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Category: Weekly Dish columns from The Edmonton Sun

Weekly Dish columns from The Edmonton Sun

Hicks' Weekly Dish: Drunken Ox Sober Cat — reimagining the steakhouse By GRAHAM HICKS, first published Edmonton Sun, September 11, 2018

An unusual and delicious treatment of brussels sprouts and pancetta. Photos by GRAHAM HICKS/EDMONTON SUN DOSC (Drunken Ox Sober Cat) 10190 104 St. 780-540-0606 Dosc.ca Reservations: opentable.ca Seven days a week, Mon. to Wed.  7 a.m. to 12 midnight Thurs. 7 a.m. to 1 a.m. Fri. 7 a.m. to 2 a.m. Sat. 8 a.m. to 2 a.m. Sun. 9 a.m. to 12 midnight No listed delivery service Food:  4.5 of 5 Suns Ambience: 4.5 of 5 Suns Service: 4 of 5 Suns Dinner for two without tip, taxes or beverages: Basic, $40; loaded $100 By GRAHAM HICKS DOSC (which should be named Drunken Ox Sober Cat – see below) is a wonderful addition to the city’s dining scene. In a historic building on 104 Street a block north of Jasper, DOSC is full of aesthetically pleasing design, ambience and theatrics.  All is meticulously assembled into an eclectic, harmonious whole. DOSC is loaded with atmosphere. The food is near original – the notion of a “craft steakhouse” is bri ... Read the rest of entry »

Hicks' Weekly Dish: Go foraging for Sorrentino’s 24th Mushroom Harvest By GRAHAM HICKS, first published Edmonton Sun, September 4, 2018

Porcini mushroom sauce and crimini mushrooms deepen this grilled beef rib feature at the Sorrentino's Mushroom Harvest. Photos by GRAHAM HICKS/EDMONTON SUN All Sorrentino’s Restaurants Sorrentinos.com (Please check website for hours and addresses of individual restaurants) Food:  4 of 5 Suns Dinner for two without tip or beverages: Basic, $40; loaded $70 By GRAHAM HICKS It ‘s a chilly 6C outside and overcast. Daybreak didn’t peep through the bedroom blinds until 7 a.m  The garden tomatoes remain stubbornly green. The Eskimos lost, once again, the Labour Day Classic  Much as one mourns the passing of endless sunlight, wasps and evening thunder clouds, it’s time for heartysoul-warming comfort foods. The greatest of these are mushrooms. The Rago family’s Sorrentino Italian restaurant chain – Downtown, South-Side, West End, St. Albert, Stony Plain, Little Italy and Bistecca – began its autumn mushroom-based festival menu 24 y ... Read the rest of entry »

Hicks' Weekly Dish: Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. – Quality within quantity By GRAHAM HICKS, first published Edmonton Sun, August 28, 2018

Some 20 shrimp variations are to be found at the Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. in West Edmonton Mall, including these delicious coconut shrimps. Photos by GRAHAM HICKS/EDMONTON SUN Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. Second Level, West Edmonton Mall – overlooking Santa Maria, below Cineplex Scotiabank Theatre complex 780-244-4867 Bubbagump.com 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days a week, Fri. and Sat. to 11 p.m. No listed delivery service Food:  4 of 5 Suns Ambience: 4 of 5 Suns Service: 4 of 5 Suns Dinner for two without tip or beverages: Basic, $40; loaded $70 By GRAHAM HICKS Stating the obvious … but if you don’t like shrimp, don’t go to Bubba Gump’s! Actually, that’s not true. While 20 shrimp variations are on the menu, also for the eating are chicken wings, chowder, salads, fish and chicken sandwiches, burgers, ribs, steak, crab legs and a decent selection of other fish dishes – fish ‘n’ chips, mahi-mahi, salmon, flounder and tilapia. The new re ... Read the rest of entry »

Hicks' Weekly Dish: Vintage Fork — inelegance within elegance By GRAHAM HICKS, first published Edmonton Sun, August 21, 2018

The Vintage Fork lunchtime "Butler Steak" and vegetables. Photos by GRAHAM HICKS/EDMONTON SUN Vintage Fork 11153 Saskatchewan Drive, Rutherford House, University of Alberta 780-427-4113 Vintagefork.ca Tues, to Fri. 9 am to 5 pm Sat. and Sun. 9:30 am to 5 pm closed Mondays Reservations accepted, parking out front No listed delivery service Food:  4 of 5 Suns Ambience: 3 of 5 Suns Service: 2 of 5 Suns Lunch for two without tip or beverages: $40 to $60, depending on the day of the week By GRAHAM HICKS There’s a Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde aspect to Vintage Fork, the lunch/tea house on the main floor of the University of Alberta’s historic Rutherford House. On the one hand, the food is very good. The reviews on Google, Yelp etc. have been generally positive. On the other, serious criticism has been voiced by food bloggers about slow and inattentive service. On our noon visit, sadly, Mr. Hyde was running the shop. Despite the small number of diners — one party of ... Read the rest of entry »

Hicks' Weekly Dish: Café Linnea sparkles in the evening By GRAHAM HICKS, first published Edmonton Sun,

Heaven on Earth: Cafe Linnea's buttery fois gras on a doughnut, topped with peach. PHOTOS BY GRAHAM HICKS/EDMONTON SUN Café Linnea 10932 119 St. (Holland Plaza) 780-758-1160 Cafelinnea.com Wed. to Sat. 10 am to 2 pm, 5 pm to 10 pm (Saturday opening 9 am) Sunday brunch, 9 am to 2 pm Closed Mondays Reservations accepted No listed delivery service Food:  4 of 5 Suns Ambience: 4.5 of 5 Suns Service: 4.5 of 5 Suns Dinner for two, excluding tip and beverages: basic, $50; loaded $85 By GRAHAM HICKS There’s something special about Café Linnea in its re-purposed warehouse space, with clean Scandinavian design, natural light, splendid air quality and a parade of greenery separating the bar from the diners. Café Linnea is an oasis of calm and quality. If music is in the background, it’s so blended into the ambience as to be unnoticeable. How wonderful to hear every word spoken by one’s dining companions. Cafe Linnea’s Scandinavian design loa ... Read the rest of entry »

Hicks' Weekly Dish: Wilfred's is delish! By GRAHAM HICKS, first published Edmonton Sun August 7, 2018

A singularly delicious 9 oz. beef patty was within Wilfred's burger. Wilfred’s 10429 121 St. (Brewery District) 780-757-7009 Wilfreds.com 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. Closed Mondays Reservations accepted No listed delivery service Food:  4.5 of 5 Suns Ambience: 4.5 of 5 Suns Service: 4 of 5 Suns Dinner for two: basic, $30; loaded $50 By Graham Hicks The late, great Bruce Wells, executive chef at the Homefire Grill and Café Orleans, always taught his apprentices this beautiful lesson. If one fresh herb does the trick, don’t toss in a bunch more. Keep the kitchen sink out of your soups. Avoid those last three shakes of salt, they’re not needed. Keep your recipes clean, keep them simple. As we enjoyed a superb dinner in the airy new Wilfred’s in the Brewery District, I couldn’t help but be reminded of Bruce’s dictum. Each dish from the small, casual dinner menu was fresh, clear and clean. The cauliflower and potato soup came to the table smooth, sil ... Read the rest of entry »

Hicks' Weekly Dish: Halley's Club at West Edmonton Mall ushers in the return of dining 'n' dancing By GRAHAM HICKS, first published EDMONTON SUN July 31, 2018

Halley's Club hostess Liz Obonebinja brings a Roaring '20s look to the dine 'n' dance establishment. Photos by GRAHAM HICKS/EDMONTON SUN Halley’s Club Starlight Casino, West Edmonton Mall Entrance 9 (second floor), 8882-170 St. 587-460-2428 Halleysclub.com Thurs. to Sat. 6 p.m. to 2 a.m. Food:  4 of 5 Suns Ambience: 4.5 of 5 Suns Service: 4 of 5 Suns Dinner for two: basic, $50; loaded $80 By GRAHAM HICKS Who would have foreseen the return of the “classic” dine ‘n’ dance club to Edmonton? In an era of clatter, small plates and bar-counter informal dining, Halley’s Club stands out like a sore thumb. A beautiful sore thumb! The massive ballroom-sized club in West Edmonton Mall is strangely beautiful, windowless with the highest of ceilings, all curtains and booths, polished wood and brass, some 270 seats. Halley’s Club is part of the massive conversion of the mighty mall’s former Palace Casino/Jubilations Dinner Theatre/Rum Jungle ... Read the rest of entry »

Hicks' Weekly Dish: Reviewing a Taste of Edmonton BY GRAHAM HICKS, first published EDMONTON SUN July 24, 2018

At Taste of Edmonton, Kevin Kao prepares the Loma House sweet potato balls dessert. (GRAHAM HICKS/EDMONTON SUN)Edmonton The big news at this year’s Taste of Edmonton Festival, running through Sunday, isn’t about the food but about the venue. When the city temporarily converted Churchill Square into a staging depot for LRT construction, festivals using the square had to seek out new digs. With a little arm-twisting from Edmonton cabinet minister Brian Mason, the provincial bureaucrats reluctantly turned over the new, beautiful Capital Plaza just north of the Legislative Grounds to the food-eating, wine and beer consuming unwashed masses … who happen to own the space. It worked! On the “Taste Piazza” (Capital Plaza itself), festivalgoers can move around with alcoholic beverages, ice cream and summer drinks in hand —  no more do-not-leave beer gardens. The space has been discovered, with what’s likely to be record attendance by Sunday. Just off Ca ... Read the rest of entry »

Hicks' Weekly Dish: Volcano — there's reason for lack of recognition By GRAHAM HICKS, first published EDMONTON SUN July 17, 2018

Dragon's Eye maki roll. Volcano Japanese-Vietnamese Restaurant 4226 Gateway Blvd. 780-756-2218 Volcanoedmonton.com Delivery: SkipTheDishes.com Sun. to Thurs. 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. Fri. and Sat. 9 a.m. to 2 a.m. Food:  2.5 of 5 Suns Ambience: 3 of 5 Suns Service: 2.5 of 5 Suns Dinner for two, excluding drinks and tip: basic, $20; loaded $40 By GRAHAM HICKS Oh dear. As a restaurant reviewer, I read social media restaurant reports, check with friends in the hospitality business, monitor dining-out blogs such as Sharon Yeo’s OnlyHereForTheFood.com. Because noteworthy new restaurants in this town are quickly recognized.  Conversely, hundreds of restaurants initially aspiring to high culinary standards are ignored. They don’t live up to their hype. Last week, we took younger friends out to dinner. I was looking for a south-side eatery that was quasi-trendy, had visual and culinary style, and a menu with something for everybody. The pickings were thin. The Weekly Dish ... Read the rest of entry »

Hicks' Weekly Dish: The Captain's Boil is a big, happy surprise By GRAHAM HICKS, first published EDMONTON SUN July 10, 2018

Hello there, Mr. Crayfish! Crayfish from The Captain's Boil at South Edmonton Common. GRAHAM HICKS/EDMONTON SUN The Captain’s Boil Edmonton South Edmonton Common 2051 98 St. 780-485-8756 thecaptainsboil.com No delivery service,  online ordering with store pick-up Mon. to Thurs. 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Fri. and Sat. 11 a.m. to 12 a.m. Sun. 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Food:  4 of 5 Suns Ambience: 4 of 5 Suns Service: 4 of 5 Suns Dinner for two: basic, $30; loaded $60 By GRAHAM HICKS The Captain’s Boil is a big, happy surprise. I am never one to trust franchise-restaurant operations. There’s no chef in the kitchen, no creativity at the table, usually just a franchise owner taking all orders from head office. But this Captain’s Boil – a rapidly growing Canadian franchise with some 30 restaurants across the country — is different. It’s fun, it’s shockingly different, the seafood is quite delicious, and very, very well-priced. The overall ... Read the rest of entry »
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