I'm going to let the photos tell their story, but I was invited to photograph the Tangoo gathering of influencers at the Secret Location brunch. Not only was I super excited about Secret Location's marvelous plating and food offerings; since arriving in Vancouver, I had walked by the concept store with my face plastered against the window of this curated showroom & tasting space, thinking “this is the Dream!”.Read More
Tonight marks one of the more exceptional dinner experiences in Vancouver, and that holds some weight because there is great food and many fine meals shared here. The Acorn has been a place on my list since before moving here months ago, their Instagram plates had already captivated me. Beyond that, when I heard that they cook tasty food that happens to be vegetarian I convinced I had to try it.
The dining experience is more than just a hokey description of abstract elements that surround your perception of taste. It begins with a story, which transcends the service experience, as well as the conversation and company - that carry you through the meal. A carefully curated dish considers the flavours, aromas, and textures, but if we don’t have a greater story, it is just a well-made dish. Remember your most memorable meal? yes, it was one that illicit emotion and connection with a story.
Shira, told us a story about how the whole collaboration started with a comment on their instagram feed. Instagram is the beginning of all things, clearly. A couple months later, they are boarding a flight; bags full of dehydrated carrot crumb and sea kelp to meet their shipment of curated BC wine on the other side (suffice to say only 2 boxes got delayed, success). Not only was it a great opportunity to skill share and be in a new city, but also be featured as a pop-up in the biggest food city with other like-minded veggie chefs and the who’s who of food and wine writers. Best, day, ever.
just one thing.
One thing they don’t tell you when doing pop-ups is the extent of the element of 'surprise'. The thing that stood between 'Acorn + Exhibit C collaboration' and execution was a.) a functional stove and b.) a kitchen with hot water. Never taking these things we take for granted again, the 2-days of prep time turned to just 6 hours. A few f-bombs and lots of sweating later they did it and without any negative tweets or social media (we all know how critical we can be on the other side).
I bought into their story now, but then they lead diners through a VEGAN tasting menu, sans dairy and egg! They paired it with BC wines to showcase the industry we have in BC to show the New Yorkers how we bring our A-game (in groves of Okanagan desserts and interesting minerality). Great story, great company and great conversation. I had it all.
2012 Tantalus Riesling
2012 Mission Hill Reserve Chardonnay
2013 Meyer Family Pinot Noir
2011 Laughing Stock Blind trust Red
2012 Martin's Lane Riesling
This letter to the city to discuss the development of adaptive and evolving policies in Vancouver. The issue: a neighbourhood food hub and community member who sells packaged and prepared food, has been asked to comply with zoning bylaws that do not allow a neighbourhood grocery store to serve food. An overwhelming response from the community has framed the discussion - what do you think?Read More
Pomegranates have always been one of my favourite fruits, they're exotic and have terribly staining juice and exploding seeds. What's not to like? - here's the simplest way to get your pom seeds out!Read More
If you're like me, you feel the need to vote and yet a sense of apathy for the lack of action we see in government. I've been getting more acquainted with how policy works, which means how 'decisions' are made. Bills in parliament turn into decisions, regulations, or directives.
Policy is made through all interested parties expressing their interests; government, industry, and civil society. - we are responsible for making sure our MP is responsive to the needs of our riding.
Get informed: Resources
I attended an informative voting evening where non-partisan groups spoke about some of the issues surrounding environment. Why that matters to me: because healthy ecosystems give us healthy food.
Dogwood Initiative - though environmentally-swayed, the interesting part is Dogwood sent out surveys to all BC candidates re: key issues. They did the leg work, you just need to read and decide who you align with in your riding.
Pollenize - breaks down each issue point-by-point and has a fun interactive method of engaging young voters. Click 'likes' to things you agree with and at the bottom it shows a bar representing the party you align with. PRO: super visual platform
CBC Vote Compass - it took me less than 10 minutes to complete the quiz that reflects my values and which party I should select, but downside is you don't know how responsive your MP is going to be in the case you want to communicate with them about an issue. PRO: it will represent your values on a 3D x/y graph (well worth the 10-minutes of reading) and bonus it will recalculate your results weighted on the issues you care about most!
1. identify what issues do you care most about
2. don't vote 'strategically' vote for what you believe
3. feel empowered - change starts with you.
What is my 'Canadian' identity
I can see that the decisions we make at the polls reflect what happens to our country. My specific interests are the sustainability of environment & food, balanced with health and industry. I still want funding to arts and community.
I also consider 'What I hold to be true as a Canadian.' I value our parks and fantastic natural beauty of our country, I want to preserve that while considering industry. There's lots to know and understand but that's my last-minute take in a nutshell.
Couldn't think of a better way to leave you, than this hilarious video with John Oliver. Perhaps it's that the piece ends with a singing beaver mocking Harper with a moose receiving a colonoscopy from the single pay healthcare system or the fact they likened the three-way race to 'Canadian three way' you will have to watch to find out why that's funny!
Epic-ly Calgarian, Community-centric, and historic - the Simmons Building tells a story more than anything. My oldest memories of this building date back to my childhood before the recent gentrification of the East Village. Three of whom I consider ‘hometown heroes’ have collaborated to share this space on the river; they are Phil & Sebastian Coffee, Sidewalk Citizen Bakery, and Charbar (new extension of Charcut).Read More
What do you do 2-weeks into opening? Well, knock it out of the park obviously. From the group that bring us LeTigre comes a new modern fusion pan-pacific west coast noshery.
(Early August) It’s been about month since I arrived in Vancouver and our friends were visiting from Calgary so we wanted to try something new. Being new to the city, I am seeing Vancouver with a new set of eyes. The recurring trends I see are:
1. No reservations
2. Fusion Pacific west coast cuisine incorporating a mix of asian favourites
Here's what we had at Torafuku!Read More
It started on a road trip in the magical West of Ireland with our friends visiting from Canada. We heard a recent talk on BBC Food program that talked about how sustainable oyster cultivation could be; so in light of all this, we went on a wild goose chase … or perhaps better-termed a wild [oyster] chase.Read More
The 2015 World Latte Art Championship starts today, taking place on 16-18 June 2015 in Gothenburg, Sweden. A few things you need to know about Dave Regan and the journey to the championships. This is months if not years in the making, because we had the Irish Latte Art championships in conjunction with Irish Barista Championships (IBC) in February to determine the representatives for this competition and the World Barista Championships.
Now, Latte art is not like a barista competitions and it sets itself apart as the competitors can really be neck and neck with very different designs. Dave Regan has spent several years in coffee at numerous world-class cafes including 3fe, Prufrock, and now, Vice Coffee Inc. In the competition you're required to pour 3 designs that can be distinctly different. Dave chose to link the pours creatively with some continuity; the theme was the progression or life-cycle of a birds of paradise flower. If you have every seen this, it is a beautiful tropical flower, so when Dave described it my mind was blown. He started with the blossom and then finished with the full bloom.
There are a few technical planning tips that he shared when we sat down together. At IBC, he had built a special bucket to hold his milk jugs in an ice bath - because the colder your milk the better and smoother your milk foam. Secondly, he had borrowed three clever brewers. I know, you're thinking why does one need 3 brewers for a latte art competition? Well it was to pre-portion the milk in to the jugs for steaming as the regulations state you can't pour in to the vessel prior to the competition. One element of the latte art competition is the barista's ability to replicate the same pour over again - so it must match the image provided to judges. There is a free pour and a designer pour into 12-oz. latte cups.
Today was the first day of competition and we're so proud of all the hard work that it has taken to get here. GO DAVE! We are so excited to watch you compete.
Watch Dave at 3:22!
A few of you know that we will be leaving Dublin in June... and if you didn't - I'll tell you more on here later. So as a last hurrah (and first gig), I'm playing fiddle with our friends Téada orchestra TOMORROW! There will be pipes & dancers, and a mix of music styles. One of Ireland’s leading professional sean-nós dancers, Sibéal Davitt who has performed internationally will be joining us.
You can expect trad, folk dances, and the magical harp as well!! If not, come for a few drinks after.
GET YOUR TICKETS HERE:
Highlights: we got in a great conversation with David Lebovitz whose recipe aided in my first successful batch of french macarons.
5 things you need to know about Dublin Wine Fest!:
Looking forward to galavanting the city for all the wine in the city.
Now to be honest, AJ is someone I have been admiring on instagram for a while. She is honest and transparent in her posts; she goes deep when sharing her inner musings. Her personal style comes across in her photography and writing and it transcends faith, introspection, and authentic glee for life and community!
AJ is originally from Calgary, but moved to Toronto in the last year to pursue her dreams & study culinary, food styling and photography. This month’s Women’s day blog series has been mostly Q&A’s so to switch it up, I asked her to share a little insight about her journey since moving to Toronto.
We chose to feature AJ because of her incredible eye for photographs. Too often I read her creative projects, like #40conversations project, and they articulate thoughts that resonate so well, I can only imagine that they would be point of reflection for many of our readers.
"Okay, I'll show you what I mean. On one end is what we know and on another end is what we don't know. In the middle there's this grey area. That's where ideas come from and where you'll find the building blocks required for innovation." - Omar, MD/PhD, Day 17 Have you ever been in those situations where someone's explaining something and you're nodding your head in agreement but you actually don't get it because it's nowhere near your field? Next time that happens, don't be afraid to admit your ignorance and just ask. Omar is in the business of text mining and to help me understand better he grabs a sheet of napkin and draws on it while explaining his point. It was a nice gesture because as a creative, having that visual was all I needed to get it. People are willing to put an extra effort, sharing what they know, as long as you are willing to learn as well. So meet them halfway! There is that grey area after all.
"If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?” Since I missed a conversation on Day 19, thought I’d share another one from a different day. I saw this quote scribbled on Aya's notebook and started our conversation by reading it out loud to her. It really resonated with me cause although I had just started my project (I was on Day 5) I knew already that it would be something that I would want to do for the rest of my life. Those life/inspirational quotes you post may get redundant to some but don't let that hold you back from sharing. The little things you do matter. Somewhere out there it might just be that push that someone needs in their day or that simple reminder that he/she is doing okay. #40conversationsproject #lessonsfrompeople To coincide with this post, I’ve left some prints with handwritten quotes at @650cafe. Just say hi to Stef (maybe start a conversation with him!) and mention my name/instagram and he’ll let you choose from the set.
"I think one of the biggest realizations I’ve had since moving to Toronto is that the world does not revolve around me. There are far greater things at work and if I want to make a difference especially in a city like Toronto then I have to stand on my own feet and make it happen. But that doesn’t necessarily mean that I should stand out—I only need to stand up. After all, I am just a [small] piece of the entire picture. We all have a part to play and who I am as an individual is made up of all the people around me. Whether we know each other or not, I’ve learned that each person that I encounter has a significant role and influence in my life: I am because you are." - ALEXA