Chefs Shine at #GoodFrance 2017

 

Chefs whose love of food dates back to their childhood brought their unique styles and passion for French cuisine to this year’s #GoodFrance global event on March 21. Chefs from more than 2000 restaurants in five continents prepared a multi-course dinner that paid homage to French cuisine. In Vancouver, Bistro Pastis, Le Crocodile and Save-On Meats participated.

I had the pleasure of dining at Bistro Pastis at French Consul General Jean-Christophe Fleury’s table, and enjoyed Chef Mike Mikoda’s #GoodFrance menu that reflected this young chef’s love for classical French dishes.

French Consul General Jean-Christophe Fleury hosted the #GoodFrance meal at Bistro Pastis - photo courtesy of the French Consulate

French Consul General Jean-Christophe Fleury hosted the #GoodFrance meal at Bistro Pastis – photo courtesy of the French Consulate

Chef Mike Mikoda of Bistro Pastis prepares Sole Normande, one of the featured dishes at the upcoming Good France event March 21 - photo by Cathy Browne

Chef Mike Mikoda of Bistro Pastis created a classic French menu for #GoodFrance – photo by Cathy Browne

We started with a light and savoury foie gras profiterole, followed by a colourful salad featuring house-smoked duck, pickled strawberries, frieze, and toasted brioche croutons.

Our first perfect bite at Bistro Pastis - a Foie Gras Parfait Profiterole. Photo by Cathy Browne

Our first perfect bite at Bistro Pastis – a Foie Gras Parfait Profiterole. Photo by Cathy Browne

The second course salad featured house-smoked duck and pickled strawberries - photo by Cathy Browne

The second course salad featured house-smoked duck and pickled strawberries – photo by Cathy Browne

I chose the Sole Normande as my main course – a delightful dish with sole on a cream sauce with a seafood medley, button mushrooms and topped with asparagus spears.

The Sole Normande featured a perfectly cooked filet on a cream sauce with a seafood medley, button mushrooms and asparagus spears - photo by Cathy Browne

The Sole Normande featured a perfectly cooked filet on a cream sauce with a seafood medley, button mushrooms and asparagus spears – photo by Cathy Browne

We then moved on to a cheese plate featuring a rustic camembert, an assertive blue, and a tome de savoie. All were complemented by a wine gel, whole grain mustard and crostini.

A classic cheese plate was complemented by a wine gel, grainy mustard and crostini - photo by Cathy Browne

A classic cheese plate was complemented by a wine gel, grainy mustard and crostini – photo by Cathy Browne

We ended the meal with Chef Mikoda’s favourite dessert – a classic creme caramel with berries and chantilly cream.

A classic creme caramel ended a delicious meal - photo by Cathy Browne

A luscious creme caramel ended a delicious meal – photo by Cathy Browne

Bistro Pastis pledged to donate five per cent of all sales to The Potluck Café Society, a registered non-profit organization and social enterprise that provides food, training and job opportunities for residents of Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside.

It was one of those nights when I wished I could have cloned myself. Across town at a packed Save-On Meats, another young and talented chef brought her unique approach to classic ingredients to her #GoodFrance menu as part of Save-On Meats’ Greasy Spoon Diner series.

A full house at Save-On Meats enjoyed Alison Ramage's #GoodFrance menu - photo courtesy of the French Consulate

A full house at Save-On Meats enjoyed Alison Ramage’s #GoodFrance menu – photo courtesy of the French Consulate

Chef-owner of Design to Dine, Alison Ramage grew up where the kitchen was truly the heart of her home. “My mom and dad were both awesome cooks,” she said. Our lives revolved around good food. I knew I wanted to work with food from a very early age.” For her #GoodFrance menu, she turned to the region of Alsace, with its French-German influences, for her inspiration.

I caught Chef Ramage in action preparing her first course, Tart Flambée – a flatbread composed of caramelized onions, mustard and munster cream with kale and escarole salad.

Chef Alison Ramage and her team developed the #GoodFrance menu for Save-On Meats - photo by Cathy Browne

Chef Ramage looked to Alsace for her inspired #GoodFrance menu for Save-On Meats – photo by Cathy Browne

Chef Alison Ramage's flatbread starter - photo by Cathy Browne

Chef Alison Ramage’s flatbread starter – photo by Cathy Browne

Next, the diners enjoyed a main course of Choucroute Garnie – smoked sausage, Reisling fermented cabbage, spaetzle and brown butter cream.

The main course at Save-On Meats -Choucroute Garnie – smoked sausage + Reisling fermented cabbage + Spaetzle + brown butter cream. Photo courtesy of the French Consulate

The main course at Save-On Meats – Choucroute Garnie featuring smoked sausage, Reisling fermented cabbage, spaetzle and brown butter cream. Photo courtesy of the French Consulate

And for dessert, apple strudel. I caught it fresh out of the oven.

Apple strudel fresh out of the oven rounded out Alison Ramage's menu at Save-On Meats - photo by Cathy Browne

Alsatian apple strudel fresh out of the oven rounded out Alison Ramage’s menu at Save-On Meats – photo by Cathy Browne

The final dessert plating - photo courtesy of the French Consulate

The final dessert plating – photo courtesy of the French Consulate

Funds raised by the Greasy Spoon Diner series support A Better Life Foundation (ABLF), which aims to empower those who are struggling with addictions and mental illness. By providing food security, education and employment training, ABLF supports individuals, while strengthening the quality of community life in the Downtown Eastside. A Better Life Foundation also supports the ongoing Being Hungry Sucks campaign.

 

Cathy Browne

About Cathy Browne

I’m a lifestyle, travel, and events photographer who just happens to be legally blind. I use my camera to capture and share things I don’t see.

I’m also a veteran PR gal and accessibility advocate. I love the West Coast, and I’m proud to call Vancouver home.

I love everything Apple, writing, photo-walking, travel, food and wine, hot sake, politics, my cats, CBC Radio, trivia and hugs.

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