French Onion Soup
It’s officially Fall! Aka, soup season.
Though I am definitely more of a summer person, I do love Fall because of all the amazing soups. One of my favorites being French Onion!
I was super excited to do this particular challenge because French Onion Soup is so hearty and is the ultimate comfort food. What better than to have a big warm bowl of steaming hot soup on a crisp Fall day?
That being said, I knew this would be a more difficult challenge because there are a lot of bad French Onion Soups out there. Sometimes the onions are burnt, the cheese is clumpy, or the caramelization has gone wrong. French Onion Soup is a lot of work to make as the onions have to be cooked slowly so they develop flavor. At the same time, this requires attention to detail with not rushing the cooking process and burning them all together. All about finding the balance.
So what components make a great French Onion Soup?
–the onions – The soup must be loaded with caramelized onions. I hate when the soup is stingy with onions…it is called French ONION Soup right?! They need to be slowly cooked so the depth of flavor can be created. I personally love Vidalia onions as my onions of choice.
–the cheese – Nothing is worse than clumpy hard cheese. The cheese needs to be melted on top of the bread (even down the side of the bowl). I would recommend Gruyère cheese.
–the bread – French Onion Soup absolutely needs to be topped with that big slice of bread. Comfort food people. French baguette is the way to go.
Now let’s take a look at where we went:
I had very high expectations for Bouchons as it’s a fine dining French restaurant here in Kelowna. Presentation wise, the soup was served on a beautiful plate with the cheese perfectly melted on top. Breaking through the crust was heavenly, which is exactly what you want when you have your first bite. However, the broth didn’t blow me away like I thought it would and I found it lacked some flavor – could’ve maybe used more salt? But I did quite enjoy how this particular French Onion Soup wasn’t super heavy compared to how some French Onion Soup can be. This is also a very expensive version of French Onion Soup, but is to be expected with a restaurant caliber such as Bouchons.
Gast Haus is a very unique restaurant located just outside of Kelowna in Peachland. This is a german restaurant right on the lake, very popular in the summer time. In terms of their French Onion Soup, I was quite disappointed. This wasn’t your typical French Onion Soup as the bread served with it was a pretzel bun, and the bread inside the soup was marble/brown bread. Wasn’t sure how I felt about brown bread in French Onion Soup. The cheese also was served in one big clump – not melted whatsoever. However, I appreciated the spices that were used to give some flavor and the unconventional spin on a classic dish.
Lastly, we checked out French Onion Soup pub style at Brandts Creek! I actually was pleasantly surprised with their soup. I enjoyed the broth and the onions and the cheese was perfectly melted. The soup was served with a big slice of bread topped with green onions. It was tricky breaking the bread into the soup as the bread slice was so large and awkward but once you managed, it was pleasant. Overall, I found Brandts version of French Onion Soup very classic, no crazy bells and whistles.
So who was the winner?
What do you mean there is no winner Jenna?
I hummed and hawed over who the winner should be. But you know what, I wasn’t blown away by anybody. The soups were good but I’m here to tell you where the best sh*t in Kelowna is!! Pardon my “french” 😉 But if I’m being honest, none of the soups checked all the boxes.
So I wasn’t going to lie to you guys and say I found the best French Onion Soup in Kelowna. I have had some pretty decent ones at some chain restaurants in the past, but we’re not talking chain restaurants here. We’re talking about local. Want to support those local eateries.
I’ve actually made home made French Onion Soup and that is the best. Home made always wins right?
So there you go. The first #stuffwithsvetfoodchallenge without a winner.
Until next time!