Passionate Eats and Fantastic Feasts

image: Go Fish Tequila-cured wild sockeye wrapped in vegetable ceviche. credit: Anya Levykh

The 8th Annual Passions event in support of the Dr. Peter Centre recently came off with a resounding success. The event raised over $118,000 for the centre. But the best part of the evening for yours truly—apart from emcee Fred Lee’s hilarious antics—was the incredible edible journey paved by the 24 chefs, two bartenders, one catering company and one food truck that all donated their time, food and people for the night.

Highlights from the evening included wild salmon poutine from food truck Fresh Local Wild (find it daily at Burrard and West Hastings). The salmon was buttery soft, and the gravy had the woodsy tang of wild mushrooms. Coast Restaurant’s raw ahi tuna wrapped in prime ribeye, with shizo, soy, candied peanut and cilantro was a simple composition that was rich and fresh at the same time. Pork belly played a starring role in several chefs’ dishes, including Oru’s adobo version with lightly pickled vegetables, as well as Hapa Umi’s soy-braised belly with pickled chanterelles, dashi-stewed tomato and crispy burdock root. A favourite seemed to be Hawksworth’s pork press with almonds and peach chutney. Despite all of the fabulous porcine goodness, it was almost a relief to the light stylings of Maenam’s jumbo scallop ceviche with nahm jim sauce or the earthy warmth of Cin Cin Executive Chef Todd Howard’s smoked potato ravioli with braised octopus. Despite my kvetching, however, the only thing one truly had to complain about was decimation of any and all dietary willpower.

Fantastic Feast at Krause Berry Farm

Earlier on the same day, Farm Folk/City Folk held their annual fundraiser out in Langley. It was a packed—and warm—event, and the food and wine flowed freely. Admittedly, I had to wonder at those who drove, when noting their enthusiastic wine consumption. After a couple snifters of fabulous local plonk, the heat of the day made me decide to stick to hooch-free concoctions for the rest of the day, if I was to have any chance of driving back home—or even avoiding passing out on the grass. As for the food, the heat didn’t dampen my, or anyone else’s, enthusiasm, especially for delights like the tequila-cured wild sockeye wrapped in a vegetable ceviche, courtesy of Go Fish, or the stunning poached salmon club from Ebo, which generated one of the longest line-ups at the event. My personal favourite was the killer pizza from Mary MacKay of Terra Breads, who brought her own steel-can-rigged wood-burning oven with her to produce a thin, highly chewy, moist and flavourful base topped with a classic margherita. This year’s event was sold out, and it’s never too early to plan to attend for next year.

Feast of Fields Metro Vancouver will be held Sunday, September 9th 2012. Tickets go on sale June 1st. For more information, click here.

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Anya Levykh was born on the shores of the Black Sea, in what was formerly the USSR. The cold, Communist winters were too much for her family, and, before she was four feet tall, they had left for warmer climes in the south of ...

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