Mike and Ron picked well again!
Big Easy's Seafood and Steakhouse, located on Preston Street, was the location for the 8th Omnivore's Ottawa Supper Club, where 45 or so of us gathered for good food.
Restauranteur Val Belcher greeted us with a glass of sparkling wine upon arrival (and I actually drank mine, though it took me the entire night to do so), while Chef Barrin Bruck and his crew put together a 5 course meal for us.
Warm bread was brought to our table with two butter choices: a "regular" whipped butter and a caramalized butter, which as divine. We had two of these at our table of four and could have used two more.
Appetizer Course: Madeira escargot on shitake mushroom with steamed leek, salmon flank frite with dill aioli and blood orange tuna ceviche.
The description of this course is what lost my husband's interest in joining me for this meal. Don't worry, I didn't eat alone. I went with a few friends, foodies themselves and we savored every course.
Salad Course: Jumbo blue crab, frisee, roasted corn, poached quail egg, sweet onion dressing, curry apple oil, sundried tomato confit and garlic oil.
You may have noticed over the last few years of my blog that I like to talk. I'm not shy with my opinions either.
When this course was over, we were asked by a friend at another table how we enjoyed it, and my boss, who was sitting beside me said, "It was so good that Jenny said nothing during that entire course!"
I had crab, I was happy.
Third Course, Duck and Shrimp: Duck-prosciutto-wrapped barbeque shrimp, White Stone Asiago creamed grits, with red-eye gravy.
Did you know you could replace the flour in red-eye gravy with ground kidney beans? I know I didn't. I didn't taste them, fortunately, but they matched well with the duck fat and the coffee to make a gravy that balanced the richness of those creamy grits.
This course was served with a Chardonnay, paired to match the smokiness of the prosciutto. It smelled very nice and didn't taste bad either. (You all know how much I love my wine, hehe.)
Happy Birthday to BC, who joined me for dinner! She waited until after dinner to tell me it was her birthday the next day.
Probably a good thing - maybe they would have made her stand on a chair while we all sang to her.
Fourth Course: Where's the Beef? Chili pomegranate glazed tenderloin, gorgonzola pecan-stuffed croquette, smoked asparagus and caramalized chipolini onions and lattice cut potato chips. Served with a red wine (I have no idea what it was, I forgot to write it down, and I did not drink mine.)
Remember at last months dinner when I said the beef course was one of the reasons I will never be a vegetarian? Just take a look at confirmation of that belief. Melt in your mouth, rare tenderloin, paired with a croquette that was wonderfully crispy on the outside, but smooth and mellow on the inside. The onions were soft and beautiful, and when they said smoked asparagus, they meant SMOKED asparagus. So good, soooo good.
Final Course, Dessert: Sweet potato Canadian Maple Cheesecake with pecan-graham crust, Bailey's whipped cream, pepper tuile and spiced apple bourbon sauce.
Cheesecake that was so light it was mousse-like. The Bailey's in the whipped cream was so generous that we speculated how they managed to whip the cream. All of it amazingly good. We'd have licked our plates if it wasn't so rude.
This entire meal came to $85, including the sparkling wine, two additional glasses of wine, taxes and gratuity.
Many thanks to the staff, kitchen and dinning room alike, for a lovely evening. And thanks to Ron and Mike for organizing and setting up another winner.