My November Adventures

November was a bit of a mess of a month. I was close to a burn-out after back to back film festival coverages and its why it took a while to wrap up the remaining films for those festivals. Luckily, that’s all done. With work also being an explosion of work, its been quite the crazy ride. I don’t foresee December being a lot better but at least, the slowed down posting schedule got my focus back on writing posts. With that said, not a really exciting month overall but still a few things to talk about plus at the end, there’s some December plans.

Not talking about any new projects until December’s wrap-up or January’s beginning of the year post as I have some final decisions to make on some possible changes or a new project/segment.

Blood in the Snow Festival

The ranking for the feature films (with the except of one Parallel Minds that I didn’t see):

  1. Come True (Review)
  2. For The Sake of Vicious (Review)
  3. Anything For Jackson (Review)
  4. The Return (Review)
  5. Hall (Review)
  6. Bloodthirsty (Review)
  7. Bleed With Me (Review)
  8. Shall We Play? (Review)

Overall, Blood in the Snow Festival was a good one. There were some really fun discoveries and some good direction on the stories that were being told. All the reviews for the feature films are up. I usually do something for short films but it already took so long to get this batch done that I haven’t had time to do that. I might still go back and highlight a few that I thought were rather unique and entertaining.

New Restaurant

New restaurant opened up yet and its a Hong Kong style noodle shop who has both curries but even more for the fish soup base that they have for their noodle soup. The noodle soup is ordered similar to what you’d do for Japanese ramen where you get to pick the base, the type of noodle and then 2 toppings. The soup itself actually has quite a bit of extra ingredients added in. I had the combo which included a drink and mine was the lemon ribena which is something very much part of the Hong Kong landscape. Can’t go back to visit in this current landscape but at least there’s food to make me feel more connected, right?

New Spices & Masks

The husband had some company coupon codes sort of deal so we went ahead and took a look at the catalogue. I have some fun candles on the way that didn’t make it on this post but we ordered the spices kit from Gourmet Inspirations. So far, we’ve only tried the Veggie Fusion which adds a nice kick to the veggies.

As for the masks, the Instagram posts says it all. I’ve tried a few companies that make masks and Hop La Gogosses is by far my favorite so I’ve returned a few times. Not to mention, they are close so when I have time, I usually try to do a pick-up instead of getting it delivered. They have these custom ones so you get to choose the front and back from a range of choices.

Black Friday Haul

  • Best Buy: Chromecast
  • Google Play: The Almost Gone, Very Little Nightmares
  • Cineplex: Rental: Guns Akimbo
  • Steam: Gnog, Jenny LeClue Detectivu, Celeste, Transference, Sea of Solitude, The Missing: J.J. Macfield and the Island of Memories
  • Xbox Ultimate Game Pass

Black Friday has pretty much mostly been an online deal even before the whole pandemic landscape so seeing as I did overall spend less this year, I ended up picking up on some of the sweet deals online for games and such. The only physical item I got was a new Chromecast. Our old Chromecast was starting really casting some things really well and was starting to get a little tempermental so we changed it and it seems to work better.

Everything else was mostly gaming related. Xbox Ultimate Game Pass for PC was dropped to $1/month and that’s great since I had a few games to catch up on so my next month of gaming is pretty much sort out since when I cut my subscription 2 months ago, I still had a few games that I hadn’t tried out yet.

As for Cineplex, there was some good rentals but the one that I’ve been meaning to watch is Guns Akimbo so that’s going to be done soon.

Christmas Marathon & Upcoming Plans

End of November means that its time to welcome in the Christmas Marathon! Christmas movies have been fairly slim pickings but thanks to Netflix releasing an immense amount of Christmas movies (whether good or bad), there’s a little more selection. Hopefully enough to fill out these few weeks leading to Christmas. It should start tomorrow December 1st if all things go well.

A quick mention on December plans while we’re at it. I’m trying to work out all the backlog and releasing some more current release stuff, mostly TV (Netflix and Chinese Drama TV binges). I’m going to blend it all in this month while catching up with some 2020 TV series that I’ve missed or didn’t finish. Fingers crossed that I can work on as much as possible.

That’s it November Adventures!
Nothing too exciting and just a lot of spending overall.
What have you been up to?

Restaurant: Labothery (Brossard, Canada)

One of the new additions to Quartier Dix30 in the Square Dix30 area in Brossard is a new bubble tea joint called Labothery. The concept is to have a build your own bubble tea concept from base to taste combination to sugar level to the jellies/pearls/tapioca/etc.

Its been a while since the bubble tea concept has been around and to be fair, it hasn’t had a whole lot of gimmick surrounding since the whole foreign thing might already be one. The chewy tapioca and the different jellies and now we even have pearls and such.

Because I’m silly, I forgot to take a picture so here’s a picture from my friend’s Instagram:

Its very much a lab concept there which is pretty nice and a lot of fun to just discuss what to put together and see what works. My friend used the more oriental flavors of kumquat and winter melon which I don’t think would have been as bad if he didn’t mix with other flavor palettes for the pearls and such.

We both took the Ice Tea variety. They also have a milk tea variety which is the powder that you choose and for the other types, you get to choose sugar level but for the iced tea, they say that the sugar level should already be enough. I’m assuming that means that the tea is already sweetened. I’ll discuss that a little later.

Here’s what I ended up choosing to put in my drink.

Labothery Dix30

My iced tea base was green tea with flavors of kumquat and mango. For the pearls, I added in mango pearls and honey pearls. Mine turned out to be pretty good since I kept it fairly basic and didn’t get too experimental. However, my honey pearls did end up adding quite a sweet punch to it, making me think about whether the tea was sweetened already. I’m not quite sure about that. Point is, it did work pretty well. Plus the other choices were decent with tapioca as an obvious choice as well as aloe and all kinds of other pearls and jellies to choose from.

Labothery Dix30

Overall, Labothery is a pretty cool concept. As with anything with a concept and customizable, it tends to increase the price. It was around $6.50 for my drink, I think. I haven’t had bubble tea in a while, mind you, so I’m not sure what the current pricing for it is. The pros and cons of this concept is obviously, that you can be as creative as you’d like to be with the flavor combinations but the cons is that the result will never be certain. However, it is a surprise element and essentially you suffer your own consequences. In my case, it turned out pretty well as for my friend, it was more an acquired taste that he grew to like more halfway through.

Restaurant: Brasserie T! (Brossard, Canada)

Its been a crazy restaurant phase lately. Unexpected to say the very least! Next up is a relatively new restaurant in Quartier Dix30 in Brossard, which is in the south shore of Montreal. Its an outdoor complex with a wide selection of many different types of stores, restaurants and entertainment.

Brasserie T! has its first restaurant in the Quartier des Spectacles area which is right next to Place des Arts in downtown Montreal. I’ve never been to that location before which is something on my to do list however, I had heard that the Brasserie T! at Quartier Dix30 was open and that it was pretty good that I decided to go there to check it out.

While my post here is going to be fairly short with only the little bit that I tried out, you can find the menu on their website HERE.

Brasserie T! Quartier Dix30

Brasserie T! Quartier Dix30 is location in the Hotel Alt! in the Square Dix30 area. Its location is pretty nice with underground parking and side lots all around it. The interior decor is classy and nice but still has the casual feeling of a brasserie. The waitress that we got was also very friendly and accommodating. She jot down my allergies and made sure to double check on the questions I had related to make sure that I could have which food with no issues. When we asked about wines, she also made her suggestions but also went to ask the more experienced staff to make sure it was a good selection.

I went with someone who had been to the Brasserie T before and therefore, we were aware to ask for the specials which were not written on the menu. If you do go, that is very important to ask because the special menu is done with the vegetables and meats that they have fresh that week (or whichever duration the special lasts because I’m not sure and didn’t ask). There are usually some entree item and then one or two main meals, I believe.

Main Meal

brasserie t

Crab Roll

If you like seafood, rolls are a really refreshing summer meal. Usually we see these in lobster variety. Its nice that Brasserie T! swapped it up and used crab as the star of their roll. This roll was very refreshing mostly because there was a good amount of crab and a very nice crunchy coleslaw to go with it. It was also done well because it had a good balance of mayonnaise as well.

DESSERT

BRASSERIE T QUARTIER DIX30

For dessert, they have a pretty nice selection. However, as usual, there wasn’t anything else that I could have so I chose to have a sorbet. You could choose to have one or two scoops. Their flavor also changes to what they have available. The one that we got was for strawberry sorbet. I’ve never had strawberry sorbet (usually its more raspberry and such) so its a really nice one to try out.

OVERALL, Brasserie T Quartier Dix30 is pretty nice. The ambiance is nice. The interior decor is very elegant. The service was also really good and knowledgeable. The food was pretty decent as well. I’d be interested to go back and try out some of the stuff on their normal menu as well as see what else they come up for specials as the season as warmer and the produce changes.

Restaurant: Brasserie Elements (Brossard, Canada)

Next up in the food adventures is a long-awaited Friday date night at a restaurant that we’ve been thinking of checking out for a while which has been only opened in the last few years called Brasserie Elements.

Brasserie Elements is for 18 and over as it is focused on its beers and cocktails while it has quite a limited but interesting menu also. You need to be aware of which days the kitchen closes at what time.

Elements Menu

I apologize that the menu is only in French but just to show you the limited choices. You can find the menu on their website. Either way, its to get an idea.

Let’s check out what we got!

Drinks

Elements Blonde Beer

Avril Sour

Avril Sour

When you go to a brasserie, it wouldn’t be right to not order some kind of drink. The husband likes beers to went ahead to try their house brew blonde beer. I had a sip (because I’m not a huge beer fan) and thought it was pretty decent. Its smooth and pretty good. I had a few items on the cocktail list that I was interested in but essentially got sold on the Avril Sour which is like an Amaretto Sour except it uses a Quebec-made almond-nut liqueur. its small and delicate and tastes really good. With any sours, its always good to keep them well-portioned mostly because its pretty acidic and sometimes the different liqueurs can be too much when the quantity is too much, which is why I’m pretty happy with their flavors, the balance and the size of the drink.

Appetizer

Smoked BBQ Chicken Wings

Smoked BBQ Chicken Wings with peanuts and green onions

There were two things that caught my eye in the menu right from the get-go and one of those were this Smoked BBQ chicken wings with peanuts and green onions. They tasted really good. On top of that, I like the concept that they really promote the whole finger food thing so yeah, its casual and fun because there is no elegant way to eat wings without wasting a ton of meat. At least I’m not skilled that way.

Main Meal

Burger Elements

Burger Elements

The husband had the Burger Elements which has roasted shishitos, crispy shallots, cheese sauce infused with beer (not sure how to translate that). He really enjoyed it a lot but there was something in it that we couldn’t quite pinpoint.

Pulled Pork Sandwich

Pulled Pork Sandwich

I’m a huge fan of pulled pork sandwiches so chances are if they have that as an option, I’m going to choose it. This one had a lot of stuff in it or just very leaky coleslaw along with a good amount of pulled pork and with smoked BBQ sauce. It tasted absolutely fantastic even if it was a completely messy experience. I do say that the coleslaw was a bit too generous which made me not be able to finish up the also very generous portion of fries which was comparable to a mountain.

Overall

Brasserie Elements is a pretty nice place. Its laid back and casual which works very well with the menu it gives and all the kinds of beers that you can try. There’s a good selection of beers from all over and very unique ones that you probably won’t find everywhere. Other than that, the food menu is also pretty good with appetizers, main meals as well as desserts. For a brasserie, they had pretty decent service as the waitress is very attentive to make sure that we were satisfied with our food and drinks and anything else that we needed. However, with a brasserie experience comes a bit more of a noisier atmosphere. The music however was really good, at least to our tastes and the place was split a little bit more in half so the more drinking side definitely felt like they had more speakers than say the more restaurant side. Maybe it wasn’t deliberate but it definitely worked for the better for our preferences.

My “Weekly” Adventures: Fantasia and More Events

Are you ready? This past month was so busy that I’m still trying to get grips and find back all the energy. Its why well…a lot of things have been behind. The one thing that we haven’t left behind is the heat wave because its still as present as ever. Not really a bad thing because I can now have time to go back into the pool once I catch up a little more. This post might be a little heavier on the Instagram since its easier to do that than to just keep uploading photos. Its going to be heavy on pictures on the things that happened. To be honest, Fantasia took up most of my life so not all that much happened.

Let’s just jump right in!

Fantasia Festival

Boy was this a festival and a half this year. I pushed really hard and covered 5 more movies than I normally would. Of course, I had work because if I didn’t, I would be at the screening rooms and covering even more. However, this year was a really nice selection of films. Most of the films delivered fairly well. There were some odds and ends that didn’t quite land as well for myself. I probably will still do some sort of Fantasia wrap-up within the next week. Its a little after the event but I still would like to highlight some of the films.

As for my Instagram game, I even impressed myself when I went to do some press work and took pictures of the directors and cast and such whenever they were present.

So yeah…A lot of fun times here. I didn’t take any pictures with the cast and crew although you could, except for the director of Big Brother but then my shyness came out since I’m really a behind the scenes person (except when I do Game Warp, I guess). That picture is just for myself since I looked like an elephant. The roster of lists from when I posted the Weekly Adventures a month ago definitely did end up changing a little since I ended up missing a few other films but adding in some other titles.

You can find all the reviews now. The full roster of films: A Rough Draft, Big Brother, Bleach, Cam, Fireworks, Knuckleball, Laplace’s Witch, Lifechanger, Nightmare Cinema, The Nightshifter, Our House, The Outlaws, Playing Hard, Pledge, Rondo, Searching, Tigers Are Not Afraid, Under the Silver Lake, The Vanished, The Witch in the Window.

Wedding in Toronto

Wedding

One of my best friends had her wedding in Toronto. It  was absolutely lovely despite the heat with both the church and the dinner reception. These moments also have the time to see everyone dressed at their best and partying together and wishing happiness for our dear friend as well. It was a great time. Of course, it helps that my husband also was able to be there. I talk about that a lot but thats because my husband used to work the graveyard shift so now its always grateful to have this new shift where he can live normal human hours and do things and attend events.

Some people take for granted how amazing it is to spend time with the ones we love but sometimes different situations make it hard but hey, you work through it and it all comes together in the end. Rambling again…

Brossard Festin Culturel

Mon Ami Restaurant – Korean Food

Street Monkeys – Cambodia Food

Mucho Burrito – Mexican Food

Every year, the last weekend is always a busy one. We would hit two festivals. This year, we decided to not head out to the Matsuri Festival. A few key reasons is honestly the crowds and the parking and the traffic going out since road works are ridiculous right now. So, we went to check out earlier the Brossard Festin Culturel  which is a cultural festival in the Montreal suburbs. Its primarily a family event and this year, it moved locations so we wanted to see how it all went down and actually this new location works really well, even better than before. We tried out some cool restaurants also and enjoyed the sun a little and walked around. Fun times!

 

Matinee Movie Date

I feel like every time that I tell you all about going to the theatre it will be for some popcorn flick where its not outstanding terms like Oscar films but just a pure entertaining film. Most of the films that I look forward to and will watch in theatres (aside Fantasia) is honestly films that I feel the big screen will make a difference. Just to be clear, my suburban theatre only offered UltraAVX and 3D had more choice in times than the normal which had one showing only. Either way, I don’t really regret it at all. The experience for The Meg was quite unique since I honestly really got into the film and had some moments where I literally was startled and jumped back in the seat. Its a pretty awesome shark film experience. I know this movie has its issues. Either way, my review will be going up. In the meantime, we did a Movies and Tea After Hours kickoff show reviewing The Meg that literally just went live today.

I’ll still reblog the post tomorrow or something but just to have a fun listen!

Tranquil Dreams on Facebook

In case you missed the announcement post a few weeks ago, we are officially on Facebook! It was meant to happen eventually but you know circumstances changed  for Facebook linking here so I got that set up quickly. Head over and give us a like or follow! I’ll share random stuff there every once in a while so it’ll be a fun time. Check it out HERE.

That’s it for this adventures! 🙂
Things are getting back on track. Hopefully summer has been treating you all fantastic!

Janvier A La Carte Dix30: Houston Avenue Bar & Grill

Thanks so much to my awesome friend Starry Traveler who told me about this event and rounded up her family for a hangout and discovering food.  They are still one of the best foodie events companions.

We’ve been to MTL a Table two times together and now we’re venturing to check out this new event at Quartier Dix30.  There was about 10 restaurants to choose from in this complex.  Its a pretty scattered district.

Houston Avenue Bar & Grill

Houston is right at the intersection of the busy area so you can’t miss it. I love bar and grill restaurants.  Houston does have a pretty classy atmosphere and the decor is mostly smooth unless you are facing the red tinted transparent panels which my husband was, and he thought it was a pretty aggressive choice of color and decor.

The four of us managed to cover the menu pretty much and try the three menus at each of their prices.  Starters and desserts are the same for each meal so I’ll only put the price tag next to the main dish so you can get an idea.

Drinks

Houston Avenue Bar & Grill

Bloody Caesar & Raspberry Mojito

Peach Sangria

Peach Sangria

Starter: Soup of the Day
(no one took the salad)

Houston Avenue Bar & Grill

Main Dish

8oz. Filet Mignon Burger, with foie gras mayonnaise and fries ($20)

Houston Avenue Bar & Grill

Tartare Trio ($30)
4oz Tuna with Wafu Sauce, 4oz Salmon with citrus sauce, 4oz filet mignon dijon sauce with fries and salad

Houston Avenue Bar & Grill

Surf ‘N Turf ($40)
5oz filet mignon, 3 shrimps and brie cheese, served with mashed potatoes, vegetables and red wine sauce

Houston Avenue Bar & Grill

Dessert

Houston Avenue Bar & Grill

Profiterole stuffed with Ice Cream

Houston Avenue Bar & Grill

Wild Berry Crumble
(alternative from the regular menu due to lactose-intolerance)

Overall…it isn’t the first time that I’ve been to Houston and its well-ranged diverse menu options for this event was what intrigued me.  Houston makes some rather decent drinks, depending on the choice. The Raspberry Mojito is pretty good and I believe my husband liked the Bloody Caesar (but then he usually does). Another thing that made this meal really great was the fact that on some really great timing, the soup of the day was beef and vegetables and not some creamy soup.  It was really good.  There was some spice in there that I couldn’t figure out but gave it such a delightful taste. Plus, soup on a cold day is so much more enjoyable. As for the main course, I had the burger and it was good.  I’m not a burger fan but the filet mignon was really great and the one worry was that the foie gras mayonnaise would be too much and it wasn’t. My husband had the Surf ‘N Turf and he really liked it.  The brie cheese worked well with the filet mignon and the shrimps were done really good.

Going on to the desserts, they were able to accommodate my allergies and let me choose from two lactose-free options and I decided on the Wild Berries Crumble. I have to say that it was a little on the sweet side and it was probably because of the maple syrup drizzled over it. Apparently, the profiteroles with the ice cream instead of whipped cream was a really nice twist and everyone seemed to enjoy it quite a bit.

Houston is a good place to eat.  Its never exactly my first choice but on events like this, trying these new dishes really gave it a nice little twist and an opportunity to give something more unique a try.  It was a decent experience!

Restaurant: Jack Saloon at Quartier Dix30, Brossard, Quebec – Take 2!

Its rare we go to the same restaurants two weeks in a row.  Its rare we go out two weeks in a row while I’m talking about that. But, this week is my birthday weekend and my best friend and her boyfriend had asked to meet up for a dinner double date to celebrate together. After having a rather hard time deciding where to go, my boyfriend suggested a second visit to Jack Saloon’s, especially since we couldn’t try out the burgers last time because of the Groupon deal, this time we could give it a shot 🙂

Let’s look at what this time’s foodie adventures brought for us!

We decided to live on the wild side and my best friend suggested a round of shots on her so I suggested that these shots called Revolver looked the best with a mix of Jack Daniel’s and Apricot brandy.

Jack Saloon Dix30

Shots: Revolver

I personally love apricot brandy so these shots were really good.  Maybe not such a great idea to do a shot on an empty stomach but we all were laughing and joking around, especially since the guys each took a pint of beer which was on special at $5 and us girls took a Smirnoff Ice.

Dinner came relatively soon after.  The deal was on 4 selected burgers.  While the others took those choices, I broke out of the pack and had a massive craving for a pulled pork sandwich and those scrumptious onion rings from the week before. They were calling out to me…

Jack Saloon Dix30

Pulled Pork Sandwich with sides of onion rings

Our sides out swapped so we did the change ourselves afterwards.  You aren’t seeing things, those are actually fries 😉

The pulled pork sandwich was really delicious.  It was cooked right to perfection and it was perfectly spiced and whatever sauce they had on there was mouthwatering.  If you can believe it, this time the onion rings were even better.

Maybe being with good company makes things even better than they already are 🙂

Jack Saloon Dix30

Jack Saloon Cheeseburger with a side of trio fries

The two guys took the Jack Saloon Cheeseburger.  This is my boyfriend’s “plate”.  He has a soft spot for fries so he tries out these amalgamation of fries (I think that’s the word they used in the menu) for combining three sorts of fries: sweet potato, normal and something else that I can’t remember.

From his reaction and lack of talking, I think he was enjoying his burger 😉

Jack Saloon Dix30

Australian-Mediterranean Burger

Next, my best friend chose the Australian-Mediterranean Burger at least I think that’s the name of the burger.  It was like a mountain of veggies full of beets, lettuce, tomato and a double patty hidden under all this.  It took her a while to get through it but she seemed to enjoy it as well.

Jack Saloon is definitely a worthy place for a second visit.  The music is something that I’m not sure I mentioned but some quality stuff there.  There’s a lot of throwback music style and I love that! Its a nice place to hang out with friends and get some decent drinks.  My boyfriend said the beer he had was to his taste although it might be a little light for beer connoisseurs (which he isn’t).

On that note, great company, delicious food, an awesome shot and Smirnoff Ice made this birthday celebration a fun fun event.  Like I said in my vlog, I can’t think of a better way to turn 29.  2015 has really been treating me extra well! 🙂

What do you think? Do you like beer and burgers? What sort do you prefer?

 

Restaurant: Jack Saloon at Quartier Dix 30, Brossard, Quebec!

Its been a good few months that I’ve posted anything on going out to restaurants.

A few months ago, I found a pretty good deal on Groupon for Jack Saloon in Quartier Dix30 in Brossard.  Its been a place I’ve been wanting to go check out with my boyfriend.

Situated down the main strip of Quarter Dix30, Jack Saloon has a great location where there’s accessible underground parking.  When you first enter Jack Saloon, the one thing you will not miss is its beautiful decor creating a very stylish ambiance.

Jack Saloon Dix30

We went for a 5pm reservation and outside was still bright but the copper counters of the bar situated in the middle and the racing and older style pictures dangling above it match the vibe they want to give.  The walls are lined with animal skulls and there are some classic lamp shades to match the lights decorating different corners.

We started off the evening with some cocktails.

Jack Saloon Dix30

Bloody Caesar a la Course

Jack Saloon Dix30

Mojito a la Mangue (Mango Mojito)

My boyfriend took the Bloody Caesar.  Its his thing.  He orders that everything.  Jack Saloon’s adds a little spicy twist to it with a few extra ingredients.  My boyfriend said that it tasted pretty good but the taste was definitely stronger than normal. I had the Mango Mojito.  I’ve turned into quite a mojito lover and I adore mango so this combination worked for me.  I can’t say I’m extremely wowed by it but it was quite delicious 🙂 Mango is a tricky fruit for cocktails in general, I believe (or maybe I’m just a little picky).

Moving along, Sundays at Jack Saloon’s meant that there was $10 on selected burgers which we could not take because it would render our Groupon useless and we’d have to use it another time.  We ended up both picking something else on the menu and I took the half rack of ribs while my boyfriend took a full rack with a side of onion rings.

Jack Saloon Dix30

Half Rack of BBQ Ribs

Jack Saloon Dix30

Accompaniment: Onion Rings

Jack Saloon Dix30

Closer look at onion rings: Its drenched in Honey!!!

I love ribs, oh do I love them? The choice for me was relatively easy, although I equally love pulled pork sandwiches as well.  There’s a ton of stuff to try here.  It sucks that I’m lactose intolerant or I’d have tried the Chicken ‘n Waffles which they also have here.  Anyways, we both had the ribs and the very nice waiter told us that because its done on the smokehouse at the actual restaurant, its going to be drier than the normal ribs that we have elsewhere.  We both were cool with that.

The ribs were spiced differently from other places and honestly, it may look dry but the taste was really awesome.  I’m glad I took the half rack because I don’t deal too well with spices (completely my own digestive issues) and this was just enough to satisfy my appetite and still be happy.

The onion rings were the star here.  I didn’t realize it was drenched in honey until I took my first bite.  The onions were cut large and usually I don’t like that but with the honey and the delicious crust, it just melted in my mouth.  It was so awesome and heavenly! 🙂 I took the second picture so that you could see the honey while the first one is the portion size of the accompaniment.

Jack Saloon’s is a pretty cool place to go.  The prices are a little higher than average and they may not have a huge selection on their 2 page menu but every choice is unique and original and they add their own little flair to it.  The ambiance and decor is extremely stylish and comfortable and well, the food was satisfying and delicious.  Oh, and the service was also very good.  We had a friendly waiter and that makes the experience every bit more pleasant.

Matsuri Japan Festival & Brossard Cultural Fest 2013

Saturday was a crazy day! My friend and I had planned to go to 2 festivals in one day. Its both in the Montreal and surround areas so it wasn’t completely not doable.  His advice to me was to eat a light breakfast and get ready to eat lots of food for the rest of the day! I’ve never been to either of the festivals so lets check it out!

First stop was the further one and it also started earlier and it was Matsuri Japan Festival!  There was A LOT of people! I’m not even kidding…this is what it looked like when I got there.

Matsuri Japon 2013

Crowds at Matsuri!

Consider me traumatized, ok? This whole hermit thing was working so well…Anyways, the first place I was even too scared to order.  By the way, all the food bought was split between my friend and I to maximize the variety of food we could eat! First up, we went to get some Udon (aka Japanese Noodles)!

Matsuri Japon 2013

Udon

Then we headed off to our friend’s stand for Takoyaki! I’ve never tried it before actually so its my first time.  Look at the man power there!

Matsuri Japon 2013

My friend’s Takoyaki stand

Then the final product!

Matsuri Japon 2013

Takoyaki

It was so delicious! I’ve definitely been missing out with all the crazy busy schedule at work 🙂 Love takoyaki!

Next we went to get some J-Dogs because I love hot dogs so why not try them Japanese style, right? Who knew we had to line up to wait for our order. Look at this…*gasp*

Ordered and had to lineup to get our order of J-Dog

Ordered and had to lineup to get our order of J-Dog

In the meantime, my friend ran off to get us some Imadake!

Matsuri Japon 2013

Imadake

This is all new food to me.  My extent of Japanese is Soba, Sushi, Handrolls, Sashimi and Udon.  This was really good.  Just the portion was way huge.  I almost couldn’t eat my half of the J-Dog afterwards.  Oh wait, here is the long anticipated J-Dog.

Matsuri Japon 2013

J-Dog

They also had the choice of Wasabi-Mayo flavor but I don’t do spicy stuff so I took this 🙂

Right after that, we were just in time to see the Taiko performance.  First was with the singles, then doubles then we get the big drums

Matsuri Japon 2013

Taiko performance starts

Matsuri Japon 2013

Matsuri Japon 2013

Two people to a drum

Matsuri Japon 2013

Giant drums

They had some crafts area and kids area.  There I found origami of the Chinese Zodiac and the best was this origami of a dragon!

Matsuri Japon 2013

Dragon origami

By that time, we had already been there for about 2 hours and we were ready to head back to our area to check out the Brossard Cultural Festival! This year, they have a bank as a sponsor so they made it huge.  We just never anticipated how huge it was.  My friend said that the crowd had at least doubled from last year.  It was crazy lineups for some places and by the time we got there, some stalls had already sold out. Mostly eating here so we started with a Jamaican restaurant’s Poulet Jerk which is Jerk Chicken/Chicken Jerky? I don’t know what you call it, but it looks like this!

Poulet Jerk

Poulet Jerk

Then we went to the quick and fast one to get ourselves some Quebec delicacy of Turkey drumsticks.  Sharing this one was way hard!

Turkey drumsticks

Turkey drumsticks

We were also lining up at the Venezuelan restaurant and by the time we reached the stall, they had only two things left.  My friend took the Poutine Latino.  For those who don’t know what poutine is, it is a french fries, gravy and cheese Quebec meal just this time it was make Latino way.

Poutine Latino

Poutine Latino

My friend said it was really good.  I don’t eat poutine anymore but it does look quite good. As for me, I took the other dish they had, Rice with shredded beef. That was really good  🙂

Rice with shredded beef

Rice with shredded beef

That I ate by myself. After that, my friend’s had met some of his friends there and we went to watch the kids play on the little games there.

What do you call those games? I only know it in french.

What do you call those games? I only know it in french.

They also have fireworks later on at night but I was totally exhausted.  It was super fun though.  I ate lots of good food, saw some friends and watched nice performances.  It was definitely an amazing day! 🙂

How was your weekend? Do you like to try new foods and explore other cultures?

Phoneography Challenge: My Neighborhood

*If you saw another post (for those who have it to their emails) earlier today, I apologize because I was testing out the post by email and there were some technical difficulties 🙂 Hopefully this one gets published again and everything will work out alright!*

The first official phoneography challenge kicks off with the awesome theme of my neighborhood. This morning, in the not so little suburbs of Brossard where I live, about 15 mins from Montreal island by car, it was beautiful. I think it was like 5-8 degrees Celsius. Making it a gorgeous day to run some errands and then after that, I came back and went out for an afternoon stroll for this challenge. By the time, my boyfriend gets off work, I’m not sure if the sun would still be there. Here I am dressed up in my lighter coat, my bag and my tablet and we’re out!

phoneography geared up

Now lets be on our way to check out my little neighborhood!

I took a walk out of my street onto a bigger street where there is a forest that lines the autoroute in the back. There is also a little section for a park where my mom does her morning exercise with her friends, like Tai Chi. That sort of thing. They have been doing it for like 15 years together..some stay and some move away but they always go to hang out, exercise and chat in the morning. Its pretty cool. Right along this forest is the bike path, as you go along it, its been made nicer to have little pretty lamp posts and then an open area for the bike path stretches throughout Brossard. I usually take my bike in the summer to bike out to downtown too. Man, now I missing summer..lets hope it gets here soon. I’m due to start biking in April once my workout buddy starts training for the marathon 🙂

Here is my quick snapshots of my neighborhood. If you would like to join this challenge, head over HERE!

Hope everyone is enjoying their weekend so far!