May 5, 2015

This Is It

We are saying goodbye...

Well kind of.

My focus has shifted a lot since I graduated and not being able to write some of the stuff I wanted to hurt my ambition to keep at writing for the blog. With that being said I am "retiring" from the blogging thing for now.

I'm still going to keep the domain and likely post the odd thing. I have about 8 unfinished posts about cooking, my favourite podcasts, and running a podcast, but until I can figure stuff out I'm just going to walk away.

The Pub Chat posts will also stop, but the podcast will not. You can find all that on our website

I really want to focus more on creative writing, which maybe will find its way on here. Plus you can always find me on Twitter, Instagram, and all those other social media platforms I use a sometimes.

Until you hear from me next though, thank you very much for reading. It has been a fun ride.

March 16, 2015

Winnipeg For Lunch - Fergies Fish 'n Chips

The best fish 'n chips in Winnipeg

If you aren't from Winnipeg and ever are in town, I highly recommend stopping in at The Forks. Not only do they have lots of shops you can peruse but they also have a ton of great little restaurants to eat at. One of my favourites is Fergies Fish 'n Chips. And if you are from Winnipeg and have never eaten at Fergies, well shame on you.

There may be two dozen (possibly more) places to eat food at The Forks, yet I have fallen into a routine eating regularly at a few places. One of those places is Fergies, which has been open in The Forks since 2004.

Usually if I am at The Forks specifically for lunch it is my go to choice.

Classic fish and chips are great, especially when done so well. Fergies definitely hits the bullseye with their fried fish. Your choice of fish is pickerel, cod, or halibut. The halibut will cost you a bit more, and it is tasty, but I almost always settle on the pickerel.

The snack size is perfect for lunch, at $5.49 for one piece of cod or pickerel ($8.93 for halibut) and small fries. For bigger eaters the regular size comes with two pieces of fish and regular fries for $8.70 ($15.49 for halibut). The hearty size, which is three pieces of fish and large fries goes for $12.41 ($22.98 for halibut) and is great for sharing with friends.

You can delve into the meals too if you are a bit hungrier, a single meal has one piece of fish and regular chips, but also comes with seafood chowder for $9.95 ($11.96 for halibut). The double meal is $12.25 ($18.49 for halibut) and has two pieces of fish and large chips along with the seafood chowder, which they make fresh every day.

I ordered my usual snack size pickerel. It took eight minutes from me ordering, him dropping the fish and chips into the fryer, packaging it, and then calling my number. Of course the speed is great when nobody ahead of you, which was my luck this day. If you're in a rush, just one or two people ahead of you in line will cost you some time, so keep that in mind when coming here. Usually if I am in somewhat of a hurry I avoid Fergies if the line has four or more people in it.

The fish and chips is served like it would be across the pond, in a newspaper, with tartar and a lemon slice. It is a fake newspaper, Fergies Daily, which I'm assuming is 100% hygienic greaseproof paper and just emulates a newspaper. The "newspaper" is basically just an advertisement for Fergies and The Forks.

The fish is moist and tender but has a nice crispy crust on the outside that isn't too thick. It really is the right amount of batter. If I were to nitpick here I would say the batter could use a bit more salt (or spices) to it, but that would be me really looking for something I'd change in the dish. The fries are also great, crispy, and well salted. Fergies uses a "unique double frying technique" according to their website.

If you want to stop here and don't want fish you are out of luck... unless you want to eat deep fried mars bar or deep fried cheese cake for lunch. 

There is also a curry fish poutine on the menu, $6.88, which has always intrigued me but I have never tried it. For those that just want the fish and no fries, you can also just order that.

This is definitely a highly recommended stop by me. For lunch or dinner, or just a snack while walking around The Forks.

Taste: 8/10
Speed: 5/5
Price: 4/5
Overall: 17/20

Fergies Fish 'n Chips
142 - One Forks Market Road
Winnipeg, Manitoba R3C 4L9
(204) 942-9444

March 12, 2015

Pub Chat: Episode 85 - Rogue Chocolate Stout & House of Cards

Binge watched the new seasons to talk about it

Joey Heflich joins us this week to talk all about House of Cards Season 3 and he only has one thing he wants to tell you about it: America Works sucks. We’re drinking the delightful Rogue’s Chocolate Stout.

SPOILER ALERT: This episode contains all the spoilers.

Download here. Or subscribe in iTunes here.

Show Notes
00:00 – Introduction
01:25 – Rogue Chocolate Stout
04:00 – Tasting notes
06:30 – House of Cards: spoiler alert!
08:25 – Overall impressions of season 3
24:45 – America Works
33:45 – Devil’s advocate on America Works
36:50 – Doug
44:05 – HOC manipulates who you root for
46:45 – Looking forward
48:50 – Claire gets sick and makes eggs
52:00 – Wrapping it up

March 5, 2015

Pub Chat: Episode 84 - Oh Doughnuts and The Dogfather Imperial Stout

Mmmmm doughnuts

This week we’re chatting to Amanda, founder of Oh Doughnuts in Winnipeg. She makes delicious handmade doughnuts for daily delivery to local coffee shops. Amanda joined us to talk all about doughnuts, and drink some bourbon barrel-aged Dogfather Imperial Stout from Laughing Dog Brewing.

Download here. Or subscribe in iTunes here.

Show Notes

00:00 – Introduction
00:50 – Vegan doughnuts
02:15 – Laughing Dog The Dogfather Imperial Stout (Bourbon Barrel)
06:10 – Life of a doughnut maker
10:20 – Oh Doughnuts favourites
11:40 – Getting into doughnut making
13:30 – Why we love doughnuts
14:50 – Doughnuts in other cities
17:50 – Doughnut temperature
19:30 – Donut versus doughnut
21:30 – Creating the doughnut
25:20 – Value of doughnuts
29:25 – National doughnut day
31:30 – Marmite doughnut and other requests
33:50 – Fried versus baked doughnuts
38:10 – Bronuts and naming Oh Doughnuts
44:30 – Doughnuts as a trend and a business
51:30 – Wrapping it up

February 26, 2015

Pub Chat: Three Year Anniversary Special - Burly Wine 3 Year Vertical

It's been 3 years?

Today we’re celebrating the three year anniversary of Pub Chat. To be honest, I don’t think either of us thought we’d make it this far. To celebrate, we’re doing a vertical tasting of Half Pints Burly Wine. We’ve got 2008, 2009 and 2014 vintages on deck and the sexy intern is along for the ride.

We’re pleased to announce that starting today we’re going to release episodes every week! In addition to going weekly, we’re launch a new site and logo this weekend, so keep your eyes peeled. Finally, in addition to twitter, you can now find us on instagram at@PubChatPodcast!

Download here. Or subscribe in iTunes here.

Show Notes
00:00 – Introduction
01:30 – Half Pints Burlywine
10:30 – Aging and vertical tastings
15;15 – Adrian needs more glasses
16:30 – Pub Chat celebrates three years
19:00 – Pub Chat’s year in beer
21:30 – Pub Chat’s year in guests
29:30 – Pub Chat’s year in topics
35:30 – Future guests and announcements
42:20 – Promises broken, kept and made
45:30 – Wrapping it up

February 19, 2015

Pub Chat: Episode 83 - He’Brew Bittersweet Lenny’s R.I.P.A.

Homebrew talk

We’re drinking He’Brew Bittersweet Lenny’s R.I.P.A. from New York’s Schmaltz Brewing with local homebrewer Mark Mruss. Mark has been brewing beer for a few years, sometimes with a few more interesting ingredients.

Download here. Or subscribe in iTunes here.

Show Notes
00:00 – Introduction
00:30 – He’Brew Bittersweet Lenny’s R.I.P.A.
06:45 – Mark getting into homebrewing
14:15 – Higher ABV brews
17:25 – Mark’s homebrew highlights
20:45 – Half Pints Simcoe Spruce
22:30 – Beer ingredients regulations
23:40 – Anniversary beers and high ABV
27:25 – Stone opening a brewery in Germany
28:50 – Back to homebrewing
34:30 – Open fermentation and sour beers
37:05 – Europeans, washing and cheeses
38:40 – Mark finding time to brew
40:20 – The brewing process
47:40 – Wrapping it up

February 11, 2015

Winnipeg For Lunch - Famenas Famous Roti & Curry

Massive portion of roti

"It reeks of curry in here." - Sterling Archer.

He wasn't describing Famenas Famous Roti & Curry but if he was it would be accurate. It smelled like curry right when we walked in the door. Sorry I shouldn't say it smelled like curry, rather the smell of curry was wafted into my nostrils.

It was a small place. Underneath a parking garage. That smelled like curry. It was awesome.

Kevin and I sat down in front of the kitchen, which is the only counter. Famenas seats maybe 20 at a half circle counter. Behind the counter stand the team, of what I assume is, husband and wife.

They happily greeted us and were very attentive when we sat down. Kevin ordered chicken roti ($9.75). I ordered lamb roti ($11.99). They also have the prices after taxes on the menu too, which is helpful. You can also choose your roti to be filled with chickpeas or potato, or a mixture of both.

Ten minutes later we've got two giant roti's in front of us. And I do mean giant. It also came with a side of soup, which, as my friend put it "the only thing going for it is that it's kind of free." He was right, it was very average.

The lamb was really tender and the spices used were very nice. The mixture of chickpeas and potato was well balanced as well. I may have doused my roti in hot sauce, which is house made.

The house made hot sauce is also for sale. They've got hot sauce for $13 and sweet and sour for $15. You can also get dhalpuri shells for $30/dozen.

So much food. I was in a roti coma while the owner gladly told us stories. If roti isn't your thing they also have curries and jerk chicken. Your lunch will likely be just over $10 but can be higher depending on what you order.

Their website has their hours from 4:30-8:30 (7:30 on some nights) but they were definitely open for lunch at 1:00 when we went. So I'm honestly not sure on their normal hours. Urbanspoon says they open at 11:00am though.

Taste: 7/10
Speed: 3/5
Price: 2/5
Overall: 12/20

Famenas Famous Roti & Curry
295 Garry St,
Winnipeg, MB R3C 1H9
(204) 414-9040