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Pop Sodas Coffehouse Gallery


Pop Sodas Coffeehouse Gallery was the perfect location for the Frenchman’s surprize birthday party.  Daughter #2 searched far and wide for a place that would be casual and laid-back just like she and her beau and yet stimulating and fun to match the occasion.  When we arrived, we were told that a birthday party was just clearing out: the place was filled with young couples, toddlers and babies-we had come to the right place!

There are a variety of rooms strung together which different vibes given off by each.  All are a comfortable collection of miss-matched chairs and tables or huge overstuffed couches pulled together for conversation and to put your feet up.  A local artist has used the walls as her canvas and the result is gorgeous.

When the birthday boy arrived, he was surprized (to say the least) by the accumulation of friends from different pockets of his life.  But best of all, was when he spotted his sister who had flown in from Peterborough that morning.  She was with their Aunt, Uncle and cousin and as is often the case in Winnipeg, various extended family members who were introduced to them, realized that there were a variety of common touch-points in our lives.  In fact, they live on the street where I grew up and our Mom still resides.

But, onto the food.

This was a piled high Rueban

and the smoked chicken and mozzarella.

It turns out that the owner Joseph is from Naples where pizza was invented so it is no surprize that his version is very tasty and authentic.  Sister #2 had this ricotta and smoked chicken version.

D, I and Daughter #1 shared their Pissed Off Chicken nachos that put us in an angry mood-jk.  There were very different and we were impressed whereas when the birthday boy ordered them, he was so busy visiting and chatting with people that his got pretty soggy.

The bruschetta was fabulous-very garlicky and the tomatoes were screaming out their freshness.

I got a forkful of the baklava -mounds of walnuts and almonds which had been drenched in honey and and spices.

D was very impressed with the banana cream pie and he knows his pie!  He remarked that the flaky crust was homemade and the banana essence was allowed to be very prominent.  There was a custard layer and he predicted that more custard had been whipped into the whipping cream.

We’ll be returning as soon as possible for more tastes of delicious food but also to soak up the congenial neighbourhood atmosphere.

Pop Soda's Coffeehouse & Gallery on Urbanspoon

“I never see any home cooking. All I get is fancy stuff.”-Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh

Chez Sophie


It was a quiet, snowy evening and in our world, the only plan for later that night was to watch the Jets game, so we had time for an early supper with some good, good friends.  Skip to their world: they have three little ones and Mom home schools the oldest.  They have been sick with a cold.  The youngest has just learned to walk and is into everything.  To them, this is more than a quick, early supper.  This is a couple of precious hours where they are not preparing food, serving, feeding and cleaning up.  They are engaging in adult conversation focused on their plans and desires and not only their children.  In short, they really needed this time, however brief.  So if you can treat a young couple to some time like this or better yet, babysit for them, so that they can have some time alone together-do it!

I am currently reading a lovely work of non-fiction entitled “On Rue Tatin”.  The authour is the writer of the French Farmhouse Cookbook and so it was very appropriate that we find ourselves at Chez Sophie Bistro & Pizzeria.

The small dining room room is simply appointed with a bevy of chandeliers hanging from the ceiling but for extra coziness, little lamps perched on every window-sill.

The white sauced pizza looked very tempting and so we will have to go again very soon to sample it. So too, the fried Camembert as D and I recounted our honeymoon which began in Quebec City, eating fried cheese at a sidewalk cafe.

We were able to make our choices and the meal started with a split pea soup served with a “just-out-of-the-oven” mini baguette.  Soup did not start my meal so my anticipation of good things to come was that much heightened.

And oh, I was not disappointed.  I choose Moule & Frites every chance I get and Chef Sophie’s are up there with the city’s best (7 1/4 and Inferno’s).  The seafood meat was succulent and in no way had suffered by the poaching process which is sometimes the case.  Mussels must be closely supervised to serve them at their peak and these were beautifully done so.  The nectar that they floated in was so sublime that I boldly requested a spoon.

Sophie’s version comes with a beautiful tossed salad and absolutely delicious French fries: piping hot with a sprinkle of salt (and not a ketchup bottle in sight!).

The guys at the table choose an Alsatian stew of beef and pork with carrot, potato and leek. They too did not receive spoons, but were undeterred because each morsel in their bowl had been simmered for adequate time so as to soak up every droplet of the white wine broth.

Lastly, this gorgeous Arctic Char was presented and consumed with delight.

There was no time for dessert so that is another reason why we will have to return.  D and I finished our wine and remembered the days when we were busily raising our own three children. But we also remembered our last evening in Paris when we celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary-the kids were grown, we were a happy couple enjoying life’s shared experiences and we  sat side by side, and dined on Moule & Frites.

Chez Sophie Bistro & Pizzeria on Urbanspoon

Kath’s quote: “If I had magic powers, I should like to wave my golden fork over the confined cookery of Europe and enlarge it to infinity; I would like to . . . offer French nationality to the many hardly known but delicious foreign dishes; …I would like to put the whole of natural history on the spit, in stews, in fricassees, in court-bouillon, in grills,….. ” –Fulbert-Dumonteil (Jean Camille) 1831-1912

Moxie’s Polo Park


There was a time when the only Moxie’s location that we were aware of in Winnipeg was at St. Vital Centre.  The restaurant was a perfect destination for us when the kids were younger because we could bribe them with the promise of going out for lunch if they were good while we got some shopping done. 

Well times have certainly changed.  Recently, Daughter #1 wanted to purchase a Macbook Air but was hoping to put it on my credit card (and then she would transfer the funds to me).  To inspire the transaction, she promised lunch out and we found ourselves at Moxie’s Polo Park.

I chose the special that day – a blackened chicken Club Sandwich.  I would have preferred less bread but the fixings inside were a lovely taste combination.

The sandwich came with a Caesar salad, tossed just the way that I like it-easy on the dressing.

Daughter #1 treated herself with the decadent grilled lobster and brie sandwich.

It too was served with a nutritious salad filled dried cranberries and a crumble of cheese.

The restaurant was filled up with a diverse crowd that afternoon.  There were lots of fellow shoppers, perhaps some of  whom were accepting or taking bribes as well…..

Moxie's Classic Grill on Urbanspoon 

 Kath’s quote: “A woman should never be seen eating or drinking, unless it be lobster, salad and champagne. The only true feminine and becoming viands.”-Lord Byron

Wok Box


Recently, D was out of town for the week on business.  I kind of get a kick out of not having any cooking obligations when he is away.  It is not that d doesn’t do his share of the cooking, because he certainly does but because I have my office at home, it just makes more sense that I would get supper going at the end of the day.  I took advantage of this break by having popcorn by myself one night for dinner and on another occaision, I wanted to treat our youngest to a quick supper out.  I was trying to get her fuelled up before she had to settle in to a long night of studying for tests.

We went through our typical fast food list and then I remembered The Wok Box.  At $10.79 each, why would we ever go anywhere else for a fast food fix?

The location at 170-1580 Kenaston Blvd. has plenty of parking, nice low lighting and big private booths.

I chose the Kung Pao and watched the efficient kitchen staff put it together.  It came with peanuts and a few too many green peppers that were not cut up small enough.  Next time I would request more cilantro to sparkle up the flavour a bit.

Daughter #2 sampled the Pad Thai.  We make our version at home with lots of scrambled egg and that ingredient was missed.  In addition, our family recipe has quite a bit more sweetness, which is the manner that we prefer.

Both dishes were different then we were accustomed to but were very good, none the less.  We were surpized by the variety of the menu including butter chicken, pot-stickers and samosas.

Wok Box 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

Stella’s Sherbrook


We recently had an errand to accomplish at our our son and daughter-in-laws Wolseley home, when it  some was suggested that we grab some breakfast or lunch together.  With less than a two minute walk, we were inside the doors at Stella’s Sherbrook.  You might notice that I did not say that we were sitting at a table because that in fact did not occur for quite a while.

The wait was pleasant enough as there is a real community feel about the place, perhaps because of the neighbourhood itself, perhaps it is promoted by the friendly, laid-back staff.

J ordered the Stella`s special breakfast and was well content.  So too was the female J when she choose the Mexican breakfast.

D was immediately tempted by the special of the day-a hearty chicken stew that came with a tasty biscuit and Stella`s healthy salad.  The three of us stared longingly at his choice and would order that ourselves, the next chance that we get.

When eggplant is on the menu, it always catches my eye.  Even though these eggplant circles were individually prepared rather than in a casserole style, as I prefer, it was delicious none the less.  Their version is likely healthier than the way that I prepare mine.  My recipe where the veggies are tossed in flour, dipped in an egg wash, then covered with breadcrumbs, soaks up the olive oil like a sponge.


The eggplant were served on a bed of spaghetti tossed in a light tomato sauce and crunchy garlic bread.

Our server was very pleasant and helpful.  In fact, she was familiar to our son and his wife as were many staff and diners that afternoon.

Stella's Cafe & Bakery Sherbrook on Urbanspoon

Kath`s quote:  “How can people say they don’t eat eggplant when God loves the color and the French love the name? I don’t understand.”-Jeff Smith

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