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Posts posted by shelora

  1. My girlfriend and I are probably going to Zarela this weekend, and on their website menu, there's a note that says "We are happy to prepare braised chicken in a mole sauce for the aficionados."  Is this a polite way of saying "We'll do this if you're afraid of everything else" or are they trying to say "This is what you REALLY want to ask for"? 

    That is so weird. It suggests the rest of the food is not for the aficionado.

    Does she request that you order in advance?

  2. ....... and a very European communal bathroom.

    What does that entail?

    A long sleek bathroom with a centre stainless steel sink. The men's and women's rooms are separated; just a unisex big sink. I've seen a number of these in Barcelona.


    Thanks. They have one of those at the Canoe. In Victoria.

  3. Meat, Cheese, Wine. So Simple it is brilliant.

    Part of the excitement here is the simplicity.

    It has been a long time since this town has seen something so simple that there is lots of hype and excitement. Does that create unreal expectations : quite possibly. It will settle down soon enough and everybody will get their legs under them.

    There is no kitchen or bar per se. No Chef or kitchen brigade. I saw my server assist with every aspect of my choices. This is somethime new. They have hired waiters and run it like a Deli with wine. It takes a bit of getting used to.

    Salt sounds like a spin-off of Batali's Bar Jamon in on Irving Place in New York City. We ate there last April, and I will definitely return when I'm back in September. http://www.newyorkmetro.com/listings/restaurant/bar-jamon/

    I was unaware that you could take the meat from Salumi across the border.

    Anyone else been to both?

    Glad that Vancouver is learning that the best form of a compliment is a spin-off. Bravo.

    Mr. Heather is a big fan of Batali and his father in Seattle (lamb proscuitto). he spent some time in NY and Seattle for inspiration. Nice to see a piece of NY in YCR.


    Stephen Bonner

    I was unaware that you could transport meat from Salumi across the border.

  4. Chanterelles are starting to appear on menus. A lovely saute of baby ones last night at Brasserie and at Rosemeade, a beautifully stuffed ravioli specimen.

    My question is, are chanterelles and other species of fungi indigenous to B.C. or did their wee spores get transported from elsewhere?


  5. There used to be a delightful tea room in Oak Bay called, I think, "The Blethering Place".  So English you would swear you were in the English countryside and pretty good food too!

    I'm sorry, but are you on drugs? So English, you would swear you were in the English countryside? Come on.

    Pretty good food? I invite you to take a walk around the corner where you can see the kitchen open to the street.

  6. Hello, I am looking for the top tea rooms in Victoria please? It can be a modern tea lounge or a classic afternoon tea shop. I am also looking for the oldest tea room in Victoria (The Empress has been serving tea for 100 years, is there anywhere older then that?

    I would appreciate your help! Thanks Cate

    You mean top tea rooms for tourists or a place that locals might go to?

    Are you sure about the 100 years of tea service at the Empress?

    Who are you gearing your survey to?

  7. My issue came in the mail yesterday and I must confess I was a wee bit offended by the claim that someone from T.O. introduced Victorians to polenta.
    "When we opened, seven years ago, customers didn't know what polenta was," says Jo Zambri, a Toronto native and co-owner (with her brother Peter) of Zambri's, a lively Italian restaurant in Victoria.

    But thank god we have someone from the Centre of the Universe to teach us about things like polenta!

    HE may not have invented it, but Peter Zambri freakin perfected it baby!!!!!!!


    I recall the first time I had Zambri's polenta and I simply had to speak to Peter about it. He commented that people don't cook it long enough. Sure enough through subsequent experiments, polenta needs long slow cooking and I don't think that most cooks know that - even the wizards at Thrifty's. :smile:

    Even though Jo mentioned that when they first opened people didn't know what polenta was, I'm sure they still get customers that ask that very same question.

    People aren't as smart as they look.

  8. The Savuer article made me re-read Jeffery Steingarten's essay on whether or not there is an actual PNW cuisine.  At the time (1990 or 95 - I think) - his conclusion was 'no'.  Great raw materials - but no real cuisine yet.

    Things have progressed over the last decade or so.  But the Saveur article is over-focused on sourcing rather than what is done with the ingredients.  And this where I think that VI dining experience is sold short.  One always reads about Sook Harbour House and their (extreme) dedication to VERY locally sourced goods.  But as I diner - I am less interested in food dogma and more intrested in good honest food period.

    The article left me thinking - wow, what great stuff - but where are all the places that I should go to eat it?

    Excellent point about the dogma part.

    But. Getting a sense that your not the kind of guy that needs to be told where to go, I think you should just fly, drive or take the ferry over here and find out for yourself. You've had enough gawl darn invitations. Jeez. :smile:

  9. ]

    I think that would depend if Shelora were driving! :laugh:

    Depending on how much you weigh, I can strap one of you on the back on my bike... oh, never mind.

    Unlike Vancouver, you can do a lot here on foot.

    However, what exactly would you like to do? Are your interests mostly food - what kind - wine, brews, art, coffee, what? How much time will you have?

    I trust you will be taking the first ferry over, which means you will arrive here around 10:30 am. from Port Angleles (PA, we call it). When does the last one go back that day?

    By the way, have you seen the new issue of Saveur yet? Wonderful teaser on Vancouver Island.

    And did I mention not to come Sunday or Monday?

    Hope to hear from you soon.

  10. A waste?  Au contraire Mr. Daddy-A. :biggrin:

    I could put together a great one day itinerary that revolves around downtown and the Saanich Peninsula.

    could we do that without a car? I'm thinking of leaving the car behind in Port Angeles, seems rather expensive to bring it over for just one or two days.

    Why not. I live downtown and get around quite well, partaking in many actiivities by foot or bicycle. In a day.

    What day of the week are you thinking because key places are closed Sunday and Monday over here.

  11. From there, take the ferry to Victoria / Vancouver Island

    A single day in Victoria is a bit of a waste IMO.  If you can't spend at least a couple days there I'd give it a miss.  If you do the 1-day visit, you'll see the Inner Harbour only, and that would give you the "touristy" look at Victoria only. 

    A waste? Au contraire Mr. Daddy-A. :biggrin:

    I could put together a great one day itinerary that revolves around downtown and the Saanich Peninsula.

  12. There's an awful lot of nay-saying going on in this thread.  I'm curious about what advice gulleters would have for the Dining section.  What are articles that you'd like to read and who ought to write them?  Let's offer some criticism they can use.  What articles or kinds of articles have revved your engine.  My bet is that the walls have ears.

    I'll start.  I've loved everything Matt and Ted Lee have written.  I'd like to see their byline far more often.

    I too love the continuing adventures of Matt and Ted. The other feature they had for a while which was great, were Mark Bittman's articles cooking with a chef, not just in New York but around the U.S. - gotta get him up here to do the same. They were most informative. And not just with celebrity chefs but with home cooks as well.

    I'd just like to see more of what they do - more explorations of an obscure recipe, a seasonal specialty, that sort of thing. That's what interests me. I also like the New York neighbourhood profiles.

    Another thought is - and it doesn't have that much to do with the Wednesday Times - but I think what we are lacking is a new food celebrity. A fresh voice. Some fresh blood.

  13. Potato Mountain and the Potato Range is in the Chilcotin (BC Central Interior) and is indeed home to "wild potatoes" or Claytonia Lanceolata.  You need a helicopter, horse or ATV to access the area (unless you want to do a multi day hike from Tatlyoko Lake) and all that for a marble sized white tuber that takes quite a bit of effort to dig up.  Most tourist go in the late spring to see them flowering (the eastern species are called spring beauties) along with other alpine flowers.  They were once an important food source for the Tsilhqot'in First Nation but know it would be rare for any of them under 50 to have even eaten them.  From what I have heard they are quite tasty but I have never put forth the effort or had the opportunity to try them.  Wild onions are much easier to gather.

    Thanks CC, Badiane and Stovetop for all your insights. Most appreciated.

    Having spent a week at a dude ranch in the Caribou/Chilcotin, stories about the wild mountain potato have me thoroughly intrigued. Some folks are still foraging and eating them. The amount of edible plants up there is incredible. As luck would have it Country Cook, it seemed to be wild onion season. There were vast fields of them everywhere we went on horseback. They pack an oniony wallop and slipped a few into my sandwich on a ridge at 4000 feet.

    Also made dessert with the soapalallie berries which were also in season.

    Will check out the web link Badiane, post haste.

    Thanks all.


  14. When they first started producing the separate food section on Wednesdays, it was just juicy with delicious information and I began to collect them.

    But as of late I have frequently noticed tired issues. I've stopped collecting them so rabidly. Where did the excitement go? Even Bittman seems bored.

    What gives NYT?

    That said, I still need to make my regular jaunt to the newstand and purchase a copy every Wednesday. It's a habit that always provides me with a bit of necessary culinary escapism - and escape from the confines of my computer - over a great cup of coffee or lunch at one of my favourite stops.

    Now we have the Sunday issue delivered to our doorstep where I can read the magazine or any other pertinent info on NY food culture. I thought last week's article on ice cream was very entertaining.

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