October 2

DSC_0458Want to tell your chenins from your chards? Or learn why some wines taste like vanilla and others like butter? Learn to taste like a pro in a Wine Spirit Education Trust (WSET) program, taught in 58 countries, and in Edmonton by Natasha Susylinski and Mary Bailey. There are a few spots available in the introductory Level I Foundation class beginning Monday, October 7 (new low price!), and the Intermediate Level II class beginning Tuesday, October 8. For more info and to register visit the website or email the registrar alandon@aii.edu.

Support Alberta Ballet simply by going to dinner. Enjoy the Madame Butterfly menu at Wildflower Grill (10009 107 Street, 780-990-1938) this week, until October 6. Enjoy four Japanese-inspired courses, such as this intriguing first course, Hokkaido squash crème with lotus and truffle, along with wine pairings for $85/per person, which includes a donation to Alberta Ballet. Don’t miss it!

BVhZvPNCIAEOp7y.jpg-mediumCheck out Sunday family dinner at the Makk on 124 themakkon124.ca (10418 124 Street, 780 705-3710) starting this October 6. Make a reso for either the 5pm or 7pm seatings. Suit and tie and two perfect children are not required.

Learn to cook a turkey on the Big Green Egg at Hendrix (14515 118 Avenue, 780-454-0432) http://www.hendrixequip.com on October 5. Call to book.

Some people love spending a weekend cooking a turkey with all the trimmings for Thanksgiving dinner. Other people order the Sorrentino’s Holiday Bird, a beautifully roasted turkey redolent of fresh herbs, with a golden, crispy butter-basted skin, along with a pancetta/cranberry stuffing with orange, gravy, of course, and brandied cranberry sauce. Lots of sides available too—you can purchase pans of traditional mashed potatoes, balsamic glazed carrots or tiramisu. No muss, no fuss. Now, that’s a tradition we’d all love to start (stuffed turkey package feeds 10-12 people, $195+ GST). Visit www.sorrentinos.com to order.

Danny Schutz of Yellowhead Brewery.
Danny Schutz of Yellowhead Brewery.

Yellowhead Brewery serves the wurst lunch in town. Yup, that’s right, wurst as in sausage, as in their top-notch house-made bratwurst. Along with brats, try their really good potato salad, not too creamy (chef Danny Schutz’ family recipe). Their pretzel is not as chewy nor as salty as a Bavarian, but equally as delish served with a mustardy butter, or was that a buttery mustard? Terrific spot for lunch and it’s only $10. Yellowhead Brewery, 10229 105 Street, 780-423-3333.

Get your glow on! Sherwood Park resident Marnie Ashcroft opens Glow’s first retail location in Whitemud Crossing, October 10. What is different about Glow juices? They are fresh, unpasteurized, made-from-scratch from (mostly) home grown ingredients. “We are working with several local vegetable growers and brokers to supply carrots, greens, and cucumbers,” says Marnie. Find Glow at Urban Organics in Sherwood Park, Healthworks Nutrition Centre, as well as the new location, inside Barre Body Studio 184, 4211106 Street, 780-758-2773.

Culinaria, an upcoming exhibit at the Bruce Peel Special Collections Library (basement of Rutherford Library South, University of Alberta), includes a print and online exhibit of early 20th-century western Canadian cookbooks. Kristine Kowalchuk and grad student Caroline Lieffers curated the exhibit, and their research has led them to believe that “there were some crazy recipes in those books.” Kristine focused on community cookbooks, the most commonly printed prairie cookbook in the first half of the 20th century. It’s probably not much of a surprise to discover that rhubarb dishes and pickle recipes were popular. On the other hand the saskatoon was not considered worth eating. So, if you’re looking for an old-timey recipe for saskatoon pie, better ask your mother. The exhibit runs from October 10 through February 7, 2014. For more information visit the website.

18764a36b4The Pan Tree Kitchen (220 Lakeland Drive, Sherwood Park, 780-417-3340) has some fabulous new culinary gadgets in stock. Wusthof Xline knives are made in Solingen, Germany from a single piece of stainless steel, beautiful in the hand. The hi-tech transparent ceramic coating protects and makes for easy cleaning, $169-$249. The All-Clad Weeknight pan is ideal for sautéing, simmering and braising everyday meals. It will become essential in your kitchen. $279. The easy to use Gefu Spiral Slicer juliennes strips of carrot, radish, zucchini or cucumber in a flash, perfect for stir-fries and pasta dishes, $34.95.

Enjoy these upcoming tastings at Aligra Wine & Spirits (Suite 1423, Phase III, West Edmonton Mall, 780-483-1083) October 9, Magnifi-Zins Zinfandel, and on October 23, Malbec Smackdown with sommeliers Stacey Jo Strombecky and Ken Bracke.

Another Scotsman pays a visit to our fair city, Stewart Buchanan, brand ambassador, The BenRiach Distillery, Thursday, October 17, 7pm at Vines of Riverbend (2331 Rabbit Hill Rd, 780-434-9444). Tickets $40/person, call to book.