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

 

Vancouver Chefs Dishes Festival

Chefs Signature Dishes Festival – Get Your Tickets

Vancouver Chefs Dishes Festival

Vancouver Chefs Dishes Festival

Wouldn’t you be honoured if a chef made a dish specially for you to try, not on their menu?   I would. This is the opportunity that Vancouver Foodster is offering to you through his Chef’s Signature Dishes Festival.  Below are the details of the event from Vancouver Foodster.  Bon Appetit!

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We are fortunate to live in a city which has one of the most exciting culinary scenes in North America, where chefs are passionate about the ingredients that they use, are committed to pushing boundaries and are creating dishes to excite the diners palate. I have created this Signature Dishes Festival to put the spotlight on these creative chefs and their restaurants who support their creativity and passion; said Richard Wolak, this festival is also a challenge featuring 15 participating Chefs and their Restaurants in Vancouver, Burnaby, Richmond and Langley where diners are invited to vote for their favourite dishes, this festival runs from September 6-30, 2013.

Chefs create a must try signature dish (this dish can-not be on the restaurant’s menu, it must be a new dish created by the chef) to enter in this Chefs Signature Dishes Festival. The Chefs creation can be simple to fancy, using unique and innovative ingredients, any type, as nutritious or indulgent as he/she wants, I told them to be creative and imaginative and to stay true to their type of cuisine or restaurant

Participating restaurants are featuring their Chefs who have created a new Signature Dish creation

These are just some of the creative Chefs and their Signature Dish creations in this festival:

PARTICIPATING CHEFS & RESTAURANTS

Chef Dan Craig

EBO Restaurant

Signature Appetizer Dish: Tasting of Dungeness Crab and Butternut Squash

Pink Salmon, Crab Chawanmushi and croquette, Butternut Squash Terrine.

Price: $14

Delta Burnaby Hotel and Conference Centre, 4331 Dominion Street, Burnaby

Tel: (604) 453-0788

Web:  http://www.eborestaurant.com/

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Chef Siriwan (Grace) Rerksuttisiridach

Simply Thai Restaurant

Signature Dish: Thai Steak

Prime sirloin steak strips on a bed of steamed broccoli topped with Simply Thai’s red curry sauce. Jasmine rice topped with bell peppers, fresh basil and lime leaves complete this plate.

Price: $25

1211 Hamilton St, Vancouver

Tel:(604) 642-0123

Web: http://www.simplythairestaurant.com/

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Chef Matt Repeto

The Bibo

Signature Dish: Risotto Mediterraneo

Delicate Risotto with the best B.C. seafood that join the Italian traditional with a taste of the sea.

Price: $24

Offered: Wednesday dinner, Thursday lunch and Thursday dinner

1835 W 4th Ave, Vancouver

Tel: 604-568-6177

Web:  http://www.thebibo.com

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Chef Brian Fowke

Kitsilano Daily Kitchen

Signature Dish: Brown Butter Broiled Organic Peace Country Beef Marrow ‘Provençal’ with fried green heirloom tomatoes, bourbon onion jam, butter potato gnocchi and chanterelle mushroom cornbread.

Price: Appetizer (without the gnocchi or cornbread): $18 OR Entrée: $32

Special Add-on: A complete bone’s pour of White American Bourbon to finish your meal – $12 (bring a bib)

Offered: Dinner nightly (starting Sept 7)

1809 W 1st Ave, Vancouver

Tel: (604) 569-2741

Web: http://www.kitsdaily.com/

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The full list of Chefs and their Dishes creations with details including the participating restaurants are listed here
http://vancouverfoodster.com/2013/09/06/vancouver-chefs-dishes-festival/

How people can Vote for their favourite Signature Dish Creations?

Once people have ordered and tried the Signature Dish Creations at the participating restaurants, they can vote on their mobile phones or ipads from their table in the restaurants or later in the day. People can cast their vote once a day, so if they are visiting the other participating restaurants daily or during the festival they can vote for their other favourites as well.

You are invited to try these signature dish creations at the participating restaurants, keeping in mind this criteria – originality, creativity, uniqueness, traditional, non-traditional, price, value and most importantly taste.  You are then encouraged to VOTE for their favourite Dish creations at http://vancouverfoodster.com/chefs-dishes-festival/

We will announce the winning Chefs and their Dish Creations on October 1, 2013.