The pairing of good food and good wine is fundamentally a good thing. To pair again, students learning to create good food, with an established Chef and a wine expert, elevates a good thing to a great thing!
I was thrilled to attend the Chef and Wine dinner at Georgian College recently. The event featured Chef André Sanche of Ciboulette et Cie in Midland, students of the Culinary, Hospitality, and Tourism programs at the college, and wine expert Jeremy Hall, representing Lifford Wine and Spirits. Live music was provided by Michelle Guy and Brad Hilliker.
Christine McSorley, Manager of the Georgian Dining Room, Catering and Events, explained that the goal of the Chef and Wine series is to connect students with Chefs and resorts in Simcoe County and beyond. This provides students with opportunities to enhance their learning, which in turn connects those creating food with the broader community, so that fortunate souls, like myself can dine, wine and socialize with other foodies while enjoying a splendid meal. Another perk of the Chef Series is the opportunity for all to view the Chef du jour in action, as they demonstrate and educate all present. While I am but an occasional sipper of spirits, it wasn’t a challenge to enlist a dear friend as designated drinker. I consumed but a mere mouthful of each proffered vino, but was duly impressed.
We started with a Cabert Prosecco, while hors d’oeuvres were served; as apparently “bubbles open the palate”. Mixed Vegetable Bhaji, Smoked Mushroom Croquettes and Roasted Beet and Feta Bites were served with finesse by students. Designated drinker and I wanted to take a tray of Vegetable Bhaji home for nibbling, they were amazing.
André Sanche is not only an Executive Chef, but also an informed local food advocate; he sources ingredients of the highest quality for his cooking. Chef André educated us as he fed us, sharing tidbits of his vast knowledge. I for one was pleased to learn that my fondness for Kozlik’s Mustard is well placed, as apparently 85% of the world’s Dijon Mustard is grown in Canada.
Those fancy French Dijon’s that adorn store shelves may have been made in France with Canadian mustard seed, so why not purchase local, as in doing so we are supporting local producers, growers and keeping more money at home. My jars of Kozlik’s now literally represent that I am putting my money where my mouth is!
We sat at communal tables for dinner, which started with a Local Cheese and Charcuterie Board and a glass of Louis Jadot Beaujolais-Villages. I adored the pumpkin chutney accompaniment, made from pumpkins grown in the Chefs’ yard. Slow Roasted Beef Marrow, a first for many, enjoyed by most came next, the sprinkle of roasted crushed capers was an amazing accent, with a glass of Bernard Defaix Chablis. Our main course was Pan Seared Pickerel, sharing the spotlight with The Velvet Devil Merlot. Dessert was a light and tasty Black Currant and Blood Orange Mille-feuille served with tea or coffee. I firmly believe in sharing with my readers the many delightful new or established gems of dining venues which I have discovered while noshing and nibbling my way around Simcoe County. Sharing the Chef and Wine Series with you dear readers is a win-win opportunity for all.
Two evenings remain for the 2013 Series; on May 24th Chef Greg Renett of Painters Hall Bistro takes the kitchen and then on June 14th, Chef Vince Galatti from Local Foods Mart has his turn. Past events have included Barrie notable names such as, Chef Randy Feltis of PIE and The Farmhouse, and Chef Marco Ormonde of The North.
It appears there is still more for me to discover at Georgian College; the “International Dinners” sound intriguing, as they are being cooked, hosted and served entirely by students.
The venue is available for catered events, weddings, or meetings and the dining room will host 140 to a sit down meal or 250 for a stand up reception. Adjacent is a spacious courtyard, allowing for seasonal events to be enjoyed in the garden.
The Chef and Wine Series is a showcase; for our local Chefs and for the Georgian students as they hone their skills. Co-op placement connections grow here, as does word of mouth within our community so that we may support our local college.
This event is a pairing of all that is good!
Georgian Dining Room Catering and Events
705-728-1968 x 1413
This review was originally posted on Simcoe Dining in May 2013
Copyright 2015 YYZtech Group Media Ltd. Used with permission.