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All In Hand

Mmmmmmmm!

Miss Vicky Wed Sep 6, 2006

After such a lead-up, how could we resist? We've been walking by the place every morning, waiting for opening night.... so this evening the Webgeek and I trotted up to the Wellington Gastropub to check it out.

The place looks fantastic. Much more open and bright than the previous pub. When you open the door, you're greeted by a wooden stairway with risers made from tin roof tiles - the same tin roof they've put up on the ceiling (hence the brightness). The place is all exposed brick, glass and wood. It's simple, comfortable and not at all ostentatious. They have opened up the kitchen so one side of the restaurant has a good view of the activity inside. There are a few booths and a comfy leather couch. there are a few seats at the bar (also comfy).

The place wasn't packed - but pretty full for an opening that wasn't really advertised. We started off with drinks and an appetizer. Since the fellows from Beau's were there for the opening (it was great to meet you guys, by the way), the Webgeek ordered their Lug Tread Lagered Ale (I must admit I have had a sip and am quite excited about it - I've been looking for a replacement for my favourite Creemore since they were taken over by Molson/Coors, and it just might do the trick. When I'm ready to drink beer again, that is). Unfortunately they neglected to stock Upper Canada Point Nine, so it was soda water for me. We had pan-seared scallops served with lobster mushrooms, arugula, a parmesan biscuit and a white wine sauce (if I recall correctly). It was very tasty - the biscuit was the consistency of shortbread and it tasted wonderful with the juicy scallop and the mushrooms. We're big fans of the lobster mushroom, which grows wild in Quebec. Unfortunately our usual supplier (Bryson Farms' stand at the Parkdale Market) hasn't had them this year, so finding them was a pleasant surprise. Here's the Webgeek enjoying his mushrooms.... (sorry about the angle)

For dinner I had pan-seared tilapia with haricots verts and a bacon cornbread pudding. The Webgeek had striploin. I'll let him describe his dinner; mine was great. The fish was light and seared to a nice crispness on one side. The beans were nice and crispy. But the pudding....that really made the dish. It was incredibly flavourful and really complemented the mild-tasting fish. Very satisfying. Here it is:

We left a tiny bit of room for dessert (after all, we had to really give the place a shot), so we shared chocolate cake with a whiskey caramel sauce. So. Yummy.

Conclusions? Great food - not the kind of place you can eat at all the time (unless your wallet and waistline can afford it), but well worth it for a treat. And if you just want to have a good beer in a nice atmosphere, the beer list looked great and the space is nice and relaxed. We'll be back, for sure.
195 Comments

Wellington Gastropub open Wednesday!

Miss Vicky Tue Sep 5, 2006

The fine folks at the soon-to-be Wellington Gastropub let me know they are having their grand opening tomorrow - that's Wednesday, September 6. They promise a "daily changing menu, craft beer, eclectic and stellar wine list".

I only hope they've stocked a few bottles of Upper Canada Point Nine.... Will report back once we've checked it out!
154 Comments

Arrr! Urban Treasure Hunt!

Miss Vicky Mon Sep 4, 2006

Creative Neighbourhoods is calling upon local residents to help uncover hidden treasure in our neighbourhoods! Not pieces of eight - we're talking the kind of treasures that make this area special - greenspace, parks, arts and heritage - and gems that could be treasure with a bit of imagination, polish and effort. Is there a secret garden on your street? A hidden pathway? An architectural landmark or something that really makes you smile? An empty lot or blank wall just waiting to be brought to life?

You can pick up an Urban Treasure Map at several shops and galleries along the Wellington Street West mainstreet (we noticed them in Bridgehead), or you can download it here. Put your treasures on the map and hand it in at the Creative Neighbourhoods table this coming Saturday at the Harvest Festival in the Parkdale Market. We'll be there from 10am to 3pm. And there will be prizes!

The treasure hunt is part of Creative Neighbourhoods' efforts to engage people who live around the Wellington Street West mainstreet district in a discussion about the future of the area. The city is launching a Neighbourhood Planning Initiative here; it's a pilot project that brings all key city departments together with the community to build a vision for the area. So we're talking about land use, zoning, traffic and other planning-related issues, but also will consider the physical, cultural, economic and social development goals for the community. It's also connected with the reconstruction of Wellington Street West and the community design plan for the mainstreet, which were just getting started but were put on hold until the NPI got rolling. It's got a lot of potential, but only if we make it work. And making it fun is part of making it work. So if you live in Hintonburg, West Wellington, Laroche Park/Mecanicsville, Civic Hospital , Champlain Park or any of the neighbourhoods that surround the mainstreet, join the hunt, and watch this space for more news about the Neighbourhood Planning Initiative!
163 Comments

Labour Day!

Miss Vicky Mon Sep 4, 2006

Hm, this holiday has taken on a whole new meaning for me now that we're waiting for Pumpkin's arrival. Nevertheless, my belly and I will be marching in today's Labour Day parade, which leaves City Hall at noon and winds its way through downtown to McNabb Park (Gladstone and Bronson). At McNabb there'll be a BBQ, music and tons of activities for kids. So feel free to come on down and join us!
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Facelift

Miss Vicky Fri Sep 1, 2006

The other night, as the Webgeek and I headed home from the Art against War opening at the Cube, we noticed that scaffolding had been erected outside the former Elmdale Theatre and current Cornerstone Apostolic House of Refuge church. Looks like they are restoring the outside of the building - fixing the stucco at least. I stopped by the site today and asked one of the workers whether they were going to do the tiling as well and he nodded, so I can only assume that means yes. This is a favourite building for many in the 'hood -for historical,sentimental and architectural reasons. I really hope they do it up right.
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