EAT Magazine Nov_Dec 2013_Victoria_48_Layout 1 10/30/13 12:00 PM Page 1
RESTAURANTS | RECIPES | WINES | FOOD | TRAVEL CELEBRATING
15 YEARS OF GOOD FOOD & DRINK 速
Smart. Local. Delicious.
NOVEMBER | DECEMBER
l 2013 | Issue 17-06 | FREE | eatmagazine.ca
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Smart. Local. Delicious.
Concierge Desk . . . . . . . 05 Food Matters . . . . . . . . . .07 left: At Farmer’s Apprentice chef David Gunawan’s food shows off the purity of good ingredients. Pg.18
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Good For You . . . . . . . . .08 Epicure At Large . . . . . . .09 Foraging . . . . . . . . . . . . .10 Get Fresh . . . . . . . . . . . .13 Reporter . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14 Victoria Public Market . .20 Tasted . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .23 Eating Well For Less . . . .24 Local Kitchen . . . . . . . . .26 Giving . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .29 Appetizer Party . . . . . . . .30 VINcabulary . . . . . . . . . .36 Liquid Assets . . . . . . . . . .37 Wine + Terroir . . . . . . . .38 Wine & Food Pairing . . .40 Beer & a Bite . . . . . . . . . .42 News from around BC . .43 What the Pros Know . . . .46
Founder and Editor in Chief Gary Hynes Contributing Editor Carolyn Bateman Vancouver Contributing Editor Julie Pegg DRINK Editor Treve Ring Senior Wine Writer Larry Arnold Okanagan/Whistler Contributing Editor Claire Sear Art Director Gary Hynes Advertising Sales: 250-384-9042 Food Reporters Tofino | Ucluelet: Jen Dart, Vancouver: Anya Levykh, Okanagan-Whistler: Claire Sear, Victoria: Rebecca Baugniet | Cowichan Valley-Up Island: Kirsten Tyler Web Reporters Van Doren Chan, Colin Hynes, Jeannette Montgomery, Courtney Schwegel, Morgan K. Sterns, Jay Whiteley Contributors Larry Arnold, Joseph Blake, Michelle Bouffard, Jennifer Danter, Pam Durkin, Gillie Easdon, Jeremy Ferguson, Colin Hynes, Anya Levykh, Sherri Martin, Elizabeth Monk, Michaela Morris, Simon Nattrass, Elizabeth Nyland, Julie Pegg, Treve Ring, Claire Sear, Dona Sturmanis, Adem Tepedelen, Michael Tourigny, Sylvia Weinstock, Rebecca Wellman.
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Publisher Pacific Island Gourmet | EAT ® 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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Getting Ready For The Holidays For me, the holidays started in September. It always seems a bit bizarre to be putting together the Christmas issue at the start of the fall season, when the leaves are just beginning to turn and the days are still sunny and warm. The last thing I’m thinking about is shortbread cookies with snowflake icing sugar decoration (see pg. 26). But it’s never too early to start planning for all the gifts to buy and foods to be prepared. For me, the best thing about the holiday season is the treats— the hand-crafted chocolates that seem to appear after each meal, the home-made squares my mom sends from Montreal (which I freeze until needed), the dips and slathers I make for noshing, and seeing old friends for a glass of champagne and a bite at a local bar. I enjoy browsing book stores and websites for new cookbooks, ordering the farm-raised turkey from a local butcher, and stocking up my liquor cabinet with exotic bourbons, a smoky single malt, fino, and sumptuous red wines (I’m into Mourvèdre, Grenache,
Cinsault, and Syrah this year). Planning the New Year’s Eve dinner feast is, for me, a big event. While Christmas dinner is all about tradition, New Year’s Eve is about letting loose. I like to try my hand at making a few of the memorable dishes I had throughout the year. This year’s end, you’ll find me in the kitchen, a glass of bubble nearby, in prep mode. I want to try making the Roasted Veal Sweetbreads, Almond Butter, Walla Walla Onion, and Sherry Gastrique dish from Wildebeest in Vancouver; the Salt-Crusted “Wrinkly” Potatoes with Salsa Mojos I enjoyed at Coqueta in San Francisco; and the Wood-Grilled Levain Toast with Warm Chicken Livers, Raisins, and Marsala I had at Ava Gene’s in Portland during Feast Portland. A salute to the year that was, the New Year to come, and all the good things to eat and drink we’ll be having in the year ahead. From all the staff at EAT magazine, we wish you Happy Holidays and a very fine New Year. —Gary Hynes, Editor
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By Rebecca Baugniet
The WEST COAST CHOCOLATE FESTIVAL (COQUITLAM) Ongoing until Nov 10. No ordinary chocolate event, this festival inspires, informs, surprises, entertains and above all, celebrates chocolate. Events can be savoured individually, or experienced successively for the ultimate chocolate experience. Featuring over one hundred individual events over a three-week period, the Festival offers the opportunity to experience the luxury of chocolate. (www.chocolatefestival.ca) EAST KOOTENAY WINE FESTIVAL (COLUMBIA VALLEY) The 12th Annual East Kootenay Wine Festival at Fairmont Hot Springs Resort takes place Saturday, November 2nd. Visit the website for more information. (www.fairmonthotsprings.com) 2013 GOLD MEDAL PLATES CULINARY COMPETITION (VICTORIA) Victoria is proud to officially announce the arrival of Gold Medal Plates to the capital city. Vancouver previously hosted the coveted event, but this year in a stunning coup, Victoria won the rights for the next three years. The event will be held this year on Nov 7 at the Victoria Conference Centre. This celebration of Canadian Excellence in food, wine, entertainment and athletics is held in 11 Canadian cities and has raised over $7.4 million to date for Canada's Olympic athletes. Tickets are available now. (www.goldmedalplates.com) BOOTS N’ SUITS: A MASON STREET FARM-RAISER (VICTORIA) Join the Island Chefs Collaborative and Mason Street City Farm on Nov 9 for an unforgettable evening of food, drink, music, and dancing. Some of Victoria's finest chefs will be preparing a five-course feast, with pairings of local wine, beer or cider. Participating chefs include Peter Zambri (Zambri's), Jamie Cummins and David Johnstone (Relish), Jonathon Pulker (The Refiner Diner) and cocktails by Solomon Siegel (Catalano Cicchetti Bar). Tickets are $85, with proceeds going to the Mason Street Farm. (http://bootsnsuits.eventbrite.com) CORNUCOPIA (WHISTLER) Celebrate the good things in life at Whistler's annual wine and food extravaganza, Nov 717, featuring gala wine tastings, seminars with industry professionals, renowned afterparties and much more. Cornucopia offers something for both the experienced gourmet and those seeking to appreciate the epicurean delights of wine and food. A full schedule of events will be released on the website in October 2013. (www.whistlercornucopia.com) OTTAVIO’S SWISS WEEK (OAK BAY) Celebrate Swiss Week at Ottavio’s Nov 6-10. There will be Swiss cheese samplings all week and discounts on all their Swiss cheeses for the week. Now is the season when the high alpine cheeses really shine, built on the fresh grasses & herbs in the spring & summer fields. Also, perhaps the best grilled cheese ever served for the week in the cafe with housemade ketchup. (www.ottaviovictoria.com) WINEMAKERS DINNER (SAANICH) Muse Winery’s Annual Winemakers Dinner with Deep Cove Chalet Restaurant will take place Nov 16. More details to follow on their website (www.musewinery.ca) Reserve by contacting Muse Winery 250-656-2552. CLAYOQUOT OYSTER FESTIVAL (TOFINO) The Clayoquot Oyster Festival is a memorable celebration of one of the ocean's most coveted culinary delights, the oyster. As a region, Clayoquot Sound is a great cultivator and consumer of this special bivalve, annually growing over 50,000 gallons of oysters a year and over the festival weekend slurping back over 8,000. From Nov 15-16, the community of Tofino in beautiful Clayoquot Sound will go to great lengths to honour the humble oyster. (www.oystergala.com) WINTERBRAU (VICTORIA A seasonal beer tasting and food sampling, featuring beers from 15 local breweries and a sampling of treats from ou the Canoe Brewpub kitchen. 1pm to 5pm. Tickets available at Canoe, Cascadia Quadra, or canoebrewpub.com OCEAN WISE CHOWDER CHOWDOWN 2013 (VANCOUVER) Join Canada’s growing sustainable seafood movement as 12 of Vancouver’s top chefs go head-to-head for the title of 2013 Ocean Wise Chowder Chowdown Champion on Nov 20 at the Vancouver Aquarium. Taste delectable, original, ocean-friendly seafood chowders paired with craft beer, and vote for your favourite, all in support of sustainable seafood. (www.vanaqua.org/chowdown) CONT’D TOP OF THE NEXT PAGE
www.eatmagazine.ca NOVEMBER | DECEMBER 2013
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6TH ANNUAL WEST COAST CHRISTMAS SHOW (ABBOTSFORD) This Nov 22-24, discover hundreds of exhibitors, products, and new holiday gift ideas not found in malls. For a different experience, complete your shopping in one swoop and take a break with a cheese seminar or festival cooking and baking presentations by Food Network Canada's Anna Olson at the West Coast Christmas Show. (www.westcoastchristmasshow.com)
December FRESH AND HEALTHY HOLIDAY COOKING CLASS (VICTORIA) The holidays can be a heavy time for our bodies. Prevention of this is the motivation behind this class on Dec 4 at Cook Culture. Chef Michael Williams (Shaw TV’s “Island Chef”) will focus on some nutritious snacks, sides and entrées that offer a lighter alternative to the usual holiday heavy. After this lesson you will have a repertoire that you can use not only use for Christmas dinner, but also as a go-to for many of the winter months. (www.cookculture.com)
B AC K S TAG E PA S S Stage Wine Bar is proud to introduce our new 5-course tasting menu with wine pairings. You can now enjoy all that Stage has to offer for only $69.95 per person (plus tax). It is the perfect experience if you have a special occasion, staff function, or want to impress your clients. Everything is taken care of in advance so all you need to do is arrive and enjoy an amazing dinner in our beautiful room with expert service.
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GIFTS FROM THE CHRISTMAS KITCHEN (VICTORIA) Give the gift of delicious homemade goodies in this make-it and take-it class at the London Chef. Make a festive spiced pear and cranberry chutney, a layered chocolate chunk cookie mix complete with baking instructions, and irresistible cinnamon and honey candied nuts. Then gather around the table to decorate your goodies with a selection of holiday ribbons and other festive craft supplies. Class costs $95 and is offered December 8 or 15. (www.thelondonchef.com)
January WINTER OKANAGAN WINE FESTIVAL From January 11 to 18, 2014, Sun Peaks Resort and the Okanagan Wine Festivals Society offer those who love wine and winter recreation the most novel of wine festivals. Set amidst the charming pedestrian village, the annual Winter Okanagan Wine Festival is a unique marriage of culinary events, wine tastings, educational seminars, and outdoor recreation showcasing the famous wine varietals of BC's Okanagan Wine Country. (www.thewinefestivals.com) THE EIGHTH ANNUAL OREGON TRUFFLE FESTIVAL The 7th Annual Oregon Truffle Festival will be held in and around Eugene, Oregon over three brisk winter days from January 24-26, 2013. Created to celebrate the magnificent Oregon truffles as they reach the peak of ripeness in their native soil, it is the first festival of its kind in North America, dedicated to sharing the experience of the chefs, foragers and fans of Oregon's wild truffles, from their hidden source in the forest to their glory on the table. (www.oregontrufflefestival.com) HEY BARTENDER & VIP AFTERPARTY EAT Magazine and Smart Events present Hey Bartender, a film about two bartenders trying to achieve their dreams through bartending. Date and details to be annoucced in the next EAT or watch our facebook page (www.facebook.com/EATmagazine)
February GLUTEN-FREE HEALTH AND WELLNESS FESTIVAL (VICTORIA) Events include the Dinner with Dr. William Davis, author of The Wheat Belly at the new Be Love restaurant on Feb 21. Feb 22, the full-day event will be hosted at the Victoria Conference Center. Vendors will share great food, beverages and cosmetics to sample and buy as well as educate and create community awareness around gluten intolerance. (www.glutenfreehealthandwellnessfestival.ca)
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EAT MAGAZINE NOVEMBER | DECEMBER 2013
Exclusive daily features at www.eatmagazine.ca • Cheese of the Month • Feast Portland • Brewery & The Beast • A Decade of Passions Done Right • Eating (really) Local: a Diary of a Place & its People • Chef’s Talk: Favourite BC Apples
The current issue of EAT is available as a online magazine. Click on the cover at www.eatmagazine.ca
EAT Magazine Nov_Dec 2013_Victoria_48_Layout 1 10/30/13 12:00 PM Page 7
FOOD MATTERS By Julie Pegg
One Pot Wonders
WINTER SURVIVAL RELIES ON THE NUMBER ONE COMFORT FOOD There is soup, and then there is Soup. When winter sets in, I want Soup spelled with a capital and a double “S”—a soup-stew that sticks to the ribs and sustains me through weeks that are short on daylight and long on rain. I don’t want my soup from Tetra Pak or tin either. It needs to be made from scratch, simmered slowly with warm aromas that waft about the house. A few of my favourite soups have made the pages of Food Matters, such as beet borscht, fish and corn chowder and French onion soup—that lovely meld of slowcooked onions collapsing sweetly into a beefy broth. I’ll wager I’ve mentioned butternut squash and tomato soups too. I depend on these cozy classics for winter comfort whether at home, or in a bistro or diner on a blustery day. But a clutch of one-pot wonders seldom make the fresh sheet (or today’s cookbooks.) Anglo-Indian mulligatawny, Scotch broth and Portuguese caldo verde get short shrift. And rarely do I see those Italian cousins minestrone and ribbolita offered either. Of the lot, my favourite is mulligatawny. Meaning “pepper water,” its roots may be Indian, but its upbringing is purely British colonial. My take is a concoction of chicken stock and meat from a boiler hen, toasted and ground spices (fenugreek, fennel, coriander and cumin seeds ), carrots, onions, turmeric, celery and apple bulked up with lentils or just cream. Several recipes call for lamb and use rice or potatoes as thickeners. Many omit the apple, which is a shame. The sharp fruit-and-spice note for me defines the dish. Sheila Lukins’s fine recipe from All Around the World (Workman Publishing, 1992) includes apples and can be found on www.eatyourbooks.com. Traditional Scotch broth relies on lamb shoulder, its stock and pearl barley. I like to buy lamb neck when possible and cool and defat the stock before continuing to make the soup. Cabbage, turnips and carrots offer a good earthy note. You can make Scotch broth with beef short ribs but better to substitute chicken for the lamb and leeks for cabbage for another Scottish mainstay, cock-a-leekie. Whichever you choose, accompany with a wedge of English cheddar, a slab of grainy bread and a mug of ale. Caldo verde honours today’s darling super-green—kale—sliced wafer-thin, buttery, lightly mashed potatoes and a simple stock. It has become my go-to winter soup. Made with chili-flecked chorizo, caldo verde is at home with the meat lover. If not using sausage, plop a good handful of chickpeas into the pot along with a dash of smoked paprika, which will give it a little of the same smoky notes of the sausage. Although very tasty the next day, this is one soup I like fresh from the pot when the greens are still vibrant and the sausage (or chickpeas) tender-firm. The potatoes subside softly into the broth. I respect Tuscan ribbolita (meaning reboiled) for its insistence on crusty bread and soupy rich tomatoes. But I love minestrone’s versatility to run with the seasons. You can add peas and leeks in the spring. In summer, it is wonderful made with lots of zucchini, fresh ripe tomatoes and dolloped with a dash of pesto. In winter, bring on the chard or kale—this time cavolo nero and noodles and beans for a sort of pasta fagiole. The addition of a Parmesan rind during cooking adds a further depth of flavour. Toss and simply dress a salad, fetch a bottle of Chianti, and the table is set. These luscious, soul-satisfying soups rely mostly on one knife, one wooden spoon, one pot, one ladle and a whole lot of goodness. They are humble in ingredients, but luxurious in flavour. They are inexpensive to prepare. And they hardly require exact science. What could be more settling on a winter’s night than a loaf of bread, a jug of wine—and hearty homemade soup? E
VICTORIA HOSPITALITY AWARDS Have you recently received exceptional service? Do you consistently see an employee provide exceptional service to their customers? Please take a moment to fill out the online nomination form and recognize these outstanding individuals. Congratulations to Dillon Carfoot of the Fairmont Empress Hotel , the August winner. To nominate someone visit victoriahospitalityawards.com/nominate
www.eatmagazine.ca NOVEMBER | DECEMBER 2013
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GOOD FOR YOU
By Pam Durkin
Dining Out For Diabetes
A FEW SIMPLE GUIDELINES CAN MAKE HOLIDAY DINING A PLEASURE FOR PEOPLE WITH THIS SERIOUS CONDITION.
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EAT MAGAZINE NOVEMBER | DECEMBER 2013
November ushers in a festive season replete with occasions for dining out in restaurants and noshing at holiday parties. It is also Diabetes Awareness Month in Canada, and for the nine million Canadians who suffer from diabetes (this includes pre-diabetes and types 1 and 2), these celebratory meals away from home can be problematic. As Penny Murray, branch coordinator for the Canadian Diabetes Association notes, “choosing healthy options from restaurant menus or Christmas party fare is tricky enough for most of us, but for people with diabetes, who must rigorously monitor their weight and blood sugar levels, the task can be daunting.” Thankfully, there’s good news. By following the suggestions below, diabetics can turn dining out into the worry-free, enjoyable experience it should be—for everyone! If you take medication at regular intervals and have “established” meal times, schedule your reservations so you’ll be dining at your usual hour—not waiting endlessly for the food to arrive. When a late meal is unavoidable, bring along a healthy snack to stabilize your blood sugar and help prevent overeating at the main event. Your best options include a Vitamin C-rich fruit, a handful of almonds or a highfibre/low-sugar snack bar. People with diabetes have a greater risk for developing heart disease than people without the condition—so it’s crucial they limit their intake of both trans and saturated fats. That means avoiding anything on the menu described as creamy, cheesy, au gratin, battered, breaded, crispy, fried, sautéed or buttery. Choose restaurants with a reputation for preparing “local, seasonal” foods. They are apt to utilize healthier cooking techniques and serve smaller portions with plenty of vegetable and whole grain options. Ask for sauces, gravies and dressings to be served “on the side,” and follow through by taking a “light-dipping” approach rather than a “dunk and drown” one! When it comes to salad dressing, the wisest choice is olive-oil- based vinaigrettes. Studies have shown olive oil, and other foods high in mono-unsaturated fats—like almonds and avocados—can help reverse insulin resistance, stabilize blood sugar and lower triglyceride and LDL cholesterol levels—all critical factors in the management of diabetes. When dipping into the breadbasket, opt for coarse whole-grain breads and forego breads and buns made from refined white flour as they can have a deleterious effect on blood sugar levels. The one exception to this rule is white sourdough bread, which is digested slowly and will not wreak havoc with blood glucose. Make vinegar a regular dining companion! Vinegar is a diabetic- friendly condiment—a mere tablespoon added to a salad or other food during a meal can lower post-prandial blood sugar by as much as 30 percent. So if you just can’t resist that fluffy white bun, keep the vinegar bottle handy! Go fish. When it comes to entrees, fish is a super choice. Recent research shows that the omega-3 fats in fish are not only cardio-protective, they also help the body process insulin properly. To optimize these health benefits, have your fish grilled, poached or baked—not fried. When you do order red meat, choose wild game or cuts with the term “loin” in them (sirloin, tenderloin, strip loin). These will be the leanest options. In addition, always ask for skinless poultry or, alternatively, remove the skin yourself when your meal arrives. Opt for fruit-based desserts or “share” a dessert with a dinner companion. Half of something truly delicious is usually all that is required to satisfy a sweet tooth. Keep in mind though that excess sugar causes the body to excrete chromium, an important mineral involved in blood sugar regulation and other endocrine functions. Bypass the Irish coffee and other liquid “desserts-in-disguise” and savour a glass of fine red wine instead. If you are a teetotaller, consider sipping a glass of lemon water throughout your meal—lemon juice, like vinegar, is a powerful blood sugar stabilizer.
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EPICURE AT LARGE
By Jeremy Ferguson
The Uncommon Herb
LOVE IT OR HATE IT, CORIANDER IS ONE OF THE OLDEST AND HEALTHIEST PLANTS ON THE PLANET.
Almost three decades ago, when Canadians were discovering global flavours and food editors competed to pounce on the latest trend (real or imagined), coriander had its day as the exotic siren of the global village kitchen. In a Delhi eatery, over fat shrimps in a gravy roaring with spices, I told my friend Jiggs Kalra, author, restaurateur and shrewd observer of Indian gastro culture, about this. “It’s wildly trendy,” I said. “Food writers in Canada are calling it the taste of the decade.” Jiggs glared at me, then tossed his head back with a whoop of laughter. “Trendy?” he gasped, clinging to the table. “Coriander’s been trendy in Indian cooking for 5,000 years.” “According to our ancient Hindu system of Ayurvedic medicine,” he continued, “it has a load of therapeutic properties, including the prevention of constipation. Today we don’t worry too much about that. We cherish coriander for the lustre it brings to every dish, which is pretty much the lot.” Native to the eastern Mediterranean and Middle East, coriander is both a herb (stems and leaves) and a spice (the seeds). It ranks as one of the oldest and healthiest plants on the planet. The ancient Greeks, Egyptians and Chinese managed to detect aphrodisiac properties in its seed. A slew of cultures have designated it anti-inflammatory, anti-diabetic, anti-bacterial and anti-cholesterol, not to mention anti-boredom. Also known as cilantro (the Spanish word) and Chinese parsley, it offers up a wholly unique flavour, a love-it-or-hate-it proposition (I know Canadians who can’t stand it). It melds the sensations of citrus, mint, a hint of green vegetables and, at the finish, pepper. “Some Westerners describe it as fetid,” Jiggs told me. “But we in the East think it is flowery.” It’s been around, even meriting a mention in the Bible (Book of Exodus). It turns up in 17th-century France as an ingredient in cologne. It’s a staple in falafel in the Middle East. Indian traders likely introduced it to Thailand. I’ve seen Thais walking down the streets of Bangkok and Chiang Mai munching fresh coriander leaves by the handful. When I was a kid several centuries ago, coriander seed was the mysterious heart of the candy called black balls. With the freewheeling cross-pollination of Eastern and Western cuisines and the advent of fusion, coriander emerged as an international star. The Champenoises of France jettisoned dill and began marinating salmon in coriander. In Italy, it found its way into the feathery pasta sauces of cucina nuovo. California went wild with it. Who didn`t? A certain confusion arose with “Vietnamese coriander,” really the herb polygonum or rau ram. Although used almost entirely in Southeast Asia, it originated in the Caribbean, not Vietnam. Nobody seems to agree on what rau ram actually tastes like. Sampling it for the first time on Malaysia’s Islamic east coast, I found it so weirdly soapy, I asked servers to scold their dishwashers. Since then, I’ve learned to appreciate the soapy-peppery herb. It’s easily found in Vancouver’s Vietnamese supermarkets. We grow it in our Saanich garden. West Coast chefs use coriander every which way: it’s omnipresent in the addictively spicy gravies of local Indian restaurants Sizzling Tandoor and India Bistro. Chainrestaurant Earls uses it to marinate the game fish wahoo for its fish tacos. Chef and EAT contributor Heidi Fink treasures it not for its leaves, but for its root, a powerhouse component in pastes, marinades and dipping sauces. Think of coriander as green sunshine: it does much to exorcize the blah of Victoria’s winter. My wife, the serious cook in the house, plays ingeniously. She tosses local mussels with squid ink linguine and coriander sauce. The tomato-coriander coulis she does for roast lamb tenderloin utilizes coriander seed, leaves, stems and sprigs; it’s a dream. Her lime-ginger-coriander ice clears the palate most elegantly. No wonder, when she says I married her for her cooking, I blush, and mightily. E
BRITISH FARE CRAFT BEER LOCALLY SOURCED 1250 Wharf Street, Victoria, BC Call 250.385.3474 Drop in Sun- Thurs 11:00am - 11:00pm Fri- Sat 11:00 am - midnight theguildfreehouse.com
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By Simon Nattrass
IT’S EASIER THAN YOU THINK. CABBAGE + SALT + FRIENDLY BACTERIA = SAUERKRAUT
Winter is coming, and while I relish the thought of warm fires, spiced beers and hearty foods, even the most comforting of winter meals starts to lose its charm after that first month without garden-fresh greens. Thankfully, there’s an easy way to liven up any winter dish: just add a handful of tangy, crunchy sauerkraut from your very own fermentation crock. Author Sandor Ellix Katz is directly responsible for my own love affair with kraut, and his seminal book Wild Fermentation is a perfect starting point for any experiment with home fermentation. Starting with the basics (five pounds of cabbage and 3 tablespoons of salt), Katz encourages the addition of just about anything from other vegetables to fruits, roots and spices. For your first batch, however, you might want to keep things simple. Starting with a non-reactive container—I use a ceramic crock, but a clean plastic bucket works just as well—chop your cabbage as fine or as coarse as you like, sprinkling it periodically with salt (I use kosher salt). While the basic recipe needs no more than these two ingredients, I often include a pinch of mustard powder, black pepper, dill and sometimes juniper to add a bit of complexity to my finished kraut. After your cabbage is chopped and evenly salted, pack it firmly into the crock and place a clean, snugly fitting cover—I use a plate—on top and weigh it down with a clean weight such as a water-filled jug. Cover the whole thing with a cloth to prevent dust from getting in. Press down on the weight every hour or so. After a while, the salt should have drawn enough water out of the cabbage to cover the plate in a few centimetres of brine. If after 24 hours your kraut-to-be isn’t completely submerged, just add some lightly salted water. After a week, taste your
left: Chef Kerry Park from Tre Fantastico. right: Tangy kraut with broiled sardine filets, hearty kale and bacon lardons
starts with Artisan Edibles’ Antipasto For a BC retailer close to you, refer to www.artisanedibles.com
ARTISAN EDIBLES facebook.com/ArtisanEdibles email@example.com 10
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kraut. If it’s not sour enough for you, just try again in a day or two. In the cool winter months, a batch of kraut will keep improving for months, or you can move it to a jar in the fridge when it reaches that perfect flavour. At this point, you’re probably thinking, “Great. But what am I going to do with five pounds of sauerkraut?” For this, we can turn to the classic Alsatian choucroute garnie, consisting of potatoes, cured meats and fresh sauerkraut spiced then baked in white wine and confit. Like any traditional dish, choucroute garnie varies widely between regions and even families, so just explore until you find the right recipe and add your own finishing touches. Local chef Kerry Park from Tre Fantastico gives us his own take on the classic. For years, Park has been making the sauerkraut featured on sausages and sandwiches at Tre Fantastico, and this recipe blends tangy kraut with broiled sardine filets, hearty kale and bacon lardons simmered with thyme, garlic and apple. Of course, no eastern European meal is complete without a seidel of fine ale, and you don’t have to travel far to find the perfect pairing for your kraut-inspired meal. To balance the richness of choucroute garnie, try the clean, floral pilsner from Hoyne Brewing or a Phillips Kolsch, both available year-round. For his recipe, Park recommends Hoyne Devil’s Dream IPA or the Phillips Bottle Rocket ISA, both featuring a heavy hop nose with only mild bitterness. For a beer that will add even greater complexity to these dishes, look for the Off the Grid Red Lager from Hoyne, a curiosity here on the hop-obsessed coast. The sour bite of a well-fermented kraut highlights this lager’s complex malt profile, and the brew adds a layer of earthy sweetness. If you’ve chosen to include apples in your dish, Off the Grid is an absolute must. As you set off on your foray into fermentation, just remember: nothing is set in stone. The only way to find that perfect balance of salt, spice, time and technique is to experiment and, of course, build rapport with all of those microorganisms floating around your kitchen. E Hoyne Brewing Co., 101-2740 Bridge St., Victoria; Phillips Brewing Co., 2010 Government St.; Tre Fantastico, 810 Humboldt St.
Kerry Park’s Sardines and Sauerkraut 2 whole sardines, gutted and deboned 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced Thyme Olive oil Thick-cut (about 1 inch) bacon lardons 1 Tbsp whole grain Dijon mustard 1 apple, cored and diced 454g/1 lb kale, destemmed and cut into large pieces 1 bottle Hoyne Devils Dream IPA Small handful of sauerkraut (100-200g) Salt and pepper Marinate sardine fillets in thyme, olive oil, garlic and salt and pepper for at least 1 hour. Broil in the oven for 6-8 minutes, until done. In a sauté pan, fry up the lardons on medium heat until crispy. Add kale and deglaze with 200 mL beer. Add diced apple, mustard and sauerkraut. Season to taste. Serve with a side of herbed roasted potatoes. Pairings: Hoyne Devil’s Dream IPA or Phillips Bottle Rocket ISA
Kelly’s Kraut Recipe 400 g salt (Tre Fantastico uses Vancouver Island sea salt) 10 L water 6-8 heads green cabbage In a large pot, bring the water to a boil. Add salt to the water and whisk until dissolved. Cut cabbage in half and de-stem/cut out the core. Cut the cabbage as thin as you can without cutting off a finger or two. Place the thinly sliced cabbage in a sterilized bucket. Wait until the water has cooled to room temperature, then add it to the cabbage. Place a clean weight (i.e., a sterilized plate) on top of the mixture and cover with a lid for a least seven days in a cool area to ferment. Ideally under 23°C. Taste the sauerkraut after seven days to check the flavour. The longer you ferment the sauerkraut, the stronger the flavour will be, but the higher the chances of bad bacteria inhabiting the sauerkraut. A note on smell: Kraut smells funky. It's fermented cabbage, so it's going to have a sulfurous, sharp, acidic smell. Bad smells are when it smells rotten, like old compost.
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Open Lunch & Dinner
The whole beast
Tuesday through At 45 Bastion Square
Globally Inspired. Local Flavour.
THANKS FOR YOUR PATRONAGE!
EAT MAGAZINE NOVEMBER | DECEMBER 2013
Camille`s @ 45 Bastion Square Victoria, BC V8W 1J1 www.camillesrestaurant.com
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By Sylvia Weinstock
Pomegranates: Astringent Rubies
CONSIDERED A SACRED FOOD SINCE ANCIENT TIMES, POMEGRANATE SEEDS ARE BURSTING WITH POTENT ANTIOXIDANTS
Pomegranates are one of the most beautiful and unique fruits in the world. No other fruit has ivory chambers holding mounds of faceted, ruby-like seeds. These stunning fruits and their scintillating, astringent seeds have been considered a sacred food and the embodiment of erotic pleasure since the ancient world. They have symbolized fertility, abundance, rejuvenation and immortality for many cultures and religions throughout history. This exceptional fruit is high in potassium and is an excellent source of vitamin C, polyphenols, acids and tannins, which have potent antioxidant actions. The tannin anthocyanin, an antioxidant fruit pigment that makes blueberries blue and pomegranate seeds red, has extraordinary healing properties. The seeds are used medicinally for their cooling, drying and detoxifying astringency in Ayurvedic and Tibetan medicine. To deseed a pomegranate, place it in a large bowl. The juice stains, so protect your clothes and countertop from splatters. Cut a shallow circle out of the crown with a sharp knife, taking care not to slice into the seeds. Pull off the crown. Turn the fruit over, cut a shallow circle out of the bottom and pull it off. Turn the pomegranate over. The seeds will be visible in sections edged by six lines of white pith. Using the lines as a guide, score the rind six times from top to bottom and pull it apart into six sections of uncovered seeds. Loosen the seeds from the pith into an empty bowl. Eat the seeds, sprinkle them as a sparkling garnish on fruit or vegetable salads, chicken or lamb dishes, or juice them. To make pomegranate juice, puree the seeds in a blender, then press the pulp through a mesh strainer into a bowl to extract all the juice. If desired, add sugar to sweeten and water to dilute the juice. Two large pomegranates will yield a cup of juice. Pomegranate juice is one of the highest concentrated sources of antioxidants of any fruit juice. You can also drink the juice directly from the fruit. Release the juice from the seeds by pressing firmly while rolling a ripe pomegranate on a cutting board. Puncture the skin and make a small, deep incision with a knife or coring tool. Insert a straw and sip from the elegant cup. Cosmos, martinis and other delectable cocktails can be made with Pama liqueur, a blend of premium vodka, tequila and pomegranate juice, available in Victoria at five BC liquor stores. Pama can also be used in cooking. These tart-sweet fruits are cultivated throughout Asia, as well as in Spain, Greece, Italy and Iraq, and are widely used in Mediterranean and Middle Eastern cuisines. Most of the pomegranates sold in B.C. are grown in California. Pomegranate molasses is used to flavour spicy Middle Eastern lamb and fish dishes and can also be used to make salad dressings, sauces and marinades. In Persian and Indian cookery, ground anardana (dried pomegranate seeds) is used to add depth of flavour to pastries, breads, chutneys, braising liquids and sauces. A paste of crushed anardana, sumac, cardamom, garlic, ginger and chilies moistened with olive oil is a superb marinade for roasted lamb. Fasenjan—chicken, duck or pheasant simmered in a sauce made of ground walnuts, onions, chicken stock and anardana or pomegranate molasses—is a delicious Iranian dish. Anardana is available at Middle Eastern specialty food stores such as Lakehill Grocery, which also sells Turkish pomegranate juice and pomegranate syrup, a flavouring for refreshing drinks. California-grown pomegranates are available in Victoria from October to the end of December. The early fruits are the size of an orange. Larger pomegranates are more widely available in December. These red beauties will zing the strings of your heart. E Visit www.eatmagazine for Sylvia’s recipe for Mohamara Dip.
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REPORTER Little Jumbo Little Jumbo | 506 Fort St., Victoria | 778-433-5535 littlejumbo.ca
EAT MAGAZINE NOVEMBER | DECEMBER 2013
below: Grilled local octopus with confit fingerling potatoes, grilled chorizo, preserved lemon, smoked paprika.
There’s a new elephant in town, and its presence can’t be ignored. Little Jumbo is the creation of Shawn Soole, a former bartender at Clive’s Classic Lounge in the Chateau Victoria, and the culmination of his 16 years in the industry. That’s right—at just 32 years old, Soole has worked in the restaurant and bar industry for half his life, and his commitment to Little Jumbo is highly evident when you see the striking elephant logo tattooed on his forearm. “This restaurant is not just a whim, not just a flash in the pan,” asserts Soole. “I’m as committed to this as I have been to anything, and when I put my word on something, there is nothing stronger.” The space is a tribute to classic cocktail bars of old, and the pioneering spirit of Victoria. Housed in the circa 1907 Pacific Transfer Building between Wharf and Government, the interior is warm exposed brick and worn wooden pillars. Antique light fixtures are juxtaposed with industrial light bulbs, a library of spirited books and shelves of period glassware have found a new home here, and a wall of black cushioned banquettes and booths beckon. And oh the bar—three hefty pieces of end-grain western maple, assembled on site and handstained with Fernet Branca (a bitter aromatic spirit from Italy) for the perfezione patina. Even the name, Little Jumbo, is a tribute to the Little Jumbo Saloon in New York, founded in 1866 and owned by “the father of American mixology,” Harry Johnson. This Little Jumbo, however, is more than just a bar. The “unpigeonholeable” Soole insisted that this project elevate hospitality beyond cocktails. It’s a restaurant first, overseen by Chef Justin Hardiman, and showcasing local producers every step of the way. Guests are greeted with Silk Road Tea’s Little Jumbo blend, the charcuterie features a rotating selection from Whole Beast, and cheeses are selected by the team at Charelli’s. The small-plates sharing menu includes juicy tender porchetta from Sloping Hills, locally procured vegetables (don’t miss the grilled kale with red wine gastrique) and an ever-evolving salt program curated by NaCl Salt Works. Chef Hardiman and team prep nearly everything on site, from mustard to Porchetta di Testa and Duck Rillette, to Fernet-spiced mixed nuts and house pickles. The beverage program follows suit; Soole focused on producers from the Island and Okanagan first, along with his cherry-picked international selections. The By The Glass wine dispenser and preservation machine rotates, but when I was there included Vancouver sommelier Tom Doughty’s extremely rare 2007 Montagu Cellars 3 Barrel Merlot alongside legendary 2004 Chateau Musar from Bekaa Valley, Lebanon. Glassware is Riedel throughout, and a dozen plus wines by the glass highlight a love affair with boutique producers from B.C.: Clean Slate, Unsworth, Synchromesh, Averill Creek, Orofino, Terravista, Blue Mountain, Little Farm and more were listed when I was in. The printed cocktail list is small (a dozen rotating selections), but the back bar is mighty (250 spirits) and the bar team is able and willing. Soole certainly hasn’t cut any corners; the plan was custom-designed to his exacting specifications and includes liquid nitrogen (ideal in classic gin martinis), the Perlini carbonation system, the cutest 1.5-inch ice globes and an in-bar hydroponic unit for tenderly raising fresh herbs. Though Little Jumbo has been opened just six weeks as of my press deadline, word has spread fast and a no-reservations policy has meant queuing for a seat on busy Friday and Saturday nights. It does and does not feel like Victoria all at once. Everything around you is local, historic and familiar but with the scope and breadth of the space, you could easily be in San Francisco or London. Keep an eye on this Little Jumbo, for it’s not going to be a little secret for long. E BY TREVE RING
lfrom left to right: Tom Ferris, Chef Aaron Lawrence, Dave Craggs.
top left: Interior of Little Jumbo on Fort St. top right: Inventive cocktail: Bubbling bourbon with peach leather bottom left: Duck rillette, grilled bread, housemade grainy mustard bottom right: Owner Shawn Soole
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Wild Thyme Coffee House 109 East Point Road | Saturna Island | 250-539-5589 wildthymecoffeehouse.com
top left: Wild Thyme right: The Saturna Salad bottom: Aleah Johnson on the bus Wild Thyme Coffee House, located on Saturna Island, is far from the clutches of city life but still close enough to easily visit from Victoria, Vancouver or the other gulf islands. Finding Wild Thyme on the island is simple as it’s a stone’s throw from the ferry terminal and stands apart from the other shops and buildings. It is literally inside a double decker bus, one of ten that were built for the Commonwealth Games back in the 60’s.When owner Aleah Johnson (her family has been on Saturna since the 1960’s) got the bus, it was in pretty rough shape. First, towing the bus to Saturna had its own list of problems, most notably the ferry—the bus just barely fit on it. Next, Aleah, with help from most of the Saturna community, went to work fixing the bus; they repaired rusted parts, replaced windows (each one had to be custom made), and installed a kitchen and coffee bar. The upstairs of the bus was converted to seating and has comfortable booths while outside there are patio chairs and tables to sit at in good weather. The menu at Wild Thyme is seasonal and daily. Aleah bakes all the bread used, as well as prepping sandwich ingredients, making fresh soups, baking other goodies and sweets, on top of doing everything else that comes with running a cafe. Many vegetables and herbs are grown around the bus and it’s some of these will likely end up on your plate. Wild Thyme uses as much of the island’s bounty as possible, with a few farms and many smaller “backyard” plots supplying it with produce. When EAT visited Wild Thyme, the menu consisted of a host of summer items. We started with a crostini, made on baguette with local tomatoes. Everything about the crostini was pure heaven—the bread had the perfect amount of crisp, the tomatoes had that “just picked” ripe flavour, all heightened by the balsamic dressing. Next was the Saturna Salad which used as many ingredients from Saturna Island as could fit on the plate. When we were there, the only ingredient from off-island was the cheese. Another notable menu item was the club sandwich. Served on Wild Thyme olive bread, the local lettuce, Hertel’s thick cut bacon, and fresh roasted chicken all came deliciously together with a side of chicken corn chowder. The coffee house offers a variety of drinks, from coffee, lattes, and espressos (made from Yoka’s coffee in Victoria) to teas (Janet’s Special Teas), and juices and sodas. Saturna is the first stop on the gulf island ferry route, and is quite easy to get to from Vancouver Island. Gorgeous scenery and views, great hiking, beaches, and a fabulous spot for lunch—perfect for a short, fun day trip. I’m looking forward to a cool weather hike with the changing season, followed by a warm beverage and the Saturna Island Root Vegetable dish—a favourite, I’m told, in the winter months. Wild Thyme is worth a visit in both the winter and summer months. E BY COLIN HYNES Winter hours: October 1st-May 1st, Monday-Friday 5:45am-2:00, Saturday & Sunday 8-4
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ROMANTIC, CANDLELIT DINING DURING THE HOLIDAYS IS A SEASONAL TREAT. THESE FOUR RESTAURANTS OFFER EVEN MORE THAN A DELICIOUS SEASONAL MENU, THEY OFFER DINING MAGIC.
EAT MAGAZINE NOVEMBER | DECEMBER 2013
As the days get shorter and darker, our need to celebrate the dying light over a good meal with friends and family gets stronger and stronger. The family dinner table takes on a mythic glow, but so do some local restaurants. My favourites offer memorable meals during this magical season in rooms that are romantic, candlelit and look out at spectacular nightscapes. The feasts are cooked by passionate chefs featuring food produced by regional growers and gatherers, vinters, bakers and cheese makers. These four dining rooms keep me returning for special holiday meals. The Dining Room at Butchart Gardens is a local treasure and something of a secret despite the throngs of tourists in summer. Executive chef Travis Hansen leads a team of more than a dozen Red Seal chefs, consistently producing seasonal classics with fresh, locally grown ingredients. The Dining Room also offers the most comprehensive local wine list in the city. “When we re-open for the holiday season, we’ll design our Christmas menu based on our meetings with Saanich Organics,” chef Hansen explained. “We rely heavily on what they can deliver.” Overlooking the Italian Garden with thousands of Christmas lights illuminating the grounds, the former Butchart family home, now the 120-seat Dining Room, “serves more than 500 covers on a busy, summer day,” Hansen explained, citing Oldfield Orchards, Hilary’s Cheese and Lyle Young’s chickens as other local sources he depends upon. “Instead of summer’s 80 percent tourists, our winter season from December 1January 6 hosts 80 percent locals. Many families have been celebrating the season with us for more than 30 years.” You have to pay the Butchart Gardens admission before you eat at The Dining Room, but annual passes are a bargain and the attraction’s hand-carved carousel, outdoor skating rink, costumed carollers and musicians in the stunningly lit garden make Hansen’s special six-course tasting menu a very special, seasonal treat this time of year. The Ultimate Christmas Party, scheduled for November 23 in the Blue Poppy Restaurant, includes dancing to the music of the Chris Millington Band. The annual Christmas light-up is December 1. Camille’s in Bastion Square is another romantic favourite, especially during the holiday season. Manager/proprietor Jamie Williams and chef/proprietor Stephan Drolet offer a charmingly urbane dining experience based on seasonal, local ingredients. The menu changes daily at the cozy bistro, and it’s always inspired. “This time of year I’ll use a lot of chestnuts,” chef Drolet told me. “I use them in bread, as a paste, in soup, with rabbit and duck. I cook a lot of Brussels sprouts too. I just blister them slightly and serve with fresh apples from Madrona Farm and Saanich Organics.” Young chef Brad Holmes and his partner Sahara Tamarin have created another menu drawn from fresh, local offerings at Ulla, the hip, modern room at the foot of Chinatown. Impeccable service, the restaurant’s whole animal butchery program and Holmes’s artistic flair combine to make Ulla a great dining experience, especially in the depths of winter when we really need the brilliance of culinary fireworks. “Brad cooks what is inspiring him,” Tamarin told me. “He cooks the flavours he wants to eat. Less is coming in the door this time of year, but we’ve got winter vegetables from Ragley Farm, and last year Brad cooked an amazing Armenian Christmas fish dish for our customers.” At Vista 18, on the 18th floor of Chateau Victoria, the sparkling view of downtown is always a draw. Live jazz Thursday, Friday and Saturday night helps light up the night sky high above the city, and the local-inspired menu featuring Haida Gwaii halibut, Sooke mountain trout and oysters on the half-shell from Outlandish Oysters brings me back to this holiday-decorated room amid the stars.
Ranchlands organic beef striploin. Potato fondant, beet puree, warm chanterelle salad, parmesan crumb, sweet garlic puree at Camille’s Like my other holiday favourites, Vista 18 offers more than a delicious, seasonal menu from local farms and fishermen. It offers dining magic. BY JOSEPH BLAKE E The Dining Room at Butchart Gardens, 250-652-8222 for reservations Camille’s, 45 Bastion Square, 250-381-3433 Ulla, 509 Fisgard St., 250-590-8795 Vista 18, Chateau Victoria, 740 Burdett Ave. 250-382-9258
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Farmer’s Apprentice 1535 West 6th Ave., Vancouver | 604.620.2070 www.farmersapprentice.ca
Heirloom radishes & beets, with yogurt horseradish snow.
EAT MAGAZINE NOVEMBER | DECEMBER 2013
The simplest things in life are often the most treasured. It’s an old bromide, but, like most homilies, it’s based in truth and can be applied to food. My first visits to Farmer’s Apprentice made me appreciate that statement’s validity, thanks to David Gunawan, co-owner and executive chef. Diners may remember Gunawan fondly from his sojourns at West and Wildebeest, but it’s in his own kitchen that the true essence of his cookery has come to light, and that essence is simplicity. Yes, the focus is on local, sustainable, etc., but that is just the launch point for a menu that sings sweetly about showing off the purity of good ingredients. That focus shouldn’t be viewed as simplistic, however, as Gunawan’s food is anything but. A healthy list of share plates, which changes daily for the most part, is packed with variety, complexity and intriguing notes like the romanesca (from the cauliflower family) that appears on one plate. A lightly poached egg floats in a bowl of brandade over a base of caramelized onions and is topped with toasty pine nuts, greens and black olive bits. For $10, it’s a steal and a delight, and could easily be eaten for breakfast on a daily basis. Grilled octopus ($12) is fork-tender without being mushy, and boasts chorizo and teeny diced potatoes in a vegetable jus of sweet peppers and parsley. Olive oil-poached sablefish ($13) is so buttery and light that it dissipates on contact with the tongue, and fresh Reed Island oysters ($10) are elevated into ambrosia with a sorrel sorbet that is hoovered off the shells in record time. As the name might suggest, the room is minimalist but cozily seats 25. A pitchfork graces one wall, while wooden benches line picnic tables outside the front door, and a comfy banquet faces the open kitchen and bar. Small accents like the flower bowls that double as menu holders keep things from getting too serious, and the music sets an easy vibe that suits the young family eating out front as much as the posh, older couple discussing wines with their server. Casual, comfortable and affordable, Farmer’s Apprentice has brought a delicious and easily digested vibe to South Granville. E BY ANYA LEVYKH
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Good Wolfe 1043 Mainland St., Vancouver | 604.428.1043 www.goodwolfe.ca There is something to be said for a straightforward, slightly homey approach to food. It seems several new restaurants these days have menus based on nothing more complicated than what the chefs-inresidence like to eat on their off-hours. With chef Josh Wolfe’s inaugural stint as co-owner/executive chef at Good Wolfe (along with partner Richard Goodine), one expects to find a delicious and soulsatiating menu—and one is not disappointed. It’s not precisely French, and it’s not wholly comfort food, as items like salmon “shawarma” are not exactly your typical blue-plate special. Taken all together, however, it makes for a solid selection of delicious dishes and innovative cocktails that warm the cockles of your palate. The latter are thanks to Goodine’s relentless quest for cocktails that hit the palate with a parade of flavours that work cohesively, yet still assert their individual characters. Take the Coronation Cup ($10), a new addition tasted on my most recent visit. Coronation grapes, gin and elderflower are the main attractions, creating something both fresh and slightly tart at the same time. Steelhead “pastrami” ($11) is an innovative take on pastrami on rye, here done with lightly cured steelhead, maple mustard, and caraway crackers. Hummus ($7) is better than what I’ve had in Israel, with tahina and zatar in prominent use. Coq au vin ($21) is Cornish hen with crispy golden skin cooked in gewurtz instead of the traditional red, and laid to rest over a bed of baby vegetables, earthy mushrooms and chunks of bacon. The whole comes with an enormous side of the housemade späetzle, pan-fried crispy. Braised beef cheek ($22) is almost feral in its earthiness, while the bed of country risotto it rests on is an interesting contrast in textures between the crisp carrots and creamy rice. As for the room, it’s mainly Yaletown heritage special, with brick wall, poured concrete floor, and a fantastic showcase wall at the back plastered in wine bottles and phonetic spellings of varietals (V-On-Yay, anyone?). It’s also got one of the best bars in the round (or, in this case, square), perfect for regular communal dinners and impromptu speakeasy nights. E BY ANYA LEVYKH
TWO RIVERS SPECIALTY MEATS DIRECT TO CONSUMER PROGRAM
Meating www.tworiversmeats.com www.tworiversmeats.com 60 604.990.5288 4.990.5288 inf info@ o@tw tworiversmeats.com oriversmeats.com
Mamie Taylor’s 251 East Georgia St., Vancouver | 604.620.8818 www.mamietaylors.ca It’s not often you get to go to a restaurant that specializes in making food out of…ingredients. But that is the revolutionary new concept from co-owners Ron Oliver (formerly of Lucy Mae Brown, The Diamond and Blue Water Café) and Simon Kaulback (West, Boneta, Chambar). Throw in the culinary capers of EC Tobias Grignon (Wedgewood Hotel, Senova, Bistro Pastis), and you have a seriously unpretentious, casual and comfortable space in the heart of Chinatown that serves up modern American comfort food with a healthy dose of humour. It’s hard not to laugh at the retro Sears Roebuck target practice papers for beavers, woodchucks and other assorted small animals that cover the walls in one bathroom. Assorted taxidermy throughout the restaurant is less amusing, but somehow in keeping with the overall tongue-in-cheek theme, and seems to be a growing trend in East Side restaurants. And, in case, you were wondering, the owners’ and chef’s bios on the restaurant website are equally quirky (Grignon did not, in fact, grow up on a peyote plantation, and, as of the date of this writing, has yet to offer a single krump dancing lesson). As for the food, it’s just plain good. The tiny Montecristo sandwich ($6) is an inspired blend of smoked veal tongue and cheese on Wonder Bread (really), fried a deep, crispy, golden brown and sided with housemade thousand islands dressing. White cheddar grits ($13) are luscious with grilled mushrooms, fava beans and a warm, runny egg yolk for extra oomph. Rich meatballs in tomato sauce ($6) are stuffed with bacon-wrapped dates. As for mains, comfort staples like fried chicken ($18) get re-done in a brilliant—and less greasy— handling, with an initial sous vide followed by a quick flash in the deep fryer with a coating of wheat flour, rice flour and cornstarch. The result is moist flesh topped with a thin, perfectly crispy skin that offers a very nice crunch, indeed. And, in case you were wondering just who was Mamie Taylor, she was a singer-dancer-actress from the turn of the last century who liked to kick up her heels and had a fantastic drink named after her (it’s on the menu). I enjoyed both it and the Aviation ($10), a gin and violet liqueur concoction with a kiss of citrus. E BY ANYA LEVYKH
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SALT SPRING ISLAND CHEESE COMPANY
THE DAMN FINE CAKE CO.
Take the tour...
ISLAND SPICE TRADE
VICTORIA PUBLIC MARKET FISGARD STREET
COWICHAN BAY SEAFOOD COMPANY
WHISK VICTORIA PIE COMPANY
RAVENSTONE FARM ARTISAN MEATS
FRESH VEG 20
EAT MAGAZINE NOVEMBER | DECEMBER 2013
THE GROCER AT THE HUDSON 600
OLIVE THE SENSES
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EAT’S REBECCA BAUGNIET INVITES
YOU ON A CIRCLE TOUR OF THE
BRAND-NEW VICTORIA PUBLIC MARKET
trolling through the new Victoria Public Market in the first couple of weeks after its mid-September opening was both a feast for the senses and a good exercise for the imagination. The long-awaited Victoria Public Market was still very much a work in progress when I took my circle tour to meet the permanent vendors—those who have opened and those who are coming soon—anchoring the new public market. As you walk in the front doors from Douglas Street, the Salt Spring Island Cheese Company greets you with a generous spread of samples. All their goat cheeses, from chèvres, feta, a few surface-ripened cheeses and a hard cheese, are made at their farm on Salt Spring. A carefully chosen selection of crackers, olives and preserves provide all the components for an elegant cheese board in one spot. www.saltspringcheese.com The empty space beside the cheese shop will soon be filled with cake! Marcene Von Ravenhurst first knew she wanted to open a cake shop after presenting a memorable dessert at an event. “The definitive moment was at a party where I delivered a layered meringue cake with violet cream and blueberries within a halo of spun sugar and edible flowers. Everyone went quiet when it was served.” The Damn Fine Cake Co. was born in 2006 but had been waiting for the right retail space to become available. Von Ravenhurst says that “after meeting with Townline and the Victoria Public Market Society, it was absolute—it found a home and I found a fantastic work environment.” In addition to their selection of cakes, Damn Fine plans to offer daily soup, salad and sandwich options for the lunch crowd, and crêpes served in a stack with cherry preserves “like my Gramma used to make… You’ll need a good coffee to go with those!” (You can get one at 2% Jazz, in the back righthand corner of the Hudson. The entrance is on Fisgard). You will also be able to find the Il Dolce Gelato kiosk sharing space with the cake. damnfinecakeco.ca Next door is Sutra, Vij’s highly anticipated Victoria outlet. Mike Bernardo, chief operating officer and wine director at Vij’s for the past 12 years, is the owner of the new canteen and says it has been an overwhelming experience to be one of the first vendors at the market. “Victoria is such a great food city and we are excited to round out the diversity of the market.” Bernardo’s staff trained in Vij’s Vancouver kitchens and is making the popular pakoras, cassava fries, naan and drinks in-house. You can find Vij’s frozen entrées, as well as his cookbooks and spices, here. Chai caramels from Vancouver’s The Candid Confectioner are also available. facebook.com/VijsSutra Beside Sutra is the Cowichan Bay Seafood Company’s brand-new Victoria shop, selling an impressive selection of local and sustainable (Sea Choice and Oceanwise certified) seafood. Owner Greg Best says, “We had been looking for a Victoria retail space and thought the market’s concept was a good fit for our business. We liked the idea of sharing space with other local farmers and producers.” cowichanbayseafood.com The next vacant spot is destined to become home to Victoria’s newest kitchen shop, Whisk. This is the new venture of Marion Osberg, who has many years’ experience working at Haute Cuisine. With the planned closing of Haute Cuisine, Osberg saw the opportunity to open her own shop, stocking many of the items that were popular there, such as Fiestaware, kitchen gadgets, and Rosti bowls and utensils. Osberg is planning a December 1 opening. A few steps over is the nostalgia-inducing Victoria Pie Company. Founded by Robin Larocque, who discovered her passion for pie-making after a resoundingly successful attempt to make her French-Canadian husband a tourtière, the baker is on a “food rescue” mission—to save beautiful local produce just past its prime. Fruit that would otherwise go to waste gets turned into delicious pie. Hop onto a stool at their CONT’D TOP OF THE NEXT PAGE
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pie counter for a slice with a glass of iced tea, or get a full pie to go. They also do quiche and salad combos at lunchtime. victoriapiecompany.com Up the stairs to your right is the large retail space that has been earmarked for the greengrocer. Townline is building out the space, which will be run by veteran greengrocer Linda Freethy. Freethy worked for Red Barn for many years and has wellestablished connections with local farmers and producers here on VI. Now’s the time to stop at 2% Jazz for a great cup of coffee. Head outside, they’re just around the corner. Wafting across a sitting area is the smell of freshly baked artisan breads and treats at the French Oven. Husband-and-wife team Sandra VanVliet and Nick Castro were completing their first season at the James Bay Farmers Market, and intended to sign on to the market as kiosk vendors, when it was suggested that they might occupy a permanent retail space with seating area. Castro had experience working as a baker in France, so the leap from kiosk to permanent vendor did not seem too daunting. VanVliet manages the retail space while Castro takes care of the baking at their production kitchen a few blocks away from the market. Plans to set up a commercial oven onsite are in the works. Baked goods on offer are firmly rooted in the French baking tradition—expect baguette and sourdough loaves, croissants and pain au chocolats. And if you happen to be in the company of a small child, they will be offered a hand-sized pastry knot, on the house. frenchovenbakery.ca Heading back down the steps, we pass by the entrance to Olive the Senses (open since last September; (see Joseph Blake’s EAT story in the Jan./Feb. 2013 issue), and we arrive in front of the just-announced Ravenstone Farm Artisan Meats. The partners behind the new butcher shop are Trevor Hooper and Grant Smith and his son Logan. The Smiths farm the 23-acre Ravenstone Farm in Qualicum that will supply a good portion of the pork, turkey and lamb that will be on offer in their shop. Hooper (whose name may ring a bell; he was the chef-owner of Vancouver’s Raku) has a nearby farm and will be supplying the chicken. Ravenstone plans to open January 1, 2014. ravenstonefarm.com Neighbouring the butcher shop is Roast, Victoria’s new rotisserie destination. The latest venture of George Szasz (Stage) and Ryan McGregor (Canoe), Roast has garnered a cult following in record time and from a full spectrum of demographics. Watching Szasz attentively slice the porchetta, making sure each portion gets its fair ration of crackling, I overhear a middle-aged woman tell her friend, “It’s just like my mother used to make.” The sight and smell of proper roasts—be it beef, pork, chicken or lamb, do seem to trigger the strongest kind of food nostalgia, and the meat at Roast, served as a sandwich or in a bowl with a side of kale Caesar or traditional roast veg, more than delivers. I suspect they may be unwittingly unleashing a resurgence of the Sunday dinner. In addition to supplying an old-fashioned taste of home to go, Roast is also available to cater events. Tucked in beside Roast sits Victoria’s new Community Kitchen. The site of many chef demos over the market’s opening weekend, the kitchen is VIHA- approved and available for rent around the clock. Fees are on a sliding scale, with the goal of supporting local, food-related non-profits, social enterprises and community initiatives. Just beyond the Community Kitchen is the Island Spice Trade, owned and operated by Vancouver Island Salt Co.’s Andrew Shepherd. In addition to his own infused Canadian sea salts, Shepherd is creating unique spice blends and carrying Organic Fair herbs, chocolates and soda syrups. And what could be more fitting, next door to a spice shop, than an authentic Mexican restaurant? Named La Cocina de Mama Oli for its chef, Mama Oli is Olimpia Cisneros, a native of Guadalajara, Mexico. Tortillas are made on site, and a specialty of Guadalajara—carne en su jugo (meat in its juice)—will be a regular menu item. The last stop on the circle tour is a few steps past the entrance to Smoken Bones. Silk Road, named “Canada’s most beautiful tea store” by Wine Access magazine, sits front and centre at the market. Started by tea master Daniela Cubelic in 1992, Silk Road now has a second location with a selection of their organic teas and teaware. The Victoria Downtown Public Market Society, Townline and the vendors are all doing their part to make this endeavour a success. Now it is up to us, the public, to see that it thrives. E victoriapublicmarket.com 1701 Douglas St., Tues.–Sat. 9:30 a.m.-6:30 p.m., Sun. 9:30 a.m.-5 p.m. Farmers’ Market on Wed., Sat. and Sun. 11 a.m.- 3 p.m.
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TASTED By Joseph Blake
JagaSilk, Japanese treats KNOWN FOR THEIR MACCHA TEA, THIS TINY SPOT ON COURTNEY STREET IS BRANCHING OUT WITH THE ADDITION OF JAPANESE- INSPIRED DESSERTS
pictured: Strawberry Daifuku paired with a bowl of Macca Gryphon tea - a blend of Raven (single cultivar yabukita) and Eagle (single cultivar okumidori) that they make at the bar.
Jared and Miyuki Nyberg are passionate about maccha green tea. The Victoria-based couple started their wholesale business in 2005 and now supply many local outlets, including Discovery Coffee, 2% Jazz, Lifestyle Markets and Red Barn Country Market, with the highest quality maccha. In 2009, the couple opened Jagasilk Tea Bar in Nootka Court. JagaSilk Tea Bar is a cozy little space with a handful of seats at the bar, a table with a couple of chairs, and a couch and table in one corner. Recently, Jared and Miyuki began offering house-made, Japanese-inspired desserts paired with teas from their maccha tasting menu and curated, seasonal, loose tea menu. Last month when I visited Jagasilk Tea Bar, they were serving house-made crème caramel made from Avalon Dairy cream served in a little mason jar with a fresh, ever-bearing, local strawberry on a dollop of whipped cream. The dish was paired with a cup of Mist Valley Nepal, FTGOP. “FTGFOP stands for finest, tippy (leaf-size), golden, flowery, orange pekoe. It’s from an Indian system of quality designation that is also used by tea suppliers in Nepal,” the lanky Nyberg explained as his wife prepared the day’s other dessert offering, a strawberry daifuku served on a beautiful, leaf-shaped ceramic plate. Jagasilk also stocks local potter Harumi Ota’s tea bowls, pottery from Miyuki’s hometown of Gifu, Japan, and various traditional tea utensils, including whisks or chasen, made by one of Japan’s 13 living treasures (craftsmen). The chasen are used to whip the stone-ground, micro-milled, shade-grown, de-stemmed, de-veined maccha—one gram of the green powder to 60 grams of water brought to 70°C in Jagasilk’s exacting procedure. “We originally wanted to create a space to enjoy maccha tea,” Jared continued while leaning over the counter to whip up a bowl of maccha for me. “We’re now pairing several house-made desserts with our teas using local, organic ingredients whenever possible.” Miyuki and Jared paired the strawberry daifuku with macca gryphon, a blend of two, top-grade cultivars grown and processed by one of Jagasilk’s two Japanese growers. “I had my first flavour pairing epiphany while in Japan during a Grade 12 exchange [where he first met Miyuki], and it was an awesome experience. In a successful pairing synergy, 1+1 = 3. Lately, I’ve been working on tea and cheese pairings, and I’ve discovered the Mist Valley Nepal pairs very nicely with Moonstruck’s Stilton.” Speaking together quietly in Japanese behind the bar’s close quarters, the couple produce traditional maccha, loose tea, desserts and organic nut milk made from almond, cashew and brazil nuts. The strawberry daifuku they paired with maccha gryphon is a subtle, mind-blowing experience. At the centre of a glutinous, sweet, white ball of steamed rice flour is a fresh, local strawberry wrapped in a layer of anko, or Japanese azuki bean paste. The combination of textures and sweetness is heightened by the maccha’s smooth and richly herbaceous aromas and flavours. I could almost imagine the verdant, Japanese terroir. “My next goal is to incorporate wild edibles from First Nations groups into our desserts, ingredients like Labrador tea, salal berries and wild cranberries. A class I took at UVic with Nancy Turner intensified my interest in ethnobotany and wildcrafting, but we want to make sure that anything we add to our menu has quality ingredients and reflects our core belief in beauty, balance and ethical business.” E Jagasilk Tea Bar | 633 Courtney St., Nootka Court, Victoria | 250-721-5242 To arrange a class with Jagasilk’s Maccha Academy, call 778-430-5683 or visit the website, www.jagasilk.com.
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EATING WELL FOR LESS
By Elizabeth Monk
Sushi, Turkish Delights and a Seaside Brunch Elizabeth Nyland
far left: Owner Sang Kyu mixing the black rice to show how vinegar causes a colour change and insuring an even distribution of seasoning. near left: Fusion salad roll right: Dynamite roll
Café Mela | 784 Humboldt St., Victoria | 250-383-0288
EAT MAGAZINE NOVEMBER | DECEMBER 2013
left: The Turkish Red Lentil Soup, ground beef and leek borek, Tuzlu kek and feta borek right: Manager Ozge Karahasan drinking a Turkish coffee
“In every restaurant the customer is always right. But I want to change that rule.” These are the words of Green Wasabi owner and chef Sang Kyu. What lies beneath that pronouncement is Sang’s dedication to teaching his customers about Japanese food. To that end, the first thing you see on the menu is two cultural tips: use soy sauce sparingly, if at all; and eat miso soup during the meal, not before it, as it is meant as a palate cleanser. Apparently the miso before the meal pattern is a sop to Western preferences, but not on Sang Kyu’s watch. And I like that. I like to be taught and guided when I’m eating food from another culture. And when the food is this good, I’m fine with being bossed around a bit. The house salad ($7.95) is creative and colourful, with tender squid atop julienned red peppers, cucumbers and lettuce. I got careful instruction about putting all the components together on the fork to best appreciate the salad. The dressing is a lively orange colour, which at first prompted the blasphemous thought, “Huh, Thousand Islands dressing?” But of course it wasn’t. It was, in fact, an elegant blend of Asian pear, grape, apple and kiwi, with a touch of strawberry providing the colour. The parade of colours continued with the purple dynamite roll ($5.95). The rice’s purplish hue came from a mix of black and white rice. This roll is mostly stuffing—prawn tempura, cucumber and avocado—with just a thin layer of rice. A generous layer of sesame overtop gives it a crunch. I also tried the fusion salad roll, which was presented as a special for $8.95 and topped with swirls of three different sauces, one spicy, one honey-garlic mustard and one teriyaki. Rice paper wrappers are packed with lettuce, rice, cucumber, avocado, oishinko (Japanese pickle), crab meat, a choice of one other protein and a bite of pepper. This place will suit the educated eater of Japanese food well, and I will be back to take Chef Sang up on his suggestion of bring parties who are invited to state their spending range and then sit back and trust him to bring out his creations.
Green Wasabi | 1692 Douglas, Victoria 250-590-7902
This little café has changed hands again. Some of you may have enjoyed the sensational Turkish food at Nar Restaurant in Oak Bay. Nar is closing—victims of their own success. They became so popular they needed to scale back. But don’t grieve yet because a little bit of Nar has come to downtown. Ozge, the daughter of Nar’s owners, is bringing a few Turkish favourites to Café Mela while retaining the previous owners’ focus on quality sandwiches. I probably don’t even need to mention that Turkish coffee is now on the menu at Mela. Soups change daily, but I wish you the good karma to arrive on Turkish Red Lentil day. This rich soup has a unique flavour thanks to Turkish pepper paste, which can be bought at Seven Valleys Market. It is garnished with sumac (yes, from the tree) and toasted mint. Delicious. The Tuzlu Kek, which means “savoury cake” and is labelled in the shop as “cheese and dill loaf,” is a great accompaniment to soup. This moist and airy bread is flavoured with both feta and bocconcini, as well as fresh dill and parsley. Other classic Turkish offerings are the bureks—buttery, croissant-like pastries filled with delicious combinations such as leek and beef or spinach and feta. Classic sandwiches are also available: the turkey provolone wrap was jazzed up with just the right amount of cranberry mayonnaise. And sometimes the two worlds merge. The roasted vegetable sandwich is certainly something you see on other menus, but not with Turkish walnut paste as one of the layers. To bring a little bit of Turkey with you, pick up some treats from a basket on your way out: roasted hazelnuts, a fig and walnut mix or a high quality Turkish delight. Sandwiches are $5.75 to $6.75, and bureks are $3.95, making for a lunch both affordable and interesting.
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Sea Glass | 2320 Harbour Rd. at VanIsle Marina, Sidney | 778-351-3663 This review is written with the assistance of Grade 5 apprentice food writer Eva McDonagh Olcen. In a nutshell, Red Seal chef and owner Ron Vincent is able to offer hearty and fun breakfasts and lunches in a casually elegant space overlooking a marina and ocean, at a price point of between $8 and $12. It seems impossible, but clearly he’s making a go of it. A big hit with both me and my apprentice was the Green Eggs and Ham; Eva’s notes sum it up this way: “Very tasty, and it was green.” Wilted spinach on toasted focaccia is then topped with a slice of ham and decidedly green basil-pesto hollandaise, which tasted of fresh, fresh basil. The potato wedges on the side deserve special mention, and happily they show up in several places. The russet potatoes are roasted, then fried in butter and sea salt and dusted in powdered Parmesan. I truly don’t mean anything snide when I say that they taste like cheese Pringles (but are infinitely healthier). Little Qualicum French Toast is another creative dish. I assure you the “little” in the name refers to the cheese company and not the size of the dish. Two massive wedges of French bread are stuffed with Vancouver Island brie, buttered and fried a golden brown. This concoction is then slathered in ginger-blackberry compote, like a crazy reinterpretation of a cheese tray with fruit. If fancy-schmancy brunchy stuff is not to your liking, content yourself with the house burger from the lunch menu. Apprentice Eva’s notes scream out “awesome” in capitals. I’ll be more specific and state that this burger is suitably fat and moist and made even moister by the sweet Mongolian-style barbecue sauce. The addition of smoked bacon is suitably decadent. The Caesar salad has a great balance of salt and tang and garlic. Once again, this is a place for an affordable date. While my focus was on breakfast and lunch, it is open for dinner too. E
left: Little Qualicum French Toast - Portofino bread stuffed with Little Qualicum Brie and served with ginger blackberry compote. right: The house burger served on Portofino pretzel roll with housemade BBQ sauce, bacon and aged cheddar and fries.
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BROWN SUGAR Shortbread Cookies
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MARSHMALLOWS Parisian Hot Chocolate
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The mix of cooler weather and holiday anticipation unleashes the desire
to indulge in luxuriously rich, warm and buttery treats. While these are the foods we crave this time of year, a big part of the pleasure in eating them
Memories of Wintry Bliss
Parisian Sipping Chocolate The French know all about indulgence. They even have the audacity to take the guilt out of a guilty pleasure and just enjoy a rich treat. This was my first introduction to “sipping” chocolate versus “hot chocolate”. Imagine this: Paris café + cold day + great sweater + loved one + velvety chocolate. Now that’s pure bliss! 2 cups whole milk 5-oz bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped 2 to 3 Tbsp local honey Heat milk in a saucepan over medium heat. When warm, gradually whisk in chocolate, a little a time. Be sure to let it melt completely before adding more. Taste and stir in honey if you like it sweeter. Since this is very rich, serve in small cups. Chase it with a glass of bubbly water! Makes 4 to 6 servings Layer in the luxury: Up the flavour ante. Stir in a shot of Grand Marnier, bourbon or brandy. Finish with a sprinkle of sea salt. Cut the richness with a Pink Peppercorn Marshmallow. Or two!
Pink Peppercorn Marshmallows The first time you have a homemade marshmallow marks a rite of passage. The best I’ve ever eaten were made by Gen Laplante (chef at Clay Pigeon). Hers were an exploration of sticky and sweet pillows laced with vanilla. I’ve added in a savoury note to her recipe with mildly spiced pink peppercorns. They're a good foil to the richness of the Parisian Sipping Chocolate. 11/2 cups cold water 2 cups granulated sugar 1 Tbsp light corn syrup
comes from the memories they revive. The joy of eating and drinking comes from the discovery of new flavours and experiences combined with the ones you love.
Recipes and food styling by JENNIFER DANTER Photography by MICHAEL TOURIGNY Art Direction by GARY HYNES
4 pkgs unflavoured gelatin (each pkg is ¼-oz) 1 tsp vanilla extract 2 large egg whites ½ tsp finely ground pink peppercorns Icing sugar, for dusting Crushed pink peppercorns, for dusting Spray an 8 or 9-in. baking pan with oil, then line pan with plastic wrap so edges overhang sides of pan. In a heavy bottomed saucepan, stir ¾ cup water with sugar and corn syrup. Cook over medium heat, stirring just until sugar is dissolved. Bring to a boil, then increase heat to medium-high. Boil without stirring until mixture registers 260F on a candy thermometer (about 6 to 10 min). Set aside. Meanwhile, measure ¾ cup water in a heat-proof bowl and sprinkle gelatin overtop. Set bowl over a saucepan of simmering water (the bowl should fit snuggly over pan but not touch the water). Whisk constantly until gelatin is dissolved. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla. Set aside. While gelatin is softening, using an electric mixer on low speed, beat egg whites until frothy. Add pepper. Increase speed to medium-high and beat until whites until stiff, but not dry, peaks form. Whisk warm gelatin mixture into sugar mixture. Then, with motor running, gradually beat gelatin mixture into egg whites. Continue to beat until mixture is very thick and fluffy, about 12 to 15 min. Spray a spatula with oil, then scrape marshmallow mixture into prepared pan. Spray another piece of plastic with oil, then snug over top of marshmallow. Let stand for 2 to 3 hours. Turn out of pan and discard plastic. Cut into squares (Tip: spray knife blade with oil to prevent sticking). Dust with icing sugar and crushed peppercorns. Makes 16 to 20 squares
EAT MAGAZINE NOVEMBER | DECEMBER 2013
Brown Sugar Shortbread I make these every Christmas. This is my Mom’s recipe and I think it was passed down by her grandmother. All I know is that I love them. The brown sugar adds a subtle caramel note and the texture has a toothsome buttery crunch. Plus they don’t need a lot of decorating (I’m lazy). A snowy dust of icing sugar and you’re done. 2 cups all-purpose flour 1 tsp ground cinnamon (optional) ½ tsp sea salt 1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature ½ vanilla bean, split and seeds scraped ½ cup packed brown sugar Icing sugar, for dusting Sparkly reindeer ornament (optional)! In a small bowl, stir flour with cinnamon and sea salt. In a large bowl, using an electric mixture, beat butter until smooth, then beat in vanilla seeds. Beat in sugar until well mixed. Gradually beat in flour mixture until just mixed. Divide dough into 2 balls; flatten slightly into discs, then wrap and refrigerate for 30 min (or up to 1 week) before rolling. For easy rolling, place a disc between 2 sheets of parchment dusted with flour. Roll out dough to about ¼-inch thickness, then cut into shapes such as stars or rectangles. Place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake in preheated 300F oven until light golden, about 10 to 15 min, depending on size of shapes. Cool, then dust with icing sugar. Serve with a sparkly reindeer ornament! Makes about 2 dozen cookies.
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Good Food, Good Works
QUIETLY AND OUT OF THE LIMELIGHT, FOUR LOCAL FOOD PURVEYORS SHARE THEIR WARES, KNOWING THAT GOOD FOOD HEALS AND CONNECTS. By Gillie Easdon
Food is powerful stuff. It sustains, delights, comforts and inspires us. Here, within these pages, we celebrate food and drink because it is both paramount to a good life and wonderful in and of itself. At this time of year, along with the spike in the eggnog and the social calendar, there is a rise in the needs of many individuals and families in our greater community. Members of the food and beverage industry find ways to connect and support those in need through the universal language of good food. “There are so many that don’t get a special treat. I think they like it. I hope they do.” Autumn Maxwell is Miss Cold Comfort, the diviner of decadent frozen delights. She donates financially but also drops off hand-crafted ice cream creations to Our Place on Pandora Avenue—not-quite-full pints and excess ice cream trimmings. Our Place provides transitional housing, hot meals five days a week, hot showers and a variety of programs to the street community and others in difficulty. “Our Place is an important place. I feel spoiled and lucky to do what I do, and if I can provide something to those people who can’t afford a $6 ice cream sandwich, then I feel I can help a bit.” Scott Renton, GM at Canoe Brewpub, is a marathon runner with a deep commitment to food. “Doing something locally is really important. As a runner, I understand personally what running can do beyond fitness for people,” he explains. So Canoe
innovative island-sourced cuisine TUESDAY – SATURDAY 5:30 – 10:00p.m. 509 fisgard street I victoria bc I 250 590 8795
Brewpub approached Every Step Counts, the Victoria Foundation-initiated walking and running program for people who experience challenges with mental health, addiction, poverty and social isolation. Canoe Brewpub now provides healthy, delicious salads and sandwiches twice a week. Based out of the Victoria Cool Aid Society, Every Step Counts has almost 500 people towards their own success with the cornerstones of fitness, excel lent food and an inclusive community. “We [he and executive chef Gabe Milne] are really excited about this.” “I’m not doing this for publicity,” is one of the first things that Andrew Bissoon of Fat Daddy’s Hattiesburg BBQ quips about his four-years-and-counting weekly participation and donation of pulled pork sandwiches to Street Soccer Victoria, a volunteerrun soccer club for people in transition or homeless. “My commitment to the soccer is professional and personal and has been since the beginning [with local team founder Katie DeRosa].” Andrew is an avid soccer player, soccer dad and soccer coach. He recognizes that sport, teamwork and excellent food are vital for healthy, supported people of all backgrounds and ages. For the past fifteen years, quietly and staunchly privately, The Tapa Bar has hosted a New York steak dinner with beverage, baked potato and all the trimmings for homeless people. “Do you do two seatings or three?” my ignorant, well-meant question meets owner Danno Lee’s deep rolling laugh, “We do about 450 covers. We do it so people can sit down in a nice restaurant and enjoy a nice meal with full service. Everyone deserves that. No cameras in your face, just a good, full service dinner.” All four individuals seemed a bit caught off guard to be asked about their personal commitments to people in transition and on the street. All four articulated their dedication and zeal for their particular cause with a candor and strength that was authentic and inspiring. Beautiful food heals and celebrates all of us. Thank you Autumn, Scott, Gabe, Andrew and Danno, not just for reminding us of the spirit of the season, but for living it.
To learn more about the charities listed, please visit: Our Place, ourplacesociety.com; Every Step Counts, CoolAid.org/esc; Victoria Street Soccer, victoriastreetsoccer.com.
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HOST YOUR OWN APPETIZER NIGHT
EAT MAGAZINE NOVEMBER | DECEMBER 2013
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ANY FRIENDS ASSUME THAT I LOAD MY holiday table with fancy and decorative appetizers, much like the ones they see at banquets and restaurants. I am a chef, after all, and I am known for teaching a cooking class on holiday entertaining! The fact is, I have no desire to stuff a grape and no time to roll out teensy phyllo triangles. My version of the appetizer platter is to make a variety of lip-smacking, stand-alone vegetables— think slow caramelized onions with smoked cheese and fresh herbs, or char-grilled peppers tossed with fruity olive oil over creamy chèvre—and pile them on top of grilled or toasted bread. I use small slices of baguette for fancier parties and thick slices of rustic bread for more casual affairs. Cut the larger bread in half after loading if you want smaller portions. My focus is on vegetables, those unsung heroes of the entree world. Stunningly varied in colour, flavour and texture, well-prepared vegetables add shine and charisma to any holiday assembly. They also provide a welcome rest from the rich pâtés, cheeses and cookies lading most holiday tables. See below for some of my favourite high-flavour vegetable recipes, perfect for use on an appetizer table or as a side dish at any dinner party. However, I do not limit myself to vegetables only. I love to incorporate cured or slow-cooked meats, spiced kebabs, cheeses and various pickles and “smears” to round out my guests’ eating experience. (I’ve created a table to highlight some of my favourite combinations.) At some gatherings, I pre-assemble all the toasts; at others, I allow for a looser mix-andmatch philosophy at the table. Dedicated foodies get a kick out of trying new combinations. Good toast is the perfect vehicle for juicy, spicy, drippingly delicious bits of vegetable and meat. For gluten-free options, try one of the following: Maria’s crackers, toasted bread from a good gluten-free bakery (i.e., Origins), warmed corn tortillas, or slices of grilled vegetables (i.e., red potato, zucchini, eggplant). Most important for a harried holiday entertainer, all the individual components of these appetizers (toasted bread, different toppings, shaved cheese, smears) can be prepared ahead of time and the appies assembled just before serving. They can be served at room temperature or heated for a few minutes in a 350°F oven. The best part about the toast-and-topping version of appy hour? We’re re-inventing the lunch board while we’re at it. No-borders sandwiches! Anything and everything is acceptable: bread or no bread, meat or meatless, juicy or dry, closed or open. The cook can use the various vegetables and meats for lunch the next day, or plan a lunch party to start with. The following table is meant for inspiration only. Please top your toast as written, or use any other combination that suits your fancy. Change up the cheese or protein, use the vegetables by themselves, etc. Most vegetable recipes are included on the next pages:
M AWARD-WINNING COOKING INSTRUCTOR HEIDI FINK ON REINVENTING THE HOLIDAY APPETIZER TABLE
Recipes and story HEIDI FINK Photography REBECCA WELLMAN Art Direction GARY HYNES Editorial Assistant COLIN HYNES Table Design CYNTHIA ANNETT
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Mix + Match
Oven-dried cherry tomatoes
Fennel sausage, garlic butter, sharp cheese
Hot-smoked salmon or smoked tofu, fresh herbs
Braised cabbage with garlic
Gruyère or Tomme D’Or
Chèvre with peppercorns and herbs, garlic oil
Pâté of your choice
Raw sauerkraut or pickled vegetables
Moroccan carrot mash
Mini spiced kofta or kebabs, fresh mint
Shaved ham, prosciutto or smoked turkey
Fruit preserves or chutney (quince, apricot, etc.)
Roasted green beans w garlic/balsamic
Shaved grana podano cheese
Braised Savoy Cabbage with Garlic and Leeks This richly flavoured vegetable dish takes the lowly cabbage to a whole new level. Although this makes a delicious side dish, you can also turn it into a soup or a vegetarian pasta main dish.
RECIPES Note: each recipe makes about 20 servings on small (baguettesized) toasts. The Bread 1 good quality baguette, sliced, OR 1 loaf of rustic bread of your choice, sliced 4 to 6 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
¼ cup unsalted butter 2-3 leeks, washed, white and light green parts sliced thin 4 cloves garlic, minced ¼ tsp red chile flakes (optional) 1 tsp minced fresh sage 1 tsp minced fresh thyme 1 lb Savoy cabbage (about half a cabbage), cut into eighths, cored and shredded 1 tsp salt, plus more, to taste ½ to ¾ cup freshly grated local cheese (optional)
To oven-toast: Preheat oven to 350°F. Brush both sides of each slice of baguette with the oil. Place on a cookie sheet and bake until lightly golden, about 5 to 7 minutes. Make sure the slices are still a bit soft on the inside. Remove to a cooling rack and let cool. To grill: pre-heat gas or charcoal grill to 400°F. Brush both sides of each slice of baguette with the oil. Grill until lightly toasted and grill-marks appear, about 1 minute per side. Remove to a rack to cool. The Toppings Caramelized onions (with something smoked) Oven-dried cherry tomatoes Grilled peppers with herbs and chèvre Caramelized cabbage with leeks and sage Moroccan carrot mash The Proteins Smoked salmon (hot- or cold-smoked) Cold-smoked tuna Fenocchio (cured fennel sausage) Pheasant or rabbit pâté Spicy lamb or beef kebabs Smoked tofu Cheeses, Pickles, Smears Walnut pesto Raw sauerkraut Mayo/mustard Garlic butter Chutney Fruit preserves (quince, apricot, berry) Pickled asparagus or dilled beans Any favourite cheese: creamy blue, Tomme D’Or, Rathtrevor, brie, Gruyère, sharp cheddar, crumbled sheep feta
EAT MAGAZINE NOVEMBER | DECEMBER 2013
Roasted Peppers and Herbed Goat Cheese
Place a large, wide, sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add the butter and melt until foamy. Add the leeks and sauté until softened and translucent. Add the minced garlic, herbs and chile (if using). Sauté for about 30 seconds, until everything is fragrant. Now add the cabbage and salt and stir well. You may need to add the cabbage in two batches. Sauté until the cabbaged is wilted. Add a little water if necessary to prevent sticking, but don’t add any unless you really need to. The cabbage should cook as much as possible in its own juices. Once the cabbage is wilted, reduce the heat to low or medium-low and cover the pan. Let the vegetables stew slowly over low heat until the cabbage is well-cooked and soft, about 15 minutes. Serve immediately, sprinkling each serving with a bit of grated cheese, if you like. *Variations and Serving Options: Substitute Tuscan black kale (also known as Dino kale or Lacinato kale) for the cabbage Omit the leeks and simply sauté the garlic and herbs in the butter before proceeding with the recipe Moroccan Carrot Mash Makes 1-1/2 cups. 1 lb carrots (about 6 large) 4 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil 1 or 2 Tbsp red wine vinegar 1 Tbsp paprika
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2 tsp cumin seeds, toasted and ground 2 cloves garlic, minced ½ tsp salt ½ cup minced fresh parsley Peel and chop the carrot into 1-inch chunks. Toss with 2 tsp of the olive oil and a generous sprinkling of salt. Place in a preheated 425°F oven and roast for 25 minutes, until just tender and getting brown on the edges. Scrape into a pot and add just enough water to cover the carrots. Bring to a boil and cook until the carrots are fully tender and falling apart. Drain and reserve the water. Meanwhile, mix together garlic, paprika, cumin and 2 Tbsp of the parsley. Heat a small pan over medium high heat. Add 2 Tbsp of the olive oil and swirl to coat bottom of pan. Add the spice mixture and fry for a few seconds, until fragrant. Add about ¼ cup of the carrot-cooking water and cook, stirring, until the water mostly evaporates and the oil is floating on the surface. This is how you know the spices are cooked. Put the cooked carrots, the fried spice mixture, the remaining olive oil, 1 Tbsp of red wine vinegar and salt in a mixing bowl and mash well with a fork or potato masher. Alternatively, place everything in the work bowl of a food processor and pulse to combine to a rough puree. Stir in remaining parsley. Taste the mash. It may need more salt and/or vinegar, to taste. Serve either as a hummus-type mixture, in a bowl with warmed pita alongside; or spread onto individual toasts and top with mini lamb kebabs. Or you can scrape into a nice bowl and sprinkle the top with the remaining parsley. Drizzle with olive oil, if desired. Crostini with Caramelized Onion an d Smoked Salmon (or Smoked Tofu) 2 red or yellow onions, halved and sliced thin 4 Tbsp butter ¼ tsp salt 300 g hot-smoked salmon, or 225g Soya Nova smoked tofu Minced dill, fennel greens or parsley Heat a large heavy-bottomed skillet over medium-high heat. Add butter and let melt. Add onions and sauté until softened and translucent, about 5 to 8 minutes. Turn down the heat to medium-low, add the salt and continue cooking until onions are completely soft and golden, with a rich sweet taste, about 20 to 40 minutes longer. Do not rush this! When the onions are ready, add about ¼ cup water to the pan to help deglaze all the yummy brown bits back into the
onions. Stir well and remove from heat. Meanwhile, crumble salmon into medium-large chunks, removing any bones you come across. Mix the salmon gently into the onions. OR, if using the tofu, slice the smoked tofu very thinly into matchstick-sized strips about 2 to 3 cm long. Gently stir these into the onions. When the baked baguette slices are cool, assemble the crostini. Put 1 to 2 Tbsp of filling on each crostino. Sprinkle with minced herbs. Serve. Oven-Dried Cherry Tomatoes 1½ bags or boxes cherry tomatoes (about 500 g) 1 to 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil Salt and pepper to taste Braised Savoy Cabbage with Garlic and Leeks
Preheat oven to 275°F. Cut cherry tomatoes in half and toss with olive oil, salt and pepper. Cover baking sheet with parchment. Place prepared cherry tomatoes on baking sheet, turning each tomato cut side up, and bake for about 45 minutes. Reduce heat to 250°F and cook for 1 hour longer, until each tomato is partly dried out and succulently intense. (Turn the heat down sooner, if needed, to prevent the tomatoes from getting mushy). Top pieces of crostini with a few tomato halves and shave fresh, good quality, firm cheese over the top. Delicious with shaved ham or smoked turkey. Roasted Peppers and Herbed Goat Cheese 1 large red bell pepper (or 2 small) 1 large yellow bell pepper (or 2 small) ¼ tsp salt 1 tsp extra virgin olive oil Cont’d on the next page
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2/3 cup fresh chèvre (about 180 g) 1 Tbsp minced fresh oregano 2 Tbsp minced fresh parsley ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper Roast the peppers. If you have a gas stove: turn one of your burners on high. Place the whole peppers directly on the flame. Let sit for several minutes until charred and blackened on that side. Use tongs to rotate the peppers, and blacken once more. Keep rotating the peppers until blackened on all sides. Remove from the burner and place in a covered container. If you have an electric stove: halve the peppers and remove the stems, seeds and membranes. Flatten them with the back of your hand. Place skin side up on a cookie sheet. Place under your broiler on the highest rack and turn your broiler on max. The skin will take about 15 minutes to blacken. Remove peppers and place in a covered container. In either case, let sit for 15 minutes, then remove as much of the blackened skin as possible. DO NOT RINSE! (If you have used a gas stove, now cut peppers in half and remove stems, seeds and membranes.)
Chop the roasted and peeled peppers into small pieces and place in a bowl. Mix in the salt and olive oil and set aside. In a small bowl, mix together the goat cheese with the herbs and black pepper. To assemble the crostini: spread 2 to 3 tsp of the cheese mixture on each toasted slice of baguette. Top with a spoonful of roasted peppers. Serve. Other Seasonal Topping Ideas: *Caramelized onions, sautéed mushrooms, garlic and shaved cheese *Blue cheese with seasonal fruit preserve (quince, strawberry, apricot) *Cold-smoked tuna, chives, crème fraîche *Fresh tomato, basil, garlic and Natural Pastures mozzarella di bufala *Sautéed leeks, thyme and shaved cheese *Roasted beets with honey-balsamic marinade and blue cheese *Local smoked salmon with chèvre and chopped herbs (fennel, dill, parsley, etc) *Garlic-braised greens with local cheese curds
CREDITS: Shot on location at The London Chef (londonchef.ca). Wine: Laughing Stock Vineyards - Portfolio 2011 (laughingstock.ca). Beer: Moon - Year One Red Wheat (moonunderwater.ca). Cheese: Ottavio - Italian Bakery & Delicatessen (ottaviovictoria.com). Charcuterie: The Whole Beast (thewholebeast.ca) GUESTS: A big thank-you to our “models” for taking time off from their busy workday to join us for the EAT feast. Clay Potter & Chelsea Walker: Moon, moonunderwater.ca; Amber & Jason Binab: Binab Realty Group, binabpropertygroup.com; Erin & Blair Sabiston: Violette Boutique & Emporia, violetteboutique.com emporiaboutique.com
EAT MAGAZINE NOVEMBER | DECEMBER 2013
THE LOCAL LIST
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EAT’s where to find it guide
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DOWNTOWN DUNCAN HUDSON’S ON FIRST Fine dining in a beautifully restored heritage home. Local farm fresh ingredients, classic techniques and modern presentation are just a few reasons Chef Dan Hudson is creating a buzz. Gift Certificates, Private Parties, Lunch Brunch and Dinner. Ph: 250-597-0066, www.HudsonsOnFirst.ca
SALT SPRING ISLAND FERNWOOD CAFE Discover what makes us quintessentially Salt Spring. Meet the owner; perhaps she'll be baking the pastries that fill the cafe menus. Stay for a coffee, grab breakfast or enjoy some lunch. 325 Fernwood Road, Salt Spring Island 250-931-2233 www.fernwoodcafe.com
HASTINGS HOUSE Country House Hotel with elegant accommodations and island ambience, spectacular views, romantic fine dining crafted to perfection, and spa treatments for relaxation and bliss. We are now open all winter and feature affordable packages and seasonal rates. 250-537-2362 www.Hastingshouse.com
SOOKE STICKLEBACK StickleBack was conceived from a love of the West Coast and our incredible natural surroundings. With a natural cedar bar, a life-sized mural of Sombrio beach and rumoured to possess the most stunning patio on lower Vancouver Island. Executive Chef - Justin Shippit, formerly of Royal Roads, Canoe Brew Pub, and Truffles Catering truly works magic in the kitchen. 5449 Sooke Rd Sooke, BC, 778-425-4499 www.sticklebackeatery.com
FORT ST, VICTORIA LITTLE CHEESE SHOP At Little Cheese Shop we are proud to offer many local as well as imported cheeses. We also feature local products to pair with your snacks, platters and gift boxes. 1034 Fort Street, Victoria, BC 250-388-5810 www.thelittlecheeseshop.ca
CHEESE OF THE MONTH
For David Wood, cheese making is much more than a science or even an art, it’s a chance to take part in a tasty tradition. “I love the idea of taking something that has got a long history behind it and participating in that history,” said Wood, president and co-founder of Salt Spring Island Cheese Company. Inspired by classic Spanish Pyrenees mountain cheeses made from the unctuous milk of happily grazing sheep, Wood created Montaña. Literally translating to “mountain” in Spanish, this Basquecountry style cheese is the only firm sheep’s milk cheese made in B.C. Similar to Manchego, Ossau Iraty and Petit Basque, Montaña has a smoothness that sets it apart from the others. To achieve this texture that lies precisely on the line between dry and creamy, Wood added 15% goat’s milk to the mix. “That has allowed us to make the cheese the texture we have been looking for but still with the flavour profile of sheep’s milk,” said Wood. With a milk fat content of about 10%, the richness of sheep’s milk paired with the characteristic silkiness of goat’s milk is a marvelous balance. Montaña is aged a minimum of 6 months, which Woods says is right around the time that the complexities of sheep’s milk really start to emerge. Pleasantly sweet with a full, nutty, brown-buttery finish, it lacks any edge or harshness in its flavour. “People are surprised that a sheep’s milk cheese can taste this mild,” said Wood. Montaña shines shaved into a mixed green salad or perched atop a crostini with tomato and basil. Traditionally the Spanish enjoy cheeses of this style with fresh, young, summer broad beans popped out of their skins, a pairing that Wood is particularly fond of. “It’s a celebration of the season,” he said. Again, Wood emphasizes the value of revisiting tradition and history when it comes to pairings. “There is a good reason they put those things together over the years.” —Courtney Schwegel 285 Reynolds Rd., Salt Spring Island, BC, 250.653.2300 saltspringcheese.com
www.eatmagazine.ca NOVEMBER | DECEMBER 2013 2013
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By Treve Ring
Photo by Gary Hynes
Call it a Capital V for Victory for Viognier. The mighty aristocratic, yet highly hedonistic, white grape of the Northern Rhone has experienced a renaissance of unseen proportions over the last 25 years. When Jancis Robinson penned Vines, Grapes & Wines in 1985, she pegged Viognier plantings at only 32 hectares worldwide, with nearly all coming from the northern Rhone. This low yield, low acid, high alcohol and high colour white grape was entirely unfashionable, not to mention unprofitable, and hard to manage in the vineyard as physiological ripening happens so late in the season. But oh my the aromas: exotic jasmine, violet, musk, peach, apricot and honeysuckle perfume are typical on the nose. The higher alcohol and sugar levels provide a fuller bodied, creamier wine, one imbued with these perfumed, alluring aromatics. These gregarious and expressive traits have made it a welcome blending partner, chiefly with Rhone buddies Roussanne and Marsanne, and also infamously with Syrah. When the pendulum swung (as it always does) and this fragrant, fuller styled wine became popular, plantings skyrocketed around the world, chiefly in Australia (I will always remember The Viognier Monologues thanks to Jane Ferrari at Yalumba), Chile and California. The grape can handle some oak, but too much will quickly mask the perfumed theatrics that Viognier wears so well, and overcropping will turn this lower-acid grape into a flabby, watery soup. This seductive but finicky grape can easily become a winemaker’s worst nightmare, so knowing your producers is of elevated importance. That seductiveness and over-the-top exuberance of most Viogniers mean that it’s love it or leave it for many wine drinkers. Interestingly enough, it’s the same divided opinion for Viognier’s reputed genetic grape relative – Nebbiolo.
Le Vieux Pin
Cabernet Sauvignon, Y Series Viognier 2012
Biciclata Viognier 2012
ORIGIN: Pays d’Oc IGP, Languedoc, France
ORIGIN: Oliver, Okanagan Valley, BC
The Bernard Series handpicked Viognier 2011
ORIGIN: AC Condrieu, Northern Rhone, France
ORIGIN: Colchagua, Chile
THE WALLET: $14-17 ALCOHOL: 13.5% abv TASTE: This wine will transport you back to spring in the south of France. Floral laden hedge, musky spice, acacia blossom and young peach flesh out this smooth, medium bodied wine. A welcome herbed twist of bitter peach pit tempers the garden in your glass.
THE WALLET: *$35-40 ALCOHOL: 12.3% abv TASTE: The complexities in this aromatic wine come both from the blend (78% Viognier, 11% Roussanne, 11% Marsanne) and the concentration of the full, perfumed, sun-primed fruit. Huge acacia, violet and rose aromatics, dried herbs and overripe peach burst from this juicy wine. A lovely toasty spiced orange blossom note closes out the lengthy finish.
ORIGIN: South Australia, Australia THE WALLET: $18-21 ALCOHOL: 14.5% abv TASTE: Yalumba is the preeminent Aussie Viognier producer, and with good reason. Spicy white pepper, jasmine and ginger leap out of the glass, with struck stone, thistle, juicy apricot, peach and lychee notes leading to a juicy citrus finish. The savoury/sweet fruit balance is pitched perfectly in this consistent, go-to Viognier.
ORIGIN: WO Coastal Region, South Africa THE WALLET: $27-32 ALCOHOL: 13.5% abv TASTE: If you are looking for a full-on, full-bodied, no apologies white, here you go. Overripe grapes are fermented and aged in oneyear old French oak, resulting in a vanillan-imbued lush wine with layers of tropical fruit, musk, oak spice and perfumed flowers.
THE WALLET: *$66-70 ALCOHOL: 13% abv TASTE: It’s impossible to understand Viognier without going to the top, all the way to Northern Rhone’s tiny Condrieu AC. Hefty yet agile, with textured layers of complexity that deepen with each swirl. Heavy cream, honey, delicate floral blossom, slate, citrus, apricot, spice and savoury saltiness. Full and creamy palate, with enough mineral-driven acidity to carry through the very lengthy finish.
THE WALLET: $11-13 ALCOHOL: 13.5% abv TASTE: If people want to taste a textbook example of Viognier, I hand them a bottle of this. Peach and ginger scents lead to juicy pear, fragrant apricot and tropical orange blossom on the plump palate. Honeysuckle and a pretty spice note finish off.
*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. Prices may vary.
EAT MAGAZINE NOVEMBER | DECEMBER 2013
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By Larry Arnold
Ployez Jacquemart Extra Quality Brut Champagne NV France $46.00-50.00 If there is a deal to be found in Champagne, Ployez Jacquemart is it. The Extra Quality Brut is a blend of Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier and Chardonnay sourced from Premier and Grand Cru vineyards. Gently creamy with honey, roasted nut and fresh citrus flavours, a refined structure, great balance and a long frothy finish.
ON THIS FARM THERE ARE SOME WINE CHICKS...
Gifts Galore in this BC Wine Store...!
VQA Wine Shop at
Alvear Medium Dry NV Spain $15.50-17.50 Alvear is located in Montilla, next to Jerez, the source of one of Spain’s greatest wines: Sherry! Alvear’s Montilla is very similar and until Brussels decided otherwise the nomenclature was much the same. The Medium Dry is an Amontillado and was until recently, labeled as such. Based on Pedro Ximenez (PX), the wine starts out as a Fino but finishes as a dry Oloroso. It is then slightly sweetened and aged in a Solera system for more than six years. The result is delicious! Deep and complex with toasted nuts and dried fig flavours. Silky smooth with a hint of sweetness but a long, dry finish.
Ca’Montebello Pinot Nero Bianco 2012 Italy $16.00-18.00 Yeow! To say this is an interesting wine is a gross understatement! This bianco is a Pinot Noir (Nero) made with zero skin contact. In wine, colour is extracted from the skin. No skin contact, no colour! On the nose, it starts off like a white, fresh and floral with perhaps a hint of pear. On the palate everything starts to change! It is still bright and fresh but the light floral aromatics evolve into something bigger and juicier; ripe peaches, come to mind. Out of left field but delicious none-the-less!
Open 7 days a week
5325 Cordova Bay Rd. 250-658-3116
www.vqawineshop.ca Our service can best be described as “Knowledgeable, yet not pretentious……approachable, with a hint of sass!”
Masciarelli Trebbiano d’Abruzzo Classico 2011 Italy $17.00-19.00 A small word of advice, if you are looking for good wine at great prices; look where nobody else is looking. You will be amazed at what you might find. Fermented in stainless steel and aged for 9 months before release, this delicious white is a shining example of what Trebbiano can be. Light to medium bodied with simple apple and stone fruit flavours, soft acidity and a clean, dry finish. Not overtly fruit forward but balanced and fresh! Gustave Lorentz Gewurztraminer Reserve 2011 France $28.00-30.00 The Lorentz family has been making wine since 1836. Producing over 150,000 cases of wine a year, they are the largest family-owned wine business in the Alsace. As a commitment to quality, the entire Estate was certified organic in 2012. This lovely Gewurztraminer is complex and rich with seductive aromas of jasmine, passion fruit and spice. On the palate the wine is balanced and full-bodied with a slightly oily texture and supple exotic fruit and spice flavours. Very powerful and lush with a fairly dry finish. Tinhorn Creek Cabernet Franc 2011 Okanagan Valley $22.00-25.00 I am a believer in Okanagan Cabernet Franc and this wine speaks volumes about the potential of this grape in the Province. Tinhorn Creek has a reputation for offering well-made Cabernet Franc at a great price and this wine will not disappoint, as a matter of fact I was elated by the quality of the wine, the cooler vintage conditions notwith-standing. As always the nose is alluring and very forward with enticing raspberry, tobacco and spice notes. Medium-bodied with layers of juicy raspberry, bramble and spice flavours nicely balanced with soft acidity and a silky texture.
The Local General Store 1440 Haultain St Corner of Belmont and Haultain (Haultain Corners) (778) 265-6225 Hours: 9:30-6pm
Check out the many locally-sourced and fair-trade holiday gift ideas in our old world, 21st century general store! www.thelocalgeneralstore.ca
Joseph Drouhin Cote de Beaune Rouge 2010 France $35.00-40.00 Family owned and almost totally organic, the 183-acre Drouhin estate is one of the largest in Burgundy, most of it rated either Premier or Grand Cru. This Cote de Beaune includes a high percentage of declassified Beaune Premier Cru. Aged in oak for 12-15 months, it is dark and earthy with juicy strawberry and bramble flavours. Round and supple with a patina of fine-grained tannins. Stoneleigh Latitude Pinot Noir 2012 New Zealand $24.00-26.00 Stoneleigh Latitude is a range of wines sourced from vineyards located throughout the “Golden Mile,” in Rapaura, Marlborough. Very stylish with layers of spicy black cherry, raspberry and dark chocolate flavours. Great concentration and balance with a silky-smooth palate and soft tannic structure. Desert Hills Gamay 2011 Okanagan $20.00-22.00 Some consider the Gamay of Desert Hills to be among the best produced in British Columbia. If the criterion for quality were pure deliciousness, I would tend to agree. This Gamay is on the masculine side of what is consider by many to be a very feminine wine. It has good deep colour and a robust, perfumed nose with black cherry and cinnamon aromas. There is plenty of richness on the palate but it is still very quaffable and thirst quenching. E
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By Michelle Bouffard and Michaela Morris
Getting Serious with British Columbia Syrah Find the perf perfect ect gift for for ever yone y on your list at giftsimplicitea.com Holiday shopping can be as relaxing, easy & as fun as sipping your fav favourite Silk Road Tea.
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EAT MAGAZINE NOVEMBER | DECEMBER 2013
British Columbia’s wine industry is constantly evolving; an obvious sign of a young wine region in search of an identity. Gaining experience and knowledge about the subtleties of the various winegrowing areas takes time and we’re just starting to make serious progress. The playground has been colourful and it’s been filled with plenty of trials with different grape varieties. Debates continue to rage about which ones are showing the most promise but we are starting to narrow it down. With five different wine regions and new ones emerging, it’s impossible to generalize. Every region has its own unique soil and climate resulting in different grape choices for each. Even within the Okanagan, British Columbia’s main region, the climate varies quite dramatically along its 160 kilometers expanse north to south. The key is to match the appropriate grapes to the specific soil and microclimate in order to produce the best possible wine. Producers are beginning to focus on this rather than simply planting grapes that have a commercial appeal. In the Okanagan, there is one grape that has captured our attention over the last decade. Meet BC Syrah. We fully admit having a weakness for this grape in general and the best examples from the Okanagan really highlight what we love about Syrah. Elegant and seductive, it exudes beautiful smoked-meat, peppery and violet notes while the bright acidity speaks to the climate in BC. The dramatic difference between day and night temperatures keeps the wines refreshing despite their full figure. The warmest sub-regions within the Okanagan are Syrah’s ideal home. Nichol Vineyard was one of the first wineries to champion this grape and they have a fairly long standing success with it. Naramata, where Nichol’s vineyards are located, provides a warm enough climate for Syrah to ripen. But don’t be fooled; it is nowhere near as hot as Australia’s most recognized regions. So the expression remains very much ‘Syrah’ and not ‘Shiraz’ (the moniker associated with big bold reds made an Aussie fashion). Naramata’s examples are more akin to a Northern Rhône Syrah (which you find labeled by the appellations of Crozes-Hermitage, Hermitage, Côte Rotie and Saint-Joseph). This is where the seductive combination of violet, iron and smoked meat notes are particularly evident. Fairly distinct, this style of Syrah really shines at the table. One of our favourite food and wine pairing of the year was a venison roast with the Nichol Syrah. What a match! The gamey notes of the wines blended so well with meat that it was impossible to distinguish one from the other. This is what we call a perfect pairing. Travelling further south, the Syrah gets fuller in style. Whether the grapes come from Oliver or Osoyoos, the wines have a great combination of depth and intensity with bright acidity. They resemble those coming out of Washington. Despite being full and rich, the acidity will remind you that you are in a cooler climate zone. While the Okanagan heats up during the summer days the nights cool off considerably. The growing season in the valley also very short so there is a limited period in which the grapes can ripen. We aren’t the only ones who have recognized the quality of Syrah hailing from the Okanagan. Winemakers and other wine experts haven taken note. We all love it, but it’s not always the easiest grape to work with. The Okanagan’s winters can be brutally chilly and sometime kill the cold-sensitive Syrah vines. Once a vine dies, the vine grower needs to replant and won’t see wine from those vines for at least another three years. This is a huge investment and a gamble that most can’t afford. So although we are seeing fine examples of Syrah, the plantings are not increasing tremendously. So how does BC’s Syrah stack up next to those from the rest of the world? We have participated in a few blind tastings over the last couple of years to put it to the test. What’s encouraging is that each time BC performs better. At a recent BC Wine Institute tasting, Master of Wine Rhys Pender pitted BC Syrah against top examples
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from the RhĂ´ne Valley, South Africa and Australia. The BC contenders earned the most votes for the journalistsâ€™ favourites. We all agreed that they continue improving and we applauded the trend of easing off on the oak in order to let the pure fruit shine. Well-made Syrah naturally has the good genes to age. But as a new region, BC doesnâ€™t have many examples to demonstrate this yet. We are just starting to see how these wines stand the test of time. At a recent Burrowing Owl dinner we were treated to their 2003 vintage. Many will remember this year for the serious forest fires that threatened the vineyards in the Okanagan. We were very curious to taste how this wine had fared. What a pleasant surprise! The wine was just fantastic and had held together extraordinarily well. Beautiful exotic sweet tobacco aromas dominated and complimented the roasted elk loin that accompanied it. This was the crowdâ€™s favourite pairing. After slurping our way through every BC Syrah we can get into our glass, we are confident that this grape has a bright future in our local vineyards. As vineyard techniques continue to improve we hope it will make it easier for Syrah to survive our harsh winters. We never get enough of this seductive grape and itâ€™s always a bonus when we can enjoy one from our own backyard. To steal the Virginia Slimsâ€™ tag-line â€˜Youâ€™ve come a long way, baby!â€™ E
TASTING NOTES Tasting through a sampling of 18 BC Syrahs, we were impressed with the quality across the board. Following are our top picks. Some of the wines will benefit with a bit of air so give them a good swirl when you pour them into your glass. Enjoy! 2012 Black Widow Winery, Syrah RosĂŠ, BC, $22-25* Bright red berry, cherry and raspberry flavours with a touch of sweetness. The comparatively low alcohol (11.5%) and slight spicy notes make it an ideal contender for Indian cuisine. *Note that the grapes for this come from the Naramata bench.
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2009 Prospect Winery, â€˜Red Willowâ€™ Shiraz, Okanagan Valley BC VQA, $16-18 Plump fruit with blackberry and pepper flavours and pleasant meaty notes on the finish. Great value! Perfect for a hamburger kind of night. 2010 Thornhaven Estates, Syrah, Okanagan Valley BC VQA, $25-27* Pleasing violet, vanilla and smoked meat aromas with generous crunchy red currant notes on the palate. Its dry and firm tannins scream for some kind of game meat. Elk? 2011 Backyard Vineyards, Syrah, Okanagan Valley BC VQA, $25-27* A pretty nose with red currant, cherry and fresh cut flowers notes. Simple but well-made and very easy to drink. 2010 Mission Hill Family Estate, Select Lot Collection Syrah, Okanagan Valley BC VQA, $37-40* Dense meaty and chocolate notes with great texture and depth. Full body but fresh on the finish and well balanced. Another impressive Syrah. Enjoy with some delicious sausages. 2011 Moon Curser, Syrah, Okanagan Valley BC VQA, $25-27* Lovely violet aromas. Mouth-filling with generous fruit but lively, crunchy and bright. Finishes with savoury sage notes. Bravo! Duck ahoy! 2010 Poplar Grove, Syrah, Okanagan Valley BC VQA, $35-38* Robust with intense pepper, spice and black currant notes. Lots of tannins and definitely a beefier style. If this is up your alley, just add a steak and youâ€™ll be in heaven. 2011 Le Vieux Pin, â€˜CuvĂŠe Violetteâ€™ Syrah, Okanagan Valley BC VQA, $32-35* This is a stunner and should be held as a reference. Very fragrant and floral with beautiful purity of fruit. Extremely elegant and smooth on the palate with refreshing acidity. Seduction at its finest. Pheasant or squab? *Their regular Syrah is also very good quality. 2010 Nichol Vineyard, Estate Grown Syrah, Naramata, Okanagan Valley $35-40* A more restrained style of Syrah with brilliant acidity that evokes, for a moment, notes of Northern RhĂ´ne, but the hint of wild sage reminds you that you are in the Okanagan. Works like a charm with venison and lamb, especially when served with local cherry compote.
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. Prices may vary.
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WHAT TO DRINK WITH THAT
By Treve Ring
Seafood – both High Street & Street Food.
WE ASK LOCAL WINE EXPERTS BRYAN MAO, DAVID STANSFIELD AND CHRIS TURYK HOW THEY WOULD APPROACH PAIRING DISHES AND FLAVOURS
High Street: T H I S
M O N T H ’ S
E X P E R T S
Bryant Mao (BM) Wine Director, Hawksworth Bryant Mao is the newly appointed Wine Director of Hawksworth, returning to Vancouver from the UK for the position. After working at Brix and George Ultra Lounge in 2006, Bryant was drawn to metropolitan hub of London, England with an eagerness to grow his knowledge and fuel his passion for wine, furthered by his time as sommelier at London’s acclaimed Chez Bruce. Bryant is working towards becoming a Master Sommelier, and is a welcome return to Vancouver’s wine scene. David Stansfield (DS) Corporate Sommelier for Daniel Hospitality Group, and Vancouver Urban Winery David Stansfield is an independent wine contractor – wine nerd for hire – currently working as the Corporate Sommelier for the Daniel Hospitality Group and as the in-house Sommelier for the Vancouver Urban Winery, where he runs the popular Sunday School wine school. He also consults for local East Van restaurants Bestie and Cuchillo. In his 15 year career in wine, David has worked as a cellar hand, tour guide, sales director, online wine entrepreneur and presenter/educator. He’s happy to speak to anyone who will listen about the joys of drinking good wine.
Chris Turyk (CT) Sales Manager, Unsworth Vineyards After graduating from the Culinary Institute of America in Napa, Chris passed the Certified Sommelier exam and the WSET Diploma program. When not driving a tractor or turning compost, you can find Chris harassing bartenders at BC’s favorite eateries! His favorite way to hear a wine described is, “Oh! That’s different.”
Pan-Seared Scallops with Brown Butter, Hazelnuts & White Truffles with Fingerling Potatoes BM. To pair with the natural sweetness of the scallops and the brown butter, an aged white Burgundy will be my first choice. These wines, especially from Meursault, always have a hint of hazelnut to the finish, and the weight of the chardonnay and texture would work well with the brown butter and white truffles. Aged vintage Champagne, blanc de blanc (100% chardonnay) could pair beautifully with this dish as well, due to the finesse from the bubble, the creamy texture, and the acidity will cut through the richness of butter and the sweetness of the pan-seared caramelization. Plus - aged Champagne always has a hint of nutty, gingerbread to the finish, a nice complement. DS. This calls out for aged vintage Champagne. The maturation of the base wine and extended exposure to
Street Food: Fish Tacos with Ling Cod, Lime, Garlic & Cumin BM. For the fish tacos, I will suggest a medium bodied white with fresh acidity or even with hint of sweetness to pair with the dish. Riesling from Rheingau, Rheinhessen in Germany, Australia Riesling from Clare or Eden Valley and Albarino from Rias Baixas, Spain could all work well with the dish. They all have high acidity, so it wouldn’t become overpowered by the lime juice in the dish. *Tip - off-dry German Riesling with a hint of sweetness is the natural pairing for any dish with a bit of heat and spice. All the wines have lovely stone fruit and citrus flavor, working really well with the lingcod. Serve the wine slightly chilled but not ice cold, so the flavour of the wine will come through like a palate cleanser after each bite of the taco. DS. A tall can of Tecate with a slice of lime wedged into it. Does that count? It’s not wine and frankly it’s just
EAT MAGAZINE NOVEMBER | DECEMBER 2013
lees imparts a deep and earthy nuttiness that is picked up in the hazelnuts and white truffle while the wine’s vibrant acidity slices through the richness of seared scallops and brown butter. For my money, Grower Champagne (look for the tell-tale RM in small print on the label) offers great value and a greater sense of place. For hypothetical High Street money, I’m reaching for a Tete de Cuvee – the Head of the Class. Pol Roger’s Cuvee Sir Winston Churchill seems apropos. CT. The budget went out of the window when the fishmonger suggested scallops and ditto with the truffles – no doubt from one of the multitudes of truffle vendors whom seem to crowd our streets these days. For this reason, I have no qualms in recommending a funky, woolly, well-aged Savennieres. Nervy acidity, sense of weight without being heavy, plus complexity of flavour will all add to the dish; the goal is to reveal the wine and dish in new and delicious lights. This small appellation in the Loire valley is the pinnacle of dry chenin blanc production and as a relatively small AOC you can add scarcity to your list of pros.
barely beer, but it’s definitely street. Sometimes you’ve got to roll with context. If your heart’s set on wine, give it something sessionable like Portuguese Vinho Verde. In a glass, the flavours of fresh lime and green apple play nicely with the fish, citrus, and cumin. In a red Dixie cup, the slight fizz makes none of that matter. CT. This new spin on a classic dish requires a classic style of wine with a new world twist, leading me to Oregon Pinot Gris. Oregonian gris doesn’t enjoy the fame that pinot noir does in the state, but can be every bit as characterful and delicious. One can expect a crisp and clean wine, sometimes with small amounts of residual sugar. Medium in body and usually surprisingly complex, Oregon pinot gris is an attractive wine, despite being at modest prices. Ripe apple, peach and grapefruit are part of the typical tasting note, with flamboyant Alsatian floral notes present in wines from grapes grown with ideal slope and exposure. The complex non-fruit flavors and aromas in the wine will compliment the strong and earthy flavors in the tacos. E
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INSIDER INFORMATION The EAT Holiday Gift Guide
Inspired gift ideas for the season Make sushi in seconds... Goodbye mats & sticky rice!
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www.eatmagazine.ca NOVEMBER | DECEMBER 2013 2013
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By Rebecca Baugniet
Cocktail Culture – Recipes & Techniques from Behind the Bar Shawn Soole and Nate Caudle, Touchwood Editions, 2013., $19.95 Just in time for the holiday season comes a new book that will give you the tools you need to take your cocktails to the next level. Co-authored by Victoria’s own Shawn Soole and Nate Caudle (Little Jumbo), Cocktail Culture is a testament to their shared passion for the art of cocktail making, but also to their devotion to Victoria’s cocktail scene. The volume is inherently user-friendly, with sections on all the bartending basics from components and methods to garnishes and glassware. Each cocktail in the recipe section is presented with its difficulty level—recipes range from easy, such as guest bartender Solomon Siegel’s cocktail, The Heartland, made with Plymouth Gin, Amaro Montenegro, pear liqueur, grapefruit bitters and champagne (suitable for firsttimers or cocktail parties); to difficult, such as the Click Your Heels Thrice cocktail, a result of a collaboration between Shawn Soole and Lighthouse Brewing requiring a homemade hibiscus liqueur that will challenge more experienced bartenders. Three appendices offer additional recipes for house-made ingredients like Aperol sugar or Morel Mushroom Infused Bourbon, as well as a list of Vancouver Island suppliers for hard-to-find cocktail components and recommended online sources and blogs. Locals will appreciate the section offering individual profiles of the city’s best bartenders and the guide to the authors’ favourite bars around town. What makes this book a true success is its accessibility. Cocktail Culture is an excellent resource for those already immersed in the scene, but it is equally compelling as an introduction to those who may be a little shy, or intimidated, by this brave new world of cocktails. This book will definitely require restocking your liquor cabinet, but it will also inspire you to try something new and experiment with local ingredients and exotic flavours. Guaranteed, everyone you choose to share your newfound bartending skills with will be impressed. E
May all your spirits be bright.
VICTORIA SPIRITS victoriaspirits.com / @victoriaspirits
A Beer and a Bite
By Colin Hynes
The Beer: Upright Brewing, Seven (Portland, OR) A saison brewed in a form that speaks to old Belgium, but uses new world ingredients and techniques. Hops, malts, and yeasts are from Oregon. Full flavour, earthy, not overly hoppy, refreshingly tart with a bright, dry, and clean finish. 8% ABV, 27 IBU uprightbrewing.com The Conclusion: After each bite of this almost over-the-top sandwich, your palate is refreshed with each cleansing sip. The large mouth feel of the beer compliments the heavier aspects of the sandwich, while the finish of the beer allows the sweetness of the cranberries to come out in full force.
EAT MAGAZINE NOVEMBER | DECEMBER 2013
Best of the season, from our growing family to yours
The Bite: Exaggerated Next-Day Turkey Sandwich The day after any turkey feast means one thing: turkey sandwich with all the fixins. Make sure the sandwich is overflowing with cranberry, stuffing, turkey — really, anything that was on the table the night before. Put it all together in one mega-sandwich— it’ll keep you going throughout the day and bring back all the great memories of the night before.
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WHO’S DOING WHAT IN VICTORIA, VANCOUVER, THE OKANAGAN, TOFINO, THE COWICHAN & NANAIMO
VICTORIA: The holidays are almost upon us again, and if you are planning any large-scale parties, Victoria has some new event spaces worth noting. The Guild’s upstairs renos are now complete and there are three beautiful rooms to choose from. The Belfast Room has a seating capacity of 30-35 people, the Glasgow Room seats 40-45 and the London can accommodate 45-50 guests. Sample catering menus can be viewed on the Guild’s website and functions can be booked through Stacey@theguildfreehouse.com. (theguildfreehouse.com) The Victoria Public Market at the Hudson is also available for event rentals after hours and Mondays, with access to the community kitchen for catering needs. (victoriapublicmarket.com) Still in the rumour department – we’ve heard that Ferris’ has plans to expand their upstairs event space from 40 seats to 100, adding an elevator to become wheelchair accessible as well. Stay tuned. (ferrisoysterbar.com) If you are looking for a great event to attend, check out the Boots N’ Suits Mason Street Farm-Raiser on Nov. 9. This event is a fundraiser for Mason Street City Farm; a 1/4 acre market garden nestled in the heart of downtown Victoria. The farm currently produces over 1 ton of vegetables annually, while running multiple educational programs for Victoria residents. Food will be prepared by Peter Zambri (Zambri's), Jamie Cummins and David Johnstone (Relish), Jonathon Pulker (The Refiner Diner) with cocktails prepared by Solomon Siegel (Catalano Cicchetti Bar), and a dance party following the five-course feast. (bootsnsuits.eventbrite.com)
Cooking with Coconut Oil If the holidays leave you craving healthier recipes, keep an eye out for EAT photographer and Guilty Kitchen blogger Elizabeth Nyland’s new cookbook, Cooking With Coconut Oil: Gluten-Free, Grain-Free Recipes for Good Living. It is already available for pre-order online and will be released in Canada on November 26th. (guiltykitchen.com) If you are seeking some healthier options for eating out, the people behind Café Bliss have opened a new restaurant on Blanshard called be love. “be love is an offering of sustainable organic cuisine to nourish and heal the body, mind and soul. Here we honor our earth community and one another, we mindfully source our ingredients, fostering change to provide a future of health, love and respect for all.” be love will be hosting a dinner with Dr. William Davis (author of Wheat Belly) on Feb 21 2014 as part of the Victoria Gluten-Free Health and Wellness Festival. (beloverestaurant.ca) Also in the ‘expansions’ file, The Village has opened a second location on West Saanich Rd in Royal Oak, serving up the same great breakfast, brunch and lunch selections that have made them so popular in the Estevan village. (thevillagerestaurant.ca) Island-owned Cascadia Liquor has opened a new location – their largest yet - at Uptown. Cascadia Liquor is known for their competitive pricing, extensive range of big brands and specialty products, including locally produced beverages and interesting finds from abroad. Cascadia Liquor is owned and
operated by the Truffles Group, which has been in business in Victoria for more than 20 years. (cascadialiquor.com) In the ‘new openings’ file we’ve got some new Indian restaurants around the capital region to try out. Indyoga, at 1015 Fort St. is the new venture of Surinder Kumar, who has been organizing and cooking Indian feasts for fundraisers for years. (indyoga.ca) Turmeric is the new 130-seat Indian restaurant in the Langford Plaza. Turmeric Indian Cuisine balances flavors with healthy Indian Cuisine using minimal oils, butter and creams. (turmericvictoria.com). We also have a new artisan bakery - Leaven Woodfire Bakery opened at the corner of Quadra and Pandora (tucked in next to Mac’s) in late September. Husband and wife team Mark and Megan Theobald are milling their whole wheat, rye and semolina on site. They provide a handy schedule on their website so you can time your visit for when your favourite baked goods have just come out of the woodfired oven. Leaven also features a daily lunch special, served from 11.30am until they sell out. (leavenbakery.ca) Finally, in the ‘places to get excited about’ file, we’ve got The King’s Deli at 773 Fort St, promising to open late 2013, and Saveur restaurant on Herald St, the new undertaking of Rob Cassels (Flavour Catering), slated to open December 2013. Wishing all our readers a very happy (and tasty) holiday season! —Rebecca Baugniet COWICHAN VALLEY | UP ISLAND: September As you read this Christmas Holidays are looming and with it come numerous opportunities to eat out. In preparation we stopped at the new Bridgeman’s Bistro in Mill Bay. The wonderful building culminates at the picturesque deck hanging over the water with its views of Mt Baker. Through the open glass wall the wood bar is the center of attraction and features a large selection of wines on tap along with Merridale Cider. Not to be outdone Lighthouse, Hoyne and Philips Brewery compliment the upscale menu designed to please everyone. (bridgemans.ca) Daniel Hudson of Duncan’s new Hudson’s on First was a Top Chef Canada finalist and short listed by EnRoute Magazine for the premier position of Best New Restaurant in Canada. I could see why after tasting his perfectly crispy Yarrow Meadows Duck Confit with fig shallot compote and cauliflower pickle. For dessert, a frozen dark chocolate marquise with salted caramel, house-made sponge toffee and candied orange. Hudson’s on First earned my vote that day without a doubt. (hudsonsonfirst.ca) Bill Jones of Deerholme Farm has expanded his seasonal mushroom foraging event this November to include an optional Sunday Mushroom cooking class. After a fun day of exploring and collecting, you’ll make your meal from local products and a heap of wild mushrooms. Visit (deerholme.com) to reserve a place at his table. The dairy products involved in making the custard-based ice cream perfected by Yves Muselle, formerly of Udder Guys Creamery, come from the Comox Valley. When Udder Guys closed their anchor location in Cow Bay it was a sad day for locals and tourists alike. Thankfully Yves opened Morning Mist Ice Cream recently just down the street, where he makes his all natural flavours in-house. If you’ve never been able to enjoy an old fashioned cone before, he’s perfected a gluten free version so don’t wait for summer to sample some! 250-746-4300 On Salt Spring Island, Moby’s Pub in Ganges is under the new ownership of Dale & Susan
WE’RE W E’RE RE REINVENTING IN VENTING THE W WHEEL HEEL
OPEN DAIL DAILYY FROM 10AM TO 6PM 170 UPPER BENCH ROAD SOUTH, PENTICTON T. 250 770 1733 WWW.UPPERBENCH.CA www.eatmagazine.ca NOVEMBER | DECEMBER 2013
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The Buzz Schweighardt from Whistler and they have lots of exciting plans, not the least of which is providing good local food to visitors and Islanders alike. (mobyspub.ca) This summer also saw the opening of the new restaurant The Gathering in Grace Point Square, formerly occupied by Bruce’s Kitchen. Chef Jonny Duquette settled on Salt Spring after 25 years cooking for the likes of Bill Clinton and Mikhael Gorbechev. His flair lies in presenting soul food, tapas style at prices that won’t break the bank. (facebook.com/thegatheringSSI) Heading further up island the annual Kris Kringle Fair has found a new home at Beban Park Social Center in Nanaimo. It’s a much larger facility so expect more of your local favorites: decadent fudge, delectable truffles, savoury salsas, tasty jams, aromatic coffee, balsamic vinegar, and artisan cheeses to serve your holiday guests. Island Soda Works’ winter flavours flow at the Union Street Grill in Courtney. A 40 calorie glass of the vibrant tangerine-coloured Tumeric & Ginger besides being delicious is good for digestion, joint pain, and the cold and flu bugs we hope to fend off this season. Or try a tangy glass of Salted Gravenstien Apple: the apples come from Celium Acres, and local sea salt from Clever Crow. (facebook.com/islandsodaworks), (unionstreetgrill.ca) As of September, Comox is the proud new home of the Japanese restaurant Sushi Wara located in the long empty Port Augusta Hotel building. Chef and owner Young Shin along with his renowned sushi master father Lee Kwang Chool, relocated to Comox from Vancouver because they wanted a beautiful place for their family to live. Young had to talk his father into presenting his traditionally made fresh, flavourful, sushi in the ‘fancy’ western way he learned at George Brown Culinary College. As soon as we sat down we were presented with a complementary noodle ball in a steaming bowl of miso soup. Right then it was apparent that Young will leave his mark on Comox. ‘ Wara’ is Korean, and it means ‘come here’ translating to mean ‘come to our restaurant’ which you will definitely want to do again and again! 250890-9098 —Kirsten Tyler TOFINO: It’s definitely that time of year again when high winds and rain start to hit the west coast of the Island and we start to think of hunkering down. It’s always a great time for staying in and cooking and potluck dinners. Luckily, there are also some great events to get us out of the house on rainy nights. If you’ve never experienced the Clayoquot Oyster Festival in Tofino, it should be on your list this fall. Held every November and this year from Nov. 15-17, the festival is a series of events celebrating the bivalves of Clayoquot Sound and Vancouver Island, and a really fun local shindig (with a tagline like ‘Keeping Tofino’s population growing since 1997’ how could it not be?). The Mermaid’s Masquerade takes place on Friday, Nov. 15. This is like Halloween all over again in Tofino, with under the sea themed costumes and plenty of oysters. With live music and prizes for the best getups, this event is a favourite. The classy Oyster Gala is set for Saturday, Nov. 16. Featuring the Best Oyster Dish competition, live music, and
BC wine, beer and cider, this is the main event of the weekend. New this year is a ticket option for both events for $99. For more information about events, tickets and accommodation options, please visit (oystergala.com). The food options in Ucluelet just keep getting better and better. New at the end of July, Ukee Juice is a smoothie/juice bar and live raw food restaurant located on the main drag. Owners Ashleigh Drummond and Darren Terhune are both interested in healthy eating (Ashleigh is a recent graduate of the Canadian School of Natural Nutrition), and wanted to provide a homegrown, whole food option for the local, active crowd. With a focus on handmade, organic and local products, Ashleigh and Darren cater to all culinary types, including vegan and vegetarian. In addition to fresh juices and smoothies, they make salads, soups, snacks, sandwiches, poke bowls, and awesome baked goods like Rawkies (raw energy cookies), quinoa brownies and cashew raspberry cheesecake. Keeping in mind their footprint, Ukee Juice also practices composting, recycling and uses eco-friendly containers. 1627A Peninsula Rd., (ukeejuice.com). There are two to three new restaurants in the works in Tofino at the moment, though by press time none were ready to share much pre-opening news. The new Jamie’s Rainforest Inn (formerly the Clayoquot Orca Lodge) is opening a restaurant on the premises that will serve breakfast, lunch and dinner, as well as a tapas and lounge menu. This property is affiliated with the Jamie’s Whaling and Adventure centres located in Tofino and Ucluelet. Eventually they hope to add special events like weddings and banquets. Stay tuned for more news about this and other new additions to the Tofino culinary scene. (tofinorainforestinn.com) Black Rock Resort is hosting A Night of Bluegrass Nov. 30 with local band Left at the Junction, as well as Viper Central and John Resichman. Tickets are $40 and include entry and appetizers. Call 250-726-4800 or 1-877-762-5011 to reserve. Also on the musical side, the Wickaninnish Inn has been hosting several local talents in the Driftwood Lounge (now licensed) on alternating Thursdays. In November see Duncan Booth (Nov. 7) and Candace Dawn (Nov. 21), both from 6:30-9pm. The evenings feature tapas-style sharing plates. The Pointe Restaurant is also launching a fall menu with seasonal ingredients, a collaboration between new executive chef Warren Barr and restaurant chef David Sider. www.wickinn.com Happy holiday season from Tofino! —Jen Dart VANCOUVER: Chef Wayne Martin’s Crave on Main has sadly closed after almost eight years. The restaurant was not able to renew the lease due to the landlord’s redevelopment plans for the site. No news at time of printing as to a new location, but fingers crossed that the short rib poutine and caprese grilled cheese sandwich will be back on a menu somewhere soon. Sean Heather, proprietor of Heather Hospitality Group, has sold Judas Goat to former employee Shoel Cont’d on the next page
TIME TOGETHER IS A REAL GIFT The holidays are an important time. And one of the best ways to spend that time is with people you love in a place like the Wickaninnish Inn. Walks on the beach, incredible cuisine and the best wines in the region await. Space is limited, book now for the holidays at: www.wickinn.com/package-types
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Davidson, who has opened Gringo (no website), a Mexi-Cali-inspired restaurant, in partnership with industry veteran Christina Cottell. In other news…Heather has been inducted into the BC Restaurant Hall of Fame, along with Donnelly Group founder Jeff Donnelly; Pacific Institute of Culinary Arts Program Director and COO, Julian Bond; Jay Jones, executive bartender and brand ambassador for Donnelly Group; Caren McSherry, founder of Gourmet Warehouse; and John Neate, founder of JJ Bean. Emad Yacoub, proprietor of The Glowbal Collection group of restaurants (glowbalgroup.com), has been named Restaurateur of the Year at the 25th Annual Pinnacle Awards, which recognize Canada’s top culinary and hospitality professionals. Market by Jean-Georges (marketbyjgvancouver.com) at the Shangri-La Hotel Vancouver has promoted Montgomery Lau, former Senior Sous Chef at Market, to Chef de Cuisine. In addition, David Auer (Divino, Uva, Cibo, Le Gavroche) has been appointed Restaurant Manager. Lauren Mote, mixologist extraordinaire and founder of Bittered Sling (bitteredsling.com), has taken over the bar program at Uva Wine Bar. Q4 Restaurant Group (q4restaurant.com) has re-launched Q4 Al Centro as Tappo Restobar (“tappo” means “cork” in Italian). Look for a variety of small plates—most under $16—as well as rotating wine list of 40 labels available by bottle and glass and Mediterranean-inspired cocktails. The Emerald (the-emerald.ca), a retro Vegas-style lounge and restaurant, has opened at 555 Gore Street in Chinatown. Try the waffle fries and one of the classic cocktails, or enjoy some of the craft, local brews on tap. Good Wolfe Kitchen & Bar (goodwolfe.ca) has opened at 1043 Mainland Street in Yaletown. Owners Richard Goodine and chef Josh Wolfe has created a casual, bistro-style space that focuses on re-imagined classics like coq au vin and braised beef cheeks, as well as contemporary cocktails and a well-edited wine list. Homer Street Café & Bar (homerstreetcafebar.com), has launched a Sunday brunch menu of re-imagined favourites like rotisserie pork belly, maple chicken cobbler and Nutellabanana Montecristo sandwiches. Revolver Coffee (revolvercoffee.ca) on Cambie is expanding their operations to include the space next door, which will host Archive, a retail space with a focus on coffee-related paraphernalia. Look for it to open in time for holiday shopping. Matchstick Coffee Roasters (matchstickcoffee.com) will be opening a second location in Chinatown at 213 East Georgia, near other newcomers like Mamie Taylor’s and East of Main, and just around the corner from Harvest and The Parker. This could be the next Gastown. Look for the opening in the new year. —Anya Levykh WHISTLER: Food and wine lovers head to Whistler for the 17th Annual Cornucopia presented by BlueShore Financial, which runs from November 7th to 17th. Highlights of the eleven day festival include House Party-Best of BC, Crush Gala Grand Tasting, Top 25 Celebration held at the Whistler Public Library, Night market-A taste of Asia, House Party - Celebrates One Night in Argentina and the various BC winemaker’s dinners offered at Araxi Restaurant. From $35.00 to $108.25. Visit the website: whistlercornucopia.com for pricing and dates. OKANAGAN: Closings/Openings- Sadly, Executive Chef Colin Rayner has left Bonita’s Bistro at Bonita’s Winery in Summerland. Vintage Hospitality Management owned by Dave Keeler will no longer be operating Mica Restaurant at Spirit Ridge Resort in Osoyoos but adds the new restaurant at Liquidity Winery, which will be opening in spring, 2014 to his portfolio. The much-anticipated opening of Micro Restaurant in Kelowna by the award-winning team, Audrey Surrao and chef Rod Butters is scheduled to be open in time to celebrate the winter season after lengthy delays due to liquor licensing. Winter wine tourism heats up the Okanagan with special events, lighting up the vines and holiday open houses. Join the Oliver and Osoyoos Wineries for their 5th Annual Winter in Wine Country held Nov. 22nd-24th. Summerland’s Bottleneck Drive Wineries host their 3rd Annual Light up the Vines event on Nov. 30th –Dec.1st. The Okanagan Falls Wineries Association hosts their 2nd Annual Holiday Cheer event Nov. 30th-Dec.1st. The Westside Wine Trail holds their Sip into the Season event on Sun. Dec. 1st. The Similkameen Wineries Association holds their 3rd Annual Holiday Open Wineries on the weekend of Dec.6th -8th. Enjoy special hotel off-season rates, wine tastings and holiday cheer. See wine association websites for details. Big Reds at Big White Ski Resort is now a weekend event and takes place on December 13th and 14th. Come meet the winemaker’s of the Okanagan and explore the growing culinary scene at Big White with various winemaker’s dinner and events. bigwhite.com For New Years Eve - Join the British Columbia Wine Appreciation Society for their second annual Escape to Wine Country which includes luxury coach transportation from Vancouver to Osoyoos, 3 days of wine touring, special winemaker’ dinners and concludes with a New Years Eve extravaganza of food and wine including champagne sabering at Miradoro Restaurant at Tinhorn Creek Winery. For prices and information: www.bcwas.com/events Other Okanagan wineries celebrating New Years Eve include Vanilla Pod Restaurant at Poplar Grove Winery, Quails Gate Winery and Summerhill Pyramid Winery. View websites for pricing and details. Wishing you and yours all the best to eat and drink for 2014. —Claire Sear
Your Friendly Neighbourhood Butcher ... A Cut Above Quality meats, Poultry, Cheeses, Specialty Products & Condiments
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TALK By Rebecca Baugniet
What the Pros Know WE ASK BAKERS TO TELL US WHAT BREAD OR BAKED GOOD THEY ASSOCIATE MOST WITH THE HOLIDAYS?
1 rack of lamb For the crust: 2 tbsp olive oil 2 tbsp mint, chopped 2 tbsp parsley, chopped 2 tsp Moroccan La Kama Kosher salt, to taste
For the Sauce: 1 c chicken stock 1/2 c tomato sauce 1 tbsp mint, chopped 1 tbsp parsley, chopped pinch sugar salt & pepper to taste
Combine oil, mint, parsley Moroccan La Kama and salt. Cut lamb rack in half and trim of excess fat. Rub spice mixture on lamb and let rest at room temperature about 1 hour. Preheat oven to 450°. Roast lamb racks for about 25 Recipes, minutes. Remove to a plate, let rest tented with foil. stores Remove excess fat from the lamb roasting pan, add stock and tomato sauce. Bring to a simmer, reduce and more monsooncoast.com until slightly thickened. Add mint, parsley, salt and pepper to taste. Cut lamb racks into chops and serve on a pool of sauce.
From the Fro Bazaars of Salt Spring Island
Mark and Megan Theobald at the new Leaven Woodfire Bakery. Jeneen & Richard Harrison, Bakers/Owners - Bond Bond's, Victoria Shortbread! It was a staff consensus that shortbread has been a holiday staple (in the tin can of course!) at our family gatherings that appealed to all - young and old. We know this must be true for our customers as well since our all butter shortbread keeps us busy baking it fresh daily during holiday season.
Karin Piett, East Village Bakery, Vancouver At East Village Bakery, we work hard to recreate those traditional holiday baked treats but in a gluten free way, without a compromise to taste. That means mincemeat tartins and tartlets become vegetarian and gluten free but remain delicious and hugely popular. We also do wonderful shortbreads and many traditional Christmas cookies using cherries, other fruits, nuts and chocolate. Our holiday treats have a ton of heart made with passion, alongside other great quality ingredients.
Byron Fry, Baker/Owner, Fry's Bakery, Victoria The Christmas season is always really exciting but a ton of hard, hard work and long hours. The most fantastic thing for me is the amount of bread people consume. I love it when people come together to feed each other, and during the holidays they don't hold back. For us, our seasonal specialty is Stollen, a lovely rich bread filled with housecandied citrus peel, rum-soaked raisins and roasted almonds, all wrapped around a homemade marzipan core. It's a lot of work but it's lovely to share with our community.
Mark Theobald, Baker/Owner, Leaven Woodfire Bakery, Victoria Pfeffernusse! It’s a traditional German spiced gingerbread cookie that I grew up with in my family. My mum would make them only once a year – at Christmas and I’ve carried on the same tradition with my family. We plan to be carrying them at the bakery this year, but they are quite labour-intensive as they have to be hand-rolled, so they will be available in limited quantities only! They’re made with honey and spiced with nutmeg, cinnamon, allspice, clove, cardamom and ginger. I find the traditional hard icing takes away from the flavour, so we just dust them with icing sugar. It’s just a beautiful gingerbread cookie.
Tara Black, Pastry Chef and Co-owner, Origin Bakery, Victoria I love cookies!! And when the holiday season hits it gives us a great excuse to make lots of varieties with many flavors and textures. In the fall we start to work with different groundnuts, like hazelnut lintzer cookies - super yummy. Then there comes pumpkin
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spice cookies with maple glaze and by the time Christmas season shows up we are playing with mint shortbreads, spiced sugar cookies with lemony glazes. Seriously, there are just so many good cookies and never enough time to make or eat them all!
Mary Mackay, Head Baker, Terra Breads, Vancouver A long standing Terra Breads tradition is Italian Panettone Christmas Bread. Our Panettone is made with our natural sourdough starter, Rabbit River cage-free eggs, milk and butter. We bake a traditional fruit version made with organic raisins, organic black mission figs, sweetened dried cranberries, natural apricots and sweetened orange zest. We also offer a popular dark chocolate and cherry Panettone, which makes fantastic French toast to share with family and friends any holiday morning.
Bruce Steward, True Grain Bakery, Cowichan Bay Nothing says Festive like shortbread! We try to really bring out the nuance of the grain in our shortbread. Our spelt shortbread made with BC Grown and milled spelt has proven to be a huge hit. This year look for emmer and einkorn shortbread. Organic butter, organic sugar and BC grown and milled ancient grains. Hard to beat!
David Terry, Baker, Wildfire Bakery, Victoria Every year, across Europe and North America, the annual appearance of Christmas Stollen has come to symbolize both the essence and the culinary indulgence of the holiday season. Half bread, half cake, even described as a leavened shortbread for its extremely high butter content, this hefty loaf has all the delicious flavors of the season, in one bite. A denser and more substantial cousin to Panettone, with cardamom, rum-soaked currants and raisins, candied peel, marzipan filling and drenched in a buttery sugar coating, itâ€™s hard to resist a second or third helping of this seasonal delight.
Cliff Leir, Baker/Owner, Fol Epi, Victoria Panettone is what tortures me over the holidays. I love it, but it involves a long wild yeast fermentation process that demands a complicated feeding schedule for the starter, so I have to get up every four hours through the night to feed it. The dough gets built in two stages. In the middle of the night the bakery smells amazing as the final dough mixes. Then we have to fight with the pastry bakers for oven space while they are trying to fit in their stollen baking in the afternoon. It ends up involving everyone at the bakery, with some people candying citrus peel, others scraping out vanilla beans, my kids come in after school to help hang them upside down to cool and night cleaners package them at the end of their shift. Then a few days away from Christmas, exhausted, we think we've made enough, but they sell out and we have work around the clock to make more. It's beautiful, I look forward to it all year.
Terry Mosicki, Baker/Owner, Lone Tree Bakery, Victoria Gingerbread Houses. It's always something we did as a family - the smells of ginger and cinnamon and molasses - it just screams Christmas! I made a monster-size gingerbread house when I was at Blackrock Resort (Ucluelet) with a pretzel base, and gumdrop trees and Shreddies for the roof. I'd love to have a gingerbread house display in the bakery's windows this holiday season, time permitting. E
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