Tag Archives: lime

Theo Chef Sessions limited edition confections

The idea of limited edition is kind of like eating seasonally. Something that’s limited edition is less likely to be taken for granted, though you run the risk of turning it into something precious. Or, worse, a marketing scheme.

Thankfully, in the case of limited edition things that are actually kick-ass and that, when they become available you need to snap one up immediately, there’s the Theo Chef Sessions limited edition confection collection. (Say that five times fast.) Featuring collaborations with some of the top chefs from Seattle, Portland and San Francisco, this might be the only opportunity you’ll have to try things like carrot caramel, pine resin ganache or candied beet pate de fruit.

Theo Chef Sessions limited edition confections

Standouts in the collection were the Chris Cosentino (Incanto) agro dolce brittle, a crispy crunchy brittle with pine nuts, capers and currants. Your brain expects sweet and it gets salty and savoury. I wanted more of the Maria Hines (Tilth) tamarind lime chili caramel, with its juicy, complex flavour profile. And, featuring the most traditional flavours of the bunch, the creation from Jerry Traumfeld (Poppy) didn’t disappoint with the huckleberry pate de fruit and cinnamon basil white ganache.

This limited edition (whee!) collection is only available for Valentine’s Day, so get ’em while you can.

Disclosure: The lovely team at Theo Chocolate sent me a box of these, gratis.

Green tangerine, where have you been all my life?

A quick Google search of “green tangerine” turns up a scrapbooking store, a spa, and a whole bunch of media companies. I just want to know where to get the damn things so I can try to reverse engineer Soma Chocolatemaker‘s green Tangerine chocolate bar.

Of course, that’s silly. I don’t have a grinder or a conch, or a reliable supply of cacao beans from Madagascar. But, in my dreams I have all those things – and granite countertops, too.

This microbatch chocolate bar is called Dark Fire, and rings in at 66% cocoa content. And it made me say wow. It tastes like 7 am on a beautiful spring day when you went to bed early the night before, and now you’re awake and ready to spring out of bed.

This chocolate is actually refreshing. There’s an immediate kick of bright, acidic lime that mellows to a darker orange-y flavour and just hints at the bitterness of lime zest. Thankfully, it never quite gets there. Chocolate from Madagascar is notorious for its full-on red fruitiness, but I don’t get that from this bar. I’m not sure if the red fruit is just not apparent (whether accidental or intentional) or if it’s just masked by the strong citrus flavours.

I don’t really care, actually. I just want to have another piece.

Jax Fish House

If you’ve been following Top Chef, you know that Hosea Rosenberg is the season 5 winner. His restaurant, Jax Fish House, is conveniently located in Boulder, where I spent a week post-conference. Jax offers a wicked happy hour from 4-6 pm that features $4 martinis, $3 tapas and $1 oysters, so I figured I’d take advantage of that.

The tapas were overwhelmingly…underwhelming. The polenta is nice and creamy and smothered in some kind of cream sauce, the house-cured (Atlantic) salmon is nice enough, and the braised lamb is passable. The tuna potstickers were rather disappointing, consisting of cold, under-seasoned tuna in crunchy, dried-out wonton wrappers.

Having said that, I can’t complain about $1 oysters. They come freshly shucked on a bed of shaved ice (bonus points for presentation), with horseradish, lemon and a shallot vinaigrette. The happy hour oyster rotates, so that day it was Apalochicola oysters from Florida.

And, I really can’t complain about the selection of infused vodkas, which includes strawberry, raspberry, coffee, horseradish, chili, and a few more. The fruity ones are nice in an adult lemonade, while the savoury ones are better suited to a Bloody Mary.

And the key lime pie is absolutely kick-ass. It’s creamy, perfectly smooth, and scandalously tart. The graham cracker crust tastes of butter, brown sugar and honey, and has just a hint of something crunchy. The contrast of creamy and crunchy, sweet and tart is delightful.

Too bad the happy hour tapas aren’t up to the same standards. I hope that the regular menu delivers something more worthy of a Top Chef.

Jax Fish House (Boulder)
928 Pearl Street
Boulder, CO
(303) 444-1811
Jax Fish House on Urbanspoon

Voya + Dior = fabulous

It was one of those typically Vancouver Saturday nights. It was raining, and I was feeling indecisive. Thank goodness for decisive friends who call and say, “You. Me. Voya.”

My response: “Can I wear my vintage Dior pumps?”

An hour later, Dior pumps in tow, we were comfortably seated at the end of a gorgeous bar in a gorgeous room full of gorgeous people. You could have told me we were at a hotel bar in Chicago, and I would have believed you. Not New York, not Seattle. Chicago.

The drinks menu is an honest cocktail menu. Ask Simon, the delightful bartender, about the history of a drink and he’ll tell you. Laurie kept us sated with homemade breadsticks (one batch was cheesy, the other anise-y) all night. Service hits that perfect mixture of friendly and chatty, without being intrusive.

I started the evening off with an Amaro Rossi, a lovely mixture of Hendrick’s gin, campari, guignolet d’angers (a cherry liqueur), and lime juice. They throw in egg white, shake the whole thing up, and serve it in an frosty cold glass. It’s cold, it’s foamy, and it’s pink. What more can a girl ask for while wearing vintage Dior?

Voya (in the Loden Hotel)
1177 Melville Street
Vancouver, BC
(604) 639-8692

Three cheers for brunch!

I love brunch. Actually, I love breakfast but I’m rarely able to enjoy breakfast. And on the weekends, I love to sleep in – which means that breakfast becomes brunch.

Anyway, I’m having my two oldest friends over for brunch today. By oldest, I mean that I’ve known one girl my entire life, and the other since I was eight. We don’t see each other nearly often enough these days, so I’m looking forward to seeing them.

I’m making French toast with boozy bananas (dark rum or orange liqueur? I can’t decide) and honey-glazed bacon. We’ll finish with lime-ginger sorbet, and wash everything down with mimosas.

The combination of good friends, food and stories – it’s going to be fabulous.

Dine Out Vancouver: YEW’s desserts don’t disappoint

I’m thoroughly impressed by YEW. They thought of all the details, and it really makes all the difference. Our server had exceptional product knowledge, the plates (the actual, physical plates) were interesting, and the plating (how the food was presented) was thoughtful and beautiful.

But best of all? Dessert. Was. Great.

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Jerk this, mon.

One of my favourite memories of New York was when Nrinder, my lovely host, took me to a hole-in-the-wall Caribbean restaurant called Taste of the Islands. I don’t have a hope in hell of finding it again, much less telling you where it is, but I know that it’s within a few blocks of the Brooklyn Botanic Garden, there’s no sign outside, and I probably would have walked right by it had Nrinder not gone inside.

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