The LA-inspired setting of The Sunset Terrace Eat + Drink at The Fort Garry Hotel, Spa and Conference Centre, Ascend Collection is back – and even better.
This summer, there’s a new menu from chef de cuisine Kyle Lew that balances tapas-style items and delicious boards; live music Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays with local artists; cocktails that are literally the bomb; and a new deal for Ten Spa clients.
Plus, it’s such a fun interactive setting.
The chic ambiance features green walls, numerous plants and stylish tables, and provides a direct sightline to see all the culinary magic. Both the kitchen and bar are located right on the patio within shipping containers, which means the dishes and drinks come out fast. Plus, you’ll see bartenders and chefs cutting fresh herbs for your cocktails and dishes from the hanging garden as you enjoy your time under elegant white umbrellas.
The dish on the dishes
“We built the menu so that everything makes sense with everything else,” said chef Lew. “It doesn’t matter what dishes you order, or what combination, they will all eat really well together.”
The menu showcases both The Fort Garry Hotel’s excellent breads by baker-in-chief Angela Tambiloc – from pillowy-yet-crusty grain-shaped baguettes to olive oil-rich focaccia and perfectly tangy sourdough – along with local vegetables and an assortment of premium imported items like Ibérico cured meats, conservas and Manchego (all from Spain, of course), cheeses from Quebec and Nova Scotian caviar.
“We’re using the best products we could find in respectful ways,” said Lew. "Think beautiful imports and premium local products. And everything made in-house that can be.”
A few must-try dishes we sampled include the pan tomate, a seemingly simple dish found in the 'Loaves and Whispers' section of the website. Sourdough is loaded with local macerated Greenland Garden tomatoes infused with plenty of garlic, topped simply with basil and Maldon salt. It’s like biting into summer; the tomatoes pop and the sourdough has two beautiful textures with its chewy centre and toasty crust.
Another great number featuring a bread vessel is the house-made buffalo mozzarella surrounded by roasted peppers with olive oil, balsamic and fresh basil. It’s served with those baguette links, making for a fun, interactive dish where you can tear the bread before smashing it into that bouncy cheese while the peppers bring the sweetness.
For conservas (the menu section is titled 'Tinned by the Sea'), you must try La Brújula mussels. Sourced from northwest Spain, these plump mussels are swimming in a light pickle brine, making for a lovely little snack that you can soak up with a baguette, along with the accompanying summer caponata (a relish made of eggplant, which here also features plenty of white beans).
The charcuterie boards ('From Spain with Love') are also primed for picking at, with the five-meat option being a solid choice because you’ve probably never had morcilla (blood sausage) with such a meaty texture and flavour that somehow has no hint of iron. The house-made zucchini pickles that come with the boards are also praise-worthy.
There’s also a selection of robust salads – from a classic anchovy-rich creamy Caesar to a farro salad with pistachio, arugala and basil pesto dressing, along with several tapas-style dishes (the majority gluten-free) like chicken skewers with tzatziki and poached shrimp with house-made cocktail sauce.
If you're looking to go big, there’s also a seafood tower featuring lobster tails, shrimp, oysters, tuna poke and all the fixings, along with Ocean Wise-certified Acadian wild sturgeon caviar. Available in 30-gram and 50-gram tins, the caviar is served with robust house-made potato chips along with classic potato blinis accompanied with finely diced shallots, cured egg yolks and chives for topping.
Drinks that are the bomb
New for drinks from wine director Christopher Sprague is a selection of interactive cocktails. To kick up classic cocktails like a gin and tonic, The Sunset Terrace has a full roster of drink bombs from Cocktail Bomb Shop. These are presented on stately silver trays with your ice-filled sparkling beverage on one side, and a cocktail bomb (which really does look exactly like a bath bomb) perched atop a wine craft containing the boozy portion of your drink on the other. It comes with simple instructions to drop the bomb in your glass, watch it fizz and glimmer, and enjoy as-is as a mocktail or add your booze and make it a true cocktail bomb.
You’ll surely want to put your drink-bombing-content on Instagram, which The Sunset Terrace makes it easy to do with the patio's complimentary Wi-Fi.
You can also expect some fitting summer wines from Sprague, who is known for combining both approachable and hard-to-find bottles on his ever-evolving wine lists.
Contemporary jazz favourite Walle Larsson is back for a second summer on the patio every Saturday. For Thursdays and Fridays, expect acts like latin-jazz guitarists Onna Lou and Marco Castillo, along with keys sensation Connor Derraugh, to name but a few.
Book an event
Looking to book a boutique wedding, patio party or swish al fresco event this summer? The Fort Garry Hotel will (date dependent) make it happen here.
“The Sunset Terrace is anyone’s patio,” emphasizes Maria Cefali, director of marketing and strategic initiatives at The Fort Garry Hotel. “If anyone is thinking of a private reception – we can make that happen. The patio is not just for couples or tables of four. We can make anything happen,” continued Cefali as she pointed out where a couple could be married, or where you could hold an elegant outdoor meet-and-greet.
More details and Ten Spa deals
They’ve also paired the patio with Ten Spa and Glo Skin Bar this summer! After your treatment in the award-winning and internationally celebrated spa (located on the 10th floor, of course), show your receipt and receive 20 per cent off your bill at The Sunset Terrace.
Should it be cool, no worries! Hotel staff have installed 10 heaters throughout the patio to keep guests cozy well after the sun goes down.
Sunset Terrace Eat + Drink is located at The Fort Garry Hotel, Spa and Conference Centre, Ascend Collection, which is Winnipeg’s castle at 222 Broadway. Open daily starting at noon. Here’s the website for full details.