Team Canada The Canadian men’s Olympic hockey team ingested its carbs and protein in style Wednesday tonight at db Bistro Moderne, the popular Vancouver restaurant owned by famed New York chef Daniel Boulud and former B.C. Lion David Sidoo. Word that the team would be dining at the Kitsilano hotspot on its off-night between games had leaked by late afternoon; cops and restaurant security rebuffed the few intrepid fans who tried to talk their way into the place, which closed to the public while the team was there (with exceptions made for Maclean’s, a local paper and a few comely local lasses who sat in the bar area).
The team’s unmarked white bus pulled up at 6:30 and the players, who had just all met one another as a team two days previously, filed through the entrance bar area where many picked up a glass of beer. They then took their place at a long table where they were served “family style,” the food presented on platters, while managers and trainers fanned out at surrounding tables. Spending a night outside of the Olympic Village offered the team vital bonding and relaxation time, head coach Mike Babcock explained as the team chowed down on a delicious, well-balanced, management-approved dinner.
Chef Stephane Istel prepped charcuterie platters with duck pate en croute and duck prosciutto. Fibre arrived in the form of the house’s signature “Chop Chop” salad. The carb course was plentiful: ravioli, cavatelli and lemon fettuccine, followed by Loup de mer—black cod cooked in a salt crust served with white lemongrass butter—on a heavy platter chef Istel brought to the table himself. (Boulud was in town for the opening weekend but had flown home for another engagement.) More protein followed with the arrival of grilled rib-eye with a pepper-bearnaise sauce. For dessert there was apple spice cake and fruit platters. That wasn’t enough for some players who ordered up db Moderne’s famed $28 burgers—carnivorous concoctions stuffed with fois gras and short ribs. The wine flowed moderately during the dinner that wound down at 8:30 (Sidney Crosby nursed two glasses of red) and the mood was convivial following a previous night trounce, with everyone bursting into “Happy Birthday” for associate coach Lindy Ruff. It’s not difficult to guess what he wished for when he blew out the candles.