Saturday, August 23, 2014

Van Dusen 1st Annual Garden Party

August 23, 2014

Further from my previous promo post, I attended the Garden Party and am most happy to report on the following:

The feeding station (lineup was long!)

Fully stocked @ the beginning, but the food went insanely quick thereafter

Turkey on corn bread w Okanagan goat cheese mousse, arugula jalapeno gel - 2

J's comment > corn bread dry, very crumbly, despite that I like it though; could have used a lot more turkey; gel was delish though, sweet and not too spicy

Cubed hams on brioche - 2

J's comment > cubes of ham quite tasty, but could have used a lot more ham; brioche soft but could have been more moist; FYI, this wasn't on the menu, methinks the ham in the choux migrated onto this dish

Smoked salmon sushi square w fresh dill, wasabi cream cheese, crispy nori - 2

J's comment > rice OK, not dry, a tad too much rice to smoked salmon but salmon flavor still shone through; didn't get much of the wasabi but the cream cheese definitely made a guest appearance; nori wasn't crispy

Coronation chicken w raisin chutney, Madras chicken, almond crunch - 2

J's comment > chicken was OK, flavors were good, chutney a nice touch; bread was incredibly hard dry though, practically a piece of cardboard

Albacore tuna 'nicoise' cherry tomato, egg, olive & caper tapenade - 2

J's comment > overall slightly dry (esp the bread), but decent amt of tuna

Prosciutto & cantaloupe w goat cheese, pistachios, honey - 2

J's comment > your avg prosciutto wrapped cantaloupe ball w a balled goat cheese

Deviled ham choux w celery, dijon aioli, candied pecan - 2

J's comment > didn't get any of the listed ingredients at all; just balls of dough, slightly fluffy but not particularly outstanding in anyway

Cartems' mini earl grey donuts - 2+

J's comment > loved these baby donuts! even better than the whole sized ones! very soft w a delicate balance of the earl grey and sugar icing flavors

Citrus meringue tarts w citrus curd, baked meringue, sweet butter tart shell - 2

J's comment > your avg lemon meringue tart

Mini caramelized cheesecake - 2

J's comment > cheese flavor could have been (a lot) stronger; texture slightly denser than I like my cheesecakes to be (soft and creamy)

Chocolate orange cups w chocolate orange ganache, candied orange peel, chocolate tulip shell - 2

J's comment > very rich and creamy chocolate, definite orange flavors

Macarons - 2

J's comment > tried the green (pistachio), cream (vanilla) and pink (strawberry) ones; flavors OK, as advertised; texture of macarons OK, not too airy

Scone - 2

J's comment > warm for sure, but I think these were reheated on site as opposed to literally coming-out-of-the-oven  'freshly baked'; soft and not too dry; absolutely divine w the clotted cream and jams

Blueberries w maple mascarpone cream, mint - 2

J's comment > blueberries OK; cream decent but could have used a lot more, no maple flavor at all; mint sprig surprisingly quite minty

What one of each item from the above photos look like


Beverage tent

Stella Artois - 2

J's comment > not too strong, easy to drink

French Connection cocktail: Lillet Rose, passionfruit juice, sugar syrup, soda - 2

J's comment > more juice than Lillet Rose, but then again the Lillet Rose's light flavors make it too easy to blend; BTW, this was exactly what one drink ticket got me, so you could choose either a cocktail or a Stella Artois; Evian water was on site for $3

The champagne that was available for purchase, Pierre Jouet Brut ($150) or Pierre Jouet Bella Epoque ($275); bummer... I thought you got at least one glass included in the price of the ticket

Pure Leaf: Lemon - 2

J's comment > your avg lemon tea, slightly sweet, not too sour

Pure Leaf: Unsweetened - 2

J's comment > Pure Leaf definitely nailed the 'unsweetened' part...

Rows of cars for sample seating by Miles End Motors

Human statues - literally; BTW, there were other performers on site too, but I didn't get pics of them, eg. a juggler, crystal ball performer - like this guy, and a painter (?) that was staring more than painting on his board

The croquet lawn...

... and from the other side

So I wanted to play croquet, but in my eagerness to snap pics of the food (my first stop, duh...) the slots were all filled by the time I got there! :(

The trophy!

Croquet rules

Pretty floral headbands for purchase

Picnic blankets were provided if you wanted to sit on the grass; the grass was wet, but the blanket provided adequate protection

Labels: event, oak, sponsored

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