Where’d you get that slice?

I was treated to yet another day of birthday dinner surprises. The intended restaurant of choice was at Assiniboine Park, but we discovered that the restaurant at the duck pond wasn’t open to the public for dinner service. 

After a bit of driving around, we decided to make our way over to Carbone Coal Fired Pizza located at 1580 Taylor Ave, Winnipeg, Manitoba. This is the second location to be opened here in Winnipeg with the original store located downtown.

 The staff was friendly and greeted us at the door as we entered. The restaurant was clean and well decorated. Our service was prompt and the menu was very easy to make a quick selection. The pizzas are available in either 12″ or 16″ on traditional or glutton free crusts. They have several menu pizzas or you can build your own. 

  
We decided to try the Calabrese Pizza which features Calabrese Salami, Roasted Red Peppers, Kalamata Olives & Spicy Eggplant. The pizza was incredibly delicious and I definitely got to eat more than my half (it was my birthday dinner after all, right?). The flavours provided by the coal oven are incomparable. 

Based on our visit, I am certainly looking forward to trying more of this menu on a future visit. I would give Carbone Coal Fired Pizza a rating of 4 super stars out of 5.

Singing up a Storm

It has been a long time since I have been to karaoke. This used to be our thing when I lived out in Calgary. Every Sunday night I would find myself at the local gay bar to enjoy an evening of singing and great company with friends.

I didn’t realize how much I enjoyed going to spend time hearing friends singing until I was recently invited to join some friends here in Winnipeg at our own local karaoke bar. Lime Lite Karaoke Bar located at 531 St Mary’s Road in Winnipeg features karaoke 7 nights a week.

Now I will declare that I am certainly not a singer, but I sure am enjoying making new friends and hearing them share their talents with the audience as they sing up a storm on stage. Lime Lite features a wide range of different songs for people to choose from.

Perhaps one of these days you’ll be able to catch me up on stage, but I don’t see it happening anytime soon. Until then, I will clap loudly from the sidelines.

Where is your favourite place to sing karaoke?

Eating on Ice

I know that today is February 7th, but I literally just realized that it is already February. Where is time going?

I have been enjoying a relaxing week of catching up on sleep and working long days. I also managed to finish making my second scarf which I gave to my aunt for her birthday this past weekend.

We had the opportunity to enjoy sharing a meal on the middle of the frozen Red River at a pop up restaurant at the Forks in downtown Winnipeg. We braved the freezing cold weather and went for brunch on Sunday morning with her, my parents and my cousin.

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It was the perfect way to celebrate together with family. It was definitely cold outside, but nice and toasty inside. Each weekend they host a brunch on a first come first serve basis. They also have a different menu for you to experience.

On our visit, brunch was being prepared by The Tallest Poppy which is located at 103 Sherbrooke Street in the West Broadway neighbourhood of Winnipeg. They served a fixed menu three course breakfast consisting of Red River cereal with fruit, a Belgian waffle with bacon, and an egg on a bindaetteok with coleslaw.

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It was an amazing experience and I am so glad that I was able to share it with my family. The price of admission was quite reasonable at $25 per person. The meal is always something different so you can keep coming back for a different experience every time.

Have you had the opportunity to get brunch yet on the Red River?

Do You Know Johnny G?

Is it really fair to write a restaurant review blog in the middle of a boil water order for the city of Winnipeg? Probably not, but the doors were unlocked so I walked in, sat down, and now here we are writing a blog.

Today, I want to share with you one of my favourite restaurants from many years ago, but I haven’t been here in quite a while so I decided to pop my head back into Johnny G’s restaurant. Located at 177 McDermot Avenue, in the heart of the exchange district near downtown Winnipeg, Johnny G’s right across from a multilevel parkade and a moments walk from the nearest skywalk entrance.

On my visit, I managed to beat the evening rush to dinner. I was seated immediately and provided with a menu that was printed with small font on a dark background in dim lighting. Talk about starting out dinner with a challenge. I was informed that the kitchen was fully functional with the boil water order in effect, but the bar had no ice and they had no bottled water available. I like that they clarified any possible items that weren’t available before I had the chance to order.

The server quickly took my order as there was only a couple tables. She was very kind and recommended that I try the Johnny’s “courage” chilli burger. I paired that up with a pint of Guinness (of course). She returned shortly with my beer that she had poured with almost an inch of foam that was pouring down the sides of the glass. I would have appreciated it greatly if she had taken the moment to wipe the side of the glass personally.

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The wait time for my food was reasonable. I was provided with all the proper cutlery and condiments before the food hit the table which is always greatly appreciated so that I can start eating my meal while it is still hot. Sadly today, I didn’t even get to enjoy my hot food because the french fries were past warm and already moving over to cold. I feel like they would have been perfect if they were hot as they had been seasoned with just the right amount of salt. Unfortunately, the problem wasn’t solved by the server as she never came back to check on my food until I had finished eating.

The chilli burger was a naked burger served coated with chilli. Overall, I was disappointed with my meal choice. I am a fan of a naked burger if the chilli has enough flavour to carry the burger, but this chilli was definitely too weak for that challenge. The chilli tasted like nothing more than seasoned ground beef in a thick tomato sauce. On a positive note, I can say the burger was served nice and hot.

The restaurant was very clean. This is always a good thing. However, the restaurant environment was slightly disappointing overall. The lighting was slightly too high for eating, but not high enough to read the menu. The music was appropriate for the venue, but not loud enough as I could clearly hear the conversation of the people sitting at the tables on the other side of the restaurant.

Final Verdict
This was definitely not the Johnny G’s experience that I remembered and loved. I was really let down by the below expectation food quality. Based on my visit, I am sadly giving Johnny G’s a rating of 2/5. Clean and friendly can’t compensate for cold, bland food. I won’t say I will not come back because they are open until 4am and who doesn’t like restaurant food after the bar, but if I have the choice in the future Johnny G’s isn’t going to be anywhere near the top of my list.

Mmmmmm…. That’s good pie!

This week I was invited over to one of my best friend’s house for Turkey dinner. For a first time cooking a turkey, it was delicious. It was nicely cooked, well seasoned, and very juicy. Along with that she made scalloped potatoes, stuffing, and carrots. I love a really good home cooked meal.

Unfortunately, we finished dinner and realized that there was no dessert to accompany our dinner. We realized that the only thing that would be well suited to our meal was an apple pie. Luckily I got to be the hero with my Costco membership so we could go buy a giant Apple pie.

For only $9.99, we picked up a 12 inch pie to finish off our amazing meal. I think that it might just be my favourite apple pie based on flavour for the low price.

Have you tried the Kirkland brand Apple pie from Costco?

I finally got the cup!

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I believe that I have gone on more than a few rants about how much I hate Starbucks policy of “personalizing” your cup by asking for your name when you order. However, I am going to give you the short version of my rant so that you understand why this is so exciting to me.

Starbucks once said that they wanted to be the third place. The first place being your home, the second place your work, and they wanted to be the third place. My issue is that no one asks me my name at my home, no one asks me my name at work, so I don’t want to be asked my name in my third place.

So when I order a drink, especially in my work uniform, I don’t like having to explain who I am. When the barista asks for my name for the cup, I politely say “no thanks” and that generally is the end of the conversation.

However, yesterday I finally got a cup that said exactly the name I provided. I got my “No Thanks” cup. I think that it was the highlight of my week because I have always secretly wanted someone to write it without being asked.

What name do you provide when you’re asked for your name to write on the cup?

Let’s do the Twist

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I am very much enjoying the break that Mother Nature is giving us from the frigid winter weather. Aside from the sloppy mess that it has made of the roads and my pant legs, it is wonderful to be able to go outside for more than 10 seconds without freezing. That being said, time to get on with today’s blog.

I have been eating fast food far too often lately. It has gotten so out of hand that I am actually bored of the menu at McDonald’s. For those of you who aren’t aware, I could eat McDonald’s for every meal everyday…. Oh wait I have been doing that for like the last 10 years. Surprisingly enough, I’m not a million pounds and I haven’t died…yet.

Yesterday, I decided to step out of my usual routine and try something a little healthier. I went to the Twist Cafe located downtown at 392 Graham Ave here in Winnipeg. It was the first time since moving back to the city that I was took time to enjoy their deliciously fresh prepared menu. I decided to order the Pesto Chicken Wrap with a bowl of the Lobster Bisque soup. It was the perfect lunch to add the beautifully warm day that we had.

The Twist Cafe is amazing for enjoying a healthy lunch with a friend, a business meeting over some fresh pastry, or just stopping in for a coffee and a good book. During the summer, they have a small patio to sit outside and enjoy our downtown.

Have you been to the Twist Cafe? Did you enjoy it as much as I always do? Leave a comment below to share your experience. Happy Friday!