RESTAURANTS | RECIPES | WINES | CULINARY TRAVEL CELEBRATING THE FOOD & DRINK OF 速
JULY | AUGUST
l 2012 | Issue 16-04 | FREE | EATmagazine.ca
Blackberry Skillet Cake
EAT m Local markets are all about freshness, fun, and community. Vendors of these markets make, bake, and grow everything. Farmers bring to you their farm-fresh, wholesome foods, from fruits & vegetables, organics,,meats, seafood, and eggs to specialty cheese, jams, salsa, donuts, and so much more. Artisan offer specialty, one-of-a-kind, locally-made pottery products .Connect directly with local farmers who personally bring their goods to your plate. or the Enjoy quality seasonal food, picked at the height of its natural harvest. Take time to support local farmers and artisans in an atmosphere of festivity and community to positively impact your environment by buying within the shortest distance to where you live. Good for you; good for everyone.
RECIPES Picky Eat Ice Cream
LOCAL P Two Rive Ruby Red BC Rosés Rebecca Baugniet
FESTIVA Cowichan ........ Feast of F Cover phot
Moss Street Market
*NEW* * NEJames W* T The he E Emile mile H Henry enr y Bay Market Saturdays BBQ BBQ(9am-3pm), Grill GrillMay-Oct Stone Stone Saturdays (10am-2pm), May-Oct Corner of Moss St and Fairfield Rd
EAT is delive in BC includ Kelowna, Th
Corner of Menzies and Superior
Downtown Victoria Public Market Wednesdays (12pm-5pm), Apr-Oct Market Square, 560 Johnson Street
Oaklands Sunset Series Wed, Jul 4, Jul 18, Aug 1, Aug 15 (6pm-10pm) Oaklands Community Centre, 2827 Belmont Ave
Goldstream Station Market Saturdays (10am-2pm), May26-Oct Downtown Langford, Bryn Maur Rd
Peninsula Country Market
Saturdays (9am-1pm), May-Oct 1528 Stellys Cross Rd, Central Saanich
Summertime tea fun on Facebook:
North Saanich Farm Market
Weekly prizes & grand prize giveaways, special offers, recipes such as luscious tea popsicles, summer tea-tinis & more!
Saturdays (9:30am-12:30pm), June-Oct Saint John’s United Church, 10990 West Saanich Rd
Sidney Summer Market Thursdays (5:30pm-8:30pm), Jun-Aug Beacon Avenue in Sidney Bridal R Bridal Registry e g i sSalt t r y Spring Available Av a i l a bMarket le Saturdays (8:30am-4pm), Apr-Oct Centennial Park in the heart of Ganges Broadmead VillaMetchosin ge, Victoria Farmers’ Market Sundays 130-777 Royal O ak Drive(11am-2pm), May-Oct 250-727-24450 110 Happy Valley Rd, behind the firehall
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EAT MAGAZINE JULY | AUGUST 2012
Food Repo Tofino | U Victoria: Re Web Repor Deanna Lad Contributo Jen Dart, Jas Kusiewicz, An Morris, Eliza Tourigny, Sco
join the fun! facebook.com/SilkRoadVictoria
Tel: 250.384 Email: edito
Since 1998 | E
without the wri
FRESH | ORGANIC | LOCAL | SUSTAINABLE
1624 Government St. Victoria Chinatown
in the articles ar
the right to refu
eaways, scious & more!
RECIPES Picky Eaters . . . . . . . . . . .....24 Ice Creams . . . . . . . . . . . .....28 LOCAL PRODUCERS Two Rivers Meats . . . . .....20 Ruby Red Farm . . . . . . . .....32 BC Rosés . . . . . . . . . . . . . .....43 Rebecca Baugniet
EAT magazine july & august 2012
Moss St. Summe Summer r Market iiss delicious delicious
Tapas Concierge Desk . . . . . . . 06 Epicure At Large . . . . . . .08 Food Matters . . . . . . . . . .09 Meet the Chef . . . . . . . . .10
Whether W hether entertaining enter t aining o orr enjoying enjoying time t ime
Good For You . . . . . . . . .12
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Get Fresh . . . . . . . . . . . .13
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Reporter . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14 Ivan Mishchenko owner of Ruby Red’s Blueberry Farm
Liquid Assets . . . . . . . . . .36
Begin B egin tthe he e experience xperience aatt thriftyfoods.com/recipes thrif t y foods .com/recipes
Wine & Food Pairing . . .38
Season starts April 7, 2012
First Look . . . . . . . . . . . .37 FESTIVALS Cowichan Wine & Culinary Festival . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .....34 Feast of Fields . . . . . . . . .eatmagazine.ca
News from around BC . .39 VINcabulary . . . . . . . . . .42
The corner of Moss St and Farifield Rd Rain or shine. MossStreetMarket.com
Urban Farming . . . . . . . .45 Chefs’ Talk . . . . . . . . . . .47
Cover photography: “Blackberry Skillet Cake” by Michael Tourigny
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Editor in Chief Gary Hynes Contributing Editor Carolyn Bateman Vancouver Contributing Editor Julie Pegg DRINK Editor Treve Ring Senior Wine Writer Larry Arnold Okanagan Contributing Editor Claire Sear Food Reporters Tofino | Uclulet: Jen Dart, Vancouver: Anya Levykh, Okanagan: Claire Sear, Victoria: Rebecca Baugniet Web Reporters Sundays (11am-2pm), May-Oct Deanna Ladret, Ellie Shortt, Van Doren Chan 4450 Happy Valley Rd, behind the firehall Contributors Larry Arnold, Joseph Blake, Michelle Bouffard, Ezra Cipes, Jennifer Danter, Jen Dart, Jasmon Dosanj, Pam Durkin, Gillie Easdon, Jeremy Ferguson, Nathan Fong, Tracey Kusiewicz, Anya Levykh, Ceara Lornie, Denise Marchessault, Sandra McKenzie, Michaela Saturdays (10am-2pm), May26-Oct Morris, Elizabeth Nyland, Julie Pegg, Treve Ring, Claire Sear, Elizabeth Smyth, Michael Downtown Langford, Bryn Maur Rd Tourigny, Scott Trudeau, Sylvia Weinstock, Rebecca Wellman, Caroline West.
Metchosin Farmers’ Market
Goldstream Station Market
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Lush f THIS MAGAZINE ISN’T ABOUT FOOD
EAT magazine isn’t just about food and drink; it’s also about people. The people who grow the food we eat and make the wine and beer we drink. The people who have the entrepreneurial drive and the confidence to try something new and who put their cash and reputations behind their ideas. It’s the people who cook, serve and pour. Who farm, deliver, prep, and do the cleaning up after we have eaten. Each person puts their stamp, their hopes, dreams and philosophies on each plate of food, bottle of wine, or can of beer. If you think about it, it takes a long chain of people working in sync to get you your dinner. Farm to plate eating is a wonder of cooperation and passion. The next time you take a bite or a sip, think about all the people who were involved to bring you that culinary experience. Featured in this issue are numerous producers and restaurants with compelling local stories. Jason and Margot Pleym of Two Rivers Meats were inspired to start their business by Margot’s father’s farm in Pemberton. On Vancouver Island, Ivan Mishchenko, owner of Ruby Red Farm, overcame a deep personal tragedy to continue to grow his amazing blueberries. In City Farmer, read how Curtis Stone in Kelowna, with no previous gardening experience, turned his enthusiasm into a successful SPIN farming business. On the restaurant side, we hear about Jamie Cummins, a musician who directed his creativity to cooking in Victoria and Hamid Salimian, at the fine-dining venue Diva at the Met, who is storming Vancouver with his fresh take on molecular cooking. We also celebrate the Mint’s 10th Anniversary, a milestone worth cheering about in these tough economic times, and find out what Annina and Jörg Hoffmeister, a German chocolatier/baker couple, are doing in Osoyoos. Then we’re off to Sooke to meet Captain Ralph Hull, who commands the sushi boat with his booming radio voice while guests dine on Kari Osselton’s Island sushi originals. I could go on, there are so many diverse and wonderful stories about the people behind the food. I hope that after you read through the pages of our summer edition, you’ll start to look past the plates and glasses, while dining out in your favourite restaurant or sipping on the deck, and see all the people—which is where our amazing British Columbia food experiences all start. Want to meet more people behind your food and drink? Check out these upcoming festivals: Feast of Fields (Vancouver Island, Vancouver and the Okanagan) - where chefs provide exquisite, grazing-style food; the Cowichan Wine & Culinary Festival a condensed winery tour where you can taste with the winemakers; and TASTE, Victoria’s premier wine and food event - where the best of BC wines and foods can be found.A dn of course, visiting a farmer’s market is one of the best ways to get to know your farmer.
—Gary Hynes, Editor
EAT MAGAZINE JULY | AUGUST 2012
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SALT SPRING MERCANTILE
Steps from the Fulford ferry terminal, our store stocks an array of quirky and hard-to-find items amid an old-style ambiance. Unique products, country-style shelving, yummy food to go and friendly staff all combine to make your visit a welcoming experience. We are proud to offer a select array of island-made products, either edible or artsy, to take with you as a reminder of your visit to the island. 2915 Fulford-Ganges Road, Ph: 250.653.4321 www.saltspringmercantile.com
SALT SPRING VINEYARDS
Tasting local wine is an essential stop on your culinary tour! Our award-winning wines are poured by staff who are friendly and knowledgeable. Local foods that complement the wines are served during your tasting, a unique experience not found at many vineyards. With gourmet picnic items, music and grounds that beg you to stay, this is the perfect place to savor Salt Spring. Open daily from 11-5 June until September,Open daily from 11-5 June until September, 151 Lee Rd. (about 7 minutes from the Fulford ferry), 250.653.9463 www.saltspringvineyards.com
MT MAXWELL COFFEE ROASTERS
A local micro-roaster located in the foothills of Mt Maxwell, we are intent on bringing out the ultimate in quality, taste and freshness from our beans. We roast seasonal green coffee beans from all over the planet, enabling us to offer an ever-changing palate of flavours and aromas for your daily coffee ritual. Find us at the Saturday Market - Farmstand on Cranberry Road - Assorted Fine Island and at 595 Cranberry Road Salt Spring Island, 250.931.6727, www.mtmaxwell.wordpress.com
WELCOME TO BRUCE’S KITCHEN
Our food is prepared with care and imagination using the bounty that is available right outside our front door. Whether you enjoy a meal in the cafe or take dinner home, you will savour a meal prepared entirely in our kitchen. From our house-made potpies to our homemade catsup, we revel in knowing that everything you eat has been prepared in-house with care, attention, and love.
MISTAKEN IDENTITY VINEYARDS
Mistaken Identity Vineyards has seemingly transported a little piece of Tuscany to Salt Spring Island. Growing certified organic grapes and crafting award-winning wines, it boasts of a delightful Tasting Room with a deck and licensed picnic area overlooking a picturesque vineyard. Pick up some local breads and cheeses in Ganges and stroll a pleasant distance to the vineyard. Open daily from 11:30am to 6:00pm until September 3. 164 Norton Road, 250.538.WINE (9463) www.mistakenidentityvineyards.com 2
HARBOUR HOUSE HOTEL, RESTAURANT & ORGANIC FARM
Using hand-selected fruits, vegetables and herbs from our sustainable organic farm located just steps from the restaurant, Chef Nate Catto, creatively combines ingredients to produce a feast for the senses with fresh artisan breads, sauces and dressings to compliment the dining experience. Join us for a meal then take a tour of the farm! General Number: (250) 537-5571, Restaurant Reservations: 250.537.4700 121 Upper Ganges Road, Salt Spring Island, BC, V8K 2S2
FERNWOOD ROAD CAFE
Just past St Mary’s Lake, take the right fork and discover the Trincomali Channel and the Fernwood Road Café, the perfect place to experience what makes us quintessentially Salt Spring. Meet Jennifer, the owner who loves her job almost as much as she loves to bake the pastries that fill the cafe menu. Stay in for a coffee or pick up a picnic and visit Wallace Island (kayak or book online). 325 Fernwood Road, 250.931.2233 or 250.530.9320 www.fernwoodcafe.com
SALT SPRING CHAMBER OF COMMERCE
Located in Grace Point (across from the liquor store) 250.931.3399 Open every day except Monday for lunch and dinner
www.eatmagazine.ca JULY | AUGUST 2012
Culinary intelligence for the 2 months ahead
the concierge desk
by Rebecca Baugniet
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EASY COOKING FOR A HEALTHY LIFESTYLE This UBC culinary arts summer program, running July 6-27, focuses on healthy recipes for picnics and outdoor entertaining. Register early as enrolment is limited. $395, includes course materials, a chef’s apron and four multi-course meals. (www.languages.ubc.ca/culinaryarts) OKANAGAN SUMMER WINE FESTIVAL The Summer Okanagan Wine Festival is bringing you the almost excruciatingly gorgeous Summer experience: outdoor wine tastings with more bold flavored wines than you could ever desire; summer wine and cheese beach parties; road bike race tailgate parties in vineyard settings; the visceral sound of Spoken Word poetry matched with equally feisty wines. Running from July 7 - 15. (www.thewinefestivals.com) OUTSTANDING IN THE FIELD Outstanding in the Field is the wildly successful roving culinary adventure that travels across North America during the harvest season, celebrating food at the source. Two stops in BC this year – one at North Arm Farm, Pemberton, BC, July 14, and one at the UBC Farm, Vancouver, July15. (www.outstandinginthefield.com) MAHLE HOUSE GARDEN PARTY July 2012 will mark the 20th annual Mahle House Garden Party — a unique outdoor wine tasting and al fresco luncheon. The grounds will be scattered with tables offering samples from wine regions around the world. Lunch will include passed hors d’oeuvres, a buffet featuring the peak season offerings of our vegetable and herb gardens, hot cooking stations, and a summer ice cream & biscotti selection. July 15, noon-3pm. $65 per person, inclusive of taxes and gratuities. Call for reservations (250) 722-3621. GRUBS SUMMER CAMP – GROWING ROOTS IN URBAN SOILS Put on by the Lifecycles Project Society and the Greater Victoria Compost Education Centre, this exciting day camp offers fun and educational agriculturally-based experiences including exploring urban farms, building our own compost bins, playing with worms, learning about local food, planting seeds and growing veggies, outdoor games and activities, daily farm field trips and much more. July 16-20, from 9am-3pm. Ages 6-9 yrs. Cost: $150 (bursaries and payment plans available). For additional information or to register call (250) 386-WORM (9676) or email: email@example.com TASTE OF SPAIN July 17 at Paprika Bistro. $39 - 4-course wine & food tasting with Stuart Brown. paprika-bistro.com 250.592.7424 TASTE: VICTORIA’S FESTIVAL OF FOOD AND WINE Victoria’s fourth annual Taste festival will uncork Thursday July 19, with an evening tasting of more than 100 British Columbia wines and local cuisine prepared by top Vancouver Island chefs. Not just a wine festival, this culinary tourism experience is an extra long weekend of tastings, seminars and events...a festival with a culinary conscience. Events run through to Sunday, July 22. Tickets sell out quickly. (www.victoriataste.com). LAND AND SEA HARVEST ON A FAMILY FARM Imagine a long table dressed in white linens, silver and stemware. Place it in a farm field, flanked by rows of kale and cilantro. Paint a scenic background, say, of the Haro Strait, Gulf Islands, Mount Baker and other mountains. Now bathe it all in a warm, golden, slowly setting sun. Add a softly strumming guitar player and a hundred or so happy guests. Finally, bring a few perfectly executed dishes to the table and pour some of BC’s best wines. If this sounds like your idea of a perfect evening, make your way to the Vantreight Farm on Sunday, July 22nd for the Taste Festival’s Long Table Dinner in a field. This event is sure to sell out, so visit www.victoriataste.com for tickets soon. $139 per person. SLOW FOOD VANCOUVER CYCLE TOURS 2012 The 6th Cycle Tour Agassiz will be held on Saturday, July 28th and the 4th Cycle Tour Chilliwack will be held on Sunday, July 29th. It’s going to be a wonderfully s-l-o-w weekend! The cycle tours are aligned with the Slow Food movement and are designed to connect producers with co-producers (a slow food term for consumers as we are in partnership with our farmers). (www.slowfoodvancouver.com)
EAT MAGAZINE JULY | AUGUST 2012
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PENTICTON PEACH FESTIVAL PEACHFEST is an annual, South Okanagan Valley tradition, which first began in 1947, to celebrate the peach harvest in Penticton. This five-day extravaganza features live entertainment, a wide variety of food and more. Peachfest 2012 runs from Aug 8-12, on the shores of Okanagan Lake in Downtown Penticton. (www.peachfest.com/). FEAST IN THE MOUNTAINS Feast in the Mountains showcases BC's culinary bounty by transforming Whistler’s Rebagliati Park into a roaming gourmet sampling of local foods on August 24 and 25 from 4pm -8 pm. Visit vendor booths comprising of award-winning chefs, farmers, food artisans, vintners and brewers for a sampling of their offerings. (www.feastinthemountains.com) TASTE OF CHILE August 21 at Paprika Bistro. $39 - 4-course wine & food tasting with Stuart Brown. paprika-bistro.com 250.592.7424 NORTH SAANICH FLAVOUR TRAIL Enjoy a weekend celebration of farming, cultural events and family fun in beautiful rural North Saanich. August 25-26. www.northsaanich.ca FEAST OF FIELDS Feast of Fields is FarmFolk/CityFolk’s annual fundraiser. Net proceeds support their work year round as they help to create a sustainable food system for British Columbia. Not only will guests have a great culinary experience but they will also be investing in a secure food future. The Okanagan Feast of Fields will be held August 12 from 1-5 pm, at Claremont Ranch Organics, Lake Country. The Golden Ears Cheesecrafters in Maple Ridge will host the 18th annual Lower Mainland Feast of Fields on Sunday, September 9, from 1pm- 5pm. The Vancouver Island Feast of Fields will be held Sunday, September 16th, from 1-5 pm at the Alderlea Farm in Duncan. For ticket purchase information visit the Feast of Fields website (www.feastoffields.com). THE OAK BAY VILLAGE NIGHT MARKET Taking place on the third Wednesday of July, August and September, the night markets will feature local produce, artisans, music and special events in Oak Bay Village. The Oak Bay Village Night Market features produce from farms throughout southern Vancouver Island. DIRTY APRON COOKING SCHOOL KIDS CAMP For the third summer, The Dirty Apron Cooking School is putting kids and teens in the kitchen this summer. Beginning July 2 the cooking school begins with the goal of teaching children aged 7 to 11 and teens aged 12 to 17 the skills to prepare basic meals while learning about healthy eating and where their food comes from. The weeklong camp will focus on how to use a knife safely and with confidence, the basic building blocks of nutrition, and sourcing local ingredients. Tuition for the camp is priced at $490 and includes a daily recipe book, closely supervised hands-on instruction and all meals. For more information, including daily menus please visit: www.dirtyapron.com/classes. SUMMER WORKSHOPS AT FOXGLOVE FARM Summer is a busy time at Foxglove, with workshops on Gardening at the Dragon’s Gate (July 7-8), movie and pizza nights (July 12 and August 9), a weeklong farm and culinary camp for kids (July 16-20), and the Foxglove Festival (July 29). Visit www.foxglovefarmbc.ca for full event details. JOY ROAD CATERING DINNER WITH A WINEMAKER SERIES This series will be offered on select Thursday evenings this season with some of the Okanagan's leading boutique wineries: Van Westen Vineyards, July 5 – Tantalus, July 12 – Okanagan Crush Pad, July 19 – Le Vieux Pin*, July 26 – Fairview Cellars, Aug 2 8th Generation, August 9 – La Frenz, Aug 16 - Painted Rock* August 23 – Road 13, Aug 30 – Black Hills Winery* September 6- Guests will dine with the winemaker, the menu is created around the wines- from the best ingredients that foragers and local farmers present, as well as fruit picked on estate. Reservations are required as these events sell out quickly! Visit www.joyroadcatering.com to purchase tickets online. Thursday Winemaker Series - $115 + HST and gratuity *$10 supplement
Looking for an amazing patio with a view, mouth watering bbq and great live music? We’ve got you covered. Enjoy the sun, cool drinks, and items from the grill like Tandori spiced lamb burgers, fresh salmon burgers, locally made sausages, char grilled veggie burgers or our house made smoked brisket. Join us on the Masters Terrace for our NEW BBQ Menu. Menu starts at $10 and all items include your choice of house made spiced potato chips, green or Caesar salad. When the sun is shining the grill will be grilling. Visit us on Sundays from 5-7 and we’ll pay the HST on food orders!
-- | . www.eatmagazine.ca JULY | AUGUST 2012
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EAT MAGAZINE JULY | AUGUST 2012
epicure at large — by Jeremy Ferguson
The Golden Spice
Highly prized for its distinctive flavour, saffron is the most expensive spice in the world.
Cold sou fruity des
Some years ago, my wife and I were roaming the valleys of Kashmir in India’s Himalaya. The scenery was fit for an IMAX screen, but we were distracted by the turbaned entrepreneurs who formed gauntlets on select roadsides, their arms loaded up with bouquets of ganja—prime ganja at that—and saffron. We paused. We purchased. Not the ganja. The saffron. Oh yes, the saffron. What a deal. Saffron—the “red gold” of foodiedom—sets off the bells if only because it’s the most expensive spice in the world. There’s good reason for this: It takes the kiln-dried female stigma threads of 75,000 purple crocuses to produce a single pound—a pound that contains between 70,000 to 200,000 threads and sells for as much as U.S. $5,000. The consolation: A little goes a long, long way with this strong, elusive, deeply exotic flavour. I can’t imagine how to describe it because it’s simply not like anything else. Gastro-anthropologists believe saffron originated in Persia or Arabia, where the Arab word for yellow—the colour saffron imparts to food—is “za-faran.” It was one of the good things the Arabs brought to Spain when they overran the Iberian Peninsula. Saffron is still most famously associated with the great Spanish rice and seafood dish, paella Valenciana. But many others had cause to treasure it: the ancient Egyptians anointed their pharaohs with saffron-tinted oil. Cleopatra soaked in saffron-infused bathwater and took the spice as an aphrodisiac. Alexander the Great sprinkled it into his bathwater, too, as a way to heal his wounds (it’s still considered an antioxidant and anticarcinogenic); he was also known for his love of saffron rice. In his remarkable novel The Journeyer, probably the best traveller’s book ever written, author Gary Jennings has his hero, the intrepid Marco Polo, transporting bricks of saffron—the only currency prized clear across the Great Silk Route to Cathay—in his saddlebags. Later on, Henry VIII was reportedly so fond of it, he forbade the ladies of the court to squander it as hair colouring. Hindus ritually sprinkle it in the pudding that accompanies the dowry of a bride. It was so prized that in 15th century Germany, those who adulterated it were burned at the stake. Today, Afghan farmers are producing saffron—their temperate, dry climate is ideal—as an alternative to opium poppies. Nowadays, more than 90 percent of the world’s saffron comes from Iran, whose product is very fine, intense and floral. The savvy shopper looks for uniformly deep crimson-rust threads without yellow stamens or white streaks. Beware the scams: the Caribbean island of Grenada foists its turmeric as “saffron” on unwitting tourists. Store it in a dark, cool, dry place as you would wine. Don’t refrigerate it; it absorbs moisture and spoils. The trick is to soak the threads in warm liquid—some cooks say wine—for up to 20 minutes—to coax out its magical aroma and full flavour. For soups, stews and rices, this isn’t necessary. And use saffron sparingly: too much imparts a truly unpleasant medicinal flavour. It’s as versatile as it is expensive, finding a place in not only rice, but soups, breads, sauces and even desserts. Saffron and goat cheese pizza proves a delectably Mediterranean riff on the Italian fave. Cowichan Bay chicken breast with saffron and morels is uncommonly rich tasting. We buy it from Victoria’s answer to Ali Baba’s cave, the Blair Market on Pandora St. My wife melds it with ginger to sauce shrimps and scallops and then tosses the lot with black linguine. We also make an opulent Vancouver Island paella with aged basmati rice from India, chorizo, Salt Spring Island mussels, large shrimps, local manila clams and chunks of chinook salmon and Dungeness crab. But saffron assumes its most hallowed role in my beloved Provençal fish soup—a soup I’d take with me into the afterlife.
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Cold soup on a hot day: perfect as an appetizer, light meal or fruity dessert.
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Many of us consider soup a cool weather dish—a chunky potage or soul-soothing purée to warm us up on a frosty day. But come July and August, when the thermometer inches toward 30, when herbs and greens are in their glory and fruits and vegetable are at their peak, chilled soups are equally as comforting to body and soul. Cold soups are often thought to be more sophisticated than hot soups, but many actually hail from peasant origins. Eastern Europeans have made cold soups from the bittersweet beets and sour cherries that thrive in and on its soils. Scandinavians marry cucumber to yogurt and dill. The British blend leeks with Stilton and tart up celery, lettuce and pea soups with shade-tolerant herbs such as lovage or chervil. The French adorn melon and nectarine, as well as field berry soups accented with mint, lemon balm or tarragon. Perhaps the best-known uncooked soup is gazpacho, that cool Spanish blend of tomato, cucumber, garlic and onion. For years, gazpacho has been my summer go-to for a light meal. I omit the bread that is called for in most recipes, use mini or lemon cukes, and will submit to roasting less-than-perfect tomatoes to boost sweetness. I may even top it with a couple of prawns, although I usually keep it traditional. Recently I decided to take further liberties with this Andalusia classic. Thumbing through Yotam Ottolenghi’s Plenty, on display at his Notting Hill location, I spotted a recipe for green gazpacho in which the noted London chef/food writer carries parsley, yogurt, basil, bell pepper, green chili and olive oil to a delightful conclusion. This zesty marriage of green ingredients inspired me to take a closer look at my own backyard for some interesting twists on the soup. In EAT’s Island Wineries of British Columbia, Cowichan Bay’s Masthead Restaurant brings gazpacho home with roasted local organic garlic, blitzed red and yellow heirloom tomatoes and just-picked basil. Jeff Van Geest, executive chef of Miradoro at Tinhorn Creek Winery, takes even greater liberties with gazpacho. He combines pitted, skin-on Okanagan peaches with red onion, olive oil, garlic and fresh mint. Van Geest explains that the skins lend an agreeable tartness to the soup. “This twist on the traditional gazpacho represents an Okanagan summer, while using peaches in an unexpected way.” Looking for other fruity recommendations, I come across John Bishop’s suggestion from Cooking at My House to make blueberry soup as a starter spiked with a hint of mint or tarragon, a scoop of French vanilla ice cream, or served warm with a swirl of thick cream. It too is garnished with a sprig of mint. In much the same way, Allessandra and JeanFrancis Quaglia in New World Provence offer a recipe for raspberries prepared in a similar manner. They serve their soupe de petit fruits rouges chilled, over a bowl of fresh berries and finished with a leaf of lemon balm. One of my favourite summer soups is chilled borscht, but again I go looking for a recipe with a bit of a twist. There simply isn’t a better starter for grilled pork tenderloin or a better accompaniment to a roast beef and horseradish sandwich than the chilled beet and apple soup recipe on page 62 of Pan Chancho, The Cookbook— from the restaurant of the same name in Kingston Ontario. That’s the terrific thing about cold soup—its versatility. Fresh and light, they set up the palate for summer-simple main fare—grilled, steamed or poached organic chicken or fresh halibut, scallops or Dungeness crab. Or as a refreshing pick-me-up at the end of a meal. And what could be quicker that blitzing fruits and vegetable in the blender and popping the whole lot in the fridge until you’re ready to pour it into a thermos for easy transport to picnic blanket or park bench. Most chilled soups can be sipped from a mug or glass—no cutlery required. Tuck in crusty bread, a wedge of mild cheese, a crisp white or rosé wine into your wicker basket with a pretty cloth and you’re dining al fresco in no time. An added bonus, most cold soups are packed with nutrition (don’t tell the kids) and go easy on the waistline.
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For chefs’ recipes and tips for making chilled soups, check out www.eatmagazine.ca.
A Local Story. Eric Whitehead of Untamed Feast watches the forest fire season closely and quietly, planning his next move. A few months later he disappears deep into coastal BC forests and emerges with baskets of fire morels we use in our creations. Wilderness locations and hard hiking. Just one of the stories that make up our plates each day.
Stunning Views Lunch • Dinner • Sushi • Sunday Brunch
250-598-8555 1327 Beach Drive at the Oak Bay Marina www.marinarestaurant.com OB 5140 Oak Bay Marine Group www.eatmagazine.ca Eat Magazine 4.375" x 9.8125" prepared January 25, 2011
JULY | AUGUST 2012
chef profile — by Jeff Bateman
Chef de Musique
W w Jamie Cummins is cooking up enticing culinary melodies at Relish.
EAT MAGAZINE JULY | AUGUST 2012
“One of Victoria’s best-kept secrets,” tweeted Olympian Simon Whitfield after sending a CBC National crew to Relish Food & Coffee for a post-interview meal. Jamie Cummins’s bright, art-strewn, brick-walled coffee and lunch spot on Pandora across from Alix Goolden Hall isn’t hush-hush among locals, however. Its two awards in last year’s EAT readers’ poll are matched these days with a bustling early morning to midafternoon trade. The affable, sandy-haired Cummins, 34, opened Relish in August 2010 to quick acclaim. Simple, fresh and local was his credo as he melded a first-rate barista joint with a limited-seating, takeaway-friendly bistro lunch service. Regulars check the menu posted daily on Facebook, then line up for crispy smoked chicken with roasted cauliflower, slow-roasted lamb shoulder with merguez, Thai-style local rock cod, and other housemade fare: pasta, sausages, salads sourced from a nearby city plot, foccacia and outrageously good brownies. Yeoman feats of food prep are accomplished daily in a tiny backstage kitchen. Cooking is as “creative, spontaneous and expressive” as music, says Cummings. He studied jazz piano and played in bands as a teenager before taking a serious run with the Victoria roots-rock band Elephant Island. Like so many fine acts, the quartet couldn’t catch a break and Cummins sidestepped into the food trade in his mid-twenties. He’d enjoyed working the barbecue as a boy alongside his dad, a building contractor. When he left home (and his schoolteacher mum’s cooking), he bought his first two cookbooks of necessity: Eileen Yin-Fei Lo’s Chinese Kitchen (“I was fascinated by all the cool stuff I saw in Chinatown”) and Toronto restaurateur Wandee Young’s Simply Thai. Cummins made smoothies at Rebar, then began experimenting on his own with what he calls his first “real” kitchen bible, Thomas Keller’s French Laundry Cookbook. He studied at Vancouver’s Northwest Culinary Academy before joining then-chef Edward Tuson’s crew at Sooke Harbour House. In 2006, he moved to Paprika Bistro to work in George Szasz’s kitchen while the owner was busy launching Stage in Fernwood. “It was a real confidence booster to get that kind of trust from a man like George.” When Szasz sold Paprika two years later, Cummins joined his friend Dwight Joinson’s KnifePro and did on-site sharpening at regional restaurants. “The perfect way to learn how other chefs run their operations,” laughs Cummins. It’s all come together sweetly at Relish, which required only minor renovations to what was the Village Family Marketplace deli. The neighbourhood is sketchy by Victoria standards, Cummins agrees, yet he has encountered zero problems and has no plans to change a thing apart from ongoing and seasonal tweaks to the menu. “The crispy smoked chicken, the pork sandwiches, the brownies—if they’re sold out, people get upset in the kindest ways.” Such is the sound of music to a chef’s ear. Relish Food & Coffee, 920 Pandora Ave, Victoria BC, 250.590.8464, relishfoodcoffee.com
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www.eatmagazine.ca JULY | AUGUST 2012
good for you — by Pam Durkin
Vinegar’s Acid Test
The humble condiment has some grand health benefits.
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According to a 2002 usage study, vinegar is a pantry staple in 97 percent of Canadian households. But while most of us use vinegar, few of us give the tangy condiment much thought. We relegate it to the occasional vinaigrette or splash it haphazardly on French fries. And sadly, according to statistics, the vinegar we most often reach for is the lifeless variety known as “pure white vinegar.” Thankfully, vinegar is poised for change. Here’s why. Recent medical research suggests vinegar confers some amazing health benefits, and a growing number of culinary artisans, including some passionate British Columbians, are producing flavourful, complex vinegars certain to entice you from blander fare. Let’s take a closer look at why you need to become “vinegar savvy.” For millennia, folklore around the world has espoused vinegar as a remedy for everything from arthritis to weight loss. The Greek physician Hippocrates, known as the father of medicine, extolled vinegar’s therapeutic properties and prescribed it to his patients for various ailments. Modern research has possibly confirmed what Hippocrates knew—vinegar can enhance your health in several ways. A 2009 study undertaken by researchers in Japan found that daily intake of vinegar helped reduce body weight, waist circumference, visceral fat and triglyceride levels in mice without any other adjustments to the diet. The researchers believe acetic acid, the main component of vinegar, activates genes that are involved in breaking down fats, thus suppressing fat accumulation in the body. And there’s more good news. Several studies published in the journal Diabetes Care have demonstrated that taking vinegar with meals causes blood sugar and insulin levels to rise more evenly. While this is good for everyone, it’s especially important for diabetics, whose blood sugar levels tend to rise sharply and stay high too long. But that’s not the only reason to make vinegar your favourite dining companion. Other studies have shown the condiment helps people feel full longer—making it easier to avoid the snack attacks that can derail healthy eating habits. Need another compelling reason to keep the vinegar bottle handy? Vinegar aids in the absorption of important minerals like calcium. In fact, adding a few teaspoons of vinegar to meat broth can boost the amount of bioavailable calcium in the soup by as much as 40 percent. And if you still think of vinegar as “wine gone bad,” consider this—preliminary testing with animals indicates it may also aid in reducing high blood pressure and cholesterol. If you’re going to reap vinegar’s health benefits, frequent consumption is a must. So why insult your health and palate on a daily basis with mass-produced, bland vinegars ripe with colorants, sulphur dioxide and flavourings? Handcrafted vinegars made in small batches by traditional methods with quality ingredients are de rigueur if you want to enhance your cuisine and your health. While most of us associate vinegar with grapes or apples, vinegars today are made from a wide range of products all over the world. But you don’t have to go globetrotting to find delicious vinegars. There are many excellent varieties being produced in British Columbia. In Cobble Hill, Venturi-Schulze (www.venturischulze.com) has been turning out the most authentic balsamic vinegars found beyond Italy for 25 years. Drizzling one of their creations over a bowl of strawberries is a summertime experience not to be missed. Nearby, the folks at Damali Lavender Farm (www.damali.ca) are creating quality wine vinegars infused with lavender and rosemary guaranteed to make your summer salads and marinades come alive. In town, Spinnakers Brewpub (www.spinnakers.com) has a line of piquant malt vinegars that marry well with hearty meat dishes and strong cheeses. Garnering rave reviews for their fruit vinegars is West Vancouver’s Shady Glen Enterprises (www.loveberries.com). See what all the fuss is about by adding a splash of their cherry vinegar to some fresh oysters on the half shell! Or try one of the many organic wine vinegars from Summerland’s Valentine Farm (www.valentinefarm.com). Their Gewürtztraminer white wine vinegar infused with 1SPVE4VQQPSUFSTPG#$"MCFSUB'BSNFSTBOE1SPEVDFST apricots is splendid as a reduction over seafood or in a “shrub” (a cocktail prepared with vinegar) over ice.
EAT magazine • July + August 2012 edition
EAT MAGAZINE JULY | AUGUST 2012
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The haunting taste of lavender flowers adds an enigmatic background note to summer desserts, grilled foods and thirst-quenchers. This bittersweet, floral herb has citrus notes that marry well with both sweet and savoury dishes. Lavender lends any dish a je ne sais quoi mystery: that unique taste you just can’t quite identify. The herb can be used as a substitute for rosemary and oregano and is the perfect perfumey companion for summer fruits and baked treats. Varieties of English lavender (L. angustifolia) are most commonly used in cooking, and each has its own distinct taste. Harvest flowers on their stems in the morning, when the flowers are open and the sun has dried the dew. Dry them by hanging them upside down by their stems in a cool, dry, dark place. Crumble the dried flowers off their stems and store them in the freezer or an airtight container. Dried lavender is three times as pungent as fresh, so adjust recipes accordingly. To use fresh lavender, pick flowers on their stems the same day you’ll use them, and keep them in a glass of water until prep time.
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Herbes de Provence: Combine 2 Tbsp. each of dried lavender flowers, fennel seeds, dried sage, rosemary, oregano and basil. Use as a herb mixture or blend with olive oil and rub on vegetables or meat before grilling or roasting. BBQ: Use lavender twigs and stems under the grill to flavour barbecued foods and on top of the grill as skewers for fruit, veggie or meat kebabs. Baking: Try lavender focaccia, meringues, shortbread, scones, biscotti, lemon pound cake, cheesecake and lemon pie. Sugar, Honey and Syrup: Infuse sugar with fresh lavender (16 individual flowers per cup), grind to make fine sugar and use in baking. To make lavender honey, heat a cup of honey with 20 dried flowers and strain. Drizzle it on a goat cheese, pear and walnut salad or use it in any recipe that calls for honey. Add flowers when cooking a simple syrup and strain. Cook 1 Tbsp. fresh lavender, 6 Tbsp. sugar, ¼ cup lemon juice for 5 minutes to make a cake or cookie glaze. Milk and Cream: Place lavender in a tea ball and steep in warm milk or cream. Use the infusion to make custards, flans, crème brûlée, whipped cream or ice cream. Ottavio’s Bakery (on Oak Bay Avenue) sells house-made lavender gelato. Fruit Desserts: Dollop lavender whipped cream on berries, cherries and plums. Stuff medjool dates with lavender-laced walnut mascarpone. Chill out with strawberry lavender sorbet. Lavender Pistachio Lamb Chops: In a food processor, pulse 2/3 cup toasted pistachios and 2 Tbsp. dried lavender. Season 8 lamb chops with salt and pepper. Heat a sauté pan to medium-high, coat the pan with olive oil, and sear chops on both sides. Brush each chop with warmed honey, and then dredge in lavender/pistachio mixture. Place on a baking sheet and cook 10 minutes in a 400°F oven.
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Drinks: Infuse a bottle of gin with fresh lavender and keep in the freezer for gorgeous G and Ts. Make a batch of lavender margaritas, orangeade, lemonade or ice tea. Lavender tisane settles upset tummies, halts headaches and summons sweet dreams.
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Other yummy ideas: Seared ahi tuna encrusted with crushed lavender, peppercorns and fennel seeds. Fresh lavender mustard. Roasted new potatoes sprinkled with lavender and rosemary. Heavenly lavender jelly, made with fresh or dried lavender, sugar, water and white wine vinegar, is the colour of amethysts. A number of local farms sell lavender, either at the farm or at farmers’ markets from July to September. Kersey Lavender Farm (Brentwood Bay), Victoria Lavender Farm (Sidney), Lila Lavender at Pat Bay Farm (Sidney), SOL Farm (North Cowichan), Happy Valley Lavender and Herb Farm (Langford) and Elk Lake Farm (Saanich) sell lavender; Elk Lake Farm makes their own lavender lemon sorbet. Damali Lavender Winery and B & B (Cowichan Valley) is another source. Don’t miss their Lavenderfest July 28 (damali.ca). Ravenhill Herb Farm (Saanichton) sells lavender at their Sunday markets from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Self Heal Herbs (1106 Blanshard St., Victoria) sells culinary dried lavender year-round. Experiment with this exceptional herb, and remember, less is more when cooking with lavender.
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www.eatmagazine.ca JULY | AUGUST 2012
RESTAURANT REPORTER - victoria
Eating Well For Less Three places to eat in Victoria that are easy on the wallet —but still deliver — by Elizabeth Smyth
Discovery Station, 281 Menzies St. near Michigan, 250.590.6323 I like it when something basic can be made into something sexy, kind of like my husband after I let the Mayfair Mall personal shopper loose on him. Discovery Station in James Bay has done this on two levels. First, they’ve transformed a rectangle into a glowing Art Deco boite; I especially like the holder for vinyl LPs made out of the old Singer sewing machine treadle. Second, they’ve made some classic standbys a bit flirty. Take their $9 “bacon and eggs”: a sunburst of frisée salad tossed in lemon peel vinaigrette and sprinkled with croutons. Two poached eggs are in a place of pride in the centre, and lardons of high quality bacon from the Whole Beast in Oak Bay are sprinkled overtop. This is definitely a light version of bacon and eggs. The $12 meatloaf sandwich is not light, but it also comes with a twist. Sure it’s a big ol’ hunk o’ sandwich with a big ol’ hunk of bacon-wrapped meatloaf. The sexy part comes with the espresso-injected sweet barbecue sauce on the meatloaf (I would have liked more of the sauce). A sophisticated surprise was the potato salad on the side; its olive-oil base rather than mayonnaise made it light and the dill seasoning sparkle. The Spiced Lentil and Mushroom Strudel for $12 sounded the sexiest on the menu, and certainly came with a pretty salad topped with grated carrot and beet and a sprinkling of sunflower seeds.
But the “spiced” part was overlooked. Once a dose of curry is added, this will be a very generous and healthy vegetarian option. Be one of the first to try their new, very grown-up cocktail-like sodas made on site, in intriguing flavours of ginger beer, blackberry mint and apple pie for a fair $3.50.~
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Pictured far left: Bacon and Eggs (two poached eggs on top of a bed of frisée with chunks of bacon). Middle: Spiced lentil and mushroom strudel and pepper chutney). Right: Meatloaf sandwich served with orzo salad. Inset: Owner: Logan Gray. 14
EAT MAGAZINE JULY | AUGUST 2012
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The Soup Peddler/Hot and Cold Café | 313 Cook St. between Oxford and McKenzie |778.433.1007
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Pictured far left: Cosmos Means. Top: Chicken pozole blanco soup with chili oil drizzle. Bottom: BBQ Chicken Salad served with vegan curry soup and foccacia.
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The Soup Peddler is undergoing a name change, but fear not: the food and concept will remain the same at the new Hot and Cold Café. This long, thin restaurant in Cook St. Village is immediately inviting thanks to the sparkling front window and long glowing wood table. The chef and new owner is Cosmo Means, the man originally behind Mo:Lé before its change in ownership. Means is producing casual meals here, all for under $10. The menu structure is soups, hot sandwiches, cold sandwiches and salads. The soup board includes Yellow Coconut Curry, my personal favourite, which is rich, filling and velvety, a soup to linger over. The Tomato Seafood Chowder is a traditional bouillabaisse with tomato, fennel and saffron. The Chicken Pozole Blanco is one a smaller child might like for her order (mine, in fact, gobbled up a whole bowl before I, the official food writer, got to try it). It’s like a tamale wrapped in a Mexican flag exploded into a soup – the red soup buoys up little clusters of ground corn and bright green cilantro garnish. Also in the category of fun food is the Big Easy Meatball Sandwich for $9. Don’t be fooled by the word “sandwich”; a fork and knife will be necessary. The focaccia is made in-house, the boulder of a meatball is made with antibiotic and hormone-free meat and covered in provolone and a fabulous marinara sauce. For $10, you can get the BBQ Vancouver Island Chicken Sandwich with a side soup or salad. The salad is a painting on a plate, with its artistic fan of apple and cucumber slices and joyous profusion of sunflower sprouts. The sandwich has chicken pieces tumbling out of it, and oozes obsession-making barbecue sauce redolent of fresh ginger, apple and cloves. Dessert of Crumble Top Apple Pie made with white wine poached apples and organic short crust is just icing on the cake.
www.eatmagazine.ca JULY | AUGUST 2012
left: Sizzling Tandoor owner Narpinder Bawa. right: :Lentil curry over basmati rice, paneer masala, pakoras, cauliflower and peas, pakora curry and tandoori chicken. bottom: Chef Ram Chander
Sizzling Tandoor, 637 Johnson St. between Douglas and Broad, 250.388.5450 The quality of Sizzling Tandoor restaurant is best encapsulated by one dish on the $12 lunch buffet: butternut squash curry. With its intriguing base of mango powder melded with garlic, ginger, onions, mustard seed and split chick peas (no skimping on ingredients here), this is hardly standard buffet fare and I appreciated seeing it on the table. The initial sweetness of the mango flowed gently into a smooth warmth as some heat started percolating. This is not to say that the buffet basics at Sizzling Tandoor don’t also stand up well. The classic Daal Makhni, a lentil dish, was rich but not heavy, with a surprising floral note in the flavour. The butter chicken was mellow and earthy, with the scales tilted more toward tomato than cream in the sauce. The Channa Masala, a chickpea dish, is where you’ll get your heat kick; the spice simmers innocently, then builds up to a volcano two minutes after you’ve put your fork down. A must-try is the Aloo Gobhi, a potato and cauliflower curry with enough intense umami toastiness to give me that peculiar joy one gets scraping drippings from a roast beef pan. Some practical notes: not every dish will always be available. Dishes rotate based on season and ingredient availability. Lunch buffet hours are 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. weekdays, and noon to 2:30 p.m. weekends. And yes, bring your child. Children 6 to 11 are halfprice, and, generously, those 5 and under are free. I scoped a potential preschooler meal from the buffet: tandoori chicken, naan, rice pudding, carrot pudding and melon would do it. If you have a colleague who is unsure about Indian food, the menu offers a tandoori chicken Caesar salad, which may be a safe transition for the uninitiated. ~
EAT MAGAZINE JULY | AUGUST 2012
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www.eatmagazine.ca JULY | AUGUST 2012
reporter victoria Fruition Paletas | 837 Fisgard, Victoria | 250.580.3934 | fruitionpaletas.com
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In Latin America, “paleta” means a fresh fruit popsicle. Here in Victoria, Fruition Paletas means a source for sexy, sophisticated grown-up desserts in a swirl of flavours and colours. Near, of all places, Peterec’s Martial Arts Centre, it’s a bright green store with a bright green sign; being inside it is like being inside a sour apple popsicle. The giant chest freezer is a treasure trove stocked with exotic tastes and textures in a rainbow palette of colours. Eating the unsweetened Mango Lime paleta feels like being in Mexico. Roasted Peach with Marionberry is the pure essence of the summer stone fruit. Grapefruit is clean and crisp; if it were a wine, it would be a Sauvignon Blanc. Creamier options include the very intriguing Roasted Rhubarb Creamsicle. Even more grown-up is the Blood Orange Creamsicle, which is almost savoury on the outside, like a puckery marmalade. The Sour Cherry Yoghurt Bar’s cakey texture is a deep, rosy pink flecked with dried cherry. The Dulce de Leche Bar is positively decadent. The ice cream is made with organic milk and organic fair trade sugar, caramel and pecans. The delectable treat is then dipped in very high quality Belgian chocolate. The richest versions are the mousses. My favourite is the lemon mousse, a lemon curd folded with whipped cream, egg yolk and, of course, fresh lemon—a decadent symbiosis of creamy cheesecake and lemon meringue pie. The paletas are made in small batches and source local fruits and organic dairy products, as well as organic exotics, fair trade organic sugar and vanilla. Owner Brett Black caters to special events and weddings, actually matching paleta colours to each wedding’s colour scheme. The connection between these concoctions and celebrations is clear. In the words of my eight-year-old daughter, “they’re the delight versions of popsicles.” —by Elizabeth Smyth
Gemma Barman on the left, eating mango raspberry and Juliana Smythe eating lemon blueberry.
A successful 10-year run for the Mint
The three most important factors in a bricks and mortar business are generally considered to be location, location and location. The Mint proves the lie to that old axiom and has carved out a successful 10-year run in a windowless basement on a slightly sketchy section of Douglas Street in downtown Victoria. Now that’s an accomplishment. Get past the panhandlers and street scene, past the iron gate and the sparkled stairs leading down to The Mint, and you’ll find a comfortable, 150-seat restaurant-lounge with a wide-ranging drink offering and a unique Nepalese- and Tibetan-influenced menu. A staff of 35 serves what co-owner Mike Garner calls “an interesting mix of older diners and younger, downtown crowd” in a candlelit room he describes as “rugged swank.” A large contingent come from the service industry, which takes ample advantage of the restaurant’s 2 a.m. closing. Garner parlayed friendships made working for an import/export business in Nepal into opening The Mint in 2002. One of the original Nepalese cooks is still working for him, but Christopher Tulloch took over as head chef five years ago. “We have regulars who eat at The Mint two or three times a week, so we’ve always tried to keep our prices affordable,” Garner explained recently while organizing prep work for his daytime staff. “In the past year, we’ve launched a lunch spot at street level above the restaurant where we offer several varieties of traditional curry boxes and a selection of house-made wraps and sandwiches. We’re developing a line of frozen curries and momos, hand-rolled Tibetan dumplings. We’ve also started a delivery service for our take-home menu.” Chef Tulloch has recently added a goat curry dish and momos stuffed with water buffalo from Fairburn Farm to an eclectic dinner menu featuring long-time favourites like goat cheese salad, choyela (grilled tenderloin with lime, ginger, chilies and spices), lamb curry, pork momos and vegetarian dishes like spinach paneer curry and ginger cilantro sticky rice. Garner is the mastermind behind the restaurant’s extensive beer, wine and cocktail offerings, including four The Mint: From left to right: Wesley Skull, Robyn varieties of Phillips on tap, as well as bottled beer from around the world. A handful of unique Mint cocktails are valueGarner (owner) and Michael Garner (owner). They priced at $5.50, including mojitos, Caesars and two-ounce martinis; other cocktails are $7.50. The wine list offers a are holding a curry plate and some of their to -go dozen whites and an even larger selection of reds. frozen curries. The restaurant features DJ’s spinning house, dub step and other forms of electronica on a pair of turntables propped on top of an old cook stove from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. Thursday through Sunday. A side room that can cater to 50 people is open on the weekend when the late-night crowd turns The Mint’s main room into a party. Lit by fairy lights looped along the ceiling, the room pulses with a sexy, urban buzz. “I think most of our customers enjoy the atmosphere,” Garner enthused. “It’s pretty chilled-out early in the evening, but most nights it is a party. My motto is ‘Every day is New Year’s Eve!’” The Mint | 1414 Douglas St., Victoria | 250.386.6468 | themintvictoria.com –Joseph Blake
EAT MAGAZINE JULY | AUGUST 2012
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www.eatmagazine.ca JULY | AUGUST 2012
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Sushi on the Sea | 6669 Horne Rd., Sooke. | www.sushionthesea.com | 250.642.6669. Sooke candied salmon and yam sushi is a creamy, sweet, gentle mélange of textures, just one of the little midnight inspirations of Sushi on the Sea’s Kari Osselton. The self-taught sushi chef marinates red pepper in Tugwell Creek wildflower honey for a subtle and sweet prawn roll. Her spicy tuna roll heats up with a signature blend of lemon and orange rind, black sesame seeds, garlic, salt and chili. Wasabi is prepared in small lots daily to preserve the kick of this essential sushi ingredient. Sushi on the Sea opened in 2003, the first sushi restaurant in Sooke, and is located on Rolano, an 80-foot harboured boat licensed to sleep up to fifteen people. It is “off the beaten path,” not well signed, not high profile, but much appreciated by those who know it well—a beautiful and unusual find for sushi lovers. The boat is docked at the private wharf of the Sooke Ocean Resort, a spacious and iconic West Coast house available for larger events and weddings, sushi-making workshops and as a vacation rental. Turning off the Sooke Road in the heart of the village, we head towards the sea, park and wander past a few local fisherfolk who offer a hello and “welcome to Sushi on the Sea.” Co-owner with Osselton is Captain Ralph Hull, who greets us with a warm and compelling voice that has graced 17 radio stations over 23 years. He regales us with many remarkable stories over the course of the evening as he disappears and reappears in an assortment of naval and Japanese smoking jackets. We settle in to our table, the table (the restaurant seats eight to 10), a yew and epoxy creation that Captain Ralph built himself, and relax into the subtle and soothing lolling of the boat, perusing the books and marine accoutrements that line the room. Fresh, salty air comingles with the clack of small waves against the hull. And then the sunomono salad arrives and we prepare to enjoy Osselton’s sushi artistry. The bulk of the ingredients are Vancouver Island sourced and the menu is a balance of classics and Island originals. Guests can sample from a list of more than three dozen kinds of sushi as well as half a dozen nigiri. The experience is a quick, perfect getaway from the city. There are two seatings, at 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. on Friday and Saturday nights. Call or email for reservations as they are often full. —By Gillie Easdon Note: Sushi on the Sea is not licensed.
local foods Two Rivers Meats | 180 Donaghy Avenue | North Vancouver, B.C. | (604) 990-5288 | www.tworiversmeats.com Have you ever found yourself perusing a restaurant menu, pondering a meat dish, yet worried about the quality of the product—or quality of life had by the animal? Today’s consumers are increasingly aware of the environmental and ethical concerns associated with factory farming and the mainstream poultry and livestock industry. Enter Two Rivers Meats, the company founded in January 2008 by Jason and Margot Pleym. Inspired by Margot’s father’s farm, Pemberton Meadows Natural Beef, the couple set out to find other producers of cattle, poultry, sheep, game, and pork that demonstrated the same dedication to ethical and sustainable animal husbandry. Today, Two Rivers Meats represents over 20 small-scale farms, ranches, and producers, supplying dozens of discerning restaurants, hotels and retailers across British Columbia. Some of their products include custom-cut beef, chicken, pork, duck, venison, elk, and game birds, as well as housemade sausages and charcuterie. All Two Rivers products are antibiotic, hormone, and chemical-feed free. Says Jason Pleym, “We go straight to the farm and speak with the farmer. We learn and inspect what they do, and how they do it…[then] tell the story of the product, which in turn helps the consumer in their decision making process. They are now educated in the food they are cooking for their customers and families.” The concept is catching on, and Two Rivers Meats is busier than ever. As more hotels, restaurants and stores make the switch, the company is also considering a direct-to-consumer program. Good news for concerned consumers, and even better news for all the would-be jam-packed, medicated animals of the factory farm world. So, what cut does the man who made 2011 Business in Vancouver’s 40 under 40 list like the most? “I have enjoyed cooking our Heritage Angus beef cheeks, slow braise in red wine and fennel, star anise…flavour, texture, melt-in-your-mouth goodness!” Sold. —By Deanna Ladret
EAT MAGAZINE JULY | AUGUST 2012
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Diva at the Met | 645 Howe St. | 604.602.7788 | www.metropolitan.com/diva
Photo courtesy of Diva at the Met
Slow-cooked veal breast glazed in verjus, okra, pickled grapes, black olive soil, sorrel, beef chips & watercress
AVAILABLE IN WHITE + RED
EXCLUSIVELY AT CACTUS CLUB CAFE.
EAT MAGAZINE JULY | AUGUST 2012
With all the talk over the last couple years about the death of fine dining in Vancouver, it was with a bit of scoffing that I first heard rumours of the molecular miracles happening at Diva at the Met under its new executive chef, Hamid Salimian. But then, a friend started whispering and next thing you know, I was seated at the back of the restaurant, facing the kitchen and watching the church-like stillness of a kitchen that moved seamlessly through a multi-course tasting menu ($55 for five courses; $75 for seven courses) with nary a whisper. As I watched, and sipped a little bubbly, a small piece of broken tree arrived at the table, covered with something white and fluffy. “Olive oil marshmallow,” we were told. “A small amuse.” It’s not often my eyes roll into the back of my head for a nibbler, but…it was that good. Sprinkled with a little kalamata salt and olive oil powder, it was something the gods whispered of during wine-induced flights of fancy, but had never breached reality before this point. The next little tease was called a potato chip, but appearances were against it. A large stone held up a transparent, pearlescent sheet so thin it almost didn’t exist. The flavour and crunch when bitten into, however, were like consuming a bag of Pringles in a single swallow—fabulously overwhelming, and made even better by the little dots of crème fraîche and dashes of spruce needles in place of dill. A foie gras “walnut” with quince jelly did actually resemble the nut, but with the texture of a parfait. Salimian’s care and artistry, however, avoids getting too precious. A starter of Atlantic lobster was served in icy kimchi slush, simultaneously spicy and soothing. Pork jowl gets sided with cauliflower cous cous, fava beans and pork jus. The menu is constantly evolving with the season and what’s available, in keeping with the Cascadian theme. Razor clams were available for the first time that night, and came tossed with sunchokes, sweet cecily, sea asparagus, clam nectar and jus, with a briny freshness that was bright and juicy. Salimian has put those fine dining rumours firmly to rest, and given Diva a fresh start at the same time. With a killer wine list to match, the only thing missing here are the kudos. Ahem… —By Anya Levykh
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Le Parisien | 751 Denman St. | 604.687.1418 | www.leparisien.ca
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It doesn’t seem that hard to find good French bistro fare these days. Places like Jules, Café des Fruits, Pied-à-Terre and Bistro Pastis have long been known for the quality of their frites, tartare, steak onglet and sundry other French staples. Which is why it was surprising to hear that Bistro Pastis owner John Blakely was opening another French eatery, this time in the West End. Was there really enough of a demand to justify another upscale-casual French affair? Mais oui. Le Parisien’s menu—overseen by Executive Chef Tobias Grignon—is all about a return to French classics like oyster beignets served on the half-shell with ginger-apple remoulade, or the absolutely stunning and earthy roasted bone marrow, sided with sweet onion jam. The menu is full of dishes that will challenge diners’ palate preconceptions—like the boudin noir, a fabulous, sliced blood sausage served with roasted apples and whipped potatoes—as well as more familiar items like the duck confit cassoulet with bacon, Toulouse sausage, cannellini beans and a nice thick slice of duck fat to round things out nicely. Other dishes take those same classics and turn them on their ear. The French onion fondue is a happiness-sized ramekin full of caramelized onions, melted gruyere and sherry, just begging for healthy swipes of toasted baguette. Smoked chicken liver and foie gras parfait has a depth of flavour that is offset perfectly by the pear compote, and crispy veal sweetbreads are given extra punch with truffled honey. It’s a menu that is as inventive with cocktails as with food, as seen in the Le Parisien, a heady mixture of vodka, pineau des charentes, amaretto and lavender. Bonus, the craft brew list includes gems like Stanley Park Amber Ale and Light House Brewery Keeper’s Stout. Add in the excellent wine list, and all that’s missing is a reservation. —By Anya Levykh
MGP STUDIO macarthur goddard phillips PLANNING
REFINED. TIMELESS. SOPHISTICATED. 250.770.1104 WWW.GODDARDARCHITECTURE.COM
okanagan Dolci Artisan Fare | 8710 Main St., Osoyoos | 250.495.6807 | www.dolcideli.com Annina and Jörg Hoffmeister are an incongruous couple to meet in Osoyoos, but that is exactly where this chocolatier-master baker couple set up their deli/bakery outfit, in the busiest part of Main Street, and steps from Osoyoos Lake. Dolci is the couple’s expression of their affinity for “the sweet life” or la dolce vita. That affinity informs everything from the smoked meats they prepare in-house, to the carefully made pastries and housemade breads. It’s not surprising. Annina received her chocolatier diploma from the Swiss Konditorei/Confiserie, and Jörg earned his Master’s in Pastry and Baking in Germany. These are serious sugar and yeast freaks, with a carnivorous streak to boot. On my first visit, I tried the club panini, made with their house-cured and double smoked bacon (over applewood from the east bench of Osoyoos), layered with turkey, tomato, local arugula and the house mayo. It was a sunny day, so I ate out on the back patio, a fantastic little walled garden a la Alice in Wonderland, with bougainvillea, trellises, and comfy padded seating, perfect for enjoying lunch and sweets, along with a great glass of local Gewürtz (yes, it’s licensed). The wine list focuses on the Golden Mile wineries a few minutes’ drive away. The relationship is symbiotic, as certain wineries, like La Stella, carry Dolci’s cured meats and antipasti items. If charcuterie plates are more your style, the pulled-pork (made in-house, like everything else), is not to be missed. Tender, juicy and hot smoked for 14 hours to reach fork-tender perfection, it goes perfectly with the pumpkin rye. Most sandwiches are around the $6-$8 mark, and are made to order. Desserts are also stellar, whether it’s the mini sacher torte or the classic strawberry rhubarb crumble. Even the banana bread was exceptional—moist, fresh and dusted with a little icing sugar for just the right hit of sweetness. Dolci is also a retail operation, selling their smoked meats—like the stunning bundnerfleisch, a lean beef cured prosciutto-style—by the pound, as well as artisan preserves, cheeses, spreads, crackers, and fair trade coffees and teas. With summer in full swing, the picnic lunches are also popular. Call ahead to avoid the wait. —By Anya Levykh
www.eatmagazine.ca JULY | AUGUST 2012
Grilled broccoli and scallions
Arugula and red beets
RECIPES ON THE NEXT PAGE
Quaff a rosé
Recipes and food styling by JENNIFER • Photography by MICHAEL TOURIGN
Basil blue goddess dressing Radishes Fingerling potatoes
Soft boiled egg Flower and Berry Power Dressing
Green beans Chevre
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ecipes and food styling by JENNIFER DANTER Photography by MICHAEL TOURIGNY
Roasted red & yellow peppers
Truffled chevre vinaigrette
DRESS THEM UP
Summer is all about garden bounty and farmer’s markets: what you can pull out of the earth itself or throw in your basket at the Saturday local. Go veggie for dinner (or lunch) and turn into a picky eater…put out a little of this, a little of that…then help yourself. Make groupings of random garden goodies – roasted peppers, grilled broccoli, barely steamed green beans (just for starters) and dress them up with different salad dressings made tart and tangy from soft chevre, handcrafted by Salt Spring Island Cheese.
Basil Blue Goddess Dressing
EAT MAGAZINE JULY | AUGUST 2012
This dressing is loosely based on “Green Goddess Dressing” – but made creamy with chevre and a kick of blue cheese. Try it on potato salad, Cobb salad or drizzle over romaine spears. In fact, use anytime you’d normally choose a thick creamy dressing. ½ avocado ½ cup buttermilk ½ -5 oz (140 g) container Salt Spring Island Basil Chevre 1 oz blue cheese, crumbled 1 Tbsp each lemon juice and white wine vinegar 1 garlic clove, minced ¼ cup olive oil Handful of chopped fresh basil Place avocado, buttermilk, chevre (including the basil from the top of the cheese), blue cheese, lemon juice, vinegar and garlic in a blender. Whirl to puree, then slowly whirl in oil. Add a few spoonful’s of cold water to thin dressing, as needed. Cover and refrigerate up to 2 to 3 days. Makes 1½ cups.
Flower and Berry Power Dressing With its berry pink colour, this is lovely on anything green – grilled broccoli, crunchy green beans or a great finisher for barely cooked young kale. Oh, tomatoes adore me too; even though they aren’t green. 2 Tbsp Salt Spring Island Flower Chevre ¼ cup lemon or lime juice (or a mix) ¼ cup warm water 6 raspberries 1/2 tsp sugar 1/3 cup olive oil 1 Tbsp chopped fresh chives Place all ingredients, except chives, in a blender. Whirl to puree. Stir in chives and chopped flower from top of chevre. Refrigerate up to 5 days. Makes 1 cup.
Truffled Chevre Vinaigrette Use the top of the truffled chevre to make the dressing, then crumble the cheese over whatever type of salad you serve it with. Delicious on grain or bean salads, over flavourful greens or splashed over roasted ruby beets. 140 g Salt Spring Island White Truffle Chevre 2 Tbsp sherry or balsamic vinegar 1 garlic clove, minced Pinch of sugar and sea salt ½ cup oil Stick all ingredients in a blender and whirl its guts out. Taste and adjust seasoning with another pinch of sea salt. Save the cheese for salad time! Makes ½ cup.
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Summer salad days Blackberry Skillet Cake Cake in a pan is irresistible! The berries leak out sweet juices keeping it ultra-moist. This is the kind of cake you need to bake, then eat the same day. 1 ½ cups flour 3/4 tsp each baking powder and baking soda ¼ tsp salt 3/4 cup butter, at room temperature 1 tsp finely ground fennel seeds (optional) ¾ cup brown sugar 1 egg + 1 yolk 1 tsp vanilla extract 3/4 cup buttermilk 11/2 cups blackberries 1 Tbsp coarse sugar (optional) Whisk flour with baking powder, baking soda and salt. In a bowl, using an electric mixer, beat butter with fennel until smooth, then beat in sugar until fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. Beat in egg and egg yolk, then vanilla. Beat in half the flour, then all the buttermilk, then remaining flour just until mixed. Turn into an oiled cast iron skillet and spread batter to edges. Scatter berries overtop and slightly press into batter. Sprinkle with coarse sugar. Bake in preheated 375F oven until edges are deep golden and centre is cooked through, 25 to 30 minutes.
www.eatmagazine.ca JULY | AUGUST 2012
master cooking class
Creamy ice cream tinted with coffee
Text and food styling by DENISE MARCHESSAULT Photography by CAROLINE WEST
Easy and delicious, homemade ice cream is the original warm weather comfort food. 28 EAT MAGAZINE JULY | AUGUST 2012
Tossing a carton of ice cream in your shopping cart might be second nature any time of year, but making your own is pure summer indulgence.
Tossing a carton of ice cream in your shopping cart might be second nature any time of year, but making your own is pure summer indulgence.
Strawberry ice cream pairs nicely with tart cherry sorbet
FIND THE RECIPES ON THE FOLLOWING PAGES
Food www.eatmagazine.ca JULY | AUGUST 2012
Flavour the c fresh strawb purée.
ossing a carton of ice cream in your shopping cart might be second nature any time of year, but making your own is pure summer indulgence. If you’re wondering if it’s worth the effort, you’ve probably never tasted homemade ice cream.
Taste, pure and simple, is the best reason for making ice cream, but creativity comes a close second. For those willing to stray from a recipe, making it yourself can spark your imagination with endless possibilities. After all, ice cream is but a cool ivory canvas, waiting to be flavoured with your favourite ingredients. You’ll be happy to know electric ice cream makers transform chilled liquid into frozen dessert with a flick of a switch. The process is simple: a canister is placed in the freezer until frozen, then transferred to a chamber in the ice cream maker. A custard (for ice cream) or fruit juice (for sorbet) is poured into the canister, into which a paddle is inserted. The paddle—the workhorse of the operation—rotates, scraping the sides of the frozen canister, aerating the liquid, rendering it smooth and free of ice crystals. In 20 to 30 minutes, you’ve got summer in a frosty bowl. You can, of course, make low-tech frozen desserts without any equipment whatsoever. It takes a bit more patience, but any custard, sweetened fruit purée or yogurt can be frozen in a shallow tray and agitated, now and then, until firm and frosty. Fruit purées are easily churned with a fork; creamy custards require a sturdy spoon and a bit more muscle. Both options are delicious, but an ice cream maker provides a much smoother texture. If you opt for an ice cream machine (you can get a decent 2 quart model for about $100), be warned, you’ll be looking for excuses to plug it in: too many berries in the garden, last year’s frozen peaches, leftover melon. It won’t take much to dream up your own chilly concoctions. I’ll pour just about anything into my ice cream maker: crème fraîche with candied ginger; pureed honeydew and cucumber with lime; grapefruit juice infused with rosemary; lemon yogurt and lavender; raspberries with chocolate truffles, coconut milk and mango; chai tea makes a great sorbet … don’t get me started! I’ve included a recipe for a classic French ice cream, a rich egg custard base dyed pink with crushed strawberries, and another version tinted mocha with a potent coffee syrup. Cream is happy with any flavour, so use this base recipe as a starting point for your own creations. Sorbets make light desserts and refreshing palate cleansers that only sound uppity. My recipe for a tart cherry sorbet is spiked with a splash of balsamic vinegar. Try serving sorbets and ice cream together—rich and creamy ice cream plays nicely with sharp and icy sorbet. You can’t have ice cream without cookies, so try your hand at one of the most delicate cookies imaginable: tuiles (pronounced tweel), meaning tile in French, a nod to its curved tile shape. The cookies are made by smearing a paper-thin batter onto a parchment-lined tray and baking until golden-edged. The cookies are then peeled off the parchment, piping hot, and rolled or draped onto a rolling pin or bottle until cool and crisp. After your first few tuiles, you’ll learn to shape them without scorching your fingertips. Making ice cream has been a treasured summer tradition for thousands of years, perhaps starting when an enterprising Persian mixed rosewater and snow for a tasty royal treat in 400 B.C. More recently, your great grandmother probably toiled with a hand-cranked wooden ice cream bucket. But today’s machines make the job pure pleasure. Discover the flavour of pure, old-fashioned ice cream this summer. Your family will thank you.
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Plan ahead: The custard must be thoroughly chilled before pouring into the frozen ice cream canister. If you have the freezer space, store the canister there so it’s ready when you want it. (It takes about 24 hours to freeze the canister.)
For the Custard 1½ cups whole milk 1½ cups 35% cream 8 egg yolks ¾ cup sugar, plus more to taste if adding a tart fruit purée. Keep in mind that cold mutes flavours, so the custard will taste sweeter at room temperature. A bowl of ice water A strainer Pour the milk and cream in a medium-sized saucepan until the mixture just begins to boil. Remove from heat. In a medium bowl, whisk the egg yolks with the sugar. Add about ¾ cup of the warm milk and cream mixture to the egg yolks and whisk until well combined. Slowly pour the yolk mixture into the saucepan with the remaining milk and cream mixture and bring to a bare simmer, whisking continuously, being careful not to bring to a boil. The custard is ready when the mixture thickens and lightly coats the back of a spoon. Pour the mixture through a strainer into a bowl or pitcher. To cool the mixture quickly, place the bowl or pitcher into a larger bowl filled with ice. Cover the custard with plastic wrap and place in the fridge until well chilled. Pour the mixture into a frozen canister and freeze according to manufacturer’s instructions. CONT’D ON NEXT PAGE
EAT MAGAZINE JULY | AUGUST 2012
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For strawberry ice cream: Flavour the custard with 2½ cups of strawberry purée, thoroughly chilled; 3½ cups of fresh strawberries; or 4 cups of frozen strawberries, which equals about 2½ cups of purée.
For coffee ice cream: Pour ¼ cup of good quality instant coffee into a small bowl. Moisten the coffee with 1 Tbsp warm water, adding more water as necessary to create a syrup consistency. Strain the mixture. Flavour the custard with the coffee syrup to taste, a few teaspoons at a time. You won’t need all the syrup, it is very concentrated. Leftover syrup keeps well in the refrigerator until you’re ready to make your next batch.
Sour Cherry Sorbet Plan ahead: The sweetened fruit juice must be thoroughly chilled before pouring into the frozen ice cream canister. This recipe calls for fruit juice but you can also use a fruit purée (which includes the flesh of the fruit). 2 cups sugar 2 cups water 2 cups cherry juice* from fresh or frozen sour cherries, thoroughly chilled You will need about 3 pounds of cherries—if you don’t have sour cherries, use sweeter varieties, adjusting the sugar accordingly 1 - 3 tsp balsamic vinegar Note: Balsamic vinegar works well with sour cherries, but use it sparingly with other varieties. In a small saucepan, completely dissolve the sugar in the water over medium-low heat. Cool the syrup, then transfer to the refrigerator until completely chilled. (You won’t need all the syrup; leftover syrup can be stored in the refrigerator until the next time you make sorbet.) Combine the chilled cherry juice with ¾ cup of the chilled syrup; add balsamic vinegar to taste, one teaspoon at a time. Adjust the syrup according to taste. Pour the mixture into a frozen canister and freeze according to manufacturer’s instructions. * A potato ricer is a handy tool for extracting juice from pitted cherries. Just be sure you’re not wearing white!
Tuile Cookies Makes about 20 cookies, depending on the size. 4 oz powdered sugar 4 oz unsalted butter, room temperature 4 egg whites, room temperature 4 oz flour Preheat oven to 360°F. Prepare a baking sheet lined with parchment or a non-stick baking liner such as Silpat. The ingredients can be mixed by hand or with an electric mixer. In a medium bowl, combine the softened butter with the powdered sugar and mix until smooth. Add the egg whites and stir until combined. Add the flour, mixing until a smooth batter is formed. Cover the bowl and refrigerate for 1 hour. Using an offset spatula, smear six rounds, approximately 4 inches in diameter, onto a prepared baking sheet. (If you add too many at a time, you won’t be able to shape them all while they are still hot and pliable.) Bake until the tuiles are golden-edged, about 6 to 8 minutes. Again using an offset spatula, carefully peel the hot cookies off the baking sheet and drape them onto a rolling pin. With a clean tea towel (to protect your fingers) gently press and shape the warm cookie around the rolling pin. When the cookie has cooled, it will be crisp. Repeat with remaining batter. Warm cookies can also be rolled like cigars or placed in empty muffin tins and shaped into edible containers.
2524 Estevan Ave. Victoria BC V8R 2S7
´7DVWHRI6SDLQµ-XO\-21 ´7DVWHRI&KLOHµ$XJXVW-25 $39* - 4 course wine & food tasting Launch night with Stuart Brown: Tuesday July 17th & Tuesday Aug 21st, 7pm
For More Information or to Reserve, Call Today
ph: 250-592-7424 ~ paprika-bistro.com dinner ~ monday to saturday from 5:30pm
www.eatmagazine.ca JULY | AUGUST 2012
farms t h a t feed u s
Blue-Chip Berries Ruby Red Farms’ stellar blueberries are grown and harvested with exquisite care. By Rebecca Baugniet
e ﬁrst time I tasted a Ruby Red blueberry was in the dead of winter. e pretty blue bag was an unexpected gi in my organic box, and when I looked at it closely, I was happily surprised to ﬁnd that the frozen blueberries inside hailed from a local farm.
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EAT MAGAZINE JULY | AUGUST 2012
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Know Your Berry grower — by Rebecca Baugniet
t didn’t take long for my family to plow through that first 340-gram bag. Berries in the winter are always a treat, but there was undeniably something special about these berries. They weren’t like other frozen berries that have the disturbing tendency to turn to mush as soon as they encounter warm air. These berries had integrity. They could thaw and keep their shape. They could be picked up, in large quantities, by little fingers, without turning said fingers, mouths and everything else within reach purple. They could be folded into muffin batter without turning that purple either. And, most important, the taste was amazing. So amazing that I quickly developed a new, healthy addiction. I needed to restock, and fast.Luckily, the search for more was brief. I did not need to go further than my local Thrifty Foods to find a full shelf of the little blue bags. The berries have occupied a regular spot in my freezer drawer ever since, and I have been impressed by the consistent high quality of the product – something any berry connoisseur can appreciate. I was also amazed that a small-scale farming operation on the Peninsula could make its seasonal product available year-round. I knew that one day I would have to visit the farm that produced these little blue gems and find out what made the Ruby Red berries so exceptional. This past spring I got to make that visit and had the chance to ask owner why exactly his berries tasted so good. It took a while for him to find his answer. He began, as any proud parent does, listing off the particular qualities of each variety. The Reka is a variety patented in New Zealand that’s fast to get into production and ripens early in the season, with a tart, slightly citrusy flavour. The Duke is a giant. These big, beautiful berries are sweeter than the Reka, with almost a hint of bubble gum on the palate. Then he told me the history of the farm. The research began in the 1990s when his wife, Ruby Commandeur, and he began dreaming of buying a farm and living a rural life. Approaching farming with backgrounds in business meant the couple took their time before settling on a location and crop, looking at several properties up-island and examining the finances of various farming operations. Mishchenko laughed as he remembered how all that research “took the fantasy out of the picture.” With the groundwork laid, the hard work began. The couple purchased 20 acres of fertile but fallow farmland from UVic in 1999 and felt that the decision to go organic was a “no-brainer,” setting out the infrastructure to become certified through the Pacific Agricultural Certification Society (PACS). The perimeter of the property is a dense hedgerow, which shelters the land while providing a natural habitat for the large population of honeybees that pollinate the blueberry plants. Another boon for the crop has been a neighbouring farm that grows beneficial insects for agricultural purposes. Stray ladybugs pitch in with aphid control for the 12,000 blueberry bushes that fill the fields. When I visited, the bushes were in bloom, with honeybees buzzing everywhere. Half the rows had been freshly weeded, the others waiting their turn. Mishchenko then explained how Ruby Red Farm is much more than just a business, and this is what has motivated him to keep up the farm in the face of personal tragedy—his wife Ruby passed away suddenly of heart failure in April of this year. Ruby Commandeur’s contribution to the local food scene was not limited to her work as a farmer. As a North Saanich councillor, she was a strong voice for protecting farmland, an advocate for local food security, and served as the North Saanich Council Representative for the Peninsula Agricultural Commission. She also had the magic touch when it came to harvesting the berries, knowing intuitively when they should be picked, understanding that as each blossom is pollinated at a different time, each berry will achieve peak ripeness on its own schedule. Picking instructions change daily throughout the season, with specific notes on such details as the hue at the front and back of each berry. And that seems to be where the answer to my question lies. Mishchenko tells me that certainly the care and attention to the health of the soil and the pruning contribute to the quality, but ultimately, you have to know when to pick the berries so they taste their best.
Perfectly placed in the South Okanagan
erfectly placed on rich South Okanagan farmland, Tinhorn Creek overlooks the old gold mining creek that is the winery’s namesake. We are environmental stewards of 150 acres of vineyards: “Diamondback” on the Black Sage Bench, and “Tinhorn Creek” on the Golden Mile Bench. Both provide us with the fruit to craft the superb, terroir driven wine that we’re known for. Our top tier Oldfield Series represents the finest of each vintage.
Ruby Red Farms certified organic blueberries are available fresh from the farm stand or at Moss St. Market in season, in the frozen foods section of select Vancouver Island grocery stores and organic box delivery services such as Spud.ca Visit the website for more details. Ruby Red Farms 11121 Rosborough Rd., North Saanich, BC 250-655-3368, www.rubyredfarms.com
www.eatmagazine.ca JULY | AUGUST 2012
Warm Land Festival This fall, more than a dozen Cowichan wineries celebrate the distinctive wines of this fertile region. By Sylvia Weinstock
n the spirit of “co-opetition” (mutually beneficial cooperative competition), the owners of 15 wineries in the Cowichan region have banded together this year to form the planning committee for the eighth annual Cowichan Wine and Culinary Festival. The festival, which runs from September 8 to 16, will be twice as long as last year’s four-day festival and will showcase enticing events at numerous venues in the fertile Cowichan Valley.
The move will make the festival a more exciting, wide-ranging experience for visitors, says Alison Philp, co-owner of Damali Lavender Farm & Winery, and communications spokesperson for this year’s festival. “The festival has really evolved to another level this year,” she says. “Our website (wines.cowichan.net) is constantly being updated as each winery confirms their festival events.” A map and printable brochure on the website details a wine-touring loop that includes all the wineries taking part in the festivities. The wineries are also open to the public year-round. The loop includes Twenty Two Oaks Winery, Averill Creek Vineyards, Blue Grouse Vineyards, Cherry Point Estate Wines & Bistro, Damali Lavender Farm, Winery and B&B, Deol Family Estate Winery, Enrico Winery & Vineyards, Glenterra Vineyards and Thistle Café, Godfrey-Brownell Vineyards, Merridale Ciderworks, Bistro & Spa, Rocky Creek Winery, Silverside Farm & Winery, Unsworth Vineyards and Amusé Bistro, Venturi-Schulze Vineyards, and Zanatta Winery, Vineyard and Vinoteca Restaurant. This is an impressive group of wineries that have produced many award-winning wines.
The committee is partnering with hotels and tour companies to encourage people to expand their wine country experience to a two- or three-day getaway. “The wineries really want to promote the pleasure of touring visits from April to October,” says Philp. “The festival is like the grand finale to a season of touring this area, which has worldclass chefs, stunning views and award-winning wines,” explains Linda Holford, committee member and co-owner of Rocky Creek Winery. “It is our way of saying ‘thank you’ to our loyal visitors. This festival isn’t under one tent, it’s an all-encompassing experience of formal and informal food and wine events in different venues. The Cowichan Valley has a lot of spirit and heart,” adds Holford. “Sustainability isn’t just about growing practices; it’s about growing community spirit, working with the community and promoting eco-tourism.”
EAT MAGAZINE JULY | AUGUST 2012
“It’s in all of our best interests for winery owners to join together to promote the bounty of this region,” says Philp. In mid-July, a brochure listing the festival’s wine and culinary events will be distributed to liquor stores and other venues. Festival-goers can connect to Facebook and Twitter updates through the website. There will be many free events and numerous special ticketed events during the festival, including a Grape Stomp at the Cowichan Exhibition on September 8. At EAT’s press time (in early May) the committee was seeking culinary partners to enrich the festival experience. Wine lovers will have many varietals to choose from: Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris, Gewürztraminer, Chardonnay (Beaujolais Blanc-style), Gamay Noir (Beaujolais Rougestyle), and Nouveau Gamay (Beaujolais Nouveau-style). The region’s wineries have a unique take on fruit wines, such as blackberry wine and rhubarb lavender wine, and have become well-known for their sparkling wines. Some wineries also produce vodka, brandy and artisanal vinegars. This vibrant wine and culinary destination is 45 minutes north of Victoria and 45 minutes south of Nanaimo. The late James Barber called it “The Provence of the North.” Touring the region enables visitors to meet the devoted owners who operate these small, family-run wineries and taste their exceptional products. “The Cowichan Valley microclimate gives our wines their unique flavour profile,” says the enthusiastic Holford. “Visitors from all over the world remark on the warm welcome they receive when they visit our wineries. During last year’s festival, we had over 800 visitors a day. It is a great opportunity to experience this young, emerging wine region.” For locations, bookings and ticket information, check out www.wines.cowichan.net in July. All the wineries will be open regular hours during the festival. If you can’t wait for fall to sip and feast in the Cowichan Valley, the hospitable owners of these mid-island vineyards welcome you to enjoy spectacular views, great food and award-winning wines on a summer day or for an extended stay. It’s a trip that will please all of your senses. For those who would like to do a little advanced research, Island Wineries of British Columbia, written by the writers of EAT magazine, has an extensive section on Cowichan Valley wineries. The award-winning book can be purchased online from the publisher, Touchwood Editions, at your favourite bookstore, wine shop or Island winery or through iTunes as an eBook.
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www.eatmagazine.ca JULY | AUGUST 2012
liquid assets —by Larry Arnold RED WINE Arrowleaf Cellars Pinot Noir 2010, Okanagan * $19.00-21.00 What a delightful find. Very fine with a lovely Pinot nose, delicate and aromatic with subtle cherry and earth nuances. On the palate the wine is mouthfilling with a soft, silky texture but no heaviness or fat. There is some tannin on the long, savory finish that just keeps going. Great value. Muac 2010, Spain * $21.00-23.00 Muac is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon (30%), Manto Negre (35%) and Callet (35%), from the Spanish island of Mallorca. The Cabernet is an old friend but the other grapes offer flavours you don’t find elsewhere. It is a wine that is at once fine yet rustic with a sun-baked, earthy ripeness, medium to full bodied with bramble and spice flavours and a good chewy finish.
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Lan Crianza Rioja 2006, Spain* $25.00-27.00 This Crianza was awarded 90 points and ranked #44 in the Wine Spectator’s Top 100 for 2010. To say the 2006 Lan Crianza is really good is an understatement. Silky smooth with sumptuous cherry, spice and anise flavours and a light tannic structure. Worth the effort to seek out a bottle or two.
WHITE WINE Tinhorn Creek Gewurztraminer 2011, Okanagan* $18.00-20.00 Simple, fresh and youthful - even understated, with none of those flagrant, overthe-top qualities that the variety tends towards. This is textbook Gew without the fat and residual sugar. It is luscious and ethereal at the same time with muted spice and lively acidity. Delicious by itself.
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Arrowleaf Cellars Pinot Gris 2011, Okanagan* $18.00-20.00 Light and seductive, with a delicate floral nose and a soft creamy texture, with good fruit, some residual sweetness and a crisp, refreshing finish! Delicious. Hester Creek Pinot Blanc 2011, Okanagan (+467316) $16.00-18.00 Located on the “Golden Mile” just outside of Oliver, Hester Creek has some of the oldest vines in the Okanagan. Altogether delicious with lots of character! Fresh and lively with green apple, peach and melon flavours, soft acidity and a lovely dry finish. Pentâge Winery Pinot Gris 2011, Okanagan* $21.00-23.00 Light peach in colour, akin to the hue of champagne. The nose is not quite as subtle - ripe ample perfume, with the smells of forgotten fruit lying in the afternoon warmth. Full bodied and firmly structured with good acidity. A real stunner! Intrique Wines Riesling 2010, Okanagan* $17.00-19.00 This is classic Riesling, very floral with subtle mineral nuances. It is as fresh as wine gets, light in body, light in alcohol, with a burst of bright acidity and sweet juicy fruit flavours..
Rosé Chat-en-Oeuf Rosé 2010, France (+823229) $13.00-15.00 Believe me when I tell you the world looks better after a glass or two of a salmonhued rosé. Made from Grenache and Syrah grapes sourced from the endless vineyards of le Midi, this hearty little rosé is dry, absolutely fresh and utterly delicious. Clos du Soleil Rosé 2011, Similkameen* $18.00-20.00 We had several bottles of this hearty BC rosé over dinner the other night and was amazed how quickly those bottles disappeared. The wine is delicious, something to be slurped rather than sipped. Made from 100% Cabernet Sauvignon, it is full-bodied with fresh raspberry, watermelon and vanilla flavours. Very juicy with crisp acidity and a lip-smacking, dry finish that will keep you coming back for another swallow. La Vieille Ferme Cotes-du-Ventoux Rosé 2010, France (+263640) $14.0016.00 Some in the biz consider a glass of rosé a lovely way to celebrate the division between day and night, “a cold explosion of deliciousness upon a day-old palate.” I concur! This tasty delight from the Ventoux is dry, soft and full of charm, with abundant fruit and richness.
EAT MAGAZINE JULY | AUGUST 2012
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first look The Clay Pigeon Victoria can welcome another exciting new eatery to the downtown food scene. The Clay Pigeon, situated within Blanshard Street's foodie strip (Broughton to Pandora), opened two weeks ago to a much-anticipated reception. The small but roomy café centres around a well-stocked bar with 3 beers and Prosecco on tap. Behind the bar in the kitchen, executive chef Genevieve Laplante - previously of Sips Artisan Bistro cooks up her brilliantly unfussy cuisine for breakfast, lunch and dinner. "Comfort classics" were the inspiration behind the menu, conceptualized by owners Jeffrey Weatherhead, Morgan Hradecky, and Jennifer Hobbins and re-interpreted by Laplante. There are a few international tributes, like the Czech knedliky, a nod to Hradecky's homeland, and classics like the Reuben sandwich but made with housecorned bison tongue. "We wanted playful, not pretentious", explains Hradecky, noting their revival of what he calls "80's classics" such as devilled eggs and escargot. Oh, and don't miss the Kale Caesar salad. Vegetable haters will surely find themselves converted; among her many other talents, Laplante has actually found a way to make a raw kale salad that appeals to a fussy 2 year old's palate. That's some serious skill. Big one-bowl breakfasts like ratatouille, beans and lardons, and braised beef are served with two poached eggs on top and focaccia toast, with the option to add housemade sausage or maple bacon. All meats come from Two Rivers, and eggs from Farmer Ben's in Duncan. Besides the unique menu items and convenient location, the reasonable prices make The Clay Pigeon all the more delightful. Many items, like the sandwiches, are offered a la carte with the option of sides for an extra charge, making an affordable takeaway lunch for as little as $7. In fact, the priciest item on the dinner menu is a flatiron steak with caramelized onion tart, blue cheese, and broccoli for $19. So what's the meaning behind the name? "It's pretty much meaningless," says Hradecky. "I like ambiguity, and for some reason the words The Clay Pigeon had a nice ring to them…then we realized that the anagram T.C.P. can also stand for Taking Care of People, so that's kind of become our mission slogan". —Deanna Ladret The Clay Pigeon, 1002 Blanshard St., Victoria, BC (250) 590-6657.
Rocky Creek Winery Raise your glass for a taste of summer Only 45 minutes from Victoria
ENJOY OUR WINE CAFE GORGEOUS GARDENS & AWARD WINNING WINES
Jam Café The space once occupied by The Herald Street Caffe has gone through several incarnations since the legendary restaurant closed its doors years ago. Now, with the recent opening of Jam Café, the room seems to be getting its groove back. The decor in Jam might seem vaguely familiar: salvaged window and door mosaic up one wall, nostalgia perched on rafters… probably because you've seen it across the street at Union Pacific Coffee Company. Owners Jim and Candy Walmsley decided to expand their business by opening the breakfast/lunch spot, moving the family one step closer to total culinary monopoly of Herald Street. A happy takeover, indeed. Jam is a little lighter and brighter (Candy describes Jam as "the daughter I never had"). The roomy space has roughed-up wood floors, high ceilings and whitewashed walls with minimal decor, save for an eye-catching vintage schoolroom map of Canada, a handsome pair of antlers and a traffic light over the kitchen hallway. The Walmsley's three young boys were clearly the inspiration behind the café's playful menu. Items like Green Eggs and Ham, The Turkey Lurkey, and the B.E.L.T.C.H. Sandwich reflect the attitude of a cool, family friendly eatery that certainly doesn't take itself too seriously. A breakfast interpretation of the corn dog, called The Three Pigs, features three skewered breakfast sausages dipped in pancake batter and deep fried, served - thankfully - on a generous heap of fresh ripe fruit. A nod to southern cuisine, The Harrison is a buttermilk biscuit with sunny side up eggs and sausage gravy. Red Velvet Pancakes come in a stack of three, topped with a wobbling heap of whipped cream and red sprinkles. The café also serves lunch after 11am, with items like Buttermilk Fried Chicken, Mac n' Cheese Grilled Cheese, and something called The Angry Bird - a bacon-topped meatloaf-wrapped hard-boiled egg (I'd be angry too if that was me). A liquor license is pending, but in the meantime, there are plenty of non-alcoholic drinks to choose from, including JJ Bean Coffee, Fizzy Lavender Lemonade, Aranciatta Rossa and Coke in a bottle. —Deanna Ladret Jam Café, 542 Herald Street, Victoria, BC (778) 440-4489 DRINKING Guide: How to use our purchasing information. *Asterisks denote wines that are only available at the winery or select private liquor stores. Some may be in limited quantities. All other wines are available through BC Liquor Stores – visit www.bcliquorstores.com or download the free BC LiquorStores iPhone App for locations and availability. Prices may vary.
www.eatmagazine.ca JULY | AUGUST 2012
what to drink with that DRINK editor Treve Ring asks local wine experts how they would approach pairing dishes and flavours. This month’s challenge is to match wine to local summer barbecue: Grilled Bison Strip Loin. (Bonus pairing: Watermelon Salad.) O U R
E X P E R T S
Ernest Sargent (ES), Sommelier & Educator After receiving his ISGuild certification in 2006 and his Spanish Wine Educator certification in 2008 Ernest found his true vocation in the retail wine world working at both private and government stores. He can currently be found working part time for the BCLDB and leading the popular wine seminars at C-One in Victoria - whenever he can break away from his surveying career that actually pays the bills (and for his cellar).
Dave Smith (DS), Buyer, Everything Wine Dave started with a life-changing wine course with the CIA in Napa Valley, California. Over the years he has gone from managing boutique wine stores to his current role as buyer for Everything Wine. Years of professional study and work in a retail environment give Dave a unique perspective and understanding of today's wine drinker. Visiting wine regions is a perk of his job that has instilled a deep appreciation of the work that goes into producing this beautiful product.
Grilled Bison Strip loin, fava beans, braised red beets, juniper jus
perfect balance of structure and fruit to allow the bison to express itself.
ES To me this just cries out for a big gamey red with good tannic structure, plush texture and some red fruit flavours. The first wine that springs to mind is a good vintage of Chateauneuf du Pape (CdP). A CdP has sufficient tannins to tame the Bison and fava beans but also has bright fruit flavours along with some garrigue (earthy and herbal) elements that will work well with the beets and juniper jus. A New World alternative would be a BC Cabernet Franc from a warmer vintage - all the same features of the CdP and you can celebrate local. In addition, both of these wines have the richness/roundness to smooth the texturally lean edge of the bison.
DT Hands down, Syrah. The earthiness of the beets and fava beans instantly draw me to the Rhone Valley. The structure and meatiness of a Saint-Joseph or a Cornas would support the heartiness of bison. Aromas of pepper, lavender, blackberries, leather and smoke would compliment the grilled flavours of the meat. These wines often show roasted herbs and garrigue that would shine through alongside the juniper jus. An example with a little bottle age would be a bonus - but if a current release is what's available, having the time and vessel to decant the wine would be beneficial. If New World wines are more your taste, I would gravitate to a coastal California Syrah, say from Paso Robles or from the north coast's Mendocino County area. Another consideration would be venturing south of the equator and getting into a Syrah from Chile's Casablanca.
DS This was an interesting experiment and after considering 7 or 8 different wines, it all came down to three. A California Cabernet would make an interesting match but the astringency of the tannins in the cabernet would be a bit pronounced due to the lack of fattiness in this meat. So it would be decent choice to be sure but know what you’re getting. An Aussie Grenache would also show well. The soft, decadent fruits of the grenache allow the flavours of the meat to blend with the wine. In the end though this versatile meat will find an amazing match in a Tuscan red. The Sangiovese base offers the
Watermelon Salad, feta, arugula, olive oil ES I have to go with a rosé - after all, what says summer more than a beautiful glass of pink? I recommend a Grenache based rosé with its peppery accent to harmonize with the arugula. In addition, this wine has enough acidity to work with the feta and the refreshing flavour in
David Tremblay (DT), Sommelier, Shangri-La Vancouver In 2000 David Tremblay moved to the Okanagan Valley and began to discover his love for wine. He enrolled in classes with the ISG and then moved to Vancouver, where he successfully completed the Sommelier Diploma Program. Having worked in the food and beverage industry since his teenage years, David has lived across Canada, working alongside some of Canada’s most respected chefs. Whenever time permits, David returns to the Okanagan Valley to meet and taste with winemakers. the chilled wine matches the freshness of the watermelon. Another winner would be a Gruner Veltliner - back to the spice (in this case, white pepper) for the arugula and the wine's bracing mineral freshness with its acidic kick will work seamlessly with the rest of the salad components. DS This is not the easiest pairing but if you persevere you will be rewarded! The sweetness of the watermelon can quickly strip away the fruit of wines like Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay and even simple sparkling wine leaving a fairly acidic and bland pairing. We tried multiple wines a hot sunny weekend in an attempt to find the right match and the hands-down winner was Moscato. The sweetness and liveliness of the Moscato complemented the juicy sweetness of the watermelon. DT Watermelon packs a fresh punch but it's light and I wouldn't want to impose upon it with oak presence. There are so many ways you could go with this one, and more than a few white wines come to mind - but a light-bodied dry Rosé would be my pick. Perhaps a Garanacha rosado from Spain's Navarra region - or a Grenache based rosé blend from either Provence or the Languedoc in southern France. Light pink in colour with bright raspberry and strawberry on the nose, one of these rosés would complement the fresh, delicate flavours of this dish, without being too much.
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EAT MAGAZINE JULY | AUGUST 2012
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The Buzz VICTORIA: It’s that time of year again. The season when I am continually seduced by produce. Farmers’ markets, country road stands, local independent grocery stores, all these places beckon with their overflowing cornucopia of fresh, ripe offerings. Glossy eggplants, fragrant tomatoes, peaches, cherries, blackberries… you know what I’m talking about. Here in BC, the summer months offer us an embarrassment of edible riches, and it’s a challenge not to come home with more than you really need. If the bounty is piling up in your kitchen too, and you’re in need of coping strategies, Cook Culture has a superb line-up of seasonal classes; Bountiful Berries (July 9) and Local Harvest (July 17) with chef Heidi Fink, Addictive Ice Cream (Jul 10) and Perfect Pies (Jul 24) with chef Megan Hennis and In-Depth Canning and Preserving with chef David Mincey (July 11). (cookculture.com) Need backup? Send the kids off to The London Chef for Cooking Camp, offered throughout July and August, with sessions geared towards both younger children and teens. (thelondonchef.com) Speaking of cooking schools, it is with a sad heart (and palate) that we say au revoir to French Mint, Denise Marchessault’s delightful home-based teaching kitchen in Broadmead. We wish Denise and her family all the best in their next chapter, and are looking forward to whatever she cooks up on the Lower Mainland. The downtown Artisan Wine Shop has also relocated, but only around the corner, to the Broughton St. space that was the former home of the Wine Barrel. In early June, the Gatsby Mansion Restaurant, across from Victoria’s Inner Harbour on Belleville Street, announced that it had reopened under executive chef D’Arcy Ladret. Since graduating from the Camosun College Professional Cook Training Program in 1997, Ladret has worked at some of the most well-known kitchens around Vancouver Island, including the Sooke Harbour House, The Sidney Pier Resort & Spa, and most recently, as executive chef at Royal Roads University. “We are presenting the best of our region throughout the seasons and are delighted to be featuring many local producers on our menus,” says Ladret. These features include Saanich Organics spring greens, Qualicum Beach scallops, wild BC Morel mushrooms, wild Pacific Coho salmon, Island Farmhouse poultry, Salt Spring Island cheeses, and locally smoked and cured meats. Menu items range from $10 - $18 for appetizers, and $21 - $34 for dinner main courses. Lunch features dishes ranging from $10 $22. The Gatsby Mansion Restaurant will open for Lunch from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., Afternoon Tea from 2 to 4 p.m. and dinner from 5 to 8 p.m. Reservations can be made by calling (250) 388-9191. James Bay also became home to a new frozen yogurt destination in early June. Tutti Frutti is an US brand, with 580 locations around the world. In addition to the dairy-based frozen yogurt, Tutti Frutti also offers non-GMO soy bean-based flavour choices. 10% of soybean yogurt sales is donated to their Real Green Project, which helps feed children in need. In other dairy news, local inventors Dennis Atkinson and Andrew Offord have made it easier to pour your morning cereal milk with their new product “Capella” – a specialized plastic spout that fits onto your two and four litre milk jugs - developed with the help of Camosun Mechanical Engineering instructor/researcher Imtehaze Heerah. The Capella product retails for $2 and is now sold in Thrifty Foods stores around Victoria. A new upscale natural and organic market is coming to the Cook Street Village, scheduled to open in August. Mother Nature’s Market and Deli (mothernaturesbc.ca ) will sell natural foods, nutritional supplements, bulk foods, organic produce and have a full deli featuring all-natural, raw and vegan items as well as breads, meats, meal solutions and snacks. The store will feature daily product tastings and has plans to host celebrity chef events throughout the year. Locally owned, the store will also stock glutenfree and non-allergen products as well as source a wide selection of ethically-raised and/or ethicallycaught, non- medicated meats, fish and poultry. Products with artificial ingredients, additives, preservatives, genetically modified organisms (GMOs), or herbicides and pesticides will not be sold. The Hotel Grand Pacific’s Jordan Mieczkowski faces a long, hot summer in the kitchen as he trains to take on chefs from around the world this September. Mieczkowski will represent Canada at the Jeunes Chefs Rôtisseurs Competition in Berlin, competing against entrants from 25 other countries in a “black box” event. We wish him good luck in Germany this fall. Last but not least, congratulations to Taste festival organizer, Kathy McAree, who became a Dame D’Escoffier (BC) earlier this summer. Visit www.lesdames.ca to learn more about this organization. —Rebecca Baugniet VANCOUVER: The Burnaby neighbourhood is latest to fall prey to the Napoletana pizza craze. Cotto Enoteca Pizzeria (www.cotto.ca) is scheduled to open soon at 6011 Hastings Street. Expect Napoletana-style pizzas, housemade pastas and barrel-aged Negronis. And the doughnut craze continues…49th Parallel Coffee Roasters (www.49thparallelroasters.com) is the latest to jump on the sweet trend, with the opening of their second location at 2902 Main Street, Cont’d on the next page
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EAT MAGAZINE JULY | AUGUST 2012
which also houses Lucky’s Doughnuts (www.luckysdoughnuts.com), their in-house artisan production facility for all things fried and sweet. Edible Canada (www.ediblecanada.com) has launched their summer take-out window with a new theme—bacon. Their Coast to Coast—A Canadian Tribute to Bacon window will include takeaway dishes like bacon and duck rillette poutine, beef and bacon whistle dog, and a lobster BLT. There are even sweet options from local artisans, like Cadeaux Bakery’s bacon cinnamon sticky buns and Bella Gelateria’s bacon-chocolate gelato. Cin Cin (www.cincin.net) has a new executive chef manning the wood-fired ovens. Andrew Richardson, a native of Newcastle, England, has worked at several Michelin-starred restaurants in Europe, as well as Cioppino’s, West and Araxi in B.C. CRU Restaurant has closed its doors after a nine-year run. Owner Mark Taylor will focus his energies on his newer restaurant, Siena (www.eatsiena.com), but doesn’t rule out the small-plates awardwinner popping up at another location in the future. CRU executive chef Alana Peckham has already re-established herself as the new EC at Hart House Restaurant in Burnaby (www.harthouserestaurant.com), and has relaunched the brunch, lunch and dinner menus. Alvin Pillay, formerly of C Restaurant, Campagnolo and The Irish Heather, has joined The Donnelly Group (www.donnellygroup.ca) as development chef. He will be working with the group’s roster of chefs to revamp the menus with a new focus on simple dishes made with fresh, local and seasonal ingredients. O’Doul’s Restaurant and Bar in The Listel Hotel (www.thelistelhotel.com) has officially closed its doors. The new restaurant, under current EC Chris Whittaker, will focus on local, seasonal, sustainable, and is scheduled to open at the end of summer. A new wine region? Fort Berens Estate Winery (www.fortberens.ca) has established itself as the first winery in the Lilloet region. Their first releases include a dry 2011 Riesling with bright acidity and a crisp, 2011 Pinot Noir Rosé. Fort Berens’ 2010 Chardonnay and 2008 Meritage both recently won gold medals at the New World International Wine Competition. Look for the bottles in private wine stores and online. Restaurant house blends are the new miso aioli…Last year it was Top Table Group, with their Director’s Blend (a partnership with Laughing Stock Vineyards). Now chef Rob Feenie of Cactus Club Restaurants (www.cactusclubcafe.com) has partnered with Haywire Winery (www.haywirewinery.com) to launch Feenie Goes Haywire in both red and white blends. Available at Cactus Club locations. Also, Hawksworth Restaurant (www.hawksworthrestaurant.com) has joined forces with Cawston’s Orofino Winery (www.orofinovineyards.com) to produce the restaurant’s own H’s Blend red and white labels. The red is 100 percent Gamay, while the white is equal parts Pinot Gris and Riesling, all from the Similkameen. Available at the restaurant and Bel Café (www.belcafe.com). Earls Restaurants (www.earsl.ca) has launched a new craft beer program, showcasing artisan hops from microbreweries local to each region where restaurants are located, including B.C. and Alberta and Saskatchewan. Local B.C. breweries include Phillips, Howe Sound and Whistler Brewing companies. —Anya Levykh
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TOFINO: This season certainly got off to a good start with Feast! Tofino in May and the Tofino Food and Wine Festival in June (both EAT Magazine sponsored events). Feast! happenings ranged from dockside festivals to a 1920s inspired speakeasy (complete with inspired cocktails), a stand-up paddle boarding and fish taco adventure, a motocross and lunch event, guest chef dinners, and much more. Thanks to Kira Rogers for organizing an impressive Tofino Food and Wine Festival again this year from June 1-3. It was kicked right with an evening of BC Bubbles on Friday, June 1. This year marks the festival's 10th! From humble beginnings… It's time again for the weekly Tofino Public Market, held each Saturday during the summer on the Village Green from 10am-2pm. Along with local artisans, there are quite a few food purveyors showcasing their wares. Julie Lomenda's Six Hundred Degrees bread products, pierogis from Solidarity Snacks, fresh fruit kabobs, jam and treats, fresh produce and more are all available. (tofinopublicmarket.com) I've had the pleasure of sampling chef Clark Deutscher's barbecue on a few occasions when he guested at the Spotted Bear Bistro in Tofino. Deutscher now has his own space at Cynamoka Coffee House in Ucluelet, operating Cyn at Night starting at 4pm daily. He leases the space from the coffee house owners and offers his own take on southern barbecue, which he describes as "un-traditional housemaid BBQ." Barbecue dishes are served with housemade beans, bread, pickles and potato salad. There's brisket, ribs, pulled pork and even roast pig on the menu, as well as chicken mole, falafel, seafood Cont’d on the next page
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The Buzz curry and housemade gnocchi. Seafood dominates the appetizer menu, for those looking for more of the west coast. For those of us here, it's great to have a taste of the south just down the road in Ukee. Visit www.facebook.com/cynatnight for more information, including menus. (250)726-2449 Tofino's Wildside Grill has been a happening spot so far this year. Host Jim Catucci and his crew from You Gotta Eat Here were on site in May filming an episode at the Grill's outdoor location in the Beaches/Live to Surf parking lot (1184 Pacific Rim Hwy.). There was no word at press time on when the episode was set to air, but visit http://bit.ly/uDvsEZ for the show's schedule. Wildside's chef Jesse Blake and fisher Jeff Mikus also recently opened a second, licensed location at Long Beach Golf Course. Enjoy a Wildside fish taco, gumbo or burger after a round or after a day at the beach. Visit www.wildsidegrill.com for location and hours. Tofino Brewing Company held a one-year anniversary Brew-b-que on Saturday, May 13 at their Industrial Way location. The guys and friends were kept busy, as was Tacofino chef Cam Young, who took over the barbecue to slow roast a pig for pulled pork tacos during the event. Music was provided by Prester John's Gone featuring Dirt Country and over $2,000 was raised for the Tofino Volunteer Fire Department. Thanks to all who attended and especially to Chris, Bryan and both Daves for a great evening and a great year of craft beer. www.tofinobrewingcompany.com. Local Tofitian Paul Jarvis recently released his vegan e-cookbook entitled “Eat Awesome.” The 74page $5 download is touted as a “regular person’s
guide to eating plant-based whole foods.” I have to say the cashew cream recipe definitely makes the grade, as does the vegan risotto. Paul also shares his witty insight about everything from stocking the pantry to what to say to the questions, “Where do you get your protein?” And yes, maybe you can make friends with salad. www.eatawesome.ca. —Jen Dart OKANAGAN: Kelowna’s Gio Bean Espresso run by coffee aficionado Giovanni Lauretta (Gio) and his wife Lucy Lauretta has moved two doors down. Happily for loyal patrons, Gio Bean has doubled in size including the now sun-drenched patio perfect for people watching and enjoying an excellent latte, cappuccino or espresso. Calgary’s uber cool Knifewear specializing in Japanese knives has opened their second location in Kelowna on Pandosy Street across from the currently being built SOPA Square development. Sign up for knife skills classes or drop by and hang with the chefs. Dunn Enzies Pizza Co. has also expanded to include Milkcrate Records which serves up coffee, pies and vinyl records. This hipster joint waxes nostalgia and nothing beats an afternoon listening to vinyl records, drinking coffee and eating pie whether it be cherry, apple or pizza. Naramata/Penticton’s Misconduct Winery opens The Kitchen Bistro this July. With executive chef Abul Adame, the previous owner of Amante Bistro at the helm and a focus on Portuguese and Latin fusion, this is sure to be a must visit this summer.
Osoyoos is celebrating the opening of The Lake Village Bakery, a must for artisan hand-made breads and pastries. Local owner, Shannon Peltier apprenticed at Kelowna’s much loved Okanagan Grocery Artisan Breads before opening the bakery with her husband, Sean. Also find gourmet jams and local cheeses, making this a perfect stop before heading to a winery for a picnic of bread, cheese and wine. The Okanagan Summer Wine Festival runs from July 7th to 15th. Highlights include: the Okanagan Falls Winery Association Party in the Park at lakefront Kenyon Park on July 6th from 5pm9pm. ($50.00+), Summerland’s Okanagan Crush Pad & Memphis Blues BBQ on July 11th from 6pm-8pm ($29.00+). Kelowna’s Cedar Creek 25th Anniversary four course dinner with Vancouver’s, John Bishop on July 12th from 6:30pm to 10pm. ($125.00+) And the Similkameen Winery Association Signature BBQ King/Queen event held at the beautiful Grist Mill in Keremeos on July 14th from 5pm to 8pm. ($75.00+) Visit thewinefestivals.com or individual winery/association websites for more information. The roving culinary epicurean event, Outstanding in the Field which began in 1998 at Gabriella Café in Santa Cruz, California as a meal to connect diners, local farmers and food artisans has spread across North America to over one hundred very special long table dinners. The Okanagan’s Covert Farms with Joy Road Catering is one of only four Canadian stops and promises to be an extraordinary local food and wine celebration. Tickets: $190.00 USA dollars in-
clusive. (www.outstandinginthefield.com) This summer, enjoy a glass of wine and a summer concert at an Okanagan winery. Visit winery websites for concert dates, times and price. West Kelowna’s Mission Hill Winery hosts Lyle Lovett and Chris Isaak. Cedar Creek Winery hosts Andrew Allan and Chantal Kreviazuk. Hester Creek Winery hosts Trama and Lisa Brokop. Tinhorn Creek Vineyards hosts Said the Whale, Redeye Empire and Sloan. Many of the Okanagan wineries hold free concerts thru out the summer and East Kelowna’s Vibrant Vine plays live music every Saturday and Sunday. Finally, looking for special ingredients in the Okanagan? Try one of the ethnic specialty grocery stores: Oriental Supermarket - for all things Asian as well as inexpensive china and chopsticks. (Kelowna, 2575 Hwy 97), Valoroso Foods for all things Italian including one of the Okanagan’s best sources for imported cheeses, deli meats and olives. (1467 Sutherland Ave, Kelowna & 2441 Main Street, West Kelowna.), Mediterranean Market for all things Greek as well as imports from Italy and the Middle East (1570 Gordon Drive, Kelowna), La Cucina European Market for both Portuguese and Italian (1204 Main Street, Penticton), Tienda Mexican-Jany Lopez Latin Foods, the Okanagan’s only Mexican supermarket including fresh cactus, chilies and mole (34836 97th Street, Oliver) And T-2 Market a surprising Indian and Portuguese combined grocery store. (33846 97th Street, Oliver). —Claire Sear
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OSPREY LANE AT CHESTERMAN BEACH, TOFINO: HERE’S TO REFINED WESTCOAST CUISINE. The Pointe Restaurant at the world renowned Wickaninnish Inn features farm-fresh, organic Vancouver Island ingredients and seafood from the very waters the restaurant overlooks. For more information about this extraordinary destination, visit us online.
www.wickinn.com/restaurant.html www.eatmagazine.ca JULY | AUGUST 2012
Chardonnay [shar-dn-AY; shar-doh-NAY]
Chardonnay is proof that everything old becomes cool again.
Photo by Gary Hynes
vincabulary - By Treve Ring
After attaining a pinnacle of popularity in the late 1980s, the inevitable backlash spurned the ubiquitous ABC movement – Anything But Chardonnay. Naysayers flogged the overoaked, flabby, mass-produced wines that had been pumped out to meet consumer demand worldwide. The adaptable and hearty grape flourishes easily in most climates and conditions, and is now one of the most widely-planted grape varieties on the globe, planted in more wine regions than any other. The final results are a spectrum of flavours and styles – from sparkling to Chablis severity to Californian opulence to icewine. The Chardonnay grape itself is fairly neutral, owing a great deal of its flavour to vineyard and winemaking decisions. It’s a blank canvas for winemakers to colour and control – too oft, in the past, with overuse of wood. When oak isn’t allowed to overpower, the clean, crisp nature of the grape emerges. Cooler climates preserve this freshness and help balance the alcohol, which is naturally on the higher side. Higher altitude and latitude helps, as does aggressive pruning and canopy management. Clonal selection is key too, as there are dozens of clones, each with pros and cons to be matched to site. When yields are kept low (remember – quality over quantity always), terroir can shine through. Chardonnay especially loves limestone and chalky soils – found in abundance in the grape’s traditional and glorious homeland of Chablis and Burgundy. Don’t believe me that Chardonnay is becoming cool once again? There’s an entire celebration dedicated to it! The second annual International Cool Climate Chardonnay Celebration takes place July 20-22 in Niagara, and will showcase over 110 cool climate Chardonnays from 55 international and Canadian wineries. Thirty Ontario wineries started the International Cool Climate Chardonnay Association as a not-for-profit group dedicated to reinstating Chardonnay’s dignity. According to organizers, “It’s time for Chardonnay to return to centre stage. It’s time for the re-birth of Cool.” www.coolchardonnay.org.
Meyer Family Vineyards
Champagne Pierre Gimonnet & Fils 'Cuis
‘Arthur’ Chardonnay 2009
McLean Creek Road Vineyard Chardonnay 2010
1er Cru' Blanc de Blancs NV Brut
‘Wild Ferment’ Chardonnay 2010
‘La Pierrelée’ 2009 ORIGIN: AC Chablis, Burgundy, France THE WALLET: $26-29 REFERENCE: +359844 ALCOHOL: 12.5% abv TASTE: Accessible bottle of Chablis from a choice site La Pierrelée vineyard, hugging the River Serein, on Kimmeridgian clay and limestone. Exotic jasmine and floral musk mingles with crisp Asian pear, leesy minerality and zingy lemon zest.
ORIGIN: Okanagan Falls, Okanagan Valley, BC THE WALLET: $35-38 REFERENCE: Private Stores* ALCOHOL: 13.5% abv TASTE: All the alluring aromas of apple pie – weighty slow baked apple, creamy butter and brioche, toasted cinnamon and nutmeg spice, and lingering honey. Mouthwatering freshness from first sniff to last sip.
ORIGIN: AC Champagne, France THE WALLET: $64-75 REFERENCE: +356675 ALCOHOL: 12.5% abv TASTE: Blanc de Blanc Champagnes are 100% Chardonnay, prized for their focus, austerity and longevity. This elegant Grower’s Champers is crisp green apple, mineral, white flowers and lemon tart, with a clean, pure delivery and lengthy finish.
ORIGIN: Dundee Hills, Willamette Valley, Oregon THE WALLET: $33-37 REFERENCE: +231944 ALCOHOL: 14.1% abv TASTE: I drink this and I think ballet. Graceful acacia blossoms and creamy French perfume overlay a muscular body strung with taut, lively acid. A big, hefty wine in a polished and graceful package.
ORIGIN: Casablanca, Chile THE WALLET: $22-25 REFERENCE: +545392 ALCOHOL: 13.5% abv TASTE: Wild, indigenous yeasts contribute to the expressive complexities of this wine. Potent toasty popcorn, sweet Meyer lemon, pear skin and herbal honey swirl kinetically with creamy lees and end with a crisp mineral finish.
ORIGIN: Margaret River, Western Australia, Australia THE WALLET: $30-34 REFERENCE:+324079 ALCOHOL: 12.5% abv TASTE: Hazelnuts dominate – from the toasted nut entrance aromas to the lingering nut shell finish. In between, ripe pear, subtle spice, cream and spiced apple are well knit with the round body and fresh acidity.
*Asterisks denote wines that are only available at the winery or select private liquor stores. Some may be in limited quantities. All other wines are available through BC Liquor Stores – visit www.bcliquorstores.com or download the free BC LiquorStores iPhone App for locations and availability. Prices may vary.
EAT MAGAZINE JULY | AUGUST 2012
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Everything is coming up Rosés – a peek at local pinks Rosés come in various styles – from bone dry and mineral wealthy, to semi- and fully sweet, to sparkling. And any black grape can be used to make a pink one, the final result carrying through the grape’s intrinsic flavours and aromas. Rosé wines can be made in three basic ways: Saignée – or bleeding. The winemaker will bleed off a portion of must (unfermented juice) after only a short period of contact with the grape skins (6-48 hours). Because the colour of red wine is derived from pigments in the skins, the juice is only pink, not red. Rosés made this way include Anjou, Clairet and Cotes de Provence. Direct Pressing – directly pressing freshly harvested black grapes. A measure of colouring compounds are extracted from the skins during this process, and the winemaker uses caution to not extract too much tannin. Rosés made this way include Cotes de Provence and Languedoc. Blending – Quite rarely seen, and is forbidden by law in France, except for Champagne. Some Rosés are made by blending a small portion of red wine with a white wine. Rosés made this way include Rosé Champagne and some new world Rosés. In general, the longer the period of skin contact, the darker and more tannic the wine. To make rosé, the juice is separated from the skins relatively quickly, resulting in the pale color. Colours range from pale copper to hot pink, depending on the length of skin contact as well as the grape variety. Regardless of production or grape or style or provenance, Rosés are wines meant to be enjoyed young. The following are BC wines I’ve tasted recently, newly released and ready to be enjoyed under sunny skies. —By Treve Ring Clos du Soleil Rosé 2011, Similkameen Valley, $17.90, 12.2% - Cabernet Sauvignon Could this be my new favourite BC wine I’ve tasted this year? It’s certainly among the top. 15 year old sustainably farmed Cab Sauv vines sourced from Osoyoos have yielded a scant 390 cases of this herbal, stony, savoury beaut. Dry, with sweet raspberry, bright acid and lingering mineral notes. JoieFarm Rosé 2011, Naramata. $20.90, 12.4% - Gamay, Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier, Pinot Gris It’s not spring in my books until I’ve tasted JoieFarm Rosé. Every year the blend shifts, speaking to the season and soils (grapes are harvested from Kelowna, Skaha Bluff, Summerland and Naramata Bench). This year is a pleasant touch off-dry, with desert sage, wild strawberries and structured cherries. Fort Berens Estate Winery Rosé 2011, Lillooet, $17.99, 12.5% - Pinot Noir You read that right – Lillooet. And these aren’t trucked in grapes either – these are estate grown, specifically selected and purposefully picked for this wine. Bright pink (48 hours skin contact) and bone dry, with a saturated saline nose, jammy strawberry, candied cherry and herbal-cherry finish.
Okanagan Crush Pad Rosé NV, Summerland, $52 for 3 L box, $13.7% - Gamay The sustainably farmed Secrest Vineyard in Oliver has graced us with this lively dry Rosé with clean and pure notes of orange, savoury cherry and river rock. Serious, sans staidness. PLUS the packaging is perfect for a picnic.
Tinhorn Creek Vineyards Oldfield Series 2Bench Rosé 2011, Oliver, $22.99, 12.9% - Cabernet Franc A fairly new wine to a very established portfolio, this is the 3rd vintage of Tinhorn’s Oldfield Series Rosé. And just as previous years, it is made in limited quantities. 100% Cab Franc from the famed Black Sage Bench, this dry wine shows its parentage with black pepper, alluring bramble and savoury strawberry notes.
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Stores – visit
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De Vine Vineyards Rosé 2011, Saanich Peninsula, $16, 11.2%, Pinot Noir Only 35 cases, so move quickly because it will. This estate grown Pinot Noir exhibits wild strawberry and spice, earth and summer herbs. Lovely mouthfeel and fresh finish – and spectacular value here. Quails’ Gate Winery Rosé 2011, Kelowna, $14.99, 13% - Gamay Noir, Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris A long-time BC go-to favourite, this classic Rosé overdelivers year after year. Technically dry, but bursting with sweet strawberries, redcurrants, and watermelon. Tantalus Rosé 2011, Kelowna, $21.99, 13.2% - Pinot Meunier. I kind of have a geek crush on this wine. I mean – single vineyard sustainably farmed Pinot Meunier vines from 1985? Be still my heart! Bone dry and intense, with layers of wild raspberry, bright rhubarb and stony minerality and a lingering dried cherry finish. 8th Generation Vineyard Confidence 2011, Summerland, $22.50, 12.5% - Dunkelfelder, Pinot Gris, Syrah I adore this mid-sweet frizzante wine on the inside and out. Pink grapefruit, candied strawberries, lively bubbles and as refreshing (and fun!) as a summer run through a sprinkler. Misison Hill Family Estate Five Vineyards Rosé 2011, Kelowna, $14.99, 12% - Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon Off-dry and patio-friendly, this is another local favourite that appears as soon as the sunshine does. Sweet strawberry jam, candied cherries and zingy finish, this juicy blend is from vineyards in Oliver, Osoyoos and Naramata.
VICTORIA SPIRITS victoriaspirits.com
Visit our Distillery for tours & tastings weekends & holidays until October
www.eatmagazine.ca JULY | AUGUST 2012
of the Year ALL CANADIAN WINE CHAMPIONSHIPS
A Stor Story y in Every Ever y Bottle Winery W inery Events on the Bench all Season
NaramataBench.com naramatawines @naramatawines
EAT MAGAZINE JULY | AUGUST 2012
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When Curti he quickly di Stone, who field. “I’d ne with a chuck A Kelowna his hometow his first crop after turning beginning to The inspir was drawn to mentioned a small plots d the homeow “If they’re co When Sto minimal eco and farming planting to p a couple of s $7,000 in sta Stone work of vegetables few kilomet Kelowna Far sells through Agriculture. In its first is particularl produced 13 totiller. Although u local produc growing thei “We have comes from. on the horizo by working s During the speaker on fo through the As much a a basic lifesty into this—I j dening, he s environmen Since decid feels as if he people is [far A vocation growing pop going back t he said. Green City
Wineries W ineries
City Farmer Through the efforts of young entrepreneurs like Curtis Stone in Kelowna, urban agriculture is beginning to take root in our cities. â€”Scott Trudeau When Curtis Stone took a gamble and started his own urban farming business, he quickly discovered one doesnâ€™t need to be born with a green thumb to turn a profit. Stone, who owns Green City Acres in Kelowna, had no previous experience in the field. â€œIâ€™d never grown a vegetable in my life,â€? said the 32-year-old former musician? with a chuckle. A Kelowna native, who had been living in Montreal for several years, he returned to his hometown in 2008. By the summer of 2009, he was preparing urban farm sites for his first crop of vegetables, which he would plant the following spring. Three years after turning over his first shovel of soil, Stone is convinced urban farming is just beginning to take root. The inspiration for his business began initially through online research, where he was drawn to the ecological benefits of sustainable agriculture. Then, one of his friends mentioned a concept called SPIN (small plot intensive) farming. SPIN farms consist of small plots donated by the property owners to farmers to grow vegetables. Each week, the homeowner receives a box of fresh produce in exchange for donating their land. â€œIf theyâ€™re cool with eating seasonally, they donâ€™t need to buy produce,â€? he said. When Stone discovered he could start SPIN farming for a small investment and minimal ecological impact, he began learning as much as possible about gardening and farming methods and then took a leap of faith. He used money earned from tree planting to purchase a cooler, a Rototiller, a special bicycle he uses for deliveries and a couple of small equipment trailers he tows behind the bike. In all, he invested about $7,000 in start-up costs. Stone works full-time, employs one part-time worker and grows about 40 varieties of vegetables, tending to gardens located on eight plots of land all situated within a few kilometres from each other. He began building his business by working the Kelowna Farmersâ€™ Market and started promoting himself to local restaurants. He also sells through a member-based veggie box program called Community Supported Agriculture. In its first year, Green City Acres turned a tidy profit of $22,000â€”something Stone is particularly pleased with due to his low start-up and overhead costs. In 2011, Stone produced 13,000 pounds of food using less than 100 litres of gas to operate his Rototiller. Although urban gardening is growing in popularity, Stone feels the market for fresh, local produce remains virtually untouched, with a small percentage of people actually growing their own vegetables. â€œWe have this societal disconnect with food,â€? said Stone. â€œNo one knows where it comes from. No one knows how itâ€™s produced.â€? But he feels thereâ€™s some good news on the horizon because urban gardening principles allow anyone to grow organic food by working small land plots in the middle of a city. During the off-season, Stone travels throughout the country working as a public speaker on food-related issues. In September 2010, he was named gardener of the year through the City of Kelownaâ€™s Communities in Bloom. As much as his business continues to grow, Stone isnâ€™t looking to get rich. He prefers a basic lifestyle that isnâ€™t taxing on the environment. â€œThatâ€™s all I wanted when I got into thisâ€”I just wanted to live off the land.â€? The most rewarding aspect of urban gardening, he said, is the transformation of barren, unused land that becomes a social, environmental and economical benefit in the community. Since deciding to manage his own food production for the past three years, Stone feels as if heâ€™s proved anyone can grow their own vegetables. â€œWhat Iâ€™m showing people is [farming] is not drudgery,â€? he said. A vocation as an urban gardener not only transformed his life; Stone believes its growing popularity is evidence others are also undergoing transformation. â€œPeople are going back to growing their own food and in doing so theyâ€™re fixing their own lives,â€? he said. Green City Acres (www.greencityacres.com)
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chef profile — by Deanna Ladret
Nautical Nellie’s Lisa Hartery
Deanna Ladret Chef Lisa Hartery is a cookbookworm, Red Seal Chef, certified ISG Sommelier, WSET diploma candidate, teacher, and perpetual learner. It is this insatiable appetite for knowledge that led her––serendipitously––into her culinary career. Living in St. John’s, Newfoundland, 17-year old high schooler Lisa washed dishes at a little Ma ‘n Pa restaurant downtown. When a server called in sick one day, she jumped at the chance to work the floor, and eventually landed regular serving shifts. After a few months on the job, exasperated with the kitchen’s timing and logistics, Lisa was complaining yet again to her manager. “He said, ‘If you think you can do better, go back there and do it yourself!’ ” Chef Hartery says, laughing. “So, I did!”
Hanging up her waitress apron for chef’s whites felt natural to Hartery, who loves the hands-on aspect of cooking. During university, where she majored in Linguistics and Psychology, she worked at a café called The Blue Door. Weekdays were spent at university, nights and weekends at the restaurant where she hosted international cuisinethemed dinners for which Hartery would do the menu and food prep by day, then serve by night to get firsthand impressions from the customers. It was The Blue Door days when Chef Hartery fused her love of learning with her passion for cooking. “Every time I got my pay cheque, I’d go across the street and buy a new cookbook; that’s how I learned.” Yes, Hartery studied many subjects during her years at university, but cooking was not one of them. Completely self taught through reading and practical experience, she challenged her Red Seal examination in 1999 after years of working in various restaurants and catering privately on the side. Shortly afterward, she accepted a job at Nautical Nellies in Victoria from co-owner Jeff Furneaux, a man she had worked years prior for in St. John’s. Chef Hartery admits a natural affinity towards seafood – no surprise coming from somebody who has always lived near a shore. Apropos, she has created an extensive menu for Nautical Nellies emphasizing fresh fish and shellfish like Venezuelan Seafood Ceviche, Miso Glazed Sablefish, and Creole Sockeye Salmon. Hartery’s wine studies unfolded as the byproduct of a hobby interest, and ended up pairing splendidly with her culinary career. She is the co-creator of Nautical Nellies’ award-winning wine list and conducts guided tastings with co-owner Betty Furneaux to educate restaurant staff. In addition to all of this cooking, researching, and tasting, Hartery has two apprentices in the Nautical Nellies kitchen. She loves to teach and watch her cooks experiment with different techniques and ideas. Reflecting upon her professional career and fascination with flavours and textures, Lisa Hartery ultimately chocks it all up to her love of learning. “I like the reasons. I want to know why.” Nautical Nellies, 1001 Wharf Street, Victoria, BC, 250.380.2260, www.nauticalnelliesrestaurant.com
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EAT MAGAZINE JULY | AUGUST 2012
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Have you ever smuggled food in your suitcase? Ronald St-Pierre - Locals 250.338.6493 Smuggling food? Incriminating question? No, everybody does it, or almost everybody, and sometime without even realising it. Over the years, I may have come back home with a bunch of dried peppers and spices from Central America. Or maybe the time we came home with some fresh foie gras and truffles after a trip to the local market in France. Or maybe when we wanted to bring our family in Florida some fresh local scallops and decided that they would be much better with some fresh cheese too. Can't exactly remember. Will have to pay more attention at what we do when travelling. I must be getting forgetful with my old age… Looking forward to my next trip! Jena Stewart- Devour Bistro 250.590.3231 Yes! I stowed away 2 litres of honey in my backpack. I was so excited to get home and crack it open! As Murphy would have it, the bottle cracked itself open and the entire contents AND the backpack itself had to be tossed! Peter Dubruyn- Strathcona Hotel 250.383.7137 I haven't smuggled food any foods in my suitcase. I do however remember my grandmother in the late 80s smuggled goulash from Germany on a plane for my grandfather who couldn't travel, just for a taste of the old country. Chris Van Hooydonk- Sonora Room Restaurant at Burrowing Owl Estate Winery 250.498.0620 I did very recently smuggle a little something back from my recent travel adventures. My wife Mikkel and I were in Bocas del Toro, Panama and we hiked from a secluded beach up into the hills to an organic coffee and cocoa plantation. I had a wonderful cup of coffee, and tried some pulp from fresh cocoa beans. I came back with some raw cocoa and cocoa nibs. The year prior, while we were on our bucket-list-trip in Africa and Egypt for five weeks, I wandered around the local market in Cairo and brought back some spices for a fantastic price. The quality was amazing and you wouldn’t believe what I paid for saffron… Andrew Langley- Pizzeria Prima Strada (Cook Street) 250.590.8595 Lemons from the Almalfi Coast in Southern Italy. The countryside just smells of lemons everywhere you go. They don't look perfect but they're the best lemons in the world.
MICHAEL TOURIGNY STUDIOS 250-389-1856 2001 Douglas Street - Unit F firstname.lastname@example.org
Zoe O'Doherty- La Piola 250.388.4517 I once convinced my teenage dishwasher to smuggle avocados into Canada for me. That kid was awesome! Edward Tuson- Edge 778.425.3343 Yup! Truffles from Alba… Peter Zambri- Zambri’s 250.360.1171 I have smuggled many food products from far and wide; sometimes with success, at others without. The fresh lion meat from Botswana was a particularly difficult endeavor. The salami and culatello from Italy was nabbed by a rather large McDonald’s-eating, border police mo-fo that told me he was gong to throw it out. The dried cured whale and shark fin from Japan, well that’s another story altogether… Ceara Lorni - Guest participant (EAT) I was in the airport in Naples, waiting to check in for a flight to London. There was a young man in front of me, nearly in tears. He had four suitcases that were overweight and the excess baggage charge was astronomical. He was eyeing up my one piece of carry-on luggage and turned to me to ask if I would consider taking two of his bags for him. I hesitated and he dramatically unzipped all the bags to display four full suitcases of mozzarella di bufala packed in brine. I just couldn't in good conscience take them as I imagined myself going through customs and the officer splitting open the balls of mozzarella to reveal neatly packaged bags of heroine and cocaine.
1715 Government Street 250.475.6260 www.lecole.ca email@example.com
Dinner 5:30 - 11 pm Tuesday to Saturday
www.eatmagazine.ca JULY | AUGUST 2012
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250.583.9343 #108, #10 8, 13615 Victoria Rd. North Summerland, BC www.TheStuffedPepper.ca ww w.TheStuffedPepper.ca dine@TheStuffedPepper.ca dine@TheStuffedPeppe r.ca www.eatmagazine.ca JULY | AUGUST 2012
CHEF PROFILE: Executive Chef Junya Nakamura of Wasabi Izakaya
Claire Sear Executive chef Nakamura opened Wasabi Izakaya, the Okanagan’s first Izakaya restaurant in 2008. Izakaya, literally translated, means “sitting in a sake shop” but today refers to a casual Japanese eating and drinking establishment where small, tapas-style dishes are served. Japanese Izakaya restaurants have become very popular in many North American cities, including New York, Toronto, Vancouver, San Francisco, and Los Angeles. Vancouver is noted as one of the best cities in the world for Izakaya outside of Japan. Junya Nakamura was born in Japan and moved to Maple Ridge, British Columbia, when he was thirteen years old. Tennis was his passion and his parents, who were both tennis coaches, encouraged him. At seventeen, he transferred to the John Newcombe Tennis Academy in Texas where he finished high school. Junya returned to British Columbia and literally fell into cooking by accident when, to save for his university tuition, he took a job as a dishwasher at Guu Izakaya, Vancouver’s first and oldest Izakaya restaurant. Junya, like many athletes, thrived in the adrenaline-rich highpressure environment of the restaurant kitchen and instead of university chose a culinary career. Under the mentorship of Minoru Tamaru, who now owns the awardwinning Kingyo Izakaya in Vancouver, Junya moved quickly up the ranks. At twentyone, Junya became the manager of Guu when Minoru was transferred to run the newly
—By Claire Sear
opened Guu with Garlic Izakaya. As manager, his responsibilities included daily grocery shopping in Chinatown and T & T Supermarket for the demanding creation of sixteen to twenty nightly menu dishes. Inspiration for Guu’s dishes came from reading cookbooks, surfing the internet, eating at other restaurants and his own creativity. During his tenure at Guu, chef Junya was responsible for the creation of over 4,000 nightly dishes. According to Junya, the key to a dish’s success is using simple, fresh ingredients and letting the dish speak for itself. Less is more and there needs to be a balance of sweet, sour, spice and salt. In 2004, Junya gave up the big city and moved to West Kelowna to be closer to his parents. He began raising the necessary capital to open his own restaurant by working at Bento Nouveau, where he managed four Okanagan locations. Junya also greatly enhanced his sushi skills at Bento, which is known as a training ground for sushi chefs. Opportunity knocked when a perfect downtown Kelowna location came up for lease (in the space previously occupied by Opus Art Store). Junya, with the backing of a financial partner, opened Wasabi Izakaya in January 2008. Wasabi Izakaya’s minimal décor, along with the glass garage door opened on the Okanagan’s hot summer days, provides hipster charm. To maintain an authentic Izakaya experience, chef Junya hires cooks and staff from Japan who are eager to spend time in Canada on a working visa. When not in the kitchen, Junya spends time with his wife and two year old son, Yuma. Like many chefs in the Okanagan, Junya takes pride in sourcing locally, buying much of his produce from Quality Greens and, when in season, from a local farmer named Oki, who grows organic Japanese vegetables including eggplant, daikon and edamame. Being in wine country, Chef Junya carries local Okanagan wines along with traditional beers and sake. Wasabi Izakaya offers sushi and noodle dishes to cater to the local lunch crowd. For the authentic Izakaya experience, order from the daily specials or the Wasabi Original menu including traditional Takoyaki or Okanagan favorites such as Ebi-Chili-Mayo, Okonomi Yaki and Miso Black cod. If you have never experienced Japanese tapas, you will delight in the variety of dishes, perfect for sharing at Wasabi Izakaya. Lunch: Monday to Friday 11:30am to 2:00pm. Dinner: Monday to Thursday 5:30pm-9:30pm and Fridays/Saturdays til 10:30pm. 1623 Pandosy Street, Kelowna.
BI BY BY
COMING WINE RE
Kamloops Kelowna Langley Penticton V Vernon ernon Live well. Live organic. organic. www www.naturesfare.com .naturesfare.com
W West est Kelowna
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EAT MAGAZINE JULY | AUGUST 2012
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• Pho Vietnamese Cuisine (Summerland) • (Dairy Free) Fettuccine Alfredo w/ Wild EXCLUSIVE OKANAGAN FEATURES
Salmon and Roasted Asparagus
• Winemaker Jeff Del Nin passes the glass to Adrian Cassini at Cassini Cellars • Valorosa Foods • 3rd Annual Vinos Wine Film Festival ...and more
COMING EVENTS, MORE FOOD, NEW SHOPS AND RESTAURANTS, WINE REVIEWS, BOOKS AND FESTIVAL REVIEWS.
www.eatmagazine.ca JULY | AUGUST 2012