You Need to Try This Schmaltzy, Manchego Cheese-Dusted Latke at Poplar Grove

You Need To Try This is a running archive of all the awesome drinks and delicious dishes we’ve come across over the course of our professional and private lives.

Last week during a camping trip in the wilds behind Summerland, my dirty little party made a quick dash across the lake to Naramata, where we washed up and ate a superb patio lunch overlooking the world at Poplar Grove Winery. We may have annihilated the tempura-battered halibut with smoked tomato, capers and shaved fennel; the marjoram-enhanced Margherita pizza zapped with Calabrian chili; and the addictive little cubes of crispy polenta wrapped in whispers of cured pork fat and dolloped with creme fraiche — all so civilized and filling after a hurried camp breakfast of overcooked eggs and shitty coffee — but the standout was a hockey puck-sized, super crispy potato latke, which came capped by an organic, perfectly oozing, manchego-dusted egg and littered with shards of schmaltzy crackling. I’ve taken in a few fancy latkes before, but nothing quite as decadent or delicious as this, with its creamy, crunchy, crispy, and not the least bit chewy textural contrasts and savoury one-two-three punch. I expect chef Rob Ratcliffe will change his menu over the course of the summer. Let’s hope he leaves this one well alone.

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