Eating Our Way Through Victoria… Café Brio

Hello, Dear Reader:

If you’ve read our other ‘Food‘ blogs you’ll know that we both have some background in the hospitality industry. We’ve also travelled extensively (both individually and together) over the years, and when one has gotten used to eating in restaurants day in and day out for months at a time, the novelty wears off very quickly. Having said that, we both enjoy a really good restaurant, and a few weeks back we realized that we had yet to discover Victoria’s ‘signature‘ restaurant. In other places we’ve lived we’ve found that there is usually one place, sometimes a very few, that we come to associate with that particular area. When we lived in Ontario, for example, Ottawa’s signature restaurant was Chef Pierre. In Kingston it was Mino’s. In Toronto there was Penelope’s and The Old Mill. We’ve tried some good and very good restaurants in Victoria (and one we chose not to write about), but so far, nothing really defining. For us a signature restaurant is about more than just the food; it’s about the ‘experience‘. Good food is a given, but there are a few restaurants that, for various reasons really go above and beyond in providing a combination of wonderful tastes, presentation, exemplary service, ambience and an excellent overall evening. Continue Reading →

Being Green – A Hand Up

Hi Folks:

Well, since my absence from this area of our blog last Friday, in a way one could say this is last week’s ‘Being Green‘ post.

The phrase ‘A Hand Up, not a Handout‘ is a common one among those involved with programs around the world that help people improve their life situations, and in its own way it is a common thread running through all of them. There are many, MANY good programs around the world that are working in myriad ways, and while it’s impossible to profile all of them, I thought I’d mention a couple with the intent that these provide impetus for you to start your own search to find one that resonates with you. Many of these groups deal with food in one way or another, and while food may the most basic ‘green’ subject of all, the procurement of food is such a basic necessity that it can overlay other, larger concerns, like environmental destruction, deforestation, wildlife loss, etc. My own knowledge of this first came through a couple of friends who volunteered their time with a group called Plenty Canada. My friends and I have parted ways over the years, but at that time Plenty Canada was involved in a number of different projects around the world – from teaching farmers in Dominica to grow soybeans for consumption and sale rather than sugar for export – to installing wells and catchment basins for clean drinking water and planting fruit trees in Africa. I’m sure their work continues apace. Continue Reading →