A couple years back, before OurFaves had a public face, Eric Bernhard was here, arranging data, racing desk chairs, and tempting us all with a rotating assortment of sinful snacks as we worked all hours toward public launch. But Eric had a calling, and that calling was cuisine. Back in the winter of 2006, Eric left OurFaves and hit the road for Ottawa – destination: the illustrious Cordon Bleu cooking school.
We were sad to see him go, but as we toasted goodbye over tasty tapas, we pinky swore there’d at least be a dinner party to die for, once Eric was a true-blue (Bleu) chef.
Well, Eric’s back in town, with a CV boasting experiences such as cooking for Prime Minister Harper, and several other political notables, as well as flexing his culilnary muscle alongside some of Canada’s top chefs (Canoe anyone?). And last week, our taste buds delighted in the coming of that long-awaited dinner party. Eric amazed us with a menu crafted almost entirely out of local food offerings, from fave purveyors of quality edibles, and featuring some of our team’s own favourite flavours, selected in advance.
On the card? :
Black Hummus - made with black garbanzos! Which we ate with brown butter and homemade crostini...
and some delicious mimolette cheese - a fave of the chef
Then, a pear and parsnip soup with toasted corn nuts.
And next, a roasted red pepper goat cheese souffle quiche.
Donald samples the aroma of the squid ink pasta Eric had made fresh at St. Lawrence market. It was the delicious underpinning of...
this delectable concoction: sweetbreads, miso black cod, squid ink spaghetti, merlot gastrique, with Chinese 5-spice pecans
This dish made us very very happy. Oooohhh, they all did. This is just about when we started slipping into food coma territory. But we couldn't give up... there was more!
Like this amazing lamb dish, in progress in the kitchen.
Eric even made his own spicy formed lamb meat "sausages", from the same organic Ontario lamb shank, and wrapped them in phyllo. This guy is good people.
The finished product: American lamb shank, Moroccan lamb sausage in phyllo, red and white quinoa, red pepper-cilantro salad, mint oil, and crystallized ginger
Yay! Eric sits down for a minute! Here he is with Candice. Thanks Eric! Have some wine! We love you!
And, as a spectacular dessert offering: honey crème brule, peach, raspberry, and a crisp little plantain chip. Look at you Eric - all those levels! Those textures! Even though we have been eating for 3.5 hours straight at this point, it still hasn't worn off - pure profesh! Eric's a chef!
And this, and the amazing meal, we celebrate with a little gift giving. 6 courses of elegant eats is something! Thanks Eric!