Imagine sitting by an inviting fire on a cold winter night, enjoying authentic regional cuisine by the talented French Chef Daniel Tobien, and a spectacular view of the snow-covered mountain, and you have Windigo Restaurant at the Fairmont Tremblant in Mont-Tremblant, Canada.
Edward and I had dinner at the restaurant in February 2009 where we sat at a table dressed with ivory linens next to the floor-to-ceiling stone fireplace where a fire glowed invitingly, and black wrought iron hanging ceiling lamps with cream colored glass shades and matching wall sconces softly illuminated the dining room creating an intimate ambience. On opposite sides of the fireplace, the floor-to-ceiling windows provided a romantic view of the snow-covered mountain lit by a not quite full moon, and paintings graced the walls.
The restaurant is one of comfortable rustic elegance where interesting antiques add to the overall charm, and the service is impeccable. Looking around the room, I noticed the small details of the whimsical metal candle stands with different animal motifs on each of the tables, the antlers hanging above the mantle where antique duck decoys were arranged on either end, the antique rifle mounted on the mantel, wagon wheels set near the base of the fireplace, and other antiques placed throughout the restaurant adding visual interest.
Every Friday and Saturday evening the restaurant features a special Surf, Turf, and Sushi Buffet, and although the à la carte menu featured many regional specialties that looked wonderful, when Pierre our waiter told us about the many delicacies on the buffet, including the lobster, we knew that we wanted to experience this gastronomic odyssey.
We began the Surf experience with steaming bowls of rich and creamy seafood chowder laden with a mélange of seafood and diced potatoes that were perfect on a cold winter's night, that Pierre paired with an Inniskillin Chardonnay 2006, Niagara-On-The-Lake, Ontario, Canada, 12% alcohol with green apple and citrus notes and a clean crisp finish.
Next came plates of succulent Alaskan king crab legs and oysters on the half shell where the only thing that could have been improved was if we had found pearls in the oysters; followed by shrimp salad, smoked salmon, and an assortment of sushi. The main event of the Surf experience though was the chilled half lobster that was sweet, delicate, and succulent.
Another highlight of the Surf buffet was the sautéed shrimp and scallops with garlic and Sambuca. The buffet chef created this dish to order by adding butter to a hot sauté pan, then searing the large shrimp and scallops with minced garlic, and finished the dish by adding a healthy dash of Sambuca (an Italian anise-flavored liqueur) to the pan, igniting the alcohol to flambé the seafood, and then letting it burn off naturally to impart wonderful flavor.
Edward continued with the Turf experience, which was crusted prime rib served with a red wine reduction sauce that was perfectly cooked and cut to order, accompanied by au gratin potatoes, and a mélange of vegetables, and was well paired with an Inniskillin, Varietal Series, Cabernet Franc 2006, Niagara-On-The-Lake, Ontario, Canada, 12% alcohol with red fruit nose and berries on the palate.
Windigo Surf and Turf Buffett
Although there were numerous hot and cold selections on the buffet, as well several excellent cheeses offered, we sweetly ended the evening by sampling a few of the many decadent desserts that included chocolate mousse with spirit soaked cherries presented in a glass and topped with whipped cream; dark chocolate shells filled with spirit soaked cherries and dark chocolate ganache; chocolate and orange sponge cake with Grand Marnier and dusted with cocoa; sinfully rich dark chocolate cake with layers of cream; dark chocolate ganache layer cake with hazelnuts; and chocolate fondue, that made for a chocoholic paradise.
Windigo Restaurant is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Read other articles on the Fairmont Tremblant in the Hotels and Resorts, Spas, and Chefs' Recipes section where Chef Daniel Tobien shares his recipes for regional specialties including a delectable trout recipe and a recipe for Reinvented Apple Pie with Vanilla and Pecan Glaze that uses Ice Cider.
3045 Chemin de la Chapelle
Mont-Tremblant, Quebec, Canada J8E1E1
Restaurant Telephone: +1-819-681-7685
Hotel Telephone: +1-819-681-7000
Hotel Toll Free: 1-866-540-4415
Read other articles on Mont-Tremblant in the Destinations, Hotels and Resorts, Restaurants, Chefs' Recipes, Spas, and Adventures sections.
For more information on Mont-Tremblant and upcoming events, please visit the websites: www.Laurentians.com and www.Tremblant.ca.
For information on Quebec, please visit the website: www.BonjourQuebec.com.
For information on Continental Airlines service to Mont-Tremblant International Airport, please visit the website: www.Continental.com. For information on the Airport Shuttle Schedule from the Mont-Tremblant International Airport to Mont-Tremblant hotels please visit the website: www.MTIA.ca.
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