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Okanagan Food

Just back from the Okanagon. There is not much posted on this area so a quick set of notes:

Enderby...Lulu's...excellent general menu. Everything made in house, good qaulity and variety. Nice place to stop (as we did) for lunch before hitting Kelowna.

Summerland: Zia's...another wonderful stop. Had a great lunch there highly recommended.

Kelowna: Fresco, great service, mostly good food. My venison chop was a simple, somewhat overdone tasteless chunk of meat. The other dishes won rave reviews from our crew. The service was very good even if our server seemed a little green and unsure. The pea soup was to die for. The deserts were art. The plating was second to no other restaurant we have been to anywhere (although, overall, the notion in a previous post that Fresco can compete with world class restaurants is a bit overstated). We loved their open kitchen (it is really open...not just on one side, but the entire corner of the restaturant is an open kitchen...We took time to speak to the kitchen staff and they were very friendly and communicative...kids loved it.

Kelowna: Yamas was yummy, basic Greek food.

Kelowna: Da Tandoor....best Indian we have tried. The menu is runs a nice range of styles but all the basics are there. An family from Pakistan who had just finsihed theri meals said it was the first time in Canada that they had tasted food like at home. They rightfully raved about the food. Odd space though...very dark.

Kelowna: Bonfire....more to come on these guys later as we ate there a couple of times (we stayed at the Cove Resort wher they have their establishment)...suffice it for now to note, great service, very poor food. The menu procalims a southwestern theme. The food sounds good, but nothing worked. The ribs were blah, dry and tasteless, th rest of the food just never met expectations as far as flavours. The ingredients just did not work together or there was not enough flavour. The exceptions were the stuffed peppers (renallos) and the ice cream (gellato I guess) made from Carmellis goat milk...yummy! The chef needs to figure out what he wants to be when he grows up as the waitstaff said they were trying to appeal to everyone by keeping the complex list of ingrediaent bland (well, okay, I paraphrase and editorialise a bit on this, but basically they said ....spicy...bad, bland...good). I suggested then maybe a change of theme would work better rather than trying to pretend. In any event, great resort,fabulous staff all round, disappointing food.

Westbank: Cucina...blech, stay away.

Penticton: Salty's Beach House, fun basic food. Better than average, fun decor and freindly service. You get what you expect when you walk in...it comes with our recommendation.

Those, from my faulty memory, cover some of the places we ate at. Sorry for the typos...no spell check...no time.

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  1. I love Salty's! It's just fun!

    1 Reply
    1. re: starlady

      I second that! And the view isn't too bad either.

    2. Passa Tempo in the Spirit Ridge resort in osoyoos was fantastic when i was there for the fall wine festival - I hope it's still good. We had a couple breakfasts and a fantastic wine pairing dinner - the pairings were lovely and they weren't skimpy on food or wine!

      it was delicious! we will go back next time we are that way.

      4 Replies
      1. re: pants

        The chef/owner of Passa Tempo is Brad Lazarenko from Culina in Edmonton. If you like his food at Passa Tempo you have to try Culina. He offers frozen TV dinners (along with a wonderful and creative menu) that we stock up on for lazy days. Tiny place though (make reservations) and nice deck sitting (also tiny).

        1. re: foodiesnorth

          excellent, i'll have to try it next time i'm in edmonton.

          1. re: pants

            Passa Tempo was fantastic. We stayed at Spirit Ridge for 3 nights, and loved eating there for every meal. We tried almost everything on the menu, the dished were all very good. Lots of creativity and perfectly prepared.

            1. re: sebell

              Nice to hear that Brad and the "kitchen brigade" he brought down from Edmonton are doing well.

              Another reason to visit wine country

      2. I still love Theo's in Penticton. Fantastic Greek food, great ambiance - reminds me of Greece. If you get a chance, go and try the taramasalata. But any of the traditional Greek faves are well-prepared there. I was just there, and I never miss it whenever I'm in town.

        2 Replies
          1. re: feuerzeug

            We go there frequently for a late lunch; love that Greek villa feeling with the courtyard and skylights! Seafood salata is a good light choice, and we often have the Orekteka (assorted appetizers) and another dish - the chicken livers were really good.

          2. My best dining experience in Okanagan has to be Bouchons Bistro in Kelowna. Great wine list (wine spectator award of some sort) and Foie gras many different ways. Always great food & great service.
            A recent worthy newcomer is Amante Bistro in Penticton. They just opened this year and are excellent.
            Pearson's European Deli in kelowna is great for a lunch sandwich.

            Nothing else on my list of 20 restaraunts I have tried are worth mentioning.
            Being from Toronto, the range of food styles available in the valley seems very limited. We generally stay way south in kaleden. With the Okanagan being a tourist locale, we find most restaurants live down to that expectation and are generally just slightly under whelming. The last couple of years have seen some of the wineries producing very interesting & tasty food for lunch, but way too expensive.

            1. I found Da Tandoor pretty good. Still not as good as the best in Calgary, but then again we're very spoiled here in Cowtown in regards to Indian food.

              But the prices, portions and service were excellent. Well worth going to. It was also packed when we went.