First Taste of The Big Taste YYC

Big-Taste-YYCThe saying “better late than never” evolved from a line in Geoffrey Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales, penned all the way back in 1386. The fact that I’m able to say “better late than never” when it comes to The Big Taste only dates back to December, when I had to pass on an annual pre-Christmas get together with fellow students from the morning class at taekwondo. After a couple of failed attempts to find a date that worked for everyone in the group, we finally landed on March 8th (which I guess qualifies as a pre-2016-Christmas get together).

I got tapped to choose the restaurant, which made me groan out loud. Due to some severe allergies in the family, we seldom eat out, so I’m not familiar with many of the restaurants that are part of Calgary’s well-regarded food scene. The pressure was on! Lucky for me, #BigTasteYYC popped up in my Twitter feed that same day. After browsing through more than 50 prix fixe lunch menus, I opted for Sky 360 at the top of the Calgary Tower. Foodie’s might wonder why I chose a restaurant that’s consistently rated in the 3.5 range on TripAdvisor, Google reviews and Yelp. Two reasons:

  1. Our reservation for the 3-course $25 lunch menu included the elevator ride / admission to the Calgary Tower for every member of our party (a value of $18/adult if you can’t find a coupon to help with the cost); and
  2. The menu included more options than any of the other prix fixe Big Taste lunches, which I hoped meant everyone in our group would find something they’d like.

Sky 360 turned out to be a good choice. While everyone opted for the green salad topped with the most amazing carrot chips to start, we ended up with all three main course options at the table. While I’d never prepare fettuccine with bacon, parmesan cream sauce, green onion, egg and fresh ground pepper at home, I really enjoyed the well-prepared noodles and accompanying triangle of ciabatta bread. Desert was two scoops of fig cheesecake gelato from Fiasco Gelato. Several Fiasco Gelato flavours are staples in our freezer at home, but this new-to-me-flavour was a very tasty way to end the meal.

I can only remember going up the Calgary Tower once in the 25+ years I’ve lived in Calgary. Everyone else in the group had been up the tower no more than two or three times, so we took advantage of the bird’s-eye view, taking turns pointing out our neighbourhoods, sharing stories about places we’d lived or visited, commenting on the ongoing construction (despite the economic downturn) and watching several planes headed for a landing at the Calgary International Airport.

Not everyone in the group was convinced to step out onto the glass-floored section of the observation deck, but I certainly did!

With the start time for afternoon classes at the dojang rapidly approaching, we rode the elevator down at about 2:30, just in time to watch the new drone footage video play on the flat screens installed in the elevator car, the perfect amuse yeux to bring my first taste of the Big Taste YYC to a close.

And, BTW, I’ve signed up to receive email notification when next year’s event details go up. Events like this might eventually make a foodie of me. Have you been out and about trying some of the Big Taste menus? If so, what’s your favourite?

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