Not surprisingly, food was once again a highlight of the trip:
We had dinner our first night at La Colombe, one of the many delightful "BYOB" bistros that make eating in this city affordable and fun. Located along restaurant row on Rue Duluth Est (554 to be exact), this cozy spot offered a $42 table d'hote with a choice of seven entrees that all sounded incredible. After a creamy vegetable "soupe du jour" and a terrine of deer with cranberries, we quickly discovered that the sauces are what distinguish this kitchen. A slightly tart raspberry vinegar sauce was a perfect match for my tender filet of lamb. A delicious wild mushroom sauce accompanied the veal chop. The fig and port glaze that enricled the duck breast was pleasantly sticky and sweet. Only the pork filet's cloying pineapple and honey sauce failed to win our affection. We toasted Colin in absentia for the bottle of wine we packed in our suitcase and now filled our glasses: the 2003 Quilceda Creek Columbia Valley Cabernet Sauvignon, rated a perfect score by Robert Parker and rated #2 wine of the year in 2006 by the Wine Spectator The wine was exceptional, with its deep plum nose, tastes of blackberry and chocolate, and long finish. The Osoyoos-Larose bordeaux blend, the result of a joint venture between Vincor Canada and Bordeaux’s Groupe Taillan, was too tannic but opened up as the evening went on and proved quite drinkable. We were divided on which dessert to try, with half ordering the panna cotta with vanilla and passion fruit, and half asserting that chocolate, in the form of a marquise au chocolat, is the only legitimate way to end a meal.