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When I retired in June of 2012, I wanted to broaden my circle of friends and become more active with other food and photography enthusiasts. Via Twitter and Facebook, I became friends with Joanna Sable from Bumpercrop and Lisa Kates known as A Food Gypsy. Their circle of food enthusiasts included Nicholas Wong. Nicholas and I became friends on Twitter and Facebook last July and found that we shared many interests including photography, food and motor racing. And up until yesterday, I had never had the chance to meet Nicholas IRL (in real life).

A few weeks ago Nicholas asked me to be his guest at a one-night-only special event titled “The Holly Golightly Evening.” I was flattered to be amongst 15 “fellow influencers” as we enjoyed dishes prepared by Chef Roshan Wanasingha from Encore Food with Elegance and featuring gourmet products from Sable & Rosenfeld.

Our evening began with us meeting for a limousine pickup at the Summerhill LCBO.

(Click on any photo to see a larger version)April_18_HollyGoLightly__2013-04-18_18-10-30_DSC_0344April_18_HollyGoLightly__2013-04-18_18-17-51_DSC_0351

During the limousine ride we were treated to some delicious hors d’oeuvres made by Encore, and Nicholas cracked open some sparkling wine. The limousine whisked us to the head office of Encore at 5000 Dufferin Street. Here are a few of the attendees about to enter Encore. Nicholas is second from the right:April_18_HollyGoLightly__2013-04-18_18-55-29_DSC_0359April_18_HollyGoLightly__2013-04-18_18-55-13_DSC_0355April_18_HollyGoLightly__2013-04-18_18-56-18_DSC_0364

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Ryan Silber

We were welcomed to Encore by its president, Cary Silber, his son Ryan, and Myra Sable, president of Sable & Rosenfeld. Keeping with the Holly Golightly theme, we were offered beverages including martinis featuring Sable & Rosenfeld’s Tipsy Cocktail Condiments.

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Myra Sable and Tanya Hsu

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Christine Pantazis, Nicholas Wong, Ann Gagno

Our menu for the evening was to include a trio of appetizers, a main dish, plus three desserts.April_18_HollyGoLightly__2013-04-18_19-06-59_DSC_0372

Cocktails in hand, we had a chance to meet each other and our gracious hosts plus enjoy a few more treats:April_18_HollyGoLightly__2013-04-18_19-09-07_DSC_0379

We were then invited into the kitchen to put on gloves and hats and prepare appetizers with the assistance of Chef Roshan’s excellent staff:

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Stacey Fowler, Mark Rodas, Chef, Nicholas Wong

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Chef Peter, Alexa Clark, Deborah Peniuk, Carmen Correia, Shilpa Raikar

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Then it was time to be seated and enjoy the appetizers we had just made and, of course, continue to enjoy our beverages:

Shirley Lum, Deborah Peniuk, Alexa Clark, Mark Santos

Shirley Lum, Deborah Peniuk, Alexa Clark, Mark Santos

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It was now time to start the official menu. For our appetizer course we were presented with “Poultry Three Ways.”

Sable & Rosenfeld jerk chicken on homemade corn bread muffin with mango salsa

Sable & Rosenfeld jerk chicken on homemade corn bread muffin with mango salsa

Sable & Rosenfeld teriyaki chicken taco placed on a zucchini ring with red daikon and cilantro sprout

Sable & Rosenfeld teriyaki chicken taco placed on a zucchini ring with red daikon and cilantro sprout

Open faced turkey burger on brioche bun with Sable & Rosenfeld cranberry sauce

Open faced turkey burger on brioche bun with Sable & Rosenfeld cranberry sauce

The presentation of our appetizers was amazing. My favourite was the jerk chicken, which had just the right amount of heat. April_18_HollyGoLightly__2013-04-18_19-52-56_DSC_0445

While waiting for our main dish, the president of Encore, Cary Silber, told us the history of Encore and some of his stories from having been in this business for over 30 years. His company has provided many different types of catering services including catering the recent event celebrating the arrival of the panda bears in Toronto, attended by our Prime Minister.

Cary Silber

Cary Silber

Our main dish consisted of two different kinds of fish:

— Sable & Rosenfeld lemon olive tapenade crusted halibut

— shrimp-crusted salmon on a jasmine rice pilaf with baby yellow zucchini, sautéed snow pea leaves and three-pepper coulis

This was outstanding! Both fish were excellent, but I leaned a little more towards the halibut:April_18_HollyGoLightly__2013-04-18_20-19-42_DSC_0475

While we waited for our dessert, Chef Roshan Wanasingha spoke to us about his career. He has been the executive chef at Encore for the past 12 years. While the catering business does present its challenges, he enjoys working at Encore because he and his staff do manage to have a great deal of fun while working hard at the same time:

Executive Chef Roshan Wanasingha

Executive Chef Roshan Wanasingha

For our final course, the dessert, we were presented with a trio consisting of chai-spiced honey cake with poached pear and raspberry sorbet; layers of oatmeal dacquoise blackberry ice cooler; and bittersweet marjolaine with hazelnut parfait. My favourite was the honey cake with poached pear—it was exquisite!April_18_HollyGoLightly__2013-04-18_20-46-06_DSC_0486April_18_HollyGoLightly__2013-04-18_20-46-15_DSC_0488April_18_HollyGoLightly__2013-04-18_20-46-25_DSC_0492

By the end of our meal we were all very, very satisfied, not only with the quantity and variety of the dishes we had eaten but also the quality and the presentation. Kudos to Chef Roshan and his staff.

My personal thanks go out to Nicholas for allowing me to have been a part of this very special evening. And thank you to our hosts, Cary and Ryan, for an unforgettable event—and to the lovely Myra Sable for providing her products, stories, charisma and the Sable & Rosenfeld goodie bags we were all given to take home. A memorable evening.

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