Vancouver Mac and Cheese Challenge April 6 – 30, 2017

Mac and Cheese; we all grew up with it, but as we grew up, so did the Mac and Cheese.  Below are creations by 4 restaurants in the Vancouver lower mainland to show us their take on Mac and Cheese.  Lucky, me; I’m one of the judges.  I will be sure to try to pair each dish with a glass of wine and/or beer, and be sure to tell you via Instagram and Twitter.   Keep an eye for my posts.  Here is the announcement from Vancouver Foodster.

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Welcome to the Vancouver Foodster Mac & Cheese Challenge. Restaurants from all over the city were invited to enter their mac and cheese into this challenge, most of the restaurants have created a special mac and cheese just for this challenge. Each restaurant will be featuring their mac and cheese on their menu from April 6-30, 2017.

How Does this all Work? For the public challenge, you are invited to go out and order any or all of the mac and cheese creations in this challenge, then you decide who you think has the best mac and cheese creation for the People’s Choice award winners. 

Share your experiences: Tweet (and don’t forget to tweet or instagram your photos) throughout the challenge, our twitter and instagram address is @vanfoodster and the hashtag is #MacChallengeYVR please include this hashtag in all your tweets during the challenge.

Voting criteria –  some things to help you judge your favourite mac and cheese creations – keep these things in mind: originality, creativity, uniqueness, traditional, non-traditional, price, value and most importantly taste.

Get some friends together and make a night of it, visit a couple restaurants or more to share and taste the different Mac and Cheese creations or go solo or with a friend – just remember to VOTE for your favourites between April 6-30, 2017.

The Creations

Here are the Mac and Cheese creations in this challenge, listed in no particular order other than when they were received by us.

Mosaic Grille

The Mac Daddy

The Mac Daddy

Price: Full      $36; Half        $24; Taster    $16

Created by: Executive Chef Jeff Szombaty & Jo Ong Sous Chef

Description: Canadian lobster. cavatappi. olive oil cured sundried tomato. havarti-gouda mornay sauce. truffle essence

Offered: 4:30pm- 10:30pm daily

Mosaic Grille

655 Burrard Street, Vancouver

Tel:   604-639-4768

Web:  https://vancouver.regency.hyatt.com/en/hotel/home.html

Twitter:    @HyattVancouver

Instagram: @HyattVancouver

Tour de Feast

In your Belly Mac & Cheese

In your Belly Mac & Cheese

Price: $14.50

Created by: Chef DJ

Description: Casareccia pasta, gruyere cheese, sauce maornay, twice cooked organic Fraser valley pork belly, truffle Parmesan bread crumbs.

Offered: 7 days a week 10 am to 2:30 pm

Tour de Feast

319 Mountain Highway, North Vancouver

Tel: (604) 980-1811

Web: http://tourdefeast.com/

Twitter: @de_feast

Instagram: @tourdefeast319

Storm Crow Tavern

Mother of Dragons Mac and Cheese

Mother of Dragons Mac and Cheese

Price: $16

Created by: Chef Sam Cargnelli and Allie Szakacs

Description:   Semolina macaroni in a carbonara-style sauce with parmesan, Two Rivers smoked bacon, Golden Ears Cheesecrafters Gold Creek Munster-style cheese with Neufchâtel crèma and house-made spicy ketchup topped with a Dragon’s Egg (a mac and cheese ball wrapped in a Red Devil pork sausage, with a cheese curd center!)

Offered: Offered during lunch and dinner

Storm Crow Tavern

1305 Commercial Drive, Vancouver

Tel: (604) 566-9669

Web: http://www.stormcrowtavern.com/

Twitter: @stormcrowtavern

Instagram:  @stormcrowtavern

Hopcott Meats

Pulled Beef Mac & Cheese

Pulled Beef Mac & Cheese

Price: $9.95

Created by: Chef Christina Sepidoza

Description: Slow cooked Hopcott beef brisket, pulled and then braised in red wine and aromatic vegetables piled on top of macaroni with aged cheddar and cheese curds, topped with homemade onion straws and special house ketchup

Offered: During lunch hours: 10:30 to 4:00, Seven days a week

Hopcott Meats

18385 Old Dewdney Trunk Road, Pitt Meadows

Tel: 604.465.7799

Web: http://www.hopcottmeats.ca/

Twitter @HopcottFarms

Instagram @hopcottfarms

 

Make sure you pick up one of the Mac and Cheese Challenge postcards available at each of the participating restaurants. Remember to Vote for your favourites daily, all the voting details are at

http://vancouverfoodster.com/mac-and-cheese-challenge/ 

Our Judges

Our Media judges for this challenge are:

Karl Kliparchuk

Wine, Food & Travel Writer for MyWinePal

Twitter: @MyWinePal

Areta Wong

Blogger of Foodgressing

Twitter: @foodgressing

David Grange

Blogger for BCFoodieBlogger

Twitter: @BCfoodieblogger

Six Ingredients for THE Perfect Evening Out with Dish ‘n Dazzle

Dish ‘n Dazzle is your recipe for Fun & Fundraising
[Vancouver, BC]: Dish ‘n Dazzle, one of Vancouver’s most-anticipated wine, food and cocktail events, returns to the Vancouver Convention Centre (999 Canada Place) on Thursday, May 18. Tickets are onsale now for $89 per person, exclusively online.
With a tip of the hat to the hospitality industry, the organizers offer six ingredients as a recipe for the perfect night out:
Wine: Each year, the BC Hospitality Foundation partners with a new wine country. This edition features Wines of Chile. Up to fifteen wineries from Chile will share the latest vintages for wine lovers. New for this year will be an exclusive “Pequeña table”, offering a chance to experience limited production wines from Chile’s boutique wineries.
Food: Up to fourteen of BC’s finest chefs and restaurants will be on hand to serve unique culinary creations, some of which were created just for Dish ‘n Dazzle. The complete list will be available soon at dishndazzle.com.
Cocktails: The evening’s signature cocktail competition invites six of the city’s top bartenders to craft all-new libations with a Chilean theme. Each bartender is competing for the coveted Derek Vanderheide trophy, named in honour of a dearly departed Vancouver bartender.
Music: The evening wouldn’t be complete without live music from celebrated Vancouver-based R&B and blues band Les Is More, who never fail to ignite the crowd.
Silent Auction / Prizes: The curated Silent Auction and Grand Prize Raffle is always one of the highlights of the evening, featuring one-of-a-kind items including hotel stays, adventure packages, and much more.
Fundraising: Dish ‘n Dazzle is the signature fundraiser for the BC Hospitality Foundation’s latest beneficiaries and scholarship winners. Funds raised from this event have helped support nearly 275 industry workers and students with more than $800,000 in financial assistance.

Ancora Waterfront Dining Candlelight Champagne Dinner!

Vancouver, B.C. (September 14, 2016): Join Ancora Waterfront Dining and Patio for an intimate dining event this October, where guests will gather at the scenic waterfront location to experience a carefully curated selection of Moët & Chandon Champagnes paired with an exclusive five-course menu crafted by Executive Chef Ricardo Valverde.
Lauded as one of the top seafood restaurants in Vancouver, Ancora has wowed visitors and locals alike with its dynamic fusion cuisine that highlights West Coast seafood with Peruvian-Japanese accents. After a spectacular first year and range of awards – including being named among Canada’s 100 Best Restaurants and a recent nomination as one of Canada’s Best New Restaurants by enRoute magazine – Ancora has plenty of reasons to celebrate and, true to form, will do so with one of the world’s finest Champagne houses.
The glamorous anniversary dinner takes place on Wednesday, October 5, and begins at 6pm with a Champagne tower reception, followed by a communal-style dinner at the restaurant’s sleek long table. Led by hosts General Manager Andrea Vescovi, Restaurant Manager Kane Morgan and a Moët-Hennessy brand ambassador, guests will enjoy a selection of top Moët & Chandon bubbles (ranging from Dom Perignon to Moët Rosé Impérial), perfectly paired with Chef Valverde’s five vibrant courses.
“After such an incredible opening year, we wanted to treat our great supporters to a truly special night,” said General Manager Andrea Vescovi. “We take pride in our unique offerings – and what better way to showcase this than with a dinner featuring the Champagne house of Moët & Chandon alongside Chef Valverde’s inspired dishes.”
The 40-person dinner begins at 6pm sharp. Tickets are $200 per person (plus tax and gratuity), and include all food and wine pairings. To book, email info@ancoradining.com or call604.681.1164.
About Ancora Waterfront Dining and Patio:
Situated along Vancouver’s picturesque False Creek seawall, Ancora Waterfront Dining and Patio dishes up West Coast sustainable cuisine with Peruvian and Japanese flare. The former home of C Restaurant has been transformed into a sleek, modern fine dining space. Embracing the city’s stunning waterfront landscape, Ancora’s contemporary design features a subtle yet sophisticated mix of soft blues, sand-inspired neutrals and light woods. The comprehensive menu is built on the cornerstones of sustainable seafood, fresh and local ingredients, and uncommon international elements. The restaurant’s unique dishes combine flavours and techniques that embrace diverse cultures and show a deep understanding of the city’s culinary evolution. Guests can expect a mix of West Coast, punchy Peruvian-inspired meals, and artistic Japanese creations served fresh from the crudo bar. Ancoradining.com

Vancouver’s Thai Confusion – Great Thai Tapas

Thai Confusion logoThis past week had the official opening of Thai Confusion by owner Thai Keattivanichvily, who also owns Bob Likes Thai Food.  What makes this restaurant different is that Tai is introducing Vancouverites to “Grub Gam” or Thai tapas.  Thai Confuion is located on Pender (117 West Pender) across the corner from Tinseltown, where Wild Rice used to be located.   The restaurant is nicely decorated and has solid wood tables that are not covered up.  I enjoy the look and feel of wood, more than having everything covered up with table cloths.   We were treated to several of their dishes, along with signature cocktails and some of the wines served at the restaurant.

To start off your dinner, try the Lychee Mimosa made with lychee juice and sparkling wine, which I believe is Averill Creek Charm de L’ile.  It is exceptionally tasty.  A few dishes that stood out for me were the:

  • Three Citrus Salad (Yum Som O) – a salad made with pomelo fruit, a relative of the grapefruit, together with tamarind sauce and chili
  • Thom Kha with a Fried Curry Rice Ball – made with a galangal coconut milk base soup, with basil, lemongrass, and lime; while the rice appeared to be a mixture of white and black rice and/or wild rice
  • Thai Poutine – deep fried sliced of taro root topped with lemongrass, Thai basil, lime lead chili and green curry sauce, and also served with a deep fried soft shell crab.
  • Curry Fish in Banana Leaf (Hor Mok Pla) – Marinated then grilled on a banana leaf with coconut milk, turmeric, red curry paste, kaffir lime and relish

The Three Citrus Salad is a wonderfully refreshing way to start or end a meal, with citrus and bitterness from the pomelo, crunch from pomegranite seeds, saltiness and spiciness from the tamarind suace and chili.  Highly recommended.

Thai Confusion - Three Citrus Salad

Thai Confusion – Three Citrus Salad

The Thom Kha with Fried Curry Rice Ball, is like an Italian Arancini gone Thai.  I loved the texture of the rice; both sticky and crunchy, combined with the wonderful, rich coconut milk based soup.  Another dish not to miss.

Thai Confusion - Thom Kha with Fried Curry Rice Ball

Thai Confusion – Thom Kha with Fried Curry Rice Ball

Thai Poutine.  Who knew?  Well no potatoes here; rather taro root, sliced very thin so that when it is fried, it comes out very crunchy.  I am not sure if the soft shell crab will normally come with this dish, but offers richness to the dish.

Thai Confusion - Thai Poutine with soft shelled crab

Thai Confusion – Thai Poutine with soft shelled crab

Curry Fish in Banana Leaf comes with a small fish, around the size of your hand.  I am not sure the name of the fish, but it is white fleshed, and had no bones, although Tai may have removed the bones ahead of time.  The fish was covered with a paste before grilling. The fish was served on a banana leaf that went into the grill, so you get some smokiness from the banana leaf, together with the flavours from the Thai spices, and the medium texture from the fish.  Another dish you should try.  It is small, so no problem finishing it off.

Thai Confusion - Curry Fish in Banana Leaf

Thai Confusion – Curry Fish in Banana Leaf

Besides the Lychee Mimosa another cocktail we were served was the Bourbon of Bangkok made from bourbon, lime and apricot jam with ginger beer.  A nice contrast of ginger spice, citrus, sweet and the darker flavours of bourbon.  You can also taste a selection of 4 white and 2 red wines and 6 different beers.  Check out their website for the list of their beverages.

This would be a nice place to have a quick Thai tapas meal before going to a hockey or football game, or maybe a movie at Tinseltown.  Enjoy.

 

Abbotsford Harvest Dinner setting at Mt Lehman Winery

Abbotsford Harvest Dinner – Wine, Beer, Main Dishes and Dessert

Circle Farm TourMany of us aspire to the 100 mile diet.  Keeping our food local.  Supporting our farmers.  But here in Vancouver, have you considered that those farmers, might be a 30-45 minute drive away in Abbotsford, in the Fraser Valley?  I was invited as part of the Circle Farm Tour to experience an Abbotsford Harvest Dinner, and was pleasantly surprised by the bounty of food, wine and beer that is available.

The dinner starting with chatting and sampling local beer from Ravens Brewing Company.  This brewery just opened earlier this year and collaborates with local growers and suppliers to craft artisan beer.  I tried their English Dark Mild.  It was indeed dark, with a charcoal and dark malt flavour to it, but not too heavy, so that you can enjoy more food and wine.

The dishes we enjoyed were:

  • Campbell’s Gold honey roasted, local delicata squash with pumpkin seeds, Abbotsford goat cheese from Mt. Lehman Cheese (appetizer)
  • Maple Hills Farm’s chicken roulade with creamy polenta and kale chips (appetizer)
  • Lepp Farm Market’s pork loin wrapped in bacon with savory shallot and plum marmalade (entree)
  • Yarrow Meadows’ duck breast with balsamic pearl onions (entree)
  • Roasted local beets and parsnips (entree)
  • Organic Fraser Valley rice risotto with roasted shiitake mushrooms (entree)
  • Birchwood Dairy’s vanilla ice cream topped with Gojoy Berries’ goji berry compote (dessert)
  • Onnink’s chocolate blueberry bonbons (dessert)

I must say that it was nice to meet, or have the farmers from Abbotsford introduce themselves to us as we sat at a beautifully set table in the barrel room of Mt. Lehman Winery.  Thanks also to Chef Jeff Massey from Restaurant 62 who prepared all these dishes for us.

The farmers supplying our food and drink are:

The dishes come from fresh ingredients from the vegetables, to the pork, chicken and duck.  A few standout dishes for me were first the honey roasted local delicata squash with pumpkin seeds and goat cheese.  Creamy sweetness from the squash, with creaminess from the cheese and a bit of crunch from the pumpkin seeds.  The Lepp Farm Market’s pork loin wrapped in bacon was also outstanding for me.  The bacon comes from Lepp, and is smoked by them.  No artificially aged bacon here.  The flavour of the bacon was really outstanding and makes you think about the industrial bacon you buy in grocery stores.  No comparison.  If you have never tried roasted beets, give them a try.  I really like the earthiness of the beets.  And the blueberry bonbons are also a very tasty way to end dessert.  Good quality chocolate mixed with blueberries.  You cannot go wrong with this combination.  All the dishes were very good, and I present to you pictures of these dishes for your visual consumption below.  If any of this food or wine sparks your interest, drive out to Abbotsford and buy from these farmers.

I must especially thank winery owner Vern Siemens for opening bottles of every white and red wine I think they make, for us to experiment and pair with all the dishes at our Abbotsford Harvest dinner.  I in particular liked Mt. Lehman’s Pinot Noir and Unoaked Chardonnay, and felt they made good pairings with many dishes.

Mt Lehman Unoaked Chardonnay Pinot Gris Pinot Noir and Merlot Reserve wines

Mt Lehman Unoaked Chardonnay Pinot Gris Pinot Noir and Merlot Reserve wines

Ravens Brewing Company English Dark Mild beer

Ravens Brewing Company English Dark Mild beer

Campbells Gold honey roasted local delicata squash with pumpkin seeds, Abbotsford goat cheese from Mt Lehman Cheese

Campbell’s Gold honey roasted local delicata squash with pumpkin seeds, Abbotsford goat cheese from Mt Lehman Cheese

Maple Hills Farm's chicken roulade with creamy polenta and kale chips

Maple Hills Farm’s chicken roulade with creamy polenta and kale chips

Roasted local beets and parsnips

Roasted local beets and parsnips

Yarrow Meadows' duck breast with balsamic pearl onions

Yarrow Meadows’ duck breast with balsamic pearl onions

Organic Fraser Valley rice risotto with roasted shiitake mushrooms

Organic Fraser Valley rice risotto with roasted shiitake mushrooms

Lepp Farm Market's pork loin wrapped in bacon with savory shallot and plum marmalade

Lepp Farm Market’s pork loin wrapped in bacon with savory shallot and plum marmalade

Birchwood Dairy's vanilla ice cream topped with Gojoy Berries' goji berry compote

Birchwood Dairy’s vanilla ice cream topped with Gojoy Berries’ goji berry compote

 

Taste of Tulalip Wine + Food Celebration Announces Star-studded Line-Up for 7th Annual Festival

I love this event.  Enough said!  Get your tickets asap.

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Taste of Tulalip Wine + Food Celebration Announces Star-studded Line-Up for 7th Annual Festival
Tickets go on Sale August 14, 2015

 

Taste of Tulalip

Taste of Tulalip

Tulalip, Washington — Tickets for the 7th annual Taste of Tulalip, held at the Tulalip Resort Casino, will go on pre-sale at 9:00 a.m. PDT on August 14, 2015. Executive Chef Perry Mascitti and Sommelier Tommy Thompson have spent the past year organizing a star-studded line-up of food, wine and traditional show-stopping entertainment for ticket holders. Run, don’t walk, when purchasing your passes because this highly anticipated event sells out every year. Seats for the Friday, November 13 celebration dinner may be purchased by calling (360) 716-6888, and the passes for the Saturday, November 14 events can be purchased via Ticketmaster atwww.ticketmaster.com.

The 2-day festival, with a focus on wine, food and tradition, begins with the Friday night wine and passed hors d’oeuvres reception, followed by the fittingly named Celebration Dinner. The multi-course repast celebrates “La Famiglia,” as the Italians say, it’s all about “the family!” The evening’s inspiration comes from the love of Italian grandmothers everywhere who have a special passion for cooking amazing food every day for their families. In tribute, Tulalip chefs will recreate many of their beloved recipes, paired with a global offering of rare, top wines. Friday night’s Celebration Dinner is priced at $225 per person, and tickets are limited.

On Saturday “All Access” pass holders ($350 per person) will enjoy early entrance to the unforgettable Grand Taste and Rock and Roll Challenge; a wine seminar — Washington State AVA Smackdown featuring some of the State’s tops wine producers, hosted by superstar wine guy, Anthony Giglio. Also featured, a VIP seminar featuring Chef Chris Cosentino’s cooking demo, table talk and Q & A session on the Albert Lee Appliance Cooking Stage; and a private Magnum Party where guests will be treated to a selection of high level wine and food pairings.

The weekend’s highlight is always the Grand Taste, spanning four hours and featuring lavish food stations, as well as over 100 wines from Washington state, Oregon, California, Oporto, Maderia, global selections of bubbles, as well as pours of late harvest and ice wines and craft beer. Grand Taste is priced at $110 per person and includes the edgy Rock -n- Roll Cooking Challenge – a fast-paced culinary roller coaster with slammin’ rock and roll music! Expect fun and great tunes as local Seattle and Tulalip Chefs and Sommeliers compete “Iron Chef” style with celebrity judges (Chef Chris Cosentino, Chef Thierry Rautureau, Chef T, and Mauny Kaseberg), who are looking for the best dish and wine pairing. This year’s emcee will be the famously entertaining Chris Cosentino from San Francisco’s Cockscomb and Boccalone, along with wine writer, educator and raconteur, Anthony Gigilo. This show-stopping cook-off is sure to keep things lively and the chefs on their toes!

To top off the weekend, Thompson will also feature an in-depth reserve wine tasting/seminar called “Turning Water Into Wine” with Sparky and Sarah Marquis of the award-winning Australian winery, Mollydooker Wines. The tasting line-up will include 12 of Mollydooker Wine’s recently released 2014 wines. Tickets are priced at $125 per person and are available for purchase by calling (360) 716 1239.

And now for the stars of the Taste of Tulalip Wine + Food Celebration weekend…

Sommelier Tom Thompson – Tulalip Resort Casino
Tulalip Wine Director Tom Thompson is always first in line to uncork the latest and greatest boutique finds. He has carefully selected well over 100 pours from Washington, Oregon, California, Germany, and New Zealand for the “Wine Event of the Year”, as recognized by the Washington Wine Commission. Thompson continues to add breadth to Tulalip’s extensive cellar, garnering Wine Spectator’s Best of Award of Excellence.

Executive Chef Perry Mascitti – Tulalip Resort Casino
Executive Chef Perry is the man behind the pan! He oversees seven dining venues, in-room meals for the Four Diamond hotel and catering for the entire Resort Casino. His creativity shines along with that of his culinary team at the multi-course Celebration Dinner, the nibbles of endless proportions at the Grand Taste, and he is the mastermind behind the Rock and Roll Challenge.

Chris Cosentino – Guest Chef
Chris Cosentino, aka @OffalChris, is the Chef/Owner of Cockscomb and Boccalone and an Award-Winning Chef and Cookbook Author. Cosentino is a graduate of the culinary program at Johnson & Wales University and went on to build his résumé at Red Sage in Washington, D.C. and Rubicon, Chez Panisse, Belon, and Redwood Park in the San Francisco Bay Area. Cosentino took his first executive chef position at Incanto in 2002 where his inspired and innovative interpretations of rustic Italian fare promptly earned the restaurant both critical and popular acclaim. Cosntino’s debut on BRAVO’s “Top Chef Masters” series was a huge success earning over $140,000 for the Michael J. Fox foundation for Parkinson’s research and being named the season four winner. And in 2012, he saw the debut of his first cookbook “Beginnings: My Way to Start a Meal”.

Anthony Giglio – Wine Expert
Anthony Giglio is a writer, educator and raconteur who motivates countless imbibers to trust their own tastes and relax the rules. Giglio’s witty, unpretentious style can be discerned in the weekly column he writes for Details Magazine’s “Food + Drinks” section. He has written 10 books, including three editions of the annual FOOD & WINE MAGAZINE Wine Guide review of 1,000+ wines; five editions of the enormously popular Mr. Boston Official Bartender’s Guide; and his highly-regarded first book, Cocktails in New York.

Mike Gobin – 2015 Taste of Tulalip Featured Artist
Native American artist Michael Gobin meticulously uses his hands and knives to carve the Pacific Northwest’s indigenous red and yellow cedar trees in an effort to bring the sacred wood back to life. A treasure to the community, Gobin skillfully resurrects Tulalip’s traditions and ancestral stories through his works of art.

Kerry Shiels – 2015 Honorary Winemaker Côte Bonneville
After earning her Engineering degree, Shiels worked for two years in Torino, Italy, and then moved on to Case New Holland’s world headquarters in Chicago for 18 months before entering the world of wine. From there, Kerry worked the 2006 vintage at Joseph Phelps Vineyards, 2007 harvest at Australia’s Tahbilk, and then went on to work the 2007 vintage at Folio – Michael Mondavi’s Napa winery. During the 2008 harvest, Shiels served as the assistant white winemaker to Rich Arnold at Robert Mondavi Winery, followed by the antipodal 2010 harvest at Tapiz in Argentina, and then finally returning home to work full-time at Côte Bonneville.

Bill Wixey – Emcee
Having grown up in the Pacific Northwest, Bill feels privileged to chronicle the issues that affect his community. A newsroom leader, he has anchored and reported in the Seattle area since 1998, and is co-host of This Morning on Q13 FOX News weekdays from 7 to 10 a.m. Offering commentary on major news events from all over the world, Wixey has reported from Asia following the 2004 tsunami, from Haiti after the 2010 earthquake and covered the Olympic Games in Beijing, Vancouver and London. He has been honored with two Emmys for his broadcast work.

Kaci Aitchison – Emcee

A Seattle native and proud University of Washington grad, Kaci picked up her first microphone as a sophomore, and hasn’t put it down since. She got her start in radio at KISS-FM, to meeting the big brothers she never knew she wanted as host on The Bob Rivers Morning Show. In 2009 she joined the Q13 This Morning as a features reporter and is now co-anchor.  Voted “Best Local TV Personality in Western Washington”, Aitchison is also one of the lead singers with local rock and roll band Spike and the Impalers.

Thierry Rautureau – Rock and Roll Challenge Guest Judge
For 26 years, Chef In The Hat Thierry Rautureau owned Rover’s Restaurant, which offered cuisine that Rautureau described as Northwest Contemporary with a French accent. Currently, Rautureau is the chef/owner of Luc and Loulay Kitchen & Bar in Seattle, Washington. Rautureau was born in the town of Saint Hilaire de Loulay in the Muscadet region of France. At 20, he moved to the United States and worked at various fine restaurants, including La Fontaine in Chicago, the Regency Club for Joachim Splichal in Los Angeles, and the Seventh Street Bistro with Laurent Quenioux, also in Los Angeles. While visiting Seattle in 1987, Rautureau dined at Rover’s and discovered that the restaurant was up for sale. Tired of Los Angeles, he decided to buy the restaurant so that he could express his culinary creativity as the chef/owner. The rest, as they say, is
history.

Mauny Kaseburg – Rock and Roll Challenge Guest Judge
Mauny Kaseburg is a Northwest-born, Paris-trained food and wine consultant who many will remember from her many years on KUOW radio. In 2015, Mauny celebrated her 28th year as Culinary Producer for the Food & Wine Magazine Classic in Aspen. Mauny also spent five years in the Northern California wine country, serving as Marketing Director for the Russian River Valley Winegrowers. She returned to Seattle in 2008 to marry the merman of her dreams – Geoff Golden.

Chef T (Savuthy Dy) Rione XIII – Rock and Roll Challenge Guest Judge
Savuthy Dy is a graduate of the California Culinary Academy and has worked at The Herb Farm, Qube, Piola y Crota in Italy, and Book Bindery, among others. Rock and Roll Challengers beware – Chef T was on the 2014 Taste of Tulalip Rock and Roll Challenge winning team.

Taste of Tulalip tickets go on sale August 14, 2015. Hotel rooms and spa appointments will become near and dear during this 2-day extravaganza. Reserve a room at the AAA Four Diamond resort by going to www.tulalipresort.com or by phoning 1-866-716-7162. For more information, visit www.tasteoftulalip.com.

The 2015 Taste of Tulalip sponsors include: Delta Air Lines, Albert Lee Appliance – Bosch and Thermador, Dillanos Coffee, Mercedes Benz of Lynnwood, Coke, Le Creuset, Seattle Magazine, and Tasting Room Magazine.

Enjoy Drinks and Tasty Dishes at Joe Fortes Rooftop Patio

Patio season is well underway in Vancouver. But have you ever considered enjoying the city view from a rooftop patio in downtown Vancouver? If not, give Joe Fortes on Thurlow, just off of Robson, a chance. I attended their patio kickoff recently, and they had great food from seafood and chicken tacos, oysters on the half shell, and other varieties of seafood. In addition they have a bar on the rooftop patio, so enjoy a glass of wine, or a glass of sparkling wine, beer, or other drink along with the great food. Below are a few pictures of the event to entice you.  I was sipping Segura Viduas Reserva Cava, Spanish sparkling.  It goes very well with seafood.   Enjoy the summer!

Joe Fortes: Crab legs prawns mussels oysters lobster and tuna for the taking

Joe Fortes: Crab legs prawns mussels oysters lobster and tuna for the taking

Joes Gold special oysters

Joes Gold special oysters

Two tacos from Joe Fortes rooftop patio

Two tacos from Joe Fortes rooftop patio

 

Tasting Plates Olympic Village Wednesday, July 8

Have you ever been to Olympic Village?  It is just around the corner from Science World.  You will know you are there when you see big, really big, metal bird sculptures.  But besides that there are plenty of restaurants in the area to try. Vancouver Foodster has put together Tasting Plates Olympic Village for you to enjoy on July 8.  Details from Vancouver Foodster are below.

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Tantalize your taste buds at several restaurants and establishments in the Olympic Village neighborhood in Vancouver. This tasting extravaganza goes from 6pm until 10pm and is presented by Vancouver Foodster.

Each restaurant will be serving up Tasting Plates for guests to enjoy and you will have a chance to visit many different types of restaurants throughout the event, meet some new food loving friends, meet the chefs, and learn about each of the participating restaurants.

Participating Restaurants: 

 

big rock beer

 big rock

Big Rock Urban Eatery

310 West 4th Avenue

Web: http://bigrockurban.com/

Twitter @BRUeateryYVR

Cuisine: Brewery and Restaurant

 

aqua

Aqua Sushi & Juice

1764 Manitoba Street

Web: http://www.aquajuicebar.com/

Twitter @aquajuicebar

Cuisine: Sushi and Juice

 

Rouge Bistro

91 W 2nd Avenue

Web: n/a

Twitter: n/a

Cuisine: Westcoast

 

Milano Coffee Roasters

156 West 8th Avenue

Web: http://www.milanocoffee.ca/

Twitter:@MilanoRoasters

Cuisine: cafe and coffee roastery

 

de-dutch-logo1

De Dutch Pannekoek House

410 West 2nd Avenue

Web: http://www.dedutch.com/

Twitter: @dedutch

Cuisine: Dutch

 

More restaurants and establishments to be announced soon

Purchase Tickets Here: 

Ticket price includes tasting plates at each of the participating restaurants throughout the evening. (Beverages are included at some restaurants which will be noted, you are welcome to purchase wine, beer, cocktails or mocktails at each of the participating restaurants).

Note: ALL Tickets must be purchased in advance online. All ticket sales are final. No exchanges or refunds; however you are welcome to transfer the ticket to another person for the same event if you notify us in advance with name (s) of who will be attending in your place. Event produced by CMI Chat Media Inc. This is an all ages event.

A Gastronomical Journey Through the “Garden of France” with Insight Vacations

Do you love French food and have time to go on a foodie journey in the Loire Valley this fall?  If so, you may want to consider signing up for this guided trip.  I came across it and it looks fabulous.  I’ve toured the Loire Valley on my own before, and loved the food and wine.  I’d love to take this trip myself.

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TORONTO – May 28, 2015 – Insight Vacations (www.insightvacations.com), the leader in premium and luxury escorted journeys, has introduced The Loire Valley (www.insightvacations.com/ca/special-offers/expert-hosted-collection/the-loire-valley) – a limited one-time departure that leads guests on a 13-day magical journey of food, wine and history through the villages and vineyards of the famed region. Designed to satisfy even the most discerning of food connoisseurs, The Loire Valley has been curated by Barbara Barde, an Insight Vacations Tour Director, and private certified sommelier Tom LeRoy.

Loire Valley tour

Loire Valley tour

“We are excited to launch our newest special interest trip in our Expert Hosted Collection, catered specifically to foodies and wine aficionados,” said Cris David, president, Insight Vacations Canada. “Insight Vacations is renowned for creating lasting experiences and memories with our guests, and with the help of Barbara Barde and Tom LeRoy, The Loire Valley culinary odyssey will offer our travellers an experience their palates will not soon forget.”

Departing September 26, 2015, this exclusive gastronomical adventure begins in Paris, one of the great culinary capitals of the world. Synonymous with wine production dating back to the 1st century, the region offers guests an incomparable cultural landscape of great beauty comprised of ancient towns and family owned vineyards. Guests will eat and drink their way through the “Garden of France”, all the while experiencing the Loire Valley through the eyes of a true gastronome with the help of local experts.

Each Insight Vacations escorted journey offers unique Signature Experiences where guests discover more than just the highlights other travel experiences provide. Travellers are introduced to local guides who immerse them in regional culture and unlock doors for them they simply cannot arrange on their own. Signature Experiences found on The Loire Valley include the following:

– Visit to the Maison Louis de Grenelle, the last remaining family-owned property of the major Saumur sparkling producers, where guests will learn the art of sustainable viticulture while 12 metres beneath the cobblestone streets of this historic town.

– Discover the fascinating secret world of mushrooms at the Musée du Champignon in the village of St. Hilaure, touring the underground cave exhibiting the many cultivation methods of the species indigenous to the region.

– Dine at the Cathédrales de la Saulaie, a 19th century subterranean restaurant located in a cathedral-sized Troglodyte cave specializing in local Pays de la Loire dishes.way to Chinon, learn the art of perfecting the balance of tradition and modernity in wine-making at the family-owned Frederic Mobileau Vigneron winery, known for offering multi-faceted wines from the Saint Nicolas de Bourgueil, Bourgueil, Saumur and Anjou appellations, whilst visiting the 2,000 hectares of the Couly-Duthier winery.

– At Sancerre, guests will sample the stunning varietals of this region long revered for specializing in 100 per cent Sauvignon Blanc wines while sampling sumptuous goat cheese at Chèveries de Chamons.

“Food and wine have long been passions of mine and I am proud to be personally hosting The Loire Valley. I have handpicked each experience to reflect my love of French gastronomy and look forward to welcoming guests to the ‘Garden of France’,” says Barbara Barde, Insight Vacations Tour Director.

Click on the following link to watch Barbara Barde explaining the Loire Valley itinerary: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p0O2E54xk0g

“It is an honour to be hosting with Barbara on this trip,” adds Tom LeRoy, wine sommelier. “I can think of no better way to share my passion for wine than to be the personal sommelier to guests on this special curated experience.”

To book this escorted journey or for more information, please visit www.insightvacations.com, contact Insight’s Sale Centre at 1-800-387-8490 or speak with your local travel agent.

About Barbara Barde

Barbara is an award winning television producer, with over 600 titles to her credit. She began appreciating and collecting wine almost 20 years ago and is known for her impressive cellar. She is also a “foodie”, always on the lookout for an amazing recipe, new ingredients, or a restaurant that no one has heard of. Barbara is also a passionate traveler and has spent the last several summers leading tours with Insight Vacations and other companies. She will be the Tour Director.

About Tom LeRoy

Wine Sommelier Tom LeRoy is a criminal lawyer in Toronto who began collecting and appreciating wine fifteen years ago. A true aficionado of wine, he has recently obtained a wine specialist certificate from George Brown College and was also certified as a Wine Sommelier by the Court of Master Sommeliers. Tom is also a member of the Canadian Association of Professional Sommeliers.

About Insight Vacations

For more than 35 years, Insight Vacations (www.insightvacations.com) has been designing the world’s finest escorted travel itineraries. Insight offers 113 journeys to more countries across Europe than any other operator and provides the same legendary service across North America, India, Bhutan, Nepal, Morocco, Egypt and Israel.

Insight guests enjoy The Art of Touring in Style with business-class legroom aboard customized luxury coaches, intimate groups of just 40 travellers and the services of an experienced Tour Director who acts as ‘travelling concierge.’ Each expertly planned itinerary includes a range of Signature Events for a unique and authentic look into the history and culture of each destination. Throughout their trip, guests will stay in handpicked hotels that are centrally or scenically located and have the perfect balance of guided and independent exploration.

For more information, visit us at http://www.insightvacations.com, on social media at http://www.facebook.com/InsightVacations, http://twitter.com/InsightVacation, and join the conversation using the hashtag #InsightMoments.

About TreadRight

Created as a joint initiative between The Travel Corporation’s family of brands, the TreadRight Foundation is a not-for-profit working to ensure the environment and communities we visit remain vibrant for generations to come. To date, TreadRight has supported more than 35 sustainable tourism projects worldwide. The Foundation’s guiding principle is to encourage sustainable tourism development through conservation, leadership and support for communities. Foundation priorities are set by the Steering Committee, which includes sustainability leaders like Céline Cousteau and Costas Christ.

TreadRight’s past project partners include WWF, Conservation International and The National Trust in the UK. Current initiatives include sponsoring the National Geographic Society’s inaugural “World Legacy Awards,” and inspiring wildlife advocates like Terri Irwin.

To learn more about our past and current work at TreadRight, please visit us at treadright.org.

 

Canadian Flavours Gala to Celebrate Canadian Food and Wine on April 30th – Contest

As part of EAT! Vancouver there is the Canadian Flavours Gala celebrating Canadian food and wine.  And I have a contest running where you have a chance to win 2 tickets to attend the Canadian Flavours Gala.  Information about the event is below, followed by my contest details.  Good luck and support this wonderful event.

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EAT Vancouver Canadian Flavours Gala

EAT Vancouver Canadian Flavours Gala

April 9, 2015 (Vancouver, BC) – Make space in your schedule for the Canadian Flavours Gala at Terminal City Club on Thursday, April 30 2015.  Guests will enjoy an evening with 15 chefs from some of Canada’s best-known restaurants, sampling delicious Canadian cuisine paired with spring releases from the Naramata Bench Wineries Association.

There is an impressive roster of critically acclaimed chefs and their restaurants participating at the event.  It includes Andrew Winfield of Calgary’s River Café, Nicholas Nutting of Tofino’s Wolf in the Fog (chosen by Enroute as Canada’s number one restaurant), and Jeremie Bastien of Montreal’s Restaurant Leméac.  From Toronto, both Chef Jesse Grasso of The Black Hoof – known for attracting movie starts to its nightly lineup – and Nick Liu of newly opened DaiLo will participate.  Two alumni from Food Network Canada’s Top Chef, Carl Heinrich (Toronto’s Richmond Station) and Connie DeSousa (Calgary’s Charcut Roast House), will also attend.  Executive Chef Ryan O’Flynn from the Westin Edmonton will recreate his winning dish from the 2015 Canadian Gold Medal Plates chef competition.

Local participants include Executive Chef Ned Bell from The Four Seasons’ YEW seafood + bar, Eric Pateman of Edible Canada and Bella Gelateria’s hand-made gelato, named the best in the world at the international gelato competition held in Florence, Italy.

The evening will include an exclusive Silent Wine Auction benefitting Vancouver Aquarium’s Ocean Wise™ sustainable seafood program, which will also receive partial proceeds from the evening.

Canadian Flavours Gala Event and Ticket Details

#CanadianFlavours
Thursday April 30th 2015
7:00 – 9:30 PM
Tickets: $125 available at http://eat-vancouver.com/canadian-flavours-gala/
Includes a complimentary ticket to EAT! Vancouver at BC Place, May 1- 3

Terminal City Club
837 West Hastings Street, Vancouver

Participating Restaurants:

Charcut Roast House and River Café (Calgary); The Westin Edmonton (Edmonton); Leméac (Montreal); Hillside Winery & Bistro, The Vanilla Pod and The Kitchen (Naramata); Wolf in the Fog (Tofino); The Black Hoof, DaiLo and Richmond Station (Toronto); Edible Canada, Vancouver Aquarium, YEW seafood + bar and Bella Gelateria (Vancouver); TIA Yukon (Whitehorse)

Participating Wineries:

Bench 1775 Winery, Black Widow Winery, D’Angelo Estate Winery, Deep Roots Winery, Elephant Island Orchard Wines, Hillside Winery, Howling Bluff Estate Wines, Kettle Valley Winery, La Frenz Winery, Lake Breeze Vineyards, Lang Vineyards, Misconduct Wine Co., Monster Vineyards, Moraine Winery, Perseus Winery, Poplar Grove Winery, Quidni Estate Winery, Red Rooster Winery, Serendipity Winery, Terravista Vineyards, Therapy Vineyards, Tightrope Winery, Upper Bench Winery, Van Westen Vineyards

About EAT! Vancouver Food + Cooking Festival

The 2015 EAT! Vancouver Food + Cooking Festival is a world class week-long food festival taking place throughout downtown Vancouver from April 26th to May 3rd, showcasing this city’s extraordinary culinary culture. Already the largest food festival in Canada, EAT! Vancouver, now in its 13th year includes hands-on workshops, collaborative chef dinners featuring top chefs from across Canada, Canadian Flavours Gala, a hospitality symposium, a pastry panel and EAT! Vancouver at BC Place, from May 1st to May 3rd .

www.eat-vancouver.com

https://www.facebook.com/eat.vancouver  https://twitter.com/eat_vancouver

About Naramata Bench Wineries Association:

A STORY IN EVERY BOTTLE
Along meandering country road with spectacular lake views is the Naramata Bench, one of Canada’s premiere wine regions and a top destination for wine enthusiasts. The renowned Naramata Bench Wineries are known for their quality wines, warm welcome, and exceptional wine events and experiences.

http://www.naramatabench.com

FB: naramatawines / T: @naramatawines

Contest

To get one entry you must retweet the following text using your Twitter account:

I want to win 2 free tickets to the Canadian Flavors Gala from @mywinepal Thx to @naramatawines @eat_vancouver #MWPcontest

You can also get an entry by posting a comment on this post, telling me which Naramata Bench winery you would like to try at this event.

Contest closes April 23, 2015 at noon.