Gold Medal Plates points the way to great Saskatchewan restaurants

If you are looking for the cream of the crop when it comes to places to eat in Saskatchewan, look no further than the winners of the Gold Medal Plates competitions in Regina and Saskatoon.

Gold Medal Plates, a national competition with cross-country events in 16 cities, showcases the very best of Canadian culinary talent. 

This year the Regina competition was hosted at the Conexus Arts Centre on October 28. Seven chefs prepared exquisite creations for the attendees and judges. The gold medal went to crowd favourite Garrett “Rusty” Thienes of the Harvest Eatery in Shaunavon. Thienes created a medallion of cold-smoked wild boar tenderloin crusted with sage and northern Saskatchewan morels in a small pool of butternut squash velouté alongside drops of black garlic demiglace. A swipe of rhubarb gastrique along the rim of the plate supported a golden beet poached in pear juice, a dehydrated pear chip, a quenelle of beet puree and saskatoon berry foam. Curtis Toth of Wild Sage Restaurant at the Doubletree Hilton took the silver for a trio of chinook salmon, while Joel Williamson of Lancaster Taphouse and Capitol Jazz Bar won the bronze for his rabbit terrine.

The Saskatoon event rolled out the next evening at TCU Place. The gold medallist was Chef Scott Torgerson of Radisson Hotel Saskatoon and Aroma Resto Bar. He prepared a roulade of elk flank and beef tenderloin with a black trumpet mushroom crust, along with three Saskatchewan button chanterelles and a parsnip puree. Finishing the dish were a crisp of reconstituted beef tendon and a swirl of broccoli puree. Christopher Hill of the Delta Hotels by Marriott Bessborough won silver for his cured and cold-smoked cod dish. The bronze went to Anthony McCarthy, The Saskatoon Club, who made a complex dish of Dore Lake pickerel with chanterelles, fiddleheads and flower petals.

The gold medal winners will go on to compete at the Canadian Culinary Championships in Kelowna in February 2017, but you can visit their restaurants at your leisure and discover their culinary skills for yourself.