A Feast for the Senses

by Jennifer Iannolo

On my recent trip to Vancouver I hosted a dinner party at Lumiere, a Mobil 5-Star restaurant owned by Chef Rob Feenie. Rob is one of my favorite chefs, and I knew he and his staff would put on a brilliant show for us. Their efforts did not disappoint, as my guests and I were presented with a special eight-course summer menu paired with wines for our feast. We spent the evening in sensory satiation.

As the courses progressed I gazed around the table to view each person’s reaction. Some people I knew quite well, others I did not, but I was heartened by their expressions. By the end of the meal, Francisco decided that he actually liked raw oysters, and shook down the garcon for the name of our bottle of tawny port. Michael cooed over each dish, and an expression of pure joy beamed from his baby blues. Marsha actually took more than a sip of wine (much to my delight), and particularly enjoyed the ravioli trio. (What Italian wouldn’t?) Her husband John took care of any remaining sips in her glasses, and even came up with a little rhyme to commemorate the evening (this was due to his poetic prowess, not to the wine). Frank and Jeff ruminated philosophically as they savored their courses, and Bill popped up to snap candid photos between bites. Now that’s a dedicated photographer.

Midway through the meal I visited the other table to see if everyone was having a good time. The joy on their faces was all I needed to see. Adam and his daughter Emily wore big smiles, and looked as if they were in a culinary wonderland. Jordan and Rita offered to sign up for every future dinner party I hosted. Bob Jr. and Sr. reveled in their dining experience, and had the good fortune of sitting across from Michelle, a delightful, stylish woman with a fine appreciation for cuisine.

There is such a sense of radiant joy to be found in sharing a decadent meal with a group of people whose sense of life and fondness for cuisine mirrors one’s own. I am grateful to have had the opportunity to do so, and am eager for the next gastronomic adventure. Cheers to my fellow gourmands!

Here is a recap of our menu:

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Duo of British Columbia Oysters
Chef’s Creek with wakame salad & Kuushi with tom yum jelly & wasabi tobiko

Japanese Scallop Ceviche
with watermelon tartare and tomato sorbet

Trio of Ravioli Squash & Truffle Butter, Pea & Lemon Butter, Crab/Prawn & Red Wine Jus

Roasted Magret of Duck with seared foie gras, arugula gnocchi and haricots verts

Roasted Rib Eye of Lamb
with lardons, minted peas a la creme and eggplant caviar

“Le Fromage”
a fine selection of Canadian & imported cheeses, served with fruit and nut bread

Mango Sorbet
with lychee jus

Sticky Toffee Pudding
with pear compote and whipped cinnamon mascarpone

Chocolate and Jelly

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