January 3

The Tomato Top 100 Best Things to Eat or Drink

What’s the best thing you ate or drank in Edmonton last year? Tell us about your favourite; we’ll add it to our list of the 100 best things to eat in Edmonton and enter your name to win fabulous prizes from local businesses.

The best thing you ate or drank could be: a restaurant dish, a farmers’ market specialty, a product from your favourite local farmer, a snack food, a condiment, or a cool cocktail from in and around the Capital region.

Enter on Facebook. Like us for an extra entry!

Tweet @tomatofooddrink and use the hashtag #tomatotop100. Email us at tomatotop100@telus.net.

Or, we’re happy to receive a letter in the post. Send to 9833 84 Avenue, Edmonton AB, T6E 2G1.

The Tomato Top 100 Best Things to Eat or Drink will be featured in the March/April issue of The Tomato. Enter to win by January 25.

TestKitchen_300x250Introducing the Tomato Test Kitchen

Have you ever made a recipe that didn’t turn out? Find a recipe that doesn’t work? Has missing ingredients? Or, is missing a method? That happens to us all the time! Which is why we develop the best recipes we can for each issue, and test the recipes sent to us by chefs and contributors. Now you can, too.

Participate in our new workshop, The Tomato Test Kitchen, Thursday, January 23. Learn the best techniques, plus tips and tricks from Tomato editor Mary Bailey and research chef Brad Smoliak of Kitchen by Brad.

The evening will be a hands-on preparation and cooking class with wine, prizes and giveaways, $125/pp. Questions? Email hello@thetomato.ca. Purchase tickets.

wineWant to know your Chablis from your Champagne?

Enroll in the French Wine Scholar program and taste your way through France, region by region. The course is designed for those seeking in-depth understanding of France’s amazing oenological diversity. Enjoy the camaraderie and the savings (in wine costs) of a group class. Classes are offered by the Art Institute of Vancouver and held at the Edmonton Petroleum club, with lots of parking! New format: weekly Monday night classes rather than full weekends, from January 13-March 24. Visit winecollege.ca to register.

We look forward to Daniel Costa’s new casual place on Jasper beside called Bar Bricco, taking its inspiration from the spuntino bars of Italy — small places to have a seat at the bar and “a plate of proscuitto, chicetti, little creative things, really good quality, yet a straightforward menu,” says Daniel.
“We’re focusing on sparkling, including Champagne and Cava, as part of an extensive good-value Italian list. We used the same architect again, Joe Johnson, Connect Architect. And, it’ll be dark, really dark.” Seats under 30, enjoy after work or late night, opening late January.

OlivTastingThe newest thing in olive oil is infused oils — we found some delicious ones at the new Oliv Tasting Room in Crestwood Shopping Centre, open Monday-Saturday, 10am – 7pm and Sunday, noon – 5pm. Handy that, you could pick up lunch at Care it Deli, wine at Crestwood Wines, oils and balsamic vinegars at Oliv and everything you need to set a beautiful table at Bella Casa. Sweet! OLiV, 9656 – 142 Street, 780-756-1600,

Madison’s Grill in the Union Bank Inn (10053 Jasper Avenue, 780-423-3600, presents the Love of Local Dinner in the lovely Vintage Room, featuring local producers Irvings, Doef’s, Sylvan Star Cheese and Mo-Na Foods in a savoury five-course menu by exec chef Charla Padilla, $85 plus tax and gratuity, Wednesday, January 29, 6:30pm reception.

Curtis Bawden, Pacific Wines and Spirits with Hugo Stabio, Luigi Bosca at Rocky Mountain Wine Experience.
Curtis Bawden, Pacific Wines and Spirits with Hugo Stabio, Luigi Bosca at Rocky Mountain Wine Experience.

Hugo Stabio, the saavy export director for Argentina’s Luigi Bosca, was a special guest at the Rocky Mountain Wine Festival. Luigi Bosca’s Malbecs are number one in Alberta, and we discovered that so many of their vineyards have been established for decades, yielding unique wines. For example, the 90 year-old Luján de Cuyo vineyard produces a field blend of Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon that is stunningly delicious. If you were thinking Argentina was only about Malbec, there are many more wines to discover.