Pop-ups at Test Kitchen

Test Kitchen has taken over the old Ric’s Grill space on 8th Street SW, and is now open for lunch as well as unique, one-off chef collaborations and pop-ups in the evening. We shared two appetizers – tartare with prawn crackers and sriracha aioli, and tempura mixed seafood with two dipping sauces. Both are really tasty and fun takes on regular menu dishes kicked up a notch, as were our mains of daily-changing ploughman’s build your own sandwich (BBQ pork belly for us!), and Indian staple, chicken Makhani with rice and naan bread. It’s playful and cool food from creative minds – and well worth trying.

Test Kitchen, 1436 8 Street SW, testkitchenyyc.ca@TestKitchenYYC

– Linda Garson, editor-in-chief/publisher, @vineanddine

Cocchi Rosa Cocktail

It’s cold outside! At this time of year I’m all about using the savory flavors of a fine aromatized wine. This is a shot of me stirring up a “London To Torino” cocktail with the newly available Cocchi Rosa. Find it at VineArts.ca for $38.50. The drink is 45ml Beefeater London Dry Gin, 45ml Cocchi Rosa, 15ml Cocchi Amaro, a few dashes of Scrappy’s Chocolate Bitters with a pithless peel of lemon, grapefruit and orange (All the spirits are available at VineArts). Served neat in a chilled coupé.

Cocchi Rosa, $38.50 at Vinearts, 1310 1 St SW, 403-290-0700, Vinearts.ca, @vinearts

– Tarquin Melnyk, contributor, @livelikeburning

Funghi e Proschiutto Cotto Pizza at LDV Pizza Bar

Living in an Italian dominated household means that we take our pizza very seriously. If you desire an authentic pie then look no further than LDV in Bridgeland. Franco’s son Rocco, studied in Italy and has literally recreated the perfect pizza reminiscent of what I would eat in Rome. I am a sucker for the funghi e prosciutto cotto version, that is topped with fresh fior di latte and supple tomato sauce. Buon appetito!

$17 at LDV Pizza Bar, 916 1 Ave NE, 403-263-5999, ldvpizzabar.com

– Erika Tocco, contributor, ABA wine judge and Wine Director at Vin Room, @corkscrewlady

Bento Box at Ki Modern Japanese

The Sushi / Sashimi Bento Box from Ki Modern Japanese in downtown Calgary provides a modern twist on this Japanese take-away concept. Reimagined daily with use of only the freshest ingredients, our experience showcased a mango cucumber salad paired with bites of spicy salmon and shrimp roll, beautiful nigiri and elegant slivers of fresh tuna, scallop and butterfish sashimi. Perfect for a power lunch with colleagues or clients.

$23 at Ki Modern Japanese, 308 4 Ave SW, 403-264-1133, opentable.com

– Adrian Bryksa, contributor, @abryksa

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