Dine Out at Home in Vancouver – A Delicious Dinner

Spaghetti sauce with yellow and green bell peppers

Today’s Dine Out experience is at home, Chez Karl’s place. On today’s menu is:

  • Cow and Goat’s Milk Melange cheese
  • Spaghetti sauce with green and yellow bell peppers
  • Clementine oranges

The appetizer, the Melange cheese, comes from Trader Joe’s in Washington state.  If you have never heard of Trader Joe’s, it is an organic grocery store chain.  The one I went to was in Bellingham, WA.  This is a hard cheese, white, with no rind.  It has a bit of the sharpness that you can get from goat’s milk, but is still very mild. Low amount of salt.

To pair with this cheese and the main course, I opened a bottle of Portia Prima, Ribera del Duero, DOC, 2007, Spain.  I picked up this bottle at the Vancouver Playhouse Wine Festival last year.  It is made from the Tempranillo grape. Opening it and pouring it it in my glass with great anticipation.  It was opaque garnet.  Dark cherry, plum, leather, vanilla and some leafy aromas.  Full body with soft mouthfeel and low tannins.  Tobacco, cherries, plum, cassis and some vanilla, oak and leafiness.  There was some chocolate in the mid palate.  Long length with a peppery finish.  A very nice wine that has a good balance between fruit, tannins and acidity.  The Melange cheese just melted together with this wine.  It was an excellent appetizer pair.

Portia Prima DOC, Spain 2007

The spaghetti sauce was served on top of Trader Joe’s mixed cheese multi-coloured tortellini. The spaghetti sauce was full flavoured, but not spicy.  Made with ground beef, tomatoes, green and yellow bell peppers, long thin strips of onion, garlic and chopped celery and seasoned with marjoram and a bit of the Portia Prima wine. Marjoram  is related to oregano, but has a bit of a sweetness to it.  The richness of the spaghetti sauce tasted nice with the richness of the Portia Prima.

After a heavy main course, it is nice to finish it off with some fruit.  The clementines are from California. About the size of a golf ball but very sweet and without any seeds.  I’m satiated.  I hope you have a great dinner today too, whether it is at a Dine Out Vancouver restaurant or at home.  Cheers.

Dine Out Vancouver – Enjoying Wild Rice

Hot and sour soup

Well I went to my third Dine Out Vancouver restaurant today with friends.  This time we went to Wild Rice, which is located close to the west edge of Chinatown.  It’s a short 2 block walk from the Stadium skytrain station.  The food for all 3 courses were all great, both for me and the others.  What I ordered:

  • Hot and Sour Soup
  • House Roasted BBQ Pork, Baby Bok Choy, jasmine rice
  • Szechuan Chocolate Brownie

House Roasted BBQ Pork

To this I paired a glass of Rollingdale Pinot Noir, from West Okanagan.  The pinot noir has low tannins, light body, some violet aromas/flavours, and higher acidity, and thought it would pair nicely with the BBQ pork.

The hot and sour soup had just the right amount of heat for most people to handle.  I loved the slices of shitake mushrooms in the soup.  The House Roasted BBQ pork was tender and had a tasty sweet brown sauce.  This worked with the acidity of the Rollingdale Pinot Noir.  I wished it did have some crispy pork skin though. The Szechuan chocolate brownie was decadent, covered with a light chocolate sauce and crunchy ribbons of orange peels on top.  Enjoy with a coffee, or maybe port.

Szechuan Chocolate Brownie

I also was able to try some of the Salt and Pepper Tofu, Satay Sauce, Orange Braised Pemberton Beef, Drunken 5 treasure quinoa, and 5 Spice Carrot Cake with Ginger Icing. The panfried tofu with crushed chili flakes was accompanied by a peanut sauce mixed with some lemon grass.  A very tasty dish.  The Pemberton Beef came shredded, reminding me of pulled pork, but with a beefy flavour.  Very succulent.  The 5 Spice Carrot Cake was very gingery and tasted wonderful with the cream cheese icing.  I could have eaten a few plates of these carrot cakes.

I recommend coming to Wild Rice for Dineout Vancouver.  Enjoy!