As a first-time attendee of Bon Appetit, I appreciated the relaxed and hospitable ambiance of the food and wine show that took place on Tuesday evening. It was a stark contrast to the intensity of other endless-grazing events like Gold Medal Plates in which the chefs are competing to create the best dishes of the night.
Still, I couldn’t help but to rank some of my favourites bites of the night:
GOLD: It’s a tie between…
Les Fougeres‘ tandoori-spiced grain-fed mini chicken burger served on spring salad with fresh herbs and peanuts (left)
…and Social’s ox tongue Reuben on rye (right).
SILVER: Coconut Curry Shrimp on tropical slaw prepared by Chef Carlton of Island Spiced.
BRONZE: It’s a Matter of Cake “Xposed” Peanut Butter Crunch cake. Matthew Somer might be Ottawa’s next great cake baker.
Honourable mention goes to:
- The Smoque Shack for the delicious finger-licking good ribs and creating such an amusing display of people in cocktail attire wrestling with bones and faces full of sticky barbecue sauce.
- Brut Cantina Sociale for the guinea fowl pot pie that tasted like grandma made it. It was nice to put a face to Chef Jonathan Harris, who recently took the reins from Danny Mongeon.
- The handsome new Lunch truck! I enjoyed the open-faced porchetta sandwich featuring Bootleg porchetta, but it was the eye-catching new food truck (at left) — which owner Tim Van Dyke had to drive out to Ernst & Young Centre in first gear — that had everyone talking. That gorgeous hand-painted retro lettering looks good enough to eat.