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Isla Mujeres 2016-Breakfast at Ruben’s


Ruben the man is as fascinating and Ruben the cook.

Ruben invited us for breakfast at his restaurant bearing his name, because he knew we were foodies (he was my most loyal follower when we traveled to Tuscany) and wanted our unbiased opinion of his food. When we arrived he immediately sat down with us and indicated that it was his first time back to work after completing radiation treatment (for stomach cancer) in Mexico City. He said that he was supposed to stay in bed for a week or two but that he is happiest when he is working and giving back to others.

He shared his journey with us. He is originally from Mexico City but left Mexico for the US, California specifically, to work for a better life. He fibbed to get his first job in a northern California restaurant and the owner gave him 15 days to learn how to prepare all the items on the menu. From there he worked at a variety of kitchens in California and Nevada. He received no formal or family training. Things went amiss for him in California and he was actually kidnapped until his family cleared out his life savings to free him.

He was encouraged to leave the US and returned to Mexico City, but set off again. A friend accompanied him to the bus station and floated him 500 pesos for a ticket elsewhere. He saw Cancun on one of the destination boards and had enough money to get there. Learning that Isla Mujeres was a smaller and less expensive destination, he arrived on the island. Soon after, he was depositing what was left of his money and the bank teller asked him if he wanted to apply for a credit card. He never dreamed he would be approved but says (as he glanced skywards) that someone was looking out for him. With that money he found a small house that he renovated. He went back to the bank, got a cash advance and bought all the fixings for the restaurant that he soon opened.

When we first visited he had a simple menu that he has greatly expanded since then. He is hoping that we can taste his pasta in the future. He loves everything about food and hospitality and recognizes that we do too.



Ruben suggested that we compare and contrast his two most popular eggs benedicts-the Classic and the special lobster benedict with poblano sauce. Both were sensational and we couldn’t decide on our preference. The accompanying oj, coffee and breakfast potatoes were excellent too and we were so impressed that a self trained cook could prepare dishes with such depth. We only wish we could have returned for his pasta but there are so many places to sample when we are on the island.

Kath’s quote: “Eating is so intimate. It’s very sensual. When you invite someone to sit at your table and you want to cook for them, you’re inviting a person into your life”. -Maya Angelou


Love never fails.

Gausthouse Gutenberg


We had visited Gausthouse Gutenberg once before when I was pregnant with our first child. She is now thirty years and I can’t quite believe that I had never been back. On this Sunday afternoon we did not know in advance that only a buffet lunch would be available but we were delighted as it provided us the opportunity to sample a number of authentic German recipes. German Master Chef Kurt Werner was in charge of the kitchen back when I first visited. Since then his apprentice Jereme Labelle has been passed the torch and the latter now owns the restaurant as well.

One this day we settled in and then made one trip up to the buffet table to ladle out a savoury curried mushroom suppen (soup) as our starter, clearly demonstrating that Chef Jereme’s repertoire stretches beyond German fare.



When it was time to return for our main course we had the choice of crispy schnitzel, a savoury pork roast, delectable meatballs, excellent handmade Bavarian bratwurst, perogies with fried bacon and spätzle, which is a homemade German egg noodle. All were delicious but unfortunately none were terribly hot. It was apparent that a couple of the items had been placed in the stainless steel inserts way earlier than our arrival. I would definitely recommend that you not wait until 1:30 in the afternoon to dine as we did.


German food is not typically considered “light fare” but I intentionally left room to visit the desert table. Apple strudel is one of my favourites and fruit platz (German coffee cake) is another, so it was very difficult to choose. The lovely thing about a buffet is that you do not have to decide on one and leave the other, so I am pleased to say that I got to sample both!

Gasthaus Gutenberger Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Kath’s quote: “….there are more different sausages in Germany than there are breakfast foods in America, and if there is a bad one among them then I have never heard of it. The run in size from little fellow so small and pale and fragile that it seems a crime to eat them to vast and formidable pieces that look like shells for heavy artillery. And they run in flavor from the most delicate to the most raucous, and in texture from that of feathers caught in a cobweb to that of linoleum, and in shape from straight cylinders to lovely kinks and curlycues.”-H.L. Mencken


Love never fails.


Capital Grill


The high cost of living elsewhere in Canada is proving fortuitous for the Winnipeg culinary scene as Chefs and restaurateurs who have ventured to Toronto and Vancouver return home. Such was the case with Greg and Chef Wayne Martin


Dining with a good friend at the Capital Grill meant that we could share plates when we were both undecided as to what to order for the appetizing menu of “renewed classics”. The linguine caught the attention of both of us. Neither of us are vegetarians but the promise of roasted cauliflower, tomatoes, capers, preserved lemon and crisp shaved fennel was so tempting. In the end we opted to go healthy with a Beet Salad adding both goat cheese and chicken breast but also treat ourselves with short rib poutine.


Beet salads are popping up on many Winnipeg menus these days. The pickled variety of beets took up permanent residency on our kitchen table as I grew up, to the extent that I simply ceased to see them after a while. What a pity, as the deep tones of beets by any description are now one of my favourite veggies, particularly when accompanied by blackberries, balsamic dressing, wild arugla and walnuts!


Regular readers will know that I have a soft spot for made from scratch French fries. When they were enhanced with parmesan and truffle oil, I absolutely could not resist. The Capital Grill’s version of poutine comes topped with pulled short rib meat and short rib au jus. We couldn’t detect the latter and was not overly impressed with the former. So we simply pushed the meat aside and tucked into the divine fries. Later that day I threw the short rib meat into a pasta sauce and received accolades from my husband.

The restaurant is fresh, uncluttered and light filled. We sat next to a west window and basked in the sunlight. Service is pleasant and prompt and we were impressed that the owner took a minute to come over and introduce himself to our table.

Capital Grill and Bar Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Kath’s quote: “The beet is the most intense of vegetables. The radish, admittedly, is more feverish, but the fire of the radish is a cold fire, the fire of discontent, not of passion. Tomatoes are lusty enough, yet there runs through tomatoes an undercurrent of frivolity. Beets are deadly serious.”-Tom Robbins


Love never fails.


Sweetheart Dinner at The Keg Steakhouse & Bar


When you have been married for 31 years celebrating with my sweetheart doesn’t have to occur on February 14th. D and I toast our lasting love every day (well maybe most days….).

When we were sat down at our dining room 4 person table at the St. James Keg the day after Valentine’s Day, D slid into the booth beside me. We adapted this custom after traveling to Paris where lovers sit side by side everywhere you go. Sitting shoulder to shoulder invites the sharing of food and intimate conversation and says to the persons around “this is a private dinner, please”.

keg Feb 4

D had a hankering for French onion soup likely the longest lasting item on The Keg’s menu. No wonder it has stuck around all of these years as the carmelly broth is rich with a douse of sherry and the gooey cheese is sinfully abundant. I was concerned about not having enough room for my supper so I stuck to the hot bread that had been delivered to the table. I have simple tastes and I love the taste of fresh bread and red wine together.

keg feb1

Soon after completing his soup, D’s entrée of two shrimp skewers arrived. Even though this dinner is no longer n the Keg menu, you can order it if you wish. Each wooden skewer holds five enormous shrimp so it is an abundant dinner. I thought that the shrimp were a little bit undercooked as the flesh wasn’t quite opaque but D was not concerned and ate every single bite.

keg feb2

I ordered the decadent pistachio crusted salmon which arrived perfectly prepared so that the filet was thoroughly cooked but was still juicy and moist. The garlic mashed potatoes that the filet was nestled upon were not piping hot but still satisfying and tasty. The roasted Brussel sprouts and bacon were a great accompaniment. Unfortunately we had no room for dessert (we never seem to at The Keg) and were content to finish up our wine and make it an early evening.

The Keg Steakhouse & Bar Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Kath’s quote: “I have an idea that this is what enduring love really means. Your memories of a girl at seventeen become as real and vivid as the middle-aged woman sitting in front of you. It is a happy sort of double vision, this seeing and remembering. To be seen this way is to be known.”  ― William Landay   


Love never fails.


Barlito’s Isla Mujeres



I hosted a meet up at Barlitos in March 2015. The gang was a compact one but we had a lovely time visiting with old friends and new acquaintances.



Barlito’s is located in a beautiful setting next to the channel where beautiful yachts are docked.


Check out these nachos!


Fish and chips.






Cob Salad.


Chicken nachos.

Some of the food like the supreme nachos was deemed exceptional, where other choices were just okay. Our server was not very well equipped to deal with us seamlessly. From all of the subsequent reports that I have seen, service is much improved.

Kath’s quote: “Every new friend is a new adventure… the start of more memories”.-Patrick Lindsay


Love never fails.



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