Birthday feast at the House of Commons!

I was so lucky to confirm the newest and hottest underground dining experience for me and a group of folks to celebrate my birthday in true culinary style.
Jacob Sharkey-Pearce, our chef for the evening had started his career in the Terroni kitchens, helped shaped the menu at Centros and now is the executive chef cooking for our captain of the Raptors - Chris Bosh himself- and it was truly a magical dining experience and it was such a pleasure to have him cook for us!

My group of close friends and favourite foodies were all given instructions a few days prior to the dinner as well as a password to give at the door to this elusive space that was playing host to our dining experience.  As each of them arrived to the door with a red ribbon on it, they were greeted with a glass of sparkling organic cava (or non alcoholic substitute) and had the opportunity to mingle while the entire gang arrived.  Once we were seated, the festivities truly began with my friend Marcello playing the master of ceremonies of the evening and orchestrating speeches from my very good friends between the courses which was very entertaining and a big surprise.  I really thought that my friends had a good platform to roast me but they instead chose really endearing and touching memories to share and even though some were at my own expense - they were all clean and made everybody laugh and of course warmed my heart!
Now onto the food- there was a customized menu focusing on great local ingredients and some favourites... and of course poutine was one of the courses!!
To start - we had a wild red deer carpaccio and to prove how fresh it was, Chef Sharkey-Pearce let us know that the deer had been slaughtered only 4 days ago to which most of the gang reacted with a big gasp and a shudder at the fact that we were perhaps eating Bambi.  Regardless of that, it was brilliant, very fresh and tender and perfectly flavourful.  Even those who had second thoughts, they seemed to enjoy it.  However there was a substitution for those who were totally not about eating rare beef- which was a raw squash carpaccio- which was an interesting dish as I've never eaten squash raw.  It was crunchy but had a smooth and sweet taste of squash and friends who had this dish really enjoyed it.
The second dish explained by Chef Sharkey-Pearce is his way to get Chris Bosh to eat all the calories and protein he needs while catering to his tastes.  Apparently Bosh is very particular and so this is something he would get traditionally served- it was a salad with fresh Cookstown green's with shoots and edible flowers with a strawberry champagne vinaigrette.   It looked like a simple salad but had many textures, flavours and layers to it.  Each bite you took had a crunch to it or a sweetness that you didn't expect and I was pleasantly pleased with it.  The third dish was my absolute favourite which was POUTINE!!  The poutine was a shoestring potato and duck confit poutine and it was a fan favourite.  Apparently the kitchen had some issues with some grease and perhaps a fire and some fingers were burnt in the process of making this dish - but it was a full moon that night so stranger things could've happened!!  Optically though, execution was flawless, the gravy was so good and I was a very happy lady.  Right before this dish very fittingly, my good friend Kyla shared a memory of late night poutine-ing in her own kitchen in our youth and she showed off a scar that occurred when she pulled out her baking sheet too fast from the oven because we were so excited about our french fries... oh les memories!!
The fourth dish was a 16 hour slow smoked Rowe Farm's Beef rib that fell off the bone - it was a little cold when served but it definitely had an amazing flavour and was still very tender.  What can you expect- we were 28 people for dinner and they just had to deal with a grease fire!!!  For those who couldn't eat the meat - they were given an alternative of a chestnut stuffed ravoli.  I have to say I was surprised by the sweetness of the chestnuts and it was a velvety flavour as well which was very pleasing to my veggie's palettes!
For the finale- they served us a Kensington Market organic ice cream - it was sooooo sooo creamy and rich and exactly how an ice cream should be- packed full of flavour and decadent!
The night was just filled with amazing-ness and I would consider this one of my best meals ever not just because of the caliber of food but the company, atmosphere and general awesomeness of the entire experience.
A HUGE thank you to all participants in this.  As I say again and again, I am truly the luckiest girl on earth to have people like you guys around me in my life to share these experiences with.
Much love, xoxo
5 Stars- House of Commons (www.mabelgrey.ca)

Bookmark and Share

1 comment:

  1. that sounds so delicious.... i'm jealous :)