Tour Time Returns Downtown


Over the last couple of years, I’ve gone on a couple of the Downtown Biz tours. Last year I did the Tap In tour, and the year before that I went on the Patio Tour. This year, Susan Ainley, tour co-ordinator invited me, along with a group of other social media inclined folks to join her on this year’s edition of the patio tour.

Tour Classic Caesar

It was National Caesar Day. This is the Classic Caesar from Pony Corral.

One of the first things I noted was that the list of participating restaurants this year was different from the Patio Tour I went on a couple of years ago. Patios in the downtown continue to grow, and so there are always lot’s to choose from.

Patio Stops

Our gathering spot for the day was the patio at Pony Corral on St. Mary Avenue. It was beginning to cloud over but we still managed to find some sun for ourselves. Besides Susan and myself, our social media group consisted of Craig and Michelle Hologroski, Natalie (PegCityLovely) Bell, Lindsay Somers, Cory Beal, and Jaime Vales-Riench. For our first two stops we were also joined by Tineke de Jong of the Downtown Biz.

Being National Caesar day, I made the Classic Caesar, shown above, my drink of choice at Pony Corral. Continue reading

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Stone Soup Sharing, Caring


This year marks the 5th Annual Stone Soup Fundraiser. The Stone Soup Fundraiser serves to raise money to support the programs of the Child Nutrition Council of Manitoba. The council is a volunteer organization that lends support to schools that run breakfast and other feeding programs in their schools. (what goes into a program can be found here). At present there are 165 schools* that receive support split evenly between Winnipeg and other areas of the province.

*I was informed after publication that the number of schools helped has now reached over 200.

The fundraiser is Wednesday, March 22, 11:15 am to 1:15 pm, Manitoba Hydro Place, 360 Portage Avenue. Tickets are $10,00 which let you taste three soups along with bread, water and fruit being available. I have a noon service so I’ll be there as soon as it opens at 11:15 am. Look for the guy in the dog collar and come and say hello.

I’ve taken in the Fundraiser for the last couple of years. I wrote about my experience back in 2015. The Council is something I believe in because it offers not only healthy food alternatives, but it teaches children skills in the kitchen, and brings them together to eat.

This year, Viola Prowse, head of the council, got in touch with me and asked if I would be interested in writing something about the event. I happily said yes. I was sent a list of the restaurants involved and noticed right off that there was a fair bit of turnover from previous years. It turns out this is in part because there are so many restaurants and/or chefs wanting to be part of this event.  Continue reading

Berry: Bringing it to the Table


If you write about food long enough the name Wendell Berry will eventually come up. Berry, a Kentuckian, is a farmer, poet, novelist, and food activist. Bringing it to the Table: On Farming and Foodbrings together some of his thoughts on those subject spanning the last four decades.

Berry cover

Cover shot, Bringing it to the Table

Bringing it to the Table is a collection of Berry’s essays, focused on farming and farmers, along with a selection of his fiction dealing with the subject of food and eating together. The first two sections, on farming and farmers make up the bulk of the book.  Continue reading

Blogger Night Out – Bouchee Boucher


About 6 weeks ago, I reviewed Bouchee Boucher, the new restaurant just down the street from St. Philip’s.  A little while later I received an invitation to a blogger evening at the restaurant. Naturally, having enjoyed myself previously, I made sure to set aside the time to attend.

The evening started at 6 pm. Upon entering we were welcomed and offered a Manitoba 16 cocktail. This beverage is made with 204 gin, chokecherry syrup, and Cava. It’s a fine sweet and tart combination. It was served with a spoonful of jam that added a nice finishing touch.

Blogger evening cocktail

204 Cocktail.

I was the first to arrive along with Alan and Amanda Pineda. While we waited for everyone to come together we wandered around the butcher shop area while enjoying some Duck Heart with Jalapeno Cream Cheese Dip, Fried Okra, with a Spicy Green Chili Sauce, and Roasted Chick Peas. Continue reading

Vinyl Revival – Open Mic Night


Last Wednesday after work, I grabbed a bus and headed out to Vinyl Revival. Vinyl Revival, is a record shop, music school, performance site, and coffee shop all rolled into one. VR,as it is also called, is located in the old Tredwell’s Music store site just behind the Safeway at Pembina and McGillivray,  Many years ago it was the place to stop in when I needed sheet music or choral scores.

The Performance area at Vinyl Revival.

The Performance area at Vinyl Revival.

Walking in, you’ll find a couple of sections where of LPs. The performance area is against the back wall to your right as you enter. There’s a small area where the beverages are served and where you can make your LP purchases. Finally scattered around the room there is a great selection of tables, chairs, and sofas for you to sit in while you listen to the tunes.

Door repurposed as a table top.

Door re-purposed as a table top.

Vinyl Revival is the brainchild of Darren Sawchuk. Darren’s story has been told several times in recent months. His diagnosis of untreatable brain cancer, has not stopped him from performing, and it also hasn’t stopped him from turning Vinyl Revival into a place where seasoned musicians and young people looking to make music can come together to perform and support each other. One way this happens is through the Wednesday night Open Mike evenings.  These generally start around 7 pm and run for three or four hours. Continue reading