Friday, August 24, 2012

Chef David Hawksworth and Chef Victor Barry Collaborate for a Splendid Dinner at Splendido Restaurant, Toronto

I have long been a fan of Splendido's chef Victor Barry. Last september, I visited Vancouver and enjoyed eating at chef David Hawksworth's eponymous restaurant. I was looking forward to experiencing this collaboration.

Two apps, "fish and chips", salmon skin crackling topped with a bit of malted vinegar powder, good texture, but a bit bland; "blini and bacon", a delicious combination of house made pancetta topped with simple syrup and thyme.

Wonderful, sweet, chilled corn soup. The glass was rimmed with a powdered combination of cumin, coriander, salt and pepper, a fantastic accent of contrasting flavours that pop with the flavours of the sweet corn soup.

Smoked oyster with potato foam and chopped  chives. Lovely!

B.C. dungeness crab with Vickies Veggies heirloom tomatoes, small balls of creme fraiche, smoked beurre monte, heirloom tomato water and fresh dill. Here again, a refreshing, delightful combination of a range of complementary flavours. The combined crunchy texture and flavour of the fleur de sel, make a good counterpoint to the sweet flavours of the tomatoes.

Fois gras snow, a fois gras parfait with cherries, madeira, brown butter and walnuts.

Georges Bank scallops. Perfectly cooked and carmelised scallops wonderfully complemented by crunchy skinned, tempura fried cauliflower that had been tossed in a sauce made of garlic, green onion, soy, brown sugar, mirin and 
korean chili paste.

Orange glazed, miso caramelized sable fish with yuzu marinated shiitake, pea tips, roasted carrot strip chips. A lovely range of sweet and the sour flavours.

Agnolotti punched by wonderfully intense, Perigourd truffle-like, Australian black truffles with black butter and fontina cheese.

Perfectly cooked Peking duck had a very tender texture and wonderful flavour. The sides were a cannelloni filled with pulled duck meat and the very complementary flavour of a piece of charred apricot.

Picobello cheese, an unripened sheep's milk cheese from the Netherlands, peaches, pistachio and olive oil toast (no photo).

Hazelnut cereal, shredded hazelnuts, compressed strawberries and tre leche foam made from condensed milk.

OMG, chocolate lovers were united on this dish, chocolate sphere filled with ice cream, peanut crumble, caramel and sea salt and sided with a wonderful dark chocolate sauce (so good, I also had everyone's leftovers).

Macaroons with chocolate and passion fruit (top); incredible home made honeydew mellon marshmallows (!!) (middle); remarkable truffled chocolate truffles (!!) (bottom).

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