Verde Juice Bar – Westminster Avenue

Verde Juice Bar is one of two new places on Westminster Avenue. I ended up there on my first visit, because Joy’s Tea which is next door was closed. The decor at Verde is the same as many of the newer restaurants opening. Lot’s of light wood, and wooden type sign boards and menu. Pleasant enough, but after awhile there seem little to distinguish one place from the next as far as appearance goes.

Menu on the table

Verde Juice Bar Table with Menu.

Verde Juice Bar for Beverages

My first trip to Verde I was meeting with my friends Graham MacFarlane and Aaron Peterson to discuss a pilot project for a Sunday Evening service at St. Philip’s. Arriving late in the afternoon we ordered drinks but no food. It was a little chilly that day, and I decided on a hot chocolate. I can’t remember what Aaron ordered, but Graham ordered the Pineapple Express smoothie, which he enjoyed. Continue reading


David and Jonathan by Gerauschbiest

This review of David and Jonathan is the first of my arts post that will be appearing over the course of time. Good food and good art belong together and so they will be joined on Dining with Donald.

Last night, at St. Margaret’s Anglican Church, I had the opportunity to attend a performance of David and Jonathan, a new work by Geräuschbiest. Geräuschbiest is a collaboration between brothers Jesse and Thomas Krause. There is another performance tonight, June 6, 2015, at 8:30 pm. I highly recommend that you attend.

In addition to the brothers, David and Jonathan featured the involvement of the Riel Gentlemens Choir, Antiphony, and the Standing Mammals Chamber Choir.

Although an oratorio, David and Jonathan is more than a listening experience. It starts with the visuals. The chancel at St. Margaret’s was dominated by Bass Bones, a marvelous stringed creation that brings sounds that not only hit upon the ear but also enter into your bones. David’s harp, built by Jesse, has both the ability to sooth and discomfort.

The performance began with Jesse Krause’s setting of the poem They Call you to Sing, by 13th century Persian poet Hafiz. The lyrics of the poem, which unfortunately were not part of the printed program, are printed below: Continue reading

Communion Bread for Easter

I have a confession to make. I really don’t like Communion Wafers. I appreciate that they are good to take when I go on a hospital visit. They are a whole lot less messy. However, when celebrating the Eucharist with the parish I want a good Communion Bread.

I’m not planning on getting to arguments here about whether Christ really is or isn’t in the bread we eat and the wine we drink. However, I found it interesting in today’s reading for Acts 10, when Peter is telling Cornelius about Jesus’s Resurrection, he mentions that Jesus didn’t appear to everyone, only those who had eaten and drank with him. I think the celebration of the Lord’s Supper, should revolve around substantial food, (you can argue amongst yourselves whether it be trans or con).

This is one of the things I appreciate about the Eucharist at St. Margaret’s. They almost always use real Communion Bread. Two years ago I did a Lenten study on bread making as a spiritual discipline. It was taught by Ryan Stoesz a parishioner of St. Margaret’s and a baker at Tall Grass Prairie at the Forks.

Our last session involved the making of Communion Bread. The bread I made I used for the Easter service at St. Mark’s one of the parishes I serve. This year at St. Philip’s we were holding several baptisms as part of our Easter celebrations. I decided to make the bread for the service. Ryan’s recipe is below, and I have some pictures of the process.

Communion Bread:

3c white flour
2c whole wheat flour
1.5tsp salt
2tbsp sunflower oil
2tbsp honey
Enough water to make a firm and dense dough. Approx. 2c, but could be more or less.

Continue reading

Carlos – Murphy’s, Osborne

Last Wednesday I met up with the Why Cook Wednesday’s Supper Club from St. Margaret’s, over at Carlos & Murphy’s. It’s been a while since I’ve gotten together with this group. However, scheduling and everything worked out and I was able to reconnect.

The group meets more frequently during Lent, which may seem a little odd. Dining out during a time associated with giving things up. However, the more frequent meetings serve as times of connection. Relationships can get lost during the rush of daily living, and sometimes the thing that we need to most give up is our focus on ourselves. Being with others on a regular basis is a good way to do that.

Carlos and Murphy wings

The wings from Carlos and Murphy. The lighting was quite dark, which shows up in all the pictures.

One of the reasons I sometimes miss meeting with this group is that I forget to RSVP my intentions when reservations are needed. I had forgotten to do so again this time, but decided to show up anyway thinking that 6:30 on a Wednesday evening would likely not be too busy at Carlos and Murphy’s. I wandered over to Osborne Village to happily discover that I had reasoned correctly.

Continue reading

Standing on Guard – Dessert Fundraiser

This last week has been a very busy week. The twin themes of food and remembrance have been at it’s heart. On Tuesday, there was the Remembrance Day service and Roast Beef Dinner at St. Philip’s. Friday, I received a basket of MB holiday goodies.  Friday was also my usual time of cooking for my Confirmation class. Today, I cooked for the Saturday evening service at St. Margaret’s. Afterwards. I enjoyed desserts as part of the Standing on Guard, fundraiser.

Standing on Guard consists of six videos chronicling the history of the six military units that have made Manitoba their home. The six are The Queen’s Own Cameron Highlanders of Canada; The Royal Winnipeg Rifles; The Fort Garry Horse; 2 Bn Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry; The Winnipeg Grenadiers; and 38 Service Battalion. Each of the videos is about half an hour long.

The videos are the work of Jon Ted Wynne. A long time member of the Manitoba Theatre Community, particularly in conjunction with his company The King’s Players. We also share a bit of a bond. Not only did Jon Ted direct me in the Christmas Pageant at Church of the Way one year, we were also baptized together, some 25 years ago. Continue reading

Coffee Culture, Thom Hiebert

For the last year and a half or so, St. Margaret’s Anglican Church has been offering a Thursday Night Lecture Series. Some of the lectures focus on deep theological issues, such as next weeks lecture by David Widdicombe, the Rector, on Wars & Rumours of Wars. Other evenings have seen members of St. Margaret’s present on their art. Still others, such as last night’s lecture on Coffee Culture, by Thom Hiebert, of Thom Bargen Coffee & Tea, see members of the broader community of which the parish is part offer lectures on various topics.

Fresh Coffee Culture:

I guess I would have to consider myself as someone on the fringes of coffee culture. I visit coffee bars such as Thom Bargen on a semi-frequent basis. I also attended the Prairie Barista Championships in the hopes of learning more about the world of coffee.  So, I’m always interested in hearing stories about why such places exist and what they mean to people. Continue reading

Tall Grass Prairie (Forks)

Tall Grass Prairie Bakery started off in the Wolseley neighbourhood of Winnipeg. It’s a place I had long been aware of, but didn’t really visit often, until I started to be involved at St. Margaret’s Anglican Church. Many of the members there are long-term, loyal customers. It was only recently that I learned part of the reason for that, was that the bakery had it’s beginnings in the basement of the church.

From those beginnings it has grown into something of a Winnipeg institution.  It now has two locations.  The original Wolseley one, and the one at the Forks.  It’s the Forks location that I most frequently visit. The Forks also has Grass Roots Prairie Kitchen, where prepared take home meals, and a variety of preserves and other locally produced food stuffs are available.

Tall Grass sign

Sandwich board sign for Tall Grass Prairie Bakery.


Tall Grass Tastiness:

One of the things I like about Tall Grass, is the fact that you can get anything from a sweet snack to a full meal.  In addition to baked goods and breads, they offer soups, sandwiches and a few other menu items.   The other day I stopped for lunch, and had a half-sandwich, savoury bannock, and a Gingersnap.  The tree items together came to just over $6.00 including tax and made for a light but satisfying lunch. Continue reading