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Everything posted by jamiemaw

  1. Most excellent, Abra. And just so you know, my tribe dances to a different drummer too. Dinner smells Phnomenal! J.
  2. Eegads, Megan - no Blumarine, no La Perla? I've certainly noticed one thing recently: these days restaurants are looking more and more Prada and way less Lada. At some, I'm rather shocked that they'll let me in. And then, on the Groucho maxim, I'm rather disappointed that they did. I won't soon forget a lunch at the late and lamentable Le Cirque 2000. It had recently opened. We sat down next to some X-Ray ladies-who-lunch. Eva looked around the room and said, "These chairs will have to go." "Why?" I asked. "The backs are too high and the Nan Kempers and Pat Buckleys can't see each other." "Here's looking at you," I said, raising my glass of hysterically over-priced Bolly. No sooner had we returned to Vancouver than Florence Fabricant or someone else at the Times wrote a short piece on the replacement of the chairs at Le Cirque. Blame Joe Baum. He kind of invented this dining as spectacle thing in 1957 with the Forum of The 12 Caesars, even if it's been going on since long before the real Romans. Of course even they endeavoured to dine with people in their own tax bracket. Still aspirating, J.
  3. Cunning linguist aside, Sandy, I had absolutely no idea you were a pilot. Trainee or instructor? One reason I was prompted to post this topic was Frank Bruni's introduction to a scathing (mile wide and inch deep) review of Morimoto's new Manhattan outpost today in the Times: "It's a stunning piece of work: a sparkly wonderland for glittery people, who always get the word and always hop onboard. They drink their bright cocktails, fiddle with their chopsticks, survey their compatriots and tap-tap into their cellphones and other devices, presumably checking on the whereabouts of less fortunate friends, perhaps informing them that the place to be is right here, right now. It's Morimoto's moment." This in turn reminded me of a local food columnist's review of a popular Italian restaurant here a few years ago. In it, she spoke of the lovely giardino, the pleasant, mainly Tuscan food, and the glittery crowd, which - she also allowed - she couldn't stand. And then she took a firmer stand, stating quite chastely that she would prefer not to dine around this 'type'. Hmm, I was given to wonder, first about the crowd: Excess cash flow chasing social validation? Or merely dinner? Well, both. One thing that a restaurateur can't entirely control is who shows up: the socially-aspirant broker, the moth-eaten food critic, or even the increasingly rare sighting of Genus Wing-Tipped Tourista Winnebraskas. Each has his or her own pupose for being there though. Mainly, I strongly suspect they are looking for people who look just like them. Or slightly more so. Tribally yours, J.
  4. We buy things because they reflect who we are, or even whom we aspire to be. The same might be said to be true of our dining and food procurement choices. Much of this is subconcious of course. In 500 words or less, how do your dining or food shopping choices reflect you - or your aspirations? Come clean now . . .
  5. Mike, try keeping a Microplane in the shower so those baby corns don't grow on you.
  6. Although we spent several bucolic August weeks on Bermuda with only pleasant sailing zephyrs, in this epoch of global warming I'd suggest that you consult your local weather professional or this website.
  7. Nifty segue, Maggie, as the balance of the menu might well answer your question about our forebears, and as you know there are quite a few bears here: Wild Queen Charlotte Salmon with Dungeness Crab and Young Leeks Winchester Pinot Noir 2003 Mission Hill SLC Chardonnay 2004 Boneless Saddle of Lamb with Root Vegetables and Salsa Verde Poplar Grove Benchmark Merlot 2002 Osoyoos Larose Le Grand Vin 2003 Braised Kobe Beef Short Ribs with Pemberton Valley Crosnes, Organic Beans, and Purple Sunchokes Laughing Stock Portfolio 2003 Burrowing Owl Cabernet Sauvignon 2002 Weiss Chocolate Tasting > Trio of Chocolate Mousse, Cherry Granité, and Spicy Hot Chocolate Jackson Triggs Reserve Sparkling Icewine 2001 Lemon-Tamarind Frozen Soufflé with Strawberry Sorbet, Toasted Meringue, and Caramel Water Hainle Riesling Icewine 25th Anniversary 2003 Note that even one of the wines is a co-venture. As for the chefs, two are native-born Canadian, two are Euro-Canadian (one English, one German) and one is Japanese-Canadian. All of their children are Canadian-Canadian, as is the cuisine that they prepare each night.
  8. I'm rather fond of what George Lang had to say on the subject: 'There should be a special phrase for getting credit for something you didn't do and at the same time attributing your ideas to someone else.' Mind you, he is a deeply truffled man.
  9. Drawing together the theme of this thread, Steven's Stones analogy, and John's concept for a Tribute Restaurant means it could only be named one thing.
  10. No, it's not bad to be an Innie, just interesting I think Maggie. Older culinary cultures may slow in their evolution just as immigration (or the need to invent) slows, or as the 'two solitudes' that now exist in some European cultures present challenges for shared diets. I'm interested in the assimilation of people and their cuisines, and how the interweaving of culinary DNA reflects who we are (and probably who we aspire to be) as an entire culture. Canada is called a 'Vertical Mosaic' (as opposed to a 'Melting Pot') because, while celebrating assimilation and commonality, it also celebrates differences. So do its cuisines - they stand alone, but certain nuances, ingredients and techniques find their way onto regionally-driven menus. Here's a very current example - to be found in some of the dishes on the trial menu that a group of Vancouver chefs will be presenting at Jas. Beard House in late April. Note the BC ingredients but the converged preps and assimilated nomenclature: hors d'oeuvres Tai Naruto Maki BC Snapper Wrapped in Egg Crêpes with Seaweed Kashiwa Tsutsumi Wild British Columbia Salmon Sushi with Marinated Kelp and Kashiwa Leaves Chidori Ebi Kimizushi Sushi Rice and Egg Yolk with Poached Prawns Wild Goose Winery Gewürztraminer 2004 _____________________________ Green Sea Urchin with Ponzu Sauce and Kusshi Oysters with Pickled Vegetables and Horseradish Foam Black Hills Estate Winery Alibi 2003 Gray Monk Odyssey Pinot Gris 2004 . . . the list goes on . . . Certain areas of Spain may be the exception that proves the rule that Old World culinary cultures may now evolve with less velocity than those of the New World; they have become more codified. Of course, that was not always the case. Just ask a tomato.
  11. I'm not sure that this necessarily follows the rest of your statement. I would think that if a chef was able to copy 17 or so different styles, do them well and accurately attribute them in a homage fashion, that in itself might be quite an original and worthwhile feat. ← Had that been the point, John, I'd give it a strong perhaps. Greatest Hits menus are becoming as commonplace as ubiquity itself - but they are easy to dance to. ← The intriguing thing would be the ability to copy well 17 disparate styles at the same time ← I don't disagree, John. In fact I think you're on to something. After all, we're busy, travel is expensive and the original might not always be close at hand, per se. On a lighter note, Rich Little is a Great Canadian.
  12. I'm not sure that this necessarily follows the rest of your statement. I would think that if a chef was able to copy 17 or so different styles, do them well and accurately attribute them in a homage fashion, that in itself might be quite an original and worthwhile feat. ← Had that been the point, John, I'd give it a strong perhaps. Greatest Hits menus are becoming as commonplace as ubiquity itself - but they are easy to dance to.
  13. (emphasis added) ← Your pop was exactly right. The DNA Blueprint: Clifford Irving meets Elmyr de Hory meets Winona Rider. While the ubiquity of crabcakes and wings, chili squid and (ouch!) short-ribs goes unremarked, (for all the usual reasons) it's always the forgery of elitist or aspirational art that attracts attention. EGullet has just become the defacto international food copyright tribunal. Even if the perp does attribute, after all, any homage menu -- say, containing 17 'in the style ofs' -- might look rather foolish: The prefixes would destroy the prix fixe. The world became much smaller today.
  14. I'm thinking it's probably not Kum Koon.
  15. Sandy, I absolutely agree with you about immigration diversifying the culinary gene pool. In our country, the two primary beneficiaries of large-scale immigration over the past two decades have been Vancouver and Toronto. Vancouver now has an Asian-Canadian population verging on 40%. But then there's assimilation of immigrants, and also assimilation of cuisines - quite organically they begin to merge. I'd be interested to know how long you think "that degree of cosmopolitanism" (with apologies to Helen Gurley Brown ) will likely last in your restaurant culture before it begins to fade away, or change, perhaps because the kids want to work for ligne roset and FuTure Paradise. Do you think some of those cuisines will morph or merge into something more western, or continue to be distinctive and 'authentic'? Do local ingredients (especially the primary proteins) inculcate themselves and change the dish? I'm also interested in aspirational dining, and how some immigrant-nationals in the second generation deliberately step out of their mother cuisine to eat westernized food in what they consider 'cooler' precincts. Could this generational transition be evidence of the Outie looking in? What impacts of the foregoing do you see in Philly?
  16. Thank you for philosophic alignment of food and architecture. I agree with you: Build it local and they will come.
  17. But it has a 5 star rating! ← Thank you for partially restoring my reputation around here, Jasmine. I believe the bar we were in was five-starred too. ← And now back to Biker TV with your host Heather Ireland.
  18. It's a dead cinch. Find a project that everyone can invest in - it's outlined upthread on Post #20. Be inclusive but set high standards, at both the CFD and FD levels. Exert leadership. Make the calls.
  19. Thanks for that, kalypso - life beyond George's at the Cove, where I'll freely admit I've done most of my SD navel-gazing.
  20. jamiemaw


    Fresh wasabi root is quite widely avaialble in Vancouver's better Japanese restaurants - of which there are quite a few. Often the chef will treat you if it's clear you're serious and are going to stay a while. Another covert signal is to point at a top shelf chilled sake and offer him a pipe. Still another ploy is to say that you are an aquaintance of über-chef Neil Wyles. Wasabi ranching is being researched at the University of BC farms, and in a contained environment in Agassiz, where coho waste is recycled as fertilizer. I think that it would make a snappy toothpaste flavour.
  21. At the luxe end of the scale, The Elbow Beach Hotel in Paget Parish is very plush and on a gorgeous piece of sand. The same holds true for the Fairmont Southampton. Fairmont also have a property in Hamilton. Michael Douglas's family has restored Ariel. This last link will take you into Fodor's Bermuda, which mentions many other options at all budget levels. We looked in on Oxford House and The Salt Kettle, both of which offered trim and charming accomodation and are nearby Hamilton. But watch out for false economy. With no rental cars, staying any distance from the beach can mean hot delays while waiting for taxis, which are not cheap. A visit to the Royal Naval Dockyard is a worthy morning's excursion - try lunch at the Frog and Onion. Dining can be tricky on Bermuda - you also pay to get close to the ocean, especially in the evening, and experience quickly taught us that the value and fun was to be found in more casual venues, such as The Black Horse Tavern in St. George's - but dine outside. The Swizzle Inn and The Beach are quality drinking spots, if my notes can be trusted. A little more dressed up is The Seahorse Grill. In Hamilton, there are a number of ubiquitous Italian restaurants where you can, with complete confidence, wander from one to the next with the same menu in hand. In August, the humidity is fierce, so stay close to the water, book a hammock or hammock a book, or better yet, immerse yourself completely in the pea soup sea.
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