Recap: Swine & Dine at The Harvest Room
Last week Passion for Pork capped off the 2015 Swine & Dine Edmonton dining series with a spectacular five-course meal created by Chef Serge Jost of the Fairmont Hotel Macdonald. The historic hotel is particularly enchanting during the holiday season, with guests entering the lobby to a sky high Christmas tree and hotel replica gingerbread house; it was a beautiful location to host a holiday Swine & Dine.
While some Swine and Dines have a starting time for all diners, this time guests were invited to make a reservation in The Harvest Room anytime during regular dinner service. The result was a restaurant filled with patrons excited experience a culinary adventure incorporating Alberta pork from appetizer to dessert. The price- and incredible $49 a person included a wine or beer pairing option for $19.
Chef Jost and his culinary team treated Swine & Diners to a visually enticing meal which highlighted a local producer who was in attendance last week.
I had the pleasure of meeting Malorie Aube of Country Accent who raises Mangalista pigs at the family’s farm in Bawlf, Albert. Often called the Kobe beef of pork, the heritage breed has strikingly long hair and fatty, marbled meat which is ideal for curing.
For the amuse bouche we were treated to a pulled pork arancini. The fried risotto ball was complimented with caramelized onion jam and a chipotle raspberry glaze.
For the soup, guests were delivered a bowl with braised pork & white bean ravioli, enokitake mushrooms, chili oil; the pork consommé was poured table side.
As the gluten free girl at the table, my braised pork was modified to a rice-wrapped parcel.
Our surf & turf appetizer was a Creole Spiced “Mangalitsa” Pork Belly & Scallop dish accented with butternut squash puree candied pecans, corn & boar bacon succotash. My friend Gavin sitting at the table next to me had a chance to sample the dish before I did and let me know if I needed any help finishing this dish he could assist. I wasn’t keen to share; as a self-professed pork belly addict – I licked my plate clean.
The entrée was visually stunning and the star of the evening for me. The slow roasted bacon wrapped pork loin was stacked on the most delightful pile of yukon & sweet potato pave and paired with an apple & celeriac puree, roasted baby striped beets, and black currant jus.
I am always curious what our Swine & Dine chefs will come up with for dessert, and Chef Jost did not disappoint. The chocolate peanut butter tart was topped with a crisp piece of chocolate dipped bacon, maple bacon ice cream, hazelnut soil, apple cider gel.
I think there could be a market for The Harvest Room’s maple bacon ice cream.
I would like to thank Chef Jost, his culinary team and the staff and The Harvest Room for hosting us for an incredible evening during the holiday season; your passion for food and love of Alberta Pork was evident with each beautifully designed course.
Stay tuned for upcoming Swine and Dine YEG events in 2016!