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Ottawa's Latest and Greatest on Food & Drink

3 tea houses to warm your soul this winter

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Photo from the Cha Yi website.Photo from the Cha Yi website.

Next to water, it’s the drink that is most consumed from coaster to coaster, all around the world – tea. Black, green, white, yellow, oolong, pu-erh and herbal varieties offer a slew of health benefits and a welcomed change to the regular double-double coffee run. As the winter months quickly begin to steep into our bones, cozy up with an old friend or a good book over a pot of loose leaf at some of the city’s warmest tea houses. 1. World of Tea Specialty: Rare and aged terroir artisan... | Continue reading article

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Foodie Friday: Ottawa’s newest microbrewery goes gaga over craft . . . cocktails?

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Photo from the Lowertown Brewery Facebook page. All other photos by Tobi Cohen.Photo from the Lowertown Brewery Facebook page. All other photos by Tobi Cohen.

So Ottawa’s newest brewpub fancies itself a cocktail connoisseur eh? Well, let me be the judge of that. I was invited to the Lowertown Brewery in the Byward Market last week, not to sample its southern barbecue or craft brews, though I did try both. I was there to try something a little less obvious – its handcrafted cocktails which, on weekends, are supposedly served up with flair. On a Wednesday night, the mixology show consisted of a short-lived burst of flame while heating up an orange peel with a... | Continue reading article

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LOCAL Public Eatery set to be next neighbourhood favourite

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Photo provided by LOCAL Public Eatery.Photo provided by LOCAL Public Eatery.

Walking into LOCAL Public Eatery is a different experience than at other Ottawa restaurants. The difference is barely recognizable, but it’s there. The cool, modern décor is reminiscent of eateries in Toronto or Montreal while the warm, inviting staff make you feel at home. My eyes were drawn to colorful vintage fluorescent lights and the open kitchen at the back. A cozy and casual vibe was palpable and I immediately felt at ease despite the bustling crowd and hurry of servers around me. Upon arrival, the hostess let me know... | Continue reading article

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Foodie Friday: Ottawa, have you tried the arepas yet?

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Arepas. Photo courtesy of Gooney's Sandwich Works.Arepas. Photo courtesy of Gooney's Sandwich Works.

Arepa, a kind of corn bread made from pre-cooked corn flour, is my favourite food. Of course, I’m biased because it’s a staple in my native Colombia. It also features prominently in the cuisine in Venezuela, where the Granati family, who run Gooney’s Sandwich Works out of an office tower on Laurier, have roots. Gooney’s is the only place in town that serves anything like them. Crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside, the versatile arepa (pronounced “ah-ray-pah”) can be eaten at every meal. Prepared flat and coated... | Continue reading article

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Foodie Friday: Brew Brahs interview Cartwright Springs Brewery

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Photo from the Cartwright Springs Facebook page.Photo from the Cartwright Springs Facebook page.

Just shy of an hour west of Ottawa is the small community of Mississippi Mills, home to about 12,000 residents and soon to be home to 1 brand new brewery. Cartwright Springs Brewery, opening in 2015, is named after the fresh water spring the brewery sources locally to brew its beer. The CSBeer team currently consists of André Rieux, Eduardo Guerra and Hien Hoang. Right now, the brewery is running a Kickstarter campaign to raise funds so they can build a tasteful tasting bar. BrewBrahs.com had the chance to chat with the... | Continue reading article

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Foodie Friday: Support local this holiday season at the Christmas Markets

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After the Harvest. Photo by Liz West on Flickr.After the Harvest. Photo by Liz West on Flickr.

Fresh off the wildly successful Support Local initiative in October comes the Christmas Market. Opening its doors this past Sunday, the Christmas Market will be held at the new Landsdowne Park for a total of five days this month. The 116-year-old Aberdeen Pavilion, colloquially known as the Cattle Castle, celebrated the commencement of the new holiday shopping experience with festive music, decorations, and 120 local artisans. Merchandise for sale included, but was certainly not limited to, fresh produce, preserves, home décor items, and even children’s toys. With no admission and... | Continue reading article

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Weekend Roundup: Quoi faire ce weekend? + ticket giveaway

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Monster Truck. Photo courtesy of their website, ilovemonstertruck.com.Monster Truck. Photo courtesy of their website, ilovemonstertruck.com.

This first weekend of the final month of the year has arrived and it seems as though the snow and cold is here to stay! Not to worry, we’ve got plenty going on to cheer up those winter blues this weekend. As always, there is plenty of music happening. Thursday night brings a night of jazz, with the Craig Pedersen Quartet at Raw Sugar. For those of you that love folk, Raw Sugar is the place to be on Friday night. Krista Muir and Friends will be putting on an... | Continue reading article

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Festival steeped in culture and caffeine returns to Ottawa

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Photo from ottawateafestival.com.Photo from ottawateafestival.com.

Tea tipplers unite. The fourth annual Ottawa Tea Festival descends on the Capital this weekend, promising two days steeped in culture and caffeine. The event will take place at the Library and Archives and organizers are expecting a record turnout. “Last year we had over 2,000 guests. This year we expect around 3,000,” says organizer Jessica Lahrkamp. “Anyone who loves tea, artisanal food, exploring different cultures, amazing performances, fantastic music, and education will fit right in.” The festival was founded by Kimiko Uriu, one of the first certified tea specialists... | Continue reading article

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Intersections Vernissage today at the Atomic Rooster!

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All photos by Brant Thompson.All photos by Brant Thompson.

Today marks the vernissage of Intersections, a photography show featuring Brant Thompson, at the Atomic Rooster. A showcase of the best of hundreds of shots and his first photography show, I had the opportunity to sit down and chat with Brant this past weekend about what inspires him as a photographer and what led him to this point. Brant became interested in photography in his late teens and early twenties. He took the photography program at Algonquin College and, for a while, was really into it. Over the years life... | Continue reading article

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Foodie Friday: Super service and modern feel make Giovanni’s an Italian eatery worth visiting

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Photo from Giovanni's Ristorante Facebook page.Photo from Giovanni's Ristorante Facebook page.

“Service, service, service,” is what sets Giovanni’s Ristorante apart, says general manager and tonight’s Maitre D’, Fabio Vitagliano. It’s a motto that would explain the Italian eatery’s longevity on Preston Street – it’s been here for more than 30 years – but it’s only part of the fine dining experience. And make no mistake, dinner at Giovanni’s is an experience. With the exception of pizza, I’m not one to dine out on Italian often. I find many Italian restaurants, especially those in Little Italy, either kitschy or old fashioned. Frankly,... | Continue reading article

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