Five stars for five-course meal

From This Rock brings de­li­cious va­ri­ety to Ho­tel Port aux Basques

The Gulf News (Port aux Basques) - - Sports - BY BRYAN TAIT bryan.tait@tc.tc

Gougères with blue­berry con­fi­ture and smoked ched­dar

This was a nice lit­tle starter, al­most like a pre-meal dessert. It’s a savoury pas­try, filled with cheese.

It wasn’t much more than a mouth­ful, which is prob­a­bly for the best since there were four more cour­ses to come.

Sautéed mus­sels, green toma­toes, mus­tard pickles sauce and fresh basil

Con­fes­sion time. De­spite liv­ing on the East Coast for my en­tire life, I had never tried mus­sels un­til this event. I have tried shell­fish in the past, but was never a fan. Some­thing about the tex­ture just turned me off. But I’m game. So I dug in. First thing, shell­fish pre­pared by a skilled chef is pretty good. I’m still not fussy about the tex­ture, but I ate most of what was in the dish.

Con­fes­sion num­ber two. I’d never had mus­tard pickles be­fore this event. I feel this is less egre­gious, as I’m from New Brunswick and they’re not as big a thing there as here in New­found­land.

They’re good. For some­one who doesn’t eat a lot of pickles, I en­joyed the sauce.

Savoury dress­ing crusted cod with roasted root veg­eta­bles, brus­sel sprout-ba­con hash and squash purée

This was the high­light of the evening for me. I love a good piece of fish, and this cod came cour­tesy of Co­droy Seafoods right here on the south­west coast.

The cod was melt-in- your-mouth good, and once you throw a lit­tle ba­con in the mix, you don’t even have to tell me what else is in the dish. I’m sold.

With the veg­eta­bles added to the mix, this would have been a meal on its own, but we’re nowhere near fin­ished.

Bal­lo­tine of chicken with coun­try-style stuff­ing, con­fit tomato and velouté sauce

Take a piece of chicken, stuff it, then slice it up and serve it with some peeled, roasted toma­toes. There it is. And it’s de­li­cious.

Af­ter the fish course, I won­dered just how much room I’d have left for chicken.

Not sure why I wor­ried. I would have eaten the en­tire piece if it had been put in front of me. This is how chicken should be cooked. It was ten­der and juicy, and com­bined with the stuff­ing, you’ve got a meal that could re­place turkey din­ner on Thanks­giv­ing.

Straw­berry short­cake

There’s very lit­tle to say about the dessert, ex­cept that it was ex­cel­lent. Juicy berries and fresh-made short­cake made it the per­fect cap­per to the meal.

BRYAN TAIT/TC ME­DIA

Gougères with blue­berry con­fi­ture and smoked ched­dar.

BRYAN TAIT/TC ME­DIA

Bal­lo­tine of chicken with coun­try-style stuff­ing, con­fit tomato and velouté sauce.

BRYAN TAIT/TC ME­DIA

Sautéed mus­sels, green toma­toes, mus­tard pickles sauce and fresh basil.

BRYAN TAIT/TC ME­DIA

Savoury dress­ing crusted cod with roasted root veg­eta­bles, brus­sel sprout­ba­con hash and squash purée.

BRYAN TAIT/TC ME­DIA

Straw­berry short­cake.

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