Elk & Oarsman Pub & Grill – Banff, Alberta

Every once in awhile we like to go into a local pub or bar for lunch. This time while traveling through Banff, we went and sat on the patio of Elk & Oarsman which was really nice. Although I don’t have a picture of the place, the view was phenomenon!

We sat down on this bring afternoon where I ordered myself a Virgin Caesar as it’s become a drink I love, especially if it’s spicy. It’s definitely spicy here with tons of flavour!

I ordered their Elk Poutine which was thick cut french fries with gravy, braised elk and cheese curds. A delicious combination of things I love! It was the perfect combination for this particular lunch! There was actually a lot of french fries in this order and we didn’t actually finish the entire plate – we did eat up all the elk though!

My husband ordered the Lamb Shank and it was a giant piece of braised lamb in Cabernet honey jus. It was tender, juicy and tasty! Although the picture doesn’t look as appetizing, it was a great piece of lamb shank!

Our overall experience here was phenomenal and it’s no wonder why they’re always so busy! They have great food and service and the location is ideal – right on Banff Ave!

Elk & Oarsman Pub & Grill on Urbanspoon

Elk & Oarsman Pub & Grill

119 Banff Avenue
Banff, AB
(403) 762-4616

Sun Chiu Kee in Calgary

We recently went back to Sun Chiu Kee or Sun’s BBQ Restaurant after awhile now as there has been so many new places to try. Sun Chiu Kee is a place I’ve always enjoyed going to and it’s great to return for dinner, instead of lunch.

We ordered a Lamb Hot Pot which was on their winter special menu, deep fried tofu with salted egg yolk, abalone mushroom veggie.

The order of the Lamb Shank Hot Pot came in a large wok of bubbling broth with some lettuce on the side. The broth was quite delicious, and the vegetables in the soup included carrots, leeks, dried bean curd – which is the “skin” of tofu when they make the tofu, and used in a lot of Chinese cooking. There was a dipping sauce that came with this dish, which was fermented bean curd, and they added honey into it. I thought that was really nice, as I normally add sugar when I make it at home. This was a great dish that they have on their winter menu as it was really hot (in temperature), and the meat was cooked to perfection. It just warms you right up – especially when you put the soup in your bowl with your rice.

Sun Chiu Kee - Lamb Hot Pot

The next dish that we ordered was Deep Fried Tofu with Salted Egg Yolks, and it wasn’t as flavourful as it can be, as this recipe is one where you can add a lot of flavour. When they made it here, it only had subtle salted egg yolk flavours. Salted Egg Yolks is actually from what we called Salted Duck Egg and it’s a ducks egg that is preserved in brine (salt water) and when you see it in the store, it is normally covered with a dark black layer of what looks like dirt. To use this egg, simply scrape off the layer and then rinse it under water – and then you’d use the egg in your cooking. This preserved egg has a denser and firmer consistency, and it holds its shape. So, to make this dish, they basically take that egg yolk and mash it up – cook it down with butter until it’s a thick sauce like consistency…. and of course, you deep fry your tofu and toss it in the sauce. It’s a great dish, but this time had a serious lack of flavour.

Sun Chiu Kee - Deep Fried Tofu

The last dish we had was a veggie dish, we ordered Abalone Mushroom with Gai Lan, and we ordered this because we needed vegetables! Gai Lan is also called Chinese Broccoli but I think it has more “bitter” taste, but cooked properly, it’s quite good!

Sun Chiu Kee - Abalone Mushroom with Gai Lan

I’ve been to Sun’s BBQ Restaurant for a late night dinner, and my experience was pretty good with the food. Be sure to read about me going to Sun Chiu Kee for late dinner!

Sage Bistro and Wine Lounge – Canmore, Alberta

Sage Bistro and Wine Lounge is a great place to go — whether you’re looking for a quiet place for dinner, and a nice place to gather and celebrate! It seems to have the ambiance to cover it all!!

We were lucky to be able to make reservations the same day, even though we had to compromise the time a little. I’m sure glad we did though! Our dinner here was really good, it’s always nice to have a great meal from start to finish.

I didn’t want an alcoholic drink, so I opted for Homemade Honey Thyme Lemonade which was really refreshing lemonade with a hint of honey and thyme. It was a perfect drink for the day as we spent the entire afternoon outdoors!

We started this great meal with duck rillettes, which was riesling braised duck confit, a small amount of lingonberry compote, topped with petite cornchon on grilled baguette. It was just amazing!! We piled a huge spoonful of duck confit on the tiny grilled baguette, then topped it off with the lingonberry compote (jam like) — and like a cherry on top, the little pickle! It was quite a memorable appetizer and one I’m still drooling over while thinking about it!

For the main, I had the special, which was a Maple Sockeye Salmon and that was excellent. The Salmon sat on top of a great chilled noodle salad filled with julienne vegetables. It was quite refreshing of a meal, and it tasted light! It’s something I wish I knew how to make!

The other dish we enjoyed thoroughly would be the Lamb Shank, where the lamb is braised in port & rosemary topped with gremolata with saffron risotto on the side.

Since everything has been so wonderful, we ordered a dessert to share as we were stuffed. We ordered the Neapolitan Tower which had layers of cinnamon phyllo squares, mixed berry compote and lemon custard cream. You really taste the great crisp texture of the phyllo squares which contracts really nicely with the lemon custard cream, which is probably mixed with the mixed berries as it tasted a lot like a raspberry mousse. Regardless, it was a wonderful dessert, and I wouldn’t mind to enjoy this meal again.

Sage Bistro

1712 Bow Valley Trail
Canmore, AB
(403) 678-4878