Last week I shared my top 12 most memorable meal of 2012, starting with the first 6 which took place January-June. Here are the remaining 6.
6. July 2012, Lake Brereton
This meal was a feast made up of the usual cabin favourites: barbecued steak, potatoes, mushroom, asparagus, corn fresh greens salad and garlic toast. What made it so special was that my closest friends and I rented a cabin at Lake Brereton for the weekend, a rare weekend full of tranquility, but best of all two full days spent together. The meal was timed perfectly and we ate in the sunroom and watched the sunset over Lake Brereton together. We finished it off with a homemade (by moi) rhubarb strawberry crisp.
5. September 24, 2012, Corrientes, Winnipeg
In September, I was stumped over where to take Mitch for his birthday. Fortunately I had just discovered the new Argentine pizza place Corrientes in the Exchange District with a friend so that’s where I took him. I had a hunch he’d love it and he did. Its intimate South-American feel won him over instantly. The intimate, dimly-lit restaurant playing the sounds of Kevin Johansen, an Argentine guitarist had us feeling like we were at an Argentine pizzeria in no time. The menu consists of pizza and empanadas. We had the Manitoba pizza loaded with pesto, bacon, pickerel, goat cheese, arugula, sun dried tomatoes along with a couple of empanada (carne for Mitch and the four cheese one for myself). Although those are two of my favourite foods, I don’t often eat them together. A bottle of Argentine torrontes made for a very special evening. We ended the evening sipping coffees on the couch in the small library at the back of the restaurant. Just one of those perfect nights.
(p.s. The owner of Corrientes and Hermano’s is opening up Carnaval, a Brazilian BBQ restaurant in the east Exchange District that will open in January 2013. Something I’m very much looking forward to!)
4. September 20, 2012, my bridal shower
My bridal shower was a total surprise, in more ways than one. I showed up and was surprised to have all the important ladies in my life all in one place, including my maid of honour Laura who had flown in to surprise me from Toronto. The food and decor was amazing and all tied into my wedding theme. Coral and turquoise and latin food was plentiful. I had a few people comment it was the best shower food they’ve ever had. Cucumber sandwiches are not my style and my bridal party did an excellent job of truly representing me int he planning of it. A beautiful selection of mexican wedding cookies and dainties from my mother-in-law and her sisters such as my favourite butter tarts, plus a cake made by the Kildonan East Collegiate pastry students pleased my sweet tooth. I also heard there was some potent sangria made by my sister that went so fast I didn’t get a sip!
3. October 2012, home made chorizo tacos
I heard about Whiteshell Dairy Foods, a new cheese maker, had opened its doors in Winnipeg and although not available in store yet, it was selling cheese from it’s location in the North End. We set out to buy some queso fresco but because it was a Saturday it was closed. So, we went looking to El Izalco, a latin american store on Sargent. Thew owner, Esperanza, a friendly little lady chatted us up. Turns out she knew my mom and told me about how my dad used to come in to buy tamales de elote for her all the time. I was touched she remembered such a fact. We bought some freshly made pupusas and her home made chorizo. After visiting De Luca’s and Sobey’s we finally got a hold of queso fresco and made the best home made tacos we have ever made. The fact it took all day and four local grocers to find the ingredients made it even more delightful.
2. October 2012, Granville Island, British Columbia
If you’ve been, you know what an experience the market at Granville Island can be. I made the mistake of going hungry and I wanted everything! Unfortunately, it was also before heading to the airport so buying everything was out of the question. Fresh fruits and vegetables, seafood, pasta, honey, jam, syrups, baked goods, chocolates, there’s truly something for everyone there. I enjoyed a few items and bought some smoked salmon and some home made granola clusters to bring home. It was one of those days where I wandered around for hours all alone and i enjoyed it thoroughly.
1. December 25, 2012, Christmas.
Christmas is always a memorable meal, but this one was really special to me. My fiancee Mitch’s sister Nic and her husband Garrett hosted it at their house in St.Andrews. It included Garrett’s parents, Mitch’s mother Viv and this year my family. Since we’re all going to eb related and spending time in mexico very soon, it was a good time for everyone to chat and get to know everyone. A few cultures were represented in the food, we had turkey with all the trimmings, plus cabbage rolls, tourtiere, and tamales! It was enough to feed double the amount of people there but most importantly it was a lovely evening that brought three families together.