This is where you will find me most Saturday mornings in Cobble Hill. Geir Oglend and his son Carsen roast direct trade coffee beans here and make a smooth cappuccino, just one of their specialties. Geir's wife Patricia rolls out some delicious baked goods every morning, my favourite is the orange coconut brioche. Try it, I guarantee you'll love it!
David Coulson Design:
My new, open concept kitchen/dining/living space was a collaboration with David Coulson Design Ltd. I now have an expanded kitchen prep area, funtional and beautiful island workspace, and open access to dining and living - all flooded with natural light on three sides.
True Grain Organic Bakery:
This little bakery in Cowichan Bay is where I purchase many of my bread products, including baguettes, croissants, multigrain loaves, and my all-time favourite, the L'il Loaf containing chunks of chocolate and roasted hazelnuts.
I love to barbecue, 12 months a year. My Napoleon barbecue is the best I've ever owned. It's made in Canada and my favorite feature is the infrared rotisserie burner. Many a chicken and pork roast has sizzled to perfection on this grill.
Hey, any guy who is into grilling also has to be into barbecue. If you know the difference between grilling and barbecue you need to visit this website. Traeger makes a line of smoker/grills that can be used to grill a steak or a pork chop, but can also achieve the kind of temperature you need for low and slow smoking. I have had a Traeger 'Lil Tex for about 6 years now and I love it, especially for making pulled pork shoulder and hot smoked salmon.
Ming Wo Cookware:
I've been visiting this great shop in Vancouver's Chinatown for the past fifteen years and they really have a fantastic selection of almost everything you could imagine you need for your kitchen. Tell Fontaine I sent you!
This is the home page of Bon Appetit and Gourmet Magazines. It has a huge searchable recipe archive, with comments from readers, a culinary dictionary, and more. Gourmet mag folded last year, but all the recipes every web-published from Gourmet can be found here.
The Stained Apron:
The Stained Apron is a hilarious and sometimes scary website dedicated to the service side of the restaurant industry. You can find out which celebrities are generous or lousy tippers, and what waiters do when they get stuck with an unruly customer.
Okay, I'm stealing a quote on this one, but I like it so much it should be spread about. Leah McLaren of the Globe and Mail calls eGullet.org, 'where the gastro cognoscenti trade tips on the world's most obscure spots for dim sum and recipes for onion-infused chicken fat.' Okay, it's not that bad, but if you're really into food you can spend hours browsing through the forums and articles. If you want to tune in to what's happening on the Western Canada eGullet forums, go here.
Barbara-Jo's Books to Cooks:
Barbara-jo McIntosh's bookstore is totally devoted to the culinary arts. The shop is on Vancouver's West 2nd Avenue in a block that is swiftly becoming a great food street in the city. There is a wide-ranging selection, and if you can't find it on her shelves, she'll do her best to find it for you from anywhere around the world. There is also a beautiful kitchen built right into the bookshop, where Barbara-jo offers cooking classes and book-signing sessions with local and visiting authors.
For seven years I have been the proud owner of a 'superautomatic' espresso machine from Saeco, one of the world's premiere coffee machine makers. My Vienna Deluxe, grinds the beans, tamps them in place, brews the espresso and then dumps the spent grounds into a handy container. The steamer attachment produces beautifully-frothed milk with no muss and no fuss. I use it every day. The line has been much modernized over the past few years, but the quality remains true to the product. You can find Saeco distributors in Canada by visiting their webpage.
BC Liquor Stores:
If you're looking for a particular type of wine, beer, or spirit, you can look for it online through the BC Liquor Store website.
The Gourmet Warehouse in East Vancouver started as a tiny part of a food distribution company's storage space. Now the store is larger than the warehouse space. It's run by the effervescent Caren McSherry, and is home to almost any ingredient or cooking tool you need to make your perfect recipe.
On a certified organic farm near Sorrento, BC, Brian MacIsaac and Rebecca Kneen make some of the finest Irish ales I've ever tasted. You need to go to a pub or restaurant in BC to taste their brews, so visit their website for locations.
This is an advocacy group dedicated to educating people in BC about food security and encouraging us to EAT LOCAL! They conduct two annual fundraisers called Feast of Fields on farms in the Vancouver and Victoria area, and they are not to be missed.
Your Local Farmers Market Society:
This is a website that gives you all the info you need about the Farmers Markets in the Vancouver area. My favorite is the East Vancouver Farmers Market at Trout Lake.
The New York Times:
I hate to admit it, but the food sections of many of our major newspapers in Canada leave a lot to be desired. The Toronto Star's section isn't too bad, The Victoria Times Colonist is good for the size of population it serves, and the Edmonton Journal used to have a good section, although I haven't seen it lately. I frequently visit the New York Times food and dining section on the web since it has a lot of great stories that are of general interest, and Mark Bittman's 'The Minimalist' columns will always give you a fast idea when you're stuck on what to cook for dinner.
This is the home page of Natalie Maclean, now one of Canada's best-known wine writers. Her home page offers tons of wine reviews, a food and wine matching wizard that gets as detailed as what goes with Asian dishes with black bean sauce, and you can also join 70 thousand other people there who have signed up for her free e-newsletter.