Numero Uno – Number E

What does your ideal lunch look like? Now, don’t list soup, salad and other such healthy items.
Be truthful.
How about the good ‘ol sandwich? Maybe.
Sandwich with simple ingredients and complex flavours? Sure.
Warm, freshly made sandwich? Definitely!

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Definition of the perfect sandwich changes from person to person, day to day and even mood to mood. What make the perfect sandwich are not ingredients but feelings! Feelings with which the sandwich is made and the feelings with which the sandwich is relished.

On a sunny afternoon, one of our sandwich expeditions ended at Number E. More like #e. While chatting and eating, we learned so much about our new partner that we had to share with you.
To begin with, there’s an interesting story behind their name. Glenn, founding owner of Number E, narrated how the name came from an eatery he frequented in Ottawa. He said, “the store had the menu board by letters. All items were listed with alphabets instead of numbers. The older gentleman working there would always shout out who ordered the Number E, the letter of the meal I regularly ordered”. He further added how #e has stuck with him even before the hashtag craziness came into being. When Glenn founded the eatery, he was looking for a name that could be a symbol and would become a brand. Hence, Number E or #e was born.

Number E promotes healthy, clean eating sans additives and preservatives. All their items are store made with bread baked daily in house. “We do not use any frozen items and do not reheat or microwave orders. If we cannot make it in-house, we do not do it”, says Glenn. He adds that their store motto is to eat clean food without additives, just real food.
This really made our superficial health conscious selves happy. If you are into clean, healthy eating then make #e your new hangout.

For all those of you who think clean, healthy eating is boring and bland, think again.

A bite into Number E’s Lemon-Rosemary Chicken Sandwich will change your mind and beliefs for good. This also happens to be their best selling item. It has to be! You know the meal is delicious when you want to eat it slower just so you can enjoy it longer. Perfectly grilled juicy pieces of chicken on freshly baked Tuscan bread with baby greens, pickled jalapenos (made in-house) and avocado, this sandwich from #e gets 2 thumbs up from us.

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While discussing their best selling item, Glenn said, “People love our chicken. It’s fresh as it’s from a local farm. We buy all our meats from local farms. The idea is to try to keep our money in our region and to support local businesses”. As a local startup, we support and preach this idea, too.

Discussion about food is always incomplete without us quizzing the Owners/ Founders about their personal favourites. Glenn responded to this query of ours with Reuben Sandwich. What makes Reuben his favourite?
“It’s in the way we prepare it”, he says. He explained how this idea, too, came from little eatery in Ottawa that he visited often.”The older Italian gentleman at the shop would throw the smoked meat on his flat top, put it in a Hoagie bun, garnish it with some mustard and pickle and the sandwich was ready! It was great. Simple but great”, said Glenn almost picturing the sandwich. Their Reuben sandwich is definitely one of a kind with simple ingredients yet powerful flavours. This could be one of the reasons why someone once placed an order for it right from the airport!

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Making it to the list of most memorable experiences at work, this incident made Glenn happy and proud. Giving us more details about the incident, Glenn said, “I was preparing to close the restaurant on a Saturday evening when a guy called me from the airport at about 4:15pm saying he is on his way and would arrive by 5pm. He called at 4:40 again telling me where he was and ordered a Reuben and a Chicken Sandwich. The two showed up just before 5pm, sat in and enjoyed their sandwiches. Infact, he loved the Reuben so much that he ordered another one! Not only that, he came in 2 other times before he went back home to Sacramento”.

Now that you know that Number E’s Rueben sandwich has international fans, too, you have to try it if you still haven’t. Then there’s our favourite Lemon-Rosemary Chicken sandwich. Oh, you cannot miss the Meatloaf sandwich. It’s a meat lover’s heaven! Apart from sandwiches, #e’s menu boosts a delicious selection of soups and take-home meals. The choice of drinks at #e does not end at water and pop. They have different teas, smoothies and lattes on their menu. If that’s not enough, they even have various pickles and spreads available on sale in store. So much deliciousness under one roof? Yes, that’s #e for you.

 

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With eyes set on expansion, all Glenn wants is to keep cooking and making good food that makes people happy!

 

Bright & Flavourful ❦ Pickled Strawberry, Goat Cheese & Honeyed Walnut Salad — Urban Cottage Life

Looking for a summer salad that marries together a melange of bright and assertive flavours and textures? Look no further than this salad that combines crunchy romaine, piquant parsley, tangy pickled strawberries, pungent goat cheese and rich, sweet walnuts!

via Bright & Flavourful ❦ Pickled Strawberry, Goat Cheese & Honeyed Walnut Salad — Urban Cottage Life

Coconut Maple All-Bran® Cereal Ice Cream — The Food Gays

Originally created first on The Food Gays http://www.FoodGays.com Of course you deserve a summer treat. We’ve partnered with Kellogg’s® All-Bran® to bring you this tasty Coconut Maple All-Bran® Cereal Ice Cream that can be enjoyed at any time of the year. Got a sweet tooth? This creamy, guilt-free summer treat is exactly the kind of dessert…

via Coconut Maple All-Bran® Cereal Ice Cream — The Food Gays

Uncommon Food and Uncommon Love

On a crisp, breezy morning, the smell of freshly baked muffins and the warmth of coffee can make anyone feel at home. Sprinkle that with the warmth of the hosts and you don’t want to step out. This is exactly what happened with us the other day when we were at The Uncommon Cafe. Having worked with them for quite some time now, we thought it was about time that we brought their story to you.

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While walking down Powell Street, it is impossible to not step in at the Uncommon Cafe. Uncommon, isn’t it an uncommon name? How was this name conceived? What’s so uncommon about Uncommon? Well, these and few other questions were answered by Co-Owner Lisa Leimanis over some scrumptious goodies.

Lisa and her husband, Luc, are the minds and hands behind The Uncommon Café. Initially planning just a commissary, Uncommon is their brainchild through which they want to support other local small businesses. With the commissary, they wanted to be a financially viable option in the commercial kitchen spaces for different small establishments. Luc chose the name “The Uncommonssary Kitchen”.

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Lisa says that apart from being just landlords to small businesses, they wanted to work with them and beside them, too. Now with The Uncommon Cafe, on 477 Powell Street, they prepare home-like food for a thriving community while working with other local small businesses. Home-like? They prefer to call it Homemade (to which we can’t agree more!).

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Almost everything they have in the store is made in-house. The in-house Chef & Baker make everything from scratch – the ricotta, the muffins, the pulled pork, the jalapeno jelly, the weekly desserts – all the items are made on site with many of the recipes coming from their families. On the other hand, the coffee, tea, popsicles and different products in store are sourced from local small vendors.

At Uncommon, Lisa says, they want you to feel at home by being comfortable, known and well fed. Their passion for food, community, local businesses and health is reflected in all their dealings.

Talking of food, we had to quiz Lisa on their top selling item and personal favourite.
Braised Chicken” said Lisa with a proud smile lighting up her face. She then proceeded to explain how their braised chicken is a unique blend of various flavours. With double creamed Brie, Applewood smoked Bacon, homemade Jalapeno Jelly (prepared by Chef Luc) and Herb Aioli, their Braised Chicken is a crowd pleaser. You have to close your eyes to enjoy the taste of so many flavours mixing in your mouth!

“While Braised Chicken is a top seller, we are well known for our Meatballs, too”, said Lisa. With mentions in the Vancity Buzz (Top Meatballs in the City), LA Times (Mind-blowing Meatballs) and other local publications, Meatballs is Uncommon’s another notable delicacy. “When you stuff your Meatballs with Mint, I guess, you got a winner!” mentioned Lisa on giving us a quick insight on their distinct blend for Meatballs.

Apart from Braised  Chicken and Meatballs, do try their Quiche, too. Their French baker, Valentine Kitamura, knows how to do it right in the most authentic way.

While guests and friends love these items, Lisa’s personal favorites are the Porky Bun and the BOB (short of Bacon Onion Bun). “How you can go wrong when you take Grandma’s bun dough and pack it with BBQ slathered pulled pork or sautéed bacon and onions?!”, asks Lisa looking at the plate of buns in front of us. Before you ask, a bite into these buns is a trip down the memory lane which goes straight to your childhood where snacking on house baked goodies was one of your favourite pastimes.

 

BOB

When you work so hard, prepare some flavorful treats and consider customers as guests, you are bound to get immense appreciation from them. It is this appreciation and love that keeps the Uncommon Team going. Lisa narrated one such incident where hearing back from their customer shows how they have been successful in cultivating the community spirit. A Christmas Card from a nearby business in their area read, “Thanks for being in the neighbourhood. We would all still be hangry without you!”. If you are around Jackson Avenue and Powell Street, you would know how true this is.

It is good to know how much Uncommon Cafe has achieved in just a year’s time. Yes, just a year. In fact, they are celebrating their 1-year anniversary today, June 30th  ! To mark the occasion, they are hosting a Birthday BBQ from 2pm – 7pm this evening on their premises. If you are around, do pay them a visit to experience the delicious food and warm hospitality first hand.
Other than this, they will also be a part of the celebrations for this year’s 40th Annual Powell Street Festival on July 30 & 31st. Another reason for you to visit them? Yes, absolutely.

“See you soon!”, says Lisa with the warm smile that we be back for apart from the food.

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We Love That With Kay! – Adventure Time in the Trees

Where is Kay? Yes, she has been busy. Busy with some interesting and thrilling adventures. Here’s an account of one of her recent adventures. She writes this while she’s packing and planning for the next one!

What:   Treetop Adventure Course
Who:    The Adventure Group
Where: Whistler
When:  All. Summer. Long.

Treetop Adventures is best described as an obstacle course of sorts, situated within the trees of Whistler’s Cougar Mountain. Imagine living in a tree house and having to traverse your way across a community of tree houses built on ladders, tightropes, suspended buoys, and the occasional zip line taking you from point A to point B. There are three levels to the course—starts maybe ten feet off the ground and then gets higher and higher as you proceed. It is a looooot of fun and I’m hoping to go once every summer!

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You’re strapped in with a harness, so do not  worry about slipping off a platform or planting your foot in the wrong place! The Adventure Group also has an easy-to-follow yet safe and clever way of making sure you don’t fall to your death. They’ve got a system of carabiners that hook and unhook to major line that runs throughout the entire course—the one your harness relies on. It’s all pretty settling that you’re in the hands of people who know what they’re doing.

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I should add that it’s a bit of a workout. One of my girlfriends warned us to not wear ripped jeans (I really wanted to, actually!) or denim shorts for that matter and to instead get fully decked out in whatever spandex materials we had on hand. There’s arm strength involved if you are consistently falling off things (such as me), sweating profusely, and trying to balance yourself on pieces of wood that are literally strung up in mid-air. If you’re afraid of heights, this might not be for you.

Pro tip: Be the first group to go. My girlfriend pushed us to do so (to our initial chagrin, if I’m being honest) and actually volunteered us to go first. This is to avoid being stuck behind other groups who might take a little more time getting through the obstacles or who are afraid of heights. I definitely had my moments of being scared to push forward. This, of course, was highlighted by my friends and with their yells of encouragement.

 

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The best part of this adventure? Treetop Adventures gives you the opportunity to swing on a rope—Tarzan in the jungle style. Who wouldn’t want to try something like that in their lifetime?

Till next adventure, here’s Kay signing off! 🙂