Since we were already on the property and have already danced at their soirée and been amazed by their operations and vast property via their private tour; we figured we might as well dine at their estate restaurant as well, to get the true and full experience of Phantom Creek.
We would indulge in the full set menu of Three Course at $70 per person, with $30 additional for the wine parings. With this option you get to choose your starter, main, & dessert from 3-4 options in each category. If you can’t eat a lot and are not a fan of desserts, they also have a scaled down Two Courses for $55 per person menu and the wine pairing add on here runs for $20.
There is indoor and outdoor seating available, but reservations are necessary. Out time began with a welcome glass of Pinot Gris. It was tropical on the nose with the essence of pineapple and lychee. Sharp and crisp with a bit of spice.
We opted for the special of the day and traded in the possibility to try 3 different starters for the upgrade of a seafood tower. We missed out on the Albacore Tuna accompanied by a shaved root vegetable salad, the Tanto Latte Burrata over house made sourdough, and the 63 Acres Beef Tartare served with tendon chips.
We felt it was worth the swap out, but wished there was more variety to our two tiers. Up top were raw oysters and thick shrimp served with an interchangeable accompaniment of a spicy yuzu sauce and a vinegar forward mignonette. This was 3 shrimp and 2 oysters for each in our party of 3.
The second tier was more impressive given the number of half peeled crab claws. They were easy to eat and sweet, but lacked a nice butter based dip to really draw out its natural flavour, or rather one that I am familiar with and readily anticipate.
This was also the largest collection of miniature mussels I have ever seen. Each was well cleaned with no sand. And you could taste the quality of the mussel that was dressed with fresh dill and red onion, that only heightened natural fishy flavour.
But everyone agreed that the Ahi Tuna on a crisp rice cracker was the best item of the tower. There was plenty of seasoning on the fish that the crisp was only needed for a contrasting textural component. They paired so well and were evenly salted. I wish we got more than one serving of this each, it was certainly the best item on the tower.
And with our tower we were given a glass of their 2021 rose. Compared to last year’s batch, this one was said to be more rich in colour, yet drank lighter in flavour. It had layers of spice and citrus, making it the ideal accompaniment to this seafood feast that we fully finished.
Next came our three entrees that we would share 3 ways. We were generously given our own full glass of wine to pair with each 1/3 course. Seeing as we had plenty of seafood above, we passed on the fish option here. Which was a Halibut with sweet pea purée, cello radish, fennel, samphire, and nori beurre blanc.
The 2019 Cab franc was decidedly paired with the duck thanks to its complimentary flavours of blackberry, raspberry, and sage brush. It is still young wine with oaky tannins.
The Duck Confit was served with puffed red quinoa, beets, fiddlehead, red & green sorrel, and hoisin sauce. The meat came off the bone so easily, you only needed to pull it out. The duck was rendered well, and ate sweeter accompanied by juicy beets. And the puffed rice added a nice crispy texture to the mix. The duck was Mark’s favourite dish.
The pork ate more like an amuse bouche, in one bite cubes, than a full entree you dig into. Prairie Ranchers Pork with a pork shoulder croquette, pork tenderloin, Jerusalem artichoke, pickled mustard seed, and harissa. There were some exotic flavours to this. Rich and deliciously salty, the one bite format, split 3 ways was a tester. This was my favourite of the 3 entrees.
The 2018 Merlot paired with it was not overpowering despite its oaky spicy and dark plum notes. It drank elegant as you breathed in its essence of vanilla.
And I think Diana said our third option, was her favourite. A Spring Risotto with morel & oyster mushrooms, asparagus, sous-vide farm fresh egg, and grana padano. A stunning presentation that was generous with its mushrooms. And you can’t go wrong when they are of this quality, especially when partnered with sharp cheese. Warm and comforting, but still light and fresh for the hotter weather.
This was perfectly paired with their 2020 small lot Silkamenan Chardonnay. A wine that is delicately oaked for 6 months with hints of stone fruit like peaches, and finished off with a little mint. It certainly brought out the earthy notes from the morels above.
As we did for our entrees, we too shared our desserts three ways, and were once again generously gifted a whole glass of ice wine each to pair with it. Worth noting is that their ice wines are prepared in limited batches due to limited crop, and only available for tasting/having when dining at their restaurant. So that is reason enough to book your reservation sooner than later.
We passed on the choice of their Basque Cheesecake with brandied cherry for dessert, as we already had our fill of it at their Rouge Soiree the evening before, turning to the 3 other options instead.
The 2016 Cab Franc ice wine’s distinct raisin-y sweetness paired well with the Pecan Éclair, especially as it is the heaviest and most decadent of their ice wines and this was the richest of their dessert offerings.
The Pecan Éclair with mousseline, praline, candied pecan, and pickled saskatoon berry was wonderfully prepared. Harmonious layers of texture with its crispy base, lush cream, and juicy berries.
The 2016 Riesling ice wine with its apricot forward and honey finish was paired with the Strawberry Pavlova considering their complimentary orchard fruit flavours.
Strawberry Pavlova with house made granola, coconut cream, and basil. Another stunning presentation that was fun to cut into. Airy and crisp meringue with crunchy granola. The meringue sweetened, but the basil toned with its savoury herbaceous-ness. This was Diana’s favourite of the three.
For our last dessert we were given a glass of their 2016 Phantom Creek Estate wine. This was one of their first wines, and a fairly versatile one at that. Its Chardonnay forward face paralleled well with the fragrant orange blossom of the Rum Baba.
Rum Baba, a dessert that is fun to say, but looks like a dinner roll on the plate. Cardamom diplomat, crepe dentelle, poached rhubarb, rhubarb purée, and nasturtium. This was saturated in liquid flavour, and definitely not what you expected given its look. The least sweetest out of all the dessert options, and the one I would recommend with tea and coffee to end your meal on. Although not the most exciting.
In conclusion, there is no better way to round out your visit to Phantom Creek than by enjoying a lavish and well prepared meal, at a reasonable price; served by some of the most hospitable staff available. Truly this was the cherry on top of our fulsome visit. Book mark this, and be sure to visit them on your next trip out to the Okanagan.
Phantom Creek Estates
4315 Black Sage Rd, Oliver, BC V0H 1T1