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Corrientes Argentine Pizza


The owners of the ever-popular Hermanos Restaurant and Wine Bar have graced Winnipeg with another South American inspired restaurant:  Corrientes Argentine Pizza.  Situated at 137 Bannatyne Ave, near Waterfront Drive, it is the perfect meeting place for the condo dwellers, business and arts people who have resurrected the neighbourhood.  I am guessing this is what inspired the name of the restaurant because Corrientes Ave. in Buenos Aires is home to a similar demographic.

I hope that the owners know that the space with its exposed brick walls and cozy furniture will promote lingering.  I was sat in this back room and when I found out that my lunch date was running late, I didn’t mind in the least.  Our table was tucked into the right hand corner and made for a perfect place for us to quietly get caught up on life and then business.

This light filled front room was jammed with diners when I arrived at noon but had cleared out by the time we made our way back to our cars (parking was tricky).

But to the food. I am always so appreciative when my friends are willing to order in tandem because a couple of slices of pizza and half of this gorgeous salad made for an explosion of textures and flavours.

My lunch date choose the Olmedo Salad whereby heaps of chopped romaine lettuce were adorned with sun-dried tomatoes, thinly sliced Buffalo mozarella and soft croutons.  The entire surface was then playfully, zig zagged with balsamic dressing creating this checkered-board effect.  The result was lovely for the eyes and the taste buds.

I chose a thin crust “Manitoba ” Pizza topped with pesto (pungent with garlic), bacon, goat cheese, arugula, orange zest and more sun-dried tomatoes.  The pickerel cheeks made it Manitoban but unfortunately their subtle flavour was overpowered by the other ingredients.  Orange zest on pizza was new to me but tasted exactly right in this combination.

Corrientes delivers pizza and is open from breakfast until late to accommodate the after theatre crowd.

Buenos Airies is one of the world’s great cities that I would love to visit but in the mean time, Winnipeg has its own taste of life on Corrientes St.

Corrientes Argentine Pizzeria on Urbanspoon

Kath’s quote: “Prepared and fast foods have given us the time and freedom to see cooking as an art form – a form of creative expression.”-Jeff Smith

Love-that is all.

Peasant Cookery Revisited


I had been a bit underwhelmed by my first visit to Peasant Cookery and I knew that I must have ordered incorrectly because all my family and friends who’s opinions I trust, had experienced quite the opposite.  So when when an old friend suggested that we should get together with another friend, for an early supper before attending a class that we are all involved with leading (and she was treating), I jumped at the chance.

It was one of those first rainy nights that come with autumn on the prairies and it was murky and grey outside.  Even though the bright and cheerful interior of The Peasant should have elevated our mood, I notice that even the background tone of my photos are blue/greyish.

Ah, along came just the ticket….an excellent glass of wine and a focaccia just warm out of the oven with extra crispy corners, just the way I love it.  The wine was selected from an extensive list (8 reds and 8 whites) all priced at $8. per glass.  This is reason enough for me to return.

My first friend opted for the Aged Cheddar Gnocchi (which had been on my short list as well).  The light and puffy potato pillows had been tossed with sun dried tomato, spinach, red onion , piquillo peppers and basil oil.

My second friend chose the Tourtiere (also on my short list) which was dense with meat, contained in a buttery pie crust.  The recipe was very dissimilar to the recipe that I make at home but had a hearty taste that was appropriate to warm the innards on a night such as this one.  The French Canadian pie was served with hand-cut French fries that I could not stop sneaking from her plate.

I ordered the half chicken which the menu described as being served with sage and thyme spaetzle, currents, sweet potato, leek and chicken gravy. Spaetzle is a little German dumpling that is typically boiled and then pan-fried.  This version was more like a noodle than a dumpling but I am sure that there are many variations on a theme.  The chicken was firm and moist and far easier to eat than a half bone-in chicken would have been.  The gravy was a teensie bit on the salty side.  I merrily shared and tasted bites with friends and cleaned my plate.

I understand that chef Tristan is competing in the Gold Plate Competition.  He is a talented young Chef and I wish him well.

Peasant Cookery on Urbanspoon

Kath’s quote: Often, admiring a chef and getting to know him is like loving goose liver and then meeting the goose.”-George Lang


Love-that is all.

Milestones Toronto


I kept my friend waiting at the airport as my flight was delayed and the luggage took forever to arrive.  By the time I saw her familiar, smiling face she had been urged to take a lap by the loading zone attendant.  We were hungry and anxious to get caught up and so veered into Milestone’s on Dixon Road.

Milestone’s apparently skipped the province of Manitoba when it expanded from west to east and I have never had an occasion to dine with them.  By reputation though, I knew that they were famous for an international influence and bold flavours.  Sure enough, while my friend was able to choose an Asian Citrus Steak Salad, I was talked out of the Goat Cheese and Roasted Beet Salad that I had my eye on and into the Harissa Chicken by the persuasive server.  Don’t get me wrong, she had enjoyed the dish herself and was just trying to be helpful.  I appreciate when serving staff are willing to take a gamble like this.

I refer to this as a risky suggestion because the tastes were bold indeed.  The advice was perfectly suited to my palate but may not have been for everyone.  Thinking that I may never travel to the Tunisia in North Africa, I decided that at least my taste buds could make the journey.  The brown rice, sweet potato and parsnip pilaf was chock full of flavour with tastes of lime and cilantro (if I am not mistaken).  I ate it all before I even started into the chicken which packed a nice punch in its own arena.  The chili rub was beautifully offset by a creamy Fontina cheese and an acidity was added with a lemon mint yoghurt.  My first bites of TO accompanied by sips of a lovely Malbec held promises of delicious dining ahead.

My friend and I had years to get caught up on and therefore even though I did pause long enough to get a photo of her lunch, I completely forgot to ask for a taste or inquire as to how she was liking it.  I did spy cucumbers, red peppers & onions, avocado and two kinds of Asian noodles.

Time was precious as we still had a trek downtown to get me checked into my hotel before her journey back home before rush hour. There never seems to be enough time when you are catching up with a good, good friend.

Milestone's Grill & Bar on Urbanspoon

Kath’s quote: “Time flies like an arrow. Fruit flies like a banana.”-Groucho Marx

Love-that is all.

Bonfire Revisited


Although I get a kick out of the Mom and Pop atmosphere of many neighbourhood restaurants, there are occasions when a more sophisticated ambience is appropriate.  The Bonfire Bistro on Corydon offers a slightly upscale décor, reasonable prices, excellent fare and that neighbourhood feel, all in one neat package. Recently,  I met a good friend, who is also a business acquaintance and we got caught up on family, accomplished all of our business decisions and enjoyed a delicious lunch-not necessarily in that order.

My friend chose the pasta/salad lunch combination.  On this day it was fettuccine topped with a hearty mushroom sauce, garnished with crispy bacon.  The salad greens included sweet currants, so that the sweetness of the dried fruit offset the saltiness of the bacon.  She let me plunge my fork into her plate for a sample.  Now that is a good friend.

I was tempted to have the same because I really wanted a last summer taste of the bistro’s gazpacho which was the featured soup.  Instead, our accommodating waitress provided me with just a spoonful of the chilled soup.  So I was free to order the clams, spicy sausage and artichokes from the anti-pasta section of their lunch menu.

I was trying to restrain myself, because I knew that I was going out for dinner that evening (oh, the life of a foodie) so I tore pieces of the grilled Portuguese waterbread and dipped them into the saffron marinara sauce and just had a couple of pieces of the sausage and artichoke.  The rustic recipe is a perfect lunch to take us into Winnipeg’s chilly winter.  The leftovers were packaged up for a future meal.

I can also highly recommend Bonfire’s wood-fired pizzas with a delicious sauce and decadent toppings.  Or the vermicelli with spicy marinated eggplant, wilted field greens, roasted red peppers, marinated artichokes, kalamata olives, tomatoes, green onions and feta cheese in an Aglio E Olio sauce that I have enjoyed on other occasions.  The pizzas, pastas and salads are always fresh, seasonal, hearty and perfectly prepared.  Service is more than cordial and you would have no issues getting back to the office on time if you were on your lunch hour.

Bonfire Bistro on Urbanspoon

Kath’s quote: “The whole Mediterranean … the wine, the ideas … seems to ride in the sour pungent taste of those black olives … A taste older than meat, older than wine. A taste as old as cold water.”-Lawrence Durrell

Love-that is all.

Dinner at Rudy’s Eat and Drink


This post will be a real test for me because my beloved camera passed away in the middle of our meal and unfortunately I have been unable to revive the poor thing.  I know that a good food writer should be able to make your mouth water without photos so let’s see how I do in the last half of this post.

The occasion was a special one as  J1 had requested that the four of us dine together at Rudy’s Eat and Drink AS his birthday gift.  I was surprized as we took our seats, that the restaurant was not busier.  Perhaps the fall-out from this “Jetless” time is more significant than I predicted.  This allowed us to choose a cozy booth where we settled in for pre-dinner cocktails.  J2 chose a “Dark and Stormy” which I thought was in keeping with the old school atmosphere of the place.  J1, who is currently studying to become a brew-master, went to the bar to survey the beer taps and fridges directly before making his selection.

First course were some munchies to stimulate the appetite.  The handsome server was smart enough to place the hand cut potato chips down in front of J2 and I.  We both consider ourselves kettle chip aficionados.  The plate was heaped with perfectly cooked centre cut chips and when I say “perfectly”, I mean quite well cooked by most standards.  The extra cooking time means that the gorgeous brown colour of the sugars  were revealed and the chips were especially sweet and nutty. The glistening salt that had been dusted over them meant that the expertly balanced sweet and salty taste that I crave, was achieved.

The only dish that I had tasted on a previous visit was the tuna tar-tare and this order was consistent in its presentation.  The tuna itself was fresh, cold and silky and was enhanced by the crunchy cucumber discs that it was presented upon.  Garden-fresh tomato bruschetta rounded out the choices.

At about this time, the parade of entrees bean to arrive.  First up was my gnocchi which I  have to say I was under impressed with.  I put this down to my own ignorance.  Why would I order a regional Italian dish in a retro chop bistro like this?

The rest of the entrees were exceptional though (and here’s where my creativity will have to commence).  D chose a centre cut pork chop that he provided tastes of.  The cut was beautifully trimmed and arrived just pink which is how our family enjoys our chops.  The loin (and the steaks that J1 and J2 ordered) were presented a top of a generous potato croquette which received as many accolades as the entrees themselves.  Crowning the chop was a crunchy apple crumble which I cannot wait to duplicate at home.  Just a simple adornment made an already delicious treat, that much better.

J2 had selected a beef filet that came wrapped in bacon for extra moistness and flavour.  Perhaps this had done the trick, but I suspect that the filet could have stood on its own as it was “butter-knife” tender and provided a succulence which J2 “oohed” and “ahed” over (literally).  J1 demonstrated how typical he was of our family-the special that evening seemed too good to be true and so he had to test the offering.  For $20 a sirloin was topped with sweet chili shrimp and was paired with a glass of Sapporo beer.  I could tell that J1 was enjoying every bite as he took small cuts of the steak to make the taste last.

We were all too full to consider dessert but decided to go for a night cap at the Garry St. Keg where J1 has recently worked and D and I first met.  What a gift it is to have adult children who want to spend time with you.  D and I know that we are blessed.

Rudy's Eat and Drink on Urbanspoon

Kath’s quote:  “Then there is the beefsteak. They have it in Europe, but they don’t know how to cook it. Neither will they cut it right. It comes on the table in a small, round, pewter platter. It lies in the center of this platter, in a bordering bed of grease-soaked potatoes; it is the size, shape, and thickness of a man’s hand with the thumb and fingers cut off. It is a little overdone, is rather dry, it tastes pretty insipidly, it rouses no enthusiasm. Imagine a poor exile contemplating that inert thing, and imagine an angel suddenly sweeping down out of a better land and setting before him a mighty porter-house steak an inch and a half thick, hot and sputtering from the griddle; dusted with fragrant pepper; enriched with little melting bits of butter of the most unimpeachable freshness and genuineness; the precious juices of the meat trickling out and joining the gravy, archipelagoed with mushrooms; a township or two of tender, yellowish fat gracing an outlying district of this ample county of beefsteak; the long white bone which divides the sirloin from the tenderloin still in its place; and imagine that the angel also adds a great cup of American home-made coffee, with the cream a-froth on top, some real butter, firm and yellow and fresh, some smoking hot biscuits, a plate of hot buckwheat cakes, with transparent syrup, could words describe the gratitude of this exile?” –Mark Twain

Love-that is all.

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