Cultureguru's Weblog

Of food, technology, movies, music, and travel—or whatever else strikes my fancy

Bandalooping, fundraising, and local dining

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Did not spend the whole weekend configuring my computer. In fact, we did a number of other activities, starting with attending Centre in the Square’s season opener event, featuring dance troupe Bandaloop. They specialize in what they call “vertical dance”, meaning they perform dangling from wires, off the sides of buildings.

So this free Centre in the Square event was outdoors. The weather was definitely nippy that day, which none of us were used to, particularly after the record-breaking heat earlier in the week (hottest day of the summer). But we coped, thanks to scarves and such. And it was pretty neat seeing the performance off the edge of the building. They did four numbers:

  1. A couple performing a swing dance (of sorts)
  2. A trio of women in red doing somewhat balletic moves
  3. A solo piece to very modern music
  4. A finale of six dancers, three on each wall (a piece normally done on one wall, but adapted for this space)

Bandaloop at Centre in the Square

We then decamped for dinner at Sole Restaurant, where they were featuring (yet another) local food menu, this time a four-course, with matching wines—all from Vineland Estates.

It started with a smoked trout salad with green beans and almonds, served with Pinot Grigio. The fish had very nice texture but not a strong smokey flavor (not sure if that’s good or bad); the beans were just delicious in slightly sweet glaze.

The next appetizer was a roasted tomato tart with goat cheese, tapenade, and basil, served with semi-dry Riesling. The crust here was a little tougher than ideal. Jean found the filling a bit salty, but I don’t know; tapenade is meant to be salty—I don’t think they overdid it. I wouldn’t have picked out a semi-dry white with this, but it actually went very well. Nice balance.

Roasted tomato tart

Little tart! (This is Jean’s caption. Not entirely sure which subject he’s referring to.)

The main course was duck confit, with banana bread, cherry compote, and sugar snap peas, served with Elevation Cabernet. The duck confit was fantastic—great texture and flavor. The sweetness of the banana bread was intriguing, though the texture was a little too dry in parts. The Cabernet was impressively delicious, with chocolate notes.

Duck and banana bread

Dessert was a peach trio of crème brulée, mini pie, and cheesecake lollipop, served with Cabernet ice wine. Best was definitely the crème brulée, all nice and creamy. The tart was fine. The lollipop was just kind of strange in texture.

Peach three ways

Then Sunday morning, we participated in the Terry Fox Run for the first time, though “Run” should be in quotes, because we walked. But we walked briskly and made pretty good time, I think; not that it’s a race. I’ve just always wanted to participate in the Terry Fox Run, as he’s a hero of mine, so it was nice to finely do it. Especially as we didn’t get rained on.

Sunday afternoon, 2-4, we had yet another food event! For the first time in a few years, we went to Foodlink’s Taste Local event, whereby restaurants partner with a local food producer and create an appetizer. For $60, you get 19 items. Don’t worry; we didn’t take pictures of them all, nor will I describe them all.

Taste Local event at Steckle Farm

A look at the Taste Local event. Despite the threatening sky, we didn’t get rained on here, either.

I will note a few of the highlights, though:

  • Pulled duck (from Top Market Meats) with red onion preserve and chèvre on potato rosti, by Little Mushroom Catering. Mmm, duck.
  • Cured trout from Caudle’s Catch with radish and cucumber salad, on tortilla, by Marisol Restaurant (a favorite of ours). Doesn’t sound that good, but tasted amazing. Perfect texture, great flavoring.
  • Nick and Nat’s chicken liver pate on toasted with fruit relish preserve. So rich and creamy, to me it tasted almost like foie gras.
  • Tomato milk shake with basil foam and balsamic reduction by Solé (them again!). As long as you like tomato, pretty nice.
  • Taco Farm taking Herrle’s corn and adding a Mexican touch of lime, cilantro, and cream. Really good. (And served to us by Lydia Herrle, which was nice to see.)
  • Waterloo Inn using OK eggs to make an egg tower: Frittata with pickled egg and bacon aioli. Great idea, well executed, quite delicious.

But really, everything was good.

The main problem with the event was the odd timing, meal-wise. We had breakfast but no lunch in anticipation, resulting in Jean initially rushing through the booths at breakneck speed, because he was really hungry! We did get him to slow down after the first five or so.

And after two hours of this, we were all really full. (A lot of meat involved in these.) We attended with Kristi, who commented that we seem to be making a habit of marathon eating together (like Verses 20 courses), which maybe isn’t such a good thing. Anyway.

So clearly we didn’t have dinner after that, and facing a fairly long evening ahead, we went out to a movie. But I’ll save that for another post.


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