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Category: Weekly Dish columns from The Edmonton Sun

Weekly Dish columns from The Edmonton Sun

Hicks' Weekly Dish: Buco Pizzeria and Vino Bars offer excellent wide-ranging fare By GRAHAM HICKS, first published EDMONTON SUN April 3, 2018

Buco-style crispy-skinned seabass , served with a light mayo sauce. Photos by GRAHAM HICKS/EDMONTON SUN Buco Pizzeria and Vino Bars bucopizzera.com Buco EPCOR Tower, 10423-101 St., main floor 780-250-2826 Mon. to Fri. 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. (1 a.m. Friday) Sat. 4 p.m.  to 1 a.m. Sun. 4 p.m. to 11 a.m. Buco Windermere, 1155 Windermere Way S.W. 780-540-2826 Tues. to Sat. 11 a.m. to midnight (1 a.m. Friday/Saturday) Sun. and Mon. 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Buco St. Albert, 130 Bellerose Dr., St. Albert 780-569-2826 Mon. to Fri. 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. (10:30 p.m. Friday) Sat. 10 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. Sun. 10 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Dinner for two, not including tip, tax or beverage:  Basic, $30; loaded, $80 Food – 4.5 of 5 Suns Ambience – 4 of 5 Suns Service –  4 of 5 Suns Graham Hicks 780-707-6379 graham.hicks@hicksbiz.com Hicksbiz.com @hicksonsix Even Carmelo Rago, top dog of the family-run Sorrentino/Buco restaurant group, is surprised at the welcome the city has ... Read the rest of entry »

Hicks' Weekly Dish: Wildflower Grill good, but too conventional By GRAHAM HICKS first published EDMONTON SUN March 27, 2018

Not much happening within the Wildflower pork chop. Wildflower Grill 10009 107 St. 780-990-1938 Wildfloweredmonton.com 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., 4:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. (Fridays and Saturdays, 11 p.m.) Dinner for two, not including tip, tax or beverage:  Basic, $70; loaded, $130 Food – 3.5 of 5 Suns Ambience – 3.5 of 5 Suns Service- 4 of 5 Suns By GRAHAM HICKS Expectations, you are banished. Go sulk under the kitchen table. You’ve let me down again. Off the Weekly Dish reviewing team went last week – three of us – on a mid-week expedition to the Wildflower Grill. Wildflower has been around for many years – originally the flagship of Richard Lim’s now-defunct Lazia Hospitality Group –  in the same building as the downtown Matrix Hotel but with a separate entrance and address. It was sold sometime in the past year, with a reported re-commitment to quality by the new owners, and the hiring of a young Calgary chef, J.P. Dublado. I had high ho ... Read the rest of entry »

Hicks' Weekly Dish: Vietnamese contrast – An Chay, Miss Saigon, Saigon Garden by GRAHAM HICKS, first published EDMONTON SUN March 20, 2018

An Chay's vegetarian vermicelli special at $13 is excellent value. An Chay 11203 Jasper Ave. Facebook 780-752-2203 Weekdays, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Weekends, noon to 8 p.m. Closed Tuesdays Dinner for two, not including tip, tax or beverage:  Basic, $25; loaded, $50 Food – 4.5 of 5 Suns Ambience – 4.5 of 5 Suns Service- 4 of 5 Suns Miss Saigon 10375 78 Ave. misssaigonyeg.com 780-249-2220 Hours: Sunday to Thursday, 11 a.m. to midnight Friday-Saturday, 11 a.m. to 4 a.m. Dinner for two, basic $30; loaded, $45 Food – 3.5 of 5 Suns Ambience – 3.5 of 5 Suns Service – 3.5 of 5 Suns *** Saigon Garden 9711 107 Ave. 780-428-8833 saigongarden.ca Hours: 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Closed Tuesdays Dinner for two, basic $30; loaded $45 Food – 3.5 of 5 Suns Ambience – 2.5 of 5 Suns Service – 4 of 5 Suns Three Vietnamese eateries today, each worthy, but certainly illustrating the breadth and ... Read the rest of entry »

Hicks' Weekly Dish: Downtown Dining Week offers a taste of Edmonton's core By GRAHAM HICKS, first published EDMONTON SUN March 13, 2018

Despite downtown parking regulations more complex than a Rubik’s Cube, I still recommend lunch or dinner this week at just about all (decent) downtown restaurants through Sunday, March 18. It’s the 15th annual Downtown Dining Week, produced by the Downtown Business Association. Cheap eats! Champagne at beer prices! At the very least, you’ll save 10% to 20% over regular a-la-carte prices, often more. After 15 years, most of the bugs have been worked out on this special offer. It’s designed to entice you back to the downtown to experience Edmonton’s terrific restaurant renaissance, a renaissance that is being recognized across Canada. Too bad downtown parking is so expensive and so sparse – see below. Each of the 37 participating restaurants can mix and match from three categories — $18 mostly two-course lunches, $30 for mostly-three course dinners, or $45 “executive dinners” on offer at the top-end eateries such as The Harvest Room, Hardware ... Read the rest of entry »

Hicks' Weekly Dish: Wishbone is good, not quite a wish come true By GRAHAM HICKS, first published Edmonton Sun, February 27, 2018

The fried chicken sandwich is a Wishbone lunch highlight. By GRAHAM HICKS Wishbone 10542 Jasper Avenue 780-757-6758 Eatwishbone.ca Monday to Friday, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. (1 a.m. Fridays) Saturday, 5 p.m. to 1 a.m. Closed Sunday (Reservations at eatwishbone.ca) Dinner for two, not including tip, tax or beverage:  Basic, $25; loaded, $70 Food – 3.5 of 5 Suns Ambience – 4 of 5 Suns Service – 4 of 5 Suns Not that there was any fatal flaw, but two visits to the downtown Wishbone Restaurant and Oyster Bar left me disappointed. Open since July of last year, Wishbone is the downtown incarnation of the South-Side’s Three Boars on 109 St. south of the High Level Bridge, with the same ownership and same partner/executive chef Brayden Kozak. Three Boars was one of the first chef-owned bistros in town. When opened in 2013 it was a wildly inventive place. Chef Kozak would take whatever came through the kitchen door from his suppliers and ch ... Read the rest of entry »

Hicks' Weekly Dish: Why not try Why Not Cafe & Bar? by GRAHAM HICKS, first published Edmonton Sun: February 20, 2018

By GRAHAM HICKS Why Not Café & Bar 8534-109 St. 780-297-5757 Whynoteat.ca Tuesday to Friday, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. (12 a.m. Fridays) Saturday, 4 p.m. to 12 a.m. Closed Sunday and Monday Dinner for two, not including tip, tax or beverage:  Basic, $40; loaded, $80 Food – 4 of 5 Suns Ambience – 3.5 of 5 Suns Service- 4 of 5 Suns The food at the Why Not Café is excellent and quite original, the ambience a bit of a hoot, the service excellent. But the portions are like that “yellow polka-dot bikini” song … itsy bitsy and teeny weeny. Owners/chefs Levi Biddlecombe and Tyson Wright (formerly of the Attila the HUNgry food truck, and, for a short stint, co-head chefs at Packrat Louie)  are proud of being renegade culinary artists. They shun the slick and fashionable: Why Not feels more like a prohibition-era  speakeasy than anything else – as if painted in dark colours on a Saturday afternoon by friends, decorated ... Read the rest of entry »

Hicks' Weekly Dish: Return to RGE RD a delectable treat By GRAHAM HICKS, first published Edmonton Sun, February 13, 2018

RGE RD 10643 123 St. 780-447-4577 rgerd.ca Monday to Saturday, 5 p.m. to midnight Closed Sundays Dinner for two, not including tip, tax or beverage:  Basic, $60; loaded, $120 Food – 5 of 5 Suns Ambience – 4 of 5 Suns Service- 4.5 of 5 Suns In 2013, when RGE RD was just three months old, The Weekly Dish awarded the restaurant an extremely rare 5 out of a possible of 5 Suns for its food. I am delighted, ecstatic in fact, that a return visit almost five years later has earned Blair Lebsack’s restaurant yet another perfect, 5 of 5 Sun rating for its food. Everything was as good, if not better than that impressive showing in 2013 — one of the only differences being the need these days to make a prime-time reservation many weeks ahead. Chef Lebsack, who left a comfortable job teaching at the NAIT culinary school to launch what was then a bold experiment, has stuck clearly and calmly to the same food philosophy that has guided RGE RD since conception. He sticks as clo ... Read the rest of entry »

Hicks' Weekly Dish: Cibo Bistro offers consistently tasty Italian cuisine By GRAHAM HICKS, first published Edmonton Sun, February 6, 2018

Cibo Bistro 11244 104 Ave. (Oliver Square) 780-757-2426 Cibobistro.com Tues. to Fri. 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. Sat. 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. Closed Sun. and Mon. Dinner for two, excluding tip and beverages: basic, $80; loaded, $170 Food: 4.5 of 5 Suns Ambience: 4 of 5 Suns Service: 4 of 5 Suns By GRAHAM HICKS Question of the day: After six years under executive chef and partner Rosario Caputo, should Cibo Bistro (in Oliver Square, just off the downtown) be considered one of the Top 10 restaurants in Edmonton? I hate to say ‘on the one hand’, or ‘yes but’, or ‘it depends’. But … it depends! If the criteria is primarily top quality, visual presentation and consistently excellent food, yes. But if inventiveness and innovation are high on your list, no. Chef Caputo is not in the business of being daring. He sticks to his knitting, being high-end Italian dining. The most exciting he gets is ox or pork cheeks. But that which emerges from ... Read the rest of entry »

Hicks' Weekly Dish: El Fogon Latino offering tasty, authentic Venezuelan fare By GRAHAM HICKS, first published Edmonton Sun, January 30, 2018

El Fogon Latino 8026 118 Ave. 780-756-8388 el-fogon-latino.com Food: 4 of 5 Suns Ambience: 2 of 5 Suns Service: 4 of 5 Suns Mon. to Sat. 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sun. 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Dinner for two, excluding beverages and tip: basic, $16; loaded, $40. This reviewer has a soft spot for mom ‘n’ pop restaurants, where there’s been no million-dollar redesign, no swishy menu, no college-aged servers in black skirts and high heels who know nothing about the food they are serving. Just mom and dad, with the kids (grown-up or teenagers) helping out. The food is authentic, simple and, if you’re lucky, incredibly tasty. So it is with the second new Venezuelan/Latino restaurant in town. El Fogon Latino is on 118 Avenue, where many family-run ethnic eateries are born. Kevin Goncalves and his poppa Antonio Marcelino run the front and back of El Fogon, which in Spanish means the family hearth, as in an old-fashioned, outdoor, wood-burning oven. I’m sure there’s a momma somew ... Read the rest of entry »

Hicks' Weekly Dish: Hot time for hot dogs! By GRAHAM HICKS, first published Edmonton Sun, January 23, 2018

Montreal Hot Dogs 10503 104 Ave. (Quest Condo Tower) 780-909-4878 montrealhotdogs.ca Mon. to Thurs. 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Fri. 11 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. Sat. 10:30 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. Sun. 10:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. Dinner for two, excluding tip and beverages: basic, $15; loaded, $30 Food:  3.5 of 5 Suns Ambience: 3 of 5 Suns Service: 3 of 5 Suns *** Mayday Dogs 10359B 104 St. (Mercer Building) 587-989-5456 maydaydogs.com Tues. to Sat. noon to 8 p.m. (closed Sun. and Mon.) Dinner for two, excluding tip and beverages: basic, $15; loaded, $40 Food:  4 of 5 Suns Ambience: 4 of 5 Suns Service: 3.5 of 5 Suns Two new hot dog shops, but still no great hot dog wieners! Within weeks of each other, two hot dog emporiums have opened, one block from each other, within spitting distance of Rogers Place. Both start with a traditional wiener in a bun. Surprisingly, both have only one standard wiener. That’s where the similarity ends. Their toppings are from different planets. Montreal Hot ... Read the rest of entry »
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