Brunch in the ‘Burbs: Branches at Greenland Garden Centre

We rarely find ourselves in Sherwood Park, so there are few opportunities to try some of the restaurants I’ve had my eye on for some time. In early June, Mack, Emily, Grandma Male and I made an occasion to sample the brunch at Branches in Sherwood Park.

Located inside the Greenland Garden Centre, the restaurant, greenhouse, and retail area reminded me of (a much smaller) Enjoy Centre – between having a meal and shopping, one could easily spend a couple of captive hours on the grounds.

I had called ahead to inquire about reservations, but had been told they weren’t accepted. They had advised to arrive before 11am on weekends (although the restaurant opens at 9am, their full brunch menu is served from 11am until 2pm). Though it was quite busy, our arrival at 11am thankfully didn’t mean we had to wait for a table that day.

Branches

Grandma Male and Emily at Branches 

Branches has quite a lovely set up, with expansive windows in the dining room that look out onto small patio and the trees and shrubs for sale outside, in addition to a view of the kitchen. The brunch-specific menu is quite small (we could also have ordered from the regular lunch menu), but Mack and I were content with the Branches breakfast bowl ($15).

There was a modest wait for our food, but our server was responsive in topping up our coffees in the meantime. The bowl itself was enjoyable enough – I would have preferred poached to fried eggs for maximum yolk creaminess, but the potatoes, sausage, and bell peppers underneath were cooked well. The accompanying “green onion cakes” were more akin to fried bread than actual green onion cakes, and seemed out of place on a menu without any other hint of fusion.

Branches

Branches breakfast bowl

Before heading out, we did spend some time exploring the greenhouse, and picked up some flowers and compost. While I’m not sure Branches is worth visiting on its own accord, if you were also in the market for some garden supplies, I’d recommend a trip out to Greenland Garden Centre for a pleasant afternoon.

Branches (located in the Greenland Garden Centre)
23108 Highway 16, Sherwood Park
(780) 467-3443
Monday-Wednesday 9am-6pm, Thursday-Friday 9am-9pm, Saturday 9am-5pm, Sunday 10am-5pm

Food Notes for July 15, 2019

H-Mart Opens to Large Crowds

H-Mart, an American-based Asian grocer specializing in Korean products, opened in Edmonton on July 11, 2019. Located at 570, 3803 Calgary Trail, it took over the space that had been vacant for some time after Whole Foods cancelled their plans for its first store in Edmonton.

South Park Centre is becoming a hub for Asian groceries and food, with the city’s first Jollibee location to open soon, and a T & T Supermarket a few blocks south.

Openings

Closures

  • Salz is now closed; they decided not to renew their lease, but indicate that they are “on the lookout for a bigger, better shop from which to sling bratwurst and pour Alberta craft beer.” (Thanks to Sharman for the heads up!)

Upcoming Events

  • The next Food4Good low-cost fruit and vegetable sale is taking place at The Big Picture Block Party on July 25, 2019 at Butler Memorial Park (15715 Stony Plain Road).
  • Sabor’s annual Seafood Festival runs August 3-30, 2019. They’ll have a number of special ticketed dinners. including a Food Day Canada collaboration kick-off dinner on August 3, 2019 with Julie Van Rosendaal and Emily Richards.
  • Alberta on the Plate is a new culinary festival “celebrating Alberta local food and drink”, and runs August 9-18, 2019. Participating restaurants will be offering multi-course fixed priced menus highlighting local producers.
  • Farm open house and culinary experience details are now up on the Alberta Open Farm Days website. The event runs August 17-18, 2019.
  • The annual Culinaire Treasure Hunt returns to Edmonton on September 7, 2019. Teams of two can register for $75, and individuals for $47.50.

Reviews

Local News

Urban Agriculture and Farming

What I Ate

  • Mack, Emily and I had the privilege of attending a media event at Melt Sandwich Co. last week. Located on the pedway level of the Bell Tower, Melt was opened by the folks behind Cookie Love back in February, and serves up breakfast and lunch. We were able to try nearly all of the sandwiches they offer. My favourite was the burger melt (one of their best-sellers, along with the dill fried chicken and the Cubano), while Mack continues to have a soft spot for their mac and cheese sandwich.

Melt Sandwiches

Burger melt from Melt Sandwich Co.

  • Last week, I had lunch with colleagues at Mama Asha, a Somali restaurant just off 118 Avenue. Their chicken suqaar wrap at $10 is a great value; most of us struggled to finish it. My favourite part was that it was made with sabayad, a delicious flatbread similar to roti.

Mama Asha

Chicken suqaar wrap at Mama Asha

  • A go-to for work lunches, I was back at T & D Noodle House today. My usual is their 2-colour vermicelli bowl with grilled chicken and spring rolls.

T & D Noodle House

My regular at T & D Noodle House

  • Ritual, an app that allows diners to pre-order food at cafes and restaurants, has launched in Edmonton. To celebrate, they are running a $1 Food Fest Downtown, with more than two dozen participating establishments. Mack and I have been eating our way through the deals, but the best one has to be La Mision’s “small” burrito – an incredible steal at just $1. The Food Fest runs until July 19.

La Mision

Picnic at Alex Decoteau Park with our burritos (Emily is not impressed I interrupted her dinner)

    Food Notes for July 8, 2019

    I was away for work and holidays last week, so I took a break from my blog. Those of you who subscribe to Taproot, however, did receive a Food Roundup, written in my absence by my friend Linda! Click here if you’re interested in signing up for the weekly roundup through Taproot. This week’s Food Notes is a two week update.

    Blue Plate Diner Announces New Location

    The beloved 104 Street restaurant has shared the details of their next home. Forced to relocate from Downtown because of the forthcoming Mackenzie Tower development, Blue Plate Diner will be moving to the 124 Street area.

    Relocating to the former Back Home Fish and Chips space at 12323 Stony Plain Road, they hope to be open by August. The 104 Street location will remain open until July 31, 2019.

    Openings

    • On the heels of Kind Ice Cream’s opening in Ritchie, Made by Marcus has joined the fray with an Edmonton location that opened last weekend.
    • The Woodshed, a burger-focused restaurant on 124 Street from Chef Paul Shufelt (of Workshop Eatery) is now open at 10723 124 Street.
    • Dorinku finally has signage on their forthcoming Downtown location, at 10328 Jasper Avenue (the former Alder Room and Alta).
    • Toronto-based Oliver & Bonacini shared more information about their four forthcoming concepts located in the new Ice District JW Marriott, named Kindred Food + Drink, Braven, Alchemy, and Lobby Bar.
    • The owners of Trang Tien (formerly located in The Quarters where The Moth is now) have re-opened a restaurant in Beaumont, at 5009 52 Avenue.
    • A new candy shop called Rocket Fizz is now open at 10544B 82 Avenue.

    Closures

    • Zenari’s has closed their Manulife location as of June 29, 2019. However, fans will be happy to hear they will be re-opening later this year as Dalla Tavola Zenari (translated as “from the Zenari table”) in the Kelly Ramsey building. They have started a Kickstarter campaign and hope to raise $95,000 to help with the transition.

    Upcoming Events

    • The next Swine and Dine event will be held at Say Uncle on July 16, 2019. Tickets for the 5-course menu are $50.
    • Tickets for the Heritage Festival, running August 3-5, 2019 at Hawrelak Park, are now available online.

    Reviews

    Local News

    Urban Agriculture and Farming

    • The Old Strathcona Farmers’ Market announced that they’ve undertaken a vendor verification process to ensure the products sold at the market are actually produced by the vendor selling them. It’s an interesting strategy in light of the increased competition in the market scene this year.

    Beyond Edmonton

    • Those Little Donuts, a Stampede staple for many, is not on the midway this year; it apparently due to a late application to the festival. They’re a K-Days favourite of mine, so I do hope they’re headed to Edmonton later this month!

    What I Ate

    • I had the pleasure of spending some time in Ottawa for a conference, and met up with fellow foodies Lillian and Dan while there. They introduced me to Rabbit Hole, a cozy joint on Sparks Street.

    Rabbit Hole

    Chicken, bacon, and tomato pizza from Rabbit Hole

    • Mack, Emily, and I hopped over to Toronto for a reunion with my sisters over the Canada Day long weekend. Poutine was in order, and this one from a vendor at the Liberty Village Farmers’ Market was one of the best I’ve had in some time – layers of squeaky curds over crispy fries.

    Liberty Village Farmers’ Market

    Poutine

    • Mildred’s Temple Kitchen has been on my list for some time, and we finally made it for b’lunch during this trip. They’re known for their pancakes, and after trying them myself, I now know why – they’re impressively fluffy.

    Mildred’s Temple Kitchen

    Blueberry pancakes from Mildred’s Temple Kitchen

    • A meal at Otto is becoming a bit of a birthday tradition for me – we had a belated birthday celebration on Friday. I can’t pass up the Otto dog and the fries!

    Otto

    Our spread at Otto

      Food Notes for June 24, 2019

      Edmonton’s First Multi-Day Indoor Market is Now Open

      It was opening weekend for Bountiful Farmers’ Market, Edmonton’s first multi-day indoor market. With more than 100 vendors, an entertainment stage, and food hall, they attracted upwards of 15,000 people per day from Friday to Sunday.

      Bountiful Market

      Many of their vendors can be found at other markets across the city, but they do have some more unique vendors, such as Meuwly’s and Ace Coffee Roasters.

      Bountiful Market

      On a related note, Taproot also published their story on the new business of markets in Edmonton, which discusses the shift to multi-day markets and how that may affect some vendors.

      Openings

      • You can now find Farrow on the north side of the river: their third location is now open at 10240 124 Street.
      • Dangerkat Waffles is now open in Old Strathcona, accessible through the alley behind the Cat Cafe (10111 82 Avenue).
      • Bleu Flames, a locally-owned fondue restaurant opened in May in Sherwood Park (870, 3880 Sherwood Drive).
      • Another microbrewery to add to the list: The Growlery Beer Co. is now open at 40 Airport Road.

      Upcoming Events

      • We already spend a lot of time at Alex Decoteau Park, but the Downtown Business Association is giving me one more: they have organized a great event series called Beats & Eats, happening over three Wednesday evenings from June 26-July 10, 2019. Attendees are invited to pre-order a boxed dinner from a nearby restaurant, then pick it up on the event day for a picnic in the park. The first restaurant up is Wishbone.
      • Kitchen by Brad is hosting another perogy pop-up lunch on June 28, 2019. Advance tickets are required at $18 per person.
      • The documentary The Biggest Little Farm, about a small sustainable farm outside of Los Angeles, will be screening at Metro Cinema from July 5-10, 2019.

      Reviews

      Local News

      What I Ate

      • I had to be strategic with my Dine the Ave choice last week, and chose Donair Express at 8523 118 Avenue. I had no idea it had been open for more than 30 years, and that they make their own donair meat to boot. While it may not be the best donair I’ve encountered in Edmonton, it’s a solid option for a quick lunch with one of the most friendly owners I’ve encountered on Alberta Avenue.

      Donair Express

      $10 Dine the Ave special from Donair Express

      Food Notes for June 17, 2019

      West Edmonton Mall Adds More Local Flavour

      In the last year, several locally-owned businesses have opened up locations at West Edmonton Mall, including Splash Poke, Calle Mexico, and Reinette Cafe.

      In July, it will gain an outpost of Gangnam Street Food. Serving up Korean street food options, the concept seems well-suited to a food court environment.

      Openings

      Closures

      Upcoming Events

      • Dine the Ave is on now, running June 17-23, 2019. Showcasing 20 hospitality businesses on 118 Avenue from NAIT to Northlands, special menus are being offered during the week for $10, $15, and $20. I attended a media preview last week, and CBC interviewed some of the participating businesses.

      Reviews

      Local News

      What I Ate

      • Mack, Emily, and I had our “last supper” at Blue Plate Diner last week. Due to the potential development of the Mackenzie Tower, they will be closing its 104 Street restaurant on June 30, 2019, and will relocate to another “central” location. My go-to dish for years has been their shepherd’s pie, so I had to have it again for old time’s sake.

      Blue Plate Diner

      I’m going to miss this patio!

      • Some people avoid hot soups in the warmer weather, but I’m not one of them. King Noodle House’s bun bo Hue is year-round comfort food for me!

      King Noodle House

      Bun Bo Hue from King Noodle

      • Not food related, but as a long-suffering Raptors fan who has shared my love of the team on this blog before, I’d be remiss if I didn’t document somewhere that I’m still in shock that they managed to pull off a championship win. Still, #wethenorth!

      Dine the Ave: Eats on 118 Continues!

      Eats on 118 was an initiative that the Alberta Avenue Business Improvement Area (BIA) launched in 2016, in order to highlight some of the great restaurants located in an often overlooked area. The BIA contracted Wild Heart Collective to organize restaurant walking tours; each tour featured a visit to 4 or 5 different businesses with a meal or an activity served up at each stop. Over the last four years, more than 500 guests have attended the tours that have involved more than 45 businesses. I was fortunate to have been attended several of those tours over the years, and given my office relocated to 118 Avenue two years ago, it was especially fortuitous as a means to get to know my culinary neighbours better.

      This year, the BIA wanted to continue Eats on 118, but in a different format, and Dine the Ave was born. Although they found that the tours were a great way to expose new people to the area, only a few businesses could participate in each round, and they found that it limited participants to restaurants. Through Dine the Ave, 20 hospitality businesses from NAIT to Northlands will be offering special menus priced at either $10, $15, or $20 from June 17-23, 2019. Last week, I was invited to attend a media preview that saw us sample our way through 5 stops (portion sizes were scaled down to ensure we’d be able to maintain our appetite throughout!).

      The first featured restaurant is a favourite of mine: Battista’s Calzones. In my opinion, the calzones here are the best in the city; the dough (a family recipe) has just the right chew and is always baked to perfection, and their filling varieties mean there is something for everyone. They will be celebrating 10 years in business in the fall.

      During Dine the Ave they’re offering three of their most popular calzones (the Spicy Italian, Giovanna, and Pesto Presto) for just $10 each.

      Dine the Ave

      Co-owner Doug Mah of Battista’s Calzones

      Next, we headed half a block down to T & D Vietnamese Noodle House, another restaurant on my regular rotation. Laura Truong has been running the restaurant with her family for five years, and chose the 118 Avenue location specifically so they could grow with the evolving community (she currently sits on the Board of the BIA). For Dine the Ave, T & D will be serving up 2 house-made spring rolls and chicken on rice or noodles for $10.

      Dine the Ave

      Rice plate from T & D Vietnamese Noodle House

      I was looking forward to trying our third restaurant, La Bodeguita de Cuba. Early this year, it replaced the neighbourhood stalwart El Rancho. Although I was sad to see the restaurant go, the spot is the perfect size for a start-up establishment looking to make their mark. This was exactly what owners Yordanis and Jennifer Lamoru are hoping to do, having dreamt of opening a restaurant for years.

      We received a taste of their $20 Dine the Ave multi-course menu, featuring Cuban comfort food like rice and beans. The ropa vieja (shredded beef in an onion, pepper sauce) was the standout on the plate, and for some at our table, it was also their first time encountering plantains.

      Dine the Ave

      Cuban comfort food from La Bodeguita

      The highlight of the stop was a serenade from Yordanis, who is also a musician. Expect live music at La Bodeguita on weekends; it’s an understatement to say the couple are doing it all themselves!

      Dine the Ave

      A performance by Yordanis Lamoru

      I had also never been to Simba’s Den Pub & Bistro. It opened in May 2018, and owner Senait Tamene, recognizing the “up and coming” nature of the neighbourhood, purchased the building and opened the newest pub on the block. Also, Senait, like Laura Truong, is also on the Board of the BIA.

      Although they do offer nachos, chicken wings and burgers, Simba’s Den prides itself on the Ethiopian and Eritrean fare on the menu, which is what we sampled that evening. The heat level was pretty tame in the chicken, beef, and lentils, and I particularly enjoyed the house-made enjera. For $20, Dine on the Ave guests can have their own vegetarian or meat platter with enjera or rice.

      Dine the Ave

      Meat platter sample from Simba’s Den

      Our final stop is a community landmark – The Carrot, which operates under Arts on the Ave as a non-profit, has been open for twelve years. The baristas are volunteers, and the shop showcases and sells art and jewelry from local artisans. They just changed their sandwich menu, which they will be featuring during Dine the Ave as a $15 special, in addition to a dessert combo of carrot cake and a house-made beverage for $10.

      Dine the Ave

      Carrot cake and coffee from The Carrot

      Thanks to the Alberta Avenue BIA and Wild Heart Collective for hosting a fun evening – it was great to discover even more gems on 118 Avenue. Check out the menus for Dine the Ave here!

      Food Notes for June 10, 2019

      New Ice Cream Parlour Adds to Ritchie’s Cachet

      Ritchie, already home to award-winning restaurant Biera, popular butcher Acme Meat Market, and branches of local favourites Transcend and Farrow, gains another food destination this week.

      Kind Ice Cream, a new small batch ice cream shop, is poised to open on June 12, 2019 across the street from Ritchie Market at 9551 76 Avenue. They’re just off the heels of a successful Kickstarter campaign which raised more than $20,000. They’ll be serving up both dairy and vegan scoops and ice cream sandwiches from recipes crafted by Chef Chael MacDonald (he has worked or consulted at District, Little Brick, and Wilfred’s).

      Openings

      • The Art of Cake has opened a second location in Oliver fittingly called The Baker’s Son, run by Jeremy Hess, the son of Gloria Bednarz and Guenter Hess. It is located in the Allin Clinic at 10155 120 Street.
      • Watch for DangerKat Waffles, coming soon with sweet and savoury waffle wraps in Old Strathcona, at 8115 101 Street.
      • New coffee roaster alert: ADD Coffee is now open at 12003 145 Street.
      • Sian City BBQ Bar opened earlier this year and is located at 5728 104 Street.

      Upcoming Events

      • Just a Little Night Market is coming up again June 21 and 22, 2019, with a marketplace, live music, and food and wine.
      • Just in time to commemorate one year after his death, the next Book Club at Audrey’s will focus on Anthony Bourdain’s Kitchen Confidential. It will take place on June 24, 2019.
      • The Common will be hosting another Prairie on the Plate on June 25, 2019. Tickets for the 5-course meal are $40.
      • The next Fruit & Veggie Sale run by Food4Good is scheduled for June 25, 2019.

      Reviews

      Local News

      • The Journal had a great piece about Filistix’s new digs downtown.
      • Certain restaurants have chosen to control their own deliveries (moving away from companies like Skip the Dishes and Uber Eats), so it seems natural that the next frontier are pre-order apps: Remedy will be launching their own skip the line app soon.
      • Edmonton Food Tours is back for another season of tours Downtown and in Old Strathcona.
      • Sustainable Food Edmonton’s second annual Golden Wheelbarrow Awards are now accepting nominations. The awards celebrate businesses that are environmentally-friendly, including favourite “locavore” restaurants.
      • Sharman recapped the recent Swine & Dine at RGE RD.
      • Dream Donair & Pizza on Argyll Road and 99 Street joins a short list of restaurants in Edmonton, including Indian Fusion, that offers a free meal to those who cannot afford it.
      • The newest episode of Seconds, Please! features Siu To, known to be the person who introduced green onion cakes to the masses in Edmonton.
      • This dining guide on an upcoming conference is such a great resource for eating out in Edmonton, I had to share it!
      • Jason Foster (aka the blogger behind On Beer) is back after a hiatus.
      • Congratulations to authors Karen Anderson and Matilde Sanchez-Turri, whose book Food Artisans of Alberta was shortlisted for the 2019 Taste Canada Awards.

      Beyond Edmonton 

      Food Notes for June 3, 2019

      Addition of Youth Wage Prompts Pay Equality Website

      Last week, Premier Kenney announced that a youth wage would come into effect on June 26, 2019, which drops the minimum wage for part-time workers under 18 to $13 an hour. In response, some restaurants are vowing to maintain the $15 minimum wage for their staff in spite of the changes.

      Alberta15.ca is a website that is trying to create a directory of provincial businesses, including restaurants, that will continue to pay their staff a “living wage”. More than a dozen Edmonton and area food businesses are listed, including Northern Chicken, Meuwly’s, Love Pizza, and The Next Act.

      Openings

      • Edmonton’s first “fancy toast” establishment, Toast Culture, is set to open on June 4, 2019.
      • Although the Hotel Macdonald’s summer hot dog and ice cream cart was out last year, the operating hours were inconsistent. They’ve changed it this year to open 7 days a week from 11am-6pm at the top of the funicular.
      • Milk Crate, a sandwich shop and cafe, is now open in the Epcor Tower.
      • I hadn’t come across Hungry Birds before, a family-owned “not so typical fast food restaurant” located at #182, 4211 106 Street. It opened back in November.

      Closures

      • Blue Plate Diner, spurned by the potential development of the Mackenzie Tower, will be closing in its current location on 104 Street on June 30, 2019. They hope to reopen in another location Downtown.
      • The Bottega in Old Strathcona is now closed.
      • It’s probably been closed a while, but I just noticed that Back Home Fish and Chips is also closed.

      Upcoming Events

      • This year’s Filipino Fiesta, featuring entertainment, vendors, and of course, food, will take place June 22-23, 2019 at Borden Park.
      • Save the date: Sturgeon County’s 2019 Culinary Cookout will take place on August 9, 2019. They released a video this week to help promote the event.

      Reviews

      Local News

      • Congratulations to Edmonton Convention Centre Chefs Francis Derrick Flores and David Dubuc-Poirier who won gold at the Worldchef Regional Semi-Finals of the Global chefs Challenge. They will represent the Americas at the Worldchefs Congress and Expo 2020 in St. Petersburg, Russia.
      • Wilfred’s playful decor is featured in this Eat North piece about restaurants using illustrators to help their vision come to life.
      • NAIT’s forthcoming Centre for Culinary Innovation, opening in the fall, is the focus of a piece in Avenue this month.

      Urban Agriculture and Farming

      What I Ate

      • A single La Mision burrito from Rostizado is probably easily shared by two people, but for some reason Mack and I still decided on one each. It was delicious but induced a food coma.

      La Mision

      Chicken burrito from La Mision

      • It may be dangerous to have Tiffin so close to us – they’re super efficient and the food is tasty. I especially enjoyed the mango paneer.

      Tiffin

      Take-out from Tiffin

      • The bagels from District are a beautiful thing. They will eventually be available at June’s Delicatessen, part of Black Box Hospitality’s presence in the Gibbard Block in Highlands. They hope to open (along with Fox Burger) some time in July.

      District

      Cheese and everything bagels from District

      Food Notes for May 27, 2019

      Filipino Food on the Rise in Edmonton

      Just over a year ago, Chef Edgar Gutierrez (of Tres Carnales and Rostizado) opened Kanto 98 St. in Chinatown, making Filipino food trendy in Edmonton in a way it hadn’t been prior to that. Serving up his interpretation of Filipino street food, people took notice, including the prestigious EnRoute Best New Restaurants list who shortlisted Kanto 98 St. in 2018.

      In April, Jollibee finally confirmed that construction was underway for their first Edmonton location. The international fast food chain is a gateway for Filipino cuisine, and when open, will help expose many more to some of their signature dishes.

      Today, Filistix adds to the city’s Filipino culinary scene with the opening of their new restaurant downtown. Filistix began as a food truck, then became a fixture on several Edmonton post-secondary campuses. Their take on Filipino comfort food was so popular with students and faculty at the University of Alberta that after their lease was unexpectedly cancelled by Aramark last year, the outrage eventually landed them a new space in the Students’ Union Building.

      That said, co-owners Ariel Del Rosario and Roel Canafranca wanted to showcase even more of the flavours of home, in a more upscale setting. Cue their restaurant, located at 10621 100 Avenue. While some of the Filistix favourites appear on the menu (their namesake salad, for instance), most of the dishes highlight the grill and the wok. They are also ambitiously serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

      Filistix

      Mack, Emily, and I had dinner during their grand opening tonight. Their grilled meat skewers were fantastic, but the highlight for me was their Filistix caesar. It incorporates Bagoong (fermented shrimp paste) in place of anchovies, and coupled with the char of the grilled romaine, pork chicharron, and lotus root chips, it’s a salad I’ll be returning for.

      Filistix

      It’s also notable that the menu features several Indonesian dishes, a nod to the heritage of some of their kitchen staff. Mack’s favourite dish of the evening was the mee goreng fried noodle.

      Filistix

      It’ll be interesting to see how diners will respond to having more Filipino options in Edmonton.

      Openings

      • It’s been a great week for new restaurants in #yegdt – Bianco, Rosso’s sister restaurant is now open on Rice Howard Way at #120, 10020 101 A Avenue.
      • 104 Street Downtown also had two restaurant openings this week: the first was Tiffin Fresh Kitchen, which, after numerous delays, was finally able to throw open their (garage) doors last Tuesday. This second branch is located at 10404 Jasper Avenue.
      • Say Uncle, from the folks behind Sandwich and Sons and Northern Chicken, opened last week as well. They took over the space formerly occupied by Aarde at 10184 104 Street. Their menu, as described by Chef Cowan, occupies a space between the neighbourhood pub next door (Kelly’s), and the upscale steakhouse on the other side (DOSC).
      • Dagu Rice Noodle, a chain with locations in Ontario, Quebec, and Calgary, will be joining the 104 Street establishments, filling in one of the vacant bays next to Tiffin Fresh Kitchen, at 10408 Jasper Avenue.
      • We’ve seen mobile coffee carts and cafe trucks, but a cafe built out of a seacan is new to Edmonton – coming soon, Yeg Coffee Can.
      • The folks behind the popular ice cream food truck Scoop N Roll have opened a new food truck called Mish Mash Parfait, focusing on parfait and soft serve. Find them at Kingsway Mall.
      • A Lebanese restaurant called Root of Beirut opened this spring at 10208 127 Avenue.

      Upcoming Events

      • To celebrate the Dragon Boat Festival, Formosa Bistro is hosting a workshop on June 2, 2019, with a dumpling lesson, dumpling craft, and information about the history of the Dragon’s Festival. Tickets are $10.
      • Rogue Wave Coffee is hosting The Unconventional Brewer’s Cup on June 8, 2019. 4 knockout rounds will determine a winner; the cost of participating is $15 for 16 competition spots.
      • Wild Heart is organizing a preview food crawl for Dine the Ave, the new iteration of Eats on the Ave that will see restaurants offering special menus priced at $10, $15, and $20 from June 17-23, 2019. Tickets for this preview on June 12, 2019 are $47, and include meals at 3 restaurants.
      • Kevin Kossowan is leading several foraging workshops this summer. The cost is $68 per person.

      Reviews

      Local News

      • Back in February, as a part of the lead-up to the provincial election, Restaurants Canada was pushing for some labour law changes in a campaign called “Restaurant Realities”. The foodservice lobby group had released a video featuring several local restaurant and food business owners vocalizing their desire to roll back holiday pay increases and advocating for a lower wage for youth workers. Delivering on his campaign promise, Premier Jason Kenney announced his proposed labour law changes today.
      • Western Living released the list of finalists for the 2019 Foodies of the Year. Local representatives include: Ryan and Roselina Hotchkiss of Bundok, Adam Smith of Strathcona Spirits, Ben Staley of forthcoming restaurant Yarrow, and Shane Chartrand of SC at River Cree. The top 10 winners will be announced on July 12, 2019.
      • Duchess now offers a line of ice cream, with three flavours to choose from: tonka bean, passion fruit rasperry, and Valrhona chocolate salted caramel.
      • Presale tickets for Taste of Edmonton, which runs this year from July 18-28, 2019 at Capital Plaza are now on sale. Sheets of 40 tickets are $10 off in advance.
      • Sharman shared her experience at the Edmonton Expo’s recent Winery Spotlight Series dinner.
      • Global News covered the special meal prepared by some local chefs, including Chefs Shane Chartrand, Lindsay Porter, and Nate Henry for clients of The Mustard Seed last week.

      Urban Agriculture and Farming

      • The City Market announced last week that in fact, they will be setting up shop on 104 Street this year. As of June 15, 2019 (so long as LRT construction doesn’t get in the way), they will be back on 104 Street on Saturdays. On Sundays, however, they will still set up adjacent to the GWG Building on 103 Avenue and 97 Street.
      • The Edmonton Food Council is recruiting new members. The deadline to apply is June 5, 2019.

      What I Ate

      • We’ll be eating a lot of asparagus over this next month; nothing says spring like fresh asparagus from Edgar Farms (for those interested in seeing how they grow it, they’re hosting their wonderful Asparagus Festival again on June 2 and 9, 2019).

      Edgar Farms

      Edgar Farms asparagus at the City Market

      Food Notes for May 20, 2019

      Padmanadi To Open Second Location

      The popular vegan restaurant Padmanadi is opening a second branch on the south side. To be located on Gateway Boulevard, north of 68 Avenue, the restaurant is intended to meet their customers’ demands, many of whom reside in south Edmonton.

      However, it will be a fraction of the size of their main location, and, as befits the current shift in dining culture, will focus on delivery and take-out business. They hope to open in late July or August.

      Openings

      • Congratulations to Reinette Cafe for opening a second location in West Edmonton Mall (Phase 1).
      • It looks like Farrow will be opening a location on 124 Street, just south of Remedy.
      • A new all-you-can-eat sushi joint called Sushi Toshi will be opening at 13619 St. Albert Trail.
      • Ono Poke will be adding a second location at South Edmonton Common.
      • Tiffin Fresh Kitchen’s Downtown location at 10404 Jasper Avenue may finally be open on May 21, 2019.
      • Milk Crate, Chef Steve Brochu’s new cafe/sandwich venture in the Epcor Tower, will open May 29, 2019.
      • O’Byrne’s Irish Pub on Whyte Avenue re-opens on May 24, 2019 after restorations.

      Upcoming Events

      • Seconds, Please!, a locally-produced web show highlighting ethnic foods, will be premiering their latest episode about green onion cakes at the Green Onion Cake Man on June 1, 2019.
      • Eats on 118 has changed formats to Dine on the Ave, with participating restaurants offering special menus at $10, $15, and $20 price points. The event runs from June 17-23, 2019.

      Reviews

      Local News

      • I am enjoying Liane’s current series featuring walkable, food-centric neighbourhoods. Last week, she wrote about Old Towne Beverly’s charming and delicious gems.
      • Also from Liane – she interviewed blogger and author Karlynn Johnson on her latest cookbook, The Prairie Table, to be released May 21, 2019.
      • Liquor consumption laws at some provincial parks and at festivals have been relaxed as of this long weekend. It’ll be interesting to see how this manifests itself at events this summer.

      What I Ate

      • It’s been some time since I’ve been to Cafe Amore. The daily pasta special is no longer available at dinner, but all of the former daily pastas are on for $10 at lunch. So although it wasn’t Thursday, I was able to order my usual pasta alfredo, delicious as always.

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      Pasta alfredo (with chicken)

      • We took Emily to Love Pizza on Friday, one of our #yegdt staples. We had been wanting to try the “Not Just for Breakfast-Za”, featuring our favorite Irvings Farm Fresh bacon. The feature is available until the end of the month!

      Love Pizza

      The Meatatarian and the Not Just for Breakfast-Za

      • The City Market’s new location is just short walk away from Chinatown – I hope others take advantage of this as we did on Saturday. I foresee more weekend visits to King Noodle House on the horizon because of it!

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      Bun Bo Hue at King Noodle House