Caf Select’s been a standby for three decades, but no one can accuse it of being stagnant. This fall brought new ownership and this spring brought even more change. During a two-week sabbatical, the four owners gave the space new carpet, a new name and a completely new menu.
Not only was the name cut back to Select, but the menu was cut, too. But it’s still a destination for finely tuned comfort food and French fare. Start with the Select soup. Crushed baby potatoes and leek form a creamy, Parmesan base that’s so good the very popular tomato vodka soup got knocked off the menu to make room for it.
If “calories” is a foreign word to you, go for the gnocchi fondue. Dip asparagus, prosciutto-wrapped apple and fried gnocchi in a mix of creamy Fontina cheese and white wine. Or, try the porchetta sandwich. It’s so decadent that just half of the slow-roasted meat wrapped in a bun and slathered in au jus will be sufficient.
But if you’re a conscious eater, try the ruby trout. It has layers of flavour, starting with a bed of white beans, followed by the fish and topped with the satisfying crunch of apple and celery slaw.
Finish on a sweet note with the meringue. It fools the eye because it looks savoury. The bits of meringue are reminiscent of nacho chips, while the rhubarb looks like salsa and the whipped cream, sour cream. It’s celiac friendly, more on the light side and sweeter than you’d think. (10018 106 St., 780-428-1629, selectrestaurant.ca)