The Best Thing I Ever Ate

Food memories are not just about the taste and presentation. They become forever associated with the context of the time and place of the experience.

Last week I went to the Blue Mountains for a spa date with my two sisters to celebrate the 40th Birthday of our youngest sister with a visit to the Scandinave spa. After an incredibly relaxing yet invigorating late afternoon of lounging in outdoor hot pools, sauna and steam room followed each time by polar dips in frigid cooling pools we had built up quite an appetite.

We decided to dine at Oliver and Bonacini, the restaurant at the Westin Trillium House, the hotel that we had carefully selected for our overnight sisterhood adventure. What a delight it was to be seated in front of the wall of windows overlooking the frozen pond with a view of the Village, enchantingly glowing in the reflection of  the night-lit ski hill.


Next to us was a massive round island serving station with a mesmerizing ring of fire  floating above. It exuded a sensuous ambiance while also buffering our seating area from the rest of the dining room.  Our hostess read us well when she chose our seating because the one thing we sisters do well is share lots of loud, belly laughs!

I knew instantly when I read the menu what dish I just had to order – the Sea Scallops with Oxtail, hands down – no questions asked.  I had visions of rich, marrow-drenched, slow-roasted,soft, tasty morsels of beef contrasted by the sweet, juicy yet firm texture of perfectly sautéed giant scallops.

Yup-I have a big, bold food imagination and my moments of true Foodie bliss are those times that exceed my expectations.  This time I must say, they were blown away!

My experience of  oxtail stew to date has been limited to the luscious yet now familiar  West Indies curry flavours introduced to me by my dear friend, Robin, who once lived in Barbados.  Chef de Cuisine, Jeremy Korten’s version had an enticing blend of  spices with a strong note of Fennel Seed that stole my heart. The combination of this incredible oxtail sauce with the spot-on, seared scallops, delectably creamy polenta and crunchy peas shoots put me over the top.

….and yes, my sisters giggled as I wiped the plate clean with my hands and licked my fingers….thankfully they were there to keep me from licking my plate.
Article authored by Cathy Berkhout-Bosse to commemorate a very, special visit to the Blue Mountains on January 4th, 2012.
Cathy is a Realtor by day and passionate home chef and writer by night. She finds it a bit boring to always write about real estate and economic development. Thankfully Niagara is a culinary hot spot with amazing local food bounty so it is easy to combine all her interests in our increasingly eclectic, Team Berkhout Bosse “Niagara Realty Source Report” BLOG.  

Categories: A Day in the Life


1 reply

  1. Hee hee…..Cathy was definitely in Foodie heaven! It was quite something to behold.
    My rack of lamb was also fabulous!
    Great article sister dear…..

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