special features - let's eat

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  • lets eat AGASSIZ HARRISON

    FALL 2014

    PREPARED BY:

  • Since Glennda Dafoe took over the restaurant space in the Ramada, there have been plenty of changes. The new sign reads Hot Springs Steakhouse, and with that change comes a new menu. Dafoes staff are learning new routines, the kitchen has become more effi cient, and things are looking up for the dining establishment.

    But one of the biggest changes is the atmosphere.

    We want people to know this is a family-oriented restaurant, Dafoe said, relaxing in the restaurant while the autumn rain drizzled out the front window. We make a lot of homemade food here, including hand-breaded chicken and hand-cut French fries

    with potatoes from Agassiz Produce.

    But as the name suggests, their signature dish is the best accompaniment to potatoes a good, hearty steak.

    They serve up 10 oz. Triple A sirloin, which they cut in house as well.

    This really is the place where mom and dad can come and have their steak, and the kids can have something healthier and you can feel good about it, she said. And it wont break the bank, either. Kids meals at the Hot Springs Steakhouse are all $5.

    There are still more changes in store, Dafoe said.

    Theyll be taking out the small stage and adding more relaxed seating in the window. The lighting will soon be updated, and some fresh colours on the walls will help complete the look.

    Dafoe has worked with the Boston Pizza franchise since she was a teenager, helping to launch and manage restaurants in locations around B.C. She and her husband are preparing for a move to Harrison Hot Springs, where Dafoe can focus all her energy on bringing that high level of service and restaurant management to a restaurant all her own.

    For current hours and further information, phone the main Ramada Inn line at 604-796-5555 and dial 3.

    Samir Chopra could very well be serving up the most eclectic menu on the beach strip. With everything from authentic weiner schnitzel to proper butter chicken, he describes the menu as fusion casual. And its a term he takes very seriously.

    My food is authentic, he said. Every dish.

    So when you order the schnitzel, its the same dish you may fi nd in Vienna. After all, its where Chopra lived for 26 years. But the same could be said for his butter chicken, which will taste more like the dish from India than a tempered Canadian version.

    That wouldnt surprise Chopras regular customers. Casual Harrison diners quickly fl ocked to his other restaurant, the Driftwood Kitchen, when he opened

    the doors last summer. Hes brought the same dedication to food into his new venture at the Red Fort. But he opened in the heat of the summer, and getting started was truly a trial by fi re.

    I had my head down for six weeks in the kitchen, he said, while he and his staff served hundreds of hungry diners a day. Many of his staff are young, and were inexperienced at the time. It was challenging, he admits, but they forged through. Now theyll take the slower fall season to refl ect on the summer, and to perfect their game.

    The team is growing together, and his young kitchen staff are learning how to plan and plate delicious meals from around the world.

    They were serving three hundred plus people a day, he said. Im so proud of them.

    Now that the hectic summer season is behind them, Chopra and his staff are looking forward to meeting with the locals and showing them the great selection and prices they offer. Red Fort boasts an impressive beer and wine list, serving up beers from local breweries as well as those from Austria.

    Theres a drink to go with any dish, and whether its a mile-high Red Fort Ultimate Burger, or a side of glazed chicken wings, there really is something for everyone.

    We are serving honest, simple food made with love and passion, he said.

    For information and daily hours, phone 604-491-5678.

    Hot Springs Steak House

    Red Fort Restaurant & Patio

    190 LILLOOET AVE., HARRISON HOT SPRINGS (604) 796-5555 EXT. 3

    234 ESPLANADE AVE., HARRISON HOT SPRINGS (604) 491-5678

  • When the new fall menu launches today at the Harrison Hot Springs Resort and Spa, it will include something for every diner. No one is going to be left out, said executive chef Kartik Kumar. There is something there for everyones individual taste. Kumar joined the resort as the head of the kitchen in August, taking on the role of managing 40 chefs, more than 80 wait staff, and 10 stewards. But its not a huge task for the world-traveled chef. He was most recently working at an upscale hotel in Gambia, but has managed and opened restaurants in Australia, Egypt, Singapore, Laos, Dubai and more.

    He opened the River Rock Casino in 2004, and was chef for the Gemini Awards in 2006. His life has revolved around planning, preparing and serving delicious food to people around the world. Even his wife, who currently lives in India, works with food as a master chocolate maker. I live food, Kumar said. I come from a family of very good chefs, from women who are very good chefs. And Im a very restless person. A rolling stone gathers no moss. But he plans on digging in some roots here in Harrison, and next time he travels, he says it will be on a holiday not for work. Hell continue pouring

    his knowledge and experiences from kitchens around the world into the kitchens at the resort, fi ne tuning the menus as the seasons change and customers crave new things. This fall, the Lakeside Cafe (on the second storey of the resort) will be holding buffets on weekends, with a Mediterranean theme on Fridays, Asian theme on Saturdays and South Asian theme on Sundays. Kumars fall menu will be unveiled today. Theres nothing unfamiliar but everything will be new, he said. For more information, or to reserve a table, visit www.harrisonresort.com, or call 604-796-2244

    Its offi cially autumn, and that means chefs are looking to the fall harvest for inspiration. For Jonathon Gee, executive chef for Pretty Estates Resort, that means taking advantage of all the wonderful foods that surround us. The pumpkins and squash are fantastic, he said, and they come from a place called Hole in the Clouds, just across from the resort on the Harrison River. For their salmon, Pretty Estates has partnered with Stsailes and Scowltiz communities and fi shers to bring local salmon directly to the plate. Weve got a bounty of all the local ingredients around us, Gee said. We

    really want to support everyone who is around us. With the best, freshest ingredients on hand, along with Gees love of creating comforting dishes, the fall menu is divine. With this menu, I really went back to the classics, he said. The bistro-style menu features dishes like Salmon Wellington and Beef Bourguignon. Customers are loving the salmon, delicately wrapped in a puff pastry, topped with a lemon dill cream. Each entre has had a wine selected for the perfect pairing, too. For the salmon, you may like the Chaberton Bacchus, for example. With the beef, perhaps the Amancaya Malbec.

    But it takes even more than great ingredients and beautiful presentation to keep a restaurant top-of-mind for diners. It takes hard work. Thats number one, Gee said. A lot of it is just staying true to what you believe in. Gee grew up in Rosedale, and graduated from Chilliwack Senior where he studied under Chef Reece. That included a one-year apprenticeship. He eventually earned the Red Seal certifi cate and worked many years as one of the chefs at another large resort. But he knew from a very young age that he wanted to be a chef.

    I used to make dinners for my mom when she came home from work, he said, learning how to put together Ukrainian dishes under the direction of his grandma. I always knew I wanted to be a chef, he said. Working so close to where he grew up was an easy choice. And the scenery from Rivers Edge is the perfect pairing to Gees classic menu, with the river fl owing by and colours of the leaves turning to deep reds and warm oranges. You couldnt ask for a better backdrop, he said. Open seven days a week. For more information visit www.prettyestateresort.com

    Harrison Hot Springs Resort & Spa

    Rivers Edge at Pretty Estates Resort

    100 ESPLANADE AVE., HARRISON HOT SPRINGS (604) 796-2244

    14282 MORRIS VALLEY RD., HARRISON MILLS 1-877-796-1001