RESTAURANTS | RECIPES | WINES | CULINARY TRAVEL CELEBRATING THE FOOD & DRINK OF ®
That’s Amore DIY Pizza Bar
l 2012 | Issue 16-03 | FREE | EATmagazine.ca
Recipe on page 26
MAY | JUNE
RECIPES Plenty Oâ€™ Fish in Pa
TRENDI The Retur
TRAVEL Tofino Fe Destinati Cover phot
EAT is delive in BC includ Kelowna, Th
Communit Nanaimo: K Okanagan: Web Repor Deanna Lad Contributo Jen Dart, Jas Kusiewicz, An Morris, Eliza Tourigny, Syl
Tel: 250.384 Email: edito
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EAT MAGAZINE MAY | JUNE 2012
EAT magazine may & june 2012
RECIPES Plenty Oâ€™ Pie . . . . . . . . . . .....24 Fish in Parchment . . . . .....32 TRENDING The Return of the Hunt .....28
Tapas Concierge Desk . . . . . . . 06 Epicure At Large . . . . . . .08 Food Matters . . . . . . . . . .09 Meet the Chef . . . . . . . . .10 Good For You . . . . . . . . .12 Get Fresh . . . . . . . . . . . .13
Andrew Moyer owner of Victoriaâ€™s Ottavio Italian Bakery and Delicatessen
Reporter . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14 Eating Well for Less . . . .18 Top Shelf . . . . . . . . . . . . .20 Liquid Assets . . . . . . . . . .36 Wine & Food Pairing . . .38
TRAVEL Tofino Festivals . . . . . . . .....30 Destination Penticton . .....45
News from around BC . .39 Wine + Terroir . . . . . . . .42 Producerâ€™s Series . . . . . . .46 Chefsâ€™ Talk . . . . . . . . . . .47
Cover photography: â€œPlenty Oâ€™ Pieâ€? by Michael Tourigny
EAT is delivered to over 300 pick-up locations in BC including Victoria, Vancouver, Kelowna, The Islands and the Okanagan
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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 Community Reporters Nanaimo: Karma Brophy, Tofino | Uclulet: Jen Dart, Vancouver:: Anya Levykh, Okanagan: Claire Sear, Victoria: Rebecca Baugniet, Comox Valley: Eli Blake Web Reporters Deanna Ladret, Ellie Shortt 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 Morris, Elizabeth Nyland, Julie Pegg, Treve Ring, Claire Sear, Elizabeth Smyth, Michael Tourigny, Sylvia Weinstock, Rebecca Wellman, Caroline West.
Friends, family and great food. Warm fresh air and longer evenings are perfect for entertaining or enjoying a quiet meal on the patio. View our recipe selection at thriftyfoods.com for convenient and delicious recipe ideas like this.
Publisher Pacific Island Gourmet | EAT ÂŽ is a registered trademark. Advertising: 250.384.9042, email@example.com Mailing address: Box 5225, Victoria, BC, V8R 6N4, Tel: 250.384.9042 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: eatmagazine.ca Since 1998 | EAT Magazine is published six times each year. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the written consent of the publisher. Although every effort is taken to ensure accuracy, Pacific Island Gourmet Publishing cannot be held responsible for any errors or omissions that may occur. All opinions expressed in the articles are those of the writers and not necessarily those of the publisher. Pacific Island Gourmet reserves the right to refuse any advertisement. All rights reserved.
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Fernwood Bites o some of you the name “Funky Junky Fernwood” may ring a bell. But approximately seven years ago, what was once perhaps a less reputable part of Victoria has now blossomed into one of the most cultured and friendly areas of the city. The change is thanks in part to Fernwood NRG (Neighbourhood Resource Group Society), a social enterprising non-profit organization run by and for the residents of the neighbourhood who first purchased the Cornerstone building in August 2005, and then transformed the space into affordable housing for families. Since then they have expanded to include more affordable housing undertakings in addition to childcare and family programs, employment opportunity sourcing and other projects with the goal of raising the value of living in the Fernwood area. Of course, one of the best ways of building neighbourly relationships is through the connecting power of food, and one of Fernwood NRG’s biggest and well-attended fundraisers is based upon edible enjoyments. On June 24, this organization will be holding the 3rd annual Fernwood Bites event, showcasing the gastronomic talents of Fernwood businesses as well as other local eateries and chefs from around southern Vancouver Island. Mila Czemerys, who helps organize this event, recognizes the integral part food has played in the growth of the Fernwood community. The event runs for two and a half hours in Fernwood Square and has sold out the last two years. For a $50 ticket, guests are able to sample an unlimited array of food and drink from some of Victoria’s greatest talents, and with a firm cap on 300 attendees, this intimate event gives both vendors and guests the opportunity to get to know each other through more face-to-face interactions than they might have otherwise had in a restaurant setting. “This is a great opportunity for us to showcase all the cool aspects of Fernwood,” says Mike Colwill, owner of the Fernwood Inn. “This is a unique community and I love seeing people fall in love with the different tastes of our square - it’s great to engage with them on a personal level.” Not only is this a great event for businesses to interact with patrons both new and old, but because Fernwood invites vendors from outside of the neighbourhood, it’s also a wonderful opportunity for strenghening ties within the local food scene as a whole. Torin Egan, head chef of The Superior, participated in the event last year and is reminded of a particularly great relationship that came from his neighbouring vendor. “Last year we were situated beside Sea Cider and just through chatting with them at the event, we were able to begin a great working relationship that we continue to uphold today. I look forwards to seeing what other relationships will come out of this year’s event.” Though a great event to build awareness and funds for the Fernwood neighbourhood, Jena Stewart of Devour, a participant in the event since the beginning, adds that this is a great opportunity for overall growth in the Victoria food community. “Victoria isn't all that big, however we see its food scene growing, and that means creating a widespread network of food makers and consumers. I think if we are all to succeed, a 'coming together' of those of us in the industry is essential, no matter where the event is being held. I love the idea of a citywide food culture!” Tickets have been on sale since April 10th and are available at www.fernwood.ca, with all proceeds going to support Fernwood NRG. —By Ellie Shortt
organic bakery & café
Proudly milling Vancouver island grown wheat Using 99% locally grown and certified organic ingredients 1517 Quadra Street Victoria, BC 4
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Monday to Friday 7:30am to 6pm Saturday 8am to 5pm
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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.
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Culinary intelligence for the 2 months ahead
the concierge desk
by Rebecca Baugniet
For more events visit www.eatmagazine.ca
SPRING OKANAGAN WINE FESTIVAL After watching their vines sleep for months, local BC winemakers and vineyards celebrate the arrival of spring and the waking of the vines with a glass – or two – of wine. Spread over the first two weeks of May, the Spring Okanagan Wine Festival busts loose with over 100 events throughout the valley. May 4-13. (www.thewinefestivals.com) DEERHOLME FARM FORAGES AND DINNERS Spring events at Deerholme Farm include a Morel Mushroom and Pasture-Raised Chicken feast on May 5 (Mother’s Day Weekend) and a Wild Food Forage on May 19(Victoria Day Weekend). (www.deerholme.com) EPIC: VANCOUVER SUN SUSTAINABLE LIVING EXPO Western Canada's largest sustainable lifestyle show and eco-marketplace. This annual celebration of planet-friendly living with over 300 green companies, inspiring ideas, exciting entertainment, and smart shopping in one jam-packed weekend. Cooking demonstrations with Vancouver's top Green Table chefs and more. May 11-13. (www.vancouver.epicexpo.com/) FIRST ANNUAL VANCOUVER INTERNATIONAL TEQUILA EXPO This event will take place on Saturday, May 12 at the Vancouver Convention Centre East. It will feature seminars and tastings, and is sponsored by Las Margaritas Mexican Restaurant and the Consulate General of Mexico. Proceeds will benefit the British Columbia Hospitality Foundation (BCHF), the hospitality industry's own charity. (www.vancouvertequilaexpo.com) 4th ANNUAL SPOT PRAWN FESTIVAL This year’s festival is a cooperative effort between the town of Cowichan Bay and the Pacific Prawn Fishers Association. Special Guest at this year’s event will be Robert Clark, Executive Chef of C Restaurant in Vancouver. A family-friendly, fun weekend of chef demos, spot prawn sampling, music and spot prawn sales fresh off the boats. Local eateries will be featuring a spot prawn dish or menu for the week following the event. May 12- 13. (www.cowichanbayseafood.com) FEAST! TOFINO-UCLUELET A collaboration between the area’s renowned chefs, fishermen and women, accommodation providers, activity providers and tour operators, Feast! Tofino - Ucluelet celebrates the abundance of local produce, seafood and sustainable " boat to table " practices commonly adopted by the area's restaurants. This week’s festival is divided into two parts; Salmon Festival Week (May 18-25) and Spot Prawn Festival Week (May 25-June 2). (www.feastbc.com) A TASTE OF FRANCE AT PAPRIKA BISTRO Paprika Bistro will host an evening of fine French food on Tuesday May 29th. Join the Paprika team and Stuart Brown for a four-course wine and food tasting. 7pm. Call 250.592.7424 for reservations. (www.paprika-bistro.com) ANNUAL LUND SHELLFISH FESTIVAL From May 27 - 29, the shores of Lund Harbour are transformed into an outdoor festival boasting food vendors selling a variety of freshly cooked oysters, clams, mussels, prawns, and other delights. Festivities include a Chowder Challenge, live music, craft booths, shellfish sales, art shows, free cooking demonstrations, BC’s Best Oysters Competition, contests, and kids’ play area. Lund’s Shellfish Festival is handicap accessible and all waste is recycled (no garbage is produced). (www.lundbc.ca)
TOFINO FOOD AND WINE FESTIVAL Now in their 9th year, this festival celebrates the marriage of food and wine, with the main event, Grazing in the Gardens, showcasing local culinary talents and British Columbia wines, in the beautiful Tofino Botanical Gardens. Events of the festival support several non-profit organizations and initiatives, including Tofino Botanical Gardens Foundation, Community Children’s Centre and Tofino’s Community Garden, Light-
EAT MAGAZINE MAY | JUNE 2012
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house Trail and Multi Use Path (MUP). June 1-3. (tofinofoodandwinefestival.com) ICC LOCAL FOOD FEST This annual fundraiser supporting the ICC’s micro-loan fund for farmers aims to engage and inspire the public through their palates, with an afternoon spent savouring the finest food and beverages the Island has to offer. June 10 at Fort Rodd Hill. (www.iccbc.ca) V.I.C. FEST The second annual V.I.C. Fest (Vancouver Island Cultural Festival) will be held in Victoria, BC on Saturday, June 16th at St. Ann’s Academy in the heart of Downtown It is a one-day outdoor festival held at the historic St. Ann’s Academy. This year a second stage has been added featuring the Island’s most talented performers. A sprawling orchard will host the Island’s best local breweries along with a newly improved and expanded wine garden featuring wineries from around Vancouver Island. V.I.C. Fest will also showcase local food vendors and delicious Island cuisine. (www.vicfest.ca) BC SHELLFISH FESTIVAL For one weekend in June, Vancouver Island hosts the largest shellfish festival on the West Coast. Featuring live-entertainment, cooking demos by some of the industry’s top chefs, sea worthy competitions and lots of locally grown, sustainably harvested shellfish. The event kicks off with a six course Chefs Dinner on Friday, June 15, featuring a great lineup of local chefs, including Ned Bell, Bill Jones, Ronald St. Pierre and more. June 15 – 16 in Comox. (www.bcshellfishfestival.ca) FERNWOOD BITES This will be the third annual “Local Fare in an Urban Square” food and drink tasting event, raising funds for the Fernwood NRG. Featuring local eateries and chefs, beer and wine, live music and a silent auction. June 24, 5.30pm -8pm in Fernwood Square. $50 per person. Due to access to alcohol, this is a19 years + only event. (www.fernwoodnrg.ca)
ONGOING THROUGHOUT THE SPRING AND SUMMER MONTHS: VICTORIA DOWNTOWN PUBLIC MARKET SOCIETY’S SUMMER MARKETS The VDPMS’ Summer Markets will be held weekly, every Wednesday from 12pm-5pm in Market Square. Familiar artisan vendors will be there offering the best produce and value added food Vancouver Island has to offer, and a growing number of farmers will be selling plant starts and produce as the season progresses. For a full list of vendors, visit their website. (www.victoriapublicmarket.com)
Looking for great views & mouthwatering bbq? We’ve got you covered. BBQ season is just around the corner. Join us on Masters Terrace and take in the sights, sounds and tastes of Bear Mountain. BLOCK PARTY BBQ’S WILL BE BACK THIS SUMMER STAY TUNED ON FACEBOOK.
RICHMOND SUMMER NIGHT MARKET This Asian-style summer event is back starting May 11, 2012. The only one of its kind in North America, the Summer Night Market is as authentic as the original Night Markets throughout Asia. Barbeque beef skewers, Cantonese dumplings, deep-fried cheesecake, Japanese octopus rolls or hurricane potatoes are just some of the foods on offer. (www.summernightmarket.com) STEVESTON FARMERS AND ARTISANS MARKET Located at the corner of Third Avenue and Moncton Street in Steveston. The 2012 Steveston Farmers and Artisans Summer Market will open Sunday, May 20 and operate bi-weekly until September 30. Market Dates: May 20, June 3, 17; July 15, 29; Aug. 5, 19; Sept. 2, 16, 30. (www.sfam.ca) MARKET DINNER EVENINGS AT EDIBLE CANADA Edible Canada on Granville Island has invited chefs from across the country to participate in their market dinner series. National celebrities (including Anna Olson, Lynn Crawford, Connie DeSousa, Andrea Nicholson), and local talent (including Vikram Each chef will prepare a gourmet, seasonal feast in the custom designed private demonstration dining room at Edible Canada at the Market. (www.ediblecanada.com) JOY ROAD CATERING SUNDAY AL FRESCO VINEYARD DINNERS This summer's Sunday Al Fresco Vineyard Dinners will be hosted on the grounds of the God's Mountain Estate B&B just South of Penticton. This unparalleled Okanagan dining experience welcomes local winemakers, beginning June 28th with Joie Farm and running until September 6th. (www.joyroadcatering.com) .
-- | . www.eatmagazine.ca MAY | JUNE 2012
epicure at large — by Jeremy Ferguson ROASTING - EDUCATION - EQUIPMENT - DISTRIBUTION A FAMILY TRADITION OF BEVERAGE EXCELLENCE SINCE 1973...
You Want Fries With That? For the author, the U.S. first lady and a goodly portion of the world’s population, the answer is a resounding “yes!”
A CARBON NEUTRAL COMPANY
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Michelle Obama confesses to the addiction. Movie actress Cameron Diaz ranks the French fry alongside caviar. In the film Sling Blade, Billy Bob Thornton endeared his character to audiences with “I like them French fried potaters.” In A Fish Called Wanda, Kevin Kline lauded the chip as “the English contribution to world cuisine.” The single most cherished dish in western culture? I nominate the frite, its alternate guises the chip, the fry, even the cretinous freedom fry. That incomparable confluence of potato, hot oil and salt floats through childhood memories, haunts our palates until we ourselves are ready to haunt, and sustains the food chain from mcfood to the finest bistros in France. (The French have even made a short comic film about the frites obsession. It’s titled Frites, naturally, and can be viewed online at http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xiicno_frites_fun.) We know about the potato: historically, it was poor man’s caviar, poor man’s truffles, poor man’s everything. But the French fry was a relative latecomer. Antoine Parmentier, Napoleon Bonaparte’s minister of health, whose great achievement was convincing the French that potatoes didn’t cause leprosy, didn’t invent the frite, after all. Current thinking places its birth almost a century later, in the aftermath of the French Revolution. The birth of the British chip is similarly mysterious, but chips were sold in the town of Oldham (which also lays claim to England’s first fish and chip shop) in 1860. The “French fry” first appeared in a U.S. cookbook prior to the American Civil War. Theories can go a little mad. The curator of the Frietmuseum in Brugge, the world’s only museum dedicated to the fried potato, insists the French fry was the creation of the 16th century saint Teresa of Ávila, whose pickled finger, sitting in a jar in the Ávila Cathedral, sent me into fits of youthful mirth on my first visit to Spain in 1967. But it’s true that no one cherishes the fried potato more than the Belgians, who regard it as a critical component of national character. Belgians swarm streetside friteries to get their fix, usually accompanied with a large dollop of mayo or garlicky aioli. Lately, the passion has gone international with Belgian friteries turning up from Turkey to Thailand. Connoisseurs rush to New York City’s East Village to eat at Pommes Frites, which proffers Belgian fries with 30 different accompaniments, the more fanciful among them Vietnamese pineapple and smoked eggplant mayos. I love the frite so much I once misread a Parisian Bonnes Fêtes sign as “Pommes Frites.” I’ve never eaten a great frite in Paris, and maybe that has something to do with the McCain’s boxes overflowing the trash bins of fashionable Parisian restaurants. McCain’s is the world leader in the manufacture of frozen fries. Every so often I try one hoping to find a hint of potato flavour or a consistency better than congealed sawdust, and come away snarling. The best French fry I’ve ever eaten was in a small town in Bariloche, the Argentine Banff, in an unpretentious restaurant, a Peruvian yellow potato fried, probably, in lard (a few orders fried in lard in the course of the year won’t ruin the health). The pursuit of the perfect fry can seem like an impossible dream. The frozen potato rules, and even when they’re not, there’s the question of what potato, traditional practice being the cheapest money can buy. Making a great French fry is not a simple prospect. My Victoria fave by far is Pig BBQ Joint, which for a modest $3.50, serves up a portion of fries—fat, crispy-skinned fries roaring with honest potato flavour— generous enough to choke a lumberjack. Pig sells 75,000 pounds of fries a year. What does proprietor Jeff Hetherington do so right? He uses Kennebec potatoes, switching to B.C. whites later in the season when the former sweetens—the more sugar, the less crisp the potato. He maintains a large fryer exclusively for blanching. He doesn’t overload. He gives his potatoes a few hours in the cooler before the second fry. He seasons with kosher salt and fresh cracked black pepper. “In most places, they rush it,” he says, “but with fries, it’s about getting it right every step of the way. One step poorly done and they’re gone—tasteless, mushy, soggy. At Pig, my guys come in early just for prep. You won’t see them prepping while they’re serving. Above all, it’s a labour of love. I love fries, just love ’em.”
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food matters — by Julie Pegg
Julie Pegg travels to Umbria and encounters a plentiful, nutritious and delicious winter green wherever she goes.
Our coach speeds past country fields and lumbers by vacant city lots, back gardens and front yards—spaces one would expect to be lying in dismal February grey. Instead they are carpeted in bright green, specked with sunny bits of yellow. A closer look reveals a mass of leafy plants, tipped with small broccoli-like florets. Some are just breaking flower, hence the yellow. I pluck a leaf. It is tart, peppery and lightly saccharine. (A touch of frost sweetens slightly winter vegetables.) I am touring Italy’s Umbria and Campania on a wine tourism conference trip. Neither I, nor my fellow conference compatriots, can figure out what the green is. The Italians, even those who speak English, tell us it is “friarelli,” which they offer with a shrug that implies “of course.” A friend and ex-pat who lives in Naples enlightens me while handing over a mere euro to a market vendor for three enormous bouquets of the stuff. We know friarelli as broccoli raab or rapini, she tells me. “It grows here most of the year. The locals love it and live on it.” Rapine is not broccoli but related to the turnip. It is also not to be confused with broccolini, which, according to my Food Lover’s Companion, is a “trademarked name” for a broccoli/Chinese kale hybrid. During our trip, the green appears in delicious dish after delicious dish—chucked into vegetable and white bean soup, or tossed with toasted wheat orecchiette with chickpeas (marvellous) and other pasta dishes. In Naples, it is scattered, instead of summer’s basil, atop margherita pizza, layered with crushed tomatoes slicked with olive oil and slices of buffala mozzarella. Sautéed simply with olive oil, generous garlic, chili flakes and/or anchovies, the green is served room temperature on bruschetta, with rosemary-rubbed porchetta or plump sausages. Bitter plays off sweet when friarielli, slow-cooked in broth, partners with guanciale (pig’s jowl) braised in red wine until the meat is shredding tender, the wine reduced to near-syrup. This Italian touchstone has not garnered the popularity in North America that chard and kale have. Save for the southern U.S. penchant for collard greens, North Americans view it, along with escarole, beet, turnip or dandelion greens, as unpleasantly bitter.
We are missing out. Back in Vancouver, I go looking for friarelli. I come home with a sturdy bunch of dark green leaved rapini from Commercial Drive’s Santa Barbara Market. I also happen on organic rapini in Whole Foods. Thinner stalked, bright green and flecked with tiny yellow blooms, it’s a dead ringer for the Italian plant. With on-line help, I begin to experiment. A sprinkle of coarse sea salt tempers the bitterness; so does blanching the greens before sautéing. I find that a slow braise really tames the vegetable but wonder whether it destroys the same powerhouse nutrients that it shares with kale. My favourite new recipe, using this versatile and nutrient-rich green (vitamin C, folic acid, beta-carotene and lutein among others), follows. Pasta and Chickpeas with Rapini Trim and chop one large bunch of rapine and steam one minute over a pot of boiling water. Lift steamer from pot and press the rapini to remove liquid. Set aside. Add more water to pot. Add salt. Bring to boil. Add a cup or so of whole-wheat pasta. Cook until al dente (about 10 minutes.) Drain. Set aside. While pasta is cooking, pour a glug of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add a tin of chickpeas, drained (or 1 cup dried chickpeas soaked overnight, cooked and drained). Add a pinch of salt. Saute until chickpeas start to turn golden, about 5 minutes. Add 3 cloves finely minced garlic, a few chili flakes and a couple of chopped anchovies (optional). Saute about two minutes. (Do not let garlic burn.) Turn up heat and deglaze with ½ cup of either red or white wine. Add ¾ cup chicken or vegetable broth. Simmer until liquid is nearly reduced. Transfer rapini to chickpea mixture. Add drained noodles and toss the whole lot together. Divide among four plates for a first course. Drizzle with more oil if desired. Cannelini beans may replace chickpeas, and turnip or beet greens can sub in for rapini. Italian sausage or pancetta is a nice addition. Falanghina, Fiano (white wines) or Aglianico (red wine) from Campania are spot on for rapini recipes.
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Inn at Laurel Point | 680 Montreal St. 250.414.6739 | aurarestaurant.ca /@AURAVictoria |
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chef profile — by Joseph Blake
The Marina’s Matt Rissling The Victoria native loves the challenge of this 160-seat landmark room.
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With his trimmed beard and erect posture, the Marina Restaurant’s executive chef Matt Rissling projects a young sea captain’s calm confidence. Since taking over as executive chef at the 160-seat Oak Bay landmark in 2009, Rissling has built a kitchen staff capable of producing consistent, quality meals at the beautiful, sprawling, seaside room. “It’s a wonderfully talented and committed kitchen crew,” Rissling enthused as we visit in his restaurant’s sushi bar. “From youngsters to our double-Red Seal pastry chef, it’s a great team. Most of the staff of 22 are long-term employees, five- to 10-year veterans at the Marina who don’t even need to talk while turning out 80 plates an hour.” As we visited, Rissling was mentally preparing for 1,000 guests at a daunting, twoday Easter brunch and dinner offering. A self-described “Gordon Head kid,” Rissling was inspired by his mother and aunts’ “unfussy cooking styles” and seminal television chefs like Julia Child, Graham Kerr and James Barber. He started working in local commercial kitchens as a teenager and became a line cook at Chandler’s and Milestones, where he was “drilled in systems, standards, efficiency, organization and consistency. It was great training,” Rissling explained, “but my next job at the Marriott Inner Harbour was the real eye-opener.” At the Marriott’s Fire and Water, executive chef David Roger and chefs Andrew Dickinson and Jeff Keenliside taught Rissling what it takes to produce much higher end, more intricate cooking. He followed Keenliside to the Marina a year later and served as his sous-chef. “Jeff taught me to build relationships with the people you buy from. I’ve learned to buy great stuff and don’t touch it too much. It’s important to show respect for the products and the people who produce it.” “Today, I’m excited about the prospect of working with some black cod that came in from Finest At Sea, some nice 8-10 pounders, and I’ll use the frames [the heads, tails and bones for stock]. Satellite, some day-boat guys out of Sidney, deliver live sole and flounder, and I get oysters direct from up-Island oyster farmer Holly Wood. I’ve got a crab guy and a mushroom guy and a guy who trucks in large quantities of fruit and vegetables from the Okanagan. Local sources are the best and coincidentally the most sustainable products.” A former member of the Vic West Food Security Collective who helped establish the edible organic garden at Banfield Park, Rissling now gardens his Saanich townhouse’s grounds in his spare time. “My garlic is six inches tall already! It’s a sixth generation crop from an original garlic bulb. We’ve got a nine-year-old and a ten-year-old, so we grow strawberries, tomatoes, peas, carrots and radishes. All my kale and chard is already gone. The kids eat it like candy.”
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www.eatmagazine.ca MAY | JUNE 2012
good for you — by Pam Durkin
Going with the Grain
These four nutritious foods have all the health benefits of whole grains without the gluten. Nutritional research provides irrefutable evidence regarding the health benefits of whole grains. But if you’re avoiding gluten—the protein found in wheat, rye, barley, spelt, kamut and triticale—you may be finding it difficult to incorporate “whole-grain goodness” into your diet. Enjoying the following nutrient-dense, gluten-free grains on a regular basis can easily surmount that difficulty. They’ll deliver great taste and unsurpassed nutrition whether you’re eating gluten-free—or not. Millet—You may know millet as the tiny yellow grain found in birdseed. But it’s certainly not “just for the birds.” Rich in B vitamins, calcium, magnesium, potassium and zinc, millet also has the highest iron content of any cereal grain. In addition, it’s a good source of disease-fighting carotenoids. Millet’s sweet, mild flavour is suitable in both sweet and savoury dishes. Try millet as “porridge” with dried fruit and nuts or in pilafs, stews, casseroles or puddings. A great site to visit for millet recipes is www.latartinegourmand.com. Beatrice Peltre’s Globe Zucchini Stuffed with Millet and Vegetables is positively scrumptious. Another exemplary example of millet’s gourmet worthy status—the millet fritters at Vancouver’s Bluewater Café.
EAT magazine • May + June 2012 edition
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EAT MAGAZINE MAY | JUNE 2012
Quinoa—Technically it’s not a grain at all; it’s a member of the goosefoot family like its botanical cousin spinach. Pronounced keen wah, this pseudo-grain is renowned for its impressive nutritional profile and intriguing taste and texture. High in B vitamins, vitamin E, iron, calcium, magnesium, phosphorous and potassium, it is also a good source of protein, unlike most grains. When cooked, quinoa has a texture that is oddly creamy and crunchy at the same time—similar perhaps to “al dente” pasta. Quinoa’s delicate nutty flavour makes it an appealing replacement for rice in most dishes, be they entrées or desserts. And I have made marvellous fruit crumbles, cookies and cereals with quinoa “flakes” a relatively new supermarket item. But my favourite quinoa creation is Bubby’s Kitchen’s undeniably delicious Chocolate Quinoa Sandwiches—a decadent dark-chocolate whoopie cake miraculously made with whole grain quinoa. Amaranth—A relative of the common pigweed, amaranth was a staple in the diets of the Mayans and Incas for thousands of years. The plant is not a grain at all, it’s an annual herb, but it produces seeds that fall under the “pseudo-grain” category in the culinary world. Though tiny in size, the seeds pack a nutritional punch unrivalled among cereal grains. Amaranth is teeming with protein, fibre, B vitamins, iron, calcium, magnesium and potassium. And unlike other grains, it’s also a rich source of essential fatty acids, including oleic acid, the heart-healthy EFA normally associated with olive oil. Thankfully, amaranth’s profile also includes a delicious malty flavour that lends itself to multiple uses in the kitchen. The seeds are normally simmered in liquid like other grains, but they can also be “popped” like popcorn. In Mexico, the popped seeds are mixed with molasses to make a crunchy snack called alegrias. I make a similar energizing nibble by mixing popped amaranth with honey, dried fruit, nuts and pumpkin seeds. Buckwheat—Despite its misleading name, buckwheat contains no wheat and is actually a fruit seed related to rhubarb. Commonly ground into flour for use in pancakes and crêpes, whole buckwheat is sold either unroasted or roasted—the latter most often referred to as “kasha.” Unroasted buckwheat has a soft, subtle flavour while roasted buckwheat has more of a robust, nutty taste often used in hearty, Eastern European dishes. Like the other “pseudo-grains” listed, buckwheat is a rich source of vitamins, minerals and fibre and is particularly abundant in cancer-thwarting flavanoids like quercetin and rutin. Simmered in apple juice, with raisins and ginger, buckwheat makes a nutritious porridge, but it can also bring a unique taste to cabbage rolls, soups, stews or salads. For the ultimate buckwheat experience, I recommend starting your day with Café Bliss’s Apple Cinnamon Sprouted Buckwheat Granola.
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Cauliflower Creations I have often contemplated hosting a potluck dinner with a monochromatic colour theme. For a purple motif, guests could riff on dishes containing purple cauliflower, potatoes, carrots, cabbage, peppers, asparagus, grapes, plums and blueberries. An allwhite wedding supper—featuring white cauliflower, halibut, white truffles, enoki and white asparagus, with mangosteen pavlova for dessert—would be très chic. At the ceremony, the groom would sport a miniature cauliflower boutonniere and the bride would walk down the aisle carrying an elegant bouquet nestled in its own ornate veined greenery: a head of raw cream-coloured cauliflower, trailing the faint scent of smelly socks. If you love cauliflower as much as I do, join me as I take the concept a step further and fantasize an all-cauliflower dinner. It would start with cauliflower pear hazelnut salad and ensalada de coliflor (cooked cauliflower drizzled with avocado, lemon juice and ground almond sauce). The soup would have to be dreamy creamy cauliflower soup, made with crumbled Stilton cheese, heavy cream, leeks, celery, potatoes, onions, garlic and dry sherry, with generous dollops of sour cream in each bowl. For the main course: lamb and cauliflower tajine made with chilies, garlic and saffron. Side dishes would include aloo gobi (spicy potatoes and cauliflower); cauliflower soufflé; roasted cauliflower dry-rubbed with crushed fennel seeds, dried chilies, peppercorns and coriander; high-rise savoury cauliflower cake (with herbs, spices and Parmesan cheese, baked in a springform pan) and chou-fleur du Barry, a creamy cauliflower/potato dish with oodles of ladles of beurre meunière, from a recipe created for the 18th-century French gourmand, Madame du Barry, chief mistress to King Louis XV. For dessert: triple-layer cauliflower, ricotta and raspberry mini-cheesecakes with an almond crust, or another sweet created by competitors in the cauliflower challenge. Here is a fascinating factoid about cauliflower and its superfood cabbage family kin: they were all derived from colewort, an ancient, loose-leafed wild cabbage that still grows wild in coastal Europe. Colewort buds became Brussels sprouts, its flowers became broccoli and cauliflower, its leaves became kale and collard greens, its stem was transformed into kohlrabi and its root turned into the turnip. Cauliflower’s pretty little head is composed of immature, unopened flower buds called “curds.” When the florets begin growing, farmers wrap each head of white cauliflower in its own leaves and secure the foliage with rubber bands or twine to shade it from the sun. This “blanching” technique preserves the whiteness of the curds. The head swells and sweetens in the cocoon of its leaves until it is harvested. Self-blanching cauliflower varieties have leaves that fold over the heads without assistance. Orange and purple cauliflowers do not require this parasol approach. A list of local farms that sell cauliflower can be accessed at islandfarmfresh.com/ products/Cauliflower. To grow your own, start seedlings indoors until mid-June and transplant them to the vegetable patch in six weeks. Cauliflower can be harvested two months after transplanting. Be sure to try the colourful cauliflowers that are available. Purple varieties turn green when cooked, and orange ones, like “Cheddar Cheese,” retain their colour. Italian cauli-fiori varieties include purple, brown and yellow cultivars and Romanesca cauliflowers with complex, coral-like lime-green heads. Broccoflower, a broccoli/ cauliflower cross, has a chartreuse head and tastes like both its ancestors. Imagine a cauliflower crudité platter with multicoloured florets and multicoloured dips. Now that’s using your pretty little head!
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.
Thai Cauliflower and Asparagus Stir-fry Tamara Bailey, chef/owner of Café Ceylon, an Ayurvedic restaurant in Victoria, created this delicious vegetarian dish, which can be served with rice or noodles. 2 Tbsp peanut oil or ghee ½ red onion, thinly sliced 1 clove garlic, minced 1 medium-sized cauliflower, broken into bite-size pieces 1 lb. asparagus cut into 1-inch pieces ½ red bell pepper, julienne 1 fresh red chili pepper, thinly sliced Sea salt to taste
½ tsp turmeric ¼ tsp black pepper Heat oil (or ghee) in a wok over mediumhigh heat. Add onion and garlic and sauté until tender. Add cauliflower, mix well and cook until just tender. Add asparagus and stir-fry until tender. Add red bell pepper, sliced chili, salt, turmeric and pepper. Combine and cook 10 minutes.
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
MAY | JUNE 2012
Tofino’s Storm Surge
Four new—and stellar— enterprises add to Tofino’s growing reputation as a food destination
Tofino-bound travelers have quadruple cause for celebration this summer. And “Made in Tofino” has never had more clout. The past year has seen the openings of four new businesses from local entrepreneurs, all with the common mission of pleasuring the palate. So you might find yourself sipping a superlative cappuccino for two bucks a cup and going back for seconds, or quaffing a growler of suds with the peculiar label of Hoppin’ Cretin, or picnicking on a fastidious pizza of unprecedented quality, or tucking into short rib infused with the sensations of Vietnamese pho. All four raise the bar for the Tofino experience. Three of the four operate on the unromantically named Industrial Way. Red Can Gourmet is chef Tim May’s burgeoning takeaway and catering company. May, who spent 13 years at the exclusive Clayoquot Wilderness Resort (and catered that celebrity wedding), plunged into a giant hole in the market and now spends his day not only turning out sandwiches, salads and pizzas to starving locals, but catering weddings, delivering breakfasts to resorts without restaurants and provisioning outfitters with lunches for fishers and whale-watchers. For fishers without facilities, he offers a catchand-cook program, transforming the catch to anything from sashimi to barbecue. May posts his daily menus online. His pizzas—he imports the flour from Italy—are Friday night balm for many a local. His lineup may include the likes of cumin-scented seafood chowder with fresh thyme and braised barbecue beef brisket sandwich, all dancing to the mantra of fresh, simple and rocking with flavour. www.redcangourmet.com. Bearish Tofino photographer Michael Farrow of the Tofino Coffee Co. is always happy to discuss his love for the “ceremony of coffee.” Flanked by his heavy-duty Diedrich roaster, fine-tuned grinders and fire-engine-red Sibilla espresso machine, he is Tofino’s coffee culture. Farrow’s coffee is organic, powerful, rich on the palate, a meld of Guatemalan, Brazilian and Indonesian beans. Tofino establishments, including SoBo, Shelter and the Tin Wis Resort, have been swift to adopt it. It’s available from the big guy himself from
EAT MAGAZINE MAY | JUNE 2012
8 a.m. to noon every day at his location behind Red Can Gourmet. Farrow dispenses cappuccino at two bucks a cup, a bargain; half-pound bags of beans sell for $8. Up the way, the upstart Tofino Brewing Co. is the work of Bryan O’Malley, Chris Neufeld and Dave McConnell, three dedicated suds lovers who decided, “Why not?” Not quite ready for a bottling line, the microbrewery that could dispenses four labels in reusable, refillable 64-oz growlers, including its toasty blond Tuff Session Ale and lusty Hoppin’ Cretin (inspired by a Ramones song) IPA. Even more intriguing is its Dawn Patrol Espresso Coffee Porter, a dark, seductive brew with distinct coffee (from the Tofino Coffee Co.) underpinnings. It’s environmentally correct: total hydroelectric power translates as no carbon emissions. Water used in the heating exchange process is recovered and reused. Used grain is recycled as livestock feed for a Port Alberni farm. And the leftover slurry of hops is given to local farmers as fertilizer. With their beers already flying across counters from SoBo and Weigh West to the Wickanninish Inn and sweeping the peninsula to Ucluelet’s Cyn at Night and Blackrock Resort, the wee brewery looks unstoppable. The boys are confident: souvenir kegs, T-shirts and hoodies are already for sale. Coordinates: www.tofinobrewingco.com. Chef Vincent Fraissange arrived in Tofino by way of Toronto and Bora Bora, transforming the former Raincoast Cafe into the Spotted Bear Bistro, a 30-seat, highceilinged boite embracing the local and organic with dedication, affordability and originality. A recent $60 tasting menu included fluffy mushroom-and-risotto croquettes boosted with house-made truffle aioli; pan-fried salmon atop warm potato salad with smoked tuna, a stellar ensemble; a duo of short rib exotically braised in Vietnamese pho spices star anise and ginger and Southeast-Asian inspired pork-and-shrimp patty; and to finish, an especially rich and velvety chocolate pot de crème sprinkled with Malden salt. Oohla-la. Coordinates: www.spottedbearbistro.com. —By Jeremy Ferguson
Pictured far left: Michael Farrow at the Tofino Coffee Co. roaster. Above: Bryan O'Malley, co-owner of the Tofino Brewing Co, with growlers. Right: Chef Tim May with pizza paddle at Red Can Gourmet
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First Look From left to right: Kelly Hueston, John Brooks and Ken Hueston. John's Sausage (Charbroiled Sausage) with Beer-jon mustard and coleslaw.
Smoken Bones Cookshack | 7-1701 Douglas Street Victoria, BC (250) 391-6328 | smokenbones.ca This column could be more aptly titled Second Look since Smoken Bones has relaunched itself in a 200-capacity downtown restaurant following its first incarnation as a small-but-vastly-popular Langford eatery. Now situated in the gentrified Hudson building on Douglas Street, the new Smoken Bones Cookshack held its grand opening in February and is now open for finger-licking southern-style lunch and dinner daily. The new space is surprisingly large, with concrete floors, high ceilings and wall-towall windows just above street level. Constructed almost entirely by owner Ken Hueston, chef John Brooks and several of their friends, the new Smoken Bones is truly a labour of love, right down to the hand-upholstered tabletops. As for atmosphere, imagine a non-corporate, non-kitschy, locally owned version of the cookhouse-style chain (often seen near movie theatres) they hate being likened to. Oh, and kick the menu up about 10 notches in the excitement department and add a soul food twist. As much as Brooks may loathe the comparison, for those of us secretly fond of the unnamed cookhouse-style chain restaurant, we now have no need to ever go back. The food lineup has changed somewhat from Smoken Bones’ previous location to reflect the new situation. Previews from Chef Brook’s current menu include charbroiled pork sausage, fried fish with Bayou swamp sauce, fried pickles, hushpuppies, clam and bacon sandwich, and––of course––ribs with sides of mac ’n’ cheese, candied carrots, Kennebec fries or butter-fried cabbage. Top off the meal with a flourless mud cake, banana pudding with bourbon whip, or bacon ice cream. If those samples seem heavy on the calories, it’s probably true––nothing that a few hundred laps around the heritage building won’t fix. However, there are also several fresh, lighter salads and three soups to balance out the menu’s richer features or satisfy the resident dieter in your group. As one would expect from an ex-Camille’s chef, everything is made in-house, right down to the bacon and sausages––everything that is except the ketchup, of which Brooks says breathlessly, “I’ll get around to it … when I have time!”— —By Deanna Ladret Note: Smoken Bones holds special food days like Sausage Saturdays, Thank Cod It’s Friday and Sloppy Joe Wednesdays. Phone for details.
EAT MAGAZINE MAY | JUNE 2012
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Eating Well for Less — by Elizabeth Smyth
The Black Hat - left: The "Hot Dog" with kimchi and truffled fries. right: Brian Bekkema (foreground), John Paul Turrinos (background)
The Black Hat by Bistro 28, 1005 Langley St at Broughton, www.theblackcat.ca, 250.381.2428 The sleek and sophisticated venue of The Black Hat is now open for decadent and delicious lunches, some of which slide nicely into the parameters of a $13 and under lunch budget. Many of these lunches share a witticism: a creative and sometimes luxurious food hides behind the wink of a prosaic name. Take the B.L.T for example. The “B” doesn’t stand for bacon; it stands for “braised pork belly.” This rich cut of meat is essentially candied in terms of texture; it is braised then deep-fried, creating a seared bacon-like exterior around the rich, soft, creamy meat interior. It is then tossed in star anise, black pepper, and salt. This concoction is then paired with smoked tomato jam and the light zing of arugula for the sexiest BLT I’ve ever had. The funniest name on the menu, especially given the subtle elegance of the surroundings, is the starkly worded “Hot Dog.” Needless to say, it is a far cry from the fare at summer camp. This one is made from a house-made puree of chicken and pork. It is twice as long as the conventional ones, and is served in a pretzel bun that is a knockout – soft bread with a golden brown exterior brushed with salt. This “hotdog” comes beautifully plated, angled on an pristine oblong dish, flanked by a pickled salad of celeriac, Chinese cabbage, red onion, and celery, and on the other side, uniformly crisp thin fries infused with the flavour of truffles. Both the above dishes cost $13. “New Mexican Chili” for $11 for a large bowl also contained a surprise – it is thickened with pumpkin seeds. This chili is lovingly prepared with meat so tender it has softened and shredded. The pinto beans in it have retained a toothsome bite. The bread that comes with it is grilled, which some people like, but I find it imparts a slightly burned taste. Overall, going to the Black Hat for lunch is a chance to enjoy sexy food in a hot new restaurant.ting us practice our French.
La Taquisa, 120-176 Wilson St near Save-On Foods, www.lataquisa.com, 250.590.6588 La Taquisa is best known as a Mexican cart in Cook St. Village; I, however, went to their newer Westside Village location across the Bay Street. While most people take their food out, it is perfectly comfortable for a quick sit-down meal, with an attractive wood bar along a large plate glass window. Granted, the view is of a parking lot, but that’s outside their control! The food was definitely all affordable. The reality I’ve experienced when travelling in Mexico is that some food is tasty and some food is
EAT MAGAZINE MAY | JUNE 2012
simple to the point of bland. I experienced this at La Taquisa too. Following are the tasty dishes I enjoyed there. The tortilla soup is a thick, rich mix of tomatoes, onion, garlic, and chicken stock seasoned with oregano. The trick is to reach down with your spoon and scoop up the layer of tortilla on the bottom to get it mixed in. This is a favourite with the children of their clientele as well, and is priced at $6 for 16 ounces and $4 for 12 ounces. Talking about children, I am extremely grateful for their quesadilla priced at $2. It’s just a corn tortilla and mozzarella, nothing more, but that hits the mark for some toddlers. Also worth targeting is the chicken mole, whether it’s in a taco or burrito. Mole recipes vary wildly from region to region; this one includes chocolate, bread, chicken stock, cinnamon and cloves, creating a rich, exotic flavour. The corn tortillas are rolled out and grilled fresh to order, and are soft and sweet. The tacos have a generous amount of filling, and are $2.50 each, or five for $10, and the large burrito is $8. To my enormous surprise, I liked the quesadilla called “The Gringa.” The name turned me off, clearly because of my innate snobbery, but it had the appeal of a well-executed grilled cheese sandwich with a twist. Here cheese, salsa, and a filling of choice – mine was chicken – are packed between two tortillas and fried, and it was very tasty. At $4, one works well for a snack, and two for a meal.
La Taquisa - left: Trio of tacos (from left to right): Chicken Mole, Veggie rajas with corn and Beef with salsa verde. right: Scott Demner (pictured rolling tortillas)
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Jade Fountain, 3366 Douglas St north of Ardesier St, www.jadefountain.ca, 250.383.8718 Dim sum at Jade Fountain Restaurant, underneath the Red Lion Inn, is a bustling, lively affair, with lots of families enjoying this communal eating experience. For the uninitiated, dim sum is basically a Cantonese brunch with small plates, like hors d’oeuvres, being served, in this case in carts, and at other places off a menu. Be prepared for lots of protein. The jewel in the crown for me was the shrimp and scallop ball. It looked like a little tiny canoe, with a translucent rice flour wrapper enrobing a pink shrimp ball topped with a slice of scallop, all garnished with a smattering of shrimp roe. Also in the category of delicate was an intriguing golden tofu braised in fish broth and served over Chinese cabbage. The tofu cubes were infused with the fish flavour, and were something I haven’t seen before in my dim sum travels in various Canadian cities. The shrimp and chive dumplings are easily identified by the glistening green shining through the translucent rice casing – the generous hand with the chives makes these very refreshing. Dim sum can be more known for its richer offerings. The Shanghai ginger pork dumplings are identifiable by their flat base twisting up into a swirl. These have a palate-cleansing blast of ginger – I love assertive seasoning. Taro cakes are always a personal favourite, even if they do look a bit like muddy little footballs. These have a seemingly impossible structure of a mashed taro exterior,
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Jade Fountain - Chive and Shrimp dumpling, Scallop dumpling, Shrimp dumpling, Ginger pork dumpling stuffed with diced pork, shrimp, and mushrooms, all deep-fried to a light crispy brown. One dish I missed because it came around as I was packing up to leave was a generous plate of steamed gai lan – the next time I would pester the servers for this Chinese broccoli early on, because I like the balance of a vegetable dish with dim sum. I did notice that I wasn’t offered a dish that Caucasians might be perceived to find scary, in this case the tripe. All right, all right, dammit, I don’t in fact like tripe, so I’m clearly not the world’s coolest food writer, but I still want to be offered it. And I missed having squid that wasn’t deep-fried. My childhood memories of weekly dim sum trips with my parents included tender baby squid in black bean or ginger sauce, my brother and I dangling the tentacles from our lips in front of our squeamish grandmother, squealing “help me, help me” in squid accent, my parents shocking the servers by knowing how to say “squid” in Cantonese – a necessary survival skill in 1980s Ottawa where we would be the only non-Chinese family in the restaurant, and we’d be swatting off the lame abbreviated English-only menus being thrust at us. So…stir-fried squid. I am haunted by the thought that there might have been some, and I just wasn’t assertive enough about demanding that every lid of every bamboo steamer get opened. Reason to go back…It’s a little hard to say the cost per person as it’s a shared meal and depends on gluttony levels, but you can most certainly feel full for $12 to $15.
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REFINED. TIMELESS. SOPHISTICATED. 250.770.1104 WWW.GODDARDARCHITECTURE.COM www.eatmagazine.ca MAY | JUNE 2012
top shelf — by Sylvia Weinstock 1 0 0 % O R G A N I C | FA I RT R A D E | L O C A L LY OW N E D & O P E R AT E D
Feys+Hobbs Canteen David Feys’s catered luxury comes to Oak Bay Avenue.
Silk Road Teas are created and blended in Victoria. Tea can be rich and pungent or delicate and subtle. The Silk Road art of tea blending ensures that the character of the plant retains its essential harmony and is enhanced by the ingredients with which it is paired. Select botanicals from around the world, as well as the West Coast, are carefully cured and prepared Rebecca Wellman
to yield a superb tea experience.
www.silkroadtea.com 1624 Government St. Victoria Chinatown It’s always exciting when a new foodie hangout opens in my Oak Bay ’hood, especially one as inviting as Feys+Hobbs Canteen. David Feys’s company, Feys+Hobbs Catered Arts, has built a top-notch reputation for catering in Victoria for 16 years. Since Feys opened Canteen in late February, food lovers have flocked into the spacious shop to enjoy sweet and savoury goodies from the fresh case, F+H frozen entrées (try the seafood cannelloni) and unique F+H bottled and jarred delicacies (you have to taste their bacon jam!). Seats at the large round communal table and the counter facing the Avenue are filled with people spooning up scrumptious soups (e.g., carrot coconut, heirloom tomato or sunchoke and cauliflower), tucking into the colourful five veggie “Power Salad” with F+H’s killer Apple Dried Cranberry Toasted Rosemary Dressing, and getting their fix of addictive Caramel Crack Squares. Canteen also sells an array of interesting products from other fine food creators, including Noble Handcrafted Maple Vinegar, Secret Aardvark Habanero Hot Sauce and Vancouver’s Butter Bakery treats. The contents of the fresh case, which Feys posts daily on Facebook, include ever-changing temptations such as Moroccan Braised Veal Cheeks, butter chicken, Horseradish and Lime Crusted Albacore Tuna Roasts (yum), crab cakes (gluten-free), asparagus quiche and osso buco. I was delighted when Feys revealed that Gryfe’s bagels (shipped par-baked and frozen from Toronto where they have been a fave since 1957) will be baked at Canteen every weekend. As transplanted Torontonians know, Gryfe’s are so fab fresh from the oven they don’t need embellishments. Real bagels. In Oak Bay. Oh my. “The reaction has been phenomenal. We really feel welcomed into the neighbourhood,” says the enthusiastic Feys. “Customers can find our best products, the hottest new food products and beloved old standbys. It’s a place to enjoy good food prepared with integrity. We’ll also have food demos and tastings to round out the experience.” “There are only so many occasions each year where customers give a large catered party. This venue allows everyone to enjoy our food on a regular basis,” Feys explains. “Canteen is all about gourmet, high-quality, healthful eating every day.” Feys+Hobbs Canteen is open seven days a week at 2249 Oak Bay Ave. Monday to Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Sunday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. For more info, call 250-590-5761 or go to feysandhobbs.com.
EAT MAGAZINE MAY | JUNE 2012
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vancouver Bitter Tasting Room | 16 West Hastings St. | 604.558.4658 | www.bittertastingroom.com
Pop Goes the Dinner
EAT MAGAZINE MAY | JUNE 2012
Underground dining in Vancouver has become so common that its cachet of exclusivity and mystery has devolved slightly over the last couple of years. But, not to worry, for in its place has quietly stepped the pop-up dinner, a slightly more legal—yet still intriguing—event that will appeal to those seeking the unexpected, unusual and unknown. Dinners can be stand-up or sit-down affairs at art galleries, retail stores or cooking schools, and—thanks to the communal nature of most of them—you’re bound to meet at least a few new faces before the mains are cleared. As for who is behind these events, one should look for the most part to the catering world. Kale and Nori (www.kaleandnori.com), a partnership between chef Jonathan Chovancek and mixologist/sommelier Lauren Mote, has been running its “Bittered Sling” series of pop-up dinners at Kale and Nori’s Lauren Mote and Legacy Liquor Store in False Creek for the past year. Jonathan Chovancek These bi-weekly food and cocktail pairing competi-
The neighbourhood used to be part of that stretch of East Hastings Street that one would drive through quickly, with averted eyes. These days, like many other parts of the Downtown Eastside, it is home to a burgeoning urban—and upscale—crowd, with the likes of the London Pub and Save On Meats offering casual, yet trendy fare and tipples. A few doors away from the former lies Bitter, Sean Heather’s latest addition to the expanding empire that includes The Irish Heather, Shebeen, Salt, Judas Goat, Everything Café, etc. As the name implies, it’s all about the beer here, both what’s on tap and in the bottle. Eight rotating draughts mainly span B.C. with the likes of Back Hand of God from Crannog Ales and Doughhead from Vancouver Island Brewery, with a few imports from Toronto and Quebec to round things out. As for the bottles, over 60 on the standing menu range from the $5 Moosehead from St. John, New Brunswick, to the $32 Ommegang “Three Philosophers” from New York, with some healthy additions from Belgium, Scotland, Thailand and Germany. Most interesting were the beer cocktails, an absolutely new experience for me. The Bitter Chill ($9) was a memorable and herbally mix of organic lager, El Jimador reposado tequila, muddled ginger and lime, finished with some salt and pepper. If beer really isn’t your thing, you can settle for a nice, tall shandy or go completely off the hops for a glass of wine or a snifter of good Rittenhouse rye. The food was where I truly had a field day. Lots of protein to soak up the hops is the order of the day. An organic Rabbit River Farm egg is scotched ($3.95), wrapped in housemade sausage and deep fried. The handmade pretzels with mustard ($3.50) were nice, but the Welsh rarebit ($4.75) and sausage roll ($3.50) were hearty, happymakers, with caramelized onions on the former lending a rich, sweet note to the whole cheese-on-toast shtick. If you’re extra hungry, try one of the sausage plates, all handmade by master butcher Drews Driessen. The Kreiner ($16 for five links) is a cheese-studded wonder full of porcini mushrooms. There are even a couple of mains like the cassoulet ($18) with duck confit, pork belly and Toulouse sausage. It’s one of the most comforting “comfort” menus I’ve come across in a goodly while. —By Anya Levykh
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tions each feature a guest bartender and a theme spirit (recent dinners revolved around Hendricks gin and Flor de Cana rum). Guests are led through an interactive tasting by the guest bartender, and then dinner, during which a different cocktail is paired with each course. “The dinner is designed to amplify the character of the gin,” states Mote, “and, like all our menus, is completely seasonal and sustainable.” Chovancek, who was the chef for CBC’s Village on a Diet, specializes in thoughtful, locally-sourced menus. The Flor de Cana dinner includes “jerked” chicken with lemon bitters and a pistachio and mint sauce, spot prawn tamale with smoky yam and pomegranate salad, and a Pemberton Meadows beef oxtail curry with blue potatoes and mint, root pickles, and taro crisps. Guests can rate the bartender’s pairing skills during the dinner, and the two top-scoring bartenders from the year compete in a final event for a grand prize. And the price for all this fun? $60 includes your gratuity and taxes, and covers the interactive seminar, four cocktails, hors d’oeuvres and a three-course meal. For those looking for a more alternative, slightly left-of-centre experience, David Gunawan’s monthly ph5 (email@example.com) series focuses on getting back to the roots of food, using old-fashioned techniques and highlighting local producers. Gunawan, who was formerly EC at West Restaurant, will soon be donning his toque again at Wildebeest on West Hastings Street. “ph5 is about getting back to the source of what we eat, it’s an educational process,” explains Gunawan. “We want to bring back techniques that were used for generations, like aging birds.” Past meals have been planned around specific themes, like the recent “Diary of a Dairy Cow.” Dishes progressed according to the age of a cow, so the meal started with milk, then went on to eight-month-old cow’s tongue, then striploin from a one-year-old cow, followed by 14-month-old cow’s heart and three-year-old brisket. The latter was cured for three weeks, and aged in hay before being slightly charred and shaved in paper-thin slices. “Everything is locally sourced, we’re working closely with the farmers, and are even raising our own pigs,” enthuses Gunawan. The locations have ranged from cafeterias not normally open at night to his business partner’s restaurant. The end goal is to create a regular series of dinners that will be held at Wildebeest and feature various chefs around the city. The focus of ph5 is the collaboration of not only chefs and producers, but also pottery makers, florists, artists and winemakers. “We’re really just trying to create an outlet for people to express their creativity, to experiment with their ideas.” This is obviously a labour of love for Gunawan and his cohorts, as the price for a dinner ($70 including tax and gratuity for six courses plus wine pairings) is just enough to cover operating costs. The chefs cook, plate and serve the dishes, and even do the washing up afterward. Upcoming dinners will include chefs like Hamid Salimian of Diva at the Met. On the more casual front, chef Owen Lightly, owner of Butter on the Endive Catering (www.butterontheendive.ca), has been running his series of pop-up dinners for over a year to mostly sold-out crowds. The most recent event was a stand-up affair at a pop-up shop in Gastown called The Found and the Freed (so, yes, it was a pop-up dinner at a pop-up shop). Guests sampled various canapés, duck confit ravioli in porcini and pine nut broth, seared scallops with bacon-wrapped salsify, and inventive cocktails that ranged from the classic Mai Tai to nouveau gin and housemade bitters creations—all for the bargain price of $25. Regardless of where your palate and sense of adventure leads you, chances are once you start “popping,” it will be hard to stop. —By Anya Levykh
OLD VINES is the meeting place of FRESH local ingredients paired with the fruitful rich style of Quails’ Gate wines. Our menu showcases the very best SUSTAINABLE farm-to-table items the Okanagan has to offer. By GROWING our own vegetables & fruits and partnering with LOCAL GROWERS , we are able to create CULINARY items that demonstrate the incredible FLAVOURS of our beautiful region. Open Year Year R Round ound | 250 769 769 2500 | quailsgate.com quailsgate.com
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WE LOVE PIES. Sweet, savoury…. doesn’t matter. All good. Who can resist that gentle yielding pull from pizza crust precariously topped with goodies? And one could rhapsodize for hours about fruit pies. Pure poetry and comfort – those tender nuggets of warm summer fruit encased in flaky dough. Add some ice cream. Heavenly. That’s what love’s all about.
Plenty o’ Pie Recipes and food styling by JENNIFER DANTER • Photography by MICHAEL TOURIGNY
Bigger Is Better Strawberry-Rhubarb Pie HEAP THE FRUIT HIGH WHEN COOKED. EVEN THOUGH IT’S NEITHER SEASONAL OR LOCAL I LOVE THE ADDITION OF ORANGE IT ADDS A BOOZY HEADY FLAVOUR TO THE FRUIT DITTO THE ALMOND — IT’S THAT FLAVOUR-LAYERING THING — YOU WON’T PICK IT OUT AS AN INGREDIENT — BUT IT ADDS TO THAT ROUND, FULL DELICIOUS MOUTH FEEL 6 cups sliced rhubarb 1 pint strawberries, halved (about 4 cups) 3/4 cup brown sugar 1/4 cup granulated sugar ¼ cup cornstarch 1 egg yolk 2 Tb coarse sugar ¼ tsp almond extract (optional) 1 orange peel, grated (optional) Pastry dough for double-crust pie 3 knobs of butter Preheat oven to 400F In a large bowl, toss rhubarb with strawberries, sugars, cornstarch, almond extract and orange peel. Let mixture sit to macerate while you roll out the pie dough. On a flour-dusted counter, roll out bottom pastry shell. Line a 9-in pie plate. Leave a pastry overhang on edge. Roll out top pastry into a disc slightly larger than the pie plate. Stir fruit mixture to redistribute any juices, then scrape the whole shebang into the pie plate. It should be heaped high and look impressive! Dot filling with a few knobs of butter. Gently and carefully cover with top pastry. Press pastry edges together, then fold over and crimp. Place pie on a baking sheet (that will make getting it in and out of oven much easier). Whisk egg yolk with enough water to loosen mixture, then generously brush over top. Using the tip of a knife, score pastry to make some steam vents or place a pie bird in centre. Sprinkle pastry with coarse sugar. Bake for 25 minutes, then reduce oven temperature to 350F. Continue to bake until pastry is deep golden and filling starts to bubble, about 1 hour. If Cont’d on pg. 26
pastry starts to darken too quickly, loosely cover with a sheet of foil.
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Take the DIY approach to grilling pizza.
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DIY Pizza Bar The idea here is to make several small pizzas. Mix, match, and go wild. One word of caution: less is more. Resist the urge to overload. Keep ‘em wanting more.
Spinnakers growlers! Come in for your fill or refill your clean & dry recycled favourites
Grilled Zucchini, Feta & Chili Topper Slice 3 zucchini into rounds. Place in a bowl and drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle with sea salt and ground fresh pepper. Grill zucchini over mediumhigh heat, turning over occasionally, until lightly charred. Remove each piece back to bowl as done. Then toss with 2 thinly sliced red chilies, 1 cup crumbled feta (Try Salt Spring Island) and ¼ cup toasted pine nuts or chopped hazelnuts. Finish pizza with handfuls of fresh basil.
Caramelized Fennel + Smoked Trout Topper
Spring is in the air at Spinnakers! Patio season! Come and enjoy some delicious craft beer and local farm fresh food!
Slice 3 small heads fennel into thin slivers (tip: leave core intact and shave on a mandolin). Thinly slice 2 leeks. Melt about 3 Tbsp butter in a large frying pan over medium heat, then swirl in 3 Tbsp olive oil. Add fennel and leeks. Stir in 2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar and a generous pinch of sugar. Cook, stirring often, until fennel turns meltingly soft and starts to caramelize, about 1 hour. Reduce heat to medium-low if it starts to darken too quickly. Remove from heat and crumble in a goodly amount of hot or cold smoked salmon (visit FAS for options). Finish pizza with fresh slivers of red onion and a pile of fresh mint. Finish with slivers of Alpindon (from Kootenay Alpine Cheese Co.).
What To Do Generously oil grill and preheat barbecue to medium-high. Place rounds of dough on grill. When it puffs and underside chars and stiffens, flip crust. Working quickly, spoon a few Tbsp béchamel sauce to edges of dough, then scatter with toppings.Or, remove dough from grill. Place grill-side up on a cutting board. Take your time and spread with sauce, then add toppers. Return to barbecue. Close grill and reduce heat to medium. Cook until warm and crusty. Finish with a drizzle of olive oil and sprinkles of fresh herbs, thinly sliced red onion or slivers of cheese. To bake pizzas, preheat oven to 500F. Brush edges of dough with olive oil; spread 3 to 4 Tbsp béchamel sauce over pizza rounds and place on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake until it starts to puff, 3 to 4 minutes, then throw on toppers. Bake until warmed through, about 3 minutes. Finish with oil and fresh herbs. Note: Cooking times are variable depending on size of pizzas and type of grill. Use your judgment.
Located on Victoria’s Inner Harbour 308 Catherine St., Victoria BC 250.386.2739 www.spinnakers.com
Rosemary & Black Pepper Pizza Sauce This is a classic bechamel sauce - a creamy alternative to classic tomato sauce. Velvety in texture and less acidic in taste, it's a good matc for summer veggies and smoked fish. It's the kind of sauce that lets the toppings have the glory. 4 sprigs rosemary 3 peppercorns, coarsely crushed ¼ cup butter 6 Tbsp flour Grated nutmeg, to taste Pour milk into a saucepan. Coarsely bend and crush rosemary springs, then stir into milk along with peppercorns. Heat milk, stirring often, just until it almost comes to a boil. Remove from heat and let cool until barely warm. Strain and discard solids. Melt butter in a medium-size saucepan over medium heat. Sprinkle with flour and whisk until smooth. Cook until mixture turns light golden, 2 to 3 minutes. Gradually whisk in milk, about ½ cup at a time, whisking until smooth between each addition. While whisking, bring to a boil, then reduce heat and gently simmer, stirring often until “floury taste” is cooked out, 4 to 5minutes. Makes about 2/12 cups
The truth This makes more than you will probably need. But why go to all that trouble for a small batch? Freeze leftovers for the next time.
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THE RETURN OF THE HUNT Hunting still needs some good PR, but there’s a growing number of hunters who see it less as a sport and more as a sustainable food source. BY SANDRA MCKENZIE
Wild game meat might be the ultimate inconvenience food. Consider the process: up well before the crack of dawn, then the hours or days spent in the field or on a mountain slope, or knee deep in frigid water at the edge of a raging stream, waiting patiently for the elusive prey, whether fish, fowl or fur. Then, once spotted, a splitsecond chance to bring it down cleanly and quickly—there are no second acts in the hunting game. Follow that with the brutally unpleasant but necessary task of cleaning and gutting the animal, then hauling the carcass, which can weigh as much as several hundred pounds, out of the wilderness and back home. All for the sake of a freezer full of meat. And possibly an earful of abuse from your vegan neighbour. So why would anyone do all that, when a pound of hamburger from your local supermarket gives you change back from a five dollar bill? “It just makes sense to forage for your food, and hunting game is the ultimate in foraging— it’s the motherlode,” says Andrew Moyer, owner of Victoria’s Ottavio Italian Bakery and Delicatessen. “Meat that you’ve hunted yourself is lean and clean. There are no antibiotics, no hormones. It tastes like good, healthy wilderness.” Though hunting is arguably a sustainable and environmentally sound way to harvest meat, and a healthy option to the well-documented horrors of industrial farming practices, the optics remain, well, pretty negative. PETA, for example, argues that hunting is unnecessary and unsporting and estimates that as much as 50 percent of all hunted
EAT MAGAZINE MAY | JUNE 2012
animals are wounded, and then left to die in pain and misery by uncaring hunters. Some of the bias against hunting is undoubtedly well-earned. “There are a lot of sloppy hunters out there,” Moyer concedes. “There’s some validity to the health authority’s ban on selling wild game. In our deli, for example, we sell elk salami, but the elk is farmed, not wild.” Moyer notes, though, that the perception of the hunter as an unthinking, uncaring thrill killer is undergoing a dramatic change as consumers become more and more involved with their food, and mindful of where it comes from and how it’s been handled. “We have a lot of friends in the food industry who are becoming interested in hunting and foraging, which is a good thing, because the hunting community is getting older.” Hunting offers nourishment other than the edible variety, he adds. Chief among those is the opportunity to learn primal skills such as patience and observation. “You don’t need a lot of equipment, but you do need a lot of time, most of which is spent just watching and listening. You can’t focus on anything else because you have to pay attention if you’re going to spot a grey-brown animal that’s camouflaged against a greybrown backdrop.” Just getting back in touch with the natural world is another underappreciated benefit of adopting the hunter-gatherer approach to life, says Moyer. “While you’re waiting for
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game, you can look around you. Maybe pick some mushrooms or some wild greens for a salad, or collect some firewood, or just get some exercise. It’s like having the world’s best supermarket outside your door.” In Vancouver, B.C. Parks area supervisor (Sunshine Coast) Dylan Eyers is launching EatWild, a culinary and environmental venture that aims to bring people face to face with their dinner. A dedicated hunter and forager, Eyers is as confident and meticulous chopping onions and measuring out seasonings in his east end Vancouver kitchen as he is in the field bringing down and dressing the game animals that will provide the food he loves to share with friends, family and complete strangers. Eyers’s hunter ethic seems a strange disconnect from his urban surroundings. East Vancouver is, after all, the locus of the city’s vegetarian/vegan/raw foodist culture. Nevertheless, on a sunny Sunday afternoon his kitchen is buzzing with activity as he, along with friends and helpers, prepares a wild meat feast for 14 that night. The menu is ambitious. Appetizers include slivers of wild goose breast, cooked to medium rare and garnished with a wild blueberry sauce, and morels lightly fried in butter. Elk and venison roasts, hunted last autumn in the mountains of Northern B.C., are the main events, with saffron risotto and smashed turnips as side dishes. When I compliment him on his skills and the menu, he demurs. “I don’t cook like a chef, but I do try to cook like a host”. While he may not have the finesse of a master chef, Eyers is indeed an accomplished cook. The game meats are robustly flavoured, and expertly seasoned, and the sides are hearty, satisfying fare perfect for a blustery winter evening. Eyers grew up eating the wild game that his father regularly brought home, and, under his father’s keen eye, learned the necessary skills as a teenager. Hunting is his passion, and the excess meat that he harvests becomes fodder for bartering, an important part of his social and economic life. “Hunting is about food,” he says. “It’s how I can feed my community, and what allows me to do things like this,” indicating the dinner preparations. This party is not entirely altruistic, though. It’s an initial step towards establishing EatWild as a business that will teach people the basics of hunting in threeday workshops held on a private ranch in the Okanagan. To cover his expenses and his helpers’ time, Eyers requests a very reasonable $30 donation from each of the guests.
In addition to these, Eyers also offers sausage seminars in Vancouver, in which groups of nine or so are led through the intricacies of grinding, seasoning, then stuffing wild game sausages. (Disclaimer: I attended the first of these seminars, which was a hilarious good time that that also yielded about five pounds of delicious duck, elk, and bison sausages for each participant to take home). The group that convened for dinner was a pretty typical collection of 30-something Vancouverites. They included IT and media professionals, a community organizer, a real estate developer and a city police officer. What was different about this dinner party, though, was that none of the guests knew anyone else, other than his or her partner. They had learned about the EatWild event mostly through word-of-mouth, or, in one case, by stumbling across the EatWild website while looking for something else. What fuelled the conversation was their shared interest in food, specifically in learning how to eat more sustainably and naturally. Hunting appeared to hold no negative connotations for this crowd, though none seemed likely to jettison their urban roots in favour of a Paleolithic lifestyle, even for a weekend. “People are beginning to pay attention to where their food comes from,” Eyers says. “They’re beginning to understand why ‘local’ is good, and that there are seasons for everything, including meat. I want hunting to be a part of that conversation. I know there are a lot of challenging stereotypes about hunting out there, and I want to counter those stereotypes with a positive image.” Moyer and Eyers share a philosophy of ethical harvesting that even PETA would have a hard time arguing with. Says Moyer, “If you kill an animal, you have to revere the meat, take care of it, treat it responsibly, and don’t waste it.” Eyers concurs. “Hunting is, first of all, about food, and about sharing, and taking responsibility for that food.” For information on hunting, and hunting regulations, Moyer suggests reading up on the subject (he recommends Making the Most of Your Deer by Dennis Walrod), then visiting a sporting goods store to sign up for the provincially regulated safety course (Conservation Outdoor Recreation Education program) and picking up the study materials. For more information about EatWild’s hunting workshops and sausagemaking seminars, visit www.eatwild.ca
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Simply connect the dots on the Lakeshore Wine Route to discover the heritage of the Okanagan’s oldest vineyards: CedarCreek, St. Hubertus, Summerhill and Tantalus. With tastings, tours and dining, we are all only a short scenic drive from downtown Kelowna. Come spend the day with us.
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Dockside in Tofino - the FEAST! line-up left to right: Joel Aubie (Shelter Restaurant), Nicolas Nutting (The Pointe), Matt Wilson (The Point), Cameron Young (Tacofino), Margo Bodchon (Sea Shanty), Nick Donaldson (The Common Loaf ), Mare Dewar (Schooner Restaurant), Tracy Head (Breakers), Liam Paul (Long Beach Lodge), Bobby Lax (TUCG), John Gilmour (Trilogy), Vincent Fraissange (The Spotted Bear Bistro), Bonnie Martell (Wildside Grill).
Second Annual Feast! Culinary Festival in Tofino Rarely do tourists get the chance to experience what life is really like for the locals in the places they visit. An upcoming culinary festival provides the chance to do just that on the west coast of Vancouver Island. Feast! Tofino is a 16-day EAT Magazine sponsored event that celebrates the stock and trade of this fishing-turned-tourist towns – wild salmon and spot prawns. “Feast is about celebrating the food that we have here – specifically seafood,” said Shelter Restaurant chef Joel Aubie. “It’s about salmon and prawns and all we get to enjoy here on the west coast.” Chef Vincent Fraissange of the Spotted Bear Bistro says Tofino’s chefs are keen to share their boat-to-table seafood access with visitors and visiting chefs. “With Feast! we are showcasing the products we have readily available in Clayoquot Sound and how we use it in our restaurants,” he said. “It’s really nice to be able to share it with our friends from the city as well and see how they showcase it.” There are many salmon and spot prawn events planned for this year’s second annual festival, said organizer Trish Dixon, although not quite as many as last year. “What we’ve done is taken the best events and focused on those,” she said. “We really got a good idea of what people, both tourist and locals, want.” By pairing down the festival to 16 days from last year’s 29, there are also fewer days with multiple events, making it easier to take advantage of all Feast! Tofino has to offer. The main events are two Saturday dockside festivals on the wharf on May 19th and May 26th. On these days, the Tofino wharf is buzzing with activity amidst tents with food samples, chef demonstrations, grape stomping, live music and entertainment. The first dock festival kicks off salmon week and the second is the starting point for spot prawn week. Many other events are planned for the intervening time, including prix fixe menus and accommodation and excursion specials at local restaurants and hotels. Not only will Tofino’s best chefs be taking part in Feast! Tofino, but Vancouver’s culinary scene is well represented with the following chefs taking part: Nico Schuermans of Chambar, Joel Wannatabe of Bao Bei, Tom Lee of Edible at the Market, Lucias Syme of La
EAT MAGAZINE MAY | JUNE 2012
Quercia, JC Poirier of Campagnolo, and Justin and Lea Ault of Hapa Ikazaya. From Victoria, Chef Kunal Ghose of Redfish Bluefish, and Chef Andrew Springett of the Southern Alberta Institue of Technology (formally of the Pointe Restaurant at the Wickaninnish Inn and Fetch at Black Rock Resort) will also be attending as guest chefs. Look for this visiting culinary talent to take part in guest dinners at local eateries and other special events. For example, take in a beachside barbecue with Red Can Gourmet’s Chef Tim May and Lee of Edible at the Market at Pacific Sands Beach Resort or go motocross biking with Storm Surf Shop and Shelter Restaurant, with a stop for a picnic lunch and a barbecue at the end of the day. Also combine activities like a trip to the Hot Springs or fly fishing with a culinary component. All types of accommodation providers, from B&Bs to hotels are also getting in on the Feast! Tofino action. Stay and play packages that are being offered include some culinary element as well. And the festival is designed to be ending just as another great Tofino event is starting. “The whole concept for Feast! is we want it to tie into the Tofino Food and Wine Festival,” said Dixon. “It’s great for people visiting and also for guest chefs to be able to experience that as well.” Before Feast! kicks off, there is a warm-up event that is designed to give a taste of the festival. Sneak Peak into Feast is a throwback to 70s progressive dinners, where each of the five course will be offered at five different establishments involved in the festival. The transportation-provided event is set for May 13th. All in all, it’s a great time to be here, says Kirsten Soder, general manager of Tourism Tofino: “"With great accommodation and activity specials, 'Dine About' menus, dock festivals and other special events, Feast offers a chance to experience many of Tofino's world-renowned attributes before our busier summer season." —By Jen Dart For more information about Feast! Tofino and all its associated events and specials, please visit www.feastbc.com or follow them on Twitter (@FeastBC) and Facebook.
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master cooking class
Wrap any fish in parchment with a generous dollop of seasoned butter for a simple, memorable meal. Text and food styling by DENISE MARCHESSAULT Photography by CAROLINE WEST
Fish en Papillote
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32 EAT MAGAZINE MAY | JUNE 2012
he French call it poisson en papillote—a simple meal that brings back one of my fondest food memories. We exchanged homes with a family from Bordeaux last summer. Their home was ancient with a modest kitchen and an oven so small we named it Le Easy Bake. I grew accustomed to the limitations of our pint-sized fridge and the need to buy food in small, thoughtful quantities. Fresh fish from the poissonnier was the dinner plan that night. I topped each fillet of cod with thin coins of summer squash and a generous daub of butter flavoured with fresh herbs and lemon juice. Wrapping each bundle in parchment, I baked the parcels until the paper puffed up from the steam. The pleasure of watching everyone tear open their surprise packages—and pause just long enough to inhale the fragrance—still makes me smile. The fish was perfectly moist, steamed in its own juices and bathed in herb-scented butter. Cooking fish in parchment is easy; you hardly need a recipe. Simply place a piece of fish, any type you like, on a piece of parchment with your favourite vegetables, herbs and butter. (Foil will do, if you don’t mind a camping-style presentation.) Seal the parchment edges with egg white, crimp closed and bake until the packages are puffed with steam, about eight minutes. Because you can’t test the fish for doneness, I usually sacrifice one parcel (mine, naturally) by ripping it open to have a peek—I want to be sure the fish is slightly underdone because it continues to steam until the parcel is opened. Overcooking your fish will zap its succulence, so rally the troops to the table while the fish is still in the oven.
The vegetables you select must cook in sync with the fish. Because of the brief cooking time, they must be either precooked, in the case of a dense potato, or sliced thin enough to steam briefly, as with squash. Some vegetables, like julienned peppers and carrots, need little cooking and add a welcome textural contrast. You’ll need a generous pinch of salt to season your fish and a courageous amount of butter to keep it moist. Steaming fish and vegetables without fat may feel virtuous, but it makes for a disappointing fish en papillote. Nothing compares to the magic of butter— it keeps your fish succulent and provides an instant sauce for your vegetables. Plain butter is good but flavoured butter, called “compound butter,” is even better. The process is simple: combine softened butter with chopped herbs (or spices) and add an acidic ingredient to the mix—lemon juice is often used, but vinegars also work well. Place the compound butter on a piece of plastic wrap or parchment; roll into a cylinder and place in the refrigerator or freezer until needed. Lemon and parsley are traditional flavourings, but butter is happy with any seasoning—how about cilantro, lime and jalapeno or anchovies and smoked paprika? There are no rules when it comes to compound butter. Try adding chipotle peppers, olives, reduced stock, horseradish, mint, crushed cardamom or ginger. Tinker with your favourite seasonings and come up with your very own signature butter. With a stash of compound butter in the freezer, you have an instant flavour enhancer at the ready. It’s a great ally for fish, but it also livens up vegetables, grilled chicken or beef and adds a luxurious silky finish to soups and sauces. It doesn’t take a trip to France to create an unforgettable meal. Gift-wrap your fish in parchment this spring and create your own memorable version of fish en papillote.
FIsh en Papillote can be assembled and refrigerated until guests arrive
WINE PAIRING Halibut en Papillote with Olive and Caper Butter The flavours of this dish are very pure. Mirror these pure flavours with an unoaked, crisp white like a mineraldriven Chardonnay, or a lemon and bitter almond Verdicchio from central Italy. —Treve Ring
FIND THE RECIPES ON THE FOLLOWING PAGES
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Halibut en Papillote with Olive and Caper Butter Serves four. 3/4 cup cherry tomatoes, sliced in half 1 Tbsp olive oil 1 tsp fresh thyme leaves, finely chopped Kosher salt 1 lb fresh halibut, divided into 4 equal portions, skin removed 2 small sweet yellow peppers, thinly sliced 2 small sweet orange peppers, thinly sliced Olive and caper butter 4 sprigs thyme Parchment paper Egg white, lightly beaten with a fork Vegetable oil
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Preheat oven to 375°F. Spread the tomatoes on a parchment or foil-lined baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with fresh thyme and a generous pinch of kosher salt. Roast in the oven for about 7 to 10 minutes until softened and aromatic. Cut 4 sheets of parchment large enough to encase the fish and vegetables, about 16by- 12 inches each. Fold each sheet in half, leaving four “envelopes” about 8-by-12 inches. Open an envelope and place one portion of halibut in the centre of one side; season with kosher salt. Add a quarter of the sliced peppers and roasted tomatoes. Top with a disk of olive and caper butter (about 1 generous tablespoon) and a sprig of fresh thyme. Using a pastry brush, lightly coat the edges of the parchment with the beaten egg white. Fold the parchment in half to enclose the fish, and press the edges together to seal. Fold or crimp the parchment edges to reinforce the packet. (It’s important to seal the edges properly, to keep the steam in.) Using a pastry brush, lightly coat the top of the packet with the vegetable oil to prevent it from burning. Place on a baking tray. Repeat with remaining ingredients. If not cooking immediately, refrigerate until ready to cook. If assembling the packets in advance, allow them to warm at room temperature, about 15 to 20 minutes, before placing in the oven. Bake for about 7 to 8 minutes or until the packets puff up and the fish is just cooked. Serve immediately on warmed dinner plates. Allow your guests to open each packet themselves.
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2 leeks, white parts only, sliced 1 Tbsp butter 1 Tbsp water ½ tsp kosher salt, plus more as needed 4 medium-sized red potatoes, steamed or simmered until just cooked 1 lb salmon fillet, divided into 4 equal portions, skin removed Cilantro butter Parchment paper Egg white, lightly beaten with a fork Vegetable oil Preheat oven to 375°F. In a small saucepan, cook the leeks with the 1 Tbsp of plain butter and water, covered, on medium-low heat until completely softened, about 30 minutes. Season with kosher salt and check for seasoning, adding additional salt if necessary. Slice the steamed potatoes about a quarter inch thick and divide into four portions. Cut 4 sheets of parchment large enough to encase the fish and vegetables, about 16by-12 inches each. Fold each sheet in half, leaving four “envelopes” about 8-by-12 inches. Open an “envelope” and place a layer of potatoes in the centre of one side; this will CONT’D ON NEXT PAGE
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form a base for the salmon. Season potatoes lightly with kosher salt and place the salmon on top; also season the fish lightly with kosher salt. Top the salmon with a quarter of the cooked leeks and a disk of cilantro butter, about 1 generous tablespoon. Using a pastry brush, lightly coat the edges of the parchment with the beaten egg white. Fold the parchment in half to enclose the fish, and press the edges together to seal. Fold or crimp the parchment edges to reinforce the packet. (Itâ€™s important to seal the edges properly, to keep the steam in.) Using a pastry brush, lightly coat the top of the packet with the vegetable oil to prevent it from burning. Place on a baking tray. Repeat with remaining ingredients. If not cooking immediately, refrigerate until ready to cook. If assembling the packets in advance, allow them to warm at room temperature, about 15 to 20 minutes, before placing in the oven. Bake for about 7 to 8 minutes or until the packets puff and the fish is just cooked. Serve immediately on warmed dinner plates. Allow your guests to open each packet themselves.
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In the bowl of a food processor, combine all the ingredients except the butter. When the mixture resembles a fine purĂŠe, add the softened butter. Alternatively, chop the herbs, garlic and peppers finely; add the sugar, salt, lemon juice and Olive butter with capers, anchovies softened butter. Check the seasoning, adding more pepand smoked paprika & piquant pers, salt and lemon as desired. cilantro butter with jalapeĂąo peppers It should have a spicy kick and a tart finish. Spoon the mixture onto a piece of parchment, wax paper or plastic wrap and roll into a cylinder. Place in the fridge or freezer until ready to use. Compound butters can be stored in the freezer for up to six months.
Olive and Caper Butter Â˝ cup pitted olives, black and green varieties 3 anchovy fillets, mashed with a fork 2 Tbsp rinsed capers 1Â˝ tsp hot smoked paprika 1 tsp hot sauce (Sriracha or chili paste) Â˝ tsp sugar 1 tsp kosher salt Âź cup lemon juice 1 cup of butter, softened to room temperature Combine ingredients in the bowl of food processor and mix until well combined. Alternatively, chop the olives, anchovies and capers finely; add the paprika, hot sauce, sugar, salt, lemon juice and softened butter. Check the seasoning, adding more hot sauce, salt and lemon as desired. It should be piquant with a smoky finish. Spoon the mixture onto a piece of parchment, wax paper or plastic wrap and roll into a cylinder. Place in the fridge or freezer until ready to use.
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Yealands Estate Pinot Noir 2008, Central Otago, New Zealand * $23.00-25.00 (+164137) Central Otago, on the south island of New Zealand has quickly become a source of high quality pinot noirs. These are wines to look out for and the few Otago pinots found on liquor store shelves throughout this great province are generally a reliable bet as to quality. Very fruit forward with lovely cherry, plum and earth nuances. Supple and fresh with a taut acid structure and good length. Antiyal Kuyen 2009, Maipo Valley, Chile * $33.00-35.00 (+49320) All the wines of Antiyal are organic and biodynamically grown. Owner-winemaker Alvaro Epinoza is one of the planet’s leading proponents of biodynamic viticulture and visiting the family’s tiny vineyard in the Maipo is a revelation of sustainable agriculture. The wines are pretty interesting too! The 2009 Kuyen, which roughly translates to “moon” in the local Mapuche dialect, is a blend of Syrah (40%), Cabernet Sauvignon (37%), Carmenere (21%) and Petit Verdot (2%). It is medium-bodied with exotic spice, violets and ripe berry aromas. Supple yet concentrated with great purity. Vignerons de Buxy Buissonnier Cote Chalonnaise Rouge 2009, France * $27.00-30.00 Good affordable red Burgundy is an oxymoron. It is the Holy Grail, Camelot and the Tooth Fairy all rolled into one unattainable ball. But brace yourself; it is going to get a whole lot worse! The Chinese market has discovered the sublime delights of this magic kingdom and are about to hoover up all that is good and beautiful. This is a harbinger of impending financial Armageddon for Canadian Burgundy aficionados! Where the Grand Crus dare soar, the rest are sure to follow. Having shot my bolt, try this frisky little pinot from just off the beaten path. Soft and supple with spicy red cherry, leather and warm earth aromas and flavours that coat the palate and linger through the finish. Peter Lehmann Layers Red 2009, Barossa, Australia $17.00-20.00 (+200261) This hearty come-drink-me blend of five grapes from Australia’s Barossa Valley is polished, powerful and utterly delicious. It has a silky smooth texture with soft tannins and gobs of dark berry and chocolate flavours. Gran Mauro Primitivo del Salento 2010, Italy $16.00-17.00 (+818054) This hearty Primitivo from flat dusty plains of southern Italy is an alluring mélange of concentrated plum, cassis and vanilla flavours imbued with an attractive earthy fecundity. Balanced and full-bodied, with a patina of fine-grained tannins and a firm persistent finish.
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Jean Milan Brut Grand Cru Blanc de Blanc Special Champagne NV, France * $63.00-70.00 (+609214) When first introduced to this very small family owned Champagne house located in the tiny village of Oger, I did not know what to expect but I am happy to report that this gorgeous Blanc de Blanc did not let me down. Full bodied with apple, brioche and toasty nut flavours, slightly creamy with a fine gentle mousse nicely balanced with crisp acidity and a clean, dry finish. A lovely bottle of bubble.
Max Ferdinand Richter Estate Riesling 2009, Mosel Saar Ruwer, Germany* $27.00-30.00 (+610899) The Richter estate located in the heart of the Mosel has been in the family for over 300 years; so to say the family knows a thing or two about Riesling surely must be an understatement. The Estate Riesling is produced from vines under 15 years old using grapes of a least Kabinett and Spatlese quality. The quality level is then deliberately downgraded and vinified as simple Qualitatswein (Qba). This enables Richter to produce a style that is consistent from one vintage to the next. Off-dry with concentrated apricot, peach and mineral aromas and lovely vibrant fruit flavours balanced with a jolt of bracing acidity. Domaine Boudin Chablis 2009, France * $32.00-35.00 (+158394) The Boudin style strives for purity and the expression of terroir, thus if you enjoy Chardonnay that has just had an intimate relationship with the inside of an oak barrel, these wines are not for you. This is their entry level Chablis and it is a tremendous value! Hand picked and bottled without filtration, this stunning Chablis is full-bodied with racy acidity and citrus, green apple and oyster shell aromas. Very clean and fresh on the palate with restrained fruit flavours and great minerality through the finish! Fantastic!
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Vignerons des Terres Secretes Croix de Montceau Saint-Véran 2010, France * $24.00-26.00 Somewhat Chablis-like with green apple, citrus and spice flavours, slightly creamy on the palate, with good length, crisp acidity and a clean fresh finish. Another fine Burgundy at a great price. Venturi-Schulze Primavera 2010, Cobble Hill, Vancouver Island * $22.00-24.00 Wow, the power and intensity of this off dry white from Cobble Hill is mind-blowing. A blend of grapes from the cool 2010-growing season; Primavera came as a startling revelation. The acidity is electrifying but so is the nose and on the palate the wine is unbelievable with layers of concentrated peach, passionfruit and mandarin flavours. Robin Ridge Chardonnay 2009, SimilkameenValley, BC * $20.00-23.00 (+ 72637) Robin Ridge is a small family-owned winery located just outside of Keremeos in British Columbia’s beautiful Similkameen Valley. The 2009 Chardonnay is rich and spicy with tropical fruit flavours and a lush, creamy texture. Great length with plenty of toasty oak through the finish. Delicious.
Rosé JoieFarm Rosé 2011, Okanagan Valley, BC * $23.00-25.00 (+426551) Some people never figure this industry out; not so Michael Dinn and winemaker Heidi Noble. Their new world spin on old world classics are delicious and perhaps more importantly, dependable vintage after vintage! The 2011 Rosé is slightly off-dry with plenty of heft on the palate, mouth-watering acidity and intense aromas and flavours of red berries, cherries and sage. Fresh and clean with lip-smacking flavours and a long juicy finish. 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.
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what to drink with that—by Treve Ring
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 Pizzas: Red & White O U R
E X P E R T S
Josh Clark (JC), Sommelier, Il Terrazzo Ristorante Josh is a Certified Sommelier with over 20 years in the restaurant business. He has worked in Whistler, Vancouver and Victoria and also two years in London, England as Sommelier at Jamie Oliver’s restaurant, Fifteen. By night he’s at Il Terrazzo Ristorante in Victoria working with the largest wine list on Vancouver Island. By day you can find him online at winemonkey.ca, having “serious fun with wine.”
RED Pizza: Calabrese salame, tomato, mozzarella, red onion, black olives, anchovies JC - I like this dish because it can be paired a few different ways. The biggest deciding factor in this dish is the saltiness, coming from three main ingredients: the Calabrese, the olives and the anchovies. The easy solution to salt is acidity. Sure - you could do a white or sparkling wine, but I would drink red with good natural acidity and not too much body. You want to complement the dish without overpowering it. The Barbera grape from Piedmont in northern Italy would work well. Not only will it work with the saltiness of the big three, it will also complement the tomato component. Get a little crazy and stick the bottle in the fridge for 15 minutes before serving. The slight chill will soften the alcohol, lift the acidity and make for a refreshing pairing. JS - So often sommeliers have cast that demeaning label of 'a nice little pizza wine' at so many cheap and cheerful bottles. It's a pleasure to suggest a pizza wine in a real pizza eating scenario. This one calls for something spicy, high acid (tomatoes), and earthy and I will venture onto a limb and choose a red from Italy. However, the red I'm thinking of is a little off-the-beaten-track: coming from the southeast corner of Sicily and an area called Vittoria. Here you find Nero d'Avola and Frappato; both tend to
EAT MAGAZINE MAY | JUNE 2012
Jake Skakun (JS), Sommelier, L’Abattoir Jake Skakun is a writer and wine professional based in Vancouver; most days, you can find him on the floor at Gastown’s L’Abattoir where he oversees the wine program. He's been educated about wine from the ISG, WSET and UC Davis. With a couple more trips in the works, he has had a chance to tour many of the wine regions of France, Italy, Spain, the US and more locally, British Columbia. He blogs from time-to-time on the website Cherries and Clay. make wines that are lighter, fresher and prettier than you expect to come from this part of the world. A straight Frappato would be perfect - a Cru Beaujolais of Southern Italy - bright and fruity, with spice and an obvious Italian herbaceous character. MS - Mmmm… That’s my kind of pizza! I’ll go with one of the following three: Valpolicella (Italy – Superiore and/or Classico if you can get it), Bierzo (some lovely Spanish Bierzos out there – total bang for your buck!) or Sangiovese (New World – Loving Howard Soon’s Sandhill Small Lots version: xo). Look for a rustic flavour to the wine to enhance the salame / black olive components. At the same time, we don’t want anything too tannic or full flavoured as either would overpower the flavours and the weight of the pizza. Hence, I suggest old world wines or varietals with lighter bodies and moderate acidity.
WHITE Pizza: Porcini béchamel cream, roasted mushrooms, roasted onions, fresh thyme, fontina, pecorino cheeses JC - With this dish I am immediately drawn to the mushrooms and the cream. You need a wine that can stand up to the meatiness of the porcini but also compliment the creaminess of the sauce. I’ve been doing this pairing for a number of years and my choice has always been white Burgundy. The malolactic fermentation that the Chardonnay undergoes adds the necessary creaminess
Mireille Sauvé (MS), Sommelier, The Wine Umbrella Mireille started her wine career as ‘Canada’s Youngest Female Sommelier’ in 1997. With multiple gold medals for restaurant wine programs under her belt, Ms. Sauvé founded The Wine Umbrella in 2005, aiming to raise the bar of wine appreciation among Canadians. She has worked closely with Wine Australia, Wines of France, Wines of Germany, Wines from Spain and Wines of Portugal. to the wine. The carefully balanced use of oak adds the weight and structure needed to compliment the mushrooms. Being a cooler climate, white Burgundy also tends to have good acidity which helps cut through the richness of the cream sauce. Check out some great wines from appellations like Saint-Véran, Rully or Pouilly-Fuissé. JS - Many interesting whites come from the volcanic hills of Campania - the province of Naples and the home of Napoli-style pizza. It's also home to whites from grapes like Falanghina, Greco and Fiano. This pizza obviously cries for a wine that has a creamy texture (bechemel) is earthy (mushrooms) and has some mineral characters to play off the cheeses. I'd be intrigued to try a slice with a rich and floral styled Fiano di Avellino. MS - My top three wine pairings for this one are white Rhône (inexpensive version like Louis Bernard or Ogier from France), cool climate Chardonnay (look to BC or Niagara for these) and “Bordeaux Abordables” or ‘affordable Bordeaux’ (moderately priced white Bordeaux ranging from $10 to $20 a bottle). Drawing mushroomtype flavours out of dishes is a wine’s most honourable mission. As such, we look to wines that feature mineral flavours with dry overtones, all the while complementing the food’s herbaceous flavours. Additionally, the pizza’s creaminess from both the sauce and the cheese demands a stern level of austerity, present in all of these wines.
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VICTORIA: In addition to all the usual happy signs of spring –cherry blossoms, spring greens, morels, asparagus and rhubarb, a few other new sprouts seem to be emerging around one city block downtown. The Clay Pigeon opened its doors at the corner of Broughton St. and Blanshard Ave in mid-March. At the time of printing, the restaurant was still waiting for the sign to go up on the new black awning, but hungry downtown office workers have welcomed them. A first visit had me salivating over a moist Porchetta sandwich with apple and pickled fennel and a side of kale Caesar salad. They are open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, seven days a week. (7.30am – 10pm). Fully licensed with a good-looking wine list, this place is rapidly gaining a steady following. Down the street (1018 Blanshard), a subsidiary of The Little Thai Place has opened, called Noodle Cart. Serving up traditional Thai fare, including specialties from the Isan region, which differs from most Thai food in its use of sticky rice and fiery chilies. Open for lunch and dinner, seven days a week. (www.noodlecart.com) One block down, on Douglas, a sign is up for a new eatery called The Melt, with the promise of bringing great grilled cheese options to the downtown lunch crowd. More details to follow. Around the corner, on Broughton, the ever-changing space on the ground floor of the SoMa building has a new sign up announcing the imminent opening of the Cleopatra Café and Hookah Lounge. Along with twelve flavours of (tobacco-free) shishas, the café will be serving tea, Turkish coffee, and homemade desserts. Other news on the downtown food circuit include a big local chain’s rebranding: the flagship location of Romeo’s, at Blanshard and Fisgard has completed its renovation and is the first in the chain to implement the company’s new “modern restaurant and lounge concept”. The city gained an international candy shop when Oh Sugar opened on LoJo (561 Johnson St.), offering “sinfully good chocolates and sweets from around the world”. And a new spot on Herald St; Jam Café opened in early April and is poised to launch a fresh menu. For any food entrepreneurs looking for a change of scenery, Campbell River's own Cheddar & Co Specialty Foods is for sale. This successful, popular eatery, cheese emporium and deli has a loyal following and would best suit a culinary expert. For more information visit the website (www.cheddarandco.com) or call Michelle @ 250-830-0244. Bruce & Merrilee Stuart have announced the closing of The Wine Barrel after 19 years in operation. The license moves to a new location in the lower mainland. No local buyers were found. This season has seen some big accomplishments for a number of prominent members of Victoria’s food community. Chef Dwane MacIsaac, president of the Island Chef Collaborative and owner of PassionEat Foods has a new television show on CHEK TV called YUM! The program airs weekly on Thursdays at 8pm and each episode features a different local guest chef from the Island to cook with. Last but not least, Island Wineries of British Columbia, from the contributors of EAT magazine and edited by Gary Hynes, was awarded the Gourmand International Wine Books Award 2011 for Canada, and has been selected as a finalist for the Bill Duthie Booksellers’ Choice Award at BC Book Prizes. This award is presented to the originating publisher and author(s) of the best book in terms of public appeal, initiative, design, production and content. The 27th Annual BC Book Prizes awards gala will be held on Saturday, May 12 in Vancouver. Congratulations to Gary and all the EAT contributors who collaborated on this beautiful book. —Rebecca Baugniet Cont’d on the next page
F I E S TA WA R E F L A M I N G O F I E S TA WA R E F L A M I N G O
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www.eatmagazine.ca MAY | JUNE 2012
Weekend Getaways E s c a p e Yo u r N o r m a l
Seafood & Sushi Redefined.
Visit the Seagrille to experience our fresh approach to seafood & sushi in Victoria’s most spectacular seaside setting… Enjoy our Chef’s seasonally inspired menu with ingredients harvested from the sea and grown fresh on Vancouver Island. Watch our highly trained Japanese Sushi Chefs create a truly authentic “West Coast” sushi experience.
849 Verdier Ave 250.544.2079 www .BrentwoodBayResort.com
VANCOUVER: David Gunawan, former EC at West, will soon be running the kitchen at Wildebeest (120 West Hastings St., no website), the new joint venture between Abigail’s Party owner James Iranzad and The Diamond owner Josh Pape. Look forward to snout-to-tail cuts and lots of good tipples, thanks to the sommelier services of Lindsay Ferguson, formerly of Salt Tasting Room. Truffles (www.trufflesfinefoods.com) has a new café at VanDusen Botanical Garden, with former Relais and Chateaux chef, Reto Ballat, at the helm, as well as master barista, Massimo Perego. Look for fresh, housemade snacks and meals, afternoon tea, and fair trade coffees and teas. Darren Brown, the new EC at Fairmont Pacific Rim’s Oru (www.orucuisine.com), has launched a new menu, moving away from the Pan-Asian cuisine of former chef David Wong to a more Pacific Northwest-inspired focus, with glances to the Pacific Rim. Fairmont Hotels and Resorts has appointed their first-ever female executive chef in the history of the brand. Dana Hauser, a Fairmont veteran, will take over the EC duties at Fairmont Waterfront (www.fairmont.com/waterfront) and its restaurant, Herons West Coast Kitchen & Bar. Hauser will also be cooking at James Beard House in New York this month. John Blakely, owner of Bistro Pastis, has opened a second restaurant, Le Parisien (www.leparisien.ca), in the old Café de Paris location in the West End. The menu features boudin noir, rotisserie chicken, roasted bone marrow, and three kinds of tartare (beef, tuna and salmon). And in the ongoing pizza saga, Via Tevere (www.viateverepizzeria.com) is now bringing Neapolitan pizza to 1190 Victoria Drive. Run by first-generation Canadians who hail from, yes, Naples, look for authentic Napoletana street fare, a daily pasta dish, and lots and lots of pie. Tom Doughty and Rob Belcham, the brains behind Campagnolo and Campagnolo Roma, have closed their Refuel location on West 4th Ave, and partnered with first-time owner Ted Anderson to open Fat Dragon Bar-B-Q (www.fatdragonbbq.com) at 566 Powell St. The concept sees Asian flavours married to American southern barbecue methods. The in-house smoker will use local fruit woods for extra flavour. This season’s Top Chef Canada contestant Trevor Bird will be opening Fable (no website) at the former Refuel location at 1944 West 4 Avenue, with a farm-to-table mindset and contemporary Canadian menu. Also on Powell Street, Chris Stewart and Andrey Durbach, the pair behind Pied-à-Terre, Cafeteria and La Buca, are opening a new restaurant called The Sardine Can. The City of Vancouver has approved 12 new street carts to be added to the current roster, bringing the total number of carts to 103. The newbies include Ze Bite (French stew and sandwiches), Mogu (Japanese, pork katsu sandwiches), Rimfoodbaht (authentic Thai), and Feastro the Rolling Bistro (sustainable meat sandwiches). The first annual Vancouver International Tequila Expo (www.vancouvertequilaexpo.com) happens this month on May 12. Look for seminars, trade and consumer tastings, and opportunities to try tequilas not yet carried in B.C. Sweet endings…Cartems Donuterie (www.cartems.com) has opened with many raves for their organic, local and fresh doughnuts. Baked, vegan and gluten-free options are available. Try the honeyparmesan or earl grey versions. —Anya Levykh Cont’d on the next page
TOFINO: Hali where there a season in Tofin As we prepa season, there a The culinary fe start May 18 a down version o will feature one week on spot p prix fixe menu excursions are ganza. See the visit www.feast schedule of eve EAT is a sponso it leads into - th June 1-3 - a w anchored by G event on June Gardens, this e chefs and the from a slew www.tofinofood Congratulati chef Joel Aub season of Top C At press time A involvement in t on air. He did s experience tha Toronto, the sho they are grad challenges unti You’ve got t year with Mo
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EAT MAGAZINE MAY | JUNE 2012
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TOFINO: Halibut season has started and everywhere there are signs of the upcoming summer season in Tofino. As we prepare for the onslaught of another tourist season, there are quite a few exciting events to note. The culinary festival Feast! Tofino is scheduled to start May 18 and run through June 2. In a scaleddown version of last year’s inaugural festival, Feast! will feature one week focused on salmon and one week on spot prawns. Dock festivals, guest chefs, prix fixe menus around town, special events and excursions are all part of this culinary extravaganza. See the article in this edition (page 30) and visit www.feastbc.com for more information and a schedule of events. EAT is a sponsor of Feast! Tofino as well as the event it leads into - the Tofino Food and Wine Festival June 1-3 - a weekend-long series of events that is anchored by Grazing in the Gardens, the main event on June 2nd. Held at the Tofino Botanical Gardens, this event features samplings from Tofino’s chefs and the Island’s food purveyors, as well as from a slew of BC wineries. Please visit www.tofinofoodandwinefestival.com for information Congratulations to Shelter Restaurant head chef Joel Aubie for being part of the most recent season of Top Chef Canada on the Food Network. At press time Aubie couldn’t say much about his involvement in the show, as it had not yet concluded on air. He did say it was a “stressful but enjoyable” experience that was “once in a lifetime.” Filmed in Toronto, the show starts out with 16 competitors and they are gradually eliminated through cooking challenges until only one remains. You’ve got the chance to treat Mom right this year with Mother’s Day brunch at the Pointe
Restaurant at the Wickaninnish Inn on May 13 from 8am-2pm. The Pointe’s chef Nicholas Nutting has been busy travelling to various culinary events. In April he reunited with former Wickaninnish chefs Andrew Springett and Duncan Ly, as well as one of his mentor chef Michael Noble for an invite-only culinary event at the Hotel Arts in Calgary. On June 11th chef Nutting and Pastry Chef Matt Wilson will be guest chefs at another Relais & Châteaux property, Hastings House on Saltspring Island, for “Chefs Across the Water,” a guest chef program that raises funds for the promotion of local, organic food. Tofino’s own professional food lover Bobby Lax (he’s the coordinator for the Tofino-Ucluelet Culinary Guild and the Clayoquot Sound Oyster Festival) has expanded his activities to include a regular radio spot on the local Long Beach Radio. The Friday Funky Food Hour starts at 9am every Friday. The point of the show is to highlight the amazing people, ingredients and events that make eating on the west coast such a naturally pleasurable experience, says Lax. The Schooner Restaurant has been a Tofino staple for 54 years. Current chef Mare Bruce’s parents were the pioneers, and now she and her family continue to run the Schooner. New for this season are a lounge menu and an oyster bar menu. The Schooner has many Feast-related events scheduled; please visit www.feastbc.com and www.schoonerrestaurant.com for more information. —Jen Dart OKANAGAN: Spring time in the Okanagan- enjoy the blossoms blooming and the opening of new wineries including Saxon Winery (Summerland), Misconduct Winery, Upper Bench Estate Win-
ery (Naramata Bench Wineries), Terravista Vineyards (Penticton), Platinum Bench Estate Winery (Oliver) and Gold Hill Winery (Osoyoos). The Okanagan Spring Wine Festival runs from May 4th to May 13th. Highlight events include Discover the Kelowna Lakeshore Wineries Cherish Our Heritage, Gray Monk Winery’s 30th, 40th & 50th Anniversary Ultimate Chef’s Table Dinner, the Oliver Osoyoos wineries first Bannee Pig out at Covert Farms, and Summerhill Pyramid Winery’s Fertility Festival. www.thewinefestivals.com. Spirit Ridge Resort has two new restaurants. Newly opened fine wine dining Mica (previously Passa Tempo) run by well-known restaurateur, Dave Keeler also of the Sonora Room at Burrowing Owl and West Kelowna’s Kekuli Café of “don’t panic we have bannock” fame will be opening their second location on the May long weekend at the Nk’Mip beachfront which includes a large patio. Also, Moo-lix Ice-Cream well know by Kelownites celebrates the opening of their second location in Osoyoos. The Firehall Brewery, Oliver’s first microbrewery has officially opened with the release of the brewery’s flagship beer, the Stoked Amber Ale, in the Old Firehall Building below the Firehall Bistro. Excitement is building at Black Hills Winery as they ready to open their new tasting room and wine shop complete with poolside cabanas on June 5th - make sure to book a tasting. Okanagan Falls now has it’s own artisan coffee café - Dogtown Coffee Company. Enjoy a good cup of joe, Americano, cappuccino or latte featuring beans from local Okanagan roastery the Beanery as well as art from local artists. The 12 wineries of Okanagan Falls have recently formed
their own winery association. www.ofwa.ca Can a restaurant be far behind? Cheese-yes please! The Naramata Bench Wineries now boasts two artisan cheese boutiques where visitors can see cheeses being made and enjoy samples. The award-winning Poplar Grove Cheese Boutique is joined by just opened Upper Bench Winery which in addition to be a winery, houses local artisan cheese-maker, Shana Miller in a brand new state of the art creamery where delicious brie, blue & washed rind cheeses are made on site. Well known to islanders, and from the Cittaslow community of Cowichan Bay, the True Grain Bakery will excitedly be opening their second location in Summerland, in the space previously occupied by the Cake Box Bakery which closes its doors after 65 years with happy owners looking forward to their retirement. The Just Delicious Japanese Bistro is expanding and moving across the street to the location formerly occupied by the Vanilla Pod & Tapas Restaurant which has relocated to Poplar Grove Winery. Don’t miss a sake margherita on the patio this summer along with excellent sushi. The Wild BC Spot Prawn Festival returns to the Okanagan, with this year’s festival taking place in West Kelowna on Saturday, June 2nd at the Cove Resort. wildbcspotprawns.com Enjoy the best of the Okanagan spring including fresh herbs, blooms and asparagus. Both the Kelowna and Penticton outdoor Saturday Farmers markets are open. For a full list of Farmer’s markets operating in the Okanagan and BC visit www.bcfarmersmarket.org It’s good to be in the Okanagan. —Claire Sear
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DELIGHTFUL PAIRINGS. A PERFECT PARTNERSHIP.
t Street 60 ca ca
The Pointe Restaurant at the Wickaninnish Inn is the perfect place to savour the season, especially since we’ve partnered with the Tofino Ucluelet Culinary Guild and Tourism Tofino to bring you Feast! – a May celebration of our culinary and natural riches leading up to the 10th annual Tofino Food and Wine Festival in June. Enjoy a $40 discount per night and 3-course Feast! dinner. Call now for complete details.
11 pm urday
tel 1.800.333.4604 www.wickinn.com @TasteWickInnBC
www.eatmagazine.ca MAY | JUNE 2012
wine + terroir - By Michelle Bouffard and Michaela Morris
Cool is the New Hot
Cooler climate wines are leaner, cleaner, lower in alcohol and food’s very best friend. It’s no secret that wine drinkers have a love affair with rich, full-bodied reds. Go-to countries Chile, Argentina and Australia all gained popularity with round, supple, fruit-driven wines at affordable prices. Blessed with dream climates, these countries initially planted in warmer regions where grapes could easily reach full maturity. Eventually, though, producers were eager to offer another style of wine. Without abandoning what they built their reputation on, all three looked to regions with more marginal climates. They started exploring extremes of latitude and altitude as well as coastal areas where fog, rain, frost and lower temperatures may present a challenge. The resulting wines have a different profile characterized by lower alcohol, lighter body and vibrant acidity. Isn’t the secret to a lasting love affair to keep things fresh? Their labour of love has certainly rekindled our excitement. The heart of Chile is known as the Central Valley. Chile made its reputation on fullbodied Cabernet Sauvignon from this warm, dry and sunny nest. Visiting Chile and tasting through the selection offered at the Vancouver Playhouse International Wine Festival revealed a much more diverse picture of Chile’s wines. In the mid-’80s, producers ventured beyond the Central Valley and began planting vines in Casablanca. Located close to the coast, this valley is exposed to cooling maritime influences, like ocean breezes and morning fog. Today, it is known for producing some of Chile’s most vibrant Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. Try Cono Sur’s Pinot Noir and Casa Lapostolle’s Cuvée Alexandre Chard. The newer and neighbouring San Antonio Valley sits closer to the ocean so the impact is even more acute. The focus is on the same grapes that have been successful in Casablanca. Fresh, crisp Sauvignon Blanc from Undurraga and Montes can be found locally and are the perfect match with ceviche. The innovative spirit of Chile’s winemakers has also led them far north to the regions of Elqui and Limarí. Both feel the cooling effects of the Pacific Ocean, and in Elquí, some of the vineyards sit at 2,000 metres above sea level. The most exciting variety from these areas is Syrah—our personal coup de coeur from Chile. Syrah/Shiraz has thrived in Chile for a long time, but these cooler regions allow the country to offer a completely different style. Slightly leaner with more acidity and beautiful perfumed and meaty notes, they are akin to those coming from the Northern Rhône Valley. Amazingly, we are just starting to see Chile’s full potential. Chile’s leading figure and owner of Viña Errazuriz Eduardo Chadwick, recently ventured to the Aconcagua region. Costa where Santa Rita, has just planted new vineyards on the granite soil of Pumanque. Also, many estates are producing wine in the most southern valleys of Bío Bío and Malleco. Neighbouring Argentina is enjoying its own renaissance. Most of the wine produced there comes from the hospitable region of Mendoza. The ongoing trend is to plant Malbec at higher elevations for a more refreshing and elegant expression that highlights the grape’s floral and savoury side. However, the latest buzz comes from much further afield. The emerging region of Patagonia lies hundreds of miles south of Mendoza. Even when you’re in Argentina, it’s a trek to get there. Approaching Antarctica, it is associated with glaciers and penguins. Yet Patagonia boasts some of the most southerly vineyards in the world. While summer days are warm, winds are persistent and night temperatures drop dramatically, preserving freshness of aromas and acidity in the grapes. Malbec is of course planted here, but the real star is Pinot Noir. Recently, the owner and winemaker of Bodega Chacra, Piero Incisa della Rocchetta, shared his passion for the area during a visit to Vancouver. He describes it as an unforgiving place, but one blessed with an incredible luminosity. He goes on to explain that despite
daytime heat, wines often only achieve alcohol levels of 11.5 to12 percent. His Barda Pinot exemplifies the flavour profile you find there: elegant and silky with pure wild strawberry flavours. Associated with big lush Cab and Shiraz, Australia has been the biggest surprise. Eager to move beyond this stereotype, Australia is working hard to introduce trade and consumers to its cooler regions. Wines from these areas offer a different expression of familiar grapes as well as grapes not normally associated with Australia. On the west coast, Margaret River is cooled by currents from the Indian and Antarctic oceans and draws a comparison with Bordeaux. Indeed the Cabernets are more subtle and elegant with a fragrant aromatic lift and gravelly quality. Chardonnay is equally successful in Margaret River, with the best being beautifully textured and complex. One fine example after another has convinced us that this is currently Australia’s most exciting grape. Xanadu Next of Kin and Evans & Tate are affordable starting points and highly crab-worthy. Though it may be hard to believe, Australia even possesses spots that are cool enough to be taken seriously for Pinot Noir. In Victoria, in the southeast corner of the country, Mornington Peninsula juts out into the Bass Strait with no vineyard more than eight kilometres from the ocean. Kooyong and Yabby Lake are two highly regarded estates. The Yarra Valley is slightly further inland with vineyards planted at varying altitudes. Its Pinots are characterized by bright red fruit. The chilliest corner of all is the island of Tasmania. Grapes grown here are often used in sparkling wine production. When made as still wine, Tasmania’s Pinots display fresh herbal notes and pronounced acidity; such as the Josef Chromy. Finally, higher altitude vineyards in Eden and Clare Valley in South Australia have established themselves with dry, racy and lime-tinged Riesling. Always a favourite with our local spot prawns. But how “new” are cooler climate wines? In Europe, grapes have been growing in chillier areas for centuries. Germany is just about as far north as grapes ripen and, with the exception of southern wine regions, most of France’s appellations are cool climate. In general, these leaner, lower-alcohol and more acidic wines are less fashionable next to big, powerful, full-throttle fruit bombs from warmer places. What a shame! Their charms are many, not least of which is how well they pair with food. Nothing captures this more than the wines from the Loire Valley. This region sits at the northwestern limit of viticulture, and its fine-boned wines are sorely underappreciated. Versatile and charged with acidity, they are your best friends around the dinner table. Light and tangy Muscadet is guaranteed to be no more than 12 percent and is just so easy to gulp with a plate of seafood. Marquis Wine Cellars brings in some delicious Muscadet Sur Lie from Domaine de l’Ecu. Racy Sauvignon Blanc from Sancerre and Pouilly-Fumé as well as Chenin Blanc from Vouvray and Savennières are equally mouth-watering, especially with goat cheese. Vaugondy and Rimbault are good affordable versions of Chenin Blanc. And when it comes to reds, Cabernet Franc is the Loire’s darling. Embrace its pencil shaving, leather and herbal qualities. There is nothing like a Saumur or Chinon to go with your steak tartare. It’s all they serve in French bistros. This is what we call food wine. As new world countries take a page from the old world, we hope these more delicate, restrained wines will be embraced. It’s not about leaving your favourite red behind but rather making new friends. Diversity is a beautiful thing. As the temperature rises, it is the perfect time to explore thirst-quenching wines. If you like to be hip, remember that cool is hot!
It’s not about leaving your favourite red behind but rather making new friends.
EAT MAGAZINE MAY | JUNE 2012
Reds 2009 Chono Chile $19-22 Full of meaty flavours of lic duck sausage sexy side whe
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TASTING NOTES Reds 2009 Chono, Reserva Syrah, Elqui Valley, Chile $19-22* (SKU #854604) Full of meaty and peppery aromas with enticing flavours of licorice and blackberry. Enjoy with duck sausages. Well priced and showing Syrah’s sexy side when planted in a cool climate. 2010 Thierry Germain, Saumur-Champigny AOC, France $20-23 (SKU #616227) 100% Cabernet Franc. Crunchy and gulpable with fresh summer berries and a peppery herbal lift. Pack an impromptu picnic of cheese, paté and a chilled bottle. Steak tartar is the ultimate match. 2009 Nichol Vineyard, Estate Grown Syrah, Naramata, Okanagan Valley $35-39* It may seem bizarre if you’ve baked at 40°C temperatures in the Okanagan but BC is deemed cool climate. The catch is that our season is short. Black cherry, savoury herbs, a hint of pepper and lovely bright acidity. Brilliant with venison. 2010 Bodegas Chacra, ‘Barda’ Pinot Noir, Patagonia, Argentina $40-45* (SKU #136382) Elegant and silky with enticing pure wild
strawberries and wild herbs aromas and flavours. A unique expression of Pinot Noir that works well with chicken, pork, game meat, duck, tuna or salmon. Did we mention it was versatile?
PROUDLY INTRODUCING A GREAT SELECTION OF AWARD WINNING AND ICONIC WINES OF BC The Strath is now the go-to store downtown for wines from the Okanagan and Vancouver Island
Whites 2009 Evans & Tate, Metricup Road, Chardonnay, Margaret River, Australia $20-23 (SKU #379149) Slightly Chablis-like in style though just a kiss of oak. Restrained, textured and balanced with lovely acidity and nectarine and citrus notes. A no-brainer with crab or halibut. 2011 Montes, Limited Series Sauvignon Blanc, Leyda Valley, Chile $21-24* (SKU #76463) From the area of San Antonio. Fresh, bright and clean with exuberant grapefruit flavours and a salty tang. Divine with beet salad or ceviche. 2010 Domaine Vacheron, Sancerre AOC, France $40-45 (SKU #179309) An all-time favourite that makes a regular appearance at our dining table. Juicy citrus and mineral notes with a hint of grass. A match made in heaven with asparagus salad or goat cheese. Bonjour Crotin de Chavignol.
OPEN 7 DAYS 10AM TO 11PM
919 DOUGLAS STREET VICTORIA BC 250.370.9463 WWW.STRATHLIQUOR.COM
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.
Is Your Wine List The Best?
It's Gin Season —
EAT Presents the Taste Wine List Awards 2012... ...to recognize three establishments on Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands that have cultivated a successful wine program that reflects their menu, restaurant size and clientele. As part of the 2012 Taste Wine Festival EAT Magazine is again sponsoring the Wine List Awards. Awards* will be presented on July 19th at the Trade Tasting in three categories: Best Overall Wine Program (for the most exceptional wine list on the islands), Best Showcase of Island Wines (recognizes the list that best showcases the wines of Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands) and Most Diner Friendly Wine Menu (this wine list is approachable and easy for diners to understand). Vancouver Island and Gulf Island restaurants are invited to submit their wine lists which will be judged by a panel of wine experts (Tim Pawsey - wine writer, John Schreiner - wine author and Treve Ring, EAT Magazine DRINK editor and Sommelier). Entries are accepted until May 18, 2012 and should be e-mailed to info@VictoriaTaste.com or mailed to: #1-356 Simcoe Street, Victoria, BC, V8V 1L1. For complete details and entry guidelines go to: www.victoriataste.com/trade-industry or email info@VictoriaTaste.com *Winners will be listed in the next available issue of Eat Magazine with the winner of the Best Overall Wine Program receiving recognition and a feature article prize in the September/October 2012 issue. This article and photography will highlight not only the winning restaurant and its wine program, but also the people who created the award winning wine list and program. A writer and a photographer will visit the winning restaurant for an interview and photo session. EAT is distributed to over 350 Victoria, Vancouver Island, Vancouver mainland and Okanagan locations as well as being read online from Toronto to Seattle.
Long live Victoria's Modern Spirit.
VICTORIA SPIRITS victoriaspirits.com www.eatmagazine.ca MAY | JUNE 2012
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EAT MAGAZINE MAY | JUNE 2012
DESTINATION: PENTICTON Your good-eats-guide
Locals and returning visitors know it for summertime Channel floating, a festival celebrating peaches, and annually collecting the largest grouping of Elvis fans this side of Graceland (okay, that might be a stretch). Sandwiched between lakes Okanagan and Skaha, the city of Penticton is slowly becoming recognized for its diverse culinary fare. From bannock to burgers, the home of the Peach Festival has a few culinary surprises in store. Breaking Fast Nestled along a steep incline, The Bench Market on Vancouver Avenue offers feelgood (and good for you) breakfast. Housemade granola is served with yoghurt and local honey and coffee is from local roaster Backyard Beans. The words “organic” and “artisan” are tossed around like salad. And The Bench Market won the readernominated Exceptional Eats Award for Best Lunch, too. For a slightly more hearty breakfast (sometimes required in wine country), enter the Elite Café. It’s retro-diner-cool, right in the 300 block of Main Street, with lava lamps and an impressive collection of 1970’s wall clocks. A quieter alternative is across the road at the Bellevue Café, with Fair Trade coffee and delicious pastries. Lunch The midday meal doesn’t get much better than Il Vecchio Delicatessen on Robinson Street. Wedge yourself in at the busy counter and order a two-meat sandwich with your choice of cheeses, almost any vegetable you can think of, and grab a pack of real licorice. Pack it to go, or try to grab a seat at one of the few small tables. Over in the 400 block of Main Street, Saint Germain Café & Gallery soothes the soul. Former Vancouver restaurateur Stephano Liapis rocks the menu with simple-yetelegant fare, such as homemade lentil soup, Nicoise salad, or prosciutto and provolone on a baguette. Also worth a taste is garage-turned-burger-joint Burger 55. Tucked just off Main Street on Westminster Avenue East, the people in this small building worship the burger in a serious way. Play vintage Nintendo while you await your custom burger; then, when your order’s ready, share a picnic table and make new friends.
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Unexpected Bites Chip truck eats: Jeffer’s Fryzz, (on the corner of Nanaimo Avenue and Main Street) for the best fries I’ve tasted outside of Ontario - plus they use real cheese curds for poutine. Coffee and live music: Fibonacci’s on Main Street makes a serious chai latte, fun paninis, and other nibbles. Bring on the bannock: the best bannock (a heritage Canadian pan-fried bread) can be found at Hound Dog’s Café (seasonal, on Green Mountain Road at the Channel Parkway). Often, Elvis impersonator “Relvis” can be found serenading anyone within earshot. Urban-esque cool: Wild Scallion on Front Street brings a bit of hip and a lot of awesome to the colourful street that angles itself off the 200 block of Main Street. Gluten-free and vegan friendly dishes, it is self-proclaimed Asian-fusion. Three words to remember: Malaysian potato curry. This joint is reminiscent of Vancouver’s Commercial Drive, circa late 1990’s. Dinner A few of the best spices to be found outside of Vancouver are at Haveli Indian Restaurant in the 500 block of Main Street. They’re a smaller operation, with great attention to detail and big plates done well – and the naan… makes one weak at the knees. On Front Street, Isshin Sushi and Asian Dining does great things with raw fish, rolls, and anything else sushi (don’t let the soda-served-in-a-mason-jar fool you). Theos Greek Restaurant at the top of Main Street has been a Penticton landmark since 1976 and is a long-time local favourite. For one-on-one time with that special someone, Bogner’s of Penticton delivers upscale cuisine and a decent wine list in a refurbished character house, and the chef has his own herb garden right outside. It’s just off Eckhardt Street, with distinct, upside-down yellow doors. And a trip to Penticton wouldn’t be complete without a stop at the award-winning architectural feat that is the Hooded Merganser, with its panoramic view, perched atop the water. The menu and wine list almost play second fiddle to the surroundings, and with floor to ceiling windows, getting a good table isn’t difficult. There’s plenty to eat in Penticton besides peaches (though don’t miss those either – especially when purchased juicy fresh at The Downtown Penticton Farmers’ Market). It seems remiss not to include this open-air market as it has wonderful eats - and will be in full swing by the time this issue hits the street. —By Jeannette Montgomery
www.eatmagazine.ca MAY | JUNE 2012
producer series: Get to
Know Your Fish Harvester — by Rebecca Baugniet
One Fish, Two Fish Two new programs – one national and one local – are making it easier to connect with the people catching your fish.
Elizabeth Nyland A few years ago, EAT editor Gary Hynes set out to track one fish’s journey from ocean to restaurant plate. He teamed up with Finest at Sea owner Bob Fraumeni to follow a rockfish from the frigid waters off the coast of Moresby Island to the cozy dining room table at Brasserie L’Ecole. (You can read the full article online at the Finest at Sea website.) Today, thanks to technology and an innovative tracking program, consumers can find out where the fish they are eating was caught, and who caught it. Thisfish is the name of the Canadian organization that allows consumers to learn more about their food, connecting diners to fish harvesters. The idea behind the program, which launched in 2011, is “to make the seafood business more transparent, and reward those who responsibly harvest and handle your catch.” When I first heard about the program, I must confess it brought to mind the clip from Portlandia, in which a couple at a restaurant badger their server for more and more details about the chicken they are ordering, until finally asking her to hold their table while they go off to visit the farm it came from. However, once I learned more about Thisfish, I was pleased to find that it is much more than a gimmick to appease obsessive customers. The hub for this growing community is Thisfish.info, the website onto which participating fishermen upload the unique codes they assign to each fish they catch, and where consumers can read profiles on individual fishermen and even ask questions. The program is an initiative of Ecotrust Canada and fishing industry partners, and involves fish harvesters from across Canada. It offers a unique forum for coastal fish harvesters to communicate with inland consumers. One visitor, having traced the lobster she bought in September to a catch from June, was able to ask the lobster harvester to explain the length of time from catch to purchase. The Nova Scotia-based captain was interested to learn that his catch had ended up in Ottawa, and responded with a thorough explanation of long-term storage practices for live lobsters.
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EAT MAGAZINE MAY | JUNE 2012
One local fisherman who is enjoying this new forum for meeting his customers is Guy Johnston. In addition to joining Thisfish, Johnston has established Vancouver Island’s first Community Supported Fishery—the Michelle Rose CSF— which he named for his wife and daughter. Johnston, who grew up in Vancouver and was first introduced to the fishing life by one of his high school teachers, says the industry has “transformed dramatically” since he began fishing more than 30 years ago. Johnston explains that as fish farms and overharvesting by commercial boats have increasing pushed out small boat fishermen, it has become a severe challenge to remain economically viable using the traditional sales model. It was Johnston’s friends, John and Katy Ehrlich, who run a successful CSA program at Alderlea Farm in the Cowichan Valley, who suggested he look at a community-supported model. Johnston did a little online research and discovered that there were already several CSFs on the East Coast, and one in Vancouver as well. He calls it “fair trade for fishermen” and was surprised by the response he saw in his first season. He had 65 families sign up – more than double the amount he was hoping for. So how does a community-supported fishery work? The concept is similar to community-supported agriculture box programs. Members purchase a share of the year’s catch before the season begins. In this case, a share is made up of shellfish ($200), a variety of salmon ($50-$200 depending on size and species), or a combination of both (the minimum amount for a share is $150). The catch is frozen at sea at the time of capture, ensuring the highest quality. Members then collect their seafood at assigned pickups at Fisherman’s Wharf in Cowichan Bay – shellfish at the end of June and salmon at the end of August and November. (This year, Johnston is also looking to offer a pickup location in Victoria.) The CSF model allows Johnston, as an independent fisherman, to sell direct to the consumer at a fair market price. Both Johnston’s daughter, Rosalie, and his son, Sebastian, fish with him, leaving at the end of April for six weeks to eight weeks for the spot prawn season at the north end of the Island. Then it’s home for a few weeks before heading further north for pink and sockeye salmon at the end of June. After another brief return, it’s back out for chum salmon. Johnston’s fish and shellfish are all caught using low-impact fishing methods (hook and line for salmon, trap for prawns), in accordance with the Vancouver Aquarium’s Oceanwise program. As he explains it, programs such as Oceanwise and Thisfish do involve a certain time commitment, but the need to fish sustainably is deeply ingrained in small-boat fishermen, who have witnessed first hand the negative effects of fish farms and over-fishing. Johnston is offering an “octopus share” in his CSF this year as well and hopes to expand to include other species such as herring in the future. He credits the Norwegian, Croatian and Greek fishermen he fished with in his early years on the water for exposing him to different culinary perspectives towards the fish we eat. Shares for the Michelle Rose CSF are still available for the 2012 season. Visit www.michellerosecsf.com for more information. Visit Thisfish.info to learn more about tracking the fish you eat.
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chefs talk— compiled by Ceara Lornie What do you think the future is for gourmet/fine dining cuisine in restaurants? Sean Brennan- Brasserie L’Ecole 250.475.6260 One person’s idea of fine dining can be considered a casual eatery by another. The true gourmet places will always have a spot today and tomorrow. The customer will be more aware of spending their dollars on quality, therefore the good will survive and the poor will close. P.S. We are not fine dining. Chris Van Hooydonk- The Sonora Room (Burrowing Owl Estate Winery) 250.498.0620 I think the future of fine dining and gourmet food will be an increase of interaction between the guest, their server, and the culinary team. As guests become more aware of the importance of localvore eating, the story behind the plate is just as important as the food itself. This is to say that the service side of dining will continue to evolve into the story of the food. Peter DeBruyn- The Strathcona Hotel 250.383.7137 I think there will always be a market for gourmet fine dining cuisine for high net worth families. As middle class consumers budget their personal spending more, I believe the casual upscale market will shrink while comfortable casual dining and quick service restaurants will keep expanding.
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Peter Zambri- Zambri’s 250.360.1171 Fine dining will always have a place in the hospitality industry while trends will come and go. Although it is pleasurable to eat a sandwich, or something simple, with a paper napkin standing on the street, there is always room to sit back in a nice environment, enjoy a glass of fermented grape juice and eat an articulately prepared meal. I believe that food comes in many guises and they all complement each other. It’s a shame to think that one facet of ingestible is more important than the other. Jena Stewart- Devour Bistro 250.590.3231 I strongly believe there will be a future for fine dining. It is still an art and we must support the arts! I think as we patronize fine dining restaurants, we should plan to spend a little more than we have in the past. Good food costs money and every year it increases. The future for fine dining will be secure but we will all chose wisely where we spend our money. My idea of a perfect evening is enjoying food at a gorgeous restaurant with friends.
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Chef Roger Sleiman's Quails’ Gate Winery Old Vines Restaurant & Wine Bar 1-800-420-9463 I think “gourmet/fine dining” is being redefined, customers are looking for more comfortable rooms with a more approachable menu. Fine dining seems to be correlated to high prices, but should not always be so. The level of cooking is actually becoming more “gourmet”. We are serving seasonal ingredients at the peak of freshness and sourcing proteins from our region. That’s fine dining! Alex How- Pizzeria Primastrada (Bridge Street) 250.590.4380 Fine dining will always have a place. People want fancy food for special occasions but don't want to pay for it on a regular basis. They want quality, local fast food more often. It keeps me workin'. Laurie Munn- Cafe Brio 250.383.0009 I think that the future of fine dining restaurants is going to shift towards more informal and less traditional service scenarios with the focus being the quality of food and drink. We are already seeing this on a global scale with restaurants like two Michelin star Noma in Copenahagen. They have given up formal table settings and have cooks serve some of the dishes they prepare, and this is considered the best restaurant in the world by some. I think there will always be a place for gourmet/haute cuisine, but I hope the formality hovering over it dies out letting a breath of fresh air in and new ideas take root.
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www.eatmagazine.ca MAY | JUNE 2012
EAT Magazine 16-03 (May/June 2012 Gary Hynes
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Monkey in the Garden A most cultured and cultivated roadside café in rural B.C. —By Ezra Cipes A summer journey to Monkey in the Garden is an annual tradition for my family. After a two-hour drive from Kelowna (three and a half from Vancouver), we arrive before lunch and immediately make ourselves at home in this roadside café 10 minutes south of Spences Bridge on scenic Hwy. 8. Owner-operators Brandie MacArthur and Michael St. Clair Coutts, hereinafter known as the Monkeys, sell almost everything they grow value-added on the plate or preserved. They draw their bounty from lush permaculture veggie gardens and orchards, and from their own chickens and goats. They also trade with other B.C. organic farmers for grains and other goods. On the farm, rows of familiar and unusual crops, including sweet potatoes, Charentais melons and dragon’s claw millet, grow amid volunteer tomatillos, sunflowers, Jerusalem artichokes and clover in productive and healthy lowmaintenance chaos. Some beneficial but invasive plants grow in prominent specimens amid the crops, but these seem to be staying in one place. A field of gorgeous squash and pumpkins sit beneath a plum orchard on a natural plateau. Native plants are all around, even inside the gardens, as are an impressive diversity of pollinators. Nearly every day the Monkeys move a freestanding chicken pen (chicken tractor) near old apple trees. The ground where the pen has just been is freshly weeded and tilled by the chickens and potential pests eaten. The Monkeys sprinkle buckwheat and pea seed into the freshly prepared ground and cover it with a thin layer of mulch. Eggs are collected, the chicken’s water is changed, and the old water given to nearby perennial vegetables. “The chickens became so much healthier when we put them here,” Michael asserts. By the size of the eggs, I believe him. These two young lovers are really genius chefs in the guise of modern hippies, their focus on health and well-being along with pure culinary delight. Beans, nuts and grains are soaked with a little apple cider vinegar overnight to “neutralize the phytic acid and make them more digestible.” The grains used for baking are then drained, rinsed, sprouted, dehydrated and ground into flour. Michael and Brandie have active sourdough buckwheat and rye cultures, a kefir culture, kombucha and even homemade wines and beers. And they are downright creative when it comes to pickling. We savoured lacto-fermented cherries that seemed like the ripest, softest olives from the Mediterranean. Crocks and jars are filled with cucumbers, beans, cabbage and roots, all stewing in bacterial broths. Once they tried pickling sunchokes, grated and pressed in the sunchokes’ own seasoned juice without brine. The high amounts of natural sugar proved explosive, but the surviving jar was delicious. During our recent visit, we ordered the Monkey wraps, prepared on buckwheat sourdough flatbread similar in texture and flavour to Ethiopian injera. The bread was spread with a layer of roasted garlic goat cheese made with kefir culture. It was a tough decision between the goat cheese, the vegan pesto or the homegrown babaganoush. Next, a bed of heirloom tomatoes and flavourful garden greens and herbs, and farm fresh eggs (or the bean of the day for vegans). To drink, we sampled goat milk cappuccinos and Monkey-brewed kombucha—they have various flavours including chai, hibiscus, ginger and Earl Grey. A highlight of the meal was an upside-down cake, which they prepare all spring and summer long with different fruits as they come into season. We were fortunate to be there during peach season. Served with custard sauce (goat milk, sprouted spelt flour, unrefined cane sugar, unrefined organic coconut oil and unrefined sea salt), it was remarkably delicious, something you would expect to taste in a Parisian café and not on the side of a dusty highway between Merritt and Spences Bridge. Monkey in the Garden is a culinary treasure nestled in B.C.’s rural desert, and well worth the adventure to get there. Open for lunch and dinner, Saturdays and Sundays, between the first weekend in May and the last weekend of September. Also catered events, private parties, even a romantic dinner for two. www.monkeyinthegarden.com.
Fresh Seafood Market & delicious eat-in or take-away fish n’ chips. Two great locations to serve you better.
West Kelowna - Governors Market 2231 Louie Drive - 250-768-3474 (FISH) Penticton - Apple Plaza 150-1848 Main St. - 250-492-3474 (FISH) www.buythesea.ca
www.eatmagazine.ca MAY | JUNE 2012
CHEF PROFILE: Bernard Casavant of Wild Apple Restaurant
Jasmin Dosanj When Bernard Casavant joined the culinary world, Canada’s fine-dining establishments were dominated exclusively by European chefs and cuisine. Local and fresh were seen as expensive fads and fine-dining Canadian cuisine? Today, he is recognized as one of the pioneer chefs who received their culinary education and training in Canada, challenged the European-only executive chef status quo, and helped achieve a Canadian culinary identity grounded in dishes inspired by local and regional produce. His greatest culinary influence was his beloved grandmother, Nellie Watts, who as a child taught him to cook, clean, and set the table. Her welcoming philosophy of there is always room at the table, just pull up another chair has been a life-long mantra for Casavant. After the realization that a professional soccer career was unlikely, he chose cooking as his career path and graduated in 1976 from the Culinary Arts Program at Malaspina College with the distinction of “most outstanding student’. He was the first West Coast Canadian trained chef to achieve a chef title at an international hotel fine-dining restaurant, and in 1986 attained the Canadian Certified Chef de Cuisine Certification, the highest possible level for Canadian culinary excellence. Chosen as the executive chef for the Canadian Club for Expo’86, he dazzled foreign dignitaries and celebrities including
—By Claire Sear
Princess Diana, Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, and George Burns with his innovative use of local and regional dishes (revolutionary at the time). In 1991, Chef Bernard had the honor of representing Canada in France’s Bocuse d’Or competition, one of the world’s most serious culinary competitions. Starting in 1989, Casavant helped make Whistler a true culinary destination, first as the executive chef for the newly built Chateau Whistler and later his own restaurant Chef Bernard’s Bistro. A champion of the local food movement, he opened the doors for local produce especially from the Pemberton Valley, created Whistler’s first farmers market, and was a founding member of Farm Folk/City Folk. The perfection in every bite of a fateful pear plucked from a tree while on vacation in the Okanagan with his wife Bonnie and good friends Rod Butters and Audrey Surrao led to his moving to the Okanagan instead of retirement. First as executive chef at Burrowing Owl’s Sonora Room in Oliver and since 2009 at the Wild Apple Restaurant and Lounge in Kelowna. The arrival of chef Bernard Casavant signaled the change in the Okanagan from “peaches and beaches” to a true wine and culinary destination. Amongst all the awards and achievements, Casavant’s true greatness can be seen in the love for both his family and extended culinary family. His influence and mentorship to a younger generation of Canadian chefs cannot be measured. It is a love of the profession and mentoring to a third generation of Canadian chefs that keeps Casavant forever young and in the kitchen. Wild Apple Restaurant and Lounge is a must when in the Okanagan for both wine-inspired cuisine and the opportunity to eat the influence of a Canadian legend. Bernard Casavant helped change the Okanagan from “peaches and beaches” to a true wine and culinary destination. Known in the culinary world, as Chef Bernard, some of the chefs he has mentored and inspired include Michael Noble, Chris Mills, Brody White, Andrew Springet, Jeffrey Jordan, Rachael Kompass, Michael Kompass, Lee Cooper, Trevor Jackson, Tim May, Ray Henry, Greg Hook, Peter Zambri, John Clark, Mel O’Brien. And currently in the Okanagan Chris VanHooydonk (Burrowing Owl), Jeff Van Geest (Miradoro at Tinhorn Creek) Rob Cordonier and Brent Pillon (Hillside Bistro), Jenna Angle (Local Lounge) Rod Butters (RauDZ), Geoffry Couper (Okanagan College of Arts), Robyn Sigurdson and all of the chefs currently at Wild Apple Restaurant.
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EAT MAGAZINE MAY | JUNE 2012