Wednesday, 19 September 2007

River Café

Prince's Island Park, Calgary
The River Café in Prince's Island Park is considered one of the best restaurants in Calgary, so when a good friend suggested a celebratory lunch there I was quick to agree. The restaurant is in a beautiful location - Princes' Island in the Bow River, just a short walk from downtown Calgary. With the autumn trees in full colour it's the perfect location. And the food? Spectacular!

We started by sharing the Fish and Game Platter - Native Candied Trout, Wild Boar Rillettes, Salt Cured Bison, Pork & Game Terrine, Smoked Rainbow Trout, Grilled Apple Turnip Relish
Red Onion Marmalade, Brassica Mustard & House Made Crackers. The rillettes were amazing - a little odd to look at , but delicious.

We both chose fish mains - I enjoyed the salmon special served with seafood risotto and grilled vegetables. The risotto was particularly good, creamy and full of clams and mussels. My friend chose the Pikerel, also very good.

For dessert (yes, we managed to cram in the ultimate indulgence), we both tried the roasted plum and ginger crème brûlée. A gorgeous contrast of the sweet creamy custard with tart roasted plums.

At $75/each for lunch, the River Café is not going to be a frequent indulgence, at least not for me. But for a special occasion, this restaurant delivers amazing food and impeccable service - well worth the splurge.

Sunday, 16 September 2007

Out of Town Eats

Right now I'm packing for vacation, so with places other than Calgary on my mind, I thought I might mention a few out of town places I've enjoyed recently.

New York City

Eight Mile Creek - They have beer from home, emu carpaccio and kangaroo. What more can I say? The upstairs dining room is small and cosy, with a lively bar downstairs. Well worth the visit.

L'Ecole - The restaurant of the French Culinary Institute, this is beautiful food at a down to earth price. The menu has 5 courses, most with a choice of 2 dishes, and matched wines for a little extra. You need a reservation - make it online or by phone.


Bin 941 Tapas Parlour - A tiny, busy little place, expect a long wait unless you arrive really early. Tiny portions of exquisitely presented food, extensive wine list, and delicious desserts.

Fiddlehead Joe's - A lovely waterside restaurant with a heated patio for outdoor dining. The food was excellent, service was good, and watching the boats in the sunset was magical.


Bison Mountain Bistro - Canadian food in a famous mountain village. The menu features ingredients from all over Canada, including wild salmon, bison, scallops and lamb. The Lavender Smore for desert was fantastic!