Browsing: Restaurant Features

Colossal Cafe-Minneapolis by Guest Blogger Daughter#3


Daughter #3 is not “actually” my daughter-  I just love her like my own.  She is married to our son.

“For as long as I can remember my mom has always taught me, when it comes to food, real is best.  Sugar, butter and whip cream are not the enemies.  Just be smart about how much you eat and don’t forget to exercise!  I still follow the same philosophy today at home and eating out. When J and I go out for a meal, we want it to taste good- period.  If that means riding our bikes to and from the restaurant to burn off the extra calories, we’re happy to oblige.  This is probably the reason that the deep-fried, calorie-rich food featured on the show “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives” never seems to scare us off.

On this occasion we were heading to Minneapolis for a family wedding, and the weekend happened to land on my birthday.  A friend recommended “The Colossal Cafe” (featured on “Triple D”) to us after hearing about our upcoming trip and we quickly went to YouTube to look it up.  Our mouths watered as we watched the owner prepare the Marinated Pork sandwich (Fresh pork loin, marinated with rosemary, garlic, lemon, white wine, olive oil, Dijon mustard, oregano & pepper, with greens and rosemary aioli, served on a fresh baguette) and the Meatloaf sandwich (homemade Meatloaf, with greens and cranberry chutney on a homemade roll), but what really caught my attention were the Apple, Walnuts, brown sugar, honey & Brie flappers(yeast-based pancakes).  

J and I went to the cafe for breakfast and ordered the latter, as well as the Egg, Prosciutto, Sun-dried Tomatoes & Swiss sandwich. 

They both were just as delicious as anticipated.  Together with 2 coffees, we spent less than $20 and had a fabulous time on the patio just outside the tiny restaurant.  We will definitely continue the tradition of looking up a “Triple D” destination next time we head back to the States.”

Colossal Cafe on Urbanspoon

Kath’s quote :“Square meals, not adventurous ones, are what you should seek.”-Bryan Miller

Dessert Sinsations


The three sisters love to dine together and use the excuse of our birthdays, fairly well placed throughout the year, to get together.  Well as you know, mine was recently and I carefully choose the restaurant.  A central location is key because our Mom and Sister #2 are in EK and Sister #3 in Corydon Village.  We also have an eye of accessibility for my Mom and Dessert Sinsations Cafe filled the bill on all accounts.  To find that it was Mexican Fiesta month, was the icing on the proverbial cake.

Chef Barbara’s partner Rich, is known to us from our former restaurant days when we all worked together.  We were very impressed with their new twists on some of our old favourites.

I kicked the night off with a mango Margarita and then followed with a savoury Mexican soup. 

Sister #3 had a Taco Salad that she seemed quite pleased with.

Sister #2 tucked in to the chicken fingers which had a layer of curry under the crunchy breading. 

Our Mom, the gravy-lover, opted for the poutine made with a mixture of white and sweet potatoes. This inspired us to try the lobster and dill hollandaise poutine for the table.

When asked what I would like to sample from the dessert display, my answer was a fork.  I was too satiated for a full dessert but was happy to share one four ways.  It was a tough decision (as one might expect at a restaurant so named).  In the end, the red velvet chocolate cake was the winner. 

Dessert Sinsations Cafe on Urbanspoon

Kath’s quote: “Sir, Respect Your Dinner: idolize it, enjoy it properly. You will be many hours in the week, many weeks in the year, and many years in your life happier if you do.”-William Makepeace Thackeray

Joe Senser’s Sports Theater-Minneapolis


D is originally from the Minneapolis area and we love to head down for a variety of reasons, typically Viking match ups.  But this particular trip was  for a very special celebration-the marriage of a beautiful niece.  We had a bit of a window before we all had to get gussied up for the ceremony and #1 son had found Joe Senser’s Sports Theater the night before.  I am often skeptical when a place’s main claim to fame is that it is owned by a football player.  But Joe was a Viking and since I acquired purple blood through marriage I was willing to give it a try.

I didn’t get much conversation out of my family of diners because their eyes were fixed on various screens -the start of the French open, baseball updates and one devoted to video bloopers.

But when the food came it was just what the doctor ordered and so I was content.

D enjoyed this Cobb Salad which took him forever to eat.

The Frenchman: this combo special of a burger, waffle fries AND boneless chicken wings.

Daughter #2 went with the chicken wrap that was so huge, Daughter #1 ate the second half on the car ride home the next day.

For me?  They had me at artichokes….artichoke and chicken flat-bread.

Joe Senser's Sports Grill on Urbanspoon

Kath’s quote:“The primary requisite for writing well about food is a good appetite.”-A. J. Liebling

Purple blood in my veins but a true blue heart….

Mask Restaurant-Gimli


On our way to our cottage, when we drive over the last hill with our first glance of the lake, we can often see the lights of Gimli on the opposite shore.  The distance is about twenty miles as the crow flies and yet we often do not get over to the east shore of Lake Winnipeg.  But on this weekend, we were invited to a family wedding and decided to stay the night to enjoy some time meandering the shops and galleries of this Icelandic community.

We asked for breakfast recommendations and the Mask Restaurant was the unanimous choice.  The cafe has two entrances-one for breakfast and lunch and the other for fine dining.   The casual side is painted a beautiful “brillante giallo” -a vibrant yellow reminiscent of cafes that we visited on the west coast of Italy.

Sisters #2 and 3 were immediately drawn to order the Eggs Benedict- a family favourite.  I got to taste the homemade hollandaise sauce on the dish that I just had to try.


The “Fisherman’s” breakfast includes a pan-fried piece of pickerel with a drizzle of the lemony/buttery sauce.  Fish for breakfast?  Well, never before, but it was amazingly delicious!  The dish also included two rashes of crispy bacon, a perfectly cooked over-easy egg, lacy hash brown potatoes and marble rye toast.  

Our server was always around to refill the fabulous coffee or a stronger European blend if you so choose.  If breakfast is this good, what on earth would dinner be like?

Alas, it will be a very long time before I get to find out as the regular treks to “our” side of the lake are about to begin.

Mask on Urbanspoon

Kath’s quote:“Love, like a chicken salad or restaurant hash, must be taken with blind faith or it loses its flavor.”-Helen Rowland

Love to Lunch


There are many benefits to working out of a home office.  My day doesn’t begin with a commute but a wander around the house to tidy up and when it is fair enough, a lap around the yard to see what has poked its head out of the earth overnight.  I am rarely awake to see my husband off and Daughter #2 sleeps until the very last moment before she leaves for University.  I do admit that I spend too much time on Facebook and Twitter to satisfy my interaction urges but I still miss being with other people during my work day.  And so I lunch……

All the places that I’ve lunched lately are familiar places, sometimes with new acquaintances, other times with life-long friends. 

First stop: my first patio lunch with one of the beautiful Sarahs that I have met on Twitter.

I always order this dish because it features both eggplant and artichokes! Angel Hair Pasta tossed with Grilled Vegetables, Roasted Red Peppers, Concasse Tomatoes, Kalamata Olives, Feta Cheese, Pickled Eggplant, Wilted Greens and Artichoke Hearts.

Second stop: The Southside Keg with my long-time friend Gord (he always treats).  This is their new Wedge salad and he likes his with lots of pepper.

I had the Prime Rib Dip-oh my.

Next stop was with one of my very youngest friends-our new Goddaughter (with her Mom and family) to the Falafel Place for some Israeli fixings.  Do you think that she can finish her plate?

The Falafel  Place is one of our favourite neighbourhood places-huge portions of freshly prepared, nutritious food.  I had the Tabouli salad but didn’t include the photo because it looks like a plate of grass-so GOOD!

Last Stop: the Spicy Noodle House on Osborne.  We love the peanut soup with a side of fried pork chop.  I had the deluxe Curried Vermicelli.

What was particularily fun about this lunch was that I got to meet this international student from Brazil who is homestaying with my friend Laura’s family.  This was her first taste of peanut soup.  But I do not think her last.

Kath’s quote:  “A man may be a pessimistic determinist before lunch and an optimistic believer in the will’s freedom after it.”-Aldous Huxley

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