Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Food Vacationing in Calgary - Day 2 CHARCUT Roast House

     For our second day of food vacationing in Calgary, we were eager to find a restaurant that would cap off our trip. After looking at a number of Calgary foodie blogs, Open Table for ideas, and checking out various restaurant's websites - only to find that most were closed on Monday nights, we settled on CHARCUT. As I didn't have access to internet for the rest of the day, I had no idea what to expect for dinner. The restaurant was relatively easy to find, with their location right across the street from the Calgary tower and beside Hotel Le Germain. The only difficulty my friend experienced was finding parking near the restaurant due to the number of one-way streets in downtown Calgary.
     Dan & I had made reservations through Open Table earlier that day, so upon walking in (and having our coats checked) we were immediately seated at our table - which was in a great location! Not only could we see the street view and the door, but it lent us the opportunity to look out on the restaurant's activities and to peer behind us at the open kitchen - where all the food passed the final prep stage.

     While we were waiting, Chef Connie came by and introduced herself to us. She also left a small sample plate behind for us to try. Pictured below are slices of their house-made sausage topped with Parmesan and shaved lamb with Gruyere cheese. These samples were excellent and it was a great way to start the night!

     After some thinking over the menu we settled on two smaller plates and a charcuterie board to share. This seemed like the best choice as we wanted to get a good sample of the different types of charcuterie meats. Here they are!
Brioche with Marrow Butter and Maldon Salt ($4)
The brioche was beautiful, fresh and toasted just right. 
Plus, the maldon salt was not overly bearing.
Duck Fat Poutine with Cheese Curds and Truffle Gravy (yes, Duck Fat!!) - ($8)
I can't tell you how amazing this poutine is. This is probably one of the best
 poutines I've ever had. It was incredibly flavourful, likely from the duck fat and 
the addition of the truffle gravy! It was a melt in your mouth lingering taste of truffle gravy 
and fat (not just as a heat source) but you could taste the fat.  
The Charcut Board containing the signature Pig's Head Mortadella, lamb with gruyere, salumi with parmesan, slow-cooked shaved ham, pork croquettes and house-made brassica mustard and aioli sauce! ($36)

     After a very satisfying dinner, Chef Connie came by again to see how the dinner went. Needless to say, all we had were praises and exclamations of how enjoyable each dish was, including the Pig head Mortadella. Did you know that it takes almost an entire a weekend for them to prep the pig heads? From our conversation with Chef Connie, all the pig heads come in from local farmers on a Friday for instance. Then, they take all the meat out of the pig heads to season them etc...After the seasoning they stuff the meat back into the pig heads, sew the heads up and cook them (can't recall how long though). Then, when it its finished they let the meat sit for the weekend. Finally, the meat is done and that's the amazing taste you have when you try their pig head mortadello! Of course depending on what the seasons are for that week, each time you go it will likely be different.
     Oh and of course, we had to have dessert while we were at Charcut. Pictured below is the chocolate torte with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. 
Chocolate Torte ($8)
Compliments of the chef - their no bake cheesecake in a mason jar created by layers of cream cheese 
and graham crackers topped with house-made cranberry preserves and caramel pieces.
Although, I'm partial to chocolate, this one was the winner! 
     All in all, a great meal to complete our two day eating trip in Calgary. Service at Charcut was consistently attentive throughout the evening, our water was always filled, servers reminded us what the dishes were when they arrived and the dessert was stellar. With house-made cranberry preserves and layers of cheese and graham crackers you cannot go wrong! I will definitely return to Charcut on my next visit to Calgary! 


Charcut Roast House
101 899 Centre Street SW
Calgary, AB T2G 1B8
(403) 984-2180

www.charcut.com
CHARCUT Roast House on Urbanspoon

7 comments:

  1. that was surely a great dinner! i think i'll take pat there next time...i think he would enjoy it as well!! yummy....i can't believe how good the pig head was!! =)

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  2. Yumm i totally agree with you... that was a delicious meal!! =) I think I'll take Pat there the next time he comes over! The pig head was super tasty....when are you coming back??

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  3. Hi,

    Your first post just appeared on Urbanspoon! Check it out:
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  4. hey...
    Does EVERYONE get special cheesecake, or just food bloggers with cameras?!

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  5. @cokopuffs: I think one of the reasons we got it was because we were going to order it anyways. We opted for the chocolate torte first (as we were so full), but perhaps Chef Connie saw the look on @danprime's face when she was describing the cheesecake and then his face when we opted for the chocolate torte instead.Either way, the service is great and they are genuinely nice people.

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  6. Pretty awesome. You and Dan pretty much read my mind, as I was just talking to my hubby about having a Calgary food road trip, and you chose the two restaurants I wanted to try! Fun! Looks like it's been a great experience.

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  7. @Lea: have you gone yet?? It was an awesome Calgary food trip for us!! :) FARM was excellent as was CHARCUT

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