Chorney-Sales space: Salt and Brick brings chef energy and culinary journey to 2023

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This yr has not seen a lot in the way in which of splashy new restaurant openings. 2023 has introduced us a pleasant assortment of informal eating places and intimate lounges, however there hasn’t been an enormous, buzz-worthy spot like final yr’s Barbarella or 2021’s Main Tom. Now, because the yr involves a detailed, a brand new restaurant has swept in so as to add a bit of pleasure to the native eating scene.

The identify Salt and Brick shall be acquainted to foodies who’ve spent vital time in Kelowna. The Okanagan model of the restaurant launched in 2018 (as a rebrand of an current restaurant known as Salted Brick), with a daring idea that noticed the chef bringing a brand new menu to life daily. Co-owner Casey Greabeiel, who can also be concerned with hospitality companies in Calgary together with Greta Bar, had lengthy needed to construct a restaurant within the house on tenth Avenue S.W. subsequent door to Greta. When the unit grew to become out there, creating a brand new Salt and Brick made sense.

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Translating Salt and Brick Kelowna, a 36-seat restaurant with a tiny kitchen, into an enormous metropolis, 140-seat restaurant shouldn’t be a cookie-cutter type of course of. To maintain the Salt and Brick vibe, Greabeiel and his crew maintained the unique model’s floral motif and uncovered wooden and brick décor, carving the room up into a number of distinct seating areas – together with bar and lounge areas, an atrium eating space, and a kitchen bar – every across the similar dimension of the unique Kelowna eating room. It makes the restaurant really feel concurrently intimate and vibrant – not a straightforward trick to tug off.

The most important key to Salt and Brick’s Calgary success although, needed to come by means of hiring the appropriate chef crew. Though the brand new location modifications its menu weekly moderately than day by day, the scope of the restaurant requires vital chef energy and a thirst for creativity. To hit that mark, Greabeiel and Co. employed Dave Bohati (Market, Teatro, Hawthorn) as government chef, Alejandro Buzzalino (Vendome, Mato pop-up) as chef de delicacies, and Larissa Costella (Holy Cow, Major Colors) as pastry chef. The three, together with a crew of different acquainted faces, exhibit their appreciable ability in a totally open kitchen, giving visitors fortunate sufficient to sit down on the chef’s bar the chance to expertise dinner and a present.

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“We’re capable of cook dinner the meals we consider in right here,” Bohati says. “We’re capable of play. We’re capable of make meals that we all know goes to be correct. It’s such a breath of contemporary air and creates a starvation to develop the very best that we are able to.”

Because the 15 (or so) merchandise menu does change weekly (picks are posted on social media firstly of the week), it’s not possible to explain precisely what clients can eat at Salt and Brick, however there’s some construction at play. Buzzalino has developed a wonderful uncooked seafood program with opening week picks like unbelievably creamy sake-washed Hokkaido U10 scallops in a blood orange dressing ($18) and thick slabs of luscious Canadian king salmon ($20) – with the choice to order all the five-item menu for $95.

The remainder of the primary week’s menu included decisions like a playful aspect stripe prawn toast in a yuzu ponzu with a dab of shrimp aioli, topped with regionally sourced purple sorrel ($19), a generously portioned model of the Kelowna location’s signature Brussels sprouts with popcorn ($23), wealthy bison tartare minimize with candy beets and served with Costella’s distinctive espresso sourdough ($26), clouds of agnolotti crammed with ricotta and topped with almonds ($26), and lamb ready char siu-style with sunchokes and a parsnip purée ($36). It’s secure to vow surprising, but completely balanced flavours, intelligent performs on texture, and plenty of surprises.

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A splashy restaurant wants a daring beverage program and Salt and Brick delivers with sensible cocktails and a powerful wine listing that pays acceptable respect to the restaurant’s Okanagan roots. Whereas I don’t need to spoil any surprises, visitors who “ask for Charlie” earlier than or after their meal shall be assigned an appointment to get pleasure from fast bites and extraordinary cocktails in a separate speakeasy which will or will not be situated on the premises (wink, wink).

Salt and Brick is open Tuesday to Sunday from 5 p.m. onwards. The restaurant is situated at 211 tenth Ave. S.W. and will be reached at 403-371-3429 or by means of saltandbrick.ca. Reservations are strongly beneficial.

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If that’s not celebratory sufficient, we’re now properly into Christmas pop-up bar season, with a couple of totally different choices this yr. The unique Christmas bar, Miracle on First Road, has returned to Proof (1302 1 St. S.W.) and can proceed to run till Dec. 24, serving most of the similar cocktails from earlier years, in addition to some new additions. In the meantime, Miracle’s extra tiki-oriented sister occasion Sippin’ Santa is in full swing over at Ricardo’s Hideaway (1530 5 St. S.W.). For one thing slightly totally different, Eighty-Eight Brewing Co. (#1070, 2600 Portland St. S.E.) has as soon as once more gone into Residence Alone mode, with cheeky McCallister household décor remodeling the taproom and particular occasions to be held by means of the season.

Elizabeth Chorney-Sales space will be reached at [email protected]. Comply with her on Instagram at @elizabooth or join her publication at hungrycalgary.substack.com.

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