There may be pizza places aplenty in Whistler, but when it comes to this infamous Italian delight, there’s always room for one more, right?
Marc Latreille, a Whistler resident for the past 14 years, is the new owner and operator of Panoli’s Pizzeria, which is set to open up shop in the former Red Dragon Chinese Eatery, next door to Splitz Grill, in a few short weeks.
As someone who digs the odd slice of ’za, I’m looking forward to a new option for my cheesy indulgences, and it sounds like Latreille is ready to deliver the goods, both literally and figuratively.
“I’m a huge pizza lover and there’s good pizza in town, but I want to provide great pizza,” Latreille said.
There are quite a few solid pizza joints in town, already: Daily Slice, Fat Tony’s, Domino’s, Boston Pizza and Avalanche, just to name a few. So what makes Panoli’s stand apart from the rest?
Well, apparently, they aren’t your average pizza pies — Panoli’s pizzas are cooked in a deep-dish pan, Sicilian-style, which means they use generations-old dough recipe, with a higher protein flour to produce a breadier, solid crust. Then, they put an international spin on the traditional recipes, adding ingredients from around the world.
And the meat-loving pizza eaters amongst us can breathe a collective sigh of relief — thanks to Panoli’s on-site rotisserie, we can forever bid adieu to the flavourless cubes of chicken that are all too often scattered across the top of a pizza. Instead, Latreille said their chicken pizza offers up big chunks of fresh, succulent meat, which are infused with the original __ seasonings. And if you don’t feel like combining your meaty treat with pizza, you’ll also be able to get rotisserie chicken dinners and ribs to satisfy your carnivorous cravings.
“We’re going to have quarter chicken dinners, half chicken dinners, that’s going to come with a choice of sides; potato salad, roast potatoes,” Latreille said, adding that they will also be offering family-style orders and buffet catering for larger crowds.
“With food prices going through the roof, a lot of places cut back on cheese… the cheese is the most expensive part of a pizza,” Latreille explained.
But Panoli’s customers won’t have to worry about losing their gooey toppings.
“We’re going to compromise our food costs a little bit, and have a little bit higher food costs to make an amazing pizza,” he added.
That doesn’t mean the prices are going to be through the roof — Latreille points out that their 18-inch by 18-inch party pizza, amongst many options, will be quite economical.
As a long-time Whistler resident, Latreille also appreciates the value of a dollar, and plans to offer a special local’s day every Wednesday.
He’s still in the process of receiving all of the necessary permits and approvals, but Latreille hopes to serve his first pizza the first week of October.
Check out their website at www.panolispizza.com .
Beat the crowd for CRUSH
Whistler’s food and wine aficionados are practically rubbing their hands in glee, in anticipation of the impending celebrations during the 12 th annual Cornucopia, which is the first week of November.
The popular five-day celebration of food and drink features a myriad of popular workshops, tastings and more, including the popular CRUSH Gala Grand Tasting, which is known to sell out quite rapidly. Last year, organizers doubled up on the CRUSH festivities, offering a second night to meet the high demand. And this year, the new organizers of the festival, Watermark Communications Inc., are changing the signature event up, yet again, including a multi-course dinner at one of 16 Whistler restaurants along with the price of admission to the CRUSH festivities, which are being held on Friday, Nov. 7 and Saturday, Nov. 8.
The new three-tiered ticket option is priced from $100 to $130, offering a range of set menus to choose from.
“The new tasting and dining ticket packages for CRUSH are a great opportunity for participants to indulge in culinary delights the restaurants will put on show and I am happy to see the ticket sales are going so well,” said Andre St. Jacques, founder of the Bearfoot Bistro and noted contributor to the annual festival.
After enjoying their meals, CRUSH attendees will make their way to the Sea to Sky ballroom at the Telus Conference Centre where more than 75 wineries from France, the United States, Australia, Japan, Spain, Italy, Argentina, Chile and Canada will be on hand offering up a selection of wines from around the world. Don’t worry if you didn’t quite fill up during dinner, either; there will also be roving samples from Natural Pasture’s Cheese, bread from Terra Bread, Lindsay Olives, Tim Tam Cookies, and Rogers Chocolates.
To view the set menu options, and purchase tickets to CRUSH or any other Cornucopia events, visit www.whistlercornucopia.com .