Echo Park: Debbie Does Poutine, Four Brix Adds WineSep 12 2011 · 5 comments · Echo Park, Food Truck, Guilty Pleasure, Locavore, Street Food, Wine
Here’s what I know about poutine:
- Traditionally it’s a dish comprised of fries, gravy and cheese curds.
- It hails from rural Quebec, but can now be found Canada-wide—they even sell it at McDonald’s.
- It was invented in the 1957 by restaurateur Fernand Lachance. He shook up a bag of cheese curds and fries, and violà, poutine was born.
- In the 50s,“poutine” was slang for “a mess,” which is exactly what Fernand said when he saw what was in the bag.
- Up until a few years ago, poutine was considered pretty low-brow in Quebec, served mostly in greasy spoons, but like a lot of other comfort foods, it’s made its way onto some fancy restaurant menus. You can even get it with foie gras for $23 at at famed Au Pied Cochon in Montreal.
I should also add that it’s freaking delicious, which is why I was—and I never use this word—stoked when I got an invite to try out The Poutine Truck, Debbie Lee’s (also of the Ahn Joo truck) newest food project. Even better was that this gravy fries extravaganza was to take place at Echo Park’s City Sip, where Four Brix wine would be paired with each poutine course.
The Poutine Truck offers traditional and more laissez-faire varieties of the dish. The abbreviated menu gives you the choice 3 gravies (brown onion beef gravy and chicken or veggie veloute) and 3 locally-sourced, organic cheese curd varieties (plain, garlic herb and firehouse), which are generously laid upon freshly cut and made-to-order Kennebec potato fries. You can also take your poutine to the limit by adding bacon, chicken or flatiron steak.
We tried 4 combinations whipped up by Debbie, each paired with wine. My favorite was the good ‘ol classic poutine with brown onion gravy and plain cheese curds. The beef-based gravy was thick and hearty without being overwhelming, and there was no skimping on the cheese. This contrasted well with the light and silky Four Brix 2008 Rhondezvous. Another standout was the Lardon & Frites, which was prepared with the chicken veloute, a good choice since it’s rich but relatively lighter than the brown gravy. This was paired with 2008 Temptress, a temperanillo blend with a spicy side.
Aside from fries and gravy, The Poutine Truck offers one more option: fried cheese curds! I’m a fried cheese zealot, so I was bound to love these gooey little bites served alongside a mouth-watering herbed aoli. I’m still thinking about them.
And I’m still thinking about The Poutine Truck, which is pretty momentous since, for me, food truck fatigue has definitely set in—I can rarely muster the enthusiasm needed to wade through the meals-on-wheels glut. But I really loved the way those fries held their own up against all that gravy and cheesy goodness, and I want some more.
Though I don’t recommend downing four servings at once—that was a sacrifice I made especially for you, mes amis.
Poutine facts source.