Carbone Coal Fired Pizza – Downtown


While downtown Winnipeg is changing and there are many new buildings and new restaurants popping up, it’s still a bit of a desert around lunch time on Saturday’s. Hopefully when the new True North Square and other projects get completed enough people will be down early on the weekends to get more places open for lunch.

However, it’s not all bad. First of all, it made me do a little more walking, and given the amount of food I consume as part of writing this blog, the extra exercise is never a bad thing. Second, it took me back to Carbone Coal Fired Pizza on St. Mary Avenue.

Carbone Soup

The soup of the day from my first visit to Carbone Coal Fired Pizza.

My first experience of Carbone was about 10 months ago, when I visited as part of the Downtown Biz 2017 Patio tour. On that tour we had the opportunity to taste the White and the Tyrol pizzas. Both were excellent. This time around I would try some of the other dishes they offered.

Carbone Soup and Salad

Carbone opens at 1:00 pm on Saturday, and it was an hour or so after that when I wandered in. There is a dining and a bar area in the restaurant. Continue reading

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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

Fresh Food Refreshes Market


The Farmers Market run by Downtown Biz at the MB Hydro building is now in it’s 4th year. Not surprisingly it continues to evolve and change. Old vendors leave and fresh, new vendors arrive. This year has seen several new stalls appear. I won’t be going over all of them, but a few of them are making the market more interesting. Hours for the market are 10 am – 3 pm.

The Bar Lady:

Fresh Cashew Bar

The Cashew Bar, my favourite among the Bar Lady’s offerings.

One of my frequent stops this year has been at The Bar Lady table. These small, rich chocolate bars are a delight. They are dark and creamy, without being overly sweet. My preferred bar is the Cashew. However, I like all the flavours I’ve tried. These bars also come with an interesting backstory. Chelsea Szachury, The Bar Lady, started selling them to pay off her students loans. One of these bars is a must have every time I stop by the market. The bars are marketed as being “healthy, vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free, and 100% addictive.” I think the first four descriptors could be dropped entirely. 100% addictive is all that you need to know.

One other thing to know. These bars melt very quickly, so store them in a cool place. I get around this by eating the bar immediately upon purchase.  Continue reading

Tap In Tour Downtown


Each summer the Downtown Biz offers a series of tours to allow people to sample some of the many food and beverage offerings in the downtown. Last year I was given the opportunity to go on the patio tour. This year I had hoped to go on the breakfast tour, but those are on Sunday’s and for some reason my parish expects me to be at church those days. However, when that didn’t work out, Emily Ormonde, the tour coordinator for Downtown Biz kindly switched me over to the Tap In Tour. You can find out more information on the various tours here.

Tap In Quiche

Goat Cheese Quiche from Shannon’s Irish Pub.

The secret to making a tour like this a success is having a good tour guide. Susan, our tour guide, did an excellent job. In addition to getting us from stop to stop in good time, she took us along to a couple of other spots downtown, to see some of the interesting activities taking place. 

It was an interesting evening. When I arrived I discovered that I was the only person on the tour who was not part of a group. This for me is usually a recipe for disaster. As an introvert among introverts, meeting new people is always difficult. This is especially true when I’m in big groups. However, as the evening went on, I found he various small groups to be quite welcoming which made the event quite enjoyable Continue reading

Patio Proliferation Enlivens Downtown


If you read this blog fairly regularly you know that I’m a fan of Food Trucks. I enjoy being able to eat my meals outside. Yet, there’s more than one way to enjoy outdoors dining. Winnipeg also has a large number of patios where you can enjoy you food and drink. Patio dining allows you to watch the world go by and engage with friends and strangers as they pass by on the street.

For years people in Winnipeg have tended to associate patios with Corydon Avenue but over the last few years the numbers of patios in the downtown has increased quite considerably. Back in 2006 there were 22 patios downtown. At that time the Downtown Winnipeg Biz started encouraging the restaurants among their members to add patio space. In the nine years since the number of patios has increased by almost 75%, to where there are now 36 patios downtown.

Clay Oven Patio

A corner of the patio outside of Clay Oven

Continue reading

Food Truck Wars at ManyFest


ManyFest has arrived, and with it the Food Truck Wars.  I plan on writing a couple of reviews over the weekend, but today I’m starting with a post about the day itself..

Food Truck Wars SignThere was a bit of bad news about the day, so I’ll dispense with that first. The Food Truck Wars got off to a bit of an inauspicious start. Two or three trucks were without power to start the day. A few more weren’t ready to serve at the 11 am starting news. However that’s most of the bad news. The other bit of bad news is that while they did away with tickets (good) they also did away with the sampling menu (bad).

With 20+ trucks out at the event, paying for full-sized portions limits the number of trucks a person can try. Partly because of the dollar cost, partly because that’s simply too much food, unless your name is Kobayashi.

Food Truck Wars Good News:

The good news in all of this is, you’re bound to find something you like. Oneadvantage of an event like the ManyFest Food Truck Wars is that all the trucks are arranged within one block. This means you don’t have to travel several blocks of Broadway to see who is out. Of course, you do burn more calories that way. Continue reading

Food Truck Power Rankings-2014


Update:

Today marks the beginning of the ManyFest Food Truck Wars.  Since I originally published this post, I was only able to finish one of the three trucks I still wanted to review. That was Waki Temaki. If you scroll down you will find where they rank. I never found UpSouth, and only made one trip to Grass Fed Grill. I hope I can remedy that this weekend.

If you see me at ManyFest, stop by and say hello. Also, if you try any of the trucks over the weekend and would like to leave your opinions, just post a comment on the site. I will respond to it.

Food Truck Rankings in this Post are provisional.  There are some new trucks I haven’t gotten to and some I hope to revisit before ManyFest.

On A Roll Food Truck Menu

Sadly they are no longer on the streets of Winnipeg.

This is my second Power Rankings post for the Winnipeg Food Truck scene. I wrote one at the start of ManyFest last year. My explanation of power rankings is in that post. Since yesterday marked the roll out of the 2014 Food Truck Wars, I thought it once time to post a new one. ManyFest Food Truck wars run from September 5-7. This year there will be a new truck atop my rankings. Last year’s champ On A Roll decided that they wouldn’t operate this year.

There will be a couple of trucks not listed. Since almost all the food trucks are in the competition I will only including the ManyFest. If a truck isn’t on here, you still should try it out when you see it. Like with the Le Garage truck last year, trucks that I haven’t visited will be given a N/R (not ranked) rating. These are the trucks I hope to get to before ManyFest. That means that means Beaujena’s, Mikky’s, Sis ‘n Me. and Extreme Fries are not on the list. Still check them out if you can.

Please remember, that although a truck may land on the bottom of the power rankings, you should still give it a try. This is meant to be fun. Plus, it’s skewed towards my favourites.

Food Truck Power Rankings: 2014

1.) Poutine King

I commented last year that this truck would rate higher for me if it was on Broadway more. Also in addition to great food, makes good use of Social Media to promote the truck.

The Poutine King

2.) Red Ember

Dividing time between Broadway and the St. Norbert’s Farmers Market. Red Ember has quickly become a fan favourite. Also, North America’s biggest food truck. Continue reading