Food Musings

A Winnipeg blog about the joy of preparing food for loved ones and the shared joy that travel & dining brings to life.

Casa de los Suenos-Isla Mujeres

April13

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The setting at Casa de los Suenos is beautiful and one that we gravitate to over and over again.

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On this evening it was overcast and there was no sunset to view. I would guess that it would be beautiful from there.  We settled in with cervesas and glasses of vino tinto.

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I decided upon a veggie platter. Delicious- especially with the rice, plantain and corn bread.

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D selected the margarita grilled shrimp and loved them.

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Bro K selected a combo of baby back ribs and local sausage.

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Sis L decided on the pulled pork sandwich.

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The service was helpful and cordial. The dishes came out of the kitchen lickety-split. We were going to forego dessert, when we found out that they had pecan pie on the menu. Each couple ordered a slice of to share. It was not quite as good as D’s Mom’s recipe but was a lovely treat.

Kath’s quote: I don’t think a really good pie can be made without a dozen or so children peeking over your shoulder as you stoop to look in at it every little while.”-John Gould

coralheart

Love never fails.

 

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Revamped Prairie’s Edge

April11

We had visited Food Evolution only once and had been delighted by the setting and the food. The newest manifestation of the Kildonan Park restaurant as been dubbed Prairie’s Edge and it feature’s locally inspired cuisine by one of my favourite Winnipeg Chefs-Michael Daquisto. We had been regulars at Pasta la Vista, a downtown restaurant that we really miss. I still dream about two of my favourite menu items- Felicitous & Sympatico and That Old Black Magic. While I reminisced with the creator of the dishes recently, I shared that we had never been successful in recreating the former, even though we thought we had done a pretty good job of duplicating the latter. Chef Michael suggested that he run downstairs where he archived his recipes and grab it for me. It is now safely in my possession for an upcoming celebration.

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We loved when Daquisto’s (the restaurant that bore his name) was in our neck of the woods and even though Prairie’s Edge was a significant trek for a lunch date, I vowed to take D back there soon so we could enjoy Chef’s Italian specialties again. On this day though, my friend Kathy and I had agree to be tasters for a couple of items that needed photographing.

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Kathy suggested the beet fritters and even though I typically prefer items that have not been deep-fried, these morsels were worth the indulgence. The juice from the vegetable must bleed into the batter as each bite exposed the beet’s unique colour. Served up on a slaw of orange and fennel, the contrasts were very appealing.

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A second indulgence were the Pickerel Cheek Pops. The cheeks had been dusted and skewered making for a fun presentation. The peas and garlic confit ensured the dishes’ tastiness.

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Chef Michael suggested the crispy pork belly served with braised cabbage, a parsnip puree and toasted wild rice.

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We opted for some healthy greens with the Farrow salad.

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We had spied Michael’s cinnamon buns when we had first arrived and when we couldn’t resist them any longer, we shared them for dessert. The chef is said to use a beignet dough for his cinnamon buns but I thought that it tasted more like a brioche. Regardless, when split, butters and lightly grilled, they were sensational and could tempt me to drive across town again in the very near future.

The menu revamp allows Michael Daquisto’s talent to continue to shine with local ingredients from the Canadian prairies. Prairie’s Edge was very much worth the trip.

Food Evolution Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Kath’s quote: “Anybody can make you enjoy the first bite of a dish, but only a real chef can make you enjoy the last.”-Francois Minot

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Love never fails.

 

 

 

 

 

An Evening at Fools and Horses

April8

I cannot overstate what it means to a Mom of grown up children, when they ask you to join them for a impromptu girls night out.

Beep lives in a downtown neighbourhood which she loves. She is close to all of the essentials and plenty of green space. She has made a special effort to make a couple of places an extension of her home.

Boo is also an urban neighbourhood lover and they have the cutest little apartment in an old home in West Broadway. She joined us after work before going to fetch the Frenchman from his workplace-Siloam Mission.

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Our meeting place was Fools and Horses, a lovely light-filled space where I had previously enjoyed coffee and toast on the sidewalk patio. Beep is a regular here, as are the numerous people her age perched in front of their laptops and tablets or snuggled up with a coffee sitting shoulder to shoulder.

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The food offerings are simple yet excellent. Toast is the star of the show. I ordered a sharing platter which came laden with a smoky Bothwell cheese, another artisan cheese, a couple of sliced sausage meats, roasted nuts, homemade pickles (loved the beans and ginger), espresso Dijon mustard and luscious fig jam. Pieces of just grilled bread accompanied. YUM!

Beep was drinking Half Pints, Boo a London Fog and I was sipping an Argentinian Malbec. With the pervasive clouds breaking up and a late evening sun shining through, the date completely pulled me out of a funk.

I stayed long enough to hear how’s everyone day and week was and chat about time spent with The Wee One. I knew that they needed some sister time though- an urge that is always there for me too.

Fools & Horses Coffee Company Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Kath’s quote: “If wishes were horses, beggars would ride. If turnips were watches, I’d wear one by my side. If “if’s” and “and’s” were pots and pans, There’d be no work for tinkers’ hands.”

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Love never fails.

 

Winnipeg Restaurant Suggestions

April5

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Winnipeg is known for ethnic neighbourhood restaurants, chef-focused award winning dining rooms and the best little spots for a burger, pizza or breakfast. There are so many places to choose from, it is hard to pick. Sometimes we need suggestions from our friends. This is why Canstar came up with our readers’ contest, in its second year. Once again, the entries came pouring in. Many of them, I had already written about in this space, including: Boulevard Pub and Bistro, Café ce Soir, Capital Grill, Garwood Grill, Roxie’s, Santa Anna Pizzeria Bistro and the White Rock Cafe. Places not yet visited, far outnumbered those already covered.

Here are the top selections: Begonia Grill, Common Sense Deli & Bakery, The Diner’s Grill, Jonesy’s Restaurant & Bar, Massawa Restaurant, Mercadito Latino, Miss Brown’s, Olympia Diner, The Pint Public House, Purple Hibiscus, Ripe Bistro, Rossmere Country Club and the White Star Diner.

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Without further adieu, drum roll please…..the winner of dinner with Kathryne Grisim at The Keg Steakhouse +Bar location of her choosing is-Michelle Costen! We recently met at The Garry St. Keg for photos and to discuss the best time for our meet up.

In the mean time I am interested in tasting the offerings from Chef Kevin Yu at the Begonia Grill, the Deli Rose at Common Sense Deli & Bakery, the Stuffed Bacon Cheeseburger at The Diner’s Grill, the Monster Stacker at Jonsey’s Restaurant & Bar, Wat at Massawa restaurant, Salvadorian fare at Mercadito Latino, moussaka at the Olympia Diner, Burnt Sugar Stew Oxtail at Purple Hibiscus, Shaksuka at Ripe Bistro, pickerel at Rossmere Country Club and the Screeching Chihuahua at the White Star Diner.

Kath’s quote: “There are times when we are confused because we have too many choices, and there are others when we are confused because we don’t have any choice“. -anonymous

woodenheartsLove never fails.

Smith at Inn at the Forks, Winnipeg

March31

The perfect Winnipeg “staycation” (living like a tourist in your own city)  is time spent at Inn at the Forks. I had had a rather stressful teaching day and then got stuck in traffic for extended periods of time. I was certainly ready for some down time. I could feel the stress melting off of me as soon as I checked in at the front desk of Riverstone Spa. There was soothing music playing and a delightful aroma being projected into the air.

Two of my lovely friends were already in the treatment room, so I visited with a third friend while we snuggled into our bath robes and nibbled on candied fruit, nuts and chocolate biscotti. We four were reunited when the first treatments were complete and we were just about to be hailed for our turn.

In the treatment room the estheticians kept complimenting my friend on her lovely feet and their good maintenance. Mine on the other hand did not say a thing as she kept her head down and continued to scrape away my many layers. I was non-pulsed and enjoyed every sweet moment of the treatment.

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When our treatment was done and it was time to meet again with our other girlfriends, we were hard-pressed to move a muscle and sat with our feet up, luxuriating in our fuzzy robes. Eventually we made ourselves get changed as it was time for our dinner reservation. I took a moment to have a good look around the dining room dubbed Smith as it had been renovated since my previous visit.

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Our waiter was very accommodating and gave us lots of time to place our orders. We commenced with a bottle of 14 Hands Merlot. As a result, my relaxation was complete and I could have been anywhere in the world supping with good friends.

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The four of us were on the same page when it came time to place our orders so we had a platter made up of their classic buttermilk fried chicken and the special of salmon with a seared pineapple salsa and a number of sides- the truffle oil & asiago French fries, the brussel sprouts with maple syrup & pecans and the root vegetable & yam gratin. Being good friends, no one was concerned about each of us helping ourselves from the communal plate.

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Conversation comfortably flowed as we kept nibbling on little tastes for an extended length of time. Eventually we decided that it was time that the birthday girl get to enjoy dessert so pairs of us shared lemon tarts to cap off the evening.

As we gathered our things and made our way in different directions, we savoured what it means to have best friends and such wonderful places to celebrate special birthdays.

Smith Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Kath’s quote: “A friend is someone who knows all about you and still loves you.” ― Elbert Hubbard

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Love never fails.

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