About Donald McKenzie

About Donald the Priest A priest in the Diocese of Rupert’s Land. Currently serving as Priest at St. Philip’s Norwood Anglican Church. Also serving as Priest Associate at St. Mark’s Anglican Church. About Dining With Donald This blog is focused on Food. It will feature reviews of places to eat books, and the odd recipe. I also write about what it means to gather together around food. I can be found on Twitter as @anglibubs.

Snacks: A Canadian Food History – Janis Thiessen


I received a review copy of this book through University of Manitoba Press.  I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. The official launch for Snacks will be held tomorrow, October 10th, at McNally Robinson Booksellers.  The book launch begins at 7:00 pm and will be held in the atrium of the Grant Park Store.

Snacks. A part of what makes life worth living. Snacks of course mean different things to different people. For some people snacks mean vegetables dipped in hummus or some other healthy type of dip. If you are such a person you might as well stop reading now.

Snacks: is all about those sweet, salty, deep-fried, flour caked items that bring us pleasure as we sit and binge watch Netflix. The comfort food we turn to when we gather with our families, or grab and sneak off and avoid our families(Hey! It happens). For some people snacks are integral part of their eating day, while for others they are more markers of special events

Snacks for the read

Reading material with snacks to go alongside it.

Snacks: A Canadian Good History  is the the third book by Janis Thiessen, a history professor at the University of Winnipeg, with a specific focus on labour and oral history. Thiessen shares here own memories of snacks, and how the way in which they were part of her life growing up. Snacks is a love letter to many favourite Canadian Snack foods. At the same time it recognizes that like all relationships the story of snacks in Canada is complicated with many low points as well as high points. and things are rarely exactly as they seem to be. Continue reading

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Saint Ignatius Fall Fish Fry


Each year as I compile my Fall Suppers list, I’m always on the lookout for new suppers to add. Since the season runs until about the middle of November, I keep up the search well after I’ve originally posted. This year one of the new dinners that I came upon was the Fall Fish Fry at Saint Ignatius Church.

Saint Ignatius Knights of Columbus place mats

The placemats with the Knights of Columbus logo on it.

Saint Ignatius Church is founded in memory of Saint Ignatius, the founder of the Jesuits. Among other things, the Jesuits are known as the scholar priests of the Catholic Church. In addition to the church Saint Ignatius is also home to a school running from nursery to Grade 8.

This parish is one place that despite going past it hundreds of times while living in Winnipeg, I’ve never visited. I’ve worked with people whose children have attended the school, and I’ve had friends and parishioners who have taken part in the Spiritual exercises and the healing ministry course, but never made it there myself. Continue reading

Greenish Cafe – Downtown Skywalk System


The rainy weather over the last few weeks has forced me inside more on the occasions that I am out walking. When I’m downtown this means traveling through the Skywalk system. Roughly halfway between Cityplace and Portage Place, lies Greenish Cafe, a Sushi and Salad place. There has been a sushi restaurant there for quite a few years, but I’ve never really been tempted to go in. However, over the last few months there has been a renovating of the space, and Greenish (nb the website only has phone number and email on it, so far) has emerged.

Greenish Cafe Americano

The Greenish Cafe Americano

One aspect of Greenish that caught my attention before I went in is that they have a sign advertising their coffee prices, which include a $2.00 Americano. I thought it would be worth my while to visit the place just to give the Americano a go.

A couple of other factors made me want to stop in at Greenish. One is it’s proximity to Coffee Depot, which I enjoy from time to time, and the other is that it made me think of Sushi June in the Cityplace food court that offers some really good food.

The first thing I noticed when I entered the Greenish location is that it looks more comfortable than it did before. There is a nice bench running the length of one wall, and the the tables and chairs are quite pleasant as well. the renovation has also left the place feeling more cosy as well.  Continue reading

Christ the King – Fall Supper


Last night I made it out to Christ the King Catholic Church for my first fall supper of the year. It was part of a big food day, as my lunch for the day involved taking part in our Fall BBQ at St. Philip’s. With various bits of running around and visiting I didn’t really get any photos of the BBQ. My only picture is of the marinating vegetable that I used in the pasta salad, which was my contribution to the potluck part of the BBQ.

Fall BBQ salad

These are the vegetables I used in my pasta salad. I marinated them over night before adding them to the salad.

While I didn’t get any pictures, I assure you that there was plenty of food to go around. Hamburgers, hot dogs, salads, cheese, pickles, chips, and a variety of desserts. Plus a selection of coffee, tea, and soft drinks. All your BBQ needs. With all the rain we ate our food indoors, but a special thanks should go to the St. Philip’s People’s Warden David Cain who tended the grill in the rain so that we could all eat in the dry.

Once the BBQ and the clean up was done, I got to rest for a couple of hours for heading out to the fall supper at Christ the King. This past weekend was a really busy one for fall suppers, so choosing was a little difficult.

Christ the King pie table.

A selection from the pie table at the Christ the King fall supper.

I had two reasons for going with the one at Christ the King. The first was that it is quite close to St. Philip’s just being a little ways down St. Mary’s Rd. The second was a little more personal and goes back to my time preparing for the priesthood.*

*You can skip down toward the bottom if you only want the dinner recap. Continue reading

Sargent Taco Shop – Tam’s Pho


Generally I do reviews of restaurants separately, but today I’m doing a review of both Sargent Taco Shop and Tam’s Pho. While the cuisine is different, and one is trying to replicate a distinctive vibe, they have a couple of things in common that make for a good review.

Tam's Pho water.

A glass of lemon water from Tam’s Pho.

The first is that they are both small establishments. Sargent Taco has one table and a few stools, but advertises itself as a take-out restaurant. Tam’s Pho has a little more seating space, but also does a lot of take-out business. The second is that they are both located on busy main streets. Sargent Taco not surprisingly is on Sargent Avenue, and Tam’s Pho is on Portage Avenue. The third is that they are both on the lower end of the scale as far as price is considered. You can get a good meal, cheaply at either restaurant. The fourth is that while the cuisine is different both serve really good food.

Quick and Easy to Go

My friend David Driedger, who I had visited The Mami Project with, had put a post on Facebook that his favourite Mexican restaurant was reopening. He didn’t give a location, but as I was walking down Sargent one evening, I saw The Sargent Taco shop was open and figured it must be the place. Continue reading