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Category "Food"

11Oct

Town Talk: A Night To Dream gala benefits expanding Ronald McDonald House

by admin

https://vancouversun.com/


Seen with singer-lawyer-artist-wife Terri-Lynn Williams-Davidson, artist-carver and Order of Canada member Robert Davidson is the subject of director Charles Wilkinson’s feature-length documentary, Haida Modern.


Malcolm Parry / PNG

SWEET DREAMING: Ronald McDonald House’s recent A Night to Dream gala was a recurring one for Lindsey Turner, who chaired it for the fourth consecutive time. The 17th annual event reportedly grossed $680,000 to help accommodate the 2,000-a-year families who occupy the 73-suite facility for an average 13-day stay. CEO Richard Pass and new board chair Patrick McGuinty may soon announce that up to 52 suites will be added to five-year-old Ronald McDonald House on the B.C. Children’s Hospital campus. Four-bedroom satellites are also expected beside Royal Columbian Hospital and Royal Inland Hospital in Kamloops. They’ll duplicate one at Surrey Memorial Hospital.


Ronald McDonald House CEO Richard Pass and four-time Night of Dreams gala chair Lindsey Turner saw that event reportedly grossed $680,000.

Malcolm Parry /

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MODEL CITIZEN: Masset-raised artist Robert Davidson is the subject of Charles Wilkinson’s documentary, Haida Modern, that premiered during the recent Vancouver International Film Festival. Called “a protégé and friend” by celebrated late carver Bill Reid, Davidson also perceives the Haida tradition not as inviolable rules but as the basis for evolving, living art. His own wide-ranging artworks include gold coins that the Canadian Mint released to accompany his 1997 elevation to the Order of Canada. $50,000 in ordinary currency came his way in 2010 with the Audain Prize for Lifetime Achievement. “I’ve been thinking about a new car,” the ever-modest Davidson said before cheerfully admitting that he’d forwarded the entire amount to fund post-secondary bursaries for Haida Gwaii students.


Former B.C. Lions coach-GM Wally Buono’s wife Sandy and their four children attended his induction into the Italian Cultural Centre’s Hall of Fame.

Malcolm Parry /

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FELICE ANNIVERSARIO: Italian Cultural Centre president Michael Cuccione welcomed community members to a recent 42nd anniversary fundraising gala. Such events have been staged annually since 13 Italian associations founded the Slocan-at-Grandview “Il Centro” on a 3.25-hectare former city dump site. This year, Cuccione inducted former B.C. Lions football team head coach and general manager Wally Buono into the centre’s Hall of Fame. Happily, his old team defeated the Toronto Argonauts 55-8 the following day. Buono likely approved the teamwork when catering director Fabio Rasotto’s kitchen squad served the centre’s fourth full-capacity banquet that week, then repeated it the following night when the Confratellanza Italo-Canadese Society honoured longtime community benefactor John DeLucchi.


Susan Mendelson celebrated her Lazy Gourmet catering firm’s 40th anniversary made possible by her policy of hiring “people better than me.”

Malcolm Parry /

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BON APPÉTIT: Lazy Gourmet owner Susan Mendelson celebrated her catering firm’s 40th anniversary at the Roundhouse Community Centre recently. She likely didn’t foresee that when a UBC arts-and-social-work degree scored her a $350-a-month job at the Vancouver East Cultural Centre, now the Cultch. To meet her rent, she made carrot cake, cheesecake and Nanaimo bars for sale during intervals. She and friend Deborah Roitberg then founded Lazy Gourmet, but Mendelson’s brush with dramatics continued. That was when “two beat-up cars jammed in (a departing customer) and all these scruffy-looking people were waving guns.” Suspecting that it wasn’t part of an earlier movie shoot, Mendelson asked if she should call the cops. “We are the cops,” one fracas member replied. Her business maxim: “I always hired people who were better than me.” That doubtless pleased seven-year general manager Kevin Mazzone at the anniversary beano.


Actor-moviemaker Mark Oliver, who recently screened his 2018 short, Elvis Strung Out, likely benefitted from previous generations of showbiz pros.

Malcolm Parry /

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Mark Oliver’s parents, Jeanne and H.A.D (Bert), show the latter with Second World War medals and French, German and Liberian Orders of Merit.

Malcolm Parry /

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TREES AND APPLE: Actor-moviemaker Mark Oliver, who recently screened his 2018 short Elvis Strung Out, may appreciate late singer Judy Garland’s lyrics: “I was born in a trunk in the Princess Theater in Pocatello, Idaho.” Oliver has a trunkful of theatrical antecedents himself. Grandfather David Oliver owned theatres and produced films in 1910s and 1920s Germany. Grandmother Edith was a screen actress. A great grandmother danced with the Kirov ballet. Oliver’s late Berlin-born father, H.A.D. (Bert) Oliver, sidestepped the stage to study with a London firm of solicitors founded in 1560. “But inside every solicitor there’s a barrister struggling to get out,” he said after moving to Vancouver and pleading criminal law cases. But the theatrical gene survived. One of Bert’s many acquittals involved him holding up a pre-punctured cup of water that dripped steadily for 30 seconds. Then, facing the judge (he later became one himself), he said: “This decidedly reminds me of the case for the Crown.”


Rupa and Rana Vig staged a 100 Year Journey gala based on a same-name book he published following his and brother Minto’s Mehfil magazine.

Malcolm Parry /

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CENTENARIANS: Rana and Rupa Vig staged another 100 Year Journey gala recently. The annual event began in 2014 along with a same-name book marking the centennial of Canadian officials turning back South Asians aboard the ship Komagata Maru. The book, which contains illustrated accounts of 103 successful immigrants and their families, was developed from Mehfil, a glossy magazine that Rana and brother Minto founded in 1993. Four years later, then-premier Glen Clark called Rana “a politician in the making.” Evading that dubious assessment, he achieved something comparable in 1994 by becoming a diamond-direct dealer of the Amway multi-level marketing firm.


Pamela Anderson may break out her self-named wine should there be a successful outcome to her protesting a Port Moody park’s proposed roadway.

Malcolm Parry /

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BOTTOMS UP: Actress and animal-activist Pamela Anderson has joined others opposing a proposed roadway through a Port Moody park. If successful, they could celebrate with toasts of Anderson’s name-brand wine. That would be a step-up from the tankerloads of Baby Duck produced by Port Moody’s old Andre’s winery. Coincidentally, that concern’s former site is contentious, too, with three towers and nine lower buildings now proposed.

DOWN PARRYSCOPE: Brexiteering Britons may ruefully sing Three Blind Mice on that children’s rhyme’s 510th anniversary Oct. 12.

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4Oct

Town Talk: Britain’s Red Arrows fly over Coal Harbour

by admin

https://vancouversun.com/


Portrayed with a Red Arrows aerobatics team’s poster, British High Commissioner Susan le Jeune d’Allegeerschecque, Consul General Nicole Davison and guests had just seen the real Royal Air Force jets fly past them.


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STRAIGHT ARROWS: A key factor in aerial combat — literally a matter of life and death — is to be in exactly the right place at exactly the right time. Having the sun behind you helps, too. Full marks, therefore, to the Royal Air Force’s Red Arrows aerobatics team that was scheduled for a Coal Harbour flypast at 1700 hours recently. With the declining sun glistening on their red-white-and-blue tail fins, the team’s BAE Hawk trainer jets skimmed over at 5 on the dot. As they banked and climbed away, workhorse aircraft — de Havilland Beaver and Otter float planes — resumed their everyday takeoffs and landings.


Vancouver Chief Constable Adam Palmer, Mayor Kennedy Stewart and others saw the RAF Red Arrows aerobatics team’s jets speed over Coal Harbour.

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Vancouver Mayor Kennedy Stewart, Chief Constable Adam Palmer, Bard on The Beach artistic director Christopher Gaze and others watched the proceedings from the Pan Pacific hotel’s eighth-floor deck. They were guests of British High Commissioner to Canada, Susan le Jeune d’Allegeerschecque, formerly ambassador to Austria, and Vancouver-based consul-general Nicole Davison. “The Red Arrows are the best ambassador our country has,” said le Jeune d’Allegeerschecque, whose married name is more common in Brussels than London. As those two cities duke it out over Brexit, the fast-flying Red Arrows might remind Gaze and especially British Prime Minister Boris Johnson of Hamlet’s “slings and arrows of outrageous fortune.” Ditto for that soliloquy’s humbling conclusion: “And thus the native hue of resolution is sicklied o’er with the pale cast of thought.”


Vancouver International Film Festival executive director Jacqueline Dupuis welcomed Guest of Honour director Atom Egoyan to the 38th running.

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HAPPY ENDING: Cultural organization heads sometimes roll amid a blizzard of finger-pointing, trustee bickering and other nastiness. Not at the Vancouver International Film Festival where eight-year executive director Jacqueline Dupuis announced in July that she’ll leave at year’s end. Looking as relaxed and, dare one say, glamorous as in 2011, Dupuis launched the 38th annual festival by escorting director Atom Egoyan to a screening of his Guest of Honour feature film and to a gala later. Although called “a masterful piece of subtly sophisticated filmmaking” in the VIFF program, showbiz bible Variety deemed the Egypt-born Torontonian’s picture “hopelessly muddled … overplotted and under-reasoned, hysterical and stiffly earnest.”

CONSONANTAL DRIFT: If asked to define modern-day political equivocation, habitual phrase-tangler William Spooner might have replied with a self-defence tip: “Trust in judo.” Then again, his spoonerism of voters’ “elementary affluence” would entail a mere vowel movement.


Dr. Peter AIDS Foundation executive director Scott Elliott and chair Joy Jennissen reported the 16th multi-chef Passions gala raising a record $220,000.

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MORE AID: Dr. Peter Jepson-Young succumbed to HIV/AIDS in 1992 at age 35. CBC-TV’s weekly Dr. Peter Diaries detailed his then-almost-inevitable approach to death. Founded that year, the Dr. Peter AIDS Centre and related foundation began caring for those still living. A decade later, Nathan Fong recruited fellow chefs to launch the annual Passions gala that reportedly raised a record $220,000 recently. Executive director Scott Elliott said the centre now helps clients deal with hepatitis C and supports older ones “isolated and not participating in health care.” It will soon offer twice-weekly programs for female HIV/AIDS patients, he said.


David Robertson compiled his second cookbook, Gather, to mark the 10th anniversary of the Dirty Apron cooking school he and wife Sara founded.

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DIRTY DISHES: Wearing a whistle-clean apron, Dirty Apron co-founder David Robertson marked the cooking school’s 10th anniversary by launching his second cookbook, Gather. Some of the 100,000 folk he’s reportedly taught filled the Beatty Street joint to buy the book and sample such dishes as sake-braised pork belly, seafood and chorizo belly and Robertson’s sensational Thai-style coconut-lemon grass braised beef short ribs.


Maggie Sung had Taiwan Tourism Bureau director Linda Lin visit from San Francisco to inaugurate her as head of a new information centre here.

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TAIPEI TIES: There were complaints when electioneering defence minister Harjit Sajjan attended a recent gala honouring China. Not so when San Francisco-based Taiwan Tourism Bureau director Linda Lin inaugurated Maggie Sung to head our town’s new information centre for the island China claims to own. The ceremony followed Vancouver’s recent 100-event TaiwanFest that began celebrating Taiwanese culture in 1991.


Kyle Parent made the $2,100 quilt and designer Kate Duncan the $30,000 walnut bed to exhibit at the fifth annual Address show she staged.

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BED BUDS: As the huge IDS design exhibition ran downtown, furniture designer-manufacturer Kate Duncan and curator Amber Kingsnorth staged their own fifth annual show titled Address. It occupied five-times-larger premises at Malkin Street’s Eastside Studios. As well as mature and emerging exhibitors from Pacific Northwest states and Alberta, the event welcomed newcomers from Saskatoon, Toronto and Texas. Port Alberni-raised Duncan exhibited a solid walnut bed and side tables tagged at $30,000. Calgary native Kyle Parent added a $2,100 bedspread from his ktwpquilts.com concern.


Designers Madeleine Sloback and Annaliesse Kelly exhibited artworks by Miriam Aroeste and Sandra Lowe in their East Vancouver studio/office.

Malcolm Parry /

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GO EAST, YOUNG WOMAN: Vancouver’s creative activities are enhanced — some say dominated — east of Main Street. The 23rd annual Eastside Culture Crawl alone will include 500 artists, artisans and designers Nov. 14-17. The latter include interior designers Annaliesse Kelly and Madeleine Sloback who, although business competitors, share chic Pender Street premises. They mount thrice-yearly exhibitions there, most recently by Mexican-born painter Miriam Aroeste and Okanagan-raised photographic artist Sandra Lowe.


Paisley Smith wore spilling-pipeline headgear alongside Lawrence Paul Yuxweluptun whose paintings she animated for her Unceded Territories film.

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TOP HAT: California-based Canadian Paisley Smith wore a simulated oil-pipeline helmet to promote her “immersive” VIFF film, Unceded Territories. Screening in a Vancity Theatre kiosk to Oct. 2, it addresses climate change and Indigenous civil rights with animated interpretations of works by Cowichan/ Syilx artist Lawrence Paul Yuxweluptun whose usual headgear is a four-feathered straw fedora.

DOWN PARRYSCOPE: Crown yourself inventively for Mad Hatter Day Oct. 6.

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24Aug

Cookbook to serve up profits to help feed underprivileged in Downtown Eastside

by admin

Food Stories: A Cookbook for a Cause delivers delicious recipes while also serving up personal stories that are good for the soul.

There are 21 B.C. chefs highlighted in the book ($40 at Gourmet Warehouse and at foodforall.ca). All the profits from the project will be donated to A Better Life Foundation meal program that helps to get food to people in need on in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside.

“It’s not about advertising for restaurants,” said Jenn Coe who created Food For All, the publishing the imprint for Food Stories, with her partner Sherwin Ngan.

“It is a story of hardship, and how that can inspire you to give back and nourish. These chefs all seem to come from a similar thread. Even if it isn’t a story of hardship it’s an experience or circumstance that motivated them day in and day out for 12 to 15 hour days. You’re feeding people, it is a beautiful thing, and it usually stems from some experience.”

The road to the publication began when the couple’s seven-year-old sons Quinn and Jonathan raised $20,000 for a family in need. The pair’s hard work and dedication inspired Coe and Ngan to start their publishing platform and to focus on the issue of food insecurity.


Food For All publishers Jenn Coe, left, and Sherwin Ngan with their sons Quinn, left, and Johnathan. Photo credit: Hakan Burcuoğlu

Hakan Burcuoglu /

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Sherwin and Coe then enlisted Vancouver’s Mark Brand, founder of A Better Life Foundation. They knew that Brand, the proprietor of Save-On Meats, believed food is a human right and that he was on the front lines when it came to the fight against food insecurity.

They asked to meet with Brand to talk about the book and the donation to his foundation. Also at that meeting last fall was Hakan Burcuoğlu, the founder of the blog/online magazine The Curatorialist. He had been with Brand earlier to take pictures for his blog and Brand had suggested he come along to the meeting.


Hakan Burcuoğlu is the writer and photographer for the cookbook Food Stories: A Cookbook for a Cause. Photo: Linda Gallo

Hakan Burcuoğlu /

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“He told me that a couple of good Samaritans founded a publishing company and wanted to publish a book for his foundation,” said Burcuoğlu.

Soon Burcuoğlu found himself volunteering to write and shoot the project free of charge, and dove right in with his own recipe for the type of cookbook he wanted to own and read.

“I own a lot of cookbooks, and I have some personal bones to pick with compilation cookbooks specifically because I feel the common denominator for compilation cookbooks is just all these chefs are from the same city,” said Burcuoğlu.

“There’s nothing that threads it otherwise. There is no monofilament that threads all these stories. It’s kind of arbitrary, so I wanted to create a compilation cookbook where it would be something more special. The sentiment, the feeling that threads this book is that of intimacy. It’s of private heartfelt memories. It’s of poignance. Some chefs featured in the book have shared very, very private memories.”

Some of those stories include the topics of transitioning and coming out.

“The vision was always to create something that transcended being a mere object of charity,” said Burcuoğlu.

“We wanted it to be literature. We wanted it to be artful. We wanted it to be colourful. Lots of good pictures … the human aspect of this business.”

The stories are interesting and the pictures are lovely and as comfortable as the food. Nothing in Food Stories screams stylists have been here.

“These recipes are not arbitrary; these recipes are from their own childhood, from their own providence,” said Burcuoğlu. “Every single recipe from every chef holds a tremendous place in their hearts and minds. They mean the world to these chefs.”

This is a charitable endeavour that hopes to help out the ever-increasing problem of food insecurity.

“There are people like me who were single moms living in basement suites who are getting decent salaries but still not enough to live in Vancouver in particular,” said Coe.

“Those are the things that don’t meet the eye. It’s not the Downtown Eastside that’s really dramatic and shocking, it’s your everyday people that you wouldn’t expect that are sending their kid off to school with some crackers in their lunch box that’s it. They are going malnourished, and that leads to mental health and that leads to health care dollars. It’s a vicious cycle.”

Coe says the long-term goal is for Food For All to expand the book model into other cities and communities across North America.

“That would be so great,” Coe said.

Related

Recipes


Kadieann Tighe’s artichoke cakes with vegan hollandaise. Photo: Hakan Burcuoğlu

Hakan Burcuoğlu /

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Artichoke Cakes and Mushrooms with Vegan Hollandaise

Created by chef Kadieann Tighe

1 can (400g) artichoke hearts, drained

1 celery stalk, roughly chopped

1 cup (250 mL) panko breadcrumbs

1/8 cup (30 mL) whole wheat flour

4 cloves garlic, divided

1 tbsp (15 mL) chives, chopped

1/4 tsp (1 mL) Old Bay seasoning

Salt, to taste

Vegetable oil, for frying

2 king oyster mushrooms, cleaned, tops removed

Extra virgin olive oil

2 sprigs thyme

Black pepper, freshly cracked, to taste

1 1/2 tbsp (22.5 mL) vegan butter

1 tbsp (15 mL) all purpose flour

1/2 cup (125 mL)  almond milk, or other non-dairy milk

1 pinch turmeric

1 tsp (5 mL) lemon juice

1.2 tsp (2.5 mL) nutritional yeast

Artichoke Cakes: In a food processor, pulse together the artichoke hearts, celery, bread crumbs, flour, 2 cloves garlic, herbs and spices. Stop periodically to scrape down the sides to blend evenly. Leave mixture in a chunky consistency, do not over blend. Season with salt to taste.

Divide mixture into 4 equal parts to form patties. Heat a medium sized skillet over medium heat. Add enough oil to cover the bottom of the pan. Cook patties on each side for about 3 to 4 minutes, or until they form a brown crust.

Mushrooms: Cut mushroom stems into 5 cm chunks and soak overnight in a bowl of warm water. Remove from water and pat dry.

Heat a medium sized skillet over medium — high heat. Pour in oil to cover the pan. Add thyme and lightly mashed garlic. Place mushrooms in the skillet, season with salt and pepper and cook 3 to 4 minutes on each side, until golden brown in colour.

Vegan Hollandaise Sauce: Melt butter in a small pot over low heat. Once melted, add the flour, and whisk to make a roux. Slowly pour in about half the milk, whisking constantly. Then add the rest of the ingredients, while continuing to whisk. Once satisfied with the thickness and colour of the sauce, remove from heat. Set aside.

To serve: Portion cakes and mushrooms onto two plates. Drizzle the sauce generously over the artichoke cakes and enjoy.

Tips: The artichoke mixture can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. For the artichoke cakes, you can blend the panko crumbs in the food processor and coat the patties before frying to give them a crispier texture.

Serves 2. 

Mushroom Soup

Created by chef Juno Kim

1 cup (250 mL) dehydrated mushrooms

Water, as needed

3 cups (750 mL) fresh mushrooms, any variety, sliced

3 tbsp (45 mL) olive oil or grapeseed oil, divided

3 shallots or 1 onion, minced

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 tsp (5 mL) thyme, minced

1 tbsp (15 mL) red wine vinegar

Salt, to taste

4 1/4 (1.125 L) cups stock, chicken and/or vegetable

1 small lemon, juiced and zested

Smoked paprika or black pepper, freshly cracked, to taste

2 tbsp (30 mL) plain yogurt, for garnish

Toasted bread crumbs or croutons, for garnish

Soak dehydrated mushrooms in warm water and set aside. Meanwhile, heat a medium sized, heavy bottomed pot over medium — high heat. Pour in 2 tbsp (30 mL) of oil and add in the fresh mushrooms. Cook until golden brown in colour.

Add onion, garlic, along with the remaining oil, thyme, and vinegar. Salt liberally. Cook until onions become soft and translucent. Add hydrated mushrooms, along with their soaking liquid, into the mixture.

Cook for 2 minutes, then pour in the stock. Season with salt to taste. Lower heat, bring mixture to a simmer and leave to cook for 20 minutes. Once cooked, ladle half of the soup into a blender and purée until smooth. Return contents to the pot and combine well.

Taste and season with salt, paprika and lemon juice. Ladle soup into bowls and garnish with a drizzle of yogurt, bread crumbs and lemon zest.

Tip: When serving, add seared fresh mushrooms on top of the soup for a special touch.

Serves four.

Related

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16Aug

Metro Vancouver’s best ice cream: And the winner is …

by admin

Think back to some of your favourite celebrations. Odds are, ice cream was present for at least one of them.

“Any type of childhood or celebration with family and friends — the commonality is always ice cream,” Mark Tagulao, the founder and culinary director of La Glace in Vancouver says. “Celebrations, or even quiet moments with loved ones, that’s when you eat it. And I think that’s the underlying element of why we love it.

“It’s nostalgic. And it tastes good.”

The fact that it’s cool and creamy — and quite possibly the perfect summer treat — doesn’t hurt its almost-universal appeal, either. But, if you’re to ask Tagulao, you don’t need to be celebrating anything special to enjoy a good scoop.

“I could honestly polish off a litre in one sitting. That sounds really bad to admit,” he says with a laugh. “But, at least you know that I like it.”


Mint and chocolate scoops from La Glace.

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La Glace

Those who have stopped by Tagulao’s much-loved Vancouver ice cream shop, which set up shop at 2785 W 16th Ave. two years ago, are likely as well versed on the topic of quality ice cream as he is. In fact, the cold, creamy treats at La Glace are so delicious, they were voted by our readers as the best in the city.

“Oh, wow! That’s crazy,” Tagulao humbly exclaimed after being notified of the win. “It’s always great when you make something and people respond really well to it.”

Though, he admits to having a head’s up that his ice cream was truly memorable during a recent TED Talks event where he was sharing samples of his ice cream.

“There was this one woman who came up and was insisting on getting more ice cream,” Tagulao says with a laugh. “And I looked up, and it was Cher.”

Needless to say, he gave her a full-sized scoop rather than the tiny sample spoonful.

“That was a pretty cool moment,” Tagulao says.

Celebrities aside, taking the top spot on our reader-chosen list means that the efforts that Tagulao and his team have been making to get customers into the shop are more than working. Situated outside of the downtown core, La Glace is more of a destination for ice cream fans than a place that people simply stumble upon while exploring the city.

The location is an element that’s played a part in the growth story of La Glace, for better or for worse, prompting Tagulao to make sure that every lick or spoonful enjoyed at his store leaves a lasting impression on his customers to ensure that they come back for another scoop. And tell others to do so, too.

“We have a lot of regulars, and there have been a lot of new people coming in this summer,” he says proudly of his growing business. “It is more about getting the word out there because it is one of those places that is a destination. But, the fact is that people do make a point to come and check it out, and for newcomers who say that they heard about it and they heard great things — they’re making the effort to come out, too.”

One taste of the shop’s creamy creations is all that’s required to understand that these blends aren’t your average scoops of store-bought sweet stuff. The small-batch ice cream, which is made from scratch using a base of creme anglaise — a thick custard-like concoction containing heavy cream and egg yolks — is classified by Tagulao as French ice cream, a distinction he says helps to set it apart from the rest of the shops in the city.

“I think we’re still teaching Vancouverites that there are different types of ice cream,” Tagulao says of the dairy distinction. “The fact that we use Avalon Dairy Heavy Cream and egg yolks, for sure make it a much more rich, decadent product.”

The depth of flavour, and overall richness of the product, contributes to the scoop size that La Glace dishes out. In comparison to other shops, the servings may seem small. It’s a portion talking-point Tagulao says he often finds himself explaining to customers.

“When we started introducing our scoop service when we first opened up, people would look at the scoop and be like, ‘Oh, that’s a modest-sized scoop.’,” he recalls. “I think people are more used to American-style ice cream where you get a huge scoop and it starts to melt really fast and you have to eat it right away. The reason it melts really fast is that there’s more aeration in it and that’s why you get larger scoops.”


Vegan Coconut Pandan ice cream from La Glace.

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La Glace

Typically though, about halfway through a serving, Tagulao says those naysaying newcomers realize just why the portions are the restricted size that they are.

“When they started eating it, they were like ‘Whoa, this is really rich’,” he says with a laugh. “The fact is, you only need a little bit to satiate your appetite for it.”

The less-is-more approach is something that fans of Italian gelato are familiar with, where portion sizes are smaller and flavours more vivid. But, Tagulao is the first to inform customers that La Glace’s artisan iced treats are not gelato.

“We’re not gelato, we’re French ice cream,” he emphasizes. “There are a lot of great ice cream places in Vancouver, but we’ve kind of differentiated ourselves in the way that we are French ice cream and we make everything from scratch.

“We’re trying to create and maintain that level of high-end, luxury ice cream that’s accessible to everybody.”

That accessibility ambition has seen Tagulao introduce a curated selection of La Glace flavours into local grocery stores this season.

“It’s exciting,” he says of the wholesale branch of the business. “It’s definitely a new challenge each year. We’re in the beginning of year three now, and I see ‘expansion’ being the big word for us this year.”

But, he assures fans of his hand-crafted ice creams that the increased production won’t change the richness of his flavours.

“Because we are small batch, that’s where we can really maintain the quality of our product. You can scale up, if you scale up properly. For us, our plan is to do it slow and steady,” he says. “There’s certain compromises that I will not take that would sacrifice the quality. That’s what I really want to adhere to, is to not to dilute the product or the brand at all.”

At La Glace, the menu consists of a few steady favourites including Vanilla Bean, Vegan Coco Pandan Ice Cream with Pandan-infused coconut cream and Ganache Ice Cream.

“We have people who are angry if we ever run out of ganache,” Tagulao says with a laugh of the dark-chocolate mixture of heavy cream and chocolate that is a go-to for many of the shop’s regulars. “We use Valrhona chocolate, which is a really high-end chocolate supplier from France.

“People cant’ get enough of it.”

In addition to the regular flavours, there’s a revolving selection of specials that change each month.

“There’s about 20 or so flavours that rotate through each month. And then we always incorporate some seasonal flavours, as well,” Tagulao says. “We are always trying to do some new recipes. I like to play in the kitchen, so I always add in another flavour as a surprise.”

Tagulao admits that it’s the recipe testing — and tasting — that continues to be his favourite part of the job.

“Being able to be creative is what motivates me,” he says. “I always want to have something new to offer, but I also want to respect the fact that customers have their favourites.”

So, which flavour is his personal favourite?

“I know it’s going to sound really boring, but it’s the vanilla bean,” Tagulao says of his favourite flavour. “There’s just something about being able to add things to your ice cream. I’ll get the vanilla — but I’ll always throw in a spoonful of peanut butter or Maldon salt.

“I like playing with my ice cream that way.”

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Best ice cream shops, as recommended by our readers:

Metro residents know their hot spots when it comes to scoring the perfect ice cream (Note: we didn’t break down the voting into categories such as ice cream, gelato or soft serve. We’ll let you do that).

When we asked our readers to submit their recommendations for the best ice cream in Metro — and beyond — via social media and email, there were a few that immediately came out on top.

Hungry for the details? Here are the top 23 destination in and around the city to get a sweet ice cream treat.

As always, if you didn’t take part in our vote, well then, you’re not allowed to complain about the results. But you’re welcome to add your recommendations in the comments below.


TOP 23 ICE CREAM SHOPS

Alice & Brohm1861 Mamquam Rd #9, Squamish, aliceandbrohm.com

Bella Gelateria1001 W Cordova St, Vancouver, bellagelateria.com

Beta 5413 Industrial Ave, Vancouver, shop.beta5chocolates.com

Birchwood Dairy1154 Fadden Rd, Abbotsford, birchwooddairy.com

Dolce Gelato15045 Marine Dr, White Rock, 604-535-1070

Earnest Ice Cream (various locations) — 1829 Quebec St, Vancouver, earnesticecream.com

Elephant Garden Creamery2080 Commercial Dr, Vancouver, elephantgarden.ca

Glenburn Soda Fountain & Confectionary4090 Hastings St, Burnaby, glenburnsoda.com

Hottiesfoods Emporio31170 Dewdney Trunk Rd, Mission, hottiesfoods.com

Kent’s Ice Cream Co 47582 Yale Rd, Chilliwack, kentsicecreamco.ca

La Casa Gelato1033 Venables St, Vancouver, lacasagelato.com

La Glace2785 W 16th Ave, Vancouver, laglace.ca

Mario’s Gelati Ltd.88 E 1st Ave, Vancouver, mariosgelati.com

Mighty Moose Ice Cream42333 Yarrow Central Rd, Chilliwack, mighty-moose-ice-cream.business.site

Mike’s Place268 Gower Point Rd, Gibsons, mikesgelato.ca

Mister Artisan Ice Cream1141 Mainland St, Vancouver, madebymister.com

Nuvola Gelato & Dolci4712 Hastings St, Burnaby, nuvolagelato.com

Rain or Shine Ice Cream (various locations) — 3382 Cambie St, Vancouver, rainorshineicecream.com

Rocky Point Ice Cream (various locations) — 500 6th Ave #100, New Westminster, rockypointicecream.com

Rooster’s Ice Cream Bar1039 E Broadway, Vancouver, 778-379-6889

Screamers Soft Serve & Treats12211 Third Ave, Richmond, screamerssoftserve.cat

Soft Peaks Ice Cream25 Alexander St, Vancouver, softpeaks.ca

Umaluma Dairy-Free Gelato235 E Pender St, Vancouver, umaluma.com

[email protected]

11May

Town Talk: Gallery gala benefits Lions Gate Hospital just up the road

by admin


Farah Sayani chaired and Lions Gate Hospital Foundation chair Pierre Lebel aided a gala at the North Vancouver waterfront Polygon Gallery that reportedly netted $1.2 million for new-technology services.


Malcolm Parry / PNG

HOSPITAL AID: It’s hard to beat the cross-harbour view from the Polygon Gallery at the foot of North Vancouver’s Lonsdale Avenue.

But those who gathered there recently were figuratively looking the other way and 15 blocks up the hill to Lions Gate Hospital. Chaired by Farah Sayani, a 19th-annual event reportedly netted close to $1.2 million to support new-technology services at a hospital that recently completed a $100-million medical-and-surgical campaign. Ian Telfer and wife Nancy Burke represented the event’s published title sponsor, Goldcorp Inc., which was acquired by Newmont Mining Corp. recently to become Newmont Goldcorp. Perhaps relieved by events, Goldcorp chair Telfer looked a decade younger, as Burke always does.


Nancy Burke and long-time Goldcorp chair Ian Telfer represented the previously sold firm as the Lions Gate Hospital Foundation gala’s title sponsor.

Malcolm Parry /

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TOASTING SISTERS: It takes chutzpah to stage alcohol-themed events in high-performance-car showrooms. But Cheryl Nakamoto and Cam and Sarah McNeill’s Grape Juice wine tasting and auction in Asgar Verji’s Weissach Porsche showroom reportedly added $84,000 to a 12-year total nearing $900,000. This recent sum will elevate 42 girls from Big Sisters of Lower Mainland’s 137 wait-list, said executive director Hanne Madsen. She’s also pleased to launch Big Sisters’ Career Camp program for 36 girls in Grades 10 to 12 to spend a two-overnight July weekend readying for university at her Simon Fraser alma mater. Madsen, meanwhile, fancied a 1963 Porsche 356 coupe that would have cost her $100,000-plus.


Cam McNeill, Cheryl Nakamoto and Sarah McNeill’s Grape Juice event reportedly benefitted Big Sisters of Lower Mainland to the tune of $84,000.

Malcolm Parry /

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Big Sisters of Lower Mainland’s Hanne Madsen figured a $100,000-range 1963 Porsche 356 coupe would be an engaging alternative to her Honda Odyssey.

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TOUGH TIMES REVISITED: Williams Lake sisters Jeeti, Kira and Salakshan Poonin’s childhood years of sexual abuse are a quarter century behind them. Now residing in Vancouver, they had the courage to recount youthful anguish, along with challenges to the legal system and non-protecting parents, in director Baljit Sangra’s 85-minute movie Because We are Girls. Encouraging other women to not stay silent about abuse, it opened the recent DOXA Documentary Film Festival in Vancouver as part of the Justice Forum series.


Jeeti, Salakshana and Kira Poonin backed Baljit Sangra whose Because We Are Girls documentary revealed their quarter-century-past sexual abuse.

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CHOCS AWAY: Caren McSherry’s Hastings-off-Clark Gourmet Warehouse filled up recently with folks munching on chocolate in order to help children who seldom get that chance. That was when Firefighter of The Year Justin Mulcahy and Vancouver Firefighter Charities executive director James Docherty staged a contest between seven chocolatiers ranging from Christopher Bonzon to Thomas Haas. Mentored by Daniel Capadouca, Okanagan College’s Jalayne Jones won, and the event reportedly raised $21,000 for Snacks For Kids, Project Chef and the Strathcona Community Centre Backpack Program.


Dotty Kanke and Caren McSherry tempted firefighter Justin Mulcahy when the Chocolate Challenge event benefited children deprived of foodstuffs.

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LIONS’ PRIDE: The Vancouver Chinatown Lions Club celebrated its 65th anniversary at Keefer Street’s Floata restaurant recently. Close to 700 banqueters, including club president David Mao and event committee and three-time Lion of the Year chair Syrus Lee, saw non-member Richard K. Wong receive the organization’s Medal of Merit. Hong Kong-born former banker Wong was cited for “promoting intrinsic Canadian ideals of diversity, harmony and inclusion.” He continues to be involved in dozens of community and charitable endeavours. Wife Grace is feted for public service, too, not least as the S.U.C.C.E.S.S. community-service agency’s former chair. The Wongs also attended the club’s flag-raising ceremony on a newly installed pole in the adjacent Memorial Square. Possibly more delighted was 97-year-old former Master Warrant Officer George Chow, who fought with Canadian troops at the June 6, 1944 Normandy landing and the liberation of Holland. His many medals include that of the French Legion of Honour. Still, Victoria-born Chow’s long ambition was to see the Canadian flag fly over Vancouver’s Chinatown. Objective realized.


Former S.U.C.C.E.S.S. service agency chair Grace Wong saw the Chinatown Lions Club honor husband George’s countless community works.

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Consul General of China Tong Xiaoling congratulated George Chow, 97, who fought at the 1944 Normandy landings and then for the liberation of Holland.

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TRUTH TO TELL: Chinatown Lions Club board member and accounting firm principal Hebron Shyng expressed an amusing but pertinent opinion of the Canadian Revenue Agency: “I’d like to thank the CRA, without whose incomprehensible regulations I wouldn’t have a job.”

SLOW SPEEDSTERS: Most of the 250 police-escorted cars nose-to-tailing to Whistler in the recent Diamond Rally would have cost well over $100,000. Still, along with Luxury and Supercar Weekend and other related events, the rally has been money in the bank for Craig Stowe and Nadia Iadisernia. With collector-enthusiast Robbie Dixon, they have enjoined owners of cars that can exceed posted speeds three times over to putter along rural blacktop and benefit various charities as an option to startling pedestrians by razzing around downtown streets.


Diamond Rally organizers Craig Stowe and Nadia Iadisernia saw this Mercedes-Benz AMG GTR and 250 other exotics prepare for a Whistler roundtrip.

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CHERRY CHEERY: Linda Poole celebrated another Cherry Blossom Festival by staging Sakura Night in the Stanley Park Pavilion. Seven restaurants, from Benkei Ramen to Zen, served Japanese-themed cuisine, and five beer and wine purveyors helped attendees wash it down. Among the latter, Stanley Park Brewing general manager Doug Devlin said that the firm’s long-gestating restaurant-brew pub should open in the park’s 2016-closed Fish House premises by mid-June. Ten location-only beers will be served alongside the firm’s six existing one, Devlin said. The 260-seat restaurant will be managed by Andre Bourque and Ryan Moreno’s Surrey-based Joseph Richard Group as the first Vancouver operation in their Richmond-to-Chilliwack chain.


Linda Poole, who stages the Cherry Blossom Festival’s Sakura Night, always counts on be-gowned friend Daphne Crocetti to fly in from Switzerland.

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Plying beer at a Cherry Blossom Festival event, Neesha Hothi and Doug Devlin said Stanley Park Brewing’s brew-pub reopening of the Fish House is nigh.

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DOWN PARRYSCOPE: While Queen Victoria might finally be amused to have a great-great-great-great-great-grandson named Archie, his great-grandma, Queen Elizabeth, would doubtless welcome a Betty.

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23Apr

Daphne Bramham: What is Indigenous Canadian food? The answer might lead to more than good cooking

by admin


Award-winning Chef Shane Chartrand is on a journey to discover indigenous food in Canada. He’s one of the chefs featured in the six-part, web series, Red Chef Revival, available on STORYHIVE’s YouTube channel and on Telus Optik TV on demand. Chartrand’s cookbook, Tawaw: Progressive Indigenous Cuisine, will be released this fall by House of Anansi Press.


See Notes / Direction / PNG

It’s always a bit embarrassing when foreigners ask what Indigenous Canadian food is. After long, torturous pause, most Canadians might stumble out an answer like poutine, tourtière, bannock, Saskatoon pie or Nanaimo bars.

Of course, none of those is really Indigenous. They came with explorers and settlers who brought flour and sugar.

Yet, long before they arrived, Indigenous people had lived for centuries eating local plants and animals.

Initially, smart newcomers relied on their local knowledge to initially survive in this unfamiliar land. Others like Sir John Franklin and others tragically learned the folly of attempting self-reliance.

But because of colonization much of that knowledge has been lost along with other cultural practices and Indigenous languages.

“Even Indigenous people don’t understand what Indigenous food is,” chef Shane Chartrand told me when we talked recently. “We don’t know our own food. Powwow food is bannock, burgers, gravy and fries. That’s not Indigenous in my humble opinion.”

Recovering those foods, recipes and cooking techniques is something that Indigenous chefs like Chartrand are now in a position to explore.


Chef Shane Chartrand’s kale salad. Photo: Cathryn Sprague

House of Anansi Press /

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In the style of Anthony Bourdain, three award-winning chefs fanned out across Canada to Indigenous communities that they didn’t know to help prepare and eat food that included unusual ingredients like cougar, bison tongue and seal.

Answering the question of what is Indigenous food is the premise of a six-part series called Red Chef Revival, available on the Storyhive YouTube channel and to Telus Optik TV On Demand subscribers.

Chartrand visited Nisga’a people near Prince Rupert and was served chow mein buns.

“I thought it was ridiculous. No way is it part of Indigenous culture. But they told me that along Cannery Row, there were Japanese, Indigenous and Chinese and they shared recipes so it becomes Indigenous,” he said.

“I don’t agree. But they think it is.”

He feels the same way about “powwow food” — bannock, burgers and fries with gravy.

But the seal stew prepared by Nisga’a fishing families in Port Edward fits Chartrand’s definition to the letter.

Not only did it taste really good — better, Chartrand said, than the other four ways he’s eaten seal — it’s sustainable and healthy.

One of the tragedies of lost Indigenous food and cooking is that it’s been replaced by sugar-, fat- and carbohydrate-laden diets that have contributed to skyrocketing rates of diabetes and heart disease.

(For the record, the chef is opposed to a commercial seal hunt. He supports sustainable hunting with every part of the animal used.)

The genesis of Chartrand’s personal journey of discovery is a desire to connect with the Cree culture denied him as a child. Taken into foster care at two, he was adopted by a Metis Chartrand’s family at seven.

His father taught him about hunting and fishing. But it’s only as an adult that Chartrand began learning about his own people’s traditions.

By then, he was already a rising star in the kitchen, having apprenticed at high-end restaurant kitchens. He’s competed on the Food Network’s Chopped and, in 2017, was the first Indigenous chef to win the Gold Medal Plates Canadian Culinary Championships and is the chef at the River Cree Resort on Enoch First Nation’s land near Edmonton.

This fall, Chartrand’s cookbook — Tawaw: Progressive Indigenous Cuisine — will be published by Anansi Press. It’s about his life, his travels and includes more than 70 recipes using traditional foods.

Top Chef finalist and Haudenosaunee chef Rich Francis seems less of a purist. While he acknowledges in the series’ first episode that bannock doesn’t really fit the definition of Indigenous food, Francis made both bannock and risotto on his visit to the Osoyoos band.

For the risotto, Francis used sage and cactus gathered on the Osoyoos lands that he described as “the Hollywood of rezs.” Both were cooked to accompany cougar seared over an open fire. The cougar was shot because it was deemed a threat to residents.

Like Chartrand, Francis isn’t promoting commercial hunting. But last year he

did threaten to sue the Ontario government for the right to cook wild game in his restaurant because government regulations are one of the many barriers to Canadians’ understanding, knowing and even tasting Indigenous foods.

Elk, deer, moose, bison, seal and the like can only be served at specially permitted events and not in restaurants. Only farm-raised meat can be served and that requires finding suppliers who can raise enough to guarantee a steady supply.

The idea of eating what the Canadian land alone can produce aligns perfectly with concerns about climate change and a sustainable food supply.

Rediscovering traditional foods with Indigenous chefs guiding the way seems a perfect way to learn how to do that.

Beyond that, there’s reconciliation. So many attempts at it are so earnest, so political and so difficult for some people to swallow, that sitting down and eating together may provide a new pathway because who doesn’t love a good meal?

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Twitter: @bramham_daphne


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5Apr

Town Talk: Gotham Steakhouse turns 20

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Hy’s of Canada president-CEO Neil Aisenstat and COO Megan Buckley welcomed guests to Gotham’s 20th-anniversary celebrations as Buckley did when the steakhouse opened on the site of an earlier Bible store.


Malcolm Parry / PNG

HOLY BEEFSTEAKS, BATMAN: Just as she did in 1999, Hy’s of Canada COO Megan Buckley welcomed guests to the Gotham steakhouse’s recent anniversary celebration, this one the 20th. As wall-to-wall invitees enjoyed abundant drinks and food, Hy’s president-CEO Neil Aisenstat cracked: “We can still give it away.” They can sell it, too, and have done since 1955 when Neil’s late father, Hy Aisenstat, launched the self-named chain in Calgary. Our Hornby-off-Dunsmuir Hy’s Encore has served 60-day, dry-aged rib steaks and other prime cuts since 1962.


Musicbiz partners Sam Feldman and Bruce Allen flanked singer Sarah Maclachlan during a debut event at Gotham in which Allen had a financial interest.

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Three blocks away at Gotham, fine-weather patrons enjoy an open-to-the-heavens patio where a Bible store once stood. Its succeeding steak house adopted the Gotham nickname that author Washington Irving coined for New York in 1807. Irving’s inspiration was an ancient English village where the name reflected its beginnings as a “home of goats.” In a tactic worth retesting today, that small community’s 13th-century residents reputedly outfoxed tax collectors by simulating insanity. Here, though, Gotham patrons must keep their wits about them when negotiating a curving stairway to the basement washrooms, especially after a few beverages. When one distinguished-looking man’s possibly overcautious descent resulted in a usually embarrassing personal accident, he nonchalantly announced: “Well, this is a black suit, so nobody’ll know.” What fellow diners upstairs would have known is that such deception was never needed for Gotham’s high-calibre fare and service.


Macdonald Development Corp’s John Macdonald attended the Gotham event while father Rob caddied for other son Stuart in the PGA Tour Series-China.

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FORE: Macdonald Development Corp. vice-president John Macdonald attended the Gotham anniversary. Hardly surprising, as the group his father Rob Macdonald founded owns the property and the adjoining St. Regis Hotel and is an equal partner in the restaurant. Among MDC’s current Canadian and U.S. projects, the Lakestone development encompasses 1,300 speculation-tax-free units near Okanagan Golf Club’s Bear and Quail courses. Missing the Gotham elbow-bender, Macdonald Sr. was at Chongqing’s Poly Golf Course where he caddied for younger son Stuart in the PGA Tour Series-China.


Oliver Young’s 1927 Triumph 500 TT should pale beside his restoring 1930 Bentley Speed Six car like one that outraced a cross-France express train.

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SUCH A KICK: Spring sunshine awakens hibernating motorcycles. Although few riders may be in their nineties, some bikes are. Among them, restorer-collector Oliver Young’s 1927 Triumph 500 TT could hit its present age in miles per hour when new and deftly tuned. Young wouldn’t repeat that, but he is readying a four-wheeled British road-burner. His 1930 Bentley Speed Six is a stablemate of one that raced the Blue Train from Cannes and, despite a Channel-ferry crossing, was in London before the crack express reached Calais.


After retrieving thousands of global plants to propagate at his nursery, Dan Hinkley was astonished by city sculptor Marie Khouri’s bronze tree trunks.

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TREES BY MARIE: Local nurseries will soon face an onslaught of folk seeking familiar and new plants for their yards, verandas, window boxes and pots. Meanwhile, having searched the world for the thousands of species he’s propagated in Washington state, celebrated plantsman Dan Hinkley found an unexpected one here. While he and landscape architect-UBC teacher Ron Rule toured Robert and Marie Khouri’s garden, Hinkley was entranced by bronze-looking tree trunks among the greenery. In fact, they were genuine bronze artworks sculpted by Mme. Khouri. “I must have some of these,” Hinkley said for the umpteenth time during his five-decade career.


Teetotaller James Walton and Michelle Mackay showed equipment he made for his Storm Brewing operation along with one of the beers produced there.

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BOTTOMS UP: The Sun reported March 5 that increasing property taxes may force many craft breweries from East Vancouver. Meanwhile, 100 such producers will serve 300 beers and ciders when the 10th annual Vancouver Craft Beer Week opens May 31. Attendees may toast teetotalling former mushroom farmer James Walton, who founded Storm Brewing in 1994, welded together some fermentation tanks and literally got craft-beer’s pot boiling.


With plans mooted to double out-of-hospital cardiac-arrest survival, Kevin Eastwood recalled Sonja Bennett helping save his life on an L.A. sidewalk.

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BACK TO LIFE: Cardiac arrests reportedly kill 40,000 Canadians annually. Eighty-five per cent of arrests occur outside hospitals, with nine out of 10 dying. At its annual gala May 31, the Heart & Stroke Foundation of Canada will campaign to double that 10 per cent survival rate by 2029. Heartening news for city moviemaker Kevin Eastwood, who was 36 when felled on an L.A. sidewalk. Calling 911, actress-friend Sonja Bennett was guided to apply cardiopulmonary resuscitation until defibrillator-equipped paramedics arrived. Several of survivor Eastwood’s friends then took CPR training. Good for them, and maybe you.


Robert Lee’s photo of him with a 1992 hotel development had a friend crack: “You were just starting to make money then, and now you’re printing it.”

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BUT SERIOUSLY, FOLKS: Bob Lee was profiled in The Sun March 30 for convincing fellow UBC governors to launch residential and commercial developments that generated $1.6 billion. Rather like a self-deprecatory comedian, UBC commerce grad Lee told them: “I’m not really an academic person, but I do know a little bit about real estate.” Likewise, when former city mayor Tom Campbell pooh-poohed his opening bids for a 260-unit tower, golfer Lee deadpanned: “The pressure made me shoot 30 above my usual high 80s.” Offered the Ernst & Young accounting firm’s Entrepreneur of The Year Award, Lee cracked: “I thought they were calling to ask me about raising money.” Even at his retirement-tribute dinner, where then-premier Gordon Campbell said: “You and I all know that Bob isn’t going anywhere,” Lee promptly replied: “Thank you for coming. I’m leaving now.”

DOWN PARRYSCOPE: The Revised Ottawa Dictionary defines “principle” only as money.

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26Feb

Death cap mushrooms proliferating in B.C., experts warn

by admin


A “death cap” mushroom.


THE CANADIAN PRESS

The most deadly mushroom on the planet is expanding its habitat in urban and rural areas across B.C. and doctors are now being educated on recognizing the symptoms of poisonings.

Poisonous death cap mushrooms (Amanita phalloides) initially came to B.C. on the roots of European trees like hornbeam, beech, hazelnut, lindens chestnut and oaks. They now grow under mature native trees as well and are putting serious and amateur foragers, children, pets, and others at risk.

Although they won’t start growing under trees for at least another few months, doctors are being cautioned now on ways to recognize the signs of mushroom poisoning to prevent fatalities, serious illness and hospitalizations.

An article in the current B.C. Medical Journal says there is a high risk that doctors will see more and more patients falling ill because the death cap is spreading. That has been borne out by sightings and data collected by the province’s best resource — the Vancouver Mycological Society and the Vancouver Island Mycological Society.

In 2016, a Victoria toddler died after he ate a death cap plucked from the ground in a residential neighbourhood.

In 2008, a 63-year-old Vancouver woman ate an immature death cap after mistaking it for a paddy straw mushroom. In 2003, a 43-year-old Victoria man confused an immature death cap for a puffball. Both those patients recovered in hospital.

Death caps usually grow from June to November. They are easily confused for edible mushrooms, depending on the stage of maturity.

According to the Drug and Poison Information Centre, in 2018, there were 156 individuals who fell ill across B.C. after accidental ingestion of wild mushrooms. There is no specific data for death caps. But the 156 reports represent an increase over the previous year when there were 145 reports. The figures exclude reactions to hallucinogenic mushroom reactions as well as to store-bought, herbal or medicinal mushrooms, all taken intentionally.

Of concern is the fact that most of the individuals who fell ill were children (117 in 2018 and 110 in 2017). Many children and adults were rushed to the hospital.

The article by Maxwell Moor-Smith, Raymond Li and Dr. Omar Ahmad in the B.C. Medical Journal says death caps have become an invasive species in the Pacific Northwest and their spread “has led to cases of morbidity and mortality from ingestion … and an ongoing risk of misidentification.

“Health care providers need to be aware of this risk as prompt recognition and appropriate management are critical for positive patient outcomes.”

Paul Kroeger, co-founder of the Vancouver Mycological Society, said death caps are now growing in the most populated areas of B.C., including parks in the heart of cities. They are routinely seen under Hornbeam trees and Garry Oak trees planted on streets and in parks across Vancouver and Victoria.

Kroeger said he hasn’t heard of any dog poisonings here, but in California, pet deaths have become a major issue.

“Dogs seem to be attracted to them, and the odds of survival are fairly poor.”

Kroeger said mushrooms should always be cooked and restaurants should ensure they aren’t purchasing mushrooms from “backdoor sellers.” There are nearly 20,000 mushroom species in B.C. and most of them are poisonous. Last fall, Kroeger assisted the B.C. Centre for Disease Control in a public information campaign dissuading urbanites from foraging for mushrooms.

“We had a mass poisoning at the police chief’s retirement banquet in 1991. Those were morels, not death caps, but the advice remains the same. There are foragers who overestimate their knowledge and there are also people who think it’s okay to eat whatever is in their path, especially if it’s in their yard.”

The B.C. Restaurant and Food Services Association has not heard about the concerns related to the spread of the death cap. But Ian Tostenson, CEO of the association, said he’s grateful for the heads up and said he would communicate the matter to members. “Usually, we rely on Health Canada to let us know when there’s something to be concerned about but in this case, I will alert restaurant members to these articles.”

[email protected]

Twitter: @MedicineMatters


What to do if you’ve eaten a death cap or other poisonous mushroom

• Symptoms include cramping, abdominal pain, vomiting, diarrhea and dehydration. Seek medical care.

• Call the 24-hour Drug and Poison Information Centre at 604-682-5050.

• Save the whole mushroom in paper or wax paper (not plastic) and place in fridge for later testing.

• Make a note of where the mushroom was found, when it was eaten and how much was consumed.

• Wear gloves or wash hands after handling.




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11Jan

Town Talk: Revisiting folk from 2009 who helped bring about today

by admin

2009 began somewhat in reverse to 2019. Back then, newly inaugurated Barack Obama occupied the White House and signs of a severe economic recession were declining. Here in B.C., gang violence increased dramatically just as we celebrated being assigned the 2010 Winter Olympics. Principal bidder Jack Poole would die before those low-snow games began. Famed architect Arthur Erickson perished, too, as would two of the 35 folk (and one fast ferry) portrayed on this page. Still, they and the 33 others revisited from 2009 columns contributed in still-evident ways to the character of the province we cherish.


Nanaimo-born singer-pianist Diana Krall had friend Sir Elton John join a benefit concert for Vancouver General Hospital’s Leukemia Bone Marrow Transplant program in memory of her mother Adella who succumbed to multiple myeloma in 2002.

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Gwen Point accompanied husband Steven, B.C.’s first Aboriginal lieutenant governor, at the 64th-annual Garrison Military Ball that no longer entailed the presentation of serving or retired warriors’ debutante daughters.

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Restaurateur chefs Rob Feenie, Tojo Hidekazu, Michel Jacob, Pino Posteraro and Thomas Haas participated in the Senza Frontiere dinner that benefitted the Chef’s Table Society’s bursary and scholarship programs.

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Nimisha Mukerji and Philip Lyall premiered their 65_Red Roses documentary about cystic fibrosis patient Eva Markvoort who, despite a double-lung transplant, would die in 2010 but still spur medical-research fundraising.

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Kasi Lubin and Shauna Hardy Mishaw kicked off the eighth-annual Whistler Film Festival they’d founded with a $30,000 fundraising and that, under Hardy Mishaw, has become a fixture that bow screens 90 international movies.

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Cognoscenti already knew that one way to get vehicles like this 1938 Alfa Romeo 8C 2900 B Coupe into Pebble Beach concourse d’elegance contention was to have them restored by RX Autoworks’ Mike Taylor and Ian Davey.

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Graduate student Hong Zhu was the first to take up residency when Prospero International Realty Inc. chair Bob Lee opened the 81-room MBA House at the University of B.C.’s Robert H. Lee Graduate School of Business.

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Recently retired from the National Ballet where fellow principal dancer Karen Kain called her “the iron butterfly,” Chan Hon Goh prepared to lead the Goh Ballet company that parents Choo Chat Goh and Lin Yee Goh founded.

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With four PuSh International Arts Festivals behind him, founder Norman Armour prepared to welcome 30,000 ticket buyers to a 21-show season and to continue doing so until his retirement from a much-grown event in 2018.

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One year after the institution he headed became Emily Carr University of Art + Design, president Ron Burnett told students that up to 96 percent of them could expect to “become what you imagine, from an artists to an entrepreneur.”

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B.C. Children’s Hospital Foundation Crystal Ball committee member Sherry Doman welcomed friend and 20-times ball supporter Indra Sangha who, though now terminally ill with ever-spreading cancers, said: “I had to come.”

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Rev. Mpho Tutu heard then-nine-year-old pianist Jeffrey Luo play Mozart and Chopin airs at a benefit for her archbishop-father’s Desmond Tutu Charitable Foundation and the Dali Lama Centre for Peace and Education.

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Having starred in the multi-Genies-winning The Necessities of Life, star Natar Ungalaaq flew from Igloolik, Nunavut for a screening attended by director Benoit Pilon’s former classmate, city-based filmmaker Lynne Stopkewich.

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Michaela Morris and Michelle Bouffard’s now-dissolved House Wine Enterprises firm was a go-to for many seeking wine know-how and especially those with 2,000-bottle cellars that needed supervision and enhancement.

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Concord Pacific chief Terry Hui and Westbank Projects Corp’s Ian Gillespie were already big-time developers when they checked what architect Walter Francl had done for Bob Rennie’s 97-year-old Wing Sang Building.

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Ask A Woman event-planning co-principal Tammy Preast lifted 14-year-old Casey at a gala-benefit for the Love On A Leash firm she founded that would later raise funds for such organizations as the Dhana Metta Rescue Society.

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Brent Comber rescued water-borne forest debris to carve imposing artworks and Obakki clothing firm principal Treana Peake raised funds to construct water wells and permanent schools for those living without either in South Sudan.

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On the last day of the year, a marine-transport vessel carried away a Pacificat fast ferry, one of three that failed to meet operational and economic demands and that, after long mothballing, were sold for pennies on the dollar.

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27Oct

Janes chicken burgers recalled due to possible salmonella

by admin





The Canadian Food Inspection Agency says Sofina Foods Inc. is recalling Janes brand Pub Style Chicken Burgers from the marketplace due to possible salmonella contamination, including one in B.C.

The agency says the uncooked breaded chicken burgers were sold across the country in 800 gram packages with a best before date of May 14, 2019 (UPC code 0 69299 12491 0).

In its recall warning the CFIA says Salmonella investigations led by the Public Health Agency of Canada have linked frozen raw breaded chicken products to 25 illnesses in nine provinces — one in B.C., three in Alberta, three in Saskatchewan, one in Manitoba, 12 in Ontario, two in Quebec, one in New Brunswick, one in P.E.I., and one in Newfoundland and Labrador.

It says two people have been hospitalized, though no deaths have been reported.

The agency, however, did not say whether any of the illness were directly related to the products being recalled.

It says the recalled items should be thrown out or returned to the store where they were purchased.

Symptoms of Salmonella poisoning typically include fever, headache, vomiting, nausea, abdominal cramps and diarrhea, but long-term complications can include severe arthritis.

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