Chic atmosphere, fine food, fab service, and beverages the entice the taste buds to wake up. That is exactly what you will find at Calgary’s One18Empire, a whiskey inspired bar and restaurant. With a selection of over 100 whiskeys, you could spend plenty of time sipping your little heart out. I do enjoy sipping on a fine whiskey myself. The focal point of their local inspired fare is shareable plates. The whole concept really intrigued me, so I had to go and experience it for myself.
Located in the Marriot Hotel downtown, One18Empire’s ambiance is very inviting.
The name is derived from where it was located on the original historic Atlantic Avenue in the early 1900’s known then as the Grand Central Hotel. There was a time the hotel nearly blew up way back when an old miner shoveled dynamite in the furnace. They now have a drink named after the event called ‘Near Miss‘. A perfect place to unwind after work full of rich Calgary history.
Our server for the evening was Meredith, she was awesome from the get go. I was digging the uniforms which were that of workshop apparel too, and also the trays they use.
Very fashionable workshop apparel I might add.
We got right in there with some Bourbon to start things off. The Black Walnut Old Fashioned– their signature cocktail. Which also happens to be one of the worlds first written down recipes. I was instantly enamored by the large tennis size ball of ice in my glass. Not gonna lie, the ice sphere was pretty darn cool.
Apparently it is not just for show either. It also has a purpose as I was informed. The ice melts slowly because of its shape and size, so that it maintains your drink at the perfect temperature while very minimally changing the taste, so as to keep it good until the last drop. That it was!! Delicious. I could get used to sipping on that.
My tastebuds were awakened, and seeing as how One18Empire’s focus is on shareable plates, we dug right into a charcuterieboard. I do love a good charcuterie board, it is a common staple back in Spain, so it almost brought me back home to Mallorca for a moment. I was very impressed with their personal touches on the board consisting of house made marmalade, house made pickles, and house made mustard. Those details always make a difference.
Accompanied with that fine feast was the simple beet salad.
Don’t let the name fool you, that salad was not so simple, it was more like divine.
With a chilled bottle of Reisling on the go, and even though we were feeling quite stuffed from the first course, we still went on to tuck into a couple of mains. Seeing as how we were already in sharing mode, we thought it best to stay on that train and choose a main each for the both of us to try.
We decided on the Seared duck breast and the Alberta grass fed petite tender.
I would have to say my favorite of the two was the tenderloin, it was superb.
This was absolutely a divine experience, and we were provided with ample history of One18Empire by our knowledgeable and top notch server Meredith, her bubbly personality, and attentive service really made the experience a memorable one.
Unfortunately we didn’t do any whiskey sampling, or see the whole restaurant, but that is just more reason to go back sooner rather then later – and I absolutely will be going back for an extended experience. One18Empire, a historical sensory filled culinary journey not to be missed.
Classy dining around the globe is a hobby that I take very seriously. Enticing the palette with incredible and unique flavors and food pairings, all while surrounded in a comfortable chic atmosphere – is exactly what I am after when dining out. I am continually on the hunt to find the best and most amazing places to experience and share around the world. It’s an art that one can’t help but appreciate.
Here in the hub of the North – Hay River, NWT, there happens to be one of my absolute life long favorites. The Back Eddy. They always provide an unforgettable experience, and the dishes will never disappoint. Having been in business for over 40 years, it is clear there are many things being done right here.
The decor of The Back Eddy reflects a nautical theme, adorned with helms, and various pieces from ships.
Hay River has been a port for shipping and barging for many years, so it was very fitting for The Back Eddy to take on this theme. The name is derived from an ‘Eddy’, which is a whirl of water, and in this case, ‘Back Eddy’, intended to represent the whirl of water created by the back of the ship.
The original owner of The Back Eddy also created what’s called, Back Eddy Spice, which is still sprinkled in quite a few dishes on the menu to this day, as well as sold in many stores. It’s a Back Eddy staple. The Back Eddy has now been family run by some pretty phenomenal people for the last 16 years.
The atmosphere is inviting and very relaxing. Particularly now with all of their festive decorations making the place feel ‘oh so magical’.
Each month they feature different lunch and dinner specials, as well as a monthly dessert(made in house).
The majority of their dishes are all made from scratch in house and with plenty of love, so you are guaranteed to always have a fresh flavorful experience.
One of my absolute favorite dishes of theirs is the ceaser salad. Nothing fancy, but they make their own dressing, and it is sooo darn good. I can eat it every day. In fact, when I am home every year, I pretty much do eat it every day. I have yet to find another around the globe that compares.
This time around on our ladies of leisure dinner, rather then one of their tantalizing menu items, we were after one of their other classics. Hot Rocks.
Hot Rocks are just that, heated marble slabs, that you get to cook your own food on, right at your table.
It’s seriously a lot of delicious fun. They come out already nicely heated and then you place them on the flames to keep the sizzle going.
You have the choice between meat rocks, seafood rocks or a combo of both. We decided to go for the combo rocks which included, Lobster, Prawns, Chicken and Beef, along with plenty of various veggies.
The platter is very abundantly stocked, and has a fabulous array of house made butters and dips. So you absolutely will no be going home hungry – better bring those stretchy pants.
First thing was first though. I needed to prepare my palette by getting the vino flowing(lets not forget who we are talking about here). It’s simply the classy lady way to begin any culinary journey. For a small Northern establishment they do have quite a good little selection of Vino to choose from. I opted for a Rose, a nice inbetween of white and red.
With hot rocks, your act of having dinner truly turns into an experience. It so nice to share fabulous food, great chat, and good drinks all while being surrounded by an extremely comfortable environment. It’s the best way, and always creates it to be nothing less then memorable.
You won’t forget how full you were in the end either. Good thing the seats have wheels on them – in case you can’t get up and need to be wheeled out. Isn’t that a classy mental picture?!
The Back Eddy truly is a Northern Gem, and it only gets better with age. That’s right, just like a fine wine. If you find yourself in Northwest Territories, and particularly in the Hay River area, make sure you stop in and enjoy some Northern class and true North hospitality. Cheers to keeping the palette adventures going!
If you have been on an endless search for a serene mountain oasis, where you are surrounded by lush enchanting nature, in an ultra chic cabin on a hill with a view to boast about, and impeccable service by people whom genuinely love there job. Then I have found the place for you.
Made for heli-skiing in the winter and hiking adventures in the summer, not to mention the ideal location for weddings and events, or a relaxing, and rejuvenating get away.
Recently I had the pleasure of experiencing what its like to stay and be pampered at this gem.
From the minute I arrived I was already taken by it.
I received a very warm welcome by Becky whom is the manager, and has been with Heather Mountain Lodge for 6 years.
She provided me with a wealth of information about the Lodge and surrounding area, and got me all booked in for dinner. I was booked into the King cabin, which is one of the two newly built cabins on the hill above the lodge.
I didn’t know exactly what to expect, and was completely blown away by the ultra-chic cabin. It’s the perfect combination of luxury and nature.
Each cabin is equipped with in floor heating – which would be perfect on those chilly nights in the winter after an epic day of heli-skiing, a wood burning stove, king size bed, a very large bathroom with both a beautiful tub, and separate shower. I was loving the decor and amenities.
Although as soon as I pulled up to the cabin and seen the view I was in for, my soul was already feeling soothed. I zoned in on the little deck, and knew I was going to be spending some chill time basking in that view.
This trip was also serving as a reunion with my sister, so as I was taking in my surroundings, I was also impatiently awaiting her arrival.
Once she arrived, and we enjoyed some catching up on our little deck, it was hard to tear ourselves away from the cabin to go for dinner, but, we were about to be treated to a culinary experience that heightened all of our senses.
The patio where we chose to dine rather then in the dining room has picturesque views of the mountains and property. The property is conveniently located just off the highway, but when your immersed in Heather Mountain Lodge’s environment, you feel as though you are far away from the hustle and bustle of life.
Muzza was our server, and he was exceptional from the get go.
Full of personality, and he more then happy to recommend or describe anything about the menu, or even anything off the ‘hiking menu’ if you were already trying to figure out how you would wear off this fine food.
He is extremely knowledgeable about the area, and any hiking excursions you could want to take.
Our dinner experience began with cocktails(would you expect any less really), while we read through the menu trying to narrow it down to actual choices.
Everything sounded wonderful, so it was hard to choose. Although in the end we were so spoiled we were able to sample a variety of things.
We ended up starting with Caramelized Tomato & Juniper Soup
The flavor of the aromatic soup was enough to wake up our palettes immediately. That way they were on full form for what was next.
The Triple Creamed Brie.
Cheese is an addiction of mine, one that I don’t give into very often, usually only when I am out. So, clearly this was one of those occasions. Baked in phyllo pastry until molten, accompanied with pickled Okanagan peaches, apple mint jelly, reduced blueberry balsamic, and black pepper crackers. It was exactly as amazing as it sounds. When you dug a cracker into it, the perfectly backed brie, spilled out, begging to be enjoyed.
A glass of Pinot Noir was a must to compliment our mains. They have a very elaborate wine list to choose from. I was pleasantly surprised. My little wine loving heart could have been happy there for weeks with a list such as that.
For my main I went for the Alberta Rack of Lamb, served with fondant fingerling potatoes, grilled summer squash and roasted chipolini Jus.
My sister tucked into the BC Farmer’s Game Hen, which was slowly braised in white wine and herbs, accompanied with potato gnocchi, baby spinach, golden beets, toasted almonds with roasted garlic Gorgonzola Cream.
It’s not very often I can say that every dish I tried at a restaurant was amazing, but literally, everything was amazing. The love and passion that was put into creating these dishes was very apparent! We had the pleasure of meeting and getting to know the Chef, Josh Gaudet.
I was so impressed to learn that he creates all the menu items himself. Not only is he a fantastic person, but he really is very skilled at his craft. We enjoyed some very good chat throughout the evening with him.
We were absolutely out of room(where the heck did I put those sweat pants?!), but we couldn’t not try the amazing desserts created by their in house pastry chef, Ryan Doggart.
We went for the Rhubarb Crumble and Creme Brulee.
Both were absolutely divine, and tasted as fresh as you can get. It was obvious that Ryan also know’s his skill very well, and his passion shows in his creations.
This was a feast fit for a couple of queen’s, that’s a certainty.
Before we weren’t able to move anymore, we had to answer the beckoning’s from the hot tub and sauna. The hot tub is out doors but also enclosed, which is great, as I love having the best of both worlds. It was so relaxing.
Now being an avid sauna lover, and having grown up with one in my back yard – you could say I was very excited for that experience.
Let’s be real here though, I sipped on vino(personality in a bottle) for quite sometime before hand(obviously like a classy lady), I am pretty sure that the only thing detoxing out of this ladies pores was fine wine.
After an amazing afternoon/evening, the king size bed in the cabin swallowed me right up. I can’t even tell you how comfy that bed was, like probably the most comfy mattress ever! I didn’t want to leave it in the morning. I bet its even better in the winter. I could envision myself all wrapped up on those chilly winters nights on the mattress sent from mountain lodge heaven. Bliss!
Coffee on the little deck was the best way to get the day rolling the next morning.
Basking in the view and taking it all in. I could get used to that. I was contemplating just buying the cabin and becoming a permanent resident of the lodge. Alas, not this time around. That cabin was rocking our world, but at some point we had to head down for breakfast…..
Thank goodness we did! The beautiful breakfast surprise that awaited us, was nothing less then amazing.
Seeing as how we were fashionably late, they had so graciously set up a table for us on the patio(which we had all to ourselves), and Josh & Ryan, treated us to some more incredible culinary delights.
Seriously, however Josh cooked those eggs, I am telling you, for sure the best scrambled eggs I have ever had.
Between the view, and the spectacular breakfast it was hard for me to put my camera down and just enjoy the moment. This was something that had to be shared. Oh the life of a blogger. Before we continued on our adventures and ‘tore’ ourselves away from this amazing piece of heaven we had to take one last walk around the area to get the last feel for it all.
There is a very comfy little lounging area upstairs that is more so used in the winter.
But the property is pretty amazing in and of itself.
All I could think of was how badly I wanted to climb up to those mountain peaks. Being such a short and whirlwind trip this time, it only means that I have to return.
You can check out my Video Blog about the experience.
There are so many reasons that Heather Mountain Lodge is so special, but one of the main things that stand out is how the staff treat it as their own, and welcome people as if welcoming them into their own home. They love what they do, and they love the lodge, and it creates an environment that you feel warm, welcomed and pampered. I want to give huge thanks to the phenomenal people at Heather Mountain Lodge that made this such an unforgettable experience.
This lodge, is not a place to be missed if you find yourself in the area. Heck, even if you don’t find yourself in the area, plan a trip there. You will not soon regret it.
Adventure and fine dining. Two things that go together like me and wine. Meant to be. One of my absolute favorite destinations ever, is Golden, British Columbia. Literally, I just love that place. The energy there is fantastic – as well as the natural charm. With the green river flowing through it, the majestic mountains surrounding, and the small quaint size of it. I just cant get enough.
Golden has loads of activities on offer from, cycling, hiking, white water rafting, paragliding, and so on and so forth, I intend on spending quite a bit of time around there this summer. Endless excitement for my little adventure loving heart.
This time around, it was a weekend road trip with one of my long time gal pals.
Even though it was raining, it didn’t stop us. I am a damn trooper, it takes a lot more then that to stop this gal. There is nothing like hitting the open road, cranking your tunes, and laughing with one of your nearest and dearest. It’s always a nice change for myself as I do tend to do a sufficient amount of solo travel. It’s not my fault I like spontaneous adventures, and I don’t always have the time to wait for anyone else to join. Besides, ‘me time‘ rocks too!
Obviously aside from physical activities, Golden does offer a fine little culinary scene. One I also need to explore more of. I ever so graciously received a gift certificate from Tourism Golden for The Island Restaurant, an establishment in which I had not yet had the pleasure of being acquainted with. I love trying new things! Clearly. I think that goes without saying.
The Island Restaurant is a beautiful log building, and the location was prime with a patio that was over looking the river. It has such a warm and inviting atmosphere that draws you right in.
Mother nature decided to be a gem and hold up on the rain for us so we could enjoy the splendid patio ambiance.
Yes, I was already in my happy place with the way things were progressing – and it was about to get a whole lot happier when the vino started flowing. Anyone who know’s me, know’s that wine is a hobby of mine. It’s an art, one that I like to enjoy.
Before I decided on the bottle, we were offered a sample. A generous one at that. She said these two mixed together would taste the equivalent of Summers night. So off I went to experience it.
Wait it was a bit difficult, so I tried another route.
Yup, sold! Pretty darn delicious. Bring on the Summers Night.
Clearly I am a total class act, 100% of the time.
The service was top notch! Super charismatic, and above and beyond. Right from the get go.
We were having the best time ever. Having an awesome person taking care of you, always takes the experience way up as well!
Since you can’t live on Vino alone, it was time to begin our culinary journey.
I decided to try the Elk for my Entree. I like to keep things as local as possible no matter where in the world I am, so I figured you can’t get much more local then Elk. It was served as an Elk patty plated on top of rosti potatoes and roasted vegetables.
With a side of salad, and a pastry stuffed with cheese.
The Elk had a very interesting flavor to it. I mean the flavoring they added was great, but the meat itself has quite a different taste to me. I am not sure I would be ordering Elk myself again anytime soon. However, everything else I had was ridiculously good.
Natasha went for the Mozzarella & Grape Quasadilla.
She also loved hers, and couldn’t resist in finishing every last bit.
Clearly we had to top it off with dessert, and went for the Apple pie. Freshly baked and perfectly delicious. Party in my mouth. Ok, that was the wine.
I can tell you one thing, if you come hungry, you absolutely will not be leaving hungry. They take very good care of that. Perhaps I should have worn sweat pants…..
I was also treated to a tour by the chef. I always love a behind the scenes look at things. We even hung out with the owner for a bit.
The whole experience was so much fun, it was hard to leave. ‘No, I don’t want to go!’
Although I did leave in the end, and I know one thing for a fact, well two things actually. Firstly, I am going to be back in Golden in no time. Secondly, I will be visiting The Island Restaurant again. It has the view, the ambiance, the service, and the cuisine. Everything you could ever ask for in a culinary experience. When you wake up in the Golden area, don’t miss out on the chance to heighten all your senses.
We all know that I like a classy establishment where I can dress up and put on my heels, but I am a small town girl at heart, so sometimes I like those down to earth, home cooked flavors in a more rustic ambiance. I have driven by ‘The Corner House Cafe‘ many times and it always caught my eye – I knew I had to stop and check it out at some point.
Finally, long behold I was once again in the area visiting my family, and this time I made it a point to stop in! It had to happen. I am also the type of person that once I get something in my head, I will not be able to get it out of my head until I have tried it or done it. This situation was no different.
It has a charming, warm and inviting feel. There was just something about it. Clearly, otherwise it wouldn’t have been calling out to me for so long.
Upon entering I was pulled right in to the homey ambiance.
Not a bad view.
It’s family run, quaint, busy, and very friendly. Apparently from what I am told, they are always very busy, which doesn’t surprise me, I can absolutely see why.
It’s a great place, with great food. I was impressed with their little menu.
We were all in need of some grub at this point.
Being Sunday they were only offering breakfast, which really was not a problem for me as a Sunday Breakfast was exactly what I was after.
I was stoked to see that they made smoothies, and the smoothie of the day had loads of green ingredients in it, and for me the greener the better! So I was one happy patron.
I made sure to share it with my nephew, I do believe it’s never to young to prepare for a life of health and vitality.
Train those taste buds as soon as you freaken can!
All in all, it was a pretty awesome experience, and I was finally able to check it off my list(let’s not forget how important that is to me). I will say – if you ever find yourself in the Millarville area and happen to come across ‘The Corner House Cafe‘, pull on over and treat yourself! It was pleasantly surprising, and I will absolutely return to try out their lunch menu.
Keeping it random, local and classy every day of the week.
It was a ladies of leisure kind afternoon, and after driving around for sometime trying to make a decision, we ended up choosing to head into the Simmons building in East Village where we got all comfy in Char Bar.
It’s funny how there are so many fabulous restaurants that I want to try in the city, and for some reason when the time came to go out and dine somewhere – my mind went completely blank, and I couldn’t come to any sort of decision what-so-ever, nor could I even think of a name of an establishment that I wanted to visit.
Ahhh, where am I again?! Oh right! Calgary. The mind of a traveler. Although it was a last minute decision to head out, so we really didn’t put a game plan into action before hand. Had we have planned the lunch excursion the evening prior, I would have put some damn good thought into it. However that being said, spur of the moment spontaneity, does lead to some pretty favorable experiences. Not to mention, the ambiance in the Simmons Building is right up my alley. I love the fact that it’s a historic building that’s been restored, I am all about history, vintage, and recycling. The open concept of the Phil & Sebastian cafe, Sidewalk Citizen Bakery, and Char Bar that are inside, is also a winner. Three separate, local businesses, whom are like minded and working in union to create this wonderful culinary experience.
The feel when you walk into the Simmons building is warm, chic and inviting, with plenty of aromas to savor, from the fresh ground coffee, to bakery delights, onto the culinary creations.
Having spent the better of the last 5 years living on the island of Mallorca in Spain, and having that still as my home for half of every year, I have been quite spoiled with my luxury Mallorcan lifestyle and incredible dining experiences. So I suppose my bar is set pretty high. I myself very much enjoy atmosphere, setting the stage for my experience. Obviously having worked in the hospitality industry for many years, service is quite important to me as well. Natasha and myself got seated at the most perfect quaint little table, nicely tucked away, where we could have our photo shoot and laughs without being amidst loads of people. It was 2 in the afternoon as well, so there was not a massive crowd as it was.
Obviously first thing was first. Get on top of the vino situation. Yes, if you have followed my blog up until now, you know, I am a massive wine lover. Having traveled the world for 10 years and visited many vineyards around the globe, my palette is finely tuned and has a massive appreciation for fine wines.
I absolutely adore French rosé, particularly rosé from the Provence region – where they are famous for their rosé. Producing it from as early as 600bc, so you could say they have had some practice. This one was a nice combination of wild strawberry, red cherry and raspberry. It went down beautifully.
We had a very fantastic server, Tyson, whom was extremely knowledgeable and very happy to give us any and all recommendations on what to try.
We were interested in just a few small things to share, and so decided on the vegetable ceviche, pistachio and avocado bruschetta, plantain chips, and a small portion of regular fries.
Wait! Before you dig in, let’s not forget to place your napkin.
Being classy makes you cool – and so does sipping on fine wine in a classy establishment.
The vegetable ceviche was super flavorful, and well prepared, I enjoyed every bit of it. The pistachio and avocado bruschetta was made with a different take, but I am a massive avocado lover, so there is no way I won’t enjoy some avo. The chips and fries where exactly that, chips and fries – as you would expect them to be. It was all very tasty.
We were treated to some dessert which was super nice.
In which I washed down with a nice steaming almond milk cappuccino.
I was trying my darnedest to make the ol’ classic heart with my hands. For some reason though, I couldn’t quite do it. What the heck?! After struggling with it for a bit, I came to the conclusion that my hands just weren’t made to make a damn heart. Well I suppose my real heart is just big enough as it is.
Before our dining experience was concluded, we were also kindly offered to be taken on a tour of the building. To which we obviously accepted.
We were feeling very knowledgeable after that tour. It’s always so nice to see people whom truly enjoy and take pride in their job. Very impressive. What was also impressive is that Tyson proudly hand crafts all his own bow ties. That’s a good stitch if you ask me.
Having had such a fabulous experience for the second time around at Char Bar, you can guarantee that I will be back again in the very near future.
So, if you happen to be scratching your noggin trying to decide where to take yourself for your next culinary experience in Calgary, then make sure to head down to Char Bar, and make it a memorable culinary delight.
One thing to remember when embarking on a dinner mission in Spain – ‘Most restaurants don’t open before 8’. Freaken heck though, most westerner’s don’t like to eat after 8. It can be a tad bit of an adjustment. Seeing as how I am programmed to have dinner quite early in the evening, I always tend to forget this late dinner fact.
My friends and I had dinner plans, and we decided to just wing it – meet up, be spontaneous and just find a place. It just so happened to be about 6 pm, and the streets were quite and most restaurants chained up, dark and lifeless. Yes it was way to darn early. ‘Dang’ we thought, where the heck are we gonna get some chow?!’
Long behold, we came across ‘La Cueva’. With 20 people standing outside(well maybe 10, but in dead streets it looked like 20) we figured there was a good chance it was open. We took a peak inside – and damn straight, it was OPEN! Score! We were in there like flint.
Not before having a photo shoot in front of the door.
From the entrance we had to go down a few stairs(I know from the previous photo you would assume up, BUT, it was down), and enter into the restaurant which is very much like a cool ass little cave. With ‘La Cueva’ translating to ‘The Cave’ in English, it only made sense really.
I am all about fresh and local ingredients, and they definitely had the fresh part going on. I didn’t have a chance to ask about the local part though.
My eyes were already liking what they were seeing. Although, once menu was in hand, and you are presented with what appears to be loads of delicious plates, it ain’t so darn easy anymore.
Oh geez, what the heck to choose?! How about just one of everything?
OK, ok, that’s excessive, it would be far too much…… So we each just chose 2 tapas each for the table.
It was still way too much in the end, but at least we got to try a bit of everything. They have their system down pat, and are ready to rock with the plates at any given moment. It was very good service. The only thing I did notice was the microwave.
We were a bit shocked at how incredibly fast it came, and not being someone whom uses microwaves myself, it was a small bit daunting, but being as hungry as we all were – we weren’t about to complain, and in reality, its not like they were hiding the fact they use a microwave for some things. Everything was made fresh, and I suppose it was necessary to keep up with the capacity of clients they receive. So really, it is what it is. No biggy what-so-ever.
We opted to choose a different Vino then the one on the table, and instead went for the Jose. L. Ferrer. One of my favorite vineyards in Mallorca . We tested out a bit of everything food wise. From olives and aioli,
onward to, potatoes with aioli, mushrooms, pepper padrons(one of my all time Mallorcan favorites), Mallorcan bread and cheese.
Not to mention, shrimps still sizzling.
Calamari, octopus, and shaved ham.
Don’t forget to share – sharing is caring.
The food was all ridiculously good to be honest, and super traditional. If there is one thing I enjoy most in life, it’s taking in as much of the local cultures and traditions where ever in the world I may be. Even when it happens to be in my own Country of Canada.
Just when we thought we were having the time and feed of our lives – in came the live music. My little world would not turn without music, and I am ALL about live music, in any and all forms. So this rocked my darn world.
In came the cavalry.
Pucker up princess. They were freaken awesome! And such good sports. Not to mention, I do love the accordion oh so much! I am into the most random things. I also happen to play a few tunes on the harmonica. Bet you didn’t expect that.
My time was running short in Mallorca. Even though I am never gone that long, I like to end my time here with the most Mallorcan experiences as possible. Considering we thought we were outta luck unless we waited for places to open – we were pleasantly surprised. A feast for a king – a hungry king at that. This little gem of a restaurant was absolutely great, and I would go back to ‘La Cueva‘ in a heart beat.
Hungry for some traditional tapa’s before 8 pm? Well meet me at La Cueva.
Treating your taste buds to culinary seduction is always a sensory event not to be missed. It was a ladies do dinner day, and we weren’t quite sure where to go. After gallivanting all around the city,
enjoying the epic ambiance, and of course being awesome – we needed to pick a place to wine and dine ourselves. We were after someplace new, chic and darn delicious.
Palma has an endless selection of fab establishments to choose from. Mallorca in general actually. You could eat your little heart out with new places to try. So that being said, competition can be stiff -and my love story with Mallorca never ends.
We came across OMBU on our adventures, and having heard so many rave reviews about it, it obviously was a must try.
OMBU is part of 2 other restaurants, Forn & Koa. Each offering different menu’s, and different ambiance’s. I have eaten at both of the other establishments in the past, and had great experiences. Soooo, how could we really go wrong with this choice?!
As any foodie knows, gastronomy is the in culinary craze. Gastronomy is the concept behind OMBU, and their menu specializes in Tapa’s & Cocktails. The décor is modern chic and inviting.
‘Come on in’, it says.
Well, I don’t mind if I do.
We began our OMBU experience sipping on some vino outside, indulging in some people watching.
I do so enjoy a good people watching sesh. Just about as much as I enjoy a good vino sesh. They do go really well together. Like two peas in a pod.
Wouldn’t you agree that it’s just darn fantastic how most restaurants in Palma have little fires by the tables to keep you all toasty warm in the winter. My Northern Canadian blood likes a little chill, but a warm chill. I also love the fact I still get to sit outside. Later on though, as the sun had gone down it did get a bit too chilly to dine outside, so we moved on to get the feel for the inside, and grab a cocktail.
We both went for the Psycotonic.
It was so delish too! Made with ginger and grapefruit juice. Those just so happen to be a couple of my favorite things.
The menu had a nice little selection of Tapa’s to choose from, and in true tapas fashion, you order a few different things for the table to share.
We ended up having Spanish bread, cheeses, lamb and a couple other meat dishes.
The lamb in the martini glass was one of my faves! But seriously, everything was so good. Very well flavored and prepared. We were both very impressed with the food and service.
Our awesome server made sure to bring us an aperitif. Most places in Spain do always offer you a shot after your meal. It’s too good to pass up. So down the hatch it went.
We also were graced with the presence of our friend Paola for a quick catch up.
I would definetly say that if you wake up and find yourself in Palma, do give OMBU a try. It’s super good, and checked all my boxes.
There is nothing like a Mallorcan adventure. More so, just a nice afternoon excursion out of Palma. It’s always good to get out of the city when you can, there is just way too many things to experience on this wondrous island. The winter weather has been so incredibly awesome, it just asking to be basked in.
Santa Maria was the destination on the dice. A beauty of a little town on the interior of the island. No massive plans really, just take a nice walk around, find a beauty of a spot to enjoy some lunch, and sip on some fine wine.
Previously I have been to Santa Maria, but only by car. This time around, we were taking the train. You would be amazed at the awesome little metro system here on the island. I sure the heck was. I had been planning on taking the metro for years here on the island – just for something different, but always ended up driving everywhere. Knowing we had the intention of indulging in some vino, driving was not the mode of transport for us classy ladies.
The trains actually come much more frequent than expected.
We grabbed our tickets, and it was GO time!
Aaaalll aboard. Next stop, Santa Maria.
Ok, not the classiest looking train stop.
The rest is damn classy though. You just hang tight…..
It’s such a nice and quaint little town – epic little place to enjoy a stroll.
This little gas station was too cute not to photograph.
Let’s not forget that it was also during the hours of siesta. So it was extra quiet in the streets. There is no messing around when it comes to siesta time in these necks of the worldwide woods.
Suddenly along our path, we came across an establishment called ‘Livingdreams‘.
With a name like that, I was intrigued and drawn right in. It has such a crisp modern chic and naturally minimal appeal to it.
So we grabbed a table in the front and preceded to get on the vino and olive wagon. The service was given with all smiles, and super welcoming personalities. I was diggin it -that’s for darn sure.
A little while into the day dreaming, nature was calling. That vino was going right through me. So I had to search out the ladies room. I didn’t expected to be astonished. Little did I know, I was absolutely about to be living a dream. A kick ass one that you are happy to not wake up from for as long as you possibly can.
I was pleasantly surprised just walking through the lux establishment, absolutely thinking, ‘well hello, this is enchanting now isn’t it?!’
Very appealing on the eyes.
However, upon entering the courtyard to which I was directed in order to find the ladies room, my eyes widened with sheer delight.
Hiding in the back was a classy courtyard ambiance. The next big thing in my head was, ‘We are moving! right freaken now!’
Wait though on second thought, it’s best I visit the ladies room….. Gotta stick the with program.
After that business was taken care of, it was straight back to Kassandra to say my thoughts outloud ‘We are moving, right freaken now! You will see why.Let’s go’
It was incredible. Right up our freaken alley. We ran around loving the secret garden, taking photos like mad.
I had no problem imagining all the people I want to shared the little gem with(obviously this means you lucky duck).
Before that could happen, we needed to get back to business, sipping our vino and grab a little lunch.
It was all ridiculously good.The wine, the food, the ambiance. I can’t wait to go back for round two.
Yes you could definitely say,
I found my secret garden, with the fountain of Vino!!
The best part about having no plans or expectations, is that it always turns out better then you could have expected, as you didn’t have any – and more often then not, you always end up getting completely blown away by pure epicness.
Sunday funday! One of my favorite days of the week. Its the day I just do whatever I darn well please. Hence why its called Sunday funday. So how does one go about enjoying a Sunday in Mallorca? Well a good start would be to find yourself a quaint little cafe and get your engines going. Coffee, and Europe just go together. I cant imagine one without the other.
So yes, after a good caffeine injection, the next course of action would be to get your blood pumping. I love the feeling of happy endorphin’s surging through my body.
I indulged my ears in the acoustic sounds of Rodrigo y Gabriela. A brother sister duo whom are absolutely incredible at making music. This day was the perfect day for them. Music adds to any experience. It plays a massive roll in my life. The first thing I do in the morning is turn on my tunes to get the day going. I have various music for various moments. If I am writing and need my creative juices to flow(and possibly raise my IQ), its all about the Classical.
I cranked my tunes, grabbed my sweet ass Canadian made bicycle and hit the open road of bike riding adventure.
Bringing my bike with me from Canada, was the best idea ever! I must thank my friends(and mom) for influencing that decision. It’s so freaken awesome having a piece of home with me, and trust me, my bike is loving the Mallorcan experience as much as I am. Leaving its little Canadian tire tracks all over the show.
So as Sunday funday was in full force, I embarked on a little 30km cycle from Palma onwards towards an area called Arenal. With the wind blowing in my hair, music tantalizing my ears, and scenery to write home about(or write to my blog about), I was winning! You can not help but love life when you are here and enjoying this rock star bike riding.
It may be December, but the sun is still shining as brightly as ever. The weather is oddly nice….. So you mine as well make the most of it. Am I right?!
On the way back I found a prime spot on the beach for me and my bike, where I was enjoying some epic ‘me time’, that I love so much – did some grounding, topped up on my vitamin D, and just took in my amazing surroundings.
As you can see my bike loved the beach as much as I did.
Well all that exercise does tend to build an appetite! For nothing less then awesome company and awesome food! Being a day of Mallorcan adventures, it was best to keep things local. So a Spanish restaurant and Spanish Tapa’s it was! We picked a very typical place, called La Plaza – and ordered a small array of tapa’s. No big deal, just a few of my fave’s.
Calamari, local cheese & ham, and some pepper padron’s.
Everything was spot on! Yes it is possible to have mediocre tapa’s, but this was not the case here.
Let’s not forget the Spanish Vino. They weren’t shy on the classy pour either. Pretty much heaving handing it every time. Just when you think its not possible to fit half a bottle of wine in a glass – they prove you otherwise. Talk about getting your money’s worth.
Good laughs, food and vino. Things were going superbly.
It doesn’t stop there. On any given Sunday evening in Mallorca, one of the best places to end up is at one of my fave watering holes. Agua Bar. Sunday and Friday they hold an open mic night, where loads of very talented musicians come out and jam. I love music!! I love Agua bar, jam sessions and I love the awesome people there.
At Agua bar, they have everything covered. They put their clients needs first.
You clearly can’t enjoy good music if you have to pee! I myself would rather be shaken my booty to good tunes, not squirming to hold my bladder together.yoi wouldn’t think it’s safe to leave your drink unattended, and yes in any other place I would not recommend it. Agua bar however is a different story. It’s local, and awesome, an no one ever tampers with your drink. They totally respect the sign. Possibly the best invention ever, in one of the best bars ever.
So there you have it. Mallorca on a Sunday. As does every darn day of the week here – Sunday kicks ass!
So what’s your plans this Sunday?? Because I suggest some Mallorcan adventures for the books if you ask me.