What We Love Now
Stories by Dee Raffo / Images By Joern Rohde
Classic Mountainside Tavern Comes
to the Upper Village
Imagine stepping into your cool uncle’s ski chalet. He passes you a cold, locally brewed beer, slices up an elk salami and arugula pizza he happens to have in the oven, and asks you about your day on the slopes. This is the atmosphere the new Braidwood Tavern at the Four Seasons Resort and Residences is designed to evoke: warm and welcoming, yet with an air of casual sophistication. The menu focuses on shareable mountainside tavern classics with a modern, local twist. Their green chili burger is made with Canadian-raised, grass-fed beef and topped with roasted poblano pimento cheese, served on a potato bun, and there’s the local Brohm Lake duck leg poutine, with pickled poblanos and topped with a fried duck egg.
“We’re very excited to be opening the Braidwood Tavern this winter,” says Josef Weichinger, Four Seasons director of food and beverage. “Along with the new food, which was created by renowned chef and restauranteur Richard Sandoval, we have some great craft beers on the taps, including two dark beers, a winter fruit sour, a barrel-aged beer, and our own house-brewed Bruce Brewsky.”
The beer your uncle passed you earlier was one of these, and you just know he’s on a first-name basis with the brewmaster. But you can’t stay on beers all evening, and the cocktails are just as inviting. You sip on a Chai Platano Mezcalita, crafted with Siete Misterios mezcal, banana liqueur, chai, lime, agave, and a dash of Malagasy chocolate bitters. At the same time, you take in the dramatic braided wood paneling, made from woven reclaimed pine, cedar, and spruce — could this be why your uncle calls it the Braidwood Tavern? You would ask him, but he’s busy whipping up the next craft cocktail and to be honest, you’re happy to let him.
604-966-5280 | braidwoodtavern.com
Legendary Restaurant Changes Hands
Jay and James Paré, the new owners and operators of Quattro, are a passionate uncle-and-nephew team. They grew up working in Whistler’s restaurants, learning the frantic but fun ways of the food-and-beverage world with the dream of one day having their own place. It’s a dream that was fulfilled in 2013 when they took over Caramba! Restaurant, and again this past November with Quattro. In both instances, they were close with the original owners and paid homage by staying true to the restaurant’s history and heart. For Quattro, that’s fine, contemporary Italian cuisine with all the flair and flavour that comes with it.
There’s a new lick of paint on the walls, new items on the menu (but don’t panic, the classics you love, like spaghetti Quattro, are still there), and an unmistakable sense of excitement. The sauce for their tagliatelle bolognese is braised for eight hours, giving it an incredible richness, and the smoked albacore tuna is served with a white anchovy tonno tonnato (tuna mayo) made with confit albacore tuna belly.
The cocktail menu has also been revamped and now features a martini that’s inspired by a Caprese salad with olive oil and pepper-washed vodka, dry vermouth, with pickled cherry tomatoes, and an upgraded Smoky Old Fashioned with Matusalem aged rum and Booker’s bourbon, delivered smoking to your table, that will have other diners eyeing it with envy!
“Whistler has always been home,” says James Paré, executive chef and co-owner. “The restaurants here are part of the Whistler experience. We want people to be driving up the highway and already be thinking about what they’ll be ordering for dinner when they finish on the slopes.”
604-905-4844 | quattrorestaurants.com
Dine in a Snow Globe
Snow globes are magical things. One flick of the wrist and snowflakes fall on the scene below, somewhere meaningful to the beholder. But wouldn’t it be magical if you could actually be inside the globe, looking up at the snowflakes falling around you, with the added benefit of being served a five-course meal with drink pairings? This year is certainly in need of a little magical innovation, and this winter, the Fairmont Chateau Whistler has taken this to another level with their Snow Globe Dining Domes.
Glowing on the Wildflower restaurant’s patio, three domes are filled with plush fur throws and cushions, with twinkling fairy lights strung overhead giving guests that warm, cozy feeling. Derek Bendig, the executive sous chef, has designed the five-course dinner and has undoubtedly added some distinctive magic touches.
“The globes are beautiful,” says Bendig. “It’s a memorable, unique, and safe experience that we’re excited to bring to our guests this winter. The menu includes gin-cured steelhead trout gravlax (fish, cured with salt and sugar), bison carpaccio, wild mushroom risotto, seared scallops, a 50-ounce Tomahawk steak, and a decadent dessert platter. Each globe has a beverage partner, with Stella Artois, Fever-Tree, and B.C.-based wineries Blasted Church and Roche Wines paired with each course. It’s a passion of mine to find just the right pairing, and we have some fantastic beer, wine, and cocktails to wow people.”
It’s all served family-style with the dome concept integrated into the presentation, making this both a visual experience and a gastronomic one. Dome guests can expect to leave with a little memento of their time in the globe — not that you’re likely to forget an experience like this! The globes fit a group of up to six inside — perfect for an unforgettable family experience or an incredibly romantic gesture.