C asked me last week if I was interested in the FishSauce dinner that happened on July 3rd. At first I was a bit hesitant at the ticket price… $125? But then after learning that all proceeds go to the Canadian Red Cross, I thought it was a great excuse to enjoy an evening while doing it for a great cause. The tickets actually sold out the day prior to the event so it was definitely high anticipated. It was being held at the Selkirk Grill/Gasoline Alley in Heritage Park. The event was put together in a very short time span – we were told that City Fish initiated the event with their fish donations and then the few interested chefs were gathered to plan.
The entire evening – food, labour, venue was generously donated by all the people and restaurants listed below. All the waitstaff were either actual servers or not whom volunteered their time for this event. Every single penny from the ticket price and funds raised on this night went straight to Red Cross for the flood relief, and you get a tax receipt for the ticket price. Wow! This has got to be the most delicious ‘donation’ I have ever made.
Details and kudos to the following:
All seafood was donated by City Fish
Live music by Joanna Borromeo
donated by Crush Imports
canaletto prosecco vino spumante brut
donated by Joie Farm
Joie Farm Noble Blend VQA 2012
Joie Farm Riesling VQA 2012
Joe Farm PTG VQA 2010
hand-rolled gnocchi, blue cheese veloute, smoked almonds
ahi tuna tartare, celery, orange aioli, marash pepper, duck fat potato chip
by Chef Cam Dobranski of Brasserie & Winebar Kensington
I only had a tasting of the tartare, but it was definitely a great amuse. Good size chunks of tuna in a light marinade over a delicious fried potato chip – in duck fat, nonetheless. That reminds me, it’s time to go visit the Brasserie again for their duck fat fries.
First Course – chilled coconut scallops, pad Thai spaghetti squash
by Chef Liana Robberecht of Calgary Petroleum Club
I love spaghetti squash – my mother in law makes it once in a while and we always ate it with fish sauce. This pad Thai version was a delight to eat – slightly sweet and tangy with a touch of spice. The scallops were nicely flavorful and cooled – they could totally pass for sashimi! The long, white thing – I thought it was a crab leg at first, is actually meringue. C and I had no idea and when she asked her neighbor how he knew, he said, just by tasting it. Lol!
Second Course – foie gras parfait, smoked maple glaze, shaved & compressed raw vegetables, charred brioche
by Chef Justin Leboe of Model Milk
This was definitely my favorite course of the night. The parfait was ultra creamy, very flavorful and rich – it has to be eaten with the brioche but since there was not enough C and I resorted to using the dinner buns. Hmmmmmm. The pistachio bits and beets provided great contrast to the soft parfait, and the maple glaze changed the flavors of the parfait to sweet and savoury. Omg I can’t stop thinking about it. I need to go make my reservations at MM now.
Third Course – prawn & tofu agnolotti, thai basil pesto, serrano pepper oil, gochugaru oil, parmesan
by Chef Roy Oh of Anju Restaurant
The first thing that hit me from this dish was the smell. It was absolutely tantalizing from the pesto. The second thing that hit me was the spiciness of the agnolotti – my goodness was that thing ever spicy! It must’ve been the gochugaru oil. However it was cooked perfectly to al dente. C said her prawn was deliciously crunchy but mine was slightly overcooked – it was a bit mushy on the outside but still slightly crunchy in the inside. My favorite of this dish was definitely the fried tofu medallions.
Fourth Course – butter poached lobster, beef tenderloin, pomme puree, rainbow carrots, black truffle jus
by Chef Jan Hansen of Heritage Park Historical Village
I was really looking forward to this dish and it was just divine. Tender beef tenderloin that was cooked to a medium, the black truffle jus was a perfect pairing. The lobster was slightly overcooked in some parts – some areas were mushy while others were not but it was deliciously buttery. The pomme puree though, wow, it was ultra creamy and sinfully buttery. I’ll never look at mashed potatoes the same way again!
Fifth Course – deconstructed creme brulee, hibiscus meringue, sugar shards
by Chef Duncan Ly of Hotel Arts
Creme brulee is more hubby’s thing than mine, but I’ve definitely never had it deconstructed before. The creme was very nicely flavored with vanilla bean (love seeing the black dots) and my favorite was definitely the meringue. I loved the sweetness of it yet it didn’t taste like just white sugar. I’ll take a pound of that to go, please! The sugar shards were nicely crunchy and I like them better this way over the torched, harden sugar on regular creme brulee. C is not a dessert person so I got to enjoy her portion as well.
What a great event put together by a very passionate group. This was a very enjoyable evening and I got to meet some great people like Mark and Andrew of Bon Vida. The food was well thought out and well put together and absolutely delicious. Thanks to all the hard working people that made this happen! I wish there was a little meet and greet at the end, but since I had to leave early I don’t know if that happened. Oh well, I’m sure there will be future opportunities for that!