Almost immediately ensuing its 2017 opening in Edmonton’s charming Ritchie neighbourhood, Biera and the inventive Prairie and European-influenced cuisine of head chef Christine Sandford began receiving national acclaim.
Chef Sandford, whose accolades include a sojourn at the helm of Michelin-starred In de Wulf in Belgium and a role as chef de partie in its spinoff, De Superette, has found a playful harmony between complexity and approachability at Biera with an array of local-ingredients-forward dishes that are both thought-provoking and pleasing to the palate.
While the restaurant inside Blind Enthusiasm brewpub may seem like an obvious lunch destination to most, Biera’s cuisine employs meticulous processes that can take days to complete, and chef Sandford says she wanted to ensure the pieces were in place to execute lunch services at the same consistency patrons have come to expect.
“We had always kind of planned on doing lunch at Biera--I just wanted to take our time focusing on dinner first,” Sandford explains. “Our lunch menu reflects the same quality as our dinner menu but with a few fun new options.”
Despite only having one week of lunch service under its belt, the menu’s fun new offerings have already garnered plenty of praise. Sandford says the frontrunner for the title of new crowd favourite is likely her take on chicken katsu, which uses Biera’s beloved house-baked sourdough bread to the crust the ACME Meats chicken, and features beautiful local hydroponically-grown butter lettuce along with Thai basil and a sour cream and pickled jalapeño dressing.
In addition to a spectrum of somewhat smaller items like crispy potato cakes and Fogo Island crab rolls, Biera’s lunch menu also includes a delicious miso bouillon made with a house-made heirloom corn miso that is whisked into a roasted chicken bouillon and served with Alberta grains, leeks, and preserved Saskatchewan chanterelles.
Biera’s new lunch service runs Wednesday to Sunday from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. From Wednesday to Saturday, the restaurant will also feature a small afternoon menu until dinner service begins at 5 p.m.