You be the Chef at Catch for the Big Taste

by Michael Buffett · 0 comments

This year at The Big Taste, Calgary’s Dining Festival, Catch offered up a glimpse into their kitchen. Executive Chef Kyle Groves came up with four succulent dishes that General Manager/Sommelier Anthony Chalmers paired perfectly with some of BC’s finest wine. The twist was that we (the guests) had to cook all of the dishes. This interactive cooking class, set on the second story of Catch’s soon-to-be-renovated dining room, proved to be the most interesting event of the week.

We arrived at noon and Anthony had a few bottles of Summerhill Cipes Brut sparkling wine ready to pour. The sound of the champagne cork popping was a sign that lunch was certain to be a memorable experience. Once we all arrived we headed up into the dining room and noticed five cooking stations. We quickly paired off into groups of four, and put our aprons over our nice street clothing - I don’t know why we would wear such nice clothing, but we all did.

At our tables were little booklets that contained all the recipes, and small containers with all of the perfectly chopped ingredients. Everybody was ecstatic when they realized the hard part was pre-done. For the first course all we had to do was heat up the pot, sautée the bacon and vegetables; then add the lentils and stock. A quick puree with a hand blender and we were ready to eat our first course. The soup was paired with a pinot noir from BC and the two complemented each other perfectly.

The next course was a raw tuna carpaccio with a mushroom salad. With the guidance of Kyle we were able to make it in just a few easy steps. The main course was bass. Luckily, we were shown how to remove the scales and fillet the fish, but had the luxury of not having to do it ourselves. While the bass was in the oven, we quickly sautéed the spinach with some bacon. This was all set beautifully on a plate with some smashed potatoes. I loved this dish. The crispy fish skin made me wonder why I had ever removed it in the past.

At this point we had all sipped several generously portioned glasses of vino, and were quite content just sitting around, enjoying each other’s company. I’m sure they knew this would happen, and had the dessert prepared for us. A chocolate lava cake with Drambuie ice cream. It ended our experience in big way. Was this The Big Taste? I’m not sure, but it very well might have been.

Great food, amazing wine, a little knowledge gained and a few new friends. If Catch offers this event again I think I will be the first in line. It’s no wonder that Catch was just rated the number one restaurant in Calgary by Avenue Magazine!

These cooking classes run occasionally, so if you’d like to be the chef at Catch visit their website for details.

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