn’t hurt to know whether they like peated malts.
Have a budget. Good single malts under $50-60 are rare, but there is a lot of selection between $80 and $120. Higher prices usually correspond to age and rarity, but not always quality.
Visit a shop that specializes in whisky and which has knowledgeable staff to assist you: CSN, J Webb, Kensington Wine Market, Vines Arts and Willow Park all fit the bill in this respect.
To help you on the way, here are a select few whisky picks: Canadian Whiskey is still colloquially referred to as “Rye”, even though some Canadian whiskies contain little to no rye grain whatsoever. Still Waters Distillery in Ontario is part of a wave of craft distillers, and has released its first single malt (made in the Scottish style), Stalk & Barrel ($67). Though young, Stalk & Barrel is very smooth and malty. Also in Ontario, Forty Creek distillery has made quite a name for itself with a cult following that reaches across North America. Its maverick whiskey maker and owner, John Hall, released Forty Creek Heart of Gold Reserve ($65) this fall to great acclaim. Heart of Gold has a high rye content, which gives the palate a spicy-sweet edge. Bourbon is a style of American whiskey which must be made with at least 51% corn, and which must be matured in a new oak barrel. Though most of it is made in Kentucky, it can be made anywhere in the United States, provided it follows the set rules. One of the newest Bourbons on the scene in Alberta is EH Taylor Jr. Small Batch ($85), produced by the Buffalo Trace Distillery. EH Taylor is bottled at 50% alcohol and has a palate that shows sweet corn, chunky oak and some decadent spice.
Scottish Blends have gone a little out of fashion with the connoisseur, but still account for 90% of the Scotch industry’s production. While most are mass-produced, there are a handful of boutique blends on the market. One of the newest and finest is Campbeltown Loch 21 Year ($126). Bottled at 46% alcohol, it is, unusually for a blend, unchill filtered. It also boasts a relatively high malt content of 60%, and is available only in limited quantities. Fruity, complex, malty and smooth on the palate, it has an elegant mouth-feel with lovely toasted oak notes on the finish.
lovely soft toasty and decadent palate.
Single Malt Scotch is by far the largest category in the Alberta whisky market, with the broadest range of flavour profiles. If you’re looking for something light and soft, give the Bruichladdich Laddie 16 Year ($63) a try. Unusually for an Islay whisky it is unpeated with a
Tempest IV 10 Year ($90). The Tempest is matured, first fill, ex-American oak in the oldest warehouses in Scotch whisky industry, Bowmore’s storied Number 1 Vaults. On the palate it is creamy with soft vanilla, citrus, sea breeze and clean crisp smoke.
On the richer side I recommend the new Springbank Gold Medal Marketing Cask 12 Year ($105), an Alberta exclusive. Matured in a Sherry butt it has a round, rich palate with dark fruits, subtle spices and a clean maritime smokiness. Springbank’s Alberta importer, Andy Dunn of Gold Medal Marketing, is donating $8.25 for every bottle of the Gold Medal Marketing Cask to local charities. Finally for the true-blue Islay whisky drinker, take a chance on the Bowmore
Andrew Ferguson is one of the foremost Scotch whisky experts in Canada, and runs Ferguson Whisky Tours. Follow him on twitter @scotch_gu
The Last Minute Bottle by Tom Firth
The holiday rush often means we are running around at the last minute looking for a good buy for dinner with friends and family, or running through the aisles at your local wine merchant looking for a good bottle that looks good and tastes even better. Here are some highlights of the 2013 Alberta Beverage Awards (ABA) that might help you out this holiday season. These wines rose to the top after being judged over 3 days by 18 of Alberta’s finest wine palates this past summer. Most of these wines are widely available, but more importantly, drink well, pair with a variety of dishes, and are sure to impress your guests. I have no problem sharing any of these bottles on my outings and I hope that you enjoy them as much as I have. From all of us at Culinaire Magazine, please, have a safe and happy holiday season, Cheers! Tom
No Corkscrew Required
Singha Lager $14 for 6-pack Not every occasion calls for wine, and sometimes your wintertime beer should be something that harkens to a warmer climate. Thailand’s Singha lager is crisp, refreshing, and has a great little citrus nip. It was also the top lager at this year’s Alberta Beverage Awards.
Grizzly Paw Beavertail Raspberry $11 6-pack I’ll admit it, I first tried this because my wife wanted to, but it’s an impressive beer with generous raspberry fruits that don’t overwhelm the quality beer underneath. Real men can drink beer flavoured with raspberries! A “Judges Selection” winner at the ABAs this year.
For New Year’s Eve
Lanson NV Black Label Brut, Champagne, France The “Best in Class” sparkling wine at the ABA’s, it has everything you want in Champagne, toasty/brioche notes, crisp apples, and a beautiful mouthfeel. Took the top spot for sparkling wines at the competition this year. $58
Out and About
Luigi Bosca 2010 de Sangre, Mendoza, Argentina
Juno 2010 Shiraz, Western Cape, South Africa
Poplar Grove 2012 Pinot Gris, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia
Great quality without breaking the bank, de Sangre is a well-structured blend of cabernet sauvignon and 15 percent each syrah and merlot. Big fruit, lots of earthiness, and perfect both with a hearty dinner or by a roaring fire. $25
The “top value” shiraz at the 2013 Alberta Beverage Awards, it delivers quality well above its very reasonable price. Dark berry fruits with a mild smokiness and spicy finish. $16
I love this wine for many reasons, but most importantly because it’s a premium wine made in Canada that still delivers great value. Plenty of tropical character PG fans love with a long creamy feel and finish. $30
Gabriel Meffre 2010 Côtes du Rhône, France
Batasiolo 2012 Moscato D’Asti, Italy
Laibach 2012 Ladybird White, Stellenbosch, South Africa
The top syrah and grenache offering at the Alberta Beverage Awards, we love the floral notes of great Côtes du Rhône with a touch of meatiness and spice. But most of all, we love the price. $15
Sometimes you just need a wine that tastes like summer in a glass; this lightly fizzy, off-dry white is bursting with summer fruits and if it were any friendlier, it would shovel your walk. $16
I’ll be honest, I don’t think about South African wine a whole lot, but this organic white blend has something undeniable. Balance. Juicy, structured, a pinch of oak, this is a white that will pair well with almost anything. $19
Louis Bouillot NV Rosé Brut, Cremant de Bourgogne, France
Taittinger NV Brut, Champagne France
Gazela NV Sparkling Wine, Vinho Verde Portugal
Not quite “champagne” as it comes from Burgundy, it nevertheless is crisp, stylish, and very drinkable. Softer strawberry fruits complement citrus and toasty characters. It’s pink, but a real stunner at an awesome price - hence its Top Value award. $19
A wonderful classic Champagne with lingering creaminess, citrus and baked apple, and plenty of mineral characters. A go-to champagne for special occasions large and small. If you like your champagne a little sweeter, try the Taittinger “Nocturne” or enter our contest on page 14 to win a bottle. $62
Maybe you find drier styles of bubbly a little too dry and want a little sweetness in there too. The Gazela is a cleanlooking modern package, and the wine is definitely tasty with bright tropical fruits and plenty of sparkle. Exceptionally refreshing. $13
Flipping Out Over The Holidays by Tarquin Melnyk
The holiday season and cold weather sees menus everywhere return to heavier creamier sauces and higher calorie treats. Drinks incorporate less fresh fruit and explore harvest themes and spices. Eggnog is one such drink. There are many theories on the origin of eggnog, though the Oxford English Dictionary identifies “nog” as a strong ale going back to the 1600s that was often mixed with eggs. My favourite story is that since it is traditionally a drink that was made with eggs, cream, sugar and rum, the English called it an “Egg and Grog”. Grogs were named for rum drinks that often incorporated rum with spices, such as nutmeg. The Colonial English progressively shortened the name to “Egg ‘N’ Grog” and ultimately “Eggnog”. Either way, the word eggnog appears around the time of European settlement of the Americas. Rum was plentiful in the new American colonies, at a time when other spirits and wine were heavily taxed by England. Dairy and eggs were easy to obtain too, and so what once was an aristocratic cocktail became commonplace. Even George Washington had a spirit-forward
version that was committed to print. His called for heavy cream, eggs, sugar and loads of sherry, whiskey, heavy rum, and brandy!
The Norfolk Flip
Over time it became a Christmas staple. The only shame is the pre-made stuff sold in grocery stores usually has as little as 1% processed yolk and a load of preservatives. My suggestion is make it yourself (it isn’t that hard) and discover why the people who love it swear by it.
1 part Remy Martin VSOP Fine Champagne Cognac 1 part Flor De Cana 7 year Rum 1 part Spiced Syrup (1:1 Raw Sugar to Water boiled and steeped with a desired amount of cloves, green cardamom, pimento and fresh grated cinnamon) 3 drops Bitter Truth Jerry Thomas Decanter Bitters (optional) 1 whole egg 1 nutmeg seed
A favourite drink of mine is often referred to as “instant eggnog” and fits the season perfectly. This is a cocktail that I created for the 2013 Canadian Professional Bartenders Association Cocktail Challenge, where it won in its category.
Combine the fresh cracked egg and liquid ingredients in a Boston cocktail shaker. Add ice and shake hard for 30 seconds, Strain over a large ice cube in a rocks glass. Grate some fresh nutmeg on top with a micro-plane and serve.
I like it for many reasons, taste first of all. It is also a great alternative to eggnog for people who are dairy free.
Holiday in a glass.
Tarquin Melnyk is a Bon Vivant Cocktologist, Certified Specialist of Spirits, Traveller & Adventurer. Always down to try something new, especially when he can write about it.
STADIUM SHOPPING CENTRE 2B - 1941 Uxbridge Drive N.W.
(Corner of 16th Ave & 29 St. N.W.)
Don’t forget to pick up gift cards for everyone on your list!
Save Room For Dessert by Tom Firth
Decadent desserts grace many a table over the holidays, but too often hosts and guests treat it as an obligation rather than as a celebration. Think about it. After an abundant meal with friends and family, the dessert course comes around and, “would you like some (insert dessert selection here)?” The answer is either a polite refusal or “just a small piece please.” What’s wrong with us? Are we so concerned about our waistlines that we can’t celebrate with some dessert this holiday season? In the spirit of having a whole year to forget about your New Year’s resolution to eat better and lose the weight, it’s time to break out the dessert wine. Dessert wines are typically sweet but not always so, and there are plenty of ways that they can be made, ensuring that you should be able to find a match for both your palate and wallet.
Port is a style of fortified wine made in Portugal. The addition of brandy about halfway through during fermentation kills the yeast, keeps about half the sugar of the grapes, and ratchets the alcohol up to around 20 percent. Sound yummy? Its then stored in barrels for two years when it’s tasted and slated for one of several types of port. Barrel aged ports become tawny ports, while bottle aged ports have that deep red colour most expect from port. Most are released ready to drink, but tawny ports are especially tasty and versatile with everything from nutty to caramel-flavoured desserts.
Dow’s 2006 Late Bottled Vintage Port, Douro, Portugal Late Bottled Vintage (LBV) ports are some of the best port values out there. The wine is bottled late, accelerating its aging process slightly. It’s filtered and bottled around 4-6 years after the vintage and released ready to drink - no further aging required. Dow’s LBV shows plenty of lush red berry fruits, a little spicy kick, and undercurrents of herb and mint. $23
and finally, malmsey is the sweetest. These wines complement a range of food from foie gras to nutty desserts, while drier styles pair well with soups, charcuterie, and less sweet desserts. A bottle, once open will keep for more than a year or so.
Henriques & Henriques 10 year Bual, Madeira, Portugal It’s hard to find a lot of good madeira here in Alberta, but H&H has a good range available in most styles. While I prefer a drier style of madeira, bual is a great after dinner wine - plus the sweetness eases some of the oxidized and cooked notes of good madeira - c’mon give it a try! $63 Tokaji Aszú is the great dessert wine of Hungary and still relatively unknown to most wine drinkers. Made primarily from the furmint grape the grapes are heavily affected by the botrytis cinerea fungus. They shrivel up, preserving their sweetness, but losing much of their water content. The grapes are kneaded into a paste (measured in puttonyos or traditional baskets) and the resulting wine is rich and honeyed, and they also age incredibly well. Look on the label for the number of puttonyos, the higher the number - the sweeter the wine. One of the best wines with blue cheese, it’s also great with foie gras or nutty desserts, serve well chilled.
Patricius Tokaji 2000, 6 Puttonyos, Hungary Madeira - another style of wine that is made in Portugal, on the island of Madeira. These wines are virtually indestructible, as during their manufacture they are exposed to a seasonal heating and cooling cycle that would destroy lesser wines. With a distinctive cooked sugar (or madeirized) character, they have great acidity and range in sweetness from very dry to very sweet. The four most common styles of madeiras are sercial-the driest style, then verdelho, bual is medium sweet,
It may be tough to find this particular tokaji, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t look. Wonderful textures with intense citrus (loads of mandarin orange), floral, and a little rum raisin all around. It is 6 puttonyos, so it’s quite sweet, but there is still some balance here. $75 (500 mL bottle) culinairemagazine.ca • 63
and pressed in small batches. A frozen grape, when pressed, only yields a small amount of intensely flavoured, highly concentrated juice, laden with sugar. The very best examples of icewine are made from vidal, riesling, or cabernet franc, though our climate has given Canadian winemakers the skill to make quality icewine out of almost any grape. Cheese, custards, or even cookies pair well here - serve icewine well chilled.
Inniskillin NV Sparkling Vidal Icewine, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario Late Harvest is a fairly broad term to use with dessert wine. By its nature, it refers to grapes that have been left longer on the vine, resulting in higher sugar levels. Normally, for a wine to have “late harvest” on the label, the grapes are most often partially or fully botrytis affected. Botrytis is a fungus that appears on the grape skins if the weather is cool and humid enough near harvest. It looks nasty, but the fungus perforates the grape skins allowing moisture to evaporate leaving the sugars behind. Wines made from grapes with botrytis are typically quite sweet and have honeyed flavours. Serve well chilled with citrus-based desserts, or cheese. Greywacke 2009 Late Harvest Gewürztraminer,
Marlborough, New Zealand
A problem that many icewines have is a lack of balance, simply not enough acid in the wine to balance the sugars. With a sparkling icewine, the bubbles (this wine is lightly sparklingrather than champagne-like) bring a little extra balance and help refresh the palate. Flavours are lemon and tropical fruit dominated, perfect for homemade shortbread cookies. $74
Sherry is another type of fortified wine, and to properly be called sherry, it should come from Spain - not Canada, the US, nor from the UK. Sherry isn’t always sweet, despite what your teenage raid into your grandmother’s liquor cabinet may have taught you. Sherry ranges from delicate and dry (fino and sushi is a beautiful pairing) to rich, thick, beautifully sweet wines such as PX. Some cheaper sherries are sweetened (such as cream sherry) but splurge on the good stuff and prepare to have your mind blown. These dessert sherries tend to have caramel, nuttiness, and raisin pie characters. Again, serve chilled, and match with puddings, chocolate desserts, and even desserts with orange flavours.
Preserving all those lush varietal characters of gewürztraminer with rose petal, spices, and so much more, great acids bring great balance to the wine - so enjoy it, just enjoy it. But perhaps pair it up with little dessert pastry tarts or something with a little fruit. $35 Alvear’s 2008 de Anada Pedro Ximenez, Montilla, Spain Icewine is something familiar to most Canadians and it is a dessert wine made from completely frozen grapes. Canadian icewine is recognized the world over and is closely regulated to ensure that the quality of our icewine is the best. Grapes must freeze on the vine and are almost always handpicked
Raisins, figs, toffee, oranges, and so much more, this is a great example to try if you are interested in sweeter sherry. Enough acids show up to bring some balance, and it is great with many desserts, including my favourite with this wine - poured over good vanilla ice cream. $27
Are we so concerned about our waistlines that we can’t celebrate with some dessert this holiday season?
So many ways
for gift giving & entertaining with cheese...
Willow Park Village
#304, 10816 Macleod Tr SE
Open That Bottle by Linda Garson photography by Ingrid Kuenzel
Lance Hurtubise started washing dishes when he was 12, at ‘The Butcher Block’ on 10th Avenue SW, which became ‘Mother Tucker’s’ and is now Craft Beer Market. As he says, smiling, “there’s a lot of history here as I’ve been around.” Born in Calgary, Hurtubise has worked off an on in the restaurant business all his life. “I love it,” he explains, “it’s exciting. It’s a new adventure every day. It’s a great job where every day people come to see you to have a good time. Not like a dentist where nobody wants to see you; everyone wants to see you.” Did Hurtubise always want own restaurants? “I was a dishwasher who thought I was smarter than the busboy, I thought I was smarter than the waiter, and thought I was smarter than the manager. I thought I was smarter than the owner and then I realized I should have stopped at manager,” he laughs. He started Moxies in 1986 on Southport Road SW, originally as Muncys, but
quickly changed the name as everyone kept calling them Munchies. “When we opened Moxies, the big thing was how much French Fries could we put on a plate. So it looked like this great value,” he says. ”We were one of the highest volume restaurants in western Canada. We would do $54,000, which is nothing today, but our average check was $10.10, so in 110 seats we’d be doing 5,400 covers a week. It was lined up from open to close.” After building Moxies to 10-12 restaurants, Hurtubise left in 1993 and opened ‘Santa Fe Grill’, later to become Vintage Chophouse, and two Luciano’s Restaurants, which became Redwater Grill, Macleod and Stadium. “I have ADD,” explains Hurtubise, “which is perfect for this business as you can have 37 things going on at the same time and not be stressed out, and be in total control. It works out well.” Bookers was added in 1998, followed by Rush in 2008. “We recruited Justin Leboe from Bermuda, and he designed the kitchen for Rush. It was everything we wanted, but we opened a month before a recession.” “The business is constantly evolving,” he adds. “We’re constantly doing renos; at Rush we’re doing major renovations to the bar in
January, and will be shutting down for it.” He also has exciting plans for a new restaurant; the people are in place and he’s ready to go when the location is finalized. So what bottle is Hurtubise saving for a special occasion? “It’s a ‘05 Lokoya. I love collecting nice stuff, I have some beautiful, beautiful wines including a vertical of Rothschild, and a vertical of 4 vintages of Screaming Eagle – but this one was special. It was my birthday and we were staying at the Cardinale House in Napa, had just had lunch at the French Laundry and were drinking this. The host at the house said “you need to drink this in 10 years”, and handed me this bottle. Written on the bottle is ‘Drink on 60th, Brian.’ I was with friends; it was a special day.” But his pride is his 1999 Bollinger Bullet. “I’ve always wanted one and I bought it for charity at the Willow Park Auction. Only 207 bottles were made, but it weighs a ton.”
Only 207 bottles were made, but it weighs a ton.