Sunday, January 14, 2007

L'Oree du Bois

Another trip to the boonies leads us to Chelsea again, to sample L'Oree du Bois this time.
Before we step in the relatively large all-wood cabin, we cannot help but notice that the parking lot is rather large and full. Inside, there is a flurry of activity as waiters ran around the lobby in what seemed to be a chaotic manner. The place is large and I am concerned that food will be second to volume served.

Those fears were unfounded. L'Oree du Bois' menu is varied and its basic ingredients are either locally sourced or even produced on site! Quality ingredient is more than half the recipe for a successful dish and L'Oree du Bois does not disappoint. May's 'Smoked salmon and scallops with celery root "julienne", chive and beet mayonnaise' is superb (right). Even before your lips touch it, the salmon and scallops' fragrance will make you salivate. They are smoked from L'Oree's own kiln.

I had the green peas soup which was also vary flavourful and highlighted the quality of the basic stock used for its foundation. Nam!

The main courses reflect the true essence of L'Oree du Bois; no fancy 'montage' of food, no elaborate layering of tastes, but rather bold, fresh and succulent savours prepared masterfully.

My 'Red Deer medallions from Boileau' marinated in red wine with black peppercorn is simply presented and a feast for one's tastebuds (left).

May's Confit of Quails with Wild mushroom sauce is equally delectable. Portions are large and the whole ambience was perfect. This is the food of talented kitchen crasftmen. I told May that this is the kind of food my dad would make (you have to know him; he will travel 100km just to get the right ingredients for a dish); you can feel the love in each plate!

And, as it turns out, it is quite affordable. The 4 courses Table d'Hote is $33, which includes soup, appetizer, the main course, dessert and coffee. Well, not that I want to dwell on this but Le Tartuffe was more expensive for a sub par meal.

So, we will be back in the summer to see what they can do with fresh herbs! If you enjoy bold tastes and fresh ingredients, definitely worth the 20 minutes drive.

L'Oree du Bois
15, Chemin Kingsmere
Chelsea, QC

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