Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Epic Morel Memory Flashback!!!!

Question: What was one of the most memorable morel days of your life.....
Answer: Well now let me see.....ah yes.....and it goes a little something like this.....

One Of My Most epic morel days!

The French gulch burn site summer of 2005. Picking with a good friend chef and local restaurateur Phillip Lamarche of Klondike Kates restaurant in Dawson City Yukon where I was employed at the time. We had a little shroom rivalry going on in the kitchen at work as to who could get the most morels in the shortest amount of time on any giving day. This was the day I was going to change all that. We headed off with a few guys from the kitchen to French gulch for a regular four hour pick. After about 3 hours you can usually find a few people who more or less struck out waiting by the truck for the rest of us lucky ones to finish up picking. Not me though, I was deep in the burn and up to my neck in morels! Forget the Dawson City “Gold Rush” famous in 1898, this was the Dawson City “Mush Rush” of 05! My adrenaline is flowing, arms are flying and the weight on my back is getting heaver. I lost track of time, I lost track of reality. I felt like the guy from fear and loathing when he enters the hotel high on mescaline and everyone turns into dinosaurs! I was completely and utterly in the zone and “the spell of the Yukon” has a whole new meaning to me at this point of time. When I climbed up the 900+ foot embankment I was down I had a trapper nelson full of baskets and four 5 gallon pails full of morel glory! I was completely covered in wood ash, charcoal dust and blood head to toe. I looked as though I just escaped a war zone! When it was all said and done we brought them back to Kates for cleaning grading and scaling. The final weight was 140 pounds of fresh morels, 68 of which came from my buckets in 4 hours of picking. I have since broken that record and know of many mainstream pickers that achieve this regularly. But in that moment… on that day… in French gulch… I’ve never experienced such a out this world experience with mushrooms I have not ingested in my entire life! What a epic day for morels!!

Some of our summer of 05 bounty. Yes those are boxes and garbage bags full of morels from a epic Yukon summer!

Sunday, April 11, 2010


This party is about to hit the road! Good Bye Ottawa, Hello Yukon....Again. Can't wait to get back up to the mothership! Final prep is in place for the move with only 2 week remaining in O-town.
I will be running a fishing camp for the summer at the edge of Kluane national park on dezadeash lake. Ive contacted farmers and am currently making connections on the coast for seafood/shellfish.
Ottawa its been a slice, but its time to move on. Hoping to get my hands on a few ramps and morels before I leave and finish a few more hams and charcuterie projects I have on the go.
Some of my latest creations. From top left clockwise. Kiebasa, st.canut pork rillettes, dry cured wild boar sausage, heritage breed procuttio, tasso ham, foie gras and heritage breed pork liver terrine