The White Goose Bistro
WHITE GOOSE BISTRO
THE CARD GAME
While my photographer (Bo Dannefaer) and I were sitting at White Goose Bistro, waiting for our food, we started to develop a game, one where players deal out cards representing chefs and other culinary staff members, and the objective for each player is to construct a kick-ass culinary team for a fictitious restaurant. To win at this game, one must put down criteria. You might judge on if the chef has a red seal, or maybe just a degree in the culinary arts. And just like any other card game, there would be a round of betting. Our first hand, I decided to stand pat while my opposition draws three. I push my chips to the center of the table, all in. In fact, I decide to remove my Tag Heuer imitation watch I picked up from a vendor in China (legit). I’ll bet my car as well. I drop my keys into the pot—it’s a performance automobile, requires premium. You know what, I’ll even put my girlfriend figuratively onto the table like Cage in Leaving Las Vegas (or was that Honeymoon in Vegas?). I was confident because I had drawn the culinary team at White Goose Bistro. Bo folded; victory was mine.
We may expand the rules a tad but we have the baseline down. Thankfully, Saby Karmakar has returned to the staff after a lamented absence, joining veteran chefs Ryan Cyre and Roxanne Miller. With Fallon Moreland running front of house, I’m not the only one that wins. It also exemplifies the fact that degrees, diplomas, and seals may indicate classes one has taken, but in the end, passion and experience will outplay the day. Both Roxanne and even Ryan lack any formal culinary training, gaining their skills on the front line. As for Saby, he has a diploma in hotel management and worked in 5-star hotels across the world before coming to Canada. But as said, being a chef is more about experience and enthusiasm, and it’s one of the few top professions where those two aspects will outshine any paper being held. There was no greater evidence of that than the plates we enjoyed that day. In-house-made fennel-infused bacon-wrapped scallops finished with orange reduction. Eighteen-hour sous vide Maui beef ribs. Twenty-one-day aged beef tenderloin, olive oil poached, served with salsa Verde. A document does not define greatness—only one’s action decide that, and the food at White Goose is all the proof one needs.
Everybody wins in the end.
Class: Executive Chef
Has double action points compared to other chefs.
Class: Front of House
On her turn, can sacrifice dignity to increase Yelp score by 5%.
RAJA “SABY” KARMAKAR
Can swap out one menu item with an original recipe.
Class: Chef de Partie
Can assume any station position assigned.