At Culinaire, they are out in force, trying to entice you into their restaurant....all in one bite.
Bring it on.
This is in no way an exhaustive (or National Geographic photography level) example of what was served at the Crystal Gardens tonight - but it was some of the bites that I thought were extra-tasty.
Housemate lamb sausage with mango dressing wrapped in naan bread.....from the Butchart Gardens, yes, the Butchart Gardens! Not my first thought for a dinner destination (when I'm doing the mental "drive-around" Victoria thinking of places to go) - this bite was really great - sausage was flavourful and nicely spiced.
And then the next bite....
Savoury and sweet donut from Aura (ok, a special place in my heart right now, because of the outstanding dinner consumed there recently). The savoury side was crusted with seasame seeds and topped with a touch of pulled pork and the sweet side was dusted with a cherry sugar. Yummy.
|Aura - savoury/sweet donuts|
The Elvis - grilled banana, peanut butter and bacon sandwich from Pig. Salty, sweet and sticky goodness. The King can't be wrong.
|Pig BBQ Joint - the Elvis|
Pork and a beer - with a twist - Phillips rootbeer and pulled-pork bites (formed into balls, covered in panko and fried). I love (read: LOVE) the Phillip's sodas - Bard & Banker was pouring the rootbeer (but try the ginger-ale too - it puts the ginger in, well, ginger-ale).
|Bard & Banker - Phillips rootbeer & pork bite|
Probably the award for the best plating/presentation - spring Easter eggs from the Fairmont. perfectly capped eggs with hardened sugar seats formed around them, filled with mushroom risotto and topped with duck confit. I should mention at this point that close to 1,000 tickets are sold to Culinaire - so that's a lot of egg-beheading.
|Fairmont Empress - mushroom risotto & duck confit|
Shine Cafe - fresh off their "You Gotta Eat Here" visit - prepared Scottish Eggs Benedict - potato scone, blood pudding, maple bacon, egg, covered in whiskey hollandaise. And it wasn't just a 'hint' of whiskey.
|Shine Cafe - Scottish benny|
|Fruition Paletas - chocolate dipped salted caramel|
And so much more - as my Culinaire "date" said so perfectly.....nothing bad passed our lips.
I will be waiting with baited breath for the 2014 tickets to go on sale.