A cross-country gift from a friend who knows what a hobbyist likes: to eat.

What else do you get a hobbyist who you know to famously love to…well, eat? Recently a friend of the hobbyists found the ticket…a beautifully packaged of still-frozen Soupe aux champignons sauvages avec huile de truffle - or Wild Mushroom Soup with Truffle Oil – flown (almost) directly from Les Fougères near Gatineau, Québec.

Les Fougères is a restaurant not 14 miles from Ottawa / Gatineau that has deservedly been winning accolades for several years for its delicious cuisine and commitment to showcasing local ingredients. It had been on our hit list of restaurants to enjoy back east for some time – and when this hobbyist started finishing an Ottawa-based friend’s sentence about this amazing restaurant that he had recently tried, he knew exactly what to bring out on his next trip west.

This frozen gift sure didn’t last long – a couple quick tears and the package was opened faster than a five year old at Christmas. A few flashes in the pan later and two gorgeous bowls of fragrant wild mushroom soup took us far from Gastown and into the wilds of the Gatineau Hills as if we had been on a foraging trip ourselves that very afternoon. The soup was textured with lovely pieces of wild mushrooms and certainly not overshadowed with cream, but rendered fairly velvety in between these mushrooms through a healthy amount of cream and crème fraîche. While a lover of truffle oil, it can too often be overpowering when used with too heavy a hand – but this soup, it gave a whole new credit to truffle oil.

And the big reveal was over too quickly – and we were on the intertron as fast, to grovel to our friend to take another drive out to Les Fougères for some more take-out soup. We will definitely be taking a drive on our next trip to Toronto through Prince Edward County and on to the Gatineau Hills to experience this local gem ourselves. An admittedly long drive, yes, but well worth it. Until then, while scoping out their website, we learned that they are generous with sharing their recipes both on their website and in a cookbook, A Year at Les Fougères, that has been released to rave reviews. Check it out and let us know what you think – and don’t be surprised if you see us lauding some of their great recipes on our site soon!

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