Posted on Aug 17, 2010 under Archives |
Pan Pacific Hotel at Canada Place
On my last trip to Vancouver to visit my dad (and do a story for lowfares.com), I was lucky enough to get to visit the Five Sails restaurant located in the Pan Pacific Hotel at Canada Place. The restaurant is owned by husband and wife team Chef Ernst Dorfler and Gerry Sayers. Five Sails restaurant diners enjoy panoramic harbor and mountain views as well as seafood focused delicacies on the AAA Five Diamond menu. Highlights of the fresh Northwest/Asian fusion cuisine include soy glazed sablefish, rack of lamb and roasted breast of duck.
View from outside of Pan Pacific Hotel
My friend, and my dad’s wife, Lynda joined me for a really good tasting menu from owner and Chef Ernst Dorfler. Here’s what we had.
Trio of foie gras
We started with a lovely trio of foie gras. I loved this as I can’t get enough foie gras. This is labeled “Foie Gras – Yin and Yang” on the menu and it is spectacular.
Foie gras number 1
This version was traditional, with a nice petal and gold leaf topping.
Foie gras number 2
Equally good was the middle selection on the plate, plated with fruit compote and toasted brioche. Yum.
Foie gras number 3
Our third version was a pan seared foie gras with caramelized mango and a port wine reduction. I could eat this all day. If you like foie gras, this is the dish to order. This was served with a Armajan des Ormes 2003 Sauternes from France. A terrific pairing.
Duo of scallops
Next came a delicious duo of fresh big juicy scallops, glazed with mirin, capers, lemon and shallots. They sat on a celeriac mousseline scented with vanilla bean and a carrot reduction. This was expertly paired with a Laurenz V. Singing Gruner Veltliner, 2007, Niederosterreich from Australia.
View from our table
I have to mention something about the view. Five Sails looks over the harbor, Stanley Park and the Vancouver coastal mountains. This, as well as the exceptional food, is a huge draw and a great choice for a first date, celebration, or just as an excuse to get out and enjoy a great meal with beautiful surroundings. When we went in early June it was typical dreary Vancouver weather but if you can dine here in mid summer around sunset it is truly spectacular. Okay, enough about the view and back to the food.
One of the signature dishes at Five Sails is the homemade Austrian style mountain ravioli, which we were lucky enough to get to try. It is filled with spinach, herbs and ricotta cheese and served with hazelnut brown butter. It was paired with a Matua Shingle Peak Sauvignon Blanc, 2008, from Marlborough New Zealand.
Our last course before dessert was this yummy lamb, cooked perfectly, served with a fresh mint aioli, honey glazed artichokes and vegetables, and crispy yam wafers. We really loved this dish. It was paired with a glass of Therapy Merlot, 2008 from Naramata Canada.
Valrhona chocolate opera slice
Our dessert was a chocolate delight, a valrhona chocolate opera slice with caramel ice cream.
It was served with a lovely Inniskillin Riesling 2006 Ice Wine, very popular in Canada, from Oliver.
Lynda and me at Five Sails
We loved both the view and the food. I highly recommend making a stop at Five Sails if you happen to visit Vancouver. It’s a short walk from gastown, located on the R level at the Pan Pacific Hotel at Canada Place. Reservations are recommended, 604/844-2855.
Posted on Aug 17, 2010 under Archives, Chefs, Interviews |
Chef Ernst Dorfler and Gerry Sayers, owners of Five Sails Restaurant, Vancouver
On my last trip to Vancouver, I visited the Five Sails restaurant at the top of the Pan Pacific Hotel. The restaurant has amazing views and equally amazing food, which I got to sample in a fabulous tasting menu. I also got to sit down with owner and Chef Ernst Dorfler to talk a bit about his food. Our interview is below.
Chef Ernst Dorflers’ diverse career began when he left his home in Sirnitz, Austria at the age of fifteen to become an apprentice at the Four Star Trattlerhof Hotel in Bad Kleinkirchheim. Armed with formal French and Swiss training Ernst left to see the world, enriching his cultural and gastronomic experience in Germany, Switzerland, South Africa and Canada.
Dorfler’s Canadian culinary adventures have taken him from the East to the West Coast. He commenced his Canadian “tour” at the Quebec Hilton in Quebec City, followed by the Westin Hotel, Waldens Restaurant and the Four Seasons Hotel in Edmonton and eventually bringing him to Vancouver in 1988 as Executive Chef of the Five Diamond, Pan Pacific Hotel.
From 1981 to 1992 Ernst competed in the culinary arts locally, nationally and internationally achieving over 30 gold medals. He has been proud to represent Canada at seven international culinary events and was a member of the acclaimed Canadian Culinary Olympic Championship Team in 1992, achieving the highest honor of gold medal for best overall team/country at the World Culinary Olympics in Frankfurt, Germany.
Chef Dorfler has continued to win praise and accolades from Vancouverites and visitors to the Five Sails Restaurant and the Pan Pacific Vancouver – both of which have been consistently recognized with the AAA Five Diamond designation since 1990.
Posted on Aug 07, 2010 under Archives, Las Vegas |
Encore's Beach Club
The hottest parties in Las Vegas aren’t at the nightclubs. They’re now by the pools. Anyone deprived of spring break shenanigans in college can make up for lost time at any of Vegas’ latest indulgence – the ultra pool. Many resorts have recently added opulent swimming areas each with a distinct personality catering to an adult crowd. Here is a round up of the latest splashiest scene.
Encore Beach Club
At 60,000 square feet, Steve Wynn’s new Encore Beach Club is larger than the combined square footage of XS Nightclub (40,000), Tryst (10,000) and Blush (4,000) at the Wynn properties. The venue features three tiered pools, daybeds and 26 cabanas with refrigerators and flat screen TVs. Eight luxurious bungalows include balconies overlooking the Las Vegas strip, each with a private bathroom, shower and Jacuzzi.
Guests can also play blackjack at air-conditioned poolside open-air tables. Encore Beach Club is the first pool venue to offer sunbathers air conditioning outside.
Encore's Beach Club
Whether guests choose to soak up the scene at the newest pools, go all in at waterside casinos or dare to be bare at an adults-only retreat, the resorts at City Center are the place to dive into summer fun.
Aria Resort pool
ARIA Resort and Casino houses three distinctive pools and hot tubs. Lavish cabanas include 42” LCD televisions, iPod docks and WiFi Internet access. The Liquid Pool Lounge offer an adults-only experience with a state-of-the-art sound system and world class DJ’s. Liquid’s 1,200 main pool is surrounded by 85 chaise lounges and 35 daybeds, while two separate private pools boasts uber-VIP private cabanas.
The Vdara Hotel and Spa 40,000 square foot features phenomenal views of City Center, chaise lounges, plush daybeds and cabanas. Massages, made-to-order cocktails and gourmet tapas can be ordered poolside.
Mandarin Oriental Pool at City Center
Mandarin Oriental’s stylish 8th floor pool deck houses two lap pools, a plunge pool, Jacuzzis and pool butlers that provide guests with towels, ice, drinks and snacks. Poolside cabanas offer fresh fruit, sun care amenities and flat screen televisions. The Pool Café offers Asian inspired dishes as well as salads and light snacks.
Fortuna pool at Caesars
Caesars Palace Garden of the Gods
Caesars Palace’s new five acre Garden of the Gods pool oasis features eight swimming pools, an 18-foot waterfall and swim-up blackjack tables. Forty-four new private cabanas include flat screen televisions, DVD players, iPod docking station, wireless Internet access and plush furniture. Caesars Palace Spa offers a variety of pampering services poolside including sun tan lotion application, massages and body scrubs. The Garden of the Gods pools are situated on three levels at the heart of the resort and allow guests to find their own pool experience, from those looking to socialize and connect at the stylish new Fortuna Bar to those who want to enjoy a relaxing quiet massage at the Jupiter pool area or partygoers who want to swim to the latest sounds by resident and guest DJ’s at the Venus Pool Club.
Caesar's Palace pool area
Hard Rock HRH Beach Club
The new HRH Beach Club at the Hard Rock Hotel nearly doubles the pool vicinity to house five acres. Featuring an expansive pool area, sandy beach, 17 daybeds, 24 luxury cabanas, eight spa villas, swim-up blackjack and a gaming lounge. The spa offers manicures, pedicures and poolside services including deep tissue, Swedish and reflexology massages. The gaming area includes seven blackjack tables, a roulette wheel and one ice game. For those who want to play their favorite casino games such as video poker and slots in the comfort of a cabana, mobile gaming is also available.
Posted on Aug 07, 2010 under Uncategorized |
Sage at ARIA is one of the many restaurants participating in restaurant week
Las Vegas Restaurant Week kicks off at the end of this month, offering diners a unique opportunity to enjoy tastes of The Strip’s most popular establishments while raising money to feed the hungry. The event, featuring specially priced dinner menus at more than 50 participating restaurants, is August 30 – September 5. A selection of MGM Resorts International’s finest restaurants, as well as other Sin City restaurants will offer prix fixe menus at $20.10, $30.10 and $50.10 with a portion benefiting Three Square, a non-profit organization in Las Vegas working to end hunger in Southern Nevada.
The kick-off event will take place Monday, August 30 from 8 p.m. to midnight at WET REPUBLIC with booths and food stations from restaurants including Jean Georges Steakhouse, Shawn McClain’s Sage and L’Atelier de Joël Robuchon. Celebrity chef Hubert Keller will showcase his musical talents, spinning the hottest hits as special guest DJ during the party. Tickets to the event are $30.10 and can be used as a dining voucher to any participating MGM Grand restaurant during Restaurant Week.