March 18, 2007

Diner Amical, The Fairmont Palliser Hotel, Calgary, Alberta

Sunday March 18, 2007

Juergen Bahr, Vice-Chargé de Presse

Although the weather was contrary, the spring theme chosen by the culinary magicians of the Fairmont Palliser eclipsed with ease the feeling of winter returning that had descended on Calgary during a day of flurries and wind. The flowers in the foyer and reception room and the glistening lights of the famous Palliser chandeliers instantly brought cheer and hope to winter weary diners. The Diner Amical was held in the Crystal Ballroom, a magnificent hall that had seen many decades of wonderful and exciting events. Tonight was to be no exception. The joyous laughter and friendly conversation among the members readily reflected the cheerful theme set by the green spring tones of the table and the simple tasteful and elegant centre piece of spring flowers.

The food was outstanding guiding us toward spring with bright and fresh flavours, occasionally punctuated with taste explosions that brightened the mood and educated the palate. The selection of wines was very complimentary to the flavours of the food, the main course being paired with the king, a 2001 Castell De Falset, a truly exceptional wine. The composition of the plates was pleasing and in true harmony with ingredients and flavours.

This was complemented by excellent service. The Service Brigade was efficient, friendly and contributed greatly to this exceptional experience. The water service was unequalled in its frequency and the many offers of information regarding food and wine were commendable .

Our return to the Fairmont Palliser after several years was a triumph for the hotel and an amazing treat for the diners. We have to especially thank Brigitte Fritz, General Manager and valuable member of the Calgary Bailliage and her team, led this evening by Executive Chef, Greg van Poppel and Banquet Manager, Tonia Savoury-Drewlo. Outstandingly done and thank you so very much for this glimpse of spring that we all needed so much.

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