Edelweiss

10Oct06

While heading to Lantaw Bukid for the company’s team building excursion, I noticed a restaurant along Bangkal named Edelweiss. I asked my co-workers if they know anything about the place and one quipped that the place serves Canadian-French cuisine and they had good food. The restaurant piqued my interest and I promised myself that I’d visit the place soon. What also piqued my interest was the name. Edelweiss. Doesn’t sound French nor Canadian. It sounded German. Maybe a German who lived in Canada and moved here? That was possible. But I wanted to know more about “Edelweiss.”

Just what is Edelweiss? Going to the wonderful world of the wiki, I found the Edelweiss flower, also known as Leontopodium alpinum. The Edelweiss is protected plant in countries such as Bulgaria, Switzerland, Italy, Germany, Slovakia, Slovenia, Austria and Romania. Edelweiss when translated means “noble white”. It is the national flower of Austria and Switzerland.

My first thought was “Huh. A restaurant named after a flower.” I felt that there’s something else behind the name. I already knew that it might have something to do with Switzerland or Austria. I then saw the disambiguation link. Running the list of disambiguation I came upon “Edelweiss (song), from The Sound of Music.” The first paragraph reads:

“Edelweiss” is a Rodgers and Hammerstein song from musical and film The Sound of Music, in which it was sung as a defiant statement of Austrian nationalism in the face of the Third Reich. It is named after the Edelweiss, the white flower found high on Alpine hills.

Ahh…

So that solves the mystery of Edelweiss.

But what about the food?

It was several weeks later that I got the chance to sample their cooking. My girl, who is also a food adventurist, and I went to Edelweiss on a Saturday after watching The Devil Wears Prada. It was a past 8PM and the only crowd in Edelweiss was a family of four when we came in. We seated ourselves in one of the booths located in the far corner of the establishment. Service a prompt though a bit sluggish. The menu revealed food that had a European influence. Each page was divided into three columns; the right-hand had the description of the food item, the middle column the price, and the left-most column the description of the item again but in Austrian (or is it German). I had a bit of a hard time choosing since I wanted the first meal in Edelweiss to be memorable. I couldn’t find steak. Damn. I settled with the beef roll instead and my girlfriend chose the pork escalope. As was our habit when eating at a place for the first time, we asked the foodserver to leave one menu with us for perusal. My girlfriend leafed through the pages and then excitedly pointed at something. She wanted to try the potato salad. I called our food server’s attention again and ordered the potato salad. We did a little bit of idle chitchat.

Our food server later came back with the potato salad. It was good. My girl’s a bit finicky when it comes to potato salads but she liked it very much. I defer to her wisdom.

The salad was really good and the main course was equally as good if not better.

The beef roll I ordered had vegetables rolled up inside. I forgot exactly what kind. The meat was tender and juicy. The gravy was superb. It was taste bud heaven. It was such an ecstasy to put a piece of that roll into my mouth and slowly chew it. The mashed potato that came with it was smooth and delish. The chef added a dash of cinnamon which made the experience much more tantalizing.

The pork escalope was just as good. Pork when prepared poorly is just any other piece of meat. But when done right, you can taste the difference and good chefs are able to use that difference to stimulate your taste buds and give you a great dining pleasure. The pork meat was also tender and juicy. The ingredients blended well together to put such harmony into your mouth.

I enjoyed very much the dining experience there and I wanted to tell the cook or chef how much I loved the food. I asked the food server if I can talk to the wonderful person who prepared the beef, the pork, and the potatoes. She was taken aback and didn’t know how to respond, like a deer frozen on its tracks when light is shone into its eyes. She muttered something about the chef being busy or something. Jeez! I just wanted to tell the guy or gal how great the food was. Ah, well. This is Davao after all and people just don’t know how to appreciate good food as well as how to react when someone wants to appreciate good food.

So to the one who prepared our meal: Thank you. I loved every bite and will be back for more.

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