Sherman's Food Adventures: Olympia Provisions

Olympia Provisions

Originally back in 2020, I was slated to do another road trip down through the Western US that would take me into Portland.  Well, you know what happened that year...  That plan was quickly scrapped in favor of infrequent road trips to the grocery store as our only outing during that time.  I did have designs on visiting Olympia Provisions while we were down there, but instead, in 2022, we had Life of Pi and Kim Jong Grillin' instead.  This time around on our foodie road trip, I wasn't going to be denied as we had a tasting at Olympia Provisions!

We ended up visiting their SE Washington location and started with some of their popular charcuterie boards including the Spanish Board.  This consisted of 3 salamis, sweetheart ham, fresh chorizo, miticaña, fried almonds, cranberry relish & piquillo pepper salad.  This was served with a baguette and fulfilled out charcturie cravings.  Loved the spiciness of the salami while beautifully complimented by the sweet cranberries and smooth cheese.

We also had the French Board consisting of two french saucissons, paté, pork rillettes, garlic sausage, brie fermier, pickled vegetables & grain mustard.  This was much milder and subtle in flavour with the pate being meaty and well-seasoned.  Loved the firm texture of the saucisson that were aromatic and nutty.  This had the same sweet and tangy cranberry relish that went well with the creamy brie.

One of the more simple items we had was the Cantabrian Brown Anchovies with beurre de baratte on sliced baguette.  Naturally, the saltiness and brininess of the anchovies really came through.  The flavours were very impactful and the bread was absolutely needed to balance this.  Furthermore, the creaminess and natural flavour of the butter created another layer of deliciousness.

From the robust nature of the anchovies and bread, we went to something more refreshing in a dozen of the Pickering Pass Oysters.  These little gems were properly shucked and featured fairly small oysters.  That worked for us as we prefer the kushis of the world more than the larger oysters.  These were lightly briny and sweet while being delicate and easy to eat.  They came with lemon, mignonette and hot sauce.

We continued on the anchovy train with the Catalogna Chichories with radicchio, croutons grana padano, anchovy vinaigrette and boquerones.  Unlike the saltiness of the Cantabrian Brown Anchovies, the boquerones were tangy due to the use of vinegar.  This brought an extra jolt of flavour to the already anchovy vinaigrette-dressed veggies.  Lots of crunch and freshness in this salad along with the meaty anchovies.

Possibly my favourite dishe of the meal was the Steak Tartare with olives, parsley, shallot, egg yolk and butter toasted baguette.  Look at the  beautiful color of the hand-diced steak!  It was fresh and buttery tender.  The aromatics from the shallots and the salty tanginess of the olives complimented the beef along with the proper amount of seasoning.  Now to top it all off, the crunchy baguette soaked in copious amounts of butter meant this was going to be super delicious and sinful.

Our final small plate, before we got to the larger items, was the Octopus a la Plancha with potatoes, chorizo, garlic bread crumbs and salsa verde.  Oh this was just as delicious as everything else so far with a tender tentacle that also retained a bite.  The salsa verde was so bright and flavorful.  It complimented the already seasoned octopus by keeping things light.  Crunch was added by the bread crumbs and so as was the crispy chorizo.

Finally getting to the bigger items, we dug into the Parisian Gnocchi avec Champignons first.  This featured a fairly rich cream sauce that was obviously influenced by the roasted mushrooms.  There was depth and woodsiness as well as a beautiful aroma.  We found the gnocchi to be light and soft (as Parsian gnocchi can be).  They were nicely seared to add a nuttiness to the dish.

Topped with a considerable amount of toasted almonds with brown butter, parsley and capers, the Pan-Roasted Trout Almondine was perfectly prepared.  Beyond the crispy skin underneath, the fish was flaky and moist.  It was properly seasoned, yet the crunchy almonds on top not only added a textural contrast, there was a buttery nuttiness as well as a salty tang.

Although the Salmis de Canard was a good dish overall, I felt the roasted duck breast could've been cooked a touch less.  By no means was it not tender, I just personally enjoy a medium-rare cook on it.  The skin was properly rendered though.  As for the confit leg, it was fall-apart succulent and featured rendered skin as well.  I really enjoyed the rich foie gras beurre blanc as it provided a luxurious and velvety coating to all of the components on the plate.  

When it hit the table, the Braised Bone-In Short Rib elicited quite the response as it was huge!  The meat literally fell off the bone and was nicely complimented by the apple cider & pork belly gastrique.  The acidity helped cut through the richness of both the lardons and the fatty short rib.  It also had an appealing sweetness that was an excellent compliment to the tender beef.  The aggressively roasted gold potatoes were nutty and crispy.

We ended off the meal with a pair of desserts including the Mountain Apple Tart and the Flourless Chocolate Cake.  The tart was very good with tender slices of sweet apples.  I found the tart crust itself to be on the lighter side, but still had a pleasing firmness.  As for the chocolate cake, it was rich and purposefully sweet.  The texture was dense, in a good way.  In the end, I was very happy with my meal at Olympia Provisions.  It was well worth the wait of 3 years since I had planned to eat there.  This won't be my last!

*All food and beverages were complimentary for this post*

The Good:
- Excellent charcuterie
- Overall delicious food
- Cozy atmosphere

The Bad:
- This particular location is a bit hard to find in the dark, mainly an industrial area


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