May 10th, 2013
Our never-ending quest for the best benny in town led us straight to Blondes Diner.
Top Chef Canada hopeful, Chris Shaften opened the not-so greasy spoon in March with a menu of ‘fancy diner goodness,' like the Mushroom Eggs Benny with kale and buttermilk dressing salad. Stopping by later in the day? Order up The One and Only Gluten-free Mac & Cheese topped with local Gouda, Edam and cheddar.
It's classic Canadian done right. —Kait Kucy
Blondes Diner, 2005b 4th St. SW, Calgary, 403-474-3867, www.blondesdiner.com
May 3rd, 2013
Just East of the Stampede grounds, Crossroads Market has revitalized with over 25 fresh and delicious local vendors.
Healthy Funky Foods caught our eye with their incredible menu of 100 per cent raw vegan and gluten-free meals, snacks and recipes. We sampled their version of a Nanaimo Bar and left wanting more. They also have great options for a dinner party like the Pesto Stuffed Mushrooms ($16/dozen) which taste deceivingly un-vegan. Yum.
More meat-free goodness can be found at Happy Kitchen Express courtesy of the Queen of Happy Cuisine herself, Saronn Pov who is serving up the most amazing salad rolls you might ever have. Jampacked with 18 veggies, these ultra healthy rolls are dipped in a flavourful citrus sauce for a little extra kick.
Our idea of summer involves a lot of lemonade. Luckily, Pearson’s Berry Farm carries all of our favourite flavours in concentrate just ready to be topped up with water and ice. You can’t go wrong with the Black Currant lemonade – serve with gin and you’ll be in heaven! —Kait Kucy
Crossroads Market, 1235 26th Ave SE, 403-291-5208
March 1st, 2013
The taste of freshly baked breads, in-house cured meats and market-fresh veggies is enough to send you into a tailspin over Market Cuisine's seasonal menus.
The philosophy behind the newly opened MARKET seems to revolve around the foodie do-it-yourself movement. Besides making their own cheese and butchering their own meat, this wonder team also grows their own vegetables. The in-house Urban Cultivator changes everything about the way the MARKET chefs provide fresh, organic and heirloom micro greens and herbs in their dishes. We can't get enough of the mushroom gnocchi ($25) dished up with eggs, goat cheese and bitter greens. Savoury and delicious - and you know exactly where it came from. Bon appetit! —Kait Kucy
Market Cuisine, 718 17th Ave SW, Calgary, 403-474-4414, www.marketcalgary.ca
November 30th, 2012
This weekend, we opened our team's purses, closets and cupboards and had them reveal the everyday items they love. Catch up on the entire series here, here and here.
Being pregnant and chasing an 18-month-old doesn’t leave me with much time to get dressed, let alone choose accessories. My Alden Rae is my “arm party” staple. I wear two, linked, and wrapped around my wrist eight times. $49 each, at Shut Up I Love This.
Children Inspire makes the cutest wall hangings, which are available in a multitude of languages. We just bought my son the Swedish alphabet poster ($30) and French farm animal wall cards ($22.) www.childreninspiredesign.com
We love and use the entire Weleda baby range, and their Calendula Weather Protection Cream is amazing for kid’s face and lips in the cold weather, especially when the skin around their nose gets all dry from being wiped all the time. I’ll be stealing some for cold winter walks and ski season. $15.99 at select markets.
My drink of choice is San Pellegrino’s Sparkling Fruit Beverages, basically adult fizzy pops. I hoard them in my storage room, and when guests are lucky, I’ll serve them. The Limonata is my favourite. San Pellegrino Sparkling Fruit Beverages available at most grocery stores.
How can I not use this opportunity to self-promote, and tell people about my favourite nightwear? This holiday season my husband, family, and I will all be sleeping well in The Sleep Shirt, my nightwear project. Simple, comfortable, and roomy, it’s the best way to sleep. $195-$210, www.thesleepshirt.com
October 9th, 2012
Aftelier Chef’s Essence are a heavenly and spicy addition to home-cooked meals.
These naturally distilled essences are used to flavour even the simplest dish (think chicken and brown rice) with just one drop of oil. Transform your bland stirfry into something exotic and delicious Asian Lemon and Fresh Ginger.
Not unlike those cookie-flavoured candles, these fresh and fragrant oils instantly make your kitchen smell of someone who knows what they are doing. —Kait Kucy
From $26 at Williams-Sonoma, Chinook Centre, 6455 Macleod Trail SW, #123A, Calgary, www.williams-sonoma.ca
October 5th, 2012
Can a person exist off strictly grilled cheese sandwiches? I have a feeling that if it’s The Fine Diner’s aged cheddar and prosciutto sammy, you’ll be living a very fine life indeed.
Brunchers are rejoicing over the addition of this teensy, hip little joint tucked away on 9th Avenue SE. If grilled cheese and all-day breakfast ain’t your thing, their menu is chock full of great alternatives to standard diner fare. The delightful and refreshing Grilled Citrus Salad is jam-packed with fruits like pineapple and grapefruit and can be topped with a grilled chicken breast or seared tuna for a perfectly healthy bite. —Kait Kucy
The Fine Diner, #4, 1420 9 Ave. SE, Calgary, 403-234-8885, www.finedinercalgary.com
September 21st, 2012
Bringing together over 20 local producers and farmers, REAP (Respect for the Earth and All People) Business Association is presenting their third annual autumn harvest feast. Here are the top five reasons that we wil be at Food For Thought:
1. Discover and taste the difference between foods that are grown in sustainable and local methods.
2. The culture! What could be better than enjoying live music and great conversation with the cream of the crop of Calgary's foodie scene?
3. Village Ice Cream will be there. Enough said.
4. Hitting up the beer gardens for some brews from Village Brewery and local wine from Birds & Bees Organic Winery and Blue Mountain Vineyard & Cellars. Cheers!
5. Besides an overwhelming sense of pride in our local farmers and producers, we get to celebrate by noshing on this season’s delicious haul of edibles.
Before you know it, you’ll be hooked on the Farmers Market circuit, too. —Kait Kucy
Tickets are $25 in advance or $30 at the door, www.reapcalgary.com/F4T
September 4th, 2012
Uptown dwellers won’t have to trek to big-box-land for grocery deals anymore as the Old School Emporium has opened just off 17th Avenue SW.
Stocked to the brim with delicious local produce, cheese and meats, the Emporium's mandate is to make grocery shopping for artisan products enjoyable and accessible. Beyond the basics, they also carry a big selection of gluten-free and dairy-free options and some of the best locally roasted coffee beans from Fratello. The shop, dotted with rustic wooden crates and antique furniture pieces, truly feels like you've stepped back in to a simpler time. —Kait Kucy
Old School Emporium, 115-880 16 Ave SW., Calgary, 403-453-2434, www.oldschoolemporium.com
August 31st, 2012
Poppy hates celery sticks and Johnny doesn’t eat raisins on Thursdays, but Sophie needs her fruit separated from her granola. And we thought we left math problems behind in fourth grade.
But even the pickiest eater needs a cafeteria-chic lunch kit. Stock-up on waste-free, natural lunch accessories: sweet reusable sandwich bags ($10), stainless steel food containers, which allow for multiple snacks in one place ($23) and the glorious spork, which does double duty for soups and pasta ($11.50/four).
No plastic wrap, foil or pesky Tupperware to deal with – just simple, eco-friendly, non-toxic lunch buddies.
Happy back-to-school, Mom. —Maria Tallarico
Waste-Free Lunch at Lavish & Lime, www.lavishandlime.com
August 24th, 2012
A shop that only sells oil and vinegar? A foodie’s dream, we think
You’ll be stopping at the bakery for some fresh baguettes after your shop at Blue Door Oil & Vinegar Tasting Room. A concept unique to Calgary, you can taste everything Blue Door has to offer. The room is lined with shiny canteens holding some of the world’s finest olive oils and once you have picked out your choices, the friendly staff bottles it for you – ensuring absolute freshness and quality.
Get all experimental and start mixing your favourite olive oils with delicious vinegars infused with flavours like cinnamon pear or espresso.
Before you know it, you’ll be an oil mixologist yourself. —Kait Kucy
Blue Door Oil & Vinegar, 8561 8A Ave. SW., Unit 3126, Calgary, 403-978-4659, www.bluedoorcalgary.com