Posts with tag "wine"

Lise Watier and Wine Tasting

This is not your usual food and wine blog post but it does reflect my other beloved combination: makeup and wine. The Lise Watier 40th Anniversary celebration at UVA Wine Bar was an intimate event to talk about their company and products with a wine and cheese tasting session.  I’ve always liked UVA Wine Bar for their cocktails (ask for Evelyn or Mark!), the small intimate room, and outstanding PR & Customer Service (I complained about them on Twitter once and they responded back asap…total respect for that). So with all this in mind, I thought it was too good of an opportunity to  miss out.

The Lise Watier team was in town to celebrate with local Vancouver medias and bloggers the 40th anniversary of the company.

In addition, other highlights were the Fall collection Millésime reveal and the overview of Lise Watier best sellers that marked the history throughout the last 40 years.  Some of their best sellers include their Professional Correctors, Waterproof Eyeliner (which I use and love), lipstick and crayon, and the Neige Eau de toilette.  At the event, they also announced about a new eCommerce site and a focus on expanding to the United States.  All around fantastic news for this reputable Canadian company.

As part of the evening, attendees had the chance to do a quick makeover with one of the makeup artists.  Of course, I went in to get my face done and came out with a new one (kidding).

We also got very generous swag of their Millesime collection: Duo Shadow and Glitter, Rouge Gourmand, Eyeshadow Quartet, eye crayon, and a wine glass (how fitting)

I’ve been using the eyeshadow quartet and it’s really amazing.  Even after a few hours, it still stays on as if you just freshly applied it.

Now on to the good stuff…the WINE! We had tastings of some pretty stellar bottles (my below scribbles from the orientation and tasting):

Mission Hill S.L.C. Sauvignon Blanc Semillon – An excellent white blend which is creamy and smooth on the palate. Quite fruity with a hint of honey. It definitely pairs well with fish, seafood, and chicken.

La Stella Fortissimo – Another excellent local wine. It’s a harmonious blend of merlot, cabernet sauvignon, sangiovese and cabernet franc. It’s deep full bodied red with a strong cherries presence and hints of chocolate and coffee. A good wine to bring to a cheese tasting

Cassini Cellars Syrah – This syrah is deep and intense with flavours that are more oaky, peppery, and spices-y (is that a word?)

It was a fun, well organized, intimate affair.  We were all very spoiled, had a fun time…..and I’ll probably be visiting UVA Wine Bar very soon and making myself very comfy at the bar.

UVA Wine Bar
900 Seymour St in Moda Hotel
Uva Wine Bar on Urbanspoon

The Cascade Room

The Cascade Room is THE place to go to be seen in the SOMA area.  People think you can only lounge and bar hop in downtown but the East side can hold its own.  The Cascade Room is undoubtedly the scene of local hipsters and scenesters.  It’s a casual restaurant that seems to have gotten the right formula in making it the quintessential neighborhood joint: good beer list, eclectic selection of cocktails, decent food, and friendly good looking staff.  Plus on occasion I may have inadvertently twirted (tweet+flirted) with whomever is behind their twitter account.

I’ve been to Cascade numerous times now: going on random unsuccessful first dates, catching the Olympics Opening, watching a Canucks’ game and more.  And soon, I do want to try to pop by and check out their Monday Quiz Night.

The below are a couple of dishes I had the last time I was at the restaurant.  One side dish I recommend getting as a starter is the polenta fries which are thick, hot, has touch of spice and crispy served with spicy curried mayo dip.  As much as I do like their fries, it’s hit and miss because there have been times when I found the fries to be salty.  But they are good starters to have with a drink or beer.

My friend and I first shared a large plate of fresh Wild Rocket Salad (sorry no pictures were taken).  The salad was mixed with cucumber, sweet red peppers, roasted pecans, Grana Padano, and mustard vinaigrette.

We also ordered the Mushroom Pizza

It’s a medium pizza of roasted mushrooms, pesto, edam & goat’s cheese, topped with fresh spinach.  It’s a simple nice thin crust pizza with light flavours.  I liked that even with the pesto and cheeses it wasn’t too greasy and messy.  The thin crust was more the chewy side but I can’t critique too much as Cascade is not like a fancy Italian restaurant.
I think they serve one of the most generous cheese platters around
It’s large platter of three cheese selections with stewed figs, toasted nuts, with apple slices & crostini.  That night we had brie, blue cheese, and edam (I think).  At this point, I’ve had my fair share of cocktails and the cheese platter helped prevent further intoxication.  I loved the sticky stewed figs and seemed to go well with all the cheeses.
I like the Cascade over it’s sister neighbor, Habit, because of the folks and atmosphere.  Even though it’s not a kitschy lounge or a fancy fine dining establish, what it has in spades is atmosphere.  When you walk in during a busy night, there seems to be that buzz in the air and you can see people having a good time.  Aside from taking a date here, it’s fun times observing other first dates unravel in front of you.
The Cascade Room
2616 Main St
Cascade Room on Urbanspoon

Rosa’s Cucina Italiana

Continuing with my adventures outside of downtown Vancouver, I went a tad further…like out to Port Moody. We went to a charming little Italian restaurant called Rosa’s Cucina Italiana. It’s owned and managed by a tough lady…the restaurant’s namesake. It’s popular with the locals but it doesn’t take reservations so expect to see a lineup even at 6pm. When we arrived at around 7pm, we waited for half and hour which is considered ‘not too bad’. With the wait in the wet cold, I hoped it was worth it.

The picture gallery of famous, somewhat famous, and infamous past patrons lined the walls. We found the likes of Canucks players past and present, singers like Michael Buble, politicians,…and Ron Jeremy.

I was warned about the portion size of the dishes. It was likened to Anton’s but few notches better. As we were waiting, we saw that most people left with a doggy bag of their dinner..hm.. Even with that in mind, I ordered appetizers to start

The dish of sauteed mushrooms was big with a half garlic’s worth in it. I appreciated the portion but it wasn’t that well cooked. The texture was still firm and it was only light sauteed and cooked. It needed a few more minutes in the pan.

My friend ordered the Spaghetti Vongole

It’s a simple spaghetti with clam and red sauce. It’s a big hefty platter and the sauce consisted of lots of minced onions, garlic, clams and tomatoes. However, it wasn’t terribly flavourful even with all that sauce. Also the spaghetti itself was questionably not freshly made.

I naively ordered the Mancotti

The mancotti is like between a lasagna and canneloni. It was a scary casserole of spinach, ricotta stuffed pasta in a rose sauce. Or more like pasta swimming in cheese, grease, and sauce. I only managed to eat two thirds of it.

Rosa’s is neither a high end nor a specialized Italian restaurant. It’s more like the food you get if you go to your Italian friend’s family for dinner. It’s all hearty, low key, and homecooked. It undeniably serves these dishes in huge quantities and portions but too huge for me.  Rosa and the staff were incredibly friendly and I always enjoy the vibe of a family run restaurant.

It is a few steps above an Anton’s or Anducci’s but it’s too much carbs and grease for me.

Rosa’s Cucina Italiana
2331 Clarke St
Port Moody, BC V3H
Rosa's on Urbanspoon