Thursday, May 27, 2010
ode to Jenna & Kshonze
So... another week, another blog entry about the Whalesbone. I know... you must wonder if I ever go home? I'll admit... I do spend lots of time there... but you see, it's just so much fun. And I don't just mean the working part, I mean the people. I heart the crew.
You've already met Charlotte. She's the head Chef. And she's super cool. But there are lots of other super cool, awesome people that work there too. I want to introduce you to two of them: Jenna and Kshonze (or Kshonz-ay as Charlotte calls him).
Saturday night. Tasting menu. Jenna and Kshonze behind the saucier and me sitting directly in front of them. I think it's the best spot in the house - I get to chat with the Chefs and see what they're doing while eating some pretty amazing food. Yeah... incredible evening. Exceptional food.
You'll notice the blurry pictures of the two Chefs... it's because they move so fast! HA! Actually, just my playing with my camera. But I think the effect is pretty cool.
Notice how Jenna wears pearls while she works? She was also wearing "moderately" short-shorts... it gets really hot back there after all... you can't blame a girl for wanting to be comfortable while working. She also makes the best desserts. Like her peanut butter chocolate cheesecake. DECADENCE in a bite. I took a picture of my piece. Jenna's also the one who walked me through making chocolate ganache last Friday night. I heart her for that (and all her amazing talent).
Then there is Kshonze. The first time I worked at the Whalebone he and I hung out together in the prep kitchen. He taught me how to cut carrots. Seriously. He also let me make cake. I heart him just for that. And the fact that he is cool as a cucumber. Pretty cool eh?
My evening started off with some local bread, brown butter (a million sighs) and an assortment of oysters. East Coast and West Coast representation... B.C. oysters being my favourite of the evening. Kshonze got me some balsamic vinegar and we were good to go...
Jenna and Kshonze then created my tasting menu:
pickled beets and beans / seared albacore tuna / scallop ceviche / blue cheese ... OK the blue cheese just played off the beets and the seafood perfectly. And honestly, the fish was melt in your mouth tender. And doesn't the plate look pretty?
greens and radish / diced potatoes / spotted prawns / lobster tail ... two salads on the plate. Well, the block. You can see the trio getting plated... and then you can see my clean plate. Except for the prawn shells. So light and fresh. I heart lobster (thanks for listening to my request guys).
a shot of Sailor Jerry's spiced rum... it's gross. Seriously. The one thing I don't recommend at the WBOH. But... it'd be rude to refuse right? So down it went. Maybe it was meant to clean my palate for the next course.
fiddle heads / asparagus / beans / seared pacific salmon / white wine butter sauce ... the salmon was... in a word... perfection. The skin was crisp, the centre was tender and flaked apart. The sauce wasn't heavy, it was light and just drizzled the plate. The bed of greens still had a bite and tasted so fresh. I heart this course.
Pascale's vanilla ice cream / chocolate ganache / fresh fruit / salted peanuts ... I don't have a picture of the sundae. You keep seeing them and honestly, the picture just didn't turn out. I personally would have added more ganache... but that's just me ;0)
finally... I know, I know! I'm still eating!!!!
peanut butter chocolate cheesecake ... Jenna's decadent cake. It's dense and creamy with a kick of cinnamon in the filling. Jenna also made an oreo cookie crumb crust. Seriously!
This my friends, is why I keep going back to the WBOH. Clean flavours. Major taste. But really... it's the crew. They rock. I heart them. This is my ode to two of them.
Oh! I also added a picture of the Paella Valenciana... so that you can see what my paella portions look like when cooked ;0)