Take a bite out of the Island

Taste of Oceanside gastronomic event in Parksville this weekend

Taste of Oceanside will offer a variety of food samples Saturday night in Parksville

You can delight your taste buds this weekend with some delectable food samples from local restaurants all at affordable prices and at the same time contribute to a good cause.

Proceeds from Taste of Oceanside which is organized by Parksville’s AM Rotary Club assist many groups in the community.

Now in its sixth year, admission to the tasty event remains at $15, with food and beverage coupons again priced at $1 apiece.

The coupons can be exchanged for tastings from the various food stations throughout the evening.

Each restaurant station will offer up to three items priced between one and three coupons each.

Refreshments can be purchased to enhance the tasting experience which will include everything from crab cakes to ribs, bison sliders to prawns and don’t forget to save room for those decadent desserts.

This year there will be 11 restaurants participating and serving specialty menu items.

Some of the returning restaurants this year include Bayside Bistro and Lounge, The Landing West Coast Grill, Cedar Room at Tigh-Na-Mara and Lefty’s Fresh Food.

New this year is Chameleons Osteria, which opened in Parksville last June.

Peter MacLeod, who is one of the operators of the Westcoast fusion eatery, said they are participating as a way to give back to the community.

He said they will be serving their popular crab bisque and their newest seafood soup, oyster bisque.

“People come in looking for our crab bisque.  It is our number one dish,” he admitted.

MacLeod said their sweet’n’sticky ribs will make an impact as well.

“Ribs are our specialty,” he said and added the pork back ribs will be tender and smothered with one of their home made sauces.

He said they try to use local ingredients at the restaurant but they also aim to make their food affordable.

“Where possible we use local ingredients but it is equally important to give good value.”

He said their third dish will be bison stroganoff which is made with bison sirloin.

MacLeod said now that they have an idea of what people in the community want in a restaurant, they will be trying some new things including weekend brunch which will start soon.

Other restaurants at the event will also be dishing up ribs including The Old Dutch Inn.

Head chef John Lornie will be presenting a dish of braised boneless beef short ribs on spinach and brie mash. He will also serve his specially of ceviche made with local seafood.

For dessert he will have a vanilla buttermilk pannacotta with pomegranate syrup.

Now that you’re drooling, make sure you get your tickets for Saturday night.

Attendance is limited to 600 so advance tickets are recommended.

You can purchase tickets from Marlin Travel and Close To You in Parksville, Coast Realty and NR Insurance in Qualicum Beach, participating restaurants, or from any member of the Parksville AM Rotary Club.

Taste of Oceanside happens April 14 from 6:30 to 9 p.m. at the Parksville Community and Conference Centre.


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