Sunday, October 21, 2007

Westcoast Feast at The Salmon House

The venerable North Shore institution The Salmon House on the Hill (with about as good a view as you can get from here, with food to match) along with its sister restaurants, had been advertising it's West Coast Feast 3-Course Dinner for $30 (an additional $25 for wine pairings) so Fumiyo and I decided to check it out. My meal began with an Alize Passion cocktail. I had such great luck with passion fruit in a cocktail at Tokyo City Hall recently, I thought I'd try it. Amazingly good. Even Fumiyo enjoyed it.

My appetiser, the Local Forest Mushroom Saute with porcini mushroom ravioli. The people next to us told us to order it. It was very earthy, very filling. Maybe too filling for my tiny appetite. A good red wine accompanied it but I didn't note its name.
Fumiyo suggested I get another cocktail so I ordered the house special, the Salmon House Crantini. I've had much better luck in Vancouver with cranberries as a cocktail ingredient than I have with the whole "martini universe." I've never had a cocktail between courses before and thank Fumiyo for the suggestion. The drink was light as well as tasty (Fumiyo also approved) and it gave the mushrooms time to digest before the prawns arrived.

When she wasnt sampling my cocktails, Fumiyo was enjoying her Cauliflower and Roquefort Soup with Smoked Salmon Foam. The bite I had tasted cheesy, like a really good French Onion Soup.
The main reason I wanted to try the West Coast Feast was to try this, Rack of Prawns with yuzu
Marinade, Pea Shoots and Lemon Risoto. I really enjoyed the smokiness of the prawns. It took awhile before I found the yuzu taste. Yuzu is the best thing that has ever come out of Japan and I've enjoyed it in many dishes and drinks (you also bathe in it for the holidays in Japan). I figured they must have marinaded the prawns for a long time. I felt I was in a forest of smoked trees and after much digging, found the buried treasure, the yuzu flavour. The pea shoots and lemony risotto were an admirable accompaniment and the wine pairing wasn't bad at all.
Fumiyo is seen here feasting on the Seared BC Salmon Chop, Honey Truffle Glaze and Micro Green Salad. The taste I had was excellent. Fumiyo said the simple grilled salmon she makes is better, for her tastes. As we were discussing the food I had in Japan, Fumiyo speculated it wasn't that the food I had was so bad, it's that my palate is so much more refined now than 4 years ago and what used to be good no longer meets my heightened standards. Maybe true, maybe not, but the Denny's hamburger I had this trip would kill a cockroach.
Lemon Cheesecake Tartlet, Blueberry Compote, plus pretty design. Pastry not so good. Desert wine was.
Fumiyo had the Vanilla and Roast Peach Custard, Plum Coulis, Arborio Rice. Too ricey, even for her. But all in all, a fine meal for the money.


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