CALGARY’S FRESHEST FOOD & BEVERAGE MAGAZINE
The Cream of the Crop:
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Wine & Beer Cheese Pairing Guides | Creamy liqueurs | Tipples from Ireland culinairemagazine.ca
LaYeR caKe WIneS AUSTRALIA
LUXURY eveRYone can affoRd®
2 • March 2013
Enjoying Great Food And Fun, 7 Days A Week
More Than A Ploughman’s Lunch…
Making Calgary An Even Cooler Place to Live
The Luck of the Irish
With food that you can eat at home, but at a level that you do not typically make at home, Model Milk is sweeping the board, winning awards nationally and locally. By Corinne Keddie
Farm was an early pioneer of farm-to-fork dining when they opened five years ago, and they have been growing as steadily as Alberta farmers grow their crops. By Cory Knibutat
Billy Friley does not accept no for an answer on any thing. Pushing through all his battles on by one, has led to Village Ice Cream’s success. By Janine Eva Trotta
Valkyries of the Knife Like the rest of the world, Calgary’s kitchen scene is still predominantly male, but there’s a number of female chefs giving them a good run for their money. By Gabriel Hall
It’s not only wine that can pair with cheese. Culinaire’s beer and cheese pairing guide explains why they have more in common than you might think. By David Nuttall and Meaghan O’Brien
St. Patrick’s Day is celebrated all over the world, and after lagging behind the Scots, the Irish whiskey industry is on the rise. By Andrew Ferguson
COVER PHOTOGRAPH Photography by Ingrid Kuenzel, with the kind assistance of linens and decorations from Inspirati, and cheese platter with accompaniments from Janice Beaton Fine Cheese. Page 3 Photograph courtesy Springbank Cheese Company culinairemagazine.ca
March 2013/Issue #9
By David Nuttall
Salutes and Shout Outs By Linda Garson
By Linda Garson
By Janine Eva Trotta
Cheese On Wheels
By Dan Clapson
Chocolate Milk Does Not Come From Brown Cows
By Heather Hartmann
Shop Small - Shop Smart
By BJ Oudman
Cooking During The Spring Break
By Jocelyn Burgener
Chefs Tips (and Tricks!)
By Cory Knibutat
Let’s Try Something Different
By Anne Gannon and Linda Garson
4 • March 2013
All You Need to Know About Lactose Intolerance
By Vincci Tsui RD
Cooking With Cheese
By Fred Malley
Mission: Mac & Cheese
By Heather Hartmann
By Chef Ray Bear
The Cheese Stands Alone
Soft, Buttery, Creamy
By BJ Oudman
The Art Of The Milkshake
By Tom Firth
By Adrian Bryksa
The Great Cheesecake Debate
By Silvia Pikal
Our Culinaire Competition Winner
By Fred Malley CCC
Find Your Own Food
By Elizabeth Chorney-Booth
Step By Step to Making Decadent Crème Brûlée By Natalie Findlay
By Nicholas Quintillan
The Humble Spud
By Silvia Pikal
Open That Bottle
By Linda Garson
By Brenda Holder
The Say ‘We All Scream For Ice Cream’
By Jocelyn Burgener
By Andrew Ferguson
Notable Imaginations By Gabriel Hall
OUR CONTRIBUTORS < INGRID KUENZEL At three years, Ingrid moved from Germany to Calgary. Hailing from architectural and design roots, she has toured many European historical sites, vineyards and breweries with a camera in one hand and most often a coffee, wine or beer in the other. In addition to a twenty-year real estate financing career, she works as a freelance photographer specializing in all the things she loves; great food & drink, the people that make it and where you find it. You’ll find her at ikuefoto.com or on Twitter @ingridkue.
< JULIA SCHRÖDER In September 2012 Julia traded the vibrant city of Berlin, Germany for a life in the Canadian countryside. Together with her husband, the German communications designer and food writer is living out her dream of being a smallholder, farmer and forager of wild foods in southern Alberta. She divides her time between raising chickens, growing vegetables and picking mushrooms, cooking, traveling and exploring Calgary’s food and restaurant scene. Her experiences can be followed on her blog LittleHausOnThePrairie.blogspot.com.
< NICHOLAS QUINTILLAN A local Calgarian, Nicholas was born into the hospitality industry. His parents created and operated several pasta houses in the Calgary area, spawning a large chain of consumer-friendly and high-value Italian restaurants. Nicholas attained a cooking diploma from SAIT, but his passion for mixology fuelled his ambition to run high-end lounges, nightclubs and restaurants in downtown Calgary. Lately he and his partners have started a consulting business to help struggling restaurants, pubs, and bars increase revenue and control cost.
Culinaire Editor Linda Garson Design Emily Vance Contributors Chef Ray Bear Adrian Bryksa Jocelyn Burgener Elizabeth Chorney-Booth Dan Clapson Jeff Collins Andrew Ferguson Natalie Findlay Tom Firth Anne Gannon Gabriel Hall Heather Hartmann Brenda Holder Corinne Keddie Cory Knibutat Ingrid Kuenzel Fred Malley, CCC David Nuttall Meaghan O’Brien BJ Oudman Silvia Pikal Nicholas Quintillan Saronn Pov Julia Schröder Janine Eva Trotta Vincci Tsui Advertising Joanne Black 403-401-9463
Corinne Wilkinson 403-471-2101
Advertising (Wine, Beer & Spirits) Keiron Gallagher 403-975-7177
For more information about some of our many other talented contributors please visit us online at www.culinairemagazine.ca.
Letter From The Editor
Only a few more weeks and it will be the start of Spring. It’s heartening to see the days getting longer and lighter, and hopefully a few degrees warmer too. There’s some notable dates this month to watch out for: March 8th is International Women’s Day, and as our restaurant kitchens are very much male dominated, it gives us the opportunity to celebrate female chefs, in particular the dynamic duo at the Calgary Petroleum Club. (Traditionally, wasn’t a woman’s place always in the kitchen? When did it change?) It’s also St. Patrick’s Day on March 17th, so we’re taking a look at drinks from the Emerald Isle, and raising our glasses to brown beverages - both brewed and distilled! But our theme for March is ‘Dairy’ and our pages are jam-packed with fascinating stories, recipes and suggestions.
Local Chefs generously share their secrets and shortcuts for cooking with cheese, as well as their favourite dishes, and cheese experts let us in on the secrets to creating the perfect cheeseboard. Our wine and beer experts are delving deeper into what pairs best with different cheeses and providing hints and tips for perfect matches. We’re also looking more closely at ‘creamy’ white wines, and the reasons why these wines have a soft and buttery mouth-feel, as well as a featuring a variety of our favourite cream liqueurs. That’s a lots of cheesy, buttery, creamy articles in one issue – and there’s more! On a serious note, we’re taking a closer look at lactose, and why many suffer from allergies and intolerances to dairy products, and on the lighter side, we’re celebrating the old and the new. Milkshakes have been a popular diner staple for a very long time, so we’re comparing notes on three of our city’s best, as well as the best in two young cheesy, creamy ventures, celebrating the success of newer Village Ice Cream and our food truck of the month, Cheezy Bizness.
their success - Model Milk, who turned an old dairy building into one of the city’s busiest and most popular eateries, and Janice Beaton’s Farm, one of Calgary’s pioneers in showcasing local producers. Talking of local, we’ve acquired an insatiable appetite for all things from within a small radius of our city, and we’ve been chatting to two new businesses to find out more about their plans and visions. ‘Localize’ and Alberta Winestein have both set out their stalls to satisfy the growing demand and support our local businesses and producers. I’d like to say thanks to the local people and businesses that support us, our talented contributors and our advertisers who make it all possible, as well as the many of you who take time out of your busy days to write to us with feedback and compliments. Keep them coming! Linda Garson Editor-in-Chief firstname.lastname@example.org
Fondue has been popular since the ‘70s and we’re lucky in Calgary to boast two restaurants that do it particularly well. We’re also getting to know the chefs at two dairy-themed 17th Avenue SW restaurants, and the secrets of
By David Nuttall
is always held the first 10 days in March and is 100% planned and managed by Downtown Calgary (Calgary Downtown Association). Share your Big Taste photos and reviews on social media for a chance to win over 80 daily prizes, plus enter to win a BC Wine Adventure. Wines of British Columbia are the exclusive wine sponsor of The Big Taste for the 3rd year running, so enjoy the ultimate dining experience with BC VQA wine pairings with your meal. Lunches: $15/person or $25/person (beverages, taxes and gratuities extra) Dinners: $25/person or $35/person (beverages, taxes and gratuities extra)
March 1-10, 2013 The Big Taste Prix Fixe Dining During the first 10 days of March, the top restaurants in the heart of Calgary will offer Prix Fixe menus of three course meals for both lunch and dinner, so that you can sample the best they have to offer at a set price. The Big Taste is an annual Calgary dining event now in its 11th year. It started as Downtown Dining Week, then became Dine Out Calgary and is now Big Taste Calgary. The dining event
6 • March 2013
Gourmet Big Taste: $85/person (includes wine pairings but additional beverages, taxes and gratuities extra). To view the complete restaurant listing for The Big Taste and view menus, visit www.bigtastecalgary.com. To make reservations, use www.opentable.com or call the restaurants directly. Throughout the 10 days there are nine ticketed culinary events planned, most with BC VQA wine pairings:
March 1 – Lunch at RUSH with John Gilchrist,
Previews (continued) March 2 – DowntownFood – Collaborative Chef Pop Up dinner, March 3 – Brunch at HOME Tasting Room with John Gilchrist, March 4 – Lunch at River Café with John Gilchrist, March 5 - Earth, Sea and Sky dinner dine around experience March 6 – Brewmaster’s Dinner at The Libertine Public House, with Village Brewery March 7 - BC Wine Dinner at MARKET March 8 - Big Taste, Big CockTails at Raw Bar, Hotel Arts March 9 – Culinary Cooking class SAIT Culinary Campus Tickets are available at www.bigtastecalgary.com
March 5, 14, 16, 19, 21, April 6, 2013 Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra’s 16th Annual Cork & Canvas Festival Now in its 16th year, the Cork & Canvas Festival is a multi-day event in support of the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra. The 6 events include something for everyone; from wine, to craft beer, to whisky. CPO musicians entertain you as you enjoy culinary creations from Calgary’s finest dining establishments. Auction items include exotic trips, rare and unique wines, original works of art and one-of-a-kind experiences.
Tuesday, March 5: Wine Tasting, 7:00 p.m. Willow Park Wines & Spirits, 10801 Bonaventure Drive S.E. Tickets: $40. Sample classic favourites and exciting new wines from a variety of winemakers while enjoying hors d’ouevres from some of Calgary’s finest artisan shops and restaurants. Thursday, March 14: Craft Beer Night, 7:00 p.m. Willow Park Wines & Spirits, 10801 Bonaventure Drive S.E. Tickets: $40 . The newest event of the festival; experience two of Calgary’s hottest new trends together–artisan beer and gourmet food truck cuisine.
Thursday, March 21: The Art of Whisky, 7:00 p.m. Willow Park Wines & Spirits, 10801 Bonaventure Drive S.E. Tickets: $40. Experience some of the world’s finest whiskys and whiskeys from Single Malts to Super Premium Barrel Selections. Saturday, April 6: Winemakers Dinner - Wine & Art Auction, 6:30 p.m. Calgary Petroleum Club, 319 5 Ave. S.W. Tickets: $195. The evening begins with a champagne reception followed by an elegant five-course dinner with perfect California wine pairings. There are also some amazing auction items to bid on–all in support of the CPO. www.cpo-live.com/main/content.php?content_id=92
March 18, 2013 Slow Food Presents Roots ‘n’ Shoots 2013 River Cafe on Prince’s Island Park Cocktails @ 6:00 p.m. Dinner @ 6:30 p.m. Tickets: $115 for members; $145 non-members, (6 courses with wine, GST and gratuity are included) This dinner is Slow Food’s annual celebration of “the transition from winter’s roots to springtime shoots”, hosted by River Café. Roots ‘n’ Shoots is a seasonal multi-course prairie dinner accompanied by stellar Canadian wines. Join Chef Andrew Winfield and his team, along with a cadre of guest chefs, while they explore the terrain of Alberta’s late-winter/early spring food landscape. www.slowfoodcalgary.ca
March 22-23, 2013 The Grape Escape, BMO Centre, Stampede Park 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. each night $65 per evening. The Grape Escape is brought to you by Calgary Co-op Liquor Stores for its members and guests. Sample beer, wine and spirits from over 75 different producers. There are also seminars and food booths to add to the enjoyment of the evening. Tickets are only available at Calgary Co-op Liquor Store locations. www.coopwinespiritsbeer.com
Saturday, March 16: High Tea in Style, 2:00 p.m. The Fairmont Palliser, 133 9 Avenue S.W. Tickets: $50. High tea and high fashion come together at this elegant afternoon affair. Tuesday, March 19: La Chaumiere Luncheon, 12:00 p.m. La Chaumiere Restaurant, 139 17 Avenue S.W. Tickets: $95. Enjoy French cuisine and live music together at this fourcourse luncheon with wine pairing and musical interlude by CPO musicians.
Salutes... We’re very excited for the start of the new season of Food Network’s Top Chef Canada on March 18th. After cheering on Connie DeSousa in the first series and Xavier Lacaze in season two, we now have three local chefs to root for. Watch for Nicole Gomes, of Nicole Gourmet Catering; Geoff Rogers, previously at Home Tasting Room and now Executive Chef of the new MARKET restaurant (see below); and Chris Shaften, formerly Chef De Cuisine at The Ranche and now opening Blonde’s Diner in Mission. It’s going to be tough competition! Congratulations to three of our featured businesses in this issue of Culinaire! At Where Magazine’s Where To Dine Awards, Village Ice Cream was awarded Best Dessert, Cheezy Bizness won Best Food Truck, and Model Milk took top honours for both Best Burger and Best Overall Restaurant! Well done all!
In today ’s busy world, you may not get a chance to pick up every issue of Culinaire. To ensure your copy, go to culinairemagazine.ca to have the next ten issues delivered right to your door. CALGARY’S FRESHEST FOOD & BEVERAGE MAGAZINE
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...and Shout Outs Wow, we’re a busy city! Surely there can never have been a better time for diners in Calgary. So many superb new restaurants opening, so little time to try them all!
MARKET opened its doors last month, and it’s as local as it gets. They believe in more than just sourcing and buying local, they’re making or growing most of it themselves in-house. The talented team of Executive Chef Geoff Rogers and Chef de Cuisine Dave Bohati have created a formidable program of baking their own bread and making their own cheese in-house, butchering their own animals, and growing their own greens and herbs in-house with Calgary’s first commercial Urban Cultivator, an internal home garden. From our recent visit, we know you’re in for a fun time and memorable dining. MARKET is at 718 17th Avenue SW, www.marketcalgary.ca
8 • March 2013
Open seven days a week from 11:30 a.m. until late.
Yellow Door is even newer! We’ve been excited for the opening of Hotel Arts’ new restaurant in the former St. Germain space, not only to try the new menu, but eagerly anticipating what was promised to be very impressive decor. We weren’t disappointed! Yellow Door has successfully brought together some very individual features in the new bright and airy space; it’s fresh and fun with unexpected, whimsical and quirky flourishes that all work very successfully together to show a confidence and flair for the unusual, Expect quality bistro-inspired cuisine with a contemporary twist, and enjoy 1oz, 3oz and 5oz glasses of interesting wines from the enomatic. http://www.yellowdoorbistro.ca Newest in Group 933’s stable of eateries, Roosevelt has more than stepped into, and filled, Classic Jacks’ shoes with their lively atmosphere and refined diner-style food. Be warned though, if you pop in for a
bite and a short visit, you may not leave till late! The food we tried is addictive – Mac n’ Cheese Sticks with Truffle Vinaigrette and Creole Chicken Arancini with Coconut Thai Curry Sauce and a refreshing sangrita, were completely moreish and although I suspect they’re meant for sharing, I’m not sure I’m letting anyone near mine! 933 17 Avenue SW, www.rooseveltcalgary.com And last but certainly not least, the very new Bistro Rouge is now open in the west at 1919 Sirocco Drive SW. The new baby of Calgary’s highly esteemed Rouge Restaurant in Inglewood, is comfortable, relaxed and rustic. With a Provencal-inspired menu, they feature a Velouté Bar - not common in Calgary bistros, but then Bistro Rouge is not your average suburban restaurant! www.bistrorougeyyc.com
How Local Is Local? By Linda Garson
All things being equal, when you’re shopping for food, would you choose to purchase a local product over one that had travelled thousands of miles to reach our shelves? A focus on local food has been a growing trend over the last few years in our restaurants, and we can choose to patronize those that feature local producers, but how can we tell at a glance which products are local when we’re grocery shopping? Localize is an Alberta company set up to do just that, and founder and CEO Meghan Dear came to Calgary recently to explain how the program helps people with their choices by identifying businesses with local and regional ownership, local ingredients and production, and sustainability. It is a result of watching her own family struggle for over 20 years, selling their fruit and vegetables at farmers markets with little or no assistance to get their produce onto grocery store shelves. From February 1, 24 Calgary Co-op stores started to display the easy-to-identify bright orange Localize labels and shelf talkers, highlighting over 400 products from Alberta and western Canada. The labels display a score out of 10 for ownership (35% of score), production (45% of score), ingredients (20% of score) and bonus points for sustainability. They also contain a QR code that can be scanned on your smartphone to provide more details about the product and how its score was achieved, including: where the ownership is located and whether they are certified for sustainability in social and human equity, or environmental or animal welfare; where the product was grown or processed; and where the ingredients come from. Visit www.localizeyourfood.com to learn more about the Localize program, see the scoring charts and their breakdown, and find a localized product or a localized store.
Production 45% of Score
Ownership 35% of Score
Ingredients 20% of Score
Sustainability Bonus Points
The Localize Score for Alberta to indicate ‘how local’ a product is. The score makes sure that a product’s claim to local is a true regional story, and not just a marketing ploy.
Ask Culinaire: Assembling the Perfect Cheese Board Janine Eva Trotta asked Adrian and Carie Lee Watters of Springbank Cheese Company for their help and advice to create the perfect cheese board. Wine and cheese parties rank high on the totem pole of fabulous and interactive evenings with friends, but how does one really wow a crowd with an array of cheese that both titillates the palate and looks fabulous in presentation? Are there particular garnishes or sides one should incorporate that will enhance the tasting experience?
We favour serving cheese in large pieces or cut once or twice using different angles to create more visual appeal. The larger piece presentation also helps to keep the cheese fresher for longer periods of time while entertaining. Space the pieces out to provide room for your guests to slice the cheese, and for the accents you may wish to include.
Mix it up but always include your favourites.
Enhance presentation with labels.
An exciting cheese board is created with a variety of textures, milk sources and colour. Include a cheese with a great story like Morbier, Le 1608 Charlevoix or Roquefort, or something unusual like Le Cendrillon, Langres or Huntsman. Venture to include an outstanding blue like St. Agur from France that will both satiate the blue lovers and provide mid-range blue intensity with a heavenly creamy texture to those new to blues.
Cheese labels can be as simple as a folded card including the cheese name, writing in chalk on a slate board, or a fancier porcelain cheese tag. Another fun idea is to create information cards that include the name of the cheese, country of origin, and a suggested pairing of wine, beer or scotch. Your guests will love the ability to use this information for their future cheese enjoyment.
Plan for volume and shape. An odd number of cheeses creates optimal presentation. For an intimate gathering of a few friends, three is a great number. For a larger crowd using five cheese types or more will work well. If planning a light appetizer provide 30g per person, while for a wine and cheese aim for for 90g per person.
Select the right platter and accents. Your platter choice may be a dinner plate from your collection, a cutting board, a mirror, slate board or a specially cut tile slab. Whichever you select, dress it up with some of your favourite nuts and dried fruit such as cranberries with maple syrup or the fabulous Mission figs. Grapes and pears are great choices as well. For some tasty diversity add fancy olives and charcuterie. Quality dried-cured meats such as salami, chimney sticks, or landjaeger are some of our favourites. As for crackers, provide a selection of both plain and artisan styles for your guests. The plain crackers will allow a pleasant, neutral platform on which to showcase the cheese, while an artisan variety, such as the incredibly popular Wine Biscuits out of New York or the Pure Indulgence Flats from Calgary, present a fun and flavourful alternative. Remember, there are no strict rules here but one: have FUN!
If you have a question regarding anything related to dining, beverages, events, cooking and ingredients, our experts are here with answers.
Photograph courtesy Springbank Cheese Company.
10 • JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2013 10 • JANUARY/FEBRUARY March 2013 2013
Visit us at culinairemagazine.ca, click on “Contact Us” and ask away! We hope to hear from you soon!
Cheese On Wheels: Cheezy Bizness By Dan Clapson
Whether you’re seven years old or seventy, everyone’s got a soft spot in their heart for a warm, crispy on the outside, gooey on the inside, grilled cheese sandwich - even just typing that sentence makes me hungry. Now, we all know that just about anybody can whip up a sandwich like this at home. But, as comforting (and frighteningly unnatural) as Velveeta cheese between two pieces of toasted white bread can be, there is something much, much more fulfilling driving down the streets of Calgary: Cheezy Bizness. Calgary’s first grilled cheese joint-on-wheels joined the ever-growing family of food trucks in May of 2012 and, since then, has been serving up one-of-a-kind sandwiches to long lines of hungry folks. “The creativity is limitless with grilled cheese, which was appealing as I love to experiment and try new things. I also love feeding people comfort food that they crave.” says Cheezy’s owner, Nicole Fewell, on why she went with a cheese focus for her edible medium. “Cheezy Bizness was a name I came up with after brainstorming. I liked that it didn’t necessarily have to be [solely] grilled cheese. Initially, one of my ideas was to also do other ‘cheezy’ things like fondue.” With multiple pizza trucks, burger trucks and other ‘duplicates’ popping up, it is somewhat surprising that we haven’t seen
another grilled cheese truck enter the local food truck circle, but with Cheezy’s popularity, they’d have to be able to put up one hell of a fight to take Nicole’s business. Where Fewell excels is in the details, from curing her own pastrami to making her own kimchi, she ensures what the truck team is grilling up for you is nothing but quality. There is a large amount of love put into each sandwich offered up on Fewell’s menu. As a result, Cheezy Bizness has quickly made a name for itself and, as a result, has risen to the cream of crop in Calgary’s food truck scene. Some might assume that prepping for a full day of flipping grilled cheese sandwiches is a walk in the park? Well, it certainly is not. Like anything that’s of quality - and deliciousness - in this world, some hard work is required! “During the busiest months it takes about 3 hours a day to prep before a service.” explains Nicole, “An ongoing joke is that our Aloha Arkansas sandwich (pulled
pork with pineapple and smoked cheddar) is an 8 hour grilled cheese because it’s an hour to prep, six hours to slow-cook, and an hour to pull.” All of Nicole and her team’s dedication has not gone unnoticed as this past January, the truck took top spot as Calgary’s ‘Best Food Truck’ in Where Magazine’s ‘Where to Dine’ 2012 awards. “This has been an incredible first season for Cheezy Bizness. The response from our guests has been amazing. Almost everyday someone says, ‘This is the best grilled cheese I’ve ever had in my life!’ which is incredibly rewarding and why we do what we do.” she says. “I’m super proud to be a part of the world class food culture in Calgary.” So, looking towards the warm spring and summer months (thankfully) swiftly approaching, Fewell is planning to add some new menu items onto the Cheezy Bizness roster. “I’ve always planned to do some desserts. Nutella cream cheese tarts with maldon salt are definitely something I will start serving this year.” Well, we’ll be the first in line! Stay up-to-date with Nicole Fewell and the goodness that is Cheezy Bizness by following them on twitter, @cheezybiz, or checking out the web site, cheezybizness.com!
Chocolate Milk Does Not Come From Brown Cows (and other things children should know)
By Heather Hartmann
12 â€˘ March 2013
Sometimes I worry about the future of society – the next generation. The more removed the average citizen becomes from farming and agriculture, the more disconnected they become from the origins of their food. Laugh all you want, but if we’re not careful, before you know it we’re going to have an entire generation growing up thinking that chocolate milk comes from brown cows.
But, while the ‘urbanization’ of future generations might be inevitable, ignorance of agriculture doesn’t have to be. Enter Alberta Milk, the non-profit that represents all the province’s licensed dairy producers. Through their educational efforts, targeted at both children and adults, people can learn a lot more about milk than just that it is the same colour regardless of the cow. Given the importance of establishing good eating habits in childhood, the majority of Alberta Milk’s programs are targeted at youth. Probably most visible is the “Never Stop. Milk™” campaign, but their registered dieticians also plan and execute a number of school programs, ranging from kindergarten through high school. For those of us a little longer in the tooth, they offer nutritional information and recipes at moreaboutmilk.
In addition to their educational and consumer resources, Alberta Milk is also a regulator. Bigger than a breed association (think Holstein or Jersey cows), Alberta Milk represents the individual producers, regardless of breed. All dairy cow owners (with the exception of those who produce less than 50 L of milk/day) are governed by Alberta Milk and its standards.
quality, safe product. Milk is highly regulated so we ensure that milk coming from the farm is within Health Canada and provincial regulations and standards for bacteria counts, water and inhibitors. This milk is inspected and sampled before it is picked up on the farm through our licensed bulk milk graders, then is tested at the processing plant. Any milk that does not pass inspections is discarded.” The 100% Canadian Milk symbol on a container of dairy signifies that the product within is from Canada’s dairy farms.
Due to a nationally executed supply-management marketing system, “virtually all of the milk produced in Canada stays in Canada” says Karlee Conway, Corporate Communications Coordinator. “Alberta Milk and the Canadian dairy industry guarantee a consumer a high
So if you’re afraid your kids might be growing up the kind that that believe milk originates in cartons, Alberta Milk has the information to set them straight. While you’re at it, you may as well help yourself to some of their recipes and nutritional info to benefit the entire family.
com and its ‘creamy’ sister site, anydaymagic.ca, as well as weekly food and recipe blogs at easytastyhealthy.ca. For health and fitness professionals they have a Nutrition File Seminar and Newsletters at nourishmovethrive.com.
Shop Small – Shop Smart! By BJ Oudman
It’s a fact - a moderate amount of alcohol does make you smarter. Polyphenols in red wine relax blood vessels, increasing blood and oxygen to the brain, stimulating activity. Research from the Federation of Associations in Behavioural & Brain Sciences states alcohol helps access remote ideas - ideas that develop through association, not linear analysis - stimulating creativity. Creative thoughts are what were behind the launch of Alberta Winestein. When I first saw the logo, it piqued my interest; the whimsical moniker represents the collective genius minds with downplayed seriousness. Founder Guillaume Bedard shares two catalysts for the business that began as an idea two years ago. The first was ease for the consumer. A busy entrepreneur with a focus on business development and invested observer of
the food industry who loved good wine, he lacked time to visit all the boutiques and stay on top of what was new in the market. With Alberta’s fortunate position of having access to so many great products due to its privatized structure, and entrepreneurs having the passion to go and source not only quality wines, but meat and cheese too, also came the challenge for the consumer to go physically and buy things off of the “bunny trail”. The second catalyst was to protect and promote these boutique retailers. So was born Winestein - creative geniuses working together as one platform to supply products from multiple retailers using a single website, e-commerce and delivery system. Bedard explains he chose the first core group of partners based on relationships, quality products and their inspiration to serve customers. Each offers specific products - anything from six wines - two feature and two discovery packs - to cheese and meat packages. Current partners include Metrovino, J Webb, Richmond Hill Wines, Bin 905, Janice Beaton cheese and Canadian Rocky Mountain Ranch/at Home Specialty Market. Each retailer has a chance to be highlighted weekly with their new offerings, keeping the website fresh. The benefits of Winestein over other options such as wine clubs and direct on-line retailer purchase are no initiation fees and the ability to shop from more than one retailer on one site. Buying from one store can be perfect for one consumer, but they are then subject to that store’s inventory and bias. “We all buy from someone”, Guillaume explains - “why not a lot of voices in one spot?” As for cost, expect to pay ten to fifteen percent less than retail, including delivery. The reason? Volume and relationships. E-commerce and marketing are costly - something stores need the sales to justify; this collaboration allows it. Bedard emphasizes that this venture is not about him. “We
14 • March 2013
are not extraordinary. We are only standing on the shoulders of thought leaders and facilitating their voice. We are not special the boutiques are”. Preservation of the small independent business model is a focus he is passionate about and to act as a platform for the boutiques is the key mandate. With many large surface retailers increasing their presence in wine sales, the timing is critical to protect the boutiques. Small business is a backbone of the economy and affords us quality of life - bringing us special products and even more importantly, experiences to accompany them. Bedard brings to the table a mild level of competition between retailers, but also a level of scrutiny via governance and direction. Not only about the retailers, it is also about the Alberta Winestein team, which includes Jean-Paul - creative designer/ communications, Crystal- consumer experience, Sebastian -IT sommelier, and Sergio-web editing. There are also contract creative writers - and when you visit the site at www. albertawinestein.com, you can see the team’s work! The current website is only the initial offering; many services are in the works including more packages, specific single items, promotion for tasting classes, and a blog section powered by experts in the fields. The vision for the company is growing. Currently only in Calgary, the intention is to expand to other key centres across Canada. First on the list is Edmonton, with retailers already lined up. Bedard suggests six to ten retailers per large city will fulfill the online demands of consumers. Winestein was the finalist of Venture Alberta’s Angels Base Camp in January 2013. Quick not to take credit himself (although awarded Entrepreneur of the Month at the same time), Bedard emphasizes the benefit of that exposure goes to all the partners, raising awareness in the media, the province and hopefully from the wallets of consumers.
Discover cooking during spring break! By Jocelyn Burgener Staying in town for the holidays? Why not plan a few home cooking classes with your kids. Instead of blaming the family dog, the kids can actually eat their own homework! With school out, spring break is an ideal time to introduce children to cooking, with a few basics in food preparation and a little nutritional information on the side. Cooking is an important skill set, less expensive than hockey lessons, and doesn’t require carpooling. Choose a few hours over the course of the holidays, keep it simple and watch them grow! Cooking is a unique contact sport. It needs a game plan, like having the necessary ingredients and utensils. Cooking is both a social and educational activity. Some of the skills associated with following a recipe include, sequencing, accuracy, numeracy, and literacy. Start with simple recipes and clear instructions. Practice by preparing two or three different vegetables, or salads. Try making scrambled eggs one day and French toast the next. Choose from a wide range of cookbooks suitable for all ages, as well as online resources. Focus on nutrition, the care and use of utensils, presentation, or get full marks for just hanging together. Selecting a cookbook or choosing a specific recipe can set the tone for your cooking class. The important thing is to show your kids that they can learn to cook! For fun try:
Kabobs for Kids, by Janna DeVore: Try meals on a stick good for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Publisher: Gibbs Smith. 2012 CDN $16.00 For experience try:
You Can Cook, by Annabel Karmel: Step by step instructions with a focus on technique. DK Publishing Inc. 2010 CDN $16.60 Make your kitchen a second classroom and enjoy spring break. culinairemagazine.ca
Chefs’ Tips (and Tricks!) By Saronn Pov Phototgraph courtesy of springbank cheese company
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JP Pedhirney, Executive Chef, Muse Restaurant and Lounge JP is on the move. From a very successful stint at Rouge restaurant, he recently stepped into the driver’s seat at Muse Restaurant and Lounge. Son of a great Ukrainian home chef, his mother, he is known for constantly expanding his culinary skills. He may be found carving a pig or creating an adventurous dish like the one below.
Fried Halloumi with marinated tomatoes, herbs, pistachio and balsamic Serves 2
175 g Halloumi Cheese
Chef’s Tip: “Try using high-point melting cheese (Queso Fresco, Halloumi, Ricotta and Feta). It’s fast, easy to make in a Teflon pan and elevates any dish to something special. Yet it only takes a minute to make! Why not do it more at home? Toss in salads, over a baguette or any dish you like.”
For the tomato marinade: 354 g (1½ cups) peeled cherry tomatoes 60 mL (4 Tbs) olive oil 60 mL (4 Tbs) sherry vinegar 30 g (2 Tbs) chopped parsley 30 g (2 Tbs) minced chives 30 g (2 Tbs) minced shallots 7.5 g (1½ tsp) minced garlic 5 g (1 tsp) salt Garnish: 60 g (1/4 cup) chopped pistachio To taste Fresh basil leaves To taste Fresh oregano (use dried if not available) A handful sorrel 5 mL (1 tsp) balsamic vinegar thinly sliced, toasted French bread 1. 2. 3.
Prepare tomatoes by scoring the bottom with an X, then blanch in boiling water for 20 seconds. Put tomatoes in ice bath and the skin will come off easily. Whisk up the olive oil, vinegar, chopped parsley, chives, shallots, garlic and salt. Soak the tomatoes in the marinade and refrigerate for 2 to 24 hours. To prepare the cheese, grease a Teflon pan with butter. Melt over medium-high heat. Cut cheese into desired sized pieces and line a sheet pan with paper towels. Add the cheese when the butter is bubbling. Allow the cheese to brown and then flip it and sauté the other side. Arrange the cheese and toasted bread on the plate, surround with tomato marinade and finish with pistachios, herbs, sorrel, balsamic vinegar and a dash of good sea salt.
Chef Carl Dupré, Crazy Pasta at Calgary Farmers’ Market Owner and Chef, Dupré grew up in the business of feeding and caring for guests. His family owns a hotel in rural Quebec, where French-Canadian Dupré was raised and cooked by his mother’s side for many years, after graduating from the ITHQ culinary school in Montreal. As a kiosk in Calgary Farmer’s Market, Dupré offers eat-in food, takeout and frozen entrees. He is a creative genius of sauces and loves to please his customers, preparing ten different sauces that are Italian-based, but go beyond those borders with a passion, thus the name: Crazy Pasta.
Chef’s Tip: “Don’t be afraid of heavy cream. For my bestselling sauce, I use a good amount of that beautiful rich element that we often forgo when trying to cut calories. Cut calories in other places! Heavy cream gives a texture that nothing else can match. Another great thing is the sauce is so versatile. It can be served over pasta, fish or chicken! So make a big batch and save time. You can refrigerate for over a week or frozen for a few months.”
Mushroom and Pesto Cream Sauce Serves 4
30 mL (2 Tbs) olive oil 236g (1 cup) white or cremini mushrooms, thinly sliced 125 mL (½ cup) basil pesto (use your favourite store-bought or homemade recipe) 236g (1 cup) white cheddar, grated 60 mL (¼ cup) 35% cream 180 mL (¾ cup) milk 15g (1 Tbs) parsley flakes 30g (2 Tbs) flour and 15g (1 Tbs) unsalted butter (for roux) To taste salt and pepper 1. 2. 3. 4.
In a non-stick pot, sauté mushrooms in olive oil on medium-high heat for about 5 minutes. Remove and set aside. Make a roux by melting butter and then douse with flour. Whisk for about 3 minutes. In another pot, heat the cream and milk, add the roux, grated cheese, mushrooms, pesto and parsley flakes. Simmer for 20 minutes bringing the sauce to the consistency of melted cheese (add more milk if it becomes too thick). Taste and add salt and pepper as needed. Use over pasta, fish or chicken.
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Michele Aurigemma, Executive Chef and Owner, Q Haute Cuisine Chef Michele is a Canadian with a European upbringing. Growing up in Italy, he began his training in London. Based in Italian and French fine cuisine, he travels (literally and figuratively) through many cultures seeking unique flavour combinations. Creativity is Aurigemma’s strongest characteristic, both in the kitchen and outside as he designs tiles and mosaics, paints and creates custom-fashionable hair accessories. He is known for his highly disciplined work ethic that translates into consistently exciting dining for guests of Q Haute.
Let’s Try Something Different : Crème Fraiche By Anne Gannon Recipe by Linda Garson It is very easy to make your own crème fraiche with pasteurised milk, and as it is not widely available in our market, and when you do find it, it can be pricey. So why not give it a try? The advantage of crème fraiche is that you can cook with it and it won’t curdle; whip it even thicker if desired. It has a pleasant tangy flavour that goes well with savouries in particular as an alterative to sour cream, and can be flavoured or sweetened as an accompaniment to any food. All you need is: 240 mL (1 cup) whipping cream 30 mL (2 Tbs) plain yoghurt or buttermilk 1. 2.
Stir the yoghurt or buttermilk into the cream and leave at room temperature in a jar or covered container for about 24 hours until thickened. Stir again and refrigerate so it will thicken even more.
Et voila! That’s all you need to do.
Chef’s Tip: “The milk crisps are so easy to make and versatile. The flavour is so delicate. We use it
This is a tasty way of using crème fraiche, and a very quick and easy recipe!
for sweet or savoury dishes. Home cooks can use it for soups, sandwiches, or spreads. It holds and stores very well. As you can see in the two different plates we use the milk crisps as a component of the dish, creating a beautiful and artistic presentation; roasted cauliflower terrine, and chocolate pot crème.”
Milk Crisps Serves 4
100 mL skim milk 10 g powdered milk 10 g powdered egg white 5g caster sugar 1. In a large bowl, whisk all ingredients until firm peaks form. 2. Place in piping bag with 5mm (1/4 inch) tip and pipe long tube lengths on baking parchment or non-stick mat. 3. Dehydrate at 275º F (140º C) for 6 hrs. Remove, break into small lengths and serve.
Smoked Salmon Mousselines Serves 4 100 g smoked salmon 50 g onion, very finely chopped 50 g fresh white breadcrumbs 150 mL (2/3 cup) single cream 2 eggs, beaten Black pepper 150 mL crème fraiche Large pinch dried dill 1. Finely chop the smoked salmon and mix with the onion, breadcrumbs, cream and eggs. Season to taste with pepper. 2. Divide the mixture between four buttered ramekins. 3. Bake at 375 º F for 10-15 minutes until the mousselines are firm round the edge and softly set in the centre. 4. Leave to stand for 2 minutes, then turn out of the ramekins. 5.Mix the crème fraiche with the dill. Serve with the mousselines. culinairemagazine.ca
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Have you ever had to turn down a creamy Fettuccine Alfredo or a steamy hot chocolate because you’re worried that it might upset your stomach? You’re not alone. It’s estimated that about 75% of people in the world have some form of lactose intolerance, with the prevalence as high as 90% in some Asian populations.
About Lactose Intolerance by Vincci Tsui, RD
What is lactose and why does it make me feel so crummy? Lactose is a two-molecule sugar (disaccharide) made from glucose and galactose. It is found in milk and dairy products. Lactose intolerance occurs when our body does not produce enough of the enzyme lactase to digest lactose. As a result, the sugar passes through our small intestine and into our colons intact, where healthy bacteria break it down, producing gas. Aside from gas and bloating, other common symptoms include abdominal pain, diarrhoea and constipation. Is lactose intolerance a milk allergy? No. Whereas lactose intolerance is a sensitivity that only involves the gut, a milk allergy is an immune response to the protein components in dairy. In addition to the GI symptoms, people with milk allergies may experience rash, itchiness, swelling, nasal congestion, coughing, wheezing, or in extreme cases, anaphylactic shock, when eating dairy. Also, while people with lactose intolerance may be able to have some dairy without any problems, any amount of
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dairy will trigger symptoms in someone with an allergy. Since most people are lactose intolerant, does that mean milk is bad for me? There are some people who argue that since most of us lose our ability to digest lactose after infancy, it’s a sign that drinking milk is unnatural, let alone milk from other animals. While that’s true to a certain extent, there are many food products out there that are arguably even more unnatural than milk. Also, there are no other animals who cook or combine ingredients to make dishes – would that also be considered unnatural? Milk and dairy products are good sources of protein. They are also rich in calcium and phosphorus, important bone-building minerals. Milk is fortified with vitamin D as well, and is the primary source of the nutrient in our diet. So… it’s OK for people with lactose intolerance to drink milk? Different people have different tolerances to dairy – some people with lactose intolerance have trouble tolerating even low-lactose
dairy products like cheese, whereas others can drink small amounts of milk with no issue. If you are lactose intolerant, here are some tips to get your daily two to three servings of Milk and Alternatives as recommended by Canada’s Food Guide:
Take lactase enzymes and try lactose-free milk. Lactase enzymes are available as pills and as drops. Depending on your tolerance, take one or two with meals that contain dairy. Lactosefree milk is also common, though it is slightly more expensive than regular milk and – oddly – tastes sweeter. Try dairy products that are naturally low in lactose. Due to the ripening process, most hard cheeses have very little lactose and are well-tolerated by people with lactose intolerance. While yogurt has about the same amount of lactose as milk, the bacteria in yogurt help break it down – another reason to look for brands that have active cultures! Take small amounts of dairy to build up your tolerance. It has been shown that the gut does adapt to increased dairy intake over time. Start by having ¼ cup of milk with meals (rather than on an empty stomach) a couple times per day for three to four weeks, then gradually increase the amount and frequency. You may soon find that your symptoms aren’t as severe. Focus on the “alternatives” in Milk and Alternatives. Although fortified soy milk is the only non-dairy “alternative” in Canada’s Food Guide, there are many non-dairy milks out on the market, from almond and rice to hemp and quinoa! Be sure that they are fortified with calcium and vitamin D so that you are getting the benefits of the milk alternative. Barring any other dietary restrictions, I generally recommend soy milk as its protein content also matches that of cow’s milk; most other non-dairy milks are fairly low in protein. Is it possible to be healthy without consuming dairy? There are many cultures that traditionally do not consume dairy, as well as people who thrive on vegan or otherwise dairy-free diets. However, most people who avoid dairy tend to not get enough calcium and vitamin D. Thus, it’s important to ensure that you are getting adequate amounts of those nutrients. Some examples of non-dairy foods that are high in calcium include tofu, canned fish with bones, tahini (sesame paste), beans and dark leafy greens (particularly collard greens and turnip greens). There are few dietary sources of vitamin D – mainly eggs and some types of fish – and for most of the year, we don’t get enough sun to produce vitamin D with our skin (and when we do, we’re usually wearing too much sunscreen). In my experience, most people who are not supplementing with vitamin D are deficient. The Institute of Medicine recommends that most adults get a total of 600 IU of vitamin D from food and supplements, though some doctors may recommend more.
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Similarly, if you are not meeting your calcium needs through food, then a supplement may be recommended. Of course, it’s not just calcium and vitamin D that are important for bone health! There are many other nutrients, like phosphorus and vitamin K, that contribute to strong bones; the benefits of weight-bearing activity are also often understated.
www.vineanddine.ca for more information or call Linda Garson: 403 870 9802 email@example.com culinairemagazine.ca
Cooking With Cheese— Fred Malley, CCC has been cooking with cheese, and teaching Calgary chefs how to cook with cheese for many years, and here he shares his suggestions for making your home-cooked cheese dishes extra-special! For many, cooking with cheese is melting grated cheddar or Monterey jack on some nacho chips and dressing with salsa. And everyone has a soft spot for grilled cheese; that comfort of childhood paired with tomato soup. Raclette from Switzerland and Saganaki from Greece are classic hot cheese dishes, as is the sublime gruyère fondue; all with some showy presentation built in. Cheese is that wonderful commodity that we enjoy in its natural form and cook with. Whether it’s processed slices, a snowy chevre, aged Cheddar or perhaps a tangy blue, cheese is a versatile ingredient you can enjoy at room temperature, chilled or hot. On the technical side, cheese is evaluated on its organoleptic properties, that is, by sight, smell, taste and texture. Imagine medium Cheddar: the creamy white colour, milky odour and light, nutty taste, with little sharpness due to its young age and a wonderful, smooth but firm texture with a curd-like crumble when you break it apart. If you want to get really technical, you can discuss the balance of protein, fat, calcium, moisture and salts that form a stable matrix, but I think it is more interesting that Oka was Canada’s first contribution to the world of cheese.
Once you get past the basic preparations you grew up with, it is time to substitute different cheeses for new flavours: • Use aged Grizzly Gouda or an Oka (rind too) for your next mac and cheese or just try a sharp extra-old cheddar for a burst of flavour, if you normally buy mild or medium. Stir in some flavourful beer for extra zip. • Grilled cheese sandwiches take on interest with Havarti or Emmental (Swiss); add a slice of smoky ham and some Brassica mustard and you are set. • Replace the Provolone in your next panini with Brie or Camembert and enjoy new found earthy, mushroom flavours. Add a glass of wine and it’s an occasion. Because cheese has a fat content, it is easy to cause it to separate when you heat it. The obvious first error is having the heat too high in the first place. Cheese does not like prolonged cooking times either, it gives more opportunity for the fats to separate out or the proteins to scorch. • The best method for incorporating cheese into a sauce is to grate it, so it melts quickly and completely while you stir it in. The harder the cheese, the finer you can grate it. • Hardness usually means an older, dryer, sharper cheese, so less is required. • Try adding a little bleu cheese to your next cheddar sauce; it will kick up the flavour of the cheddar, much like adding Parmesan or Romano does. And a little dry mustard or Dijon kicks it up a notch too, as does a dash of your favourite hot sauce.
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—Kicking It Up A Notch Cheese does not always blend easily into a sauce however. Broth-type liquids, even soup, are enhanced by whisking a bit of cheese at the end for a new flavour sensation. But most cheese does not mix into a broth smoothly. • You add a small amount of whipping cream to buffer the liquid and allow the finely grated cheese to emulsify more smoothly. If cream is off your diet, puree the vegetables. You can even toss in a bit of beer. • For a sublime flavour in your next red wine sauce to accompany a steak or some game, add 225 mL wine to the pan to deglaze it, whisk in 50 g (3 Tbs) butter and 50 g (3 Tbs) chevre. The butter allows the chevre to assimilate and the heat and wine cause the flavour of the cheese to explode….remember, just a bit, and a good turn of black pepper and maybe a splash of maple syrup. Too much alcohol denatures the fat in cheese and looks unappetizing. If you are cooking with brandy, whisky or some other liquor, cook off the majority of the alcohol before adding the cheese. Keep in mind that the food in the pan absorbs about 10% of the alcohol, so even with flambés, there is residual alcohol present. Fortunately, the alcohol content of beer and wine is low enough, that cheese integrates very nicely.
Think of a cheese fondue. All the liquid is white wine with Gruyère cheese melted into it. This Swiss treat is so easy to make: 1. 2.
Rub a heavy bottomed cooking pot or earthenware dish with garlic. Pour in 225 mL (1 cup) of dry white wine (sauvignon blanc) and bring it to a simmer. Stir in 450 g of grated Gruyere in stages; (or use a mixture with Emmental and Jarlsberg as well); until it melts. Some chefs toss a tablespoon of cornstarch into the grated cheese to make the fondue more stable. Stir back and forth across the pot as a circular motion will allow the cheese to form strands and ball up. Do not let it boil. Add a bit of ground pepper, a pinch of nutmeg and optionally, a shot of kirsch liqueur. Have the crusty baguette slices or cubes ready for dipping and some sliced, cured meats to round things out. Keep it warm; and it doesn’t reheat.
And some more tips: • Don’t be afraid to try cooking with different cheeses, there are so many kinds, both international and domestic to choose from. If you like Brie, try a washed rind type like Sir Laurier d’Arthabaska. • Use the rind on parmesan to flavour a vegetable soup or tomato sauce, subtle, but you get some value out of it. And the next time you grill a steak, top it with a blend of soft butter and Ermite or Roquefort cheese. • A word to the wise, if a cheese smells of ammonia, it is past its prime and best discarded. Blocks of firm or hard cheeses are salvageable if a small amount of mold forms on the surface - just cut it away to a depth of 6 mm (1/4 in.)
When we were thinking about restaurants to feature in The Dairy issue, the first thing that popped to mind was Model Milk. While not a “dairy” centric restaurant, the name, in and of itself, is the perfect fit.
Story by Corinne Keddie Photography by Ingrid Kuenzel
24 • March 2013
The building was home to the Model Milk Company established in 1932 and held the first heat pasteurized system in Western Canada. Although hard to picture now, cows used to be led into the building to be milked. The name “Model Milk” was carved in relief into the stone at the top of the building and can still be seen today. I mentioned this to a friend, and he said one of his favourite childhood memories was climbing a set of stairs on the east side of the building to enjoy its famous milkshakes and ice cream cones. Even with its deep-rooted history in the city, when the restaurant first opened almost a year and a half ago, I would often hear people say, “Where is that?” or at best, “You know, it is the old Victoria’s restaurant on 17th Ave.” While I am too young to remember the ice cream and milkshakes, I do have many fond memories of the building, from Sunday brunch with friends at Victoria’s (which is actually next door), to spending every Saturday, for the better part of a decade, dancing in side-by-side nightclubs Detour and Arena. So that’s why it was weird walking into Model Milk for the first time; I had never actually seen it in the light of day. Who knew that there was a huge skylight in the middle of the space? And yet, it still kind of looks the same. When you enter the space, there is a bar in the entry level, where there used to be a coffee counter. Up half a flight of stairs, the dance floor is now the main dining area, where yes, the huge skylight fills the room with sunshine. The stairs leading
up to the upper level and the balcony are still where they had always been, but re-built in black steel with matching handrails. The back bar has been replaced with a new modern open kitchen; no longer the place to see drag queens lip-synching their hearts out, but now setting the stage for culinary delights. The restaurant was designed to look unpolished and unpretentious, with concrete floors, exposed brick walls and just a hint of detail. Iconic Jieldé industrial lamps wrap around old pieces of barn wood to create a chandelier over the long communal dining table in the centre of the room. This unique table has a large steel beam as a base, with tabletops that slide along and can be added or removed as needed. Above the bar, old milk containers have been turned into pendant lights. The furniture is a mix of old and new, including barn wood type dining chairs, reclaimed cast iron table bases and original woodshop work tables from a school in England. An old sign from a Strasbourg wine shop is set within wood paneling with upholstered bench seating below it. Recently named number two in enRoute’s ‘Canada’s Best New Restaurants 2012’, Model Milk was one of only two restaurants outside of Toronto and Montreal to receive this recognition, the other being Borgo, also in Calgary. The idea for the restaurant had milled around in Chef and co-owner Justin Leboe’s head for the past 10 years. Having come from a fine dining background, Leboe says he was never quite comfortable in this world; his philosophy is that food and dining should be fun, without the pretense. Like a dinner party at someone’s home, with “food that you can eat at home, but at a level that you do not typically make at home.” A place where he would want to hang out on his day off: super-casual with well-executed food that is not on everyone else’s menu; where fried chicken and foie gras can coexist. He wants people to walk away and say, “I can’t remember the last time I had culinairemagazine.ca • 25
that much fun eating.” So that is exactly what my dining companions and I set out to do. Model Milk’s menu is certainly not large, but it has lots to choose from. I was told they used to change the menu almost every week (hence current iteration number 47), but soon realized that, as their reputation grew, people would come specifically to try dishes that they had read about or that someone had recommended to them. “A menu should not be about a chef’s ego,” says Leboe, “the question is not what do I want to cook today, it is what do I want to eat today.” So as Model Milk seems to have hit its stride, many of the most popular dishes, such as the Fricassee of Calamari, the Burger and Broek Acres Pig now stay on the menu. After trying the perfectly cooked Calamari, I understand why it is so popular. I am convinced you could serve it to someone without telling them what it is and they would think it was pasta. We also tried the BC Side Stripe Prawn Rolls, which were nothing like what we thought they would be. Instead, they had a surprising presentation, not resembling a roll at all, with fresh prawns and mayo stuffed in toasted thick brioche. They were simple and unexpected, and really tasted delicious. But soon I discovered a new favourite, an ingredient I had never had before - grits. Okay actually, I have had grits once before and they were so horrible I had never wanted to try them again. They tasted nothing like the delicious, creamy, lemony, risotto-like,
26 • March 2013
ground corn in Model Milk’s Shrimp and Grits. Three large prawns sat on top of the dish, along with a soft fried egg with a runny yolk that we mixed into the grits. It was so good, I practically licked the bowl. Lastly, we tried a large piece of homemade apple pie and ice cream. What made it unique was that the crust had aged white cheddar in it, as well as in the brown sugar streusel topping. I had never had this before, although I know that people often put cheddar cheese on warm apple pie. The cheese flavour was subtle but added an interesting twist to an old favourite. Model Milk is a place where you can come and enjoy the food and the atmosphere any night of the week. “After all,” says Leboe, “there are more Tuesdays in a year than there are anniversaries.”
Mission: Mac & Cheese
By Heather Hartmann
Macaroni and cheese is an iconic part of childhood. When asked, almost everyone has an immediate recollection of how they liked their Kraft Dinner as kids. Unsurprisingly, ketchup and chopped-up hot dogs figure prominently. Also not surprising is that they next instantly volunteer how they like their KD now as adults. Some add black pepper, others dill, corn, and ground beef. Like most things, men seem to universally think macaroni and cheese is better with bacon. For something that started out as a simple childhood staple, it seems like a whole lot of adults still love different, albeit dressed-up, versions of macaroni and cheese. One of the best-known in Calgary is at Forage. However, given how popular it is, and the fact that they only make it on Wednesdays approximately once a month, it was sold out the day we went to try it. Word to the wise – check the website www. foragefoods.com - and then call ahead and ask them to set some aside if you’re going to be getting there near to close. Besides that elusive version, here’s a rundown of the more prominent ‘gourmet’ macaroni and cheese trends, and where to try them in Calgary.
Style: Meaty The Palomino, 109 7 Avenue SW, thepalomino.ca One of Calgary’s longest-standing BBQ joints lets customers add any of their meats (brisket, pulled pork, smoked chicken, or double-smoked bacon) for a mere $4 surcharge to their macaroni and cheese ($13). The base is cavatappi noodles in a wonderfully creamy sauce that includes both smoked and blue cheeses. Adding the pulled pork makes the dish just a touch sweeter, but the falling-apart tender brisket makes it beefier.
Style: Old-school original Style: Lobster and/or truffle Vintage Chop House, 320 11 Ave SW, vintagechophouse.com Truffles have been a trendy ingredient in many dishes for a few years now, and macaroni and cheese is no exception. Vintage Chophouse offers two versions, one with lobster ($36), and one without ($22). Both are rich, and topped with a substantial portion of garlic breadcrumbs.
Style: Gourmet take-way The Main Dish, 903 General Ave, NE, tmdish.com For those after something a little more upscale than out-of-the-box, but who still want the comfort of eating at home, The Main Dish has the answer. Their version is very affordable, with a $7 portion sufficient for dinner for two adults. The cheese blend itself is also mild enough that children will enjoy it, but it’s saved from boredom by the heavy layer of herbed crumb topping, which is made a little zippy by pimento.
Bumpy’s Café, 1040 8 Street SW, bumpyscafe.com Bumpy’s macaroni and cheese is possibly the most traditional, like mom (not Kraft) used to make. Its simplicity is what makes it successful – there’s no add-ins in their regular version, just oldfashioned, gruyere cheese goodness, topped with croutons. For those craving a little more creativity, they also offer a daily special variety (each $9.50).
Style: Anything and (virtually) everything The Fine Diner, #4, 1420 - 9 Avenue SE, finedinercalgary.com The Fine Diner is comparable only to the Palomino in the number of varieties of macaroni and cheese they offer. The base of all five varieties (vegetable, truffle, jalapeno, (each $14) bacon, and prosciutto (each $15)) is a tri-coloured blend of large cavatappi noodles. The prosciutto version in particular is studded with big chunks of meat.
Recipes and photographs by Chef Ray Bear
“In a back alley food stand in south Tucson, I had a bowl of Mexican-inspired corn soup garnished with cheese, and I was hooked by the second spoonful. When I came back north I re-created the soup, but could not resist adding lobster just to bring a little Canada to Mexico. “
Mexican Lobster Corn Soup Serves 6, Prep and cooking time: 1 hour
Corn stock: 1 live lobster 4 cobs of corn (remove corn kernels and reserve for later) 2 stalks celery 1 Spanish onion 1 carrot 1 bunch cilantro (reserve the leaves for garnish) 2 cloves garlic 3 L water 1. 2.
Place water into a large soup pot and bring to a simmer. Add the corn cobs, celery, onion, carrot, cilantro stems, and garlic. When the stock is hot, blanch the live lobster for 3 minutes (until the lobster turns red and is no longer moving). Remove lobster from stock and cool in ice water for 1 minute. Shuck lobster and reserve meat for the soup.
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Return lobster shell to the stock for flavour. After simmering for 30 minutes strain the stock through a fine mesh and cool. Discard the solid ingredients.
Soup: 236g (1 cup) celery, chopped 236g (1 cup) carrot, chopped 1 red onion, chopped 85 g chorizo sausage, diced 1 chili pepper, seeded and diced (choose according to the heat you want) 1 clove garlic, minced 60 g (4 Tbs) unsalted butter 1 L 35% cream To taste salt and pepper 236g (1 cup) Queso Fresco, crumbled 2 limes, cut in wedges to serve on the side To taste cilantro leaves 236g (1 cup) high quality mayonnaise
In a heavy bottom soup pot on low heat, heat butter until fully melted. Add the corn kernels, celery, carrot, onion, chorizo, chili pepper and garlic. Simmer over medium heat for 5 minutes. Pour corn stock into the pot and bring back to a simmer for 10 minutes. Add heavy cream and simmer for 5 minutes. Drop in chunks of lobster meat and season the soup with salt and pepper.
Place a small dollop of mayonnaise in the bottom of each bowl, pour in the hot soup, garnish with a healthy sprinkling of cheese and a few springs of cilantro. Serve with a side of lime and a smile.
* Queso Fresco is a fresh white Mexican cheese. If unavailable, substitute a blend of Feta and Parmesan.
“With the sweetness of the peppers, apples and sultry kick of curry, this has been one of my favourite cold weather soups for years. Mulligatawny is traditionally made with either chicken or lamb and even sometimes beef. My version uses lamb. The rice and cream in this soup is what really rounds everything out, creating a smooth richness, allowing the layers of flavours to mix and mingle wonderfully.”
Mulligatawny Soup with Rack of Lamb Serves 6, Prep and cooking time: 1 hour 60g (4 Tbs) unsalted butter 15g (1 Tbs) fresh garlic, minced 236g (1 cup) celery, chopped 236g (1 cup) onion, chopped 236g (1 cup) red pepper, chopped 236g (1 cup) yellow pepper, chopped 210g (1 cup) white rice (I like Jasmine) 3 L chicken stock (lamb stock would work here if available) 45g (3 Tbs) red curry paste (you may add more if you like it spicy) 472g (2 cups) Granny Smith apple, 1/4 inch cut 500 mL (2 cups) 35% cream 28g fresh tarragon, chopped To taste salt and pepper 1 large Alberta lamb rack, frenched 30 mL (2 Tbs) vegetable oil To taste salt and pepper
In a heavy bottom soup pot on mediumhigh heat, sauté the garlic, celery and onion in butter until translucent (6 to 7 minutes). Add the peppers and rice to the pot and sauté for another few minutes. This will add some toasted nut flavour to the rice. Add in the curry paste and cook for one minute. Add chicken stock and simmer on medium heat for 10 minutes. Add the apple, cream, and tarragon. Turn the heat down to a slow simmer until rice is fully soft and cooked. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Season the lamb rack with salt and pepper. Let stand at room temperature for 5 to 10 minutes. In a non-stick frying pan, heat vegetable oil on medium-high heat until hot. Sear all sides of the lamb until nice and golden brown. Finish in a 350º F (180º C) pre-heated oven for 8 to 10 minutes or until desired doneness. Remove lamb rack from oven. Let rest for 5 to 8 minutes at room temperature before slicing in between each bone. Pour the hot soup into each bowl, garnish with a single rack of lamb chop and finish with some kosher or Maldon salt. Enjoy!
Looking Within Alberta for Fine Artisanal Cheese By Elizabeth Chorney-Booth
Despite the trend to embrace locally sourced meat, produce, and other foodstuff, when it comes to cheese, many food lovers are stuck on the idea that European imports are always the best. We love our French Brie, our Swiss cave-aged Gruyere, our Spanish Manchego. When it comes to Canadian cheese, however, the list often begins and ends with Quebecois Oka, and more often than not, Alberta-made cheese doesn’t figure into our meticulously created cheeseboards at all. All of this is a shame, since there is a growing flock of smaller-scale Alberta cheese producers who are making some truly spectacular cheese. While local cheese-makers do face some considerable obstacles in Alberta if they are able to get their products into the hands and mouths of cheese-lovers, the response is usually positive. Without a doubt, the king of the Alberta artisanal cheese scene is Jan Schalkwjk, owner of Red Deer’s Sylvan Star Cheese. Schalkwjk grew up on a dairy farm in the Netherlands where his parents made their own cheese, and later operated his own farm in Holland for over 20 years. He moved to Canada in 1995 and after despairing over his inability to find the quality of Dutch cheese that he was used to in his home country, he opened Sylvan Star to begin producing his own. Before long, Schalkwjk was winning Canadian Cheese Grand Prix awards for his Gouda. Sylvan Star currently produces about 50,000 kg of cheese per year, including several varieties of Gouda, as well as Edam and Gruyere. Schalkwjk’s Grizzly Gouda, which is extra aged to produce a rich and nutty flavour, has become a cult favourite and is readily available at finer cheese shops, specialty groceries, and restaurants
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in Calgary, Edmonton, Red Deer, and Sylvan Lake. Sylvan Star’s cheeses certainly rival those coming out of Holland and have little in common with the mass-produced cheeses that Canadians will find in larger chain grocery stores. “We have our own cows, we’re milking about 200 cows,” Schalkwjk says. “The milk is really important, it’s the start point to making the cheese. What you feed the cows and the quality of the feed comes back in the quality of the milk. If you don’t feed the cows right it affects the taste of the milk and that comes back in the taste of the cheese.” The other thing that sets Sylvan Star and many other artisanal cheese producers apart from the big guys is the use of unpasteurized milk. While the “raw cheese” label makes some
people skittish, raw cheese is aged in a way that makes it perfectly safe for most people to eat. “We keep the enzymes in the milk alive,” Schalkwjk says. “The enzymes are really important for the flavour and really important for the immune system to keep people healthy.” Despite the superior cheese made with these traditional and natural methods, Schalkwjk says that it’s very difficult for small cheese producers to find their way in Alberta. He points to provincial regulations that don’t allow most cheese producers to sell to retailers outside of the province, and the high costs of starting up a farm as the primary reasons that the province’s cheese community is so small. “The regulations are really strict,” he says. “And besides that, there’s the marketing, which is the most difficult part. When you have excellent quality cheese, there can be nobody who wants to buy it. It takes years to build it up. So many start off and they can’t survive because there’s no money coming back. And then you’re finished.” The Cheesiry is a small cheese producer located near Lloydminster that is doing well in its fight to buck the trend of small cheese producers shutting down after a few milking seasons. Owner and primary cheese maker, Rhonda Zuk Headon, picked up some cheese-making skills while travelling in Italy in 2007 and 2008 and then returned home to purchase a flock of sheep to begin producing her own Pecorino. She started selling her first small batches of cheese in 2010, took some time off the next year for maternity leave, and then had her first full milking season this past year. She currently produces her Pecorino as well as a seasonal soft
sheep’s cheese and a Camembert, all of which she sells directly off her farm as well as through specialty food stores and farmers’ markets. As with Sylvan Star, when people try the Cheesiry’s cheese, they rave about it. But once again, the issue is getting them to try (and buy) it in the first place. The fact that Headon uses sheep milk adds an extra challenge, but she believes it’s worth it. “It’s difficult to get people to try sheep cheese,” Headon says. “Alberta is cow country, so to introduce sheep products here is an education. Knowing how good it is for you, because sheep’s milk has twice the nutritional value of cow’s milk, I hope that people are willing to try it. It’s a difficult market to be in as a beginning cheese producer, but we’ve had good response.” Of course, there are plenty of other great independent cheese brands that pop up in the province’s specialty shops and farmers’ markets — Smokey Valley in Smokey Lake, White Gold in Calgary, Crystal Springs in Coalhust all make interesting varieties and there’s even an amateur cheese club in Edmonton called Cheesepalooza. As small as it is, there is an artisan cheese community in Alberta - as consumers, we just have to get over our obsession with European imports and create the demand to allow it to thrive. To find stockists of Sylvan Star cheese visit: http://www.sylvanstarcheesefarm.ca and for Cheesiry products visit: http://www.osolmeatos.com/cheesiry
Farm-To-Fork-To-Mouth By Cory Knibutat
“We moved here because of my wife’s career. Even in the States, in certain areas, it’s tougher but as a chef, you can always find work.”
Local. Sustainable. Quality. Honest. A lot of new restaurants in the last few years abide by this philosophy - and why not? Diners are more aware of what goes into their food than ever, and they seek out restaurants that support local suppliers, not just for the economy’s sake but also to guarantee they enjoy the best quality meal.
“When we came here for out first wedding anniversary, we sat at that table, (points to a small table for two by the window) and it was the first place we had gone out to eat anywhere,” Goldberg said. “We didn’t have a lot of money. We came to Calgary to get back on our feet, and we came here for our anniversary, and we had amazing food and we thought this place was awesome.”
Older, more established restaurants have tried to adopt more local ingredients into their menus as well but not everybody can make it work, as for some, the price just isn’t right. Farm, located on one of the busiest and most competitive areas of 17th Avenue SW, pioneered the idea of farm-to-fork dining when they opened in 2008, and have been able to grow their business as steadily as Alberta farmers grow their crops. “I think people were curious about what we were going to do when we decided to open the restaurant,” said Janice Beaton, owner and operator of Farm and Janice Beaton’s Fine Cheeses. “It was focused around cheese and charcuterie. We did have some main course items, but not nearly to the extent of what we have today.” “We’ve really evolved over the last couple years since Mark has been with us, and of course Pete too,” Beaton added. Farm’s General Manager, Mark Carrillo, has overseen the majority of Farm’s transformation into one of Calgary’s best restaurants over the past four years. He, and Executive Chef Pete Goldberg, have collaborated their culinary passion and skills to elevate what it means to truly support local, sustainable food sources. “We use as much local as we can but 100 percent is impossible,” Carrillo said. “I do my very best to make sure that everything at least comes from Canada, and I ask my suppliers and they do a really good job. It’s interesting to see how awareness is coming around.” “When we first opened, the concept of
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this restaurant was to be more of a tasting kitchen to showcase the cheeses and the meats,” Carrillo said. “Then it just started to transform and our dishes got more complicated, and we were just listening to what the public wanted.” In October 2010, one married couple was celebrating their first anniversary by enjoying a good meal at Farm. Unbeknownst to them at the time, the evening they enjoyed would help shape the path of the restaurant and their lives. Executive Chef Pete Goldberg and his wife enjoyed their meal and the service so much that night that his wife decided to apply for a serving position soon after, as they had just recently moved to the city looking for work. Goldberg, originally from Delaware, worked most of his culinary career in America jumping from his hometown of Wilmington to Colorado, California and even temporarily in Vancouver for the 2010 Winter Olympics. “As a chef, I can go anywhere,” said Goldberg.
Goldberg’s wife was in the midst of trying to get a job in graphic design and communications but wanted to get a serving job while she was trying to get herself established. Upon Pete’s suggestion, she applied. After she got the job, Pete would often stop by for dinner or drinks to see his wife and became quite familiar with the staff and the chef at the time. Pete, however, had to wait on proper work permits to be able to stay in the country with his wife and reluctantly went back home to Delaware for the summer months waiting to get back to Calgary. “I went back there and really honed my skills for when I was able to work here,” Goldberg said. “I was lead sauté there and I really just put my head down and worked for four months straight, six or seven day days a week. All I wanted to do was save my money and get back to my wife.” Once back in Calgary, and after being offered the Executive Chef position in the fall of 2011, Goldberg quickly put his stamp on Farm, changing all three menus in the span of a few weeks, branding it with his personality and background in hearty comfort classics. “I’ve always had an interest in cooking,” Goldberg said. “My grandfather’s from Memphis and he was a really good cook. He was a pit master and I thought it was always really cool that he was a great cook.” “My first job I ever had was cooking cheese steaks and
hoagies when I was 15 years old,” Goldberg added. “I’ve cooked everything from hoagies and cheese steaks all the way up to assisting with some extremely complex cooking. I’ve worked in all the kitchens you see on TV. I’ve been screamed at, yelled at and worked in restaurants where you do 400 covers a night.” Goldberg had never had the opportunity to command his own kitchen until he came to Farm. All the years slogging through countless kitchens across North America, working with many talented chefs, seeded a great work ethic when it was finally time for Goldberg to take the reins. “My personal philosophy is molded after a sous chef I worked with for four years,” Goldberg said. “He never separated himself from people. He mopped floors next to me at the end of the night, and he lead by example and always kept a cool head.” “I always said that if I’m ever in this position, I am not going to scream at people or make them feel bad,” Goldberg added. “I try to encourage a positive environment where people are excited about the food they cook.” With simple, honest food in his blood, the opportunity to work at Farm was quite literally a no-brainer. An open-kitchen, friendly staff, and the ability to build a relationship with customers while they enjoy hearty home-style food, drew Goldberg in as a change of pace from the manic bustling restaurants he was used to. “I obviously like the restaurant. Farm to table, and the food was phenomenal,” Goldberg said. “I met with the chef at the time and he needed somebody. I came here for the concept, I really did. As soon as I stepped in, I had already been sous chef here for a month, so I had a chance to see how this place works,” Goldberg added. In a matter of weeks Goldberg and Carrillo worked together to put a new spin on Farm starting first with brunch but eventually changing all three menus. “There are certain things in this restaurant like the Mac and Cheese that have been a staple here, just like the charcuterie and the cheese program,” Goldberg said. “Mark really gave me a good grace period with the dinner menu but I actually changed that relatively quickly.” Farm to fork dining in Calgary is more than the simple idea of cooking with local ingredients. It’s cooking with meat and produce from all over our province and even the rest of the country, that arrives on your plate with as little burden on the
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environment as possible. There still remains a bit of an educational process with some customers, as some misconceptions linger with what Canada, let alone Alberta, has to offer season-to-season. “I’ve cooked in northern California and northern Colorado where the growing season can be year-round and sometimes people don’t understand that in our evolution in western society, you’re not supposed to eat tomatoes in the middle of winter,” Goldberg said. “You just don’t. You’re eating things like cabbage and kale and parsnips because that’s what’s been stockpiled. The part that I love the most about this place is sourcing those things and flowing with what’s available.” “This restaurant has evolved, so the customers have evolved,” Carrillo added. “There’s some people who get us and some people who don’t. We don’t advertise, it’s a lot of word of mouth. Who we draw is often because they’ve spoken to another person about us and they’re attracted to that type of cuisine.” With simple, straightforward and truly satisfying food, Farm is busier now than they’ve ever been. Their entire staff, from Janice to Mark and Pete and the talented staff working for them, only want you to enjoy every bite. “We make a large effort to make it like a warm blanket when you come here; from the lighting, to the walls, the colour tones, the service,” Carrillo said. “We want them to feel as soon as they come in to be at ease and be comfortable.” “This restaurant embodies good Alberta food,” Goldberg added. “People want to be proud about being from Alberta and there’s such a great network of agriculture and food, and the quality of food that you get here is just amazing. I’ve worked in California and everything, but the stuff that comes through the doors here that the farmers are dropping off is beautiful.” Wholesome food and drink in an entirely open kitchen served throughout the day. The diner’s relationship with the food is reflected in the restaurant’s relationship with its suppliers.
Pete’s Famous Turkey Stuffer This warm sandwich is as familiar as family, and has just the right amount of everything. Remember that warm sourdough bread is essential to the final product! Cranberry Compote 170 g frozen cranberries (if fresh, add 120 mL, 1/2 cup of water) 120 mL (1/2 cup) honey 60 mL (1/4 cup) brown sugar Combine in a saucepan and cook down at a low boil until a jammy texture is reached. Thyme Aioli 240 mL (1 cup) mayonnaise
5 cloves roasted garlic, minced 60 mL (1/4 cup) thyme Mix together. Stuffing 6 slices bread, cubed 1/4 onion, diced 2 stalks celery, diced 450 g turkey drippings or butter 1 turkey sourdough bread for sandwiches
2. Sauté onions and celery in turkey drippings and butter until soft, not browned. Add bread cubes and enough chicken or turkey stock until moistened. Bake at 350º F until lightly browned. 3. Sweep the bottom slice of sourdough bread with thyme aioli and layer the shredded turkey and warm stuffing on top. Sweep a generous helping of the cranberry compote on the top slice, sandwich together and enjoy!
1. Roast turkey and retain drippings for stuffing. Once turkey is cool enough, shred by hand.
Ridiculously Delicious Kale Salad This salad is almost too good to be good for you, but it’s actually a nutritional explosion of flavours.
120 mL (1/2 cup) 1/2 cup salt 4 sprigs thyme 15 mL (1 Tbs) peppercorns 100 g ginger, sliced
Roasted Garlic Vinaigrette 60 mL (1/4 cup) garlic 120 mL (1/2 cup) basil 120 mL (1/2 cup) parsley 60 mL (1/4 cup) oregeno 120 mL (1/2 cup) cider vinegar 30 mL (2 Tbs) honey 30 mL (2 Tbs) mustard 120 mL (1/2 cup) Olive Oil 180 mL (3/4 cup) canola oil To taste salt & pepper
1. Heat vinegar, sugar, salt, thyme, peppercorns and ginger until sugar and salt are dissolved. 2. While still warm, pour pickling liquid over sliced onions. Place in the fridge overnight for pickling process.
Pickled Red Onions 2 L red onions finely sliced on a mandolin 2 L white sugar
145 g raw kale, hand shredded 115 g red cabbage and carrots, shredded 55 g pickled red onions 30 mL (2 Tbs) Italian bread crumbs Shaved Piave cheese
In a large bowl combine the kale, red cabbage and carrots. Add a generous amount of the roasted garlic vinaigrette (don’t be shy, this salad needs the acidity). Toss the ingredients so everything is well coated. Place in serving bowl. Top the salad with the Piave cheese and Italian bread crumbs.
Win $100 gift card to enjoy a meal at Farm for you and your friends! Yes, you can win a fabulous experience at Farm with your family or friends and $100 to spend! A night to remember! We want to hear about your favourite recipe or most memorable meal using cheese – was it something you’ve had while traveling abroad or something that you stumbled upon while experimenting in the kitchen? To enter, go to www.culinairemagazine.ca and click on “CONTESTS” to tell us your story. Good luck! culinairemagazine.ca
Village Ice Cream Shop Making Calgary an Even Cooler Place to Live By Janine EVA Trotta
Enter Village Ice Cream Parlour in the heart of the city’s budding East Village. The air is fragrant: freshly ironed waffle cones, a hint of cardamom, a whiff of bubbly hot fudge. Owner and creative brain behind the local cool spot, Billy Friley, has left no element of pleasantness forgotten. “I really want people to come in here and feel that this experience is about more than just grabbing some ice cream,” he says. This is accomplished with two ingredients: an incredible dairy base recipe, and exceptional staff. “Hiring is a great thing in the ice cream business – it just attracts really good young
people,” he says. “Earnest, hard working and personable.” Indeed my first trip to Village is not forgotten. The staff were laid back, zen, but involved. I sampled the seasonal flavour and decided on the mouth-watering salted caramel, made in house, as is virtually every flavour of ice cream served at the parlour. “I focus more on things I want to eat versus novelty,” Friley explains of the homey menu. “It’s more important that it tastes good than that it’s catchy, weird or funky.” This means really high quality nuts, fruits, boozy things, rich butters and spices – “these are the things that inspire me.” Ice cream is not just Friley’s enterprise, it is his dream. Literally. Ice cream dances in his head at night as both reverie and nightmare. The road to opening Calgary’s downtown ice cream factory was often uphill, though its concept came completely naturally. “One day I was sulking on my grandmother’s front door step over another business model I was working on … that I had suddenly fallen out of love with… I went inside to grab some ice cream and she had this local-made huckleberry ice cream from Montana,” he describes. “I had bowl of it and I just froze – no pun intended – and all my sorrow melted away.” Friley recalled the hit of sugar that tasted so fresh, struggling to compare it to a familiar
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brand but it surpassed every one. Then he thought about his previous experiences eating ice cream in Calgary, and again could not come up with an experience that was equal. “The next morning I woke up and I quit my job,” he says. “I spent 10 days in a café writing up a business plan.” Friley describes this creative frenzy as one of those visions that feels so right you hardly need think about it. But think about it hard he soon had to. The young entrepreneur worked 16 long months designing his own master recipe and production facility from scratch. “Taking a recipe from home to industry is like two different animals,” he describes. Friley was no stranger to frozen dairy deserts. Growing up in a family of foodies he often watched his father making ice cream, using fresh ingredients like home-grown raspberries, and creating custard bases. “We didn’t play sports or watch cartoons; we grew up in the kitchen,” he says. Converting born ability into a commercial venture was a matter of science and math, skills that Friley had some experience in from previous years studying chemistry and physics at McGill. “I ended up getting the opportunity to go and work with homogenizing and pasteurizing equipment,” Friley describes of the intimate experimentation that went into achieving his final product. “Ice cream is the
most complex product of all dairy products,” he says. “[The process] gave me an appreciation of the complexity of the food we eat.” Fear of scalding the milk, overheating the mix, a risk of the cream not emulsifying properly when flavours are mixed in: these are the challenges that one by one Friley learned to overcome. With a satisfying recipe formulated, he selected a storefront that was accessible, central and suitable to the product he was offering amid the gentrifying brownstones of East Village. “I thought I was going to live in Vancouver, Toronto or Montreal … but what was more exciting was the opportunity to help make Calgary an even cooler place to live,” he says. “People want what they find in bigger cities here now… It was like getting on board with something that was in its early stages of growth as opposed to other cities that were already at that level of cool I was looking for.” Add to that the city’s zealous entrepreneurial market and Friley’s recipe for success was complete. “People don’t look at you like you’re crazy when you want a to start a business here and that alone helps a young person,” he says. Not to mention big brains. There isn’t much that Friley likely couldn’t do with his educational background. He started out studying aerospace engineering at the University of Colorado before heading to McGill. “I decided listening to my favourite albums in space was not enough motivation to stay in space,” he jests. Sciences somehow led him into the humanities and he graduated with a degree in Latin American studies, which is perhaps what inspires him to incorporate so many exotic spices into his flavour array.
admits this is key in staying relevant in today’s culinary market he is also realistic. “That toasted coconut wasn’t grown on a tree here,” he says, indicating the scoop drenched in hot fudge sitting on his desk. Nor was the fine cocoa imported from California that gives the whipped cream based fudge its cake batter likeness. Where Friley does go local is where it makes sense. All the spices he uses are purchased from the Silk Road Spice Merchant, coffee from local roasters Phil & Sebastian, and the cookies that compose the ice cream sandwiches and crunch up the Guide’s Mint ice cream, are baked by Pretty Sweet. Strawberries are roasted in white balsamic in-house to bring out their tartness. Friley and his crew even infused and strained 16 litres of cream with house-popped popcorn to create the seasonal sensation Caramel Popcorn. It’s all about “finding exceptional ingredients” he says. From the best Jumbo Fancy Pecans in southern Georgia to the lightest, boldest maple syrup of Quebec. Several Calgary restaurants have recognized that and are now serving Village Ice Cream, including Brava Bistro, Avec, Notable, and Buchanans. As for the future, Friley plans on staying local. “I don’t know what that long term vision is yet but I’m working on it,” he says. To other culinary visionaries he offers three strong items of advice: “First, make sure you have a market. You have to have a market. Secondly don’t accept no for an answer on anything.” “Then just keep pushing; pushing through all the battles and take it one day at a time.” Learn more about Village Ice Cream at villageicecream.com.
Friley tries to keep local as much as is possible, and though he culinairemagazine.ca
Valkyries of the Knife by Gabriel Hall Photographs by Phil Crozier, PHOTOPHILCRO
In 2005, Gordon Ramsay started a campaign to get women back in the kitchen. No, it wasn’t a misogynistic attempt to throw the women’s rights movements back fifty years, but rather it was a response to fewer women taking an interest in cooking for themselves, their families and friends at home. Commercial kitchens however, are seeing the opposite effect. Kitchen Confidential led us to believe that the traditional back-of-house was a testosterone-fuelled playground of rambunctious misfits who wiped their bottoms with steaks and played an endless barrage of practical jokes on each other. Yet, in the last few decades, women have taken the helm of some of the top kitchens in the world, and created impeccable experiences in highly professional and challenging environments. Like the rest of the world, Calgary’s scene is still predominantly male, but there are a number of female chefs who run some of the top brigades in the city. Liana Robberecht is the executive chef of the Calgary Petroleum Club, and Gabriela Neda is her junior sous chef. Together they are part of a team producing meals for Calgary’s business elite. When asked about the inspirations and challenges she was faced with when she entered the industry, chef Robberecht remembers, “For me, I had never met a local female chef when I started my career. I looked to Julia Child and Alice Waters for inspiration as many chefs, regardless of gender, have done.” Robberecht noted when describing the traditional brigade atmosphere, “It was difficult to be a creative outspoken female in the kitchen, there was constant grumbling, accusations and backstabbing.” For chef Neda, who is just starting her career and recently spent three years working in Spain, her experience was quite different, “Men are dominant in the industry and I have to deal with them every day, but in my case there aren’t any brash jokes or actions. Everyone is polite even though there is pressure to prove yourself, so you have to step up and show them how it is done.”
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Although the high pressure and short deadlines in professional kitchens often create situations where people let off steam or use the occasional colourful expression, a level of professionalism usually found in executive offices, is quickly becoming the standard too. “We decided to build an environment we want to be in, we want to be respectful not only of people, but of their personal lives, of their work life balance. Respect in kitchen should always be in the forefront. However, there will always be some swearing, jokes, etc. I honestly don’t ever see that going away,” Liana says when referring to the way she and her team have shaped the environment at the Petroleum Club. Female enrollment in culinary programs all over the world has increased to near-par
levels, however there are still natural barriers to many women who want to make it a career, “Today’s women have progressed in all fields [of work]. Sometimes, they are even the breadwinners” Neda mused. “From my classmates in school; I only know a couple which are still working in the same field. Many of them go into other directions; such as family commitments among other things.” The sagely Liana elaborates, “Culinary arts is an amazing way to express yourself. With the passion for food, the possibilities are endless; I think this is an attractive trade to get into. Women have to make all sorts of sacrifices, decisions on how far they want to go and for how long. Long hours, hard repetitive work interferes with a balanced home life of relationships and marriages.“ Women have proven that they can easily match and best their male counterparts in producing world-class cuisine and are also joining the vanguard in defining how we think about what food is. Just this year, “Arzak” in San Sebastian, Spain, co-helmed by Elina Arzak, was ranked as the eighth best restaurant in the world. This epicenter for chefs and gourmands has played a leading role in innovating traditional Basque cuisine.
However, women in the culinary world still face similar challenges as they do in many other industries. In the 2013 Michelin guide, Dominique Crenn of Atelier Crenn was the first American woman to receive two stars and only one of ten female chefs to receive a star in the 2012 US guide. There are still kitchens in parts of the world where women are passed over in deference to their male counterparts. Neda was the only woman in the European kitchens she worked in, and often had to work harder than her male counterparts just to stay on the brigade. Although many like Neda are still overcoming some traditional challenges, she sums up how far the industry has progressed when she says, “I’m happy that I chose this field. As Andre Zimmerman (the sous chef at Calgary Petroleum Club) told me, ‘There is nothing written in stone anymore’.” Upon reflection, Robberecht notes, “It’s an exciting time to be in the industry. There’s so much attention and there is opportunity to achieve so much in terms of creativeness and concept. People are more interested in trying culinary, becoming educators and changing the way people think about food.” International Women’s Day on Friday March 8, is a day for women to promote and inspire not just the next generation of women, but for all of us to set a new standard where those with the determination, passion and talent to succeed are given every opportunity to fulfil their potential, and positively impact the world around them. culinairemagazine.ca
Step By Step
to Making Decadent Crème Brûlée Story and photography by Natalie Findlay
You hear the crackle as you break through the crisp shell of caramelized sugar. Your spoon gently meets the rich, smooth custard centre. Bringing the luxurious cream towards your mouth you can see the dark flecks of vanilla bean. Ahhh, crème brûlée. From the finest restaurants to your family dining table, you can achieve the same results by following these instructions.
A few general tips before the recipe: - Egg yolks give crème brûlée its rich, dense consistency. - Baked custards should be cooked slowly, at lower heat and in a water bath that comes half-way up the sides of the ramekins. The water helps insulate the custards and prevents the edges from cooking too quickly. - There are two ways to transport the crème brûlées to the oven: 1. Place a couple of pieces of parchment or a non-stick mat in the base of a highsided pan (to stop the brûlées from sliding in the water) and put the pan in the oven before adding the filled ramekins or
- In a dessert as sublime as crème brûlée the use of real vanilla beans delivers true decadence. - Once cooking is complete, remove the ramekins from the water bath immediately to prevent further cooking. - The chilling process is important as it helps to create the dense texture of the crème brûlée. - Tempering is the process of gradually adding cream to a mixture of egg yolks. This is done so the eggs do not cook too quickly and scramble. - Make sure to pour the cooked crème brûlée mixture through a sieve to get a smooth, silky texture.
2. Place the ramekins in the pan, place in the oven and then add the water.
Custards are straightforward to make. The key is to pay attention to the details.
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Decadent Crème Brûlée Serves 8 Preparation time: 15 to 30 minutes Cook time: 30 to 40 minutes Chilling: 8 hours to 3 days 1 L (4 cups) whipping cream 150 g (3/4 cup) sugar 2 vanilla beans 7 egg yolks, large For topping: 150 g (3/4 cup) sugar 1. Preheat oven to 325º F, or 300º F for convection ovens. Bring a kettle to boil and place 8 ramekins in a high-sided pan. 2. Whisk yolks together in a large bowl. Add 50 g (1/4 cup) of sugar and whisk until combined. 3. Place cream and remaining 100 g (1/2 cup) of sugar in a medium pot. Split the vanilla beans lengthwise and scrape out the seeds. Add both the seeds and the pods to the cream. Bring the cream to scald (just as it begins to bubble but not to a boil). * Added Tip: At this stage you can remove the cream from the heat and let rest for 15 minutes to help the flavours infuse. If you let the flavours steep then bring back to a scald before moving on to step 4. 4. Remove vanilla pods and temper eggs by slowly adding the hot cream mixture to the egg mixture, whisking vigorously until all the cream has been added. 5. Strain the mixture through a fine sieve into a bowl or large liquid measuring cup to make it easier to pour into ramekins. 6. Pour the crème brûlée mixture into the ramekins and place on the rack in the oven. Pour the boiled water into the pan half-way up the sides of the ramekins, being careful not to get any in the ramekins. Cover the pan with aluminum foil. 7. Bake custards until they are just set, 30-40 minutes. The edges should be firm and the centre should jiggle like jello. Carefully remove the pan from the oven and remove the ramekins from the pan and let cool. Once cool, refrigerate covered, for 8 hours or up to 3 days. * Added Tip: If you like your finished product cooler, then you can freeze the brûlées for 15 minutes before moving on to the final step. 8. Dry any residual moisture off the tops of the brûlées with a paper towel. Sprinkle the tops with sugar (approximately 15 – 20 g (1 – 1½ Tbs) per brûlée). Using a propane torch, slowly melt the sugar until it caramelizes and forms an amber crust on top of the custard.
Here are some options and flavour combinations to keep your crème brûlée repertoire exciting:
Grand Marnier and orange zest -
Add 15 mL (1 Tbs) of Grand Marnier and half an orange (sliced in larger pieces without the pith) to the cream mixture and follow the rest of the recipe.
Chocolate - Add 250 g (1 cup) of finely
chopped bittersweet chocolate to the cream mixture once the cream has reach a scald. Whisk until all the chocolate has melted and incorporated with the cream. Proceed with the rest of the recipe.
Lavender - Cold steep the cream with 45 mL (3 Tbs) of culinary lavender for one day before making the crème brûlée mixture. You can also change the crème brûlée by the kind of sugar you use to brûlée the top. A raw sugar can give you grainy, crispy topping. A maple sugar adds a subtle maple taste. The flavour combinations are endless. Make sure not to overpower the crème brûlée by bombarding the mixture with too strong a flavour profile. The essence should be well balanced and elegant.
Cheese fondue has to be one of the most delicious sharing experiences among friends. Simply translating to ‘melted’ in French, fondue dates back to the early 1700’s, with French, Italian and Swiss roots, and has now found it’s way to all corners of the world. Wonderful variations include melted chocolate and hot oil. Sharing plates are everywhere in Calgary dining establishments currently, but Fondue is harder to find. Here are two of our favourites: The Living Room and Laurier Lounge.
By Nicholas Quintillan Photography by Julia Schröder
The Living Room The Living Room was established by Jason Blackforte, in 2001. His vision was a concept with European influences to bring a new flair to Calgary, and he sought out fresh and local ingredients to serve in a warm ambience. Five years later, Michael Miller, Cliff Harvey, and Patrick Hill took ownership. Between the three of them they have a combined experience of over 60 years, and you will always find one of them to greet you at the front door whenever the restaurant is open, to which Miller attributes their continuing success, longevity and popular reputation. Miller developed his career primarily on 17th Avenue, while Hill brings premium hotel experience, and Harvey brings an influence from Ontario. He explains that most restaurants use several food suppliers, while at The Living Room, they use up to 30 suppliers all within a 100 mile radius, whenever possible, to feature the best ingredients. Chef Kevin Hill has been at The Living Room for nine years. He worked with the previous owners, and stayed on when the new owners took over. The Living Room also prides itself on “Interactive Cuisine”, a concept that brings people together to enjoy family-style dining. A must-try is one of their two signature cheese fondues for $15 per person; choose either seven year aged Cheddar fondue with black truffles and truffle oil, or a more traditional Swiss gruyere fondue, served with French baguette. You can add on hand-selected fruits and vegetables, meats or seafood to both fondues. Miller is also proud of his dessert fondue, with white and dark chocolate for a late night snack, or for a perfect ending to dinner ($21 for two people). Apart from fondue, a customer favourite is the signature steak tartar, which has remained virtually unchanged on the menu since day one. Perfectly seasoned and trimmed beef tenderloin
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is prepared tableside to your exact specifications, and is served with gherkins, Dijon mustard, capers, and shallots. It gets very busy at The Living Room when the Flames are in town, and reservations are strongly recommended. Customers come in for an early bite to eat or a late night snack after the game, specially for the very popular sharing Charcuterie Board ($36), with a glass of wine or beer. The wine list comprises 280 specially selected wine labels, ranging in price from $40-$1,100. The Living Room has also found great success with their “by the glass” program and have 10 to 12 options, both red and white, from $8 - $15 per glass. Miller is firmly behind his cocktail program, believing in passion and taking the time to build the perfect cocktail from fresh ingredients, premium spirits, and different techniques. As if the success of The Living Room isn’t enough, have you visited Anejo, their new tequila-inspired restaurant and bar on 4th Street SW? The Living Room is at: 514 - 17th Avenue SW 403-228-9830 www.livingroomrestaurant.ca
Laurier Lounge Founded in 2005, Laurier Lounge set out to create a memorable dining experience, based on French-Canadian culture. Originally from Quebec, trained Chef and proprietor Martin Maheux, imagined a concept that embodied the flavours of Quebec, and so he designed the menu based on his best experiences back home. Recently, Laurier Lounge has appointed a new Chef, Ryan O’Flynn, who began his tenure as a partner and chef in early February. Brought up in restaurants his whole life, O’Flynn’s parents owned an eatery, and his father managed the Alberta Culinary Team several times. He started developing his skills and career in Canada, and then moved to various parts of Europe, including the United Kingdom and France to further enhance and perfect his skills. O’Flynn brings his experiences and skills from Europe, especially France, to Laurier Lounge, and authenticity to each plate. He loves to work with seasonal meat, wild fish and produce. “To hold my heart to just one is impossible for me, it just needs to be fresh and seasonal,” he says. The partners at Laurier Lounge are mindful not to alienate any loyal clients, and will be appealing to new clientele too with their re-imagined approach to food. O’Flynn explains his is a signature menu, not necessarily signature dishes. He would rather have seven amazing dishes, than twenty average dishes, and he especially despises frozen food. We can expect to enjoy “Caramelized Onion Tart Tatin”, with ‘warm crottin de chavignol goat’s cheese and goats cheese espuma’, on the new menu. Maheax describes Laurier Lounge as quaint and ambient, with a unique take on traditional European fondue, characterizing it as fun, interactive, and delicious. “It is perfect to share on a romantic date, or with a group”. It is made with a “wonderful warm melting cheese sauce, and in that sauce is a combination of Gruyere DOC, Emmental, Vermouth, organic milk and a touch of cream with organic purple garlic from the farmers market,” adds O’Flynn. Although cheese fondue is prevalent at Laurier Lounge, he considers the beef fondue the signature item of the house. This dish was inspired by a fondue made by Maheux’s father 30 years ago. (Swiss fondue appetizer for two $26, Beef Fondue for two $67, Seafood Fondue for two $87, Chocolate Fondue for two $26). The wine list is specially selected to feature personal favourites of the owners, with bottles ranging in price from $35-$500. The average entrée price is $15-$35. Laurier Lounge is a unique experience and destination restaurant, perfect for a romantic outing, group celebration, or a regular dinner outing. It’s accessible to everyone, with reasonable prices and free parking nearby. Laurier Lounge is located in the historic Stanley House, home of Dr. George Stanley, best remembered as the designer of the Canadian Flag: 1111 7 St. SW, Calgary 403-228-3771 Visit www.laurierounge.com for menus. culinairemagazine.ca
If you’re craving one of Quebec’s famous contributions to the culinary world but don’t want to leave the comfort of your home, why not make your own poutine? This recipe is a basic template for poutine and can easily be dressed up with your favourite seasonings and toppings. Top poutine with anything you’d like; mushrooms, caramelized onions, shaved chicken breast, pulled pork and bacon are all popular toppings. The possibilities are endless! Traditional poutine uses chicken, veal or beef stock. Vegetarians will want to try a mushroom stock. As for the cheese, Springbank Cheese and A Taste of Quebec at the Calgary Farmers’ Market sell fresh cheese curds. They should be kept at room temperature before making the poutine.
The Humble Spud Recipe and photography by Silvia Pikal
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Poutine For Two 2 potatoes 15 mL (1 Tbs) olive oil 14 g (1 Tbs) butter 12 g (1 Tbs) all purpose flour 125 mL (1/2 cup) beef stock To taste Salt and pepper Fresh cheese curds 1.
Preheat oven to 425º F.
Wash and scrub the potatoes until clean. Cut potatoes into thin slices and submerge them in ice water. Let soak for half an hour. This helps remove the starch from the potatoes, so that the fries will be crispier.
Dry the potatoes using a paper towel and spread them evenly on a baking sheet. Spray the potatoes with olive oil. Bake for 15 minutes, then flip the fries. Bake for another 15 minutes, or until the fries are crispy and golden.
While the potatoes are in the oven, make the gravy. In a saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter and then gradually add the flour, stirring constantly to make a roux. The mixture should be smooth without any lumps. Keep stirring until the mixture is light brown, being careful not to burn it. This should take about 3-4 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat once the roux is close to the colour of peanut butter.
Carefully add the beef stock, taking care not to splash yourself as the roux will be very hot. Return the saucepan to the heat. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce to low and let simmer until it thickens to the proper consistency, about 6-8 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Place fries in a bowl and top with desired amount of cheese curds. Ladle gravy on top, which will melt the cheese. Serve immediately.
Open That Bottle By Linda Garson Photography by Ingrid Keunzel
From a very early age, Leslie Echino has spent her life in the world of food and wine. Her grandfather moved to the Okanagan from Le Marche, in Italy, after World War II; he picked fruit and made wine. He would even purchase grapes from Napa to make homemade grappa. Leslie was making Caesars for her family at the tender age of 9 or 10 although she never liked them herself, as she never The life-changer came when Leslie was drank alcohol. But she just loved being around involved in a high-speed car accident in people. northern California. She spent two weeks in hospital in Reno, Nevada, followed by 5 Although born in Calgary, Leslie has moved ½ months in a body cast. Her father lived around a lot, attending eleven different in Calgary, where he was a partner in Blink, schools and growing up speaking French, as so they flew her back here to recover, and her family lived in Quebec. In the summer in September 2007, she and her partner, of 1989 she was too young to work, but A & Andrew, took over the restaurant. Andrew W agreed to take her on. She loved earning had never been to Calgary; his long-term money and hostessed at Boston Pizza in goal was to move to the Okanagan to open Jasper, then two years in Lloydminster, as a a restaurant there, but they closed Blink for hostess and busser for $5.25 per hour, plus 2½ months and together they designed tips. the interior, based on the things they loved. They lightened it up and used natural At university, Leslie majored in psychology. It elements, with a San Francisco influence. was a perfect fit for her, she was bartending They changed the menu to embrace small and people would talk to her, so she would producers, and organic, local and seasonal serve them drinks and listen to their woes food. at the same time. The opportunity of a Leslie studied wine in position in Vancouver, Vancouver in her early as lead bartender with 20s, learning from her Cactus Club at their mentor, sommelier new Broadway and Sebastien Le Goff. She Granville location, was the has been looking to open deciding factor for Leslie a San Francisco style wine to leave university, and bar, if and when she can the springboard for her find the right premises. professional restaurant career.
So what wine is Leslie saving for a special occasion? Leslie has two special bottles that she’s can’t wait to open. “They’re two funny wines and both given to me by my dad, which is quite amazing”, she says. The big one is a magnum of 1988 Dom Perignon. It means a lot that it was given to her by her dad after her car accident, but she didn’t drink for six months afterwards, so she’s decided it will be opened when she opens her new restaurant or wine bar. The second bottle is more unusual Chateau Musar 1978, her birth year. Her father had spent time in Syria and Lebanon, and the wine has been in the cellar the whole time, fortunately stored well and still in good shape. Leslie is very excited to open it. She may open it in October for her 35th birthday, as her 40th birthday is too far away, and she can’t wait that long. She wants to share it with people who love wine, “I love holding on to it, but I just want to drink it. After my car accident, I learnt that life is too short”.
The Cheese Stands Alone By Tom Firth
Or does it? “Buy on apples, sell on cheese” was one of the first wine adages I ever learned. It goes back to grape growers, and the négociants who would buy the grapes of these smaller growers. The apples would make the grapes seem harsh or tannic, while when selling, the cheese would help the wine seem rounder or more balanced. Pairing wine and cheese seems easy - almost too easy, but there are some things to consider.
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Despite what you may think or have heard, matching red wine and cheese isn’t a piece of cheesecake, the tannins in full bodied red wines can easily overwhelm all but the creamiest cheeses or hard, flavourful cheese. If you are reading between the lines, this means that white wine is often a better match when it comes to selecting a bottle or two to complement your plate of assorted cheese. Alsatian gewürztraminer and moscato d’Asti are generally terrific matches along with sauvignon blanc and un-oaked to lightly oaked chardonnays. If red wine is your thing, look to softer, fruitier examples that are generally more versatile with an assortment of cheese. Wines made from gamay (Beaujolais), pinot noir from around the world, and plummy, youthful merlots complement a wider range of cheese than fuller, more tannic, or ageable wines such as cabernet sauvignon or Bordeaux. Before the collective gasp at that statement threatens to make you choke on your coffee, I’m going to clarify, softer, fruitier wines tend to pair with a wider range of cheese than bigger, tannic wines. It would be nearly impossible to cover the incredible range of international and domestically produced cheeses and the wines that complement them here, but here are a few suggestions to get you started. • Harder Cheese such as Parmesan, Pecorino, and Asiago can handle fuller, more tannic, or ageworthy wines. Think about wines like Barolo, barbaresco, Super Tuscans, and good quality Chianti or Chianti Classicos work very well here. Goudas also fit in with these wines. Pio Cesare 2007 Fides Barbera d’Alba, Italy I’m a big fan of barbera, and Pio’s does it with style, complexity, and with some great balance. Drinks well now, it can also age for up to around 5 years or so. My advice? Decant and drink up. $50 Altesino 2010 Rosso Toscana, Italy A steal at $17, this is a clean, modern style of Tuscan wine that is traditional but still quaffable. Definitely ready to drink, it’s also perfect with tomato sauces and meaty dishes. $17 • Depending on the ages of Monterey Jack or various Cheddars, wines that work here can include right bank Bordeaux (merlot based red blends), American zinfandels, new world cabernet sauvignon, and yes, red wines from the Côtes du Rhône and Rioja can be very enjoyable here. Though if you are a fan of Manchego as I am, you might want to pair this delicious Spanish cheese with Rioja, old world syrah, or Ribera del Dueros. Seghesio 2010 Sonoma County Zinfandel, United States
the top. Best enjoyed now rather than cellared. $27
Torres 2009 Celeste Crianza Ribera del Duero, Spain A premium Ribera at a great price. Complex, spicy, and most importantly – tasty, this wine is suitable for drinking now or cellaring 2-5 years if desired. $27 •
Whether you are someone who gets a Brie Baker for a gift or someone who gives a Brie Baker as a gift, the wide world of soft, creamy cheeses can be a wine drinker’s delight. Good brie with youthful Burgundian reds (both gamay and pinot) or new world pinot noir pair well, but so do “cheap and cheerful” cabernets or red blends. Camembert cheese fits in this category too and can also handle a little “spice” in the wine. Sterling 2009 Vintners Collection Merlot, United States Finding a good merlot can sometimes be a bit daunting. This one showcases some generous fruit, but keeps the tannins under control. A perfectly tasty, everyday glass of merlot. $19
• Blue cheese is a bit of an exception when it comes to matching cheese with wine. It’s heaven on earth with tawny ports or madeiras, can handle old bottles of red wine such as Bordeaux or cult cabs from the new world, and even zinfandel. Blue cheeses whether a Stilton, Roquefort, Gorgonzola, or even a Tiger Blue from the Okanagan, are incredible with sauternes, ports, and old bottles of cellar-dwelling wine. L. Lurton Barsac Sauternes, France It’s easy to spend a lot of money on Sauternes, but this sweet dessert wine is a perfect match with creamy blue cheeses without going into outrageous price points. 500 mL $25.40 Hardy’s Whiskers Blake Classic Tawny, Australia The Australian fortified are an easy foray into port styled wines and this tawny example is a crowd pleasing bottle to enjoy with walnuts, dark chocolate, and yes, blue cheese. $22 But the best advice I can give when it comes to matching wine and cheese is to shop at a good place for cheese - this goes hand in hand with shopping at a good place for wine too. The people that work there should love cheese and be able to answer any questions you have and be able to recommend cheeses within your comfort zone and suggest new cheeses you might enjoy.
A favourite pick of mine for modern zin. Big, chewy tannins with lush fruit and spices all around but never over culinairemagazine.ca
Soft, Buttery, Creamy... It’s All In The Mouth-Feel By BJ Oudman
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The mere thought of a creamy white wine may conjure up an image of milk gone bad to some, but to those who are fans, your thirst is only whetted. Come on, you know who you are - not ABC loyalists (anything but chardonnay) you are OC partisans - only chardonnay! White wine is often associated with being fresh, fruity or crisp. So what gives, what creates, a wine that is considered creamy or buttery? The first factor is wine varietal. Aromatic varietals such as gewürztraminer, riesling, and sauvignon blanc are typically vinified to keep them fresh and accentuate their fruity characteristics and aroma. Other varietals including pinot blanc, pinot gris and especially chardonnay can be produced in either style, depending on the outcome the winemaker wants. Sometimes the method chosen depends on the region they are grown. For example, pinot blanc and gris from Italy, referred to as bianco and grigio, are typically crisp and fresh. Other lesser-known whites that can be “butter-ized”, and some of my personal favourites, are marsanne, rousanne and viognier. These grapes are grown more typically in southern France and California. Do you see a theme? Cooler climates tend more to crisp whites while warmer climates are more able to produce grapes that can be vinified in either method.
The second factor that makes a wine creamy is fermenting or aging on the lees and stirring (or sur lie and battonage). So what are lees? In simple terms, dead yeast cells. Sounds appealing for your wine to be in the same container with something that sounds like it needs treatment with an anti-fungal, doesn’t it? When yeast cells die, their walls break down and allow compounds to be released into the wine that enhance the structure and mouth-feel of the wine. The lees are stirred in regularly (initially every few days and later every few weeks or months) for a period of time ranging from a few weeks to more typically eight to ten months, increasing the complexity and viscosity. When it is ready according to the winemaker’s goal, the wine is racked or removed from its lees prior to further fermentation or maturation. The most extreme example of wine on the lees is champagne- it must age on the lees in bottle for at least fifteen months before the lees are actually removed from the bottle. Good champagne is usually described as having a yeasty or bready aroma. The third component of making a creamy white is secondary or malolactic fermentation (MLF) - literally meaning to allow the acids of the wine to become milky. This usually occurs in conjunction with aging on the lees, as nutrients of the dead yeast cells assist the growth of malolactic bacteria. The bacteria in turn transform malic acids, harsh and acidic, into carbon dioxide and lactic acids, which have a softer mouth-feel. Another by-product of the bacterial fermentation is diacetyl, a natural chemical, which has a characteristic buttery note.
All wine undergoes primary fermentation - grape sugar is turned into alcohol by yeast. Red wines are then pressed and almost all undergo MLF. This can happen either spontaneously but preferably through inoculation with a bacteria culture. Creamy white wines are treated similar to reds to undergo either full or partial MLF to create softer, rounder and more complex wines. Crisp white wines are pressed, fermented, removed from their lees and spend time in stainless steel or concrete vats, not allowed to undergo MLF to maintain their acidity and flavour components. The fourth component is aging in oak barrels. Without the previous two procedures, aging in wood alone will not make a white wine “creamy”, just oaky. A simply oaked white wine is not near as pleasing on the palate as one having all three components and perhaps this is where over-oaked chardonnays began receiving a bad rap. Since oak is porous, a certain portion of the wine evaporates as it sits in the barrel, intensifying the characteristics of the wine already present as well as adding butter on the palate. In general, creamy white wines are good pairings for poultry, cream based seafood, pork and even other meat dishes for those who prefer white to red. These wines have the backbone to stand up to the proteins and can alter the perception of only red wine with red meat.
Have I convinced you ABC-ers yet? If your comfort zone is a grassy sauvignon blanc or a sweeter riesling, branch out. Here are a few to try: California winemakers are the most known for making whites with a big mouth-feel. Some classic examples are La Crema and Rombauer Chardonnay. La Crema is bottled at four different price points - try Sonoma Coast at $15 or the popular Monterey Coast for $28 -all are guaranteed to have some level of creaminess. Rombauer is priced at $40. Four Graces pinot blanc and gris from the Willamette Valley in Oregon (both around $31) are both good bets. Both varietals hail from France, specifically Alsace, and as varietals approved for AOC cremant (sparkling), should be a clue as to how they can be vinified. Treana, an equal blend of marsanne and viognier from California, fools some chardonnay drinkers with its vibrant stone fruit, honey and citrus flavours with a full mouth-feel and long finish. Find it for $38. Ogier Heritages Blanc ($17) from the Rhône Valley, is a blend of roussanne and viognier which provide the creamy roundness, grenache blanc giving the ripe flavours, and clairette and bourboulenc for aroma and freshness. Right from our own back yard, the Okanagan is represented by many worthy choices – Sandhill Pinot Gris stands out - a patriotic crowd pleaser for around $20/bottle. And for those with a little deeper pockets, my favourites are white burgundies, especially Meursault - chardonnay from Côte de Beaune, France; you cannot go wrong with any, but two to try are Bouchard Père et Fils ($55) or for a real treat, Domaine Leroy ($135) - if you can find it. I think I’ll go look in my cellar.
The Art of the Milkshake By Adrian Bryksa
Milkshake â€” the word can evoke so many images and memories. When I hear it, I think of the restaurant scene in Quentin Tarantinoâ€™s 1994 masterpiece Pulp Fiction. Vincent Vega (John Travolta) and Mia Wallace (Uma Thurman) joke and jive and ultimately confirm that the $5.00 shake she ordered was worth the price. For others, it might conjure up images of a diner, street corner pharmacy or soda stand where students gathered after school to socialize. While the recipe for the milkshake has changed over time, most chefs will agree that the basis for the current iteration is a combination of milk and ice cream that is dependent on desired consistency. This traditional treat has undergone a renaissance of sorts with chefs inventing and improvising to create creamy delicacies that could be described as expressions of art.
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remained the same. Since the ultimate pairing for the milkshake is the hamburger, I recommend ordering your burger Clive style — with lettuce, pickle, tomato, cheese and Clive sauce. This $7.00 sandwich is slightly spicy and juicy and provides the right amount of heat to foil a creamy shake.
Clive Burger arrived on the scene with a flourish in 2012, on trendy 17th Ave SW. It carved out its niche with hormone- and antibiotic-free Alberta beef hamburgers, peanutoil fries and custard-based shakes. Clive’s $5.00 shakes come in four different flavours: coffee, cherry, chocolate and vanilla, and the creatives in their kitchen also mixed up a seasonal eggnog shake variety this past holiday season.
Although Clive recommends only a single napkin, you’ll probably need two. If the burger and shake don’t fill you up, then share a sack of fries with your date. All in, this $16 meal will provide you a power lunch before some retail therapy on 17th, or will serve as a great way to end a night out after visiting some of 17th’s watering holes.
I selected the vanilla and was impressed by the rich custard and exceptional vanilla bean flavours. It got high marks for its immediate and easy drinkability, and even after 20 minutes, the consistency
Peters’ Drive-In Since 1964, Peters’ Drive-In has charmed both tourists and locals alike from its perch on 16th Ave NE, where it serves up burgers, shakes, fries and rings 362 days a year. The $4.50 milkshakes offer unsurpassed levels of customization. Guests can select any combination of 30 different flavours to create their own creamy pièce de résistance. You want a watermelon, mango and lime blend? Yup. Maybe you want a cherry, chocolate, marshmallow and banana? You got it. These soft serve shakes are blended to the consistency of “concrete,” which in milkshake lingo means that you can invert the shake after it has been blended and it won’t drip. You’ll need to give these bad boys some time to warm up before enjoying as you’ll collapse your straw, but they are worth the wait. The burgers come in at $3.60 and have a small-town, hockey-rink style to them. The bun has a noticeable softness and the patty is accentuated by a sweet BBQ sauce and loads of sautéed onions. The small order of fries will feed two adults and the large fries are
Fatburger I was first introduced to the idea of Fatburger in Bret Easton Ellis’s novel Less than Zero, and when this historic chain opened its first Calgary location, I was one of the first in line. Years later, with multiple locations open, Fatburger has gained a loyal following by delivering a 50s diner experience with table service of great burgers, tasty sides and delicious milkshakes. The shakes come in six different variations, including the standard chocolate, vanilla and strawberry as well as mocha, Oreo and banana. These $4.50 shakes are made with hand-scooped ice cream
No word if Clive is putting out a green mint shake this St. Patrick’s day, but my fingers are crossed.
enough for a family. Be sure to bring cash as this is the only payment method Peters’ accepts. I’d recommend skipping the drive-through. Instead, stand in line outside as you’ll be sure to meet some colourful characters while waiting to place your order.
and topped with whipped cream, adding to the nostalgic feel and flavour. The milky delicacies offer instant gratification, and my shake here was the creamiest of the three I tested. The $7.80 cheeseburgers here are juicy with loads of flavour, and you’ll need an appetite if you want to attempt the fries and shake combo. Fatburger is a great venue for a date as it has fun, slightly messy comfort food that is great to share.
www.fatburger.com I hope you are inspired to visit one of the three locations listed above or to craft your own masterpiece shake at home. The next time you are out at your favourite burger spot, skip the pop and pair your sandwich up with a milkshake as a fun splurge that might bring back some memories. culinairemagazine.ca
When craving silky, creamy, velvety cheesecake, home cooks may be confronted with a dilemma: baked or unbaked cheesecake? ATCO Blue Flame Kitchen home economist Janine Kolotyluk outlines the differences worth knowing so you’re better equipped to beat your batter! TEXTURE
According to Kolotyluk, the traditional New York cheesecake served in most restaurants in Calgary is heavy, dense and baked, while an unbaked cheesecake is light and airy.
The texture is the result of the specific technique used in the preparation of each cheesecake. The dense texture of baked cheesecake is accomplished by mixing cheese with eggs, sugar and several other ingredients while being careful not to overbeat the mixture. Kolotyluk recommends using a water bath for baked cheesecake. A water bath involves submerging the cheesecake pan into a larger roasting pan part-filled with boiling water. The moist environment results in a silkier texture and helps prevents cracks in the surface. To give the no-bake cheesecake its light texture, whipped cream is folded in at the end. While the cheesecake is creamy, it will have a more pudding-like texture than baked cheesecake. Instead of eggs, a no-bake cheesecake will often have a gelatin component to provide a firm structure.
to three days in a refrigerator. It can be frozen without a topping unless otherwise specified in a recipe. Kolotyluk said it will freeze well because it’s so dense. Kolotyluk said that unbaked cheesecake won’t freeze well due to the ingredients. The texture could change and when you thaw it out it could become watery.
“I don’t know that I would recommend one over the other,” Kolotyluk said. “Many people don’t consider an unbaked cheesecake to be a true cheesecake. If you want to impress your guests or try a traditional cheesecake you have to do a baked one.” Kolotyluk said that since an unbaked cheesecake is lighter and generally has less calories than a baked one, it would be the perfect ending to a heavier meal. In addition, it is easier to make since you don’t have to go through the process of cooking it. Whichever one you choose, she recommends sticking to the recipe. “Either follow the recipe the way it’s been tested or be prepared for some changes in the texture,” Kolotyluk said.
According to ATCO Blue Flame Kitchen, baked cheesecake can be covered with plastic wrap and stored in an airtight container for up
ATCO Blue Flame Kitchen has provided both a baked and unbaked cheesecake recipe for aspiring cheesecake bakers to choose from.
To Bake Or Not To Bake: The Great Cheesecake Debate Story and photography by Silvia Pikal Recipes from the ATCO Blue Flame Kitchen
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Unbaked Tiramisu Cheesecake Serves 5-6 1 package x 125 g ladyfingers 100 mL (1/2 cup) coffee liqueur, divided 4 squares semi-sweet chocolate 125 mL (1/2 cup) strong coffee 250 g cream cheese, softened 60 mL (1/4 cup) sugar 60 mL (1/4 cup) milk 1/2 envelope unflavoured gelatin 125 mL (1/2 cup) whipping cream, whipped Cocoa 1.
Arrange half ladyfingers, trimming to fit as necessary, in bottom of a 23 cm (9 inch) springform pan. Drizzle with 25 mL (2 Tbs) liqueur. Melt chocolate and coffee in a heavy saucepan over low heat. Cool to room temperature.
Beat together cream cheese and sugar. Gradually beat in milk. In a small saucepan, sprinkle gelatin over 50 mL (1/4 cup) coffee liqueur. Heat over low heat until melted. Beat gelatin into cheese mixture until smooth. Fold in whipped cream. Pour half of chocolate mixture over ladyfingers. Spread with half of cream cheese mixture. Trim and arrange remaining ladyfingers over top. Drizzle with remaining 25 mL (2 Tbs) liqueur. Repeat layering with chocolate and cream cheese mixtures.
Cover and refrigerate for at least 8 hours or up to 3 days. Do not freeze. Dust with cocoa to serve. Cut into wedges using a hot wet knife.
Classic Baked Cheesecake
Serves 10 - 12 If desired, serve this luscious cheesecake drizzled with a dessert sauce. 375 mL (1 1/2 cups) graham wafer crumbs 50 mL (1/4 cup) butter, melted 15 mL (1 Tbs) sugar 1 kg cream cheese, softened 300 mL (1 1/4 cups) sugar 25 mL (2 Tbs) fresh lemon juice 15 mL (1 Tbs) grated lemon peel 7 mL (1 1/2 tsp) vanilla 4 eggs, lightly beaten 500 mL (2 cups) sour cream, divided 25 m (2 Tbs) sugar 12 mL (2 1/2 tsp) vanilla 0.5 mL (1/8 tsp) salt 1.
Preheat oven to 325º F (160º C). Wrap outside of a 25 cm (10 inch) springform pan with heavy-duty foil. Grease inside of pan.
To prepare crust, combine crumbs, melted butter and 15 mL (2 Tbs) sugar, 2 mL (½ tsp) vanilla, and salt in a bowl until blended. Press mixture onto bottom of prepared pan; set aside.
To prepare filling, use medium speed of an electric mixer and beat cream cheese until creamy. Beat in 300 mL (1 1/4 cups) sugar, lemon juice, lemon peel and 7 mL (1 1/2 tsp) vanilla until smooth. Stir together beaten eggs and 125 mL (1/2 cup) sour cream in a bowl until blended. Add to cream cheese mixture. Using low speed, beat just until blended. Do not overbeat. Pour filling onto crust. Place springform pan in a large roasting pan. Pour enough boiling water into roasting pan to come two-thirds up sides of springform pan.
Bake for 1 1/2 hours or until centre of cheesecake is puffed and jiggles slightly when shaken. Remove springform pan from roasting pan; set springform pan aside. Increase oven temperature to 425º F (220º C).
To prepare topping, combine remaining 375 mL (1 1/2 cups) sour cream, 25 mL (2 Tbs) sugar, 2 mL (½ tsp) vanilla, and salt. Spread topping over cheesecake. Return springform pan to roasting pan in oven. Continue baking for 10 minutes. Turn oven off and let cheesecake stand in oven with door ajar for 1 hour. Remove springform pan from roasting pan; remove foil. Place springform pan on a rack. Run a knife around sides of pan to loosen. Cool cheesecake completely in pan. Cover and refrigerate for at least 8 hours or up to 24 hours. Remove sides of pan. Slice cheesecake with a hot wet knife. May be frozen for up to 1 month. If frozen, thaw in refrigerator. culinairemagazine.ca
More Than A Ploughman’s Lunch…
Culinaire Guide to Pairing Beer and Cheese By David Nuttall and Meaghan O’Brien
In a world dominated by “wine and cheese” pairings and parties lives the forgotten stepchild of “beer and cheese” pairings. Maybe they just didn’t have as good a press agent. In reality, cheese has far more in common with beer than wine. Both cheese and beer originate with grasses - beer from cereal grasses like barley, wheat and rye, and cheese relies on cows, goats, sheep and other animals consuming grass to produce the milk that becomes cheese. The great range of cheese varieties also has more in common with the myriad of beer styles than it does with wine. While wine pairings with some salads, soups, spicy cuisines, vegetables, desserts, and yes, even cheeses, may fail to achieve gastronomic nirvana, beer has the versatility to almost always bridge that culinary gap.
Beer and cheese have many similarities. Depending on how they are categorized, there are around 1000 varieties of cheese, not unlike beer. Cheese is usually grouped according to criteria such as length of ageing, texture (moisture levels), production processes, fat content, animal milk, area of origin, and so on. Beer parallels this with alcohol level equating to texture, while fat content and animal milk can be equivalent to IBUs and malt respectively. Cheese can come from anywhere there are mammals to milk, and beer can be made almost anywhere there is water (even if you have to import the hops and malt). Wine is restricted to certain latitudes and climates, and its varieties do not carry the breadth and diversity that beer does. While yeast is used in both wine and beer making, it literally determines the type of beer being brewed. The equivalent in cheese, the starter bacteria, is also largely responsible for its flavour. These two microbes help produce the nutty, floral, pungent, tangy, and earthy flavours common to both cheese and beer. Both products can be described as smooth and creamy or sharp and bitter. Intense and pungent cheese can often overpower wine. Beer’s carbonation not only acts as a palate cleanser to counter the richness of cheese, it elevates the palate and highlights the nuances of the cheese, while the malt sweetness can help neutralize the saltiness. Finally, the recent trend to local cheese and beer products has led to a greater variety and higher quality of both. The mass produced, plastic wrapped, rubbery, processed cheeses and generic, light, fizzy, yellow beers which became the norm after World War II are falling to the ranks of craft beers and artisan cheeses in this millennium. In some cases, they may come from the same location. The Trappist monks in Chimay, Belgium are known for both their beers and cheeses, one with a rind washed in their own beer. The Benedictine monks at Maredsous Abbey make Maredsous cheese, although their namesake beer is now brewed under license by Duvel Moortgat brewery. While the beers are easy to find in Alberta, the cheeses are not. However, good cheese companies like Janice Beaton Fine Cheese, Springbank Cheese, Alberta Cheese Company and others can recommend suitable substitutes when the Belgian cheeses are not in stock. Without resorting to a Monty Python sketch (what beer goes with Venezuelan Beaver Cheese anyway?), here are some of the more popular cheese varieties and the beer styles which pair well with them.
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Soft Cheese with a Bloomy or Washed Rind
The light and tangy fresh cheeses like mozzarella, feta, chevre and the creamier, soft-ripened Camembert, Mascarpone, and Brie go well with hefeweizens, weissbiers, saisons, witbiers, and light lagers like pilsners. The noble hops of the beers go well with the floral characteristics of the cheeses, while the acidity matches up with the cheeses’ freshness and tang. Kölsch goes especially well with triple cream Brie. Fruit beers (especially Lambics) also pair well with fresh, soft cheeses. Wash rind cheeses tend to have a more earthy quality and pair with many Belgian strong ales such as dubbels , tripels, saisons and bière de garde.
Blue cheese is probably the most complex variety. It can range from salty to sweet, tangy to piquant. An aged blue cheese like Stilton can handle a heavy beer like a Barley Wine, where the toffee sweetness counteracts the saltiness of the cheese. IPAs go with creamy blues and Gorgonzola. The roasted sweet malt of stouts also pair well with tangy blue cheeses.
Semi-Soft Cheese Colby, Monterey Jack, Havarti, Muenster, Limburger and similar cheeses are in the semi-soft category. These cheeses have a sharper quality to them than soft cheeses and pair well with English, Flanders and American brown and amber ales. Semi-Hard Cheese With even bolder flavour than semi-soft cheese, this category includes cheddar, provolone, Gouda, Jarlsberg, Gruyère, Edam and others. Bocks, dark lagers, brown ales, and Oktoberfest/Marzens, all have the roasted malt flavour that balances the nutty character of these cheeses. Stout and old cheddar is an English classic. When these cheeses are aged and smoked, the stouts, porters, smoked beers, saisons, and IPAs have the hops and carbonation to match the sharpness of the cheese.
When pairing beer and cheese, follow the basic rules that work for food and wine. Know how to balance the weight, aroma, and flavour of the cheese with the beer. Also, either contrast or complement the flavours and textures. Although the rules for beer and cheese pairings are not set in stone, there are some basic guidelines: • Pair lighter beers with young, fresh cheeses and strong • Pair sweet beers with blue cheeses • Pair malty, toasty beers with nutty, aged cheeses • and hoppy, more bitter beers with tart, sharp cheeses. Exercise your own taste buds and remember, more than one cheese will match with a beer style, and many types of beer will pair with a single cheese variety. Lastly, don’t forget the joy of the perfect culinary three-way, where toasted bread and melted cheese match perfectly with a slightly chilled brew. Yes, experiment with the simple grilled cheese sandwich and fine craft beer. Bread, cheese and beer choices are up to you.
Hard Cheese Hard cheeses include Parmesan, Romano, Asiago, Swiss, and others. These are often grated or used to accompany fruit, nuts and other appetizer items. Moderately hoppy pale ales or amber beers go with them. Swiss cheese goes well with Marzens.
St. Patrick’s Day is almost upon us, and that calls for some good beer! Beer for this special occasion is not green, and is so much more than just stout. It is Irish and delicious, and comes in many varieties. Steer clear of the green bubbly and get your hands on these true Irish brews to experience what real Irish beer tastes like. Though Guinness is a fan favourite all year round, never underestimate the variety of other great Irish beers out there. Harp Lager from Dundalk, County Louth, is a great session beer at 4.3% and bright golden in colour. It is very clean and fresh with faint hops for a light bitter finish. This easy-todrink beer is perfect to celebrate the Irish in you. Pair Harp with a mild white cheddar cheese and crusty bread or enjoy on its own. Kilkenny Cream Ale, from Kilkenny, is slightly more complex in body and has a brownish copper hue. Enjoy a pint of this smooth, toasted malt brew with its generous thick and creamy head, aside a nice sirloin steak and sautéed mushrooms. Sip this beer down to the very finish and notice the fancy thick lacing left around the glass. For the palate that craves more malt, colour and complexity, Irish Red Ale will be sure to fit the bill. The Porterhouse Red Ale, from Dublin’s first microbrewery pub, features malt that creates a moderate sweetness with notes of caramel, fruit and cocoa. Its reddish hue is bold, with a very slight head formation and pleasantly mild hop presence. Pair this with a juicy hamburger served on fresh dark rye bread. Pick up theses brews for your St. Patrick’s Day festivities, but whatever the occasion, they are sure to please!
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Behind The Scenes at Catch: Our Culinaire Competition Winner
THE HoTEl arTs group palETTE THE HoTEl arTs group palETTE
By Fred Malley, CCC
Risking some embarrassment to recount our readers’ biggest kitchen disasters, Chef Kyle Groves chose Barbara Brayshaw to spend an evening with him at Catch, orchestrating a busy dining room and Oyster Bar. She is both charming and gracious, which belies a love of things culinary. Her incident is one that a chef can relate to. Much like making lemonade when life hands you a lemon, Barbara resolved to execute a saved quiche recipe from the Victoria Times Colonist as a birthday present to herself. ”The pastry recipe proved to be perfect. My gaze drifted from time to time to that pastry shell, sometimes feeling satisfaction and excitement, sometimes wondering if it will hold. The moment arrived. Half the goodies in and I began to pour in the egg mixture. It held until it didn’t; a gentle stream of pale yellow making its way through a tiny break at the top of the pastry”. A tentative pause to ponder and “a crucial element penetrated into my consciousness. In an instant the whole thing was in the oven”. The flow stopped but the pan was awash with “the precious egg, cream and milk” that “cooked to perfection” while the quiche resulted in the right proportion of ingredients. “Even the other party at the table deemed it all
worthy, stimulating and interesting”. Not one to waste, Barbara turned the remaining cheese, smoked salmon and leeks into a frittata, remarking, “Well, that is a keeper”. Now to a bitter cold January 29. Donning chef’s jacket, trousers and apron, Barbara agreed she would have observer status. She settled comfortably into her new attire “to be fully immersed in the world of Catch, and fully engaged as a student. And learn I did – by watching, listening, questioning and tasting. Chef Groves was amazing, and an amazingly dedicated host and teacher. Over the course of the evening I came to sense that dedication is integral to anything he undertakes. Tasting experiences were exquisite, an incredibly silky-smooth parsnip puree to the most tender butter poached lobster, the secrets were revealed.” Kyle espoused on the restaurant philosophy of fresh and sustainable throughout. “The absolute highlight of the evening was quite unexpected. It unfolded during the preparation and plating of 9 mains, for one table. I’ve often been awed by the sheer beauty of a dish, but never imagined that the whole process of creating a dish, let alone several simultaneously, could itself be a work of art. A moment in which 5 individuals attending to a multitude of tasks became a coordinated, seamless, movement art that flowed onto 9 pristine white plates and transformed them collectively into a stunning display of colour and form. That moment was a singular representation of all the skill and dedication I’d been in the presence of ‘behind the scenes’ at Catch.”
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Menu Gems Our contributors are sharing their favourite dairy dishes in local restaurants… Heather Hartmann
Dan Clapson I’m not usually a huge fan of sorbet, ice cream or anything of the sort, but, for some reason, Cucina’s ‘Reverse Affogato’ dessert with sweet, warm vanilla cream and espresso gelato makes me feel as excited as a six year old with a gigantic ice cream cone.
Confession: I am a bad, bad Canadian. I don’t really ‘get’ the whole poutine thing. Most that I’ve tried, I’m very lukewarm about, and can either take them or leave them. But the BBQtine from JoJo’s BBQ food truck is something else entirely. In addition to the cheese curds, she tops the fries with a mix of her BBQ meats. The result is a sort of cheesy, meaty poutine gravy that is a little sweeter than average, and it’s just out of this world. Brenda Holder My fave dairy HAS to be Crème Brûlée from Emerald Lake Lodge (any restaurant really!), I don’t even know why, I think it just reminds me that it was the first sort of decadent food I remember eating.
Fred Malley You find some great food and value off the beaten path at times. I enjoyed an office lunch recently at Parthenon on Fairmount Drive SE. This family gem serves a tiropita appetizer of feta cheese in crisp buttery layers of phyllo. The daily specials are excellent and finish off with the baklava.
Christine Louie What is the most important element of a pizza to you? Is it the crust? The toppings? In the case of Hanni’s specialty pizza, the S.M.O.G., it’s all about the cheese. Topped with Italian sausage, mushrooms, onions, and green peppers, it’s the cheese that reigns supreme. This isn’t a dish for the faint of heart, as the sheer weight of a single slice forewarns of the potential calorific damage. However, I would argue this dairy indulgence is well worth it. When you sink your teeth deep into that first bite, the sensation of a warm, creamy, gooey layer of cheese enveloping your teeth and tongue is a cheese lover’s dream. Vincci Tsui I love Village Ice Cream. Its high fat content and Calgary’s cold winters keep me from indulging too often, but every time I go, I love checking out what sort of seasonal flavours Billy Friley has up his sleeve. My favourites so far have been Oaxacan Chili Chocolate, Bourbon Pecan and Spiced Banana... the fact that the ingredients are mostly organic and local whenever possible is an added bonus!
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Karen Miller I am a ying/yang type of girl. It’s all about balance. Don’t get me wrong, I have a sweet tooth but I will take frozen yogurt over ice cream any day because of the tartness. I love the Fairwinds Farm Chèvre Cheesecake at Boxwood for the same reason. A little acidity and tart flavour from the chèvre balances out the creamy sweetness.
Silvia Pikla The Coup’s warm goat cheese spread with sundried tomatoes served on organic focaccia bread is currently my favourite dairy dish. It’s creamy, delicious and the perfect appetizer to share during a date, complemented by The Coup’s candlelit tables and intimate setting.
If I cannot pick France, where the cheese course is “as much as you want of as many as you want” from the cheese cart, I would choose a hot pizza from the authentic wood fired oven at the Italian Supermarket on Edmonton Trail. Get ‘The Works’, loaded with everything and maybe even ask them to add Fior de Latte. Or really, any chees-y goodness from their lunch bar.
Janine Trotta My favourite dairy dish is definitely the decadent cheese fondue made with Swiss, wine and Kirsch and served with bread cubes and roasted garlic at the Grizzly House in Banff. I try my best to have it every weekend spent in the Rockies.
Saronn Pov Sent with haste by my new foodie friend Farida, I went to Centini on Stephen Avenue and had occhio di bue ravioli. It’s a giant ravioli made of fresh pasta, real ricotta cheese, shaved truffle on top and an egg yolk all swimming in onion and brown butter sauce. My fork went through the soft pasta and golden yolk spilled out, as I tasted, yeah….I floated right up into heaven. Luscious. Worth the price tag. Worth a night out on the town.
Linda Garson I’m somewhat of a blue cheese junkie. I just love it, all varieties and types, although Gorgonzola is where my knees go weak. The Gorgonzola Mushroom Dip at 80th & Ivy is perfect for sharing, and the Mac n’ Cheese Sticks with Truffle Sauce at the brand new Roosevelt, is finger-licking delicious (I might not share those though…) And have you tried the Fondue Sandwich at Mission Diner? Three cheeses are all melted and gooey and it comes with new-to-me banana ketchup – yum! And we just can’t leave out Notable’s brûléed Stilton cheesecake!
The Roots of Dairy By Brenda Holder
Ok, dairy isn’t exactly a part of my culture, and it was a bit of a daunting task to try to write about it until I dug deep… right down to the roots! Though my articles are about finding wild food sources, and much of that comes from my Métis heritage, there is a great deal of knowledge that I can extract from my heritage that fits well with food and drinks that aren’t part of my culture. Dairy is one that fits the bill rather well. One item in particular, is that of fermented dairy: yogurt and kefir. These amazing super foods have a lengthy history and at one time were considered as precious as gold! Kefir in particular is fascinating to me because of something known as kefir grains, and these are a combination of wild yeast and bacteria amongst a blend of proteins, sugars and lipids. They look very similar to cauliflower when they grow fairly large! These wild yeast and bacteria are steeped in the beginnings of life on earth (or so I’ve been told). Long before we ever learned how to preserve food with canning and freezing, we humans relied on Mother Nature to provide an answer. A preservation method known as lacto-fermentation is a natural way of preventing certain bacteria from putrefying our food. It has been used by ancient Greeks and on into the modern days. There are all sorts of books and websites that discuss how to make your own lacto-fermented food, so I will not go into it here, I’m sure a Google search will give you the desired information. I wanted to discuss the particulars about these wild yeasts and bacteria that are so beneficial for food preservation. We all know that yogurt and kefir, with live culture probiotics, are beneficial for health, and lacto-fermented food has been reported to offer the same benefits. It is vital to point out that we have a symbiotic relationship to these bacilli, in other words, we can’t live without them and they can’t live without us. So how does this all fit in with my “wild” perspective in harvesting? The yeast and bacteria are found on pretty much everything; in particular lactobacilli are found most commonly on leaves that grow near the ground and are predominant in roots. Ginger and sarsaparilla are commonly used roots to start the culture to make the original tonics (root beers) that were used for helping the sick to convalesce. The taste was so delicious that it caught on as a popular drink, and of course today, these root beers (though not resembling
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anything even close to the original recipes) are still very popular, though no longer used for their healing benefits. In the past I’ve used wild yeast from trees in my local area to brew as a starter for sourdough bread - and this is a form of lactofermentation that produces a batch of deliciousness. Lately I’ve used ginger root (unpeeled) to create an amazing lacto-fermented ginger beer and later in the fall I’ll gather sarsaparilla root to make a tasty tonic from that as well. I’ve been making kefir and yogurt like a fiend, and it is so easy to do and so full of health benefits that I can’t control myself. So those wild yeast and bacteria are welcome in my home and digestive tract at any time!
They say “necessity is the mother of invention,” but sometimes Lady Luck also deserves the credit. At the 1904 St. Louis World’s Fair, where the ice cream cone became a lasting tradition, both ingenuity and good fortune were at play. An estimated 20 million people attended this remarkable exhibition, which boasted over 50 concessions serving ice cream.
patent number 1,342,045 on June 1, 1920, for his “edible cone shaped container for ice cream.”
They say that at one point an ice cream vendor ran out of serving dishes. However, as luck would have it, located next to the ice cream vendor was Ernest A. Hamwi, a Syrian merchant. He was selling zalabis -crisp, waffle-like pastries. Hamwi saw an easy solution to the ice cream vendor’s problem. They say he quickly rolled one of his wafer-like waffles in the shape of a cone, or cornucopia, and gave it to the ice cream vendor. Once cooled, the vendor scooped in the ice cream. The novelty was a great favourite and instead of thousands of disappointed customers, the World’s Fair had a hit, and ice cream cones became a business.
They say when Howard Johnson served his first chocolate and vanilla ice cream cones in 1925, all-natural ingredients were used, together with twice the normal amount of butterfat content. Adding local fruits and berries he eventually developed 28 varieties, which were featured in his chain of restaurants across the USA.
In the previous century, ice cream had been served in cups, rolled in paper or served on wafers. With wafers shaped like coronets, the ice cream cone industry was established. One of the first US patents for a “mold to make an edible cup with handles” was submitted in 1903, and in 1923 a patent for an “Ice Cream Cone Rolling Machine” was on the books. Mr. Hamwi was issued
They say the first soft ice cream cone, developed by John McCullough and his son Bradley, was sold in Kankakee, Illinois in 1938. Together with storeowner Sheb Noble they opened the first Dairy Queen in 1940. One of the first successful franchises, Dairy Queen had opened over 1,400 stores by 1950. Canada’s first Dairy Queen was opened in Estevan, Saskatchewan in 1953. Sixty years later a number of specialty cones have been developed, making choosing ice cream more complicated than ordering a coffee at Starbucks. Eating ice cream also led to a huge moral dilemma for me at the tender age of nine.
We kept the food freezer across the hall from my downstairs bedroom, and it was not uncommon for my mother to send me to the basement to bring up the ice cream to be served for dessert. Nor was it uncommon for me to send myself to make an ice cream cone when no one was home. As I did the fetching and serving, I could successfully cover my unauthorized scoops. One day, I went to get my personal serving, but when I opened the lid of a newly purchased tub of ice cream, there were several scoops already missing and an ice cream scoop left in the container. If I told my mother that the food had been tampered with, I’d have to admit my secret excursions to the freezer. But we could get sick if the ice cream had spoilt. My conscience pricked, I brought up the ice cream and confessed. My mother insisted I tell my story to the store manager. To my surprise, not only were we given a new tub of ice cream, I was allowed to pick a second one. They say “honesty is the best policy’” and I agree.
They Say… “We All
For Cream” By Jocelyn Burgener
From Ireland to Turkey and Everywhere in Between:
Cream Liqueurs By Andrew Ferguson
While the cream liqueurs category of spirits is still dominated by Irish Creams, they can be made with Scotch, rum, brandy, tequila and other spirits as a base, each adding its own unique flair to style. Whether for use in a cocktail, baking or sipping straight up, there’s lots of variety to be had. None is more famous or well known than Baileys, the first Irish Cream. Launched in 1974 by Gilbey’s of Ireland, Baileys was four years in development, and was given a fictional name inspired by Bailey’s Hotel in London, complete with the signature of a non-existent R.A. Bailey. The brand was a hit and took off rapidly especially in the United Kingdom, the United States and Canada. Today Baileys is a very successful international brand, with 8 different products in its stable: Baileys Original; premium Baileys Gold currently only available through European airports; and five different flavoured variants - Mint, Crème Caramel, Coffee, Hazelnut and Biscotti (all around $32.99). Baileys Original ($31.99) is created by blending neutral grain spirit and cream with Irish Whiskey. The cream comes from the County Cavan dairy belonging to Irish dairy giant Glanbia. The trick with cream liqueurs is getting the cream and alcohol to blend and then stay blended. The process requires an emulsifier to bind the ingredients, which in Baileys’ case contains refined vegetable oil. All Baileys products are bottled at 17%, which means the alcohol is sufficient to preserve the cream and keep it from spoiling for between two and two and a half years without any added preservatives. The exact recipe for Baileys is a secret, but its success did not go unnoticed, spanning a number of competing products. Carolans Irish Cream ($36.99) was launched in the late 1970s by a rival drinks giant Pernod Ricard, who also happened to own the only two distilleries operating in Ireland at that time. Carolans is produced in Clorinel, in County Tipperary, and is creamy and more naturally sweet with the addition of honey as its principal flavouring agent. Curiously the name Clorinel is derived from the
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Gaelic words for “Vale of Honey”. Other Irish Creams available in Alberta include: Feeney’s ($21.99), Molly’s ($19.99), O’Casey’s ($21.99), and O’Darby’s ($19.99). The Scots make their own cream liqueurs too, with those made by Glenfiddich and Edradour being among the most well-respected and well known. Unfortunately neither is available in Canada due to their perceived short shelf lives, but fret not for there is the Arran Gold Cream Liqueur ($33.49). The Arran Gold is made without industrial alcohol, from single malt whisky distilled at the Isle of Arran distillery. The brand has won a number of awards including the World’s Best Whisky Liqueur, from Whisky Magazine! Arran Gold is very soft, but more complex than its Irish cousins, owing to the strong presence of flavourful single malt whisky. Rum also provides a suitable base for creating cream liqueurs, such as Sangster’s Jamaica Rum Cream ($29.99). Sangster’s was invented by Dr. Ian Sangster, and is made with Jamaican rum, cream and an assortment of Jamaican fruits and spices. Ron Barcelo Cream ($35.49) hails from the Dominican Republic, and is a blend of aged Barcelo rum, cream and other ingredients. The cream has a tropical flair with notes of pineapple, coconut, almonds and a touch of rum. El Dorado Rum Cream ($23.49) from Guyana is made with 5 year old Demerara rum, fresh cream and spices indigenous to Guyana. On the palate the El Dorado Rum Cream
is very toffeed with loads of spice and rich rum notes. St Remy A La Crème ($29.99) is a relatively late player to the cream liqueur game, launched only a couple years back in 2011 by the 120 French brandy producer. Like the Arran Gold and El Dorado it relies on oak matured spirit for a base, giving it added depth and complexity. On the palate it is nutty and chocolaty with notes of coffee and caramel. 1921 Tequila Cream ($32.99) is produced by tequila producer 1921, named for the year of Mexico’s Revolution. 1921 blends cream, 100% agave bianco (un-aged) tequila and coffee to create a sweet, soft, slightly herbaceous liqueur. This product took off in a crowded field of tequila liqueurs after Oprah Winfrey featured it in her O Magazine and named it one of her “favourite things”. Amarula ($25.99) is a South African cream liqueur made with sugar, cream and fruit from the African marula tree, the result of which is a liqueur that tastes like fruity caramel. The fruit of the marula tree is popular with elephants, and in turn, Amarula Cream supports elephant conservation.
A few others to try: Godiva White Chocolate ($28.99) This white chocolate liqueur is made with 5 times distilled chocolate vodka. Luxardo Sambuca Cream ($24.49) takes the anise-based Luxardo Sambuca and blends it with cream to create a smooth liqueur. Dooley’s Toffee Cream Liqueur ($25.99) is made in Germany from a base of vodka blended with toffee caramel. Hare Turkish Coffee Cream Liqueur ($18.99) is produced with Turkish coffee and cream.
The Luck Of The Irish… By Andrew Ferguson
If you’re feasting on St. Patrick’s Day this year, and indulging in all things Irish, let’s hope it includes a toast or two to the Emerald Isle, with a tipple of Irish whiskey. The Irish whiskey industry, after lagging behind Scotch whisky for most of the 20th Century is showing signs of resurgence.
In 2010 William Grant & Sons of Scotland purchased the Tullamore whiskey brand and immediately announced plans to open a new distillery in the town of the same name. The original distillery, which opened in 1829, had been closed for the last sixty years. The brand survived under license by Ireland’s uber-distillery Midleton in Cork, and after 1975, nearly all Irish whiskey production took place at Midleton, because there was only one other distillery left in the whole of Ireland. The Irish have the best claim to being the inventors of whiskey, have the oldest license to distil (1608), the oldest distillery (Kilbeggan) and by the late 1800’s, they were without doubt the largest and most respected whiskey maker in the world.
take over the new distillery, the Irish Parliament stepped in. There would be no further consolidation in the Irish whiskey industry.
But the turn of the 20th Century would not be kind to the Irish drink. It had been steadily losing ground to the Scots over the course of the 1800’s, and the famine didn’t help. By 1900, the Irish industry had coalesced around 28 large distilleries, while the Scots had nearly 200, albeit much smaller producers. Where the Scots adopted Aenas Coffey’s patent (AKA continuous or column) still, his Irish compatriots did not, giving the former a commercial advantage. The Irish War of Independence and establishment of the Irish Free State overnight shut the Irish out of the world’s largest market, the British Empire, fully 1/5 of the world’s population. Prohibition in the United States just a year later would be the final, near fatal blow.
William Grant & Sons’ announcement that they would rebuild Tullamore was a great boost to the industry. Within the following two years, plans were announced for no fewer than 3 more distilleries on the Emerald Isle. Ireland will have 8 operational distilleries within the next few years. This may be a far cry from the thousands of illicit stills that operated throughout the 18th and 19th centuries, and the 28 large distilleries of the late 19th century, but it is undeniably a move in the right direction. The prospect of a new standalone Tullamore distillery was greeted with great excitement in Ireland and by Irish whiskey lovers the world over. The planned addition of three more is icing on the cake.
In the early 1930’s Joseph Kennedy travelled to Ireland with a business proposition that had the potential to revive the Irish whiskey industry. Kennedy claimed to have advanced knowledge of the day prohibition would end, and had come to negotiate contracts with Irish distillers. Theirs would be the first legal whisky in the United States, a coup to be sure. It seems the Irish distillers didn’t buy the story JFK’s father was selling, and even if they did, they had next to nothing to sell him. On the day prohibition came to an end in 1933, the market was flooded with whiskies from Scotland. When, in 1987, John Teeling repurposed an old potato alcohol plant as the new Cooley distillery, there were just two other distilleries in the whole or Ireland: Bushmills in Northern Ireland and the aforementioned Midleton in the Republic. Both distilleries were owned by Irish Distillers, and when that firm made a hostile bid to
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Three distilleries turned to four in 2007 when Cooley distillery partly reopened the old Kilbeggan distillery; also known as Locke’s or Brusna distillery. Cooley had been making a blended whiskey under the name Kilbeggan for years, and surprised the world when they announced they would be reopening the world’s oldest surviving whiskey distillery. Commercial distilling began at the site in 1757, very nearly 20 years prior to that at the next oldest surviving distillery, Glenturret in Scotland (1775).
If you’re planning to raise a glass of Irish whiskey on March 17th, why not start by raising a glass to the prospect of a new Tullamore distillery. The letters “DEW” in Tullamore Dew ($31.99) are the initials of one of the early managers who did much to grow the brand’s reputation, a certain Daniel E Williams. Mr. Williams introduced electricity, the telephone and motorized transport to the town, and also owned a chain of 26 general stores. While the original Tullamore Dew would have been a pot still whiskey, today it is a blended Irish whiskey. Tullamore Dew is very soft and clean with a few rough pot stilled edges. The old Kilbeggan distillery is located but a dozen miles from Tullamore in the Irish midlands. Though production has only been underway there for the last six years, the name is also lent to a blend produced by Cooley. Kilbeggan 18 Year ($156.99) is a very lush and creamy Irish blend with layers of vanilla, white fruits and spice. Also available from Cooley is the Connemara Peated Single
Malt ($54.49), a more traditional style of Irish whiskey. This whisky puts paid to the myth that the difference between Irish whiskey and Scotch whisky is that the latter is peated. In the 1800’s most Irish whiskies would have been peated. Connemara is only ever so delicately peated, with sweet chewy barley. While all of the distillery’s bottles proudly proclaim the date 1608 as its founding, and there is some mention of a distillery named Bushmills in 1743, the current Bushmills distillery was not formally established until 1784. Prior to the opening of Cooley distillery, Bushmills was the only distillery in Ireland producing single malt whiskey. Its crown jewel today is Bushmills 21 Year ($202.99), which spends the first 19 years in Ex-Bourbon and Ex-Sherry casks before finishing for 2 years in Ex-Madeira casks. This is every bit as multi-layered and complex as Scottish single malts of this age, with wonderful depth and complexity. Midleton distillery produces most of the Irish whiskies currently on the market including Paddy’s Powers, Redbreast and Jameson. John Jameson established his whisky distillery in Dublin in 1780, where it operated until 1975 when production was transferred to the new Midleton distillery. The new distillery near Cork was part of a merger between Jameson, Cork and Powers distilleries to create Irish Distillers. Jameson is by far the best selling Irish whiskey today, a blend consisting of both column still and pot still Irish whiskey. The Jameson 18 Year ($130.49) is produced in batches, generally very fruity and caramelized with subtle spice. Midleton Very Rare ($160.49) was first released in 1984 and is a small batch blend released once a year. Its component whiskies are triple distilled in pot stills and aged 12-25 years in either Ex-Bourbon or Ex-Sherry, and vary from batch to batch. Green Spot ($80) is a pure pot still Irish whiskey bottled for Mitchell & Son of Dublin, and one
of just a few bonded Irish whiskies still available for sale. It is bigger and richer than the other Midleton whiskies, though still soft it is not as elegant as the blends. Adelphi Limerick Slaney 24 Year Single Malt ($269.99) is a very old rare single malt Irish whiskey bottled by Adelphi, a Scottish independent bottler. It is bottled at a cask strength of 56.8% from a single cask, with just 180 total bottles available. It is sweet and toffeed with tropical fruit notes. The distillery of origin is not specified, but is likely Cooley. If a St. Patrick’s Day gift is what you seek why not give the Writer’s Tears Cask Strength Gift Pack ($142.99), which is the only way to get their highly respected cask strength bottling, and it comes with glasses for sharing. The palate has loads of toffee and vanilla, and is a little more punchy than the standard 40% Writer’s Tears ($39.99). Both are very drinkable! if you want something unique, why not try the Teeling Hybrid Whiskey ($64.99), a marriage of 10 year old single malts from the Cooley distillery John Teeling helped found and Bruichladdich on Islay in Scotland. The whiskies were married together for 8 years before bottling at a cask strength of just 44.1%. A sweet and peaty treat. The prospects for the Irish Whiskey industry are continuing to brighten with more whiskies, new and reopened distilleries, and the double edged sword of increased demand. Already some Irish whiskies like Redbreast are becoming harder and harder to find, and other favourites are infrequently available. Drink em if you got em and ‘beannachtam na Feile Padraig!’ (Happy St. Patrick’s Day!) Sláinte! culinairemagazine.ca
Bitter Noir ¾ oz Woodford Reserve Bourbon
Notable Imaginations By Gabriel Hall
¾ oz Grand Marnier 3 dashes Angostura aromatic bitters Large scoop coffee ice cream Brewed coffee Combine all ingredients except coffee in Irish coffee mug. Pour in coffee slowly to partially melt ice cream and enjoy!
What would you do if you were given a lobster and told you had to use it as part of a cocktail? Would you wrinkle your nose and proclaim that shellfish and spirits should never mix? Or would you let your imagination run wild? Emily Butt was faced with that dilemma during the “Made With Love” qualifiers during the mystery ingredient “black box” part of the competition. Emily successfully incorporated the saltiness and savouriness of the lobster and won the qualifiers with a well-balanced drink. She then proceeded to dazzle patrons at the finals by incorporating smoke and home made maple candies into her drink, winning second place in the judge’s choice competition and third place in the people’s choice competition. If you ask Emily what she considers her inspiration, she will answer that she looks to 66 • March 2013
the “feel” of the season for inspiration. Emily often uses specific seasonal ingredients that embody that “feel”, something key to producing well-balanced, top-notch cocktails, that has become a hallmark of her work. “Things like lime cordial and sweet mix have additives; they have a lingering effect on your palette” Emily explains, “whilst using fresh ingredients like squeezed lime juice will be cleaner and lighter on the tongue, allowing you to bring out all aspects of the drink naturally without overcompensating for one flavour or another.” The cold bite of winter made her think of the words “hot, spicy and creamy” as the perfect cocktail to carry one through the cold nights until spring arrives. Combined with her love for bourbon she was able to develop a coffee cocktail which will warm your toes and provide the needed balance of sweet and
bitter on a winter’s night. Hence, the Bitter Noir. “I love bourbon; the heavy caramel notes, oak, and natural sweetness provides lots of character and yet very versatile when pairing in cocktails” she states. Other than perfecting her skills in scotch and spirits, Emily is finishing her ISG Level 2 to expand her knowledge and acquire depth in the complex world of wine. Her creativity and talent is on constant display at NOtaBLE where she is the beverage director. Chef Michael Noble proudly proclaims that Emily is a very dedicated member of their team and has aptly demonstrated her passion for cocktails within the one short year she has been behind the bar.
CASUALLY ELEGANT. UNIQUELY VINTAGE. DISTINCTLY CANADIAN. From the intimate setting to the vintage details, you’ll instantly be whisked away from the everyday with a visit to the Selkirk Grille at Heritage Park Historical Village. Walk in and see a prominent sandstone bar, feel the warm wood accents, and hear the sounds of music from a bygone era. Then delight your taste buds with a dish from the menu of Executive Chef Jan Hansen and Chef de Cuisine Ian Kennedy, comprised of locally grown, organic foods and Canadian specialities. Our skilled staff will match this exquisite menu with exceptional service, ensuring a truly elegant dining experience.
• Winter Special •
Enjoy 50% off select wines until April 30, 2013
Reservations 403.268.8607 or www.HeritagePark.ca
Open daily for lunch. Tuesday through Sunday for dinner. 1900 Heritage Drive SW Calgary
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