CANA­DI­ANA REIGNS AT SHOE AND CA­NOE

Calgary Herald - - WEEKEND LIFE - EL­IZ­A­BETH CHORNEY-BOOTH El­iz­a­beth Chorney-Booth can be reached at eliz­a­[email protected] Fol­low her on Twit­ter at @eliz­a­boothy or In­sta­gram at @eliz­a­booth.

Restau­ra­teurs find in­spi­ra­tion from a va­ri­ety of sources: na­ture, fash­ion, mu­sic and, in the case of Shoe and Ca­noe, rel­a­tively ob­scure fig­ures in Cana­dian his­tory.

The restau­rant in the newly ren­o­vated down­town Delta Ho­tel (for­merly known as the Delta Bow Val­ley) could have just been de­signed as a stan­dard ho­tel eatery serv­ing ser­vice­able break­fasts, lunches and din­ners, but the Delta man­age­ment de­cided to take a more creative route.

In­spired by the ro­man­ti­cism of travel ( be­cause it’s a ho­tel, af­ter all), the restau­rant’s con­cept is an homage to 19th-cen­tury ex­plorer David Thomp­son, a sur­veyor and map-maker known for get­ting around by ei­ther foot or boat. Hence the name: Shoe and Ca­noe.

To play upon the theme, the room, which opened to the pub­lic in mid- Septem­ber, is distin­guished by a styl­ized ca­noe logo and a hip, woodsy pub vibe.

And the jour­ney that Shoe and Ca­noe takes guests on?

It’s one that’s meant to make them feel com­fort­able and at home. In ac­cor­dance with the trend in ho­tel restau­rants to go ca­sual rather than forc­ing guests to eat in stuffy din­ing rooms, Shoe and Ca­noe is an ex­pan­sive 142-seat pub spe­cial­iz­ing in craft beers.

With 12 lo­cal beers on tap — five ro­tat­ing and seven reg­u­lar brews in­clud­ing se­lec­tions from Com­mon Crown, Banded Peak, Half Hitch and Shoe and Ca­noe’s sig­na­ture Stargazer — and 30 or so do­mes­tic and in­ter­na­tional choices of­fered by the can or bot­tle, beer is def­i­nitely the cen­tre­piece of this place.

The beer leads the food se­lec­tions, too. Ex­ec­u­tive chef Phil An­drews, who comes di­rectly from the Delta in Win­nipeg and has also worked at Mis­sion Hill Win­ery in Kelowna, is used to hav­ing to pair his food to wine, so pair­ing food to beer isn’t far out of his wheel­house.

The menu is full of beer­wor­thy stan­dards fresh­ened up with a Cana­di­ana twist: a clas­sic cheese­burger made with an Al­berta beef patty served with ket­tle chips and Griz­zly Gouda ranch ($18), Fogo Is­land cod with Al­berta grain tab­bouleh ($26) and an ar­ti­sanal char­cu­terie board ($18 for two or $32 for four peo­ple).

“We cook from scratch to pair up with the beer,” An­drews says. “Which is es­sen­tially work­ing back­wards. You al­ready have the drink in front of you as op­posed to mak­ing some­thing and then try­ing to find an al­co­hol to match it.”

You can cer­tainly do a lot worse when it comes to eat­ing in a ho­tel restau­rant (and don’t fear Delta guests, Shoe and Ca­noe also does break­fast). In fact, you can also do a lot worse eat­ing in a non-ho­tel restau­rant, which is why Shoe and Ca­noe also aims to at­tract a solid down­town lunch and happy hour crowd.

Shoe and Ca­noe is lo­cated at 209 Fourth Ave. S.E. For more in­for­ma­tion, call 403-205-5416.

Fancy some tea over the hol­i­days?

The restau­rant space off the lobby in the Fair­mont Pal­liser, pre­vi­ously oc­cu­pied by the Oak Room Lounge and The Rim­rock, is cur­rently walled off as con­trac­tors build a new restau­rant, but that doesn’t mean the ho­tel will be de­priv­ing Cal­gar­i­ans of the op­por­tu­nity to cel­e­brate Christ­mas with af­ter­noon tea.

From Dec. 20 to 23 and 27 to 30, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., a spe­cial hol­i­day tea will be of­fered in the pent­house Gold Floor Lounge.

Yes, that’s still more than a month off, but with such a lim­ited win­dow and a rel­a­tively small space, it’s bound to book up.

Pal­liser chef Eraj Jayaw­ick­reme has cre­ated a tra­di­tional, three-tiered tea menu, com­plete with dainty fin­ger sand­wiches, freshly baked vanilla scones with clot­ted cream and pre­serves, and a dessert tier that does in­deed in­clude a small slice of fruit­cake.

Guests also get to choose from the Pal­liser’s ex­ten­sive col­lec­tion of herbal and caf­feinated teas. Hol­i­day af­ter­noon tea ser­vice costs $70 per per­son and can be booked by call­ing 403-260-1274.

For tea lovers look­ing for the Pal­liser’s reg­u­lar non-hol­i­day af­ter­noon tea, it’s cur­rently be­ing of­fered in the ho­tel’s tem­po­rary pop-up restau­rant, which is lo­cated on the down­stairs boule­vard level near the spa.

The Cal­gary leg of Canada’s Great Kitchen Party, which serves as the lo­cal qual­i­fier for the Cana­dian Culi­nary Cham­pi­onships, took place on Nov. 1 at the Telus Con­ven­tion Cen­tre.

Ten lo­cal chefs faced off, each cre­at­ing a spe­cial dish to show their cre­ativ­ity and skill.

The panel of judges awarded the top prize to Dave Bo­hati, the new ex­ec­u­tive chef at Mur­ri­eta’s Group, who made a mind-blow­ingly ten­der plate of smoked Brant Lake Wagyu beef cheeks with kabocha squash, Jerusalem ar­ti­chokes, mar­row and Saska­toon berries.

The sil­ver medal went to Teatro Group’s Matthew Batey, who pre­sented a rolled lob­ster and vanilla braised her­itage pork cheek dish.

Roy Oh from Anju took bronze with his Korean Beef Welling­ton fea­tur­ing a sous vide short rib with foie gras and daikon kim­chee.

Bo­hati, who also won the Cal­gary ti­tle in 2014, will head to the Cana­dian Culi­nary Cham­pi­onship fi­nals in Kelowna in early Fe­bru­ary to com­pete against 10 other re­gional win­ners.

The last Cal­gar­ian to take the na­tional ti­tle was For­eign Con­cept’s Jin­hee Lee, who won in2017.

We cook from scratch to pair up with the beer ... which is es­sen­tially back­wards.

PHO­TOS: GAVIN YOUNG

The new Shoe & Ca­noe Pub­lic House at the down­town Delta Ho­tel by Mar­riott pairs menu items with beer be­cause in this eatery, drinks lead the food se­lec­tion.

Braised lamb shank is on the menu, which is full of beer-wor­thy stan­dards fresh­ened up with a Cana­dian twist. Other items in­clude a clas­sic cheese­burger of Al­berta beef with ket­tle chips and Gouda ranch.

In keep­ing with the cur­rent trend in ho­tel restau­rants to go ca­sual with in­te­rior decor, Shoe and Ca­noe fea­tures an ex­pan­sive 142-seat pub that oozes com­fort and is far from a stuffy din­ing room.

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