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Seaport Beerfest – Halifax

11 Aug

Beer Fest Halifax Seaport MugBased on our post on Rockbottom and our frequent references to Garrison and Propeller, it’s no secret that we are lovers of craft beer, and especially love the microbreweries we have here in Halifax.  So, it was with great anticipation that we’ve been looking forward to this year’s Seaport Beerfest (@SeaportBeerfest).

Beerfest takes place every summer in and in front of Pavillion 20 of the Halifax Seaport.  It brings together some of the best microbreweries from Atlantic Canada, Quebec, Ontario and some from out west, as well as breweries from Maine and the rest of the U.S. and beyond. When we entered, we were each given a map and a mini-mug, our passport to more than 200 potential beer samples.

PEI Brewing Company Beach HouseThe breweries are arranged by province or region.  We tried many beers, but put the majority of our focus on the 33 beers from the Maritime Provinces.  Top marks went to Rock Bottom IPA, PEI Brewing Company‘s Beach Chair, and Picaroons‘ Melonhead. Rock Bottom’s IPA has the hoppiness that an IPA should have, balanced with an infusion of citrus and grapefruit.  Beach Chair and Melonhead are both great choices for the final month of summer.  They both had a nice, light, crisp flavour, with the Melonhead providing a sweet, strong watermelon taste.

St Ambroise OatmealWe also want to give special mention to two non-local beers. The St. Ambroise Oatmeal Stout is a great introduction to black beer.  It was smooth, silky, and full of flavour, very easy to drink for a dark brew.  We also have to mention Brasseurs Sans Gluten’s Glutenburg beers (3 in total), which won the gold,  silver and bronze in the Gluten Free category at the 2012 World Beer Cup.  They were all around great beers, not just ‘great for a gluten free beer’.

Taste of Nova Scotia set up some edibles to go with the beer.  Saege Bistro was offering chicken tacos and sausages, Bramoso had a couple of their gourmet pizzas, and Pristine Cuisine Catering was there with their traveling oyster bar.  Unfortunately we missed out on Fid Kitchen and Scanway’s edibles.  All of the food was excellent, but the mustard on the Saege sausages was out of this world.

We had a blast at Beerfest, it was a great opportunity to experience some of the best brews our area has to offer, as well as compare our craft brew to better known producers like Germany.  The event was packed, but really well run, with minimal waits at each station. The only exception was the restrooms, which were lined up out the door for most of the night.  It is the first time I’ve ever seen the men’s line longer than the women’s.

Future attendees, take note – you need to take care of your mug as it’s not easy to get a replacement.  I saw one guy drop his in a urinal and attempt to clean it with hot water, gaining him the nickname “Pisscup” in the men’s washroom.

We made a valiant effort to live-blog our experience along with a few other Tweeters.  Check out #hfxbeerfest to find the tweets.  Please excuse the spelling and grammatical errors!


Scotia Sessions Wakeboarding – Nine Mile River

7 Jul

A few years ago, I hitched across Canada and ended up at a bachelor party at a cottage in Muskoka.  The fellas there were wakeboarding, so being a good sport I gave it a go.  I was a dismal failure (i.e. I couldn’t even stand on the board).  Naturally, I haven’t been too keen to get back on a wakeboard since then.  But when Gillian told me that Nova Scotia was home to a Cable WakeBoard park, I couldn’t resist trying a second go.

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Open City – Top 5 Picks

12 May

@IlovelocalHFX launched the first ‘Open City’ event this weekend. Today and tomorrow, local retailers across the city have been invited to give discounts and deals on their products to local shoppers. The full list of discounts and retailers can be found on the I Love Local Halifax webpage, and is pretty extensive.

We woke up at 6:30 am to get a head start on the action. After reviewing the list, and a bit of early morning browsing, these are our top 5 picks to hit up during the first Open City weekend.

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Glasgow Square

21 Nov

As a more than occasional event planner, it is always exciting to experience a new venue. That excitement is tenfold when the reason for experiencing a new venue is due to a gathering of some top-notch local musicians. Such was the case Friday night when we headed to The Green Room in Glasgow Square for the intimate CD release of local musician Steven Bowers.

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It’s More Than Buses

20 Jun

As someone living on a main bus route, whose only real destination by bus is the downtown core, Public Transit in Halifax has served me fairly well. Like most bus users, though, I have had my fair share of irritations with the limitations of our public transit system like when my end-of-the-work-day bus just doesn’t arrive, or the 3 buses and two hours it sometimes takes to get to where I want to go in HRM.

In defense of Metro Transit, HRM has some unique transportation obstacles. To get from Halifax to Dartmouth, you have to deal with bottle necking at the two bridges, and our main arteries have not been well designed to favour transit users. We also don’t have the luxury of a ‘grid’ layout.

Dalhousie University’s Planning & Design Centre and Fusion Halifax are looking to shed some light on our public transportation woes. This summer, they will be co- hosting three public forums aiming to improve public transportation in HRM. The series, titled “It’s More Than Buses” will invite experts from across the country to discuss the issues surrounding public transportation.

The first forum will take place on June 28th at the World Trade and Convention Centre from 6 pm – 8 pm. Guest Speakers will include Jarrett Walker, international consultant in Public Transportation, Frank Palermo, Architecture and Planning professor from Dalhousie University, and Steven Dale, founding director of Creative Urban Projects.

To find out more about the project, or to keep tabs on the times and places of the three public forums, you can check them out on Facebook:!/itsmorethanbuses?sk=info