Charcut, Calgary

It’s always fun when you go to a restaurant and  either you or someone you’re with knows the chef or someone important at the restaurant. There’s always great service, little surprises and generally a sense of feeling special. However, there are a few rare occasions when knowing someone at a restaurant can work against you, and it was none too obvious that it was a bad idea knowing the people who ran the restaurant at Charcut in Calgary. My friends T&A knew the good folk behind one of Calgary’s finest eateries and I wished that on this occasion they hadn’t for the simple reason that we pretty much ended up tasting 95% of the menu – the chef wanted us to taste everything! Dear god! I’ve never eaten so much meat in my life! It was all so incredibly tasty and well cooked and wonderful but there was no way in Christendom that the 3 of us could, would or should have eaten everything that came before us. Naturally, we did feast on the remains for a further 2 days! But what a feast, what a fantastic feast it was! A case of man vs food, and here, food won!

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Pigs head, cheese
Bone marrow
Tuna
Beets

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Starting off, we got a plate of Pigs head mortadella, brassica mustard and melted Quebec raclette with brioche. The pigs head was exquisite and had bits of truffle and pistachio running through it. The raclette…well, it’s melted cheese after all.

Bone marrow and snails with parsley salad: a classic and well made dish – I am a sucker for bone marrow every time!

Arugula and tuna conserve, pickled lemon and potatoes: Simple, elegant potted tuna. Loved the pickled potatoes as well!

Roasted heirloom beets, homemade goats cheese, mint, basil: loved the beets, couldn’t love the goats cheese – much like mascarpone, and without any goatiness or tartness to it – bit boring.

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Artichokes
Sausage platter
Meat platter
Pork

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A perfect little plate of Artichokes and chilli with grilled sourdough before the onslaught of meat and more meat, and a bit more meat with a hint of meat…

Sausage platter: Spicy coppa sausage (homemade pork shoulder, cayenne and paprika sausage), Italian sausage with pickles and parsley, potted trout, rabbit terrine, homemade salami. Incredible homemade cured meats but we simply had to ask for it to be packed as we were told rwas lots of more coming.

Meat platter: Spit roasted prime rib, grilled lamb’s leg, asparagus & aioli, rocket. Some of the finest beef I’ve tasted, I have to say. But then again, Alberta is renowned for its beef! Once again, a few nibbles to taste and the rest had to be packed, and it was thoroughly enjoyed for breakfast the next day!

Grilled pork chop, corn and cheese ‘risotto’: Not actually risotto, but huge white corn kernels cooked like a risotto to accompany a hunk of tender, smokey pork.

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Poutine
Desserts

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.Duck fat fried poutine, cheese curds, truffle gravy: Originating in Quebeec this dish of chips, cheese and gravy sounds like something you’d encounter at a British chip shop on a late drunken night. Personally, I’m not a fan, as it’s not really that far from a chippie’s version – it’s just that here the chips are cooked in duck fat and it has lovely cheese curds and a great truffle gravy for dunking it in. Nevertheless, I’m not a fan!

Dessert platter: Caramelised pineapple upside down cake, white & dark chocolate mousse, crisp chocolate flakes, huckleberries in a jar with cheesecake. By this time we were too far gone into the realm of food coma to properly appreciate the puddings, but a small nibble revealed that on any other occasion, the pineapple cake would be a lovely finish to the meal! I did also quite like the tart huckleberries!

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Recommend you go: 8

Food: 7

Website

CHARCUT Roast House on Urbanspoon

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