Monday, September 29, 2014

FOOD & DRINK: International Food & Drink Soirée

Happening this Saturday October 4th from 5:30 pm to 11:00 pm at the Ottawa Convention Centre is the International Food & Drink Soirée.
 The event will feature dozens of Ethnic Restaurant, Private Caterers and Crafty Chefs. Sample foods from the Indian Subcontinent, South Asia, Latin America, South-East Asia, the Middle East, the Mediterranean, the Caribbean, Africa and Europe. 
Tickets are $10 in advance or $15 at the door  Food and drink samples range between $1 and $7.
More information here:

Monday, July 21, 2014

MOVIES IN THE PARK: Centretown Movies Outdoor Film Festival

Centretown Movies is back for another summer! 
If you are looking for a great way to spend your Friday or Saturday night, how about watching a movie in the park? 
Admission is always pay-what-you-can, so pull up your lawn chair or plop down on your blanket for some movies under the stars! 

Check out their website here:

Thursday, July 10, 2014

CRAFT BEER THURSDAY: Brews with Celebrities

Celebrities like beer too! I rounded up and sampled some of the recent collaborations with Canadian artists - including a session ale with Sam Roberts Band, a gruit with Margaret Atwood and a Milk stout with Tom Green. 

With RBC Ottawa Bluesfest currently in full swing, it was fitting to start off with a collaboration brew from one of this weekend's performing artists: Sam Roberts Band, who always put on a rocking show.

Spearhead's Sam Roberts Band Session Ale is golden amber ale with a great balance of sweet malt and bitterness. This mixed with a zest of citrus and  a light and crisp finish, at 4.5% you can enjoy a few while sitting back, and rocking out to Sam Roberts Band.

Currently available on tap at select bars and pubs

2) Beau's All Natural  MaddAddamites NooBroo

Whether you are an avid reader or not, if you are Canadian you've most likely heard of or read at least one of Margaret Atwood's novels.

Her latest novel MaddAddam was the inspiration behind the Collaboration beer with Beau's All Natural.

This gruit ale, which generally is a beer that replaces hops with herbs, pours a cloudy orange with very minimal head. The aroma is telling of the flavour, very sweet and fruity with a slight presence of tea notes.

At 5.2% it's not overly high in alcohol so you could enjoy 1 or 2 with a great book on your patio. Perhaps MaddAddam?

Available at select bars and pubs

3) Beau's All Natural The Tom Green Beer

One of the most popular celebrity endorsed beers last year was the Tom Green Beer. Actor and comedian Tom Green made an appearance on Late Night with Jim Fallon to announce it's expansion into the USA.

This milk stout pours a deep dark brown with a nice foamy head that clings to the glass long after it's been poured. The aroma mirrors it's coloring promising dark chocolate flavors, which are delivered on the first sip. This with notes of coffee and a silky smooth finish, make for a light and flavorful stout. Coming in at 5% you can also enjoy a few of these while laughing out loud Tom Green's stand-up routines - just don't get beer up your nose...that hurts!

Available in the LCBO or via

Friday, June 20, 2014

Day trippin' to Prince Edward County

This past weekend, I visited Prince Edward County for the very first time. It's just shy of 3 hours from Ottawa and is a very beautiful and unique county. The landscape actually reminded me of my home province, Prince Edward Island, minus the red sand!

Our first stop was Barley Day's Brewery. Our main reason for heading to the county was for a wine party, however we couldn't not stop for a sip of beer. At 11 a.m. sharp, when the doors opened we made an appearance, sampled some brews, checked out their brew set up and loaded the car with some beer purchases before heading to Three Dog Winery's Grand Opening party. 

At the grand opening, we sampled some of their delicious wines and enjoyed the beautiful scenery. Though the weather wasn't great - it was cold and drizzly - we enjoyed the lively music and atmosphere, and appreciated the passion that John and Sacha Squair put into accomplishing what they have in a short time. I'll have to return one Sunday for Sacha's yoga in the vineyard!!

From there we made a pitstop at Prince Edward County's distillery 66 Gilead where we sampled some hand-crafted spirits before heading out to check out the still in tact hops barn and sampled some amazing wine vinegar from the Carriage House Cooperage, in the building adjacent to the distillery.

 We finished off our day with a trip to 2 popular vineyards - both Sandbanks and Hinterland were incredible, offering a large selection for sampling, which was free if you purchased wine. And how could you not with some of the amazing offerings that they have. Many of Sandbanks wine can be purchased via the LCBO but some are only available at the winery. I usually gravitate towards red wines but the Summer wine was delicious, not too dry with beautiful fruit flavours, with passion fruit at the forefront. It was perfect for my grilled salmon the following evening.

Hinterland offers a different experience, with some amazing sparkling wines. One that was suggested to age 20 years. I can't imagine waiting that long to dive into that yummy bottle again. I have enough trouble aging beer - the temptation is overwhelming knowing how great the product is.

Although short, I really enjoyed discovering Prince Edward County and some of the amazing beer and wine offered by the region. I'm told we barely hit the tip of the iceberg and there is much more to discover in the form of other vineyards and some incredible artisan products, especially the cheese.

This means I'll definitely have to make a return trip. No qualms here!!

More information on Prince Edward County:

Friday, June 13, 2014

LISTED: Last minute ideas for Father's day

So far the long term forecast for Father's day is sunny skies! I've put together a list of some last minute ideas to celebrate the day with dear old Dad!

Operation Fathers Day - Diefenbunker
Take a VIP tour of the bunker, check out the military display, an exhibit of rare cold war vehicles, drink some cold beer from Big Rig and Kichesippi and eat some delicious offerings from local businesses. 

 $40/family (max. 2 adults + 3 youth 18 and under)
Free for kids 6 and under

If Dad is a Ferrari fan, take him for a  ride-along in a Ferrari, driven by a Festival volunteer. Two ticket levels are available:

“Tifosi” Ticket: $75/person – You choose the specific model of Ferrari which you would like to ride in (subject to availability)
“Amici” Ticket: $50/person – Take a ride in the next Ferrari available to take passengers

Or just let him admire the collection on display. 

There's also a Father's day luncheon at 11:30 at Villa Marconi. 

Treat Dad to a delightful and delicious Father’s Day at the Canadian Museum of Nature.

Breakfast: 9 AM – 11 AM
Early risers can start their day off right with a hearty breakfast buffet that includes eggs, bacon, pastries, juices, coffee and more.
Brunch: 11 AM – 2 PM
The scrumptious brunch buffet includes roast beef, glazed ham, pasta, vegetables, assorted salads, wild salmon Gravlax, charcuterie, breakfast items, fruit, desserts, and more.

Reservations: 613.232.6976 , or on-site at the Museum reception desk.

On Saturday June 14th AND Sunday June 15th, 2014 all Dad's get in for FREE!

Westfest is in it's 11th year this year and it promises to be another big celebration! With free live entertainment, street performers, and the local vendors displaying their wares - it's a fun day for the whole family. Be sure to enjoy a beverage on some of the patios along Richmond. that will be set up for the festival.

Ontario Craft Beer Week kicks off this week with some great craft beer events around the city. Here are some of the events happening just for father's day!
    1. Father's Day Beer, BBQ, & Brunch - Featuring Railway City Brewing Company - tasty brewed beer & a BBQ at The Masonry
    2. Father's Day Brunch at Mill Street Brew Pub
    3. Fathers Day Beer Brunch with Muskoka at Brother's Beer Bistro - Ticket price includes a "Beermosa" to get you started, a pint of Muskoka, and a special menu created by the fine folks in the Brothers Beer Bistro kitchen
    4. Beau's Father's Day Celebration & OCB Week Launch Party at the Brewery - The brewery will be tapping a keg of this year's edition of Pan-Ontario and Guest chef Bruce Wood will be on the patio with a Beau's beer inspired and infused menu
    5. Beau's & Hintonburg Public House Celebrate Father's Day - Father's Day menu created to perfectly complement Beau's beer pairings
However you decide to spend Father's Day, make it a great one! 

To all the Dad's out there - Happy Father's Day! 

Thursday, June 12, 2014

CRAFT BEER THURSDAY: Barley's Angels Meet-up

After a bit of a winter hiatus, Barley's Angels is back in action. We had a meet up at Arrow and Loon on Bank Street on Monday and based on those who attended, there is no shortage of craft beer loving women in Ottawa!

We were lucky enough to have Marissa Begin, aka the Beer Gypsy and rep for Railway City Brewing Company as our featured guest for the meet up. She did a great job of speaking about Railway City and walked us through 3 of the beer they have to offer.

We started with The Witty Traveler a light and fruity Witbier with hints of banana, clove and orange. Marissa was happy to tell us that this would be making it's way into the LCBO very soon.

We then moved on to Dead Elephant, a golden pale ale with lots of citrus and tropical fruits and a sweet honey finish. I loved the personal touch that Marissa added to the tasting but explaining how the beer got its name. You'll have to ask her to find out!

The last beer we samples was the Let the Gruit Times Roll, Railway City's version of a beer with a mixture of herbs replacing the hops. In this case rosemary and sage came through reminding me of the dressing at a turkey dinner. Definitely not a style I drink often but it would be great on occasion for something different.

Overall it was a successful meet-up! Pints were had, 1/2 priced burgers were eaten and prizes were won! There's a lot more in store for Ottawa's Barley's Angels!

Check out the website for more info:


Thursday, June 5, 2014

CRAFT BEER THURSDAY: Re-branding of a Favorite Beer store in Quebec

Although I live in Ottawa and am co-owner of Ottawa Beer Events, I love to occasionally cross the bridge to "the other side" and peruse some of the great Quebec made brews.

One of my favorite places do this was Bières du Monde in Aylmer. Due to unforseen circumstances, the store was closed, but lucky for us - it's re-opening under a new brand and is bigger and better!

This message was posted on their Facebook Page this morning:

Dear Friends & Clients,

Bières du Monde has changed it's name to LE MARCHE DES BRASSEURS D'ICI which is now under new management.

From today on you can discover us in the food court at Les Galeries de Hull with a variety of over 300 Quebec Craft Beers. We promise to be bigger, better and have the largest most exclusive products in the area. Very soon we will be opening in Galeries Aylmer, Cheneville & on Eddy St. in the old Hull.

This is exciting news as not only will they be returning to their previous locations, they will be opening new ones. A little birdie also told me that they are currently partnered with La Maison Bisson and offer home made artisan sausages that pair well with their beer.

So if you are in the mood for some great craft beer from La Belle Province, I'd encourage you to check them out in the Galeries de Hull!