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FALL 2016

ISL AND LIFE AT ITS FINEST

Heritage Fashion, Harvest Delights & Wee Drams of Glory

A CUT ABOVE Designing for the future

ISLAND ALLURE A glorious, eco-friendly Gabriola home

FUNCTIONAL ART

Sleek and contemporary designs


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IVERS

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¹All prices are MSRP in Canadian dollars. MSRP is the Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price and excludes taxes, freight and PDI ($1,625/$1,760), levies, fees, optional equipment, license, insurance, registration, and any dealer or other charges, where applicable. Environmental or related levies and taxes may vary by jurisdiction. Dealer may sell for less. European or American models may be shown. Specifications, equipment, options and prices are subject to change without notice. Although we endeavour to ensure that the information contained on the website is accurate, as errors may occur from time to time, customers should contact their local Volkswagen dealer for details. Photos for illustration purposes only. Some items, such as wheels, may be unavailable on some trim levels when vehicle is built or may not be available in Canada. Fuel consumption ratings are estimates based on Natural Resources Canada’s (NRCan) fuel consumption criteria and testing methods for 2016 model year vehicles and are provided for comparison purposes only. Please note that comparisons to seemingly similar vehicles pre-2015 model year will show discrepancies due to the difference in NRCan approved calculation methods for 2014 model year and older vehicles. Please refer to NRCan’s Fuel Consumption Guide 2016 for estimated fuel consumption figures. Actual fuel consumption will vary based on driving conditions, driver habits and the vehicle’s condition, weight carried and additional equipment. Tires are supplied and warranted by their manufacturer. The vehicle is sold equipped with four all-season tires. However, please remember that the use of winter tires may be mandatory in your province or territory. Airbags are supplemental restraints only and will not deploy under all accident scenarios. Always use safety belts and seat children only in the rear seats, using restraint systems appropriate for their size and age. The navigation system depends upon signals from the GPS network and is designed to provide you with suggested routes only. Discrepancies may occur between the mapping and the actual location due to changes in street names, construction or other road system changes which are beyond the control of Volkswagen Canada. Please rely on your individual judgment in determining whether or not to follow a suggested navigation route. “Dynaudio” is a registered trademark of Dynaudio Holding A/S. “Android Auto” and “Google” are trademarks of Google Inc. “CarPlay” and “Apple” are trademarks of Apple Inc. “MirrorLink” is a trademark of Car Connectivity Consortium LLC. © 2015 Volkswagen Canada. “Volkswagen”, the Volkswagen logo and “Touareg” are registered trademarks of Volkswagen AG. “FSI” is a registered trademark of Audi AG. © 2016 Volkswagen Canada.


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FEATURES

On the cover Beautiful kitchen area from the story "Island allure." Photo by Dirk Heydemann

24 ISLAND ALLURE

Beautiful Gabriola retreat

marks a massive leap forward in

energy efficiency

By Tess van Straaten

40 A WEE DRAM OF GLORY

A peek at Shelter Point

Distillery

By Chelsea Forman

46 COUNTRY CLASSIC

Heritage fashion at The

Crow & Gate Pub.

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By Lia Crowe

62 FUNCTIONAL ART

Ben Verduin’s pieces are

sleek, contemporary

and useful

By Angela Cowan

66 VIBRANT VEGGIES

Unsung heroes make

holiday sides sizzle

By Chef Heidi Fink

80 OUTSIDE THE TEAPOT

Cooking with tea

By Pamela Durkin


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56 40

24

46

CONTENTS DEPARTMENTS 92 FRONT ROW 8 OUR CONTRIBUTORS

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INSPIRED PEOPLE

Aaron Pritchett

12 EDITOR’S LETTER

By Laura Lavin

Vancouver Island in the

slow lane

34 TALKING WITH TESS

14

What’s on this month

By Sherry Conly

98 OUTTAKE

A cut above:

INSPIRED DESIGN

Nikki MacCallum

Work it!

By Tess van Straaten

By Lia Crowe

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73 TRAVEL FAR

INSPIRED CHEFS

Provencal perfection:

Rick Davidson,

Luxury Small Hotels

Beach Club Resort

By Susan Lundy

86 TRAVEL NEAR

Salt Spring: Queen of the

Gulf Islands

By Hans Tammemagi

By Lia Crowe

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OUR CONTRIBUTORS LIA CROWE

SHERRY CONLY

ANGELA COWAN

WRITER: FRONT ROW

WRITER: FUNCTIONAL ART

PAGE 92

PAGE 61

“From a regal ballet, to classic symphony notes, split second photographs and the slow, smooth transition of lasting love, as discussed with singer Chantal Kreviazuk, Front Row highlights the diversity and beauty of life.” Born and raised in Nanaimo, Sherry graduated from Vancouver Island University with a degree in writing and a focus on journalism.

WRITER/ PHOTOGRAPHER COUNTRY CLASSIC

“"Shooting at The Crow & Gate Pub for this month’s fashion story brought a little bit of magic to our photos with it’s unique interior and breathtaking property. Great fall fashion and beautiful models didn’t hurt either.” Lia Crowe is a freelance stylist, creative director, photographer and writer with a long history of working in the fashion industry.

“Creativity needs space and inspiration to thrive, and artist Ben Verduin has both in abundance on his beautiful property. Wandering the sculpture-strewn meadow, I felt my own creative urges sparking and couldn’t keep my pen moving fast enough.” Angela is an award-winning journalist, published poet, freelance writer and editor who grew up in Nanaimo and honed her writing skills in Vancouver Island University’s notable creative writing program.

DON DENTON

PAMELA DURKIN

HEIDI FINK

BOULEVARD STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER: INSPIRED CHEFS

WRITER: THINKING OUTSIDE THE TEAPOT

WRITER: VIBRANT VEGGIES PAGE 66

PAGE 80

PAGE 16 “Photographing executive chef Rick Davidson’s kitchen at the Beach Club Resort in Parksville on a hot summer day was a reminder of all the hard work and sometimes trying conditions (it was hot at the beach and in the kitchen) that restaurant staff work under to produce that perfect dish that arrives at your table.” Don has photographed numerous high-profile events, including the Olympics, World Hockey Championships and a Royal wedding.

“Raised by British parents who were avid tea drinkers, I was well acquainted with the pleasures of drinking tea. After researching the ‘cooking with tea’ article for Boulevard, I can now say I’ve also discovered the delights of using tea as a flavour catalyst in a wide range of recipes — it’s become my favourite ‘kitchen muse’.” Pamela is a freelance health writer and nutritional consultant whose work has appeared in Boulevard, Eat, Reader’s Digest, Alive, Spa Business and more.

GROUP PUBLISHER Penny Sakamoto ASSOCIATE GROUP Oliver Sommer PUBLISHER ADVERTISING DIRECTOR Mario Gedicke

250.891.5627 EDITOR Susan Lundy

ASSOCIATE EDITOR Lia Crowe

CIRCULATION & Glen Convey DISTRIBUTION 250.480.3285 CONTRIBUTING Sherry Conly, Angela Cowan, WRITERS Lia Crowe, Pamela Durkin,

Heidi Fink, Chelsea Forman, Laura Lavin, Anne Mullens, DESIGN Lorianne Koch Michelle Gjerde Hans Tammemagi, Tess van Straaten Claudia Gross

CREATIVE DIRECTOR Lily Chan

Lia Crowe, Don Denton, ADVERTISING Mario Gedicke CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHERS Dirk Heydemann, Andrea Rosato-Taylor Nik West

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“Writing this article reminded me how much I love the Thanksgiving holiday season and how excited I am to hunker down on a rainy day and roast, glaze, caramelize, and otherwise fantastic-ify some local vegetables.” Heidi Fink is a chef, food writer and culinary instructor, specializing in local foods and ethnic cuisines.

ADVERTISE Boulevard Magazine is Vancouver Island’s leading lifestyle magazine, celebrating 26 years of publishing on the Island. To advertise or to learn more about advertising opportunities please send us an email at info@blvdmag.ca Mailing Address: 818 Broughton Street, Victoria, BC, V8W 1E4 Tel: 250.381.3484 Fax: 250.386.2624 info@blvdmag.ca blvdmag.ca

Victoria Boulevard ® is a registered trademark of Black Press Group Ltd. All rights reserved. No part of this magazine may be reproduced without the publisher’s written permission. Ideas and opinions expressed in this publication do not necessarily reflect the views of Black Press Group Ltd. or its affiliates; no official endorsement should be inferred. The publisher does not assume any responsibility for the contents, both implied or assumed, of any advertisement in this publication. Printed in Canada. Canada Publications Mail Product Sales Agreement #42109519.


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OUR CONTRIBUTORS

CHELSEA FORMAN

DIRK HEYDEMANN

LAURA LAVIN

WRITER: A WEE DRAM OF GLORY

PHOTOGRAPHER: ISLAND ALLURE

WRITER: INSPIRED PEOPLE

PAGE 40

PAGE 24

PAGE 18

“Visiting the artisanal Shelter Point Distillery to sip its inaugural batch of whisky, I learned that an excellent dram is a lifestyle captured in a bottle. Shelter Point combines the best of the West Coast, with traditional Scottish distillation, to gift sippers across the world a taste of the good Vancouver Island life.” Chelsea is a writer of all topics lifestyle.

“When I asked about his trademark double ear piercings, Aaron Pritchett told me he once took them out because he needed a change, but was quickly convinced being ‘the guy with the earrings’ was his ‘thing.’ It’s a look he’s lived up to with his rebel-country sound.” Laura is a freelance writer and aficionado of theatre, dance and music.

ANNE MULLENS

HANS TAMMEMAGI

TESS VAN STRAATEN

WRITER: PROVENCAL PERFECTION

WRITER: ISLAND BLISS

WRITER: ISLAND ALLURE

PAGE 73

PAGE 86

PAGE 34

“Zipping around the hills of Les Baux de Provence on an electric-assist bike, I thought of all those who’d been there before me: neolithic cave-dwellers, Roman centurians, medieval knights, Impressionist painters. All, I’m sure, appreciated the gorgeous landscape, but I think I was having the most fun.” Anne Mullens, a former Boulevard editor, is a freelancer writer, editor and communications consultant.

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“I enjoyed working with Lia Crowe to capture and create images of the Gabriola passive house. The homeowners, the design and decor of the house made capturing these images inspiring and fun, as well as a unique experience.” Dirk has been shooting professionally as a commercial and wedding photographer for over 20 years. He loves to see and hear that his images have made an impact and difference in people’s lives.

“I couldn’t imagine anything more fun than gamboling about the quirky, laid-back and stunning Salt Spring Island, and then writing about it.” Hans’ writing is eclectic, including travel, environment, and Native culture. He has penned 10 books (one national bestseller) and writes for numerous newspapers and magazines in Canada and internationally.

“Being a real estate buff, amateur designer enthusiast and green enthusiast, I couldn’t wait to tour our feature home on Gabriola Island. Sadly, I broke my toe in two places the day before I was supposed to go and with crutches and a walking boot, I had to ‘see’ the home through pictures and interviews with the homeowners and the builder. What a fabulous place!” Tess is an award-winning journalist and television personality who has had the privilege of interviewing people for close to two decades.


EDITOR’S LETTER

Vancouver Island in the slow lane BY SUSAN LUNDY

MV Uchuck III on a day trip to Friendly Cove on Nooka Island, where, in 1778, Captain Cook and his crew became the first documented Europeans to set foot in British Columbia. It was a glorious trip that, among other things, truly highlighted the diversity of Vancouver Island. We drove the edges of mountainous terrain, tasted the sea air, dipped our toes in history and wound through small cities like Nanaimo, Parksville and Courtney, but also savoured the small towns that cling to the coast like Bowser, Union Bay and Royston. This is a long way of saying that with so many great stories and beautiful visuals here, launching Boulevard for mid Vancouver Island makes a ton of sense. We are thrilled to have this brand new forum to showcase “mid-island life at its finest.” We hope you enjoy our inaugural edition, and look forward to publishing again in late November. Like our road trip this summer, Boulevard mid-island touches down in Cowichan, where we explore the creative functional art of Ben Verduin. At a stop in Ladysmith, we find seamstress and entrepreneur Nikki MacCallum, before heading to Cedar for a peek at trendy local fashion, and then to Gabriola Island to tour a sleek, energy efficient home. Also on Gabriola, we find famed country singer Aaron Pritchett, who, in addition to topping the music charts, finds joy working at his local bar. Our regular Front Row feature shares some of the many happenings in the arts over the next few months; and our food section puts vibrant veggies at centre stage — just in time for Thanksgiving feasts. Our travel stories whisk readers away to small luxury hotels in Provençal France and, closer to home, the eclectic Salt Spring Island. Travelling further north on Vancouver Island, we stop in at the Beach Club Resort for a chat with chef Rick Davidson, before moving on and savouring the wee delights at Shelter Point Distillery. All in all, it makes for a glorious collection of great stories and stunning imagery to enjoy as summer slowly turns into fall. And take it from someone who drives “that vehicle,” spending a little time in the slow lane isn’t such a bad thing. PHOTO BY LIA CROWE

T

HIS SUMMER, MY HUSBAND AND I PACKED UP OUR speedchallenged 1978 VW van, hit the Island Highway and became “that” vehicle. “That” vehicle is the one you spot as you round the corner of a single lane roadway. It’s in the distance, usually with a few cars trapped behind it, often moving in slow motion. It causes you to groan or, more likely, curse and start mentally executing the quickest means of putting it behind you. Meanwhile, at the front of the line, we chug and putter along at top speeds of 80 km per hour. When we’re “that” vehicle, we pull over when we can. And, most importantly, we get a much longer look at passing scenery than occurs when we travel in our burly Toyota FJ. Most of our lives are spent in motion as we dash between meetings and juggle phone calls, emails, texts … Life moves quickly. But when you get behind the wheel of an old V-Dub, the world changes. You can’t go fast, can’t think about changing lanes and passing trucks and zooming to your destination. Everything slows down. Years ago, we drove the van across the country, quickly discovering that the Trans-Canada Highway was too fast for us (or we were too slow for it). We decided to bypass the cities and take slower, secondary highways. We motored through sprawling farmland and expansive prairies; small towns with towering church spires and rural homes with lines of colourful laundry fluttering in the wind. We saw a lot of Canada — in the slow lane. (Once in a dimwitted moment on that trip, we purchased a bumper sticker that read, “We may be slow, but at least we’re ahead of you” — almost certainly fuelling the exasperation motoring behind us.) Likewise this summer (tactless bumper sticker long since removed), we slowed our pace, drove the old Island Highway instead of the new, stopped frequently, and revelled in Vancouver Island’s stunning beauty and its medley of landscapes. We dropped by the Crow and Gate for lunch in Cedar, sauntered the beach at Rathtrevor, slurped oysters at the Fanny Bay Inn and sat, ocean side, at a private fire pit at a campsite just outside of Courtenay. Eventually, we made it further north, spending our wedding anniversary in a stunning waterfront inn at Alert Bay, exploring the boardwalk at Telegraph Cove and driving a dusty back road to Zeballos, where we had an entire grassy, riverside campground all to ourselves. Later we puttered down to Gold River and took the

WITH SO MANY GREAT STORIES AND BEAUTIFUL VISUALS HERE, LAUNCHING BOULEVARD FOR MID VANCOUVER ISLAND MAKES A TON OF SENSE.

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Boulevard editor Susan Lundy is a former journalist and twotime recipient of the prestigious Jack Webster Award. Her awardwinning stories have appeared in numerous magazines and newspapers, and she is also the author of Heritage Apples: A New Sensation (Touchwood Editions, 2013).


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inspiredCHEFS

PHOTOS BY DON DENTON

RICK DAVIDSON, EXECUTIVE CHEF, BEACH CLUB RESORT, PARKSVILLE


QUICK FACTS:

• Age 46 • Born in “The Big R” — Revelstoke, BC — and raised in Nanaimo. • Trained at Vancouver Island University, formerly Malaspina University-College, and George Brown Hospitality College. Apprenticed at the Hilton International Toronto under Executive Chef Albert Schnell. • Chef at Beach Club for four years. • Also worked at: Union Club of British Columbia, Executive Chef of Arbutus Ridge Golf Club, Sous Chef Tigh-na-mara Resort and Conference Centre, Chef de Parti at the Fairmont Empress Hotel, Delta Vancouver Suites and the Wedgewood Hotel.

WHAT ARE YOU BEST KNOWN FOR AS A CHEF? Like most chefs it is my calm, cool and collected exterior. However, I would like to think it’s for the quality and consistency of food our team puts out on a daily basis. But I also try to break away from the line and go out to meet the people who come into our restaurant to dine. If you were to ask my apprentice, he might say something totally different.

WHAT ARE THE 10 OR SO MOST IMPORTANT INGREDIENTS IN YOUR PANTRY? Great question. I would have to say shallots, garlic, onions, celery and carrots. They are flavour builders. Adding to the list, would be salt, peppercorns, herbs (preferably fresh), all spices, saffron, all vinegars and Arborio rice and oils.

WHAT’S YOUR FAVOURITE DISH TO COOK AND EAT ON A LATE SUMMER DAY? Key word is “summer” and if you talk to Carmen, my better half, she would say I don’t cook on my day off. But for me, if I am cooking, grilled vegetables and rib eye steak on the barbecue!

WHAT’S YOUR “GO TO” ITEM WHEN SAMPLING OTHER CHEFS’ FARE? I gave it away in the previous question. I am a carnivore and I eat steak but I am partial to an in-house made burger!

HOBBIES? I like to go out and chase a little white ball in a field where the object is to put it in a tiny little hole several yards away where they put trees, lakes, rivers and beaches in the way. A

Cajun crusted sockeye salmon from Executive Chef Rick Davidson at the Beach Club Resort in Parksville.

great relaxing sport! I also have a Husky Shepherd and a cool girl and kids that occupy my time when not slaving away in the heat of the kitchen.

CAN YOU SHARE AN EASY, SEASONAL RECIPE FOR A QUICK NOSH THIS FALL? Well, seeing how I mention grilled vegetables and steak, I will share my spice rub for grilled vegetables and my rule for grilling steak. Grilled Vegetable Rub (has multi uses as well) 2 Tbsp salt 2 Tbsp paprika 1.5 Tbsp cajun spice or blackening spice 1 Tbsp black pepper — fine 2.5 Tbsp garlic powder 1.5 tsp cayenne pepper 2.5 Tbsp onion powder 2.5 Tbsp garlic salt 2.5 Tbsp celery salt Mix together and season cut vegetables with enough canola oil to cover and coat, and grill to desired doneness, finishing with a drizzle of nicely aged olive oil and Balsamic vinegar. Re-season with a salt and pepper mill, and then garnish with fresh herb mixture and a drizzle of balsamic reduction or glaze. When grilling and cooking steak, I like to keep the focus on the integrity and flavour of the meat, and I simply use salt and a small amount of pepper and canola oil. This keeps it clean and lets the flavour of the meat stand alone. 17


inspiredPEOPLE

AARON PRITCHETT COUNTRY CHARMER HAS A BANNER YEAR BY LAURA LAVIN

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OUNTRY SINGER AARON PRITCHETT had a dream come true this summer as he took the stage, opening for superstar Garth Brooks. “It was an ultimate moment because I dreamed of that when I was 22,” recalls the BC-born country charmer, who now lives on Gabriola Island. “I had the dream of playing on stage with Garth ... and then I woke up.” Prichett’s summer has been filled with highlights as he toured the country with his latest album The Score. In addition to opening two shows for Brooks in Saskatchewan, his single Dirt Road In ‘Em became the top Canadian song on the country charts; and in July, The Score hit number one in retail sales. And, the summer involved lots of travel — another highlight for Pritchett. “That’s the great thing about this industry and what I do,” he says. “I wanted to be an actor when I was a kid and sort of strived to do that up until my teens. But I don’t think I could have handled it because I can’t stand still.” Pritchett, who has been writing and singing for more than two decades, says getting out on the road with his band and connecting with fans is what keeps him going. “I’m a bit of a traveller; I need to travel. With this career I get to do that. I get to go all over the country, sometimes overseas,

sometimes down to the States and truthfully that’s what I love doing.” He adds: “I love the aspect of getting to the hotel, throwing your stuff down, going to do your sound check; next day move on to somewhere else.” And all this just adds to the joy of coming home, he says. “That’s the beauty of living on Gabriola — having that ability to decompress in one spot and know that I’m going to stay there a little while.” Earlier this year, Pritchett bought into Gabriola’s Silva Bay Pub, where he and his family have lived for the last four years. “It’s a blast,” he says. “When I’m home I actually bartend.” The 45 year old hasn’t spent much time behind the bar lately; he’s been busy promoting The Score, a tribute to his 20-year recording career. (“It’s been 20 years since I released that first single and record in 1996, so I thought that makes sense — a score is 20 years.”) “When we first opened I was working all the time and bartending was a lot of fun,” he says. “I’ve only been home a couple days at a time the last few months, which is kind of sad. I miss bartending and I miss that sort of atmosphere of hanging out with a bunch of friends and meeting a lot of new people as they come in. It’s a ton of fun when you’re doing it.” When he’s not behind the bar, he still loves performing. Pritchett

“HAVING THIS RESURGENCE, I GUESS YOU COULD SAY, OF SUCCESSES, IS A LITTLE SURPRISING I HAVE TO ADMIT, BUT AT THE SAME TIME VERY WELCOME.”

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has been playing music for 25 years, recording his first album, Young In Love, 20 years ago; CMT has been airing his videos for almost as long. Two decades back, Vancouver’s JRFM played the title track from Young In Love to promote one of his live shows at a local bar. “I was playing in the clubs back then with my band and they said, ‘Oh this guy’s gonna be at Gabby’s Country Cabaret in Langley and he’s got one song that we’re gonna play for ya,’ — and it was once that they played it,” he recalls with a chuckle. His career really took off in 2002 with the release of the single Consider This when he was 32. “I got started kind of late to be honest. They were looking for younger people. Thankfully they accepted me and fans kept coming to the shows. Now I just try to put out as much high energy at my shows as I can. I think that’s what keeps them coming.” Pritchett’s produced several top five singles and a couple of number one videos. “Doing this at this age — it’s not like I’m superold or anything — but I’ve been around quite a while and having this resurgence, I guess you could say, of successes, (it’s) a little surprising I have to admit, but at the same time very welcome.” His music is influenced by the likes of Motown stars Smokey

Robinson, James Brown and Stevie Wonder along with Van Morrison and Elvis Presley. “Elvis Presley was my very first influence in music and I try to take that into, not only my recorded music, but also my live show and it’s always been that way,” he says. “I remember being six years old and just admiring that Elvis could do that. He could captivate everybody, he got all of our attention.” Pritchett fans know he’s also influenced by the heavy rock of the ‘70s and ‘80s. “I’ve always been that edgier, country guy. I remember when I first got into the industry and a guy said, ‘Man, you’re like the Bruce Springsteen of country.’ I consider that a compliment.” Opening for Brooks this spring, he says, was definitely among the high points of the last two decades. “That was one of the major highlights. I think the biggest crowds that I played for was 35,000 people and the first time that I ever heard a big crowd sing back Hold My Beer to me was probably another one of the greatest moments of my career … When I heard that back, I just went, ‘Wow, you know, I’ve done okay. I’m going to be okay for the next few years — I can feed my kids,’” he laughs. Pritchett is a huge fan of social media; connect with him on Twitter and Instagram @AaronPritchett and on Facebook @ aaronpritchettofficial

I’VE ALWAYS BEEN THAT EDGIER, COUNTRY GUY. I REMEMBER WHEN I FIRST GOT INTO THE INDUSTRY AND A GUY SAID, ‘MAN, YOU’RE LIKE THE BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN OF COUNTRY.’

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HOT PROPERTIES

Island

Allure

BEAUTIFUL GABRIOLA RETREAT MARKS A MASSIVE LEAP FORWARD IN ENERGY EFFICIENCY BY TESS VAN STRAATEN PHOTOS BY DIRK HEYDEMANN

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S

ITUATED ON TOP OF A long bluff on a gorgeous Gulf Island overlooking the Salish Sea, sits one of the most energy efficient homes in Canada. “This is the new definition of a high-end home,” says Pheasant Hill Homes co-owner Jason Schmidt of the state-of-the-art luxury residence with a very small environmental footprint. The 3,300-square-foot custom Gabriola Island house with a modern linear design was completed in 2015 by Nanaimo-based Pheasant Hill Homes. Designed by architectural technologist David Kominek of DRK Design, it’s one of the first homes in this part of the world to be built to the new ‘passive home’ standard. “A passive house uses only about 10 to 15 per cent of the energy that a typical new home constructed today would use, so that’s a remarkable improvement.” says Schmidt. “While the energy savings are impressive, another tangible benefit is the increased comfort — the even, constant temperature in a passive home is hard to appreciate until you’ve experienced it.” For the homeowners, a retired couple who moved to the island after more than 40 years in Horseshoe Bay, finding the right spot to build — and the extensive planning process — were 26

TOGETHER WITH NATURAL STONE, THIS SUBSTANTIAL AND GRACEFUL TIMBER FRAME FEATURES OAK PEGS AND A QUALITY OF CONSTRUCTION THAT IS RARE IN TODAY’S BUILDING. years in the making. “We traversed the Gulf Islands for five to six years to find the lot,” explained the couple, who asked not to be identified. “It was paramount for us to face due south and to have a view and to take advantage of the light in both summer and winter.” Natural light floods the home, helping to warm it in the cooler months. Following passive house building principles, it’s also shaded by overhangs and trees to reduce solar heat gain in


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Optional Feature. Model shown: 2016 Discovery Sport HSE Luxury *Price shown is manufacturer Suggested Retail Price for the Discovery Sport SE. Supplies are limited. Excludes Freight charges, a $595 dealer documentation fee, an optional $385 Global-I fee and taxes, all due at signing. Retailer price, terms and vehicle availability may vary. See Land Rover Victoria or call 250 475 3313 † for qualifications complete ©2016 Land*Price Rovershown NorthisAmerica, LLC.Suggested Retail Price for the Discovery Sport SE.Supplies are limited. Excludes $ D & D Charge destination/ Optional Feature.and Model Shown: details. Discovery Sport Jaguar HSE Luxury Manufacturer handling charge, tax, title, license, and retailer fees, all due at signing, and optional equipment. Retailer price, terms and vehicle availability may vary. See your Land Rover Victoria or call 2504753313 for qualifications and complete details. ©2015 Jaguar Land Rover North America, LLC


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summer, yet it’s far enough back to allow light in when the sun is lower in winter. From a “Passivhaus”point of view, it was imperative to develop a good design, notes the male homeowner, who was very involved in the design process. And when they started, there were only a handful of experts in Canada. “So I talked to them all,” he says. The design and layout was inspired by the beauty of the West Coast. Using lighter, watery colours to reflect the outside environment, the homeowners’ vision was to bring the outside in. “I’d seen a house on Bowen a few years ago where you could stand in the middle of the house and see the view all around — and I loved that,” the female homeowner says. “We’re surrounded by arbutus and Douglas fir trees, so what I really wanted to do was bring that in the house. That’s why the windows, which are aluminum on the outside, are clear pine on the inside.” The kitchen sits at the centre of the house and a stunning Brazilian granite was chosen for the countertop. The specially designed cabinets are “blue corn” — a custom colour that’s grey with blue undertones. “I was worried grey in the centre of the home might be dark but I lived with cream cabinets for 25 plus years and I needed a change,” she explains. “I wanted something that would ground the room.”

Maple hardwood in “champagne” runs throughout the main living areas and there’s plush carpet in the master suite, which is located in the opposite wing of the house for privacy. Above the garage is a two-bedroom guest suite and there’s also an extra shower on the garage level for when the homeowners come back from the beach or kayaking. “We learned from our other house after having to trek upstairs to the shower when we were wet or muddy from the garden,” she laughs. However, what makes this threebedroom, three-and-a-half-bath home most unique are the pre-fabricated exterior wall and roof panels, built offsite in a factory. They’re packed full of cellulose insulation and then carefully air sealed, which results in an incredibly airtight home — about five times more airtight than a typical new build — and with double or triple the R-values. Even the panel construction, which is computerized, results in less wood waste. But with panels built in Pemberton by BC Passive House and special aluminum-clad wood windows that are triple-glazed with dual layers of low-e coatings shipped from Ireland, the planning process took a lot longer to make sure everything was right. “It took close to a year to finish the design and then we had a small replica model made so we could see it in three dimensional form.” Building on a small island can be challenging enough,

“IT TOOK CLOSE TO A YEAR TO FINISH THE DESIGN AND THEN WE HAD A SMALL REPLICA MODEL MADE SO WE COULD SEE IT IN THREE DIMENSIONAL FORM.”

(250) 940-3127 | Table21.ca

777 Douglas Street, Victoria, BC 29


“THE USE OF A NATURAL WOOD PRODUCT ON THE CEILING ADDS A RICHNESS AND WARMTH TO THE SPACE THAT IS VERY INVITING.”

30


especially when at least one ferry route is involved in shipping supplies to the job site. And while you would think trying to send a house over in pre-fabricated sections would be even more difficult, the homeowners say it was anything but. “The panels were loaded on a truck and could be shipped anywhere — the only consideration was to make sure the height and width of the load would fit on the ferry. But really any large truck can go on the ferry,” they explain. “Once the windows were packed and put into a container they could be sent anywhere in the world so it wasn’t an issue at all.” In the end, all the meticulous planning paid off. “There are so many things we can do to lessen our impact on the earth when building a home,” Schmidt says. “In this home we incorporated on-site water collection and storage as well as installing the necessary infrastructure to allow for the addition of a photo-voltaic solar system in the future. As with all our projects, we also made every effort to select durable, high-quality materials that will be easy to maintain and that will stand the test of time.” One of the builder’s favourite features is the clear yellow cedar ceiling throughout the main areas of the house that provides a stunning canopy over the neutral white walls, helping to create a bright, calm and tranquil setting. “The use of a natural wood product on the ceiling adds a richness and warmth to the space that is very inviting,” says Schmidt. “Our talented carpenters scribed the ends of countless boards to ensure the interface with drywall was perfect because it wasn’t covered by any trim.” For the homeowners, picking a favourite feature is impossible — they love everything about this super-insulated, highly

casual dining in a high end atmosphere

DOWNTOWN NANAIMO #7 Victoria Road (250) 716-0323

firehousegrillnanaimo.com 31


“THE EVEN, CONSTANT TEMPERATURE IN A PASSIVE HOME IS HARD TO APPRECIATE UNTIL YOU’VE EXPERIENCED IT.”

energy-efficient house. “We have no water bills and a very, very low utility bill,” the woman says. “But more importantly, the house has turned out to be everything we wanted because we put so much thought into it.” Even though it’s more expensive up front, the couple hopes more people decide to build this way since passive homes are not only better for the environment and cheaper to run, but also result in extremely well-built houses. “This is absolutely the house of the future,” the husband says. “Like anything new it might take a while to catch on, but as more architects and builders come on side, more people will do it.”

SUPPLY LIST

Builder: Pheasant Hill Homes Design: DRK Design Lighting: McLaren Lighting Painting: Indigo Painting and Decorating Flooring: Pacific Rim Flooring; Wingren Floors Fireplace: Pioneer Fireplace Insulated Structural Panels: BC Passive House Kitchen: Classic Kitchen Tile work: Cornerstone Tiles Windows: Budget Glass Stonework: Glenn Houle Masonry Exterior cedar: Weatherwise Cedar Products Specialty Lumber: Canadian Bavarian

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TALKING WITH TESS

34


A CUT ABOVE DESIGNING AN ECO-FRIENDLY FUTURE, ONE STITCH AT A TIME BY TESS VAN STRAATEN PHOTOS BY DON DENTON

F

OR LADYSMITH’S NIKKI MACCALLUM, sewing is her passion. “I love sewing, I love fabrics and I love working with beautiful fabrics and creating things,” says MacCallum, the visionary behind NikkiDesigns. “My mother taught me how to sew when I was a little girl and I‘ve been designing and sewing ever since.” Yet surprisingly, this mother of three never intended to start her own custom-crafted home décor business. She was working as a seamstress and clothing designer when she tried to buy a new duvet cover more than a decade ago. The first time MacCallum washed it, it shrunk and twisted and was no longer usable. “Being a seamstress, I knew exactly what had happened — the fabric hadn’t been cut on the grain,” MacCallum explains. “When items are mass-produced, this type of care and detail is often overlooked. It’s gotten so bad people aren’t surprised anymore when stuff falls apart.”

35


Nikki MacCallum of NikkiDesigns in her home studio.

36


MacCallum decided to take matters into her own hands — literally — designing and sewing her own duvet cover. But first, she extensively researched fabrics to find one that would be comfortable to sleep in but strong enough to last through numerous washings. “The more I read about all of the chemicals and pesticides used to grow cotton, the more determined I became to use organic fabrics,” she says. “I discovered that hemp, the strongest fabric known to man — it’s 10 times stronger than cotton — is environmentally friendly and doesn’t need chemical fertilizers or pesticides to grow. It’s also naturally mould and mildew resistant, gets softer with every wash and can be dyed naturally in beautiful colours.” The duvet cover was such a success, MacCallum decided to open her own store on Etsy and soon discovered there was a big demand for quality, hand-crafted goods. “The first year I sold six things, the next year 40 and by the third year it really started to take off,” says MacCallum, who launched her own website (nikkidesigns.ca) and now sells hand-made curtains, blinds, bedding and décor items all over the world. With business booming, the 52-year-old employs five people and is opening her first studio, which will have open houses and be by-appointment in Ladysmith.

“I think the timing is really good for me to have this space so people can drop in,” MacCallum says. “A big challenge in growing the business has been finding good sewers. I’m lucky I have skilled sewers working for me but it’s a lost art.” Another challenge was learning how to do online sales when it was still a relatively new phenomenon. “There was no course to take and no one teaching that 10 years ago,” MacCallum jokes. But one of the biggest learning curves for this entrepreneur was one that everyone faces — work/life balance — which is particularly challenging for people running their own business. “Having your own business is always a roller coaster and work/ life balance is a big challenge. You have to know when to quit and not reply to another email because it’s important to have a life,” MacCallum says. “Sometimes I wish I’d done this when I was younger, but the timing was really good because it took off when my youngest daughter left the house so I could really focus on the business.” For MacCallum, who still does all her own fabric cutting because it’s so crucial to a good outcome, the biggest business lesson has been not to get discouraged. “As a business owner, you always have days where everything goes wrong and people complain and it’s all up to you — the

“THE FIRST YEAR I SOLD SIX THINGS, THE NEXT YEAR 40 AND BY THE THIRD YEAR IT REALLY STARTED TO TAKE OFF.”

3 LOCATIONS

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Victoria

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Nanaimo

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buck stops with you — but you can’t take things personally,” MacCallum advises. “You have to let it go and you can’t let it get to you.” Initially, MacCallum admits she tried to do everything herself, which was a big mistake. “I learned to hire people to do the jobs I wasn’t an expert in so that I could concentrate on doing what I do best and on growing the business.” MacCallum’s two biggest markets are New York and California and the most popular product at NikkiDesigns is roman shades — the company tells people how to measure and sends fabric swatches — followed by curtains and bedding. All of the fabrics used — most often a hemp blend with organic cotton or silk — are natural and eco-friendly, and MacCallum says she’d like to see hemp become more widely used in society given all of its benefits. “We know that eating organic food is the right thing to do so doesn’t it make sense that using organic fabrics is also better for our environment and better for our health?” asks MacCallum, who welcomed her first grandchild a year ago. “You don’t want sheets and bedding and window coverings that could off-gas potentially harmful chemicals and hurt your family.” But MacCallum is most careful of the fact that everything at NikkiDesigns is hand-cut one at a time and fabrics are preshrunk to make sure there are no duvet disasters like the one that inspired her to start the business. “It’s the little things people don’t know about that make all the difference.”

“THE MORE I READ ABOUT ALL OF THE CHEMICALS AND PESTICIDES USED TO GROW COTTON, THE MORE DETERMINED I BECAME TO USE ORGANIC FABRICS.” Savoury Food Creations & Specialty Cocktails

250.751.0922 bcinteriordesigngroup.com 200 - 4311 Boban Drive Nanaimo, BC

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refreshingly local™ COAST BASTION HOTEL 11 BASTION STREET, NANAIMO BC 250-824-0167 WWW.MINNOZ.COM


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Distiller James Marinus,left, with owner Patrick Evans at Shelter Point Distillery.

40


FEATURE STORY

A WEE DRAM OF GLORY WHISKY BOTTLED WITH SUNSETS AND SEA AIR BY CHELSEA FORMAN PHOTOS BY NIK WEST, COURTESY SHELTER POINT DISTILLERY

41


“I CAN SHOW YOU THE FIELD IT COMES FROM … EVERY BOTTLE HAS A GREAT STORY,”

A

CREATIVE PULSE FLOWS THROUGH the forests and rivers, and the towns and cities of Vancouver Island — it gently shakes those who live here to embrace their artistic nature, individuality and dreams. Just south of Campbell River, I discover a perfectly quaint winding road that leads to an unassuming barn-inspired structure with a timber-trussed roof. Beautiful and splendid to the unknowing eye, the building is the motherland to a staggeringly impressive, imaginatively refined dream brought to life by one man and his family. This place is Shelter Point Distillery. How is a distillery such a magical and wondrous place? First, of course, it produces artisanal alcohol. But beyond that, Shelter Point Distillery pairs a fantastic atmosphere with an equally great story. Raised a dairy farmer, Patrick Evans founded the distillery in 2011 on 380 acres of one of Vancouver Island’s last remaining seaside farmlands. For Evans, founding a whisky distillery wasn’t so much about timing, or being a whisky aficionado, but simply seeing an opportunity and capitalizing on it.

He says it was a simple formula: “How do you value agriculture to the highest degree? Well, one acre of land produces 800 litres of alcohol, or 2,700 bottles of whisky. On Vancouver Island, no one is doing that.” Being a farmer, Patrick is concerned about the ingredients, care and quality that go into his product. “I can show you the field it comes from … every bottle has a great story,” he says. And what sets Shelter Point whisky apart from other Canadian whiskys? “The unofficial ingredients — sunsets and sea air,” Evans says. Both listed are on the bottles themselves. The oceanfront property is composed of a medley of streams, a river with running salmon, wetlands, overgrown forests and, of course, barley fields. Wildlife is plentiful, ranging from soaring bald eagles, grazing deer and lumbering black bears. Shelter Point Distillery is a family-operated, artisanal distillery, focusing on quality over quantity, coexisting with nature and sourcing locally.

THE SCOT IN ME COMES ALIVE AS THE SMOOTH LIQUID HITS MY BELLY WITH A HEAT THAT HAS WARMED MY ANCESTORS FOR GENERATIONS.

42


For Evans, his whisky is not so much barley, distilled and bottled. It is a West Coast atmosphere, a mosaic of land, wildlife and people, and a wholesome island lifestyle, captured and bottled. As I wander through the distillery, I find it so marvelous, my mind compares the interior to Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory. In the centre of the building there are two six-metre-high copper stills — custom made from Scotland — which have a near animated aesthetic to them. These quarter-inch-thick stills are made from copper because unlike other metals, it extracts sulphur, which enhances sipping smoothness. Beams of light shine through row windows drawing the eye to the locally sourced stone and lumber supporting the soaring ceiling above. A fountain of water in the distillery trickles quietly in the background adding tranquility to the already pristine west coast vibe. I am introduced to James Marinus, a master distiller hailing from Scotland. James explains the science behind distilling whisky in such a poetic way that I actually understand it. He says Shelter Point Distillery uses a single grain approach to make its whisky, meaning the barley used in every bottle is grown right on the family farm and never blended. The distillery also uses pure spring water derived from a mountain-fed aquifer beneath the farm. Marinus explains that the heavy smell of whisky distilling in the air is what the Scottish call “the angels’ share.” Whisky is forever romanticized for me in this simple statement. Evans leads the way out of the distillery to an awaiting quad. I climb aboard and rip off onto the property’s sprawling acreage. The quad goes surprisingly fast as we cut along the edge of the

barley fields, through deep woods, along the ocean, and finally into a clearing in the woods. When we stop I am breathless and my hair is tousled with the salt of the Salish Sea air. Before me sits sprawling views of the barley, while a warm breeze blows from the ocean behind, and a cool shade lingers from the great fir trees above. The mix of pleasant sensations is irresistible and I begin to understand what Shelter Point whisky is about — what it is they are actually bottling. As I take a seat at a round table set with a bottle of whisky

DEFINING SOCIAL

SOCIALHOUSE /sōSHəl/ /hous/

E nglish noun

1. A hybrid of an “upscale casual dining” + “neighbourhood pub” 2. A place to feel comfor table, relaxed and at home 3. A place to meet, eat, drink and socialize 4. A place to star t the day or shut down the night

brownssocialhouse.com

BrownssocialHouse Nanaimo North 250-933-6641

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Soft furnishings, specializing in organic fabric

email: nikki@nikkidesigns.ca text: 250 616 7221 phone: 250 924 5679

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YOUR NATURAL CHOICE FOR STONE

Shelter Point Distillery owner Patrick Evans.

K2 Stone Victoria 250.727.7625

44

www.K2STONE.com

K2 Stone Nanaimo 250.722.2420

and glasses for tasting, it is a perfect moment, in a perfect place. As whisky takes five years to mature, I am just in time on my visit to the distillery to taste the inaugural batch. After learning all parts of its story I am moved and honoured to be sipping it. The Scot in me comes alive as the smooth liquid hits my belly with a heat that has warmed my ancestors for generations. My gosh, it is a good dram. As we hop back on the quad, I wonder what has kept the distillery going in the five years leading up to the celebratory first batch of whisky. While we buzz back up to the distillery, past a raspberry field and a couple of grazing deer, Evans talks about the Shelter


Point varietal of vodka, which it began producing and selling immediately after the distillery’s launch in 2011. Back in the distillery, I see the spread of vodkas, which offers an impressive lineup of flavours. I hem and haw, trying to select the ones I want to try like a child trying to pick a flavour of ice cream on a hot summer’s day. I end up going with maple (Christmas morning in my mouth) and chocolate (hello, new post break-up remedy). All too soon it is time to depart from Shelter Point Distillery, but I feel inspired by the tenacity with which Patrick Evans made a big dream come to life. I also feel all around warm inside… although I’m pretty sure that part is just the whisky. 45


HERITAGE FASHION IS BACK. CLASSIC SILHOUETTES IN TRADITIONAL FABRICS AND RICH IN DEEP COLOURS ARE UPDATED FOR FALL 2016. PEA COATS, TWEEDS, KNITS AND SUEDE HAVE RETURNED WITH CHARMING TWISTS IN COLOUR, PRINTS AND CUTS. FOLLOW BOULEVARD ON A TRIP TO THE CROW & GATE PUB FOR THE BEST FALL FASHION NORTH OF THE MALAHAT.

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On her: Long knit cardigan ($175) made in Canada by Putorti; diamond gradiant knit “thinnies” ($135) and “Adele” blouse ($109) made in Canada by Lisette L; silver cuff ($30) Ethel and Myrtle; all from KC’s Boutique and Petites. On him: Wool pea coat ($230) by Originals by Jack & Jones; Oxford shirt ($259) by 7 for all mankind; dark jeans ($298) by 7 for all mankind; all from NYLA Fresh Thread.

Upper Longwood Station 1-5771 Turner Road, Nanaimo 250-751-7799 • www.kcsboutique.ca 46


FASHION

COUNTRY CLASSIC

TEXT AND PHOTOS BY LIA CROWE

47


Shirt ($115) by Velvet; skirt ($109) by Kooi Knitwear and ring ($130) all from Fabrications; blue suede boots ($350) by Mjus from Cardino’s Shoes. 48


Top ($129) by InWear, jeans ($179) by Mac Jeans, felt hat ($79) by InWear and silver and crystal necklace ($198), all from Fabrications

49


On her: “Gaucho” pants ($143) by Frank Lyman, white tunic ($158) by Joseph Ribkoff and bracelet ($37.50) by Zsiska, all from Close To You; felt hat ($79) by InWear from Fabrications; black loafers ($240) by Gabor from Cardino’s Shoes. On him: Shawl collar pullover ($155) by Garcia Jeans and vintage-aged jeans ($295) by Fidelity Denim from NYLA Fresh Thread; boots ($170) by Kenneth Cole Reaction at Cardino’s Shoes. 50


Cowl neck jersey tunic ($175) by Joseph Ribkoff from KC’s Boutique and Petites; black loafers ($240) by Gabor from Cardino’s Shoes.

Models : Jessica Allerton and Andrew Yates Makeup and hair: Jen Clark Production and styling assistant: Sierra Lundy Photographed on location at The Crow & Gate English Pub in Cedar

51


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CENTRAL ISLAND’S FINEST REAL ESTATE

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1605 Dorcas Point

2230 Foxrun Place

Renovated rancher just steps from the sandy beach, boasting spectacular views of the Winchelsea Island Group & the strait of Georgia from all main living areas & the walls of windows. featuring a pool & over-height, huge shop, this private location is minutes from downtown Lantzville & North Nanaimo.

Walk-on waterfront acreage, in quiet, sheltered bay, with a 2,650 sqft. home with a separate 500 sqft. suite. This private home boasts a 25 ft. barrel ceiling with curved skylights, elegant marble entrance, large great room, library, music room, solarium with hot tub, all on 1.6 ac. of privacy.

This 4,100 sqft. home has been extensively rebuilt with classic features & exquisite finishings throughout. ocean views from the upper main living level, and the lower guest level features heated floors. Landscaped garden, waterfall feature.

2426 Andover Road

2700 Van Isle Road

1858 Taylor Walk

superb 0.47 of an acre level waterfront lot, with spectacular views of the Winchelsea Islands & the strait of Georgia. site prep completed, underground services to the lot line. short walk to Brickyard Bay Park, fairwind’s Golf Course & Recreation Centre & schooner Cove Marina.

Perfect for a B&B or extended family, this 5 beds, 6 baths, open plan 4,200 sqft. home on 1.2 acres of park-like grounds offers a self-contained suite. featuring solar hot water, in floor radiant heat, a 1,000 sqft. workshop/garage with 400 sqft. loft apt. Close to the beach & surrounded by luxurious homes.

This 3,788 sq. ft. country-styled family home is surrounded by nature’s landscaping. The elegant living space features 5 bedrooms, 4 bathrooms, 2 family rooms, media room, & recreation room. With RV parking, wraparound deck, separate storage unit, and a river down the path, this home has it all.

$1,499,000

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$750,000

$1,388,000

$599,000

NICKLEN | ROY MARKETING A TRAdITIoN of TRusT

anicklen@shaw.ca | www.aaronnicklen.ca 679 Memorial Ave., Po Box 1360 Qualicum Beach, BC, V9K 1T4 Parksville-Qualicum Beach Realty

Aaron Nicklen

*†

Office: 250-752-3345 Toll free: 1-800-224-5906

*Personal Real Estate Corporation

Louise Roy*, M.A.


Private Waterfront 45 Cutlass Lookout, Protection Island - $974,900 Your dreams have just come true! Captivating and architecturally pleasing Protection Island walk-on waterfront property overlooks the Strait of Georgia; surrounded by majestic coastal mountain views. Imagine your own private sanctuary in this custom built home. Enter, and prepare to be blown away with the spectacular ocean views through the extensive windows. Exquisite attention to detail is evident throughout. The kitchen is a gourmet cooks dream featuring granite countertops, stainless steel appliances and a builtin indoor grill/cooktop and gas stove - perfect for entertaining. The great room boasts vaulted cedar & post beam ceiling and a full bar. Escape to your master suite or relax in the hot tub located on the deck, as you feast your eyes on the intoxicating sunrises and sunsets. Furnishings in the home negotiable. Located just off the Nanaimo Harbour, only 5 minutes from downtown Nanaimo by boat or ferry service. The city provides water, hydro and sewer services. All measurements approximate, verify if important.Call or text Jennifer Fox to book a viewing at 778-269-2223 or email at jennifer@danmorris.ca or www.danmorris.ca.

Jennifer Fox

Cell/Txt 778-269-2223 jennifer@danmorris.ca

Time to

SELL? Each Office Independently Owned and Operated

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PERSONAL REAL ESTATE CORPORATION

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MEXICO Buy NOW on Lake Chapala! • Secure and affordable real estate • International airport 45 minutes away • Excellent medical and dental care • One of the best climates in the world • Over 100 international and Mexican restaurants • Wonderful Mexican culture, fiestas and carnivals • Learning Spanish not obligatory • Many activities and events • Fruits and veggies fresh everyday at markets • Very low cost of living and property taxes • International community, many local and expat friends

I specialize in working with clients interested in investing or relocating to one of the most desirable areas in Mexico. My ethical and professional approach to client’s individual requests and needs motivate me to offer, The Very Best Experience Available.

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Cada Oficina es de Propiedad y Operacion Independiente

Robert Bichlbauer

Asesor Inmobiliario/Canadian Realtor bichlbauer@me.com

(01152-1) 332.164.5301

Centurion Office Producer

59


460 REALTY welcomes the addition of our newest REALTOR ÂŽ

Headquarters Forbidden Plateau

Pratt Road, Coombs Nanaimo River

BRAD KNIGHT

Invermuir Road

Select Acreages Remaining 2 Nanaimo River Lots from $349,000 6 Pratt Road Lots from $239,000 3 Forbidden Plateau Lots from $299,000 2 Headquarters Lots from $339,900 2 Elkhorn Lots from $419,000

Brad is a long-time resident of Vancouver Island, having lived here for the past 35 years. He has become a fixture in the sports community, and is heavily involved in the local hockey program, donating over 25,000 hours of his time to coaching and developing young athletes.

Find your happy place!

Over the past ten years, Brad has gained a wealth of experience and industry knowledge through his involvement in various development projects. Welcome to the team, Brad – we look forward to working with you!

AGENTS WHO GO THE DISTANCE. 202-1551 Estevan Road, Nanaimo, BC V9S 3Y3 P 250.591.4601 T 855.278 5924

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1.877.239.4811


“I DON’T WANT TO BE PUT IN A BOX WHERE YOU ALWAYS MAKE THE SAME STYLE … EVERY PIECE HAS TO BE A CHALLENGE.”

Ben Verduin outside one of his home studios.

FUNCTIONAL ART VERDUIN PIECES ARE SLEEK, CONTEMPORARY ... AND USEFUL BY ANGELA COWAN PHOTOS BY DON DENTON

W

ALKING ONTO INDUSTRIAL artist Ben Verduin’s lush acre of paradise is at once relaxing and stimulating. No traffic sounds travel up from the quiet country road, a meandering hen and her brood of chicks cluck and murmur their way up the driveway and the sweet smell of

hay and horse sweat wafts over from behind the main house. At the same time, there is the sense that creativity flutters under the surface of it all — in the vintage fire truck waiting to be restored, the home-built 1952 Ford pickup merged with a Dodge Viper engine sitting in the carport, and especially in the myriad of in-progress projects and to-dos that fill up the yard. 61


Verduin and his family moved to the spot from Holland in 2001, and swiftly set about creating a haven for art and innovation at the Cowichan-based property. Fifteen years later, not only has Verduin established his own on-site gallery — the Gem ‘O the Isle — to showcase his own works, but he built himself an enormous barn-style workshop, a small but workable smithy for his teenage son and cleared a swath of meadow to create a sculpture walk around several dozen pieces from his mother, Ati Emmerik, a well-known bronze sculptor in The Netherlands. This year also marked the fifth anniversary that Verduin has 62

hosted the Shawnigan Players for a week’s worth of Shakespearean performances, merging theatre with the visual arts at his home. Having his hand in several different artistic pursuits is nothing new for Verduin; he’s never been one to stagnate in one direction for long. Throughout his life he’s moved from the family shoemaking business to locksmithing, to motorcycle racing, to designing and running a ’50s diner, to restoring and building classic cars. But despite his familial history with art, it was just two years ago that he was inspired to delve further into the world of


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contemporary functional design. “Coming from a long history in art, I felt it was time to do something with my stronger growing interest,” says Verduin. “The winter of 2014 I created a sketch book full of contemporary modern art style furniture sketches, and selected some to bring to my studio to actually build them.” Surrounded with the tang of deconstructed metal contraptions and the earthy aromas of sawdust, he spent many hours experimenting with the designs, finding out what worked on paper and what worked in reality, and playing with a mixed bag of reclaimed and repurposed materials until he had several pieces

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that emerged true to his vision. The Rosie Wine Table, for example, is part old saw table, part wild-harvested cherry wood from a tree that fell on his property and part custom-built, 360-degree fendered swivel wheels. Similarly, the Sunset Chair blends handshaped bare metal with smooth leather and the grill from an old wood stove. “It was an experiment in repurposing something,” says Verduin. “The experimental part was to learn and problem solve the blending of different materials into contemporary furniture with a strong sense of modern art and a blink to the past.” Each piece is a one-off, allowing Verduin to explore his ideas without ever getting stuck. “I don’t want to be put in a box where you always make the same style,” he says. “Every piece has to be a challenge.” He also approaches each idea with an eye to the far future. “If I set my mind to a project, I try to live in it,” he says. “To already fantasize what it would be like when it’s done, how it would be looked at in 10 or 100 years.” Moving past his experimentation with repurposing materials, Verduin next let his imagination take hold, and designed something entirely new: the Amazone Lounge Chair. Cool and smooth to the touch with a luxuriously padded burnt orange suede upholstered seat, the Amazone Chair seems to fit seamlessly into any environment with its gentle curves and seamless lines. It’s airy, with an almost aviation-inspired aura, and is without a doubt Verduin’s favourite creation thus far. “I just started sketching, and suddenly there were the lines that I was looking for to build my first designer’s chair,” he says with a smile. “It’s as close as I could get it to perfect.” It’s also the only piece that he’s decided to duplicate. He plans to build a series of 11 chairs, each with its own distinct coloured suede upholstery to preserve their individuality and value as art pieces. “If I give all of them their own special colour, they’re all one of a kind,” he says. “Each chair has its own personality.” The 11th and final chair will veer slightly from the pattern and be a commemorative piece, built from aluminum with its seat a mosaic of all the other colours. 64

“I JUST STARTED SKETCHING, AND SUDDENLY THERE WERE THE LINES THAT I WAS LOOKING FOR TO BUILD MY FIRST DESIGNER’S CHAIR. IT’S AS CLOSE AS I COULD GET IT TO PERFECT.” Despite only having begun his art pursuits two years ago, Verduin is already making waves in the art world. Along with establishing his own gallery, his pieces are exhibited at the Lantzville Art Gallery, and the Amazone Chair, the Rose Table and Sunset Chair were accepted into this year’s Sooke Fine Arts Show. The next step is to approach interested parties in New York, Seattle and London, but Verduin wanted to set down some local roots first. “The number of talented artists on Vancouver Island is overwhelming, and this way we hope to become part of this

island art community.” In the meantime, Verduin is constantly coming up with new ideas for pieces as he balances family time with the workload of managing a running farm. But he wouldn’t have it any other way. “I don’t think there’s a day that I’m bored. Tired, yes,” he laughs. “We’re just working hard, playing and enjoying life and of course creating art.” And no matter how busy he gets, the family motto – carved into a sign that sits outside the front door – is always there to remind everyone of what’s truly important: “There’s always time for a coffee.”


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FOOD & DRINK

VIBRANT VEGGIES UNSUNG HEROES OF THE FOOD WORLD MAKE HOLIDAY SIDES SIZZLE TEXT BY CHEF HEIDI FINK PHOTOS BY DON DENTON

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T

HE FALL AND WINTER SEASON IS my favourite time of year to savour a personal vegetable heaven. While the most of us are drooling over crisp Thanksgiving turkey skin and grandmother’s sausage stuffing, I am not so quietly thrilling over a roasted Brussels sprout or a perfectly glazed sweet potato. Vegetables are stunning in their variety of colours, flavours and textures, yet are often relegated boring second string in the symphony of dinner. This can, and should, easily change. Whether used for starters, sides, or (yes) mains, good vegetables effortlessly add charisma and interest to any holiday table. The key is to choose your vegetables wisely, and to prepare them in such a way as to let their best qualities shine. Inspire yourself with the colour of a butternut squash, the robust flavour of a Brussels sprout, the texture of fresh sweet corn. Simple, flavourful, rustic: those are my goals, and they provide elegance of their own accord. The fall and early winter season is a time of beauty and abundance for local vegetables and I love to make the most of it for family gatherings. Just imagine: a crisp caramelized wedge of grilled cauliflower infused with the flavour of salted butter; a sweet and tender slice of squash enhanced with a glaze of citrus; or a garlic-laced floret of bright green broccoli. Delicious enough to stand alone and humble enough to play a supporting role, well-prepared seasonal vegetables are the unsung heroes of the food world. Here are a few ideas to get you started on a lip-smacking season. Garlic Butter Balsamic Roasted Brussels Sprouts 1 lb Brussels sprouts

5 Tbsp unsalted butter 4 large cloves garlic ½ tsp salt ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper 1 to 2 Tbsp good quality balsamic vinegar, or more, to taste Preheat oven to 425 F. Cover a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Peel and slice the garlic, and with the butter in a small pot, heat over medium or medium-low heat for several minutes until the butter has melted and the garlic has turned golden (be careful not to burn the garlic!). Strain the butter, saving both the butter and the garlic separately. Meanwhile, rinse Brussels sprouts and trim off any brown or yellow outer leaves. Cut sprouts lengthwise through the stem into 3 or 4 lengthwise slices, depending on size of sprouts. Very tiny sprouts can be cut in half. Some small leaves will fall off and that’s okay. Place the cut sprouts and fallen leaves into a bowl and toss with the strained butter, salt and pepper. Spread out in a single layer on the baking sheet and place in preheated oven. Roast for 20 to 25 minutes, stirring once during cooking time, until sprouts are browned and smell nutty and delicious. Remove from oven and immediately drizzle sprouts with the balsamic vinegar, starting with one tablespoon and tasting as you go. Mix the sprouts well on the baking sheet, so that the sprouts are coated with the balsamic. Season with additional salt and pepper to taste, and then transfer to a preheated serving bowl. Top with the golden garlic slices (crumble the garlic a bit, if you wish) and serve immediately.

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Garlic Butter Balsamic Brussels sprouts can be kept warm in a low oven for up to 30 minutes. Glazed Acorn Squash Acorn squash begs to be sliced into wedges, roasted and glazed with a sweet-spicy glaze. No peeling around those ridges to worry about. 2 acorn squash 1 Tbsp vegetable oil 1 tsp salt Glaze: 5 Tbsp pure maple syrup or cane syrup 2 Tbsp butter 1 tsp hot sauce of your choice (Franks, Sriracha, etc.) Preheat oven to 375 F. Line a lasagna pan or roasting pan with parchment (if desired). Place syrup in a small pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer about 2 minutes, until syrup has thickened slightly. Remove from heat and whisk in butter and hot sauce until smooth. Cut acorn squash lengthwise through stem. Scoop out the seeds and strings in the cavity. Slice the squash into wedges, following the natural squash ridges as much as possible. You will 70

have about 10 slices per squash. Toss squash wedges with oil, salt and 3 Tbsp of the glaze, making sure to coat the pieces well. Place them in the prepared pan. The squash pieces can be on their sides. Cover the pan with foil, but leave it a bit loose in places, to allow steam to escape. Place in the oven and roast 30 to 35 minutes, flipping the squash pieces halfway through baking. When the squash is ready, remove from oven and brush wedges all over with glaze. Return to the oven, this time uncovered, and bake 5 to 7 minutes. Remove from oven, flip squash pieces and apply more glaze. Return to oven and roast 5 to 8 minutes longer, until squash is completely tender and glaze is golden. Brush any remaining glaze on the squash wedges as soon as they come out of the oven. Serve immediately, or keep warm in a low oven up to 30 minutes. Roasted Mushrooms with Swiss Chard and Caramelized Onion This can be made in advance, even the day before, and reheated before serving. 2 large red or yellow onions, diced 6 Tbsp unsalted butter Ÿ tsp salt 1 Tbsp minced fresh thyme or 1 tsp dried thyme ½ tsp dried tarragon (optional)


⅓ cup water or broth 1¼ lb button mushrooms, quartered 1 Tbsp oil ½ tsp EACH salt and freshly ground pepper 1 large or 2 small bunches fresh chard (or spinach) ¾ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese (optional) Preheat oven to 375°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Melt butter in a large skillet. When hot, add the diced onion. Sauté until translucent, 6 to 8 minutes, then turn down the heat, add the ¼ tsp of salt and sauté gently for 20 to 40 minutes, or until caramelized (golden brown and sweet-tasting). Do not rush this process. Let the onions do their sweet thing slowly as long as they need to. If they appear to be burning, turn down the heat, but carry on. When the onions appear to be done, add the thyme and tarragon. When everything is fragrant, turn off the heat and add one third cup of water or broth, scraping any caramelized bits from the bottom and making the onions a bit saucy. Meanwhile, toss mushrooms with the oil, the salt and half the pepper, place in one layer on the parchment-lined baking sheet and roast in the oven 20-25 minutes until browned around the edges. Remove from oven; scrape mushrooms along with any of their juices into the skillet with the onions. Set aside until close to serving time. Meanwhile, thoroughly wash and stem chard (or spinach). Chop coarsely. Cook over medium heat in a covered pot with the water that clings to their leaves, using a bit of additional water

only if necessary to prevent the leaves from burning. When the chard is wilted but still green, remove from heat and add to the skillet with the onions and mushrooms. Mix everything together well, making sure to break up any clumps of chard or onion. Season to taste with salt and pepper. To heat for serving time: either heat in the skillet on the stovetop, or transfer to a casserole and heat in the oven. Transfer to a serving dish and sprinkle the top with a liberal grating of Parmesan cheese, if desired. Spiced Cauliflower (oven-roasted or grilled) Grilled vegetables are a revelation to anyone who hasn’t tried them. Crisp caramelized edges, concentrated flavour, enticing appearance … I have made this both on the grill and in the oven. Use whatever method works best with the rest of your menu. 1 head cauliflower (about 2 lbs) 1 tsp salt 4 Tbsp oil, divided 2½ tsp ground coriander 2 tsp turmeric ½ tsp garam masala ½ tsp ground cumin ½ tsp cayenne ½ tsp ground ginger ½ tsp garlic powder 1 lemon or lime, cut into wedges If using the oven, preheat to 425 F and cover a baking sheet with parchment paper. If using a grill, preheat the grill. One half

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Fresh Corn Salad This salad is at its best with very fresh, very flavourful sweet corn. The dressing is very simple and lets the corn shine. I find this dish to be a refreshing addition to a traditional Thanksgiving spread. NOTE: feel free to substitute leftover grilled corn for the boiled corn. Salad: 12 cobs of fresh sweet corn, shucked 4 green onions, thinly sliced on the diagonal 2 large ripe tomatoes, seeded and chopped ½ large bunch cilantro, roughly chopped 1 avocado (optional) Dressing: ½ cup extra-virgin olive oil Zest of ½ lime, finely minced or grated ¼ cup fresh lime juice (from 2 fresh limes) 72

½ tsp salt, or more, to taste 1 tsp dark brown sugar OR honey 1 clove garlic, minced or pressed Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Drop in the 12 cobs of corn, return to a boil and cook for 1 or 2 minutes. Use tongs to remove the cobs and let them cool until you can touch them comfortably. (Variation: grill the corn instead!) Meanwhile, mix the dressing ingredients together in a small jar. Tighten lid and shake the jar vigorously to blend dressing well. (You can also whisk the ingredients together in a bowl.) In a medium-large bowl, mix together three-quarters of the dressing and all the green onions. Using a sharp knife, cut all the kernels of corn off the cooked cobs directly into the bowl with the dressing. Once you have cut the kernels off, use the back of the knife to scrape along the cobs and push all the corn germ into the bowl. Add the tomato and the cilantro. Mix well. Taste and add more dressing and/or salt and/or lime juice. The salad can be refrigerated up to 24 hours before serving (although it tastes best served within 4 hours). Decorate the top of the salad with slices of avocado and sprigs of cilantro. Squeeze a bit more lime juice over the avocado slices to prevent them from going brown. Quick Pickled Beets These pickled beets are very sharp and garlicky, providing a big hit of flavour and colour to any holiday spread. Keeping the beets unpeeled with the stem and root intact prevents colour bleed while cooking. This recipe can be made up to one week before serving. 5 large or 10 small beets, (about 1 lb) unpeeled and with 1 cm of the stem and root intact ½ cup white wine vinegar ½ cup water 1 inch of fresh ginger, peeled and sliced thin ½ tsp mustard seeds ½ tsp salt, or more, to taste 2 to 3 cloves garlic, peeled and sliced very thin ¼ cup minced fresh dill, optional Steam or bake the beet whole, until barely pierce-able with a knife — 25 to 35 minutes for steamed beets, and 50- 60 minutes for baked beets. Remove from heat and let cool until easy to handle. Rub skins away (I use latex gloves) and cut off the stem and root. Cut larger beets in halves or quarters. Slice beets into ¼-inch slices and place in a bowl. Meanwhile, combine the white wine vinegar, water, ginger slices, mustard seeds, salt and one clove of the garlic. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer one minute. Remove from heat and let cool. When cool, add the remaining garlic slices. Pour the vinegar mixture over peeled and sliced beets and stir well to mix. Transfer beet mixture, with all of its juices, to a Mason jar and place in the fridge for at least 24 hours, up to one week, before serving. Garnish with chopped fresh dill, if desired.

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of the grill should have a medium-high fire; the other half should have a low fire. Remove core from cauliflower and cut into medium-large florets. Place in a large bowl. Add the salt and 1 Tbsp of the oil; toss and mix well to coat the florets evenly. If using oven: spread florets out on prepared baking sheet in a single layer. Place in the preheated oven and roast about 25 minutes, or until cauliflower has caramelized edges, stirring a couple of times during cooking. Reduce oven temperature to 375F. If using grill: place florets on the medium-high heat side of the grill, cooking them 2 to 3 minutes per side, and flipping them as needed until they have caramelized edges. As they are ready, move them to the cool side of the grill, cover, and cook about 10 or 15 minutes more. Meanwhile, mix all of the ground spices in a large bowl with the remaining 3 Tbsp of oil until evenly blended. When the cauliflower is ready, remove from oven or grill and place in the bowl. Mix well until the cauliflower is evenly coated with the spice mixture (sometimes, I add a little bit of water to the mixture to help spread the spice paste). Return coated cauliflower to the oven for 5 to 10 minutes, or the cool side of the grill for 5 to 10 minutes, until spice paste is fragrant and cooked on. Spiced cauliflower can be kept warm in a low oven up to 30 minutes.


TRAVEL FAR

PROVENCAL PERFECTION A TRIO OF DIVINE DESTINATIONS IN PROVENCE BY ANNE MULLENS

The medieval hill town of Les Baux-de-Provence near the Domaine de Manville, a member of Small Luxury Hotel brand in France. 73


N

O ONE DOES INTIMATE LUXURY hotels like the French, and the inns of Provence top them all —impeccably appointed manor houses surrounded by craggy hills, olive groves and vineyards that in some cases come up to the hotel gate. These landscapes were immortalized by the French Impressionists, who captured the region’s soft light and outstanding palette of colours. I fell in love with Provence more than 30 years ago, exploring its hill towns, castles and Roman ruins as a backpacking youth staying in hostels and dives. I’ve longed to return to explore the historic sites, sip rosé on a patio shaded by plane trees, smell once again that unmistakable air — a melange of pine trees, rosemary, thyme, sage and lavender — so distinctive it even has its own name, garrigue. Earlier this year I finally did, but in style this time, staying in Small Luxury Hotels (slh.com), a brand of 520 worldwide, independent, high-end hotels. Here are three that I visited, each an elegant five-star boutique inn with red tiles, pale ochre walls and green shutters. All have exceptional food, wine and service. They were situated about an hour from each other, like points of a triangle placed between Aix-en-Provence and Arles.

DOMAINE DE MANVILLE

A winding road and landscape of olive groves, oak and almond trees leads to this hidden gem, a 100-acre estate set in a valley in the Alpilles regional park. It is right below the medieval hill

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town of Les Baux-de-Provence, one of the most beautiful — and most visited —historic villages in all of France. From the resort’s eco-responsible 18-hole golf course you can look straight up to the ruins of Les Baux’s castle walls, dating from the 11th to 15th centuries. But when you look down from those very same ramparts, the golf course and the hotel buildings are completely invisible — so artfully have they been designed to blend into the Provencal countryside. That same care and attention seems to have gone into every detail, from the spacious, beautifully decorated 30 main rooms and nine private villas, to the fresh daily creations of Chef Matthieu Dupuis-Baumal, to the design of the spa and lounge. Breakfast is held each morning in a charming greenhouse, called the Winter Garden and when summer comes it moves out to tables under the trees. At night, sipping our pre-dinner rosé in the bar, we were entertained by a former member of the famous Gipsy Kings, whose trio plays there regularly. My ground floor suite opened up to its own little patio and the central courtyard beyond, where plane trees arched around an inviting pool. Despite overcast weather, I couldn’t resist a few laps. Early one morning I took one of the many wellmarked hiking paths up into the limestone Alpilles. My hour-long ramble was rewarded with birds, wildflowers and stunning 360 degree views over vineyards and valleys, all the way to the Mediterranean.


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Arles is just 15 km to the southwest where you can explore the impressive Roman ruins, walk in Van Gogh’s footsteps or visit the new Van Gogh Foundation. I did all that and highly recommend it. But the highlight? Riding one of the hotel’s electric-assist bikes (hills are so fun!) over the meandering roads, seeing gorgeous stone homes nestled under craggy outcrops, breathing in that wonderful garrigue. More info: www.domainedemanville. fr/en/

DOMAINE DE FONTENILLE

hired Michelin starred chef Jerôme Faure to head the gourmet restaurant and bistro. Opening this past February, Domaine de Fontenille is an exceptional property that feels intimate and personal, as if you are a guest in a very rich friend’s gorgeous home. The windows in all the rooms look out through the plane trees, over the patio, the 18th-century fountain and classical gardens to the little hill town of Lauris, with its castle in the misty distance. Just across the road from the hotel is the winery, where 35 hectares of grapes are now under organic cultivation. In the winery tasting room you can try their red (grenache/syrah), their white (white grenache/syrah/clairette) or rosé (my favourite), or even take a course in tasting or oenology. The hotel has a spa (natch), an outdoor pool, yoga classes and nearby horseback riding. And of course the locally sourced food is heavenly; asparagus was in season and I devoured it at every meal. My favourite pastime? Sitting in the comfort of my lovely room, opening the great big French casement windows, and looking out over the gardens to the hills beyond. See www.domainedefontenille.com

“MY HOUR-LONG RAMBLE WAS REWARDED WITH BIRDS, WILDFLOWERS AND STUNNING 360 DEGREE VIEWS OVER VINEYARDS AND VALLEYS, ALL THE WAY TO THE MEDITERRANEAN.”

Successful French businessman Frédéric Biousse had climbed the height of the retail fashion world, heading up an international chain of clothing stores, but he wanted a new passion and focus. He and his partner Guillaume Foucher found it in Domaine de Fontenille, an 18th-century manor with a 17th-century vineyard, in the Luberon region of Provence, near the picturesque town of Lourmarin, about an hour north of Aixen-Provence. They revived the vines and started their own vintage; renovated the mansion into 17 boutique rooms, filled the place with art and designer furniture, created an onsite art gallery and

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LE PIGONNET

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The oldest of the three, this property has been running as a family-owned hotel since 1924, near the centre of Aix-enProvence. The 18th century mansion, with a chestnut-tree-lineddrive into its entrance, was renovated in 2013. It still has that air of refined privilege, a patina of history and tradition in its 44 rooms. It has extensive manicured gardens and grounds and in one corner is the exact spot where locally-born Impressionist painter Paul CÊzanne stood to paint the white limestone Mont Sainte Victoire in the distance, a frequent subject of his paintings. The view looks pretty much the same today. I found it easy to picture past luminaries sipping their pastis here in the charming outdoor bar. Evidently it was a favourite of opera singer Marias Callas and French actress Fanny Ardant. The centre of Aix is a 15 minute walk away where you can stroll the wide main street, Cours Mirabeau, and explore the ancient cobbled streets radiating off it, or cool down beside one of the many fountains, in this City of Fountains. One of the highlights in Arles was seeing an exhibit of British artist J.M.W. Turner’s works at the Hotel Caumont Art Centre, a beautiful 18th-century mansion that was designed and built by the chief architect for Louis XIV, the Sun King. Newly opened in 2015 after an extensive renovation, the art centre, with its tearoom, classical garden and elegant salons, is worth a visit no matter what is showing. No one would fault you, however, if you decided to simply stay at the hotel and lounge by the pool. See www.hotelpigonnet.com


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Thinking outside the teapot COOKING WITH TEA IS HEALTHY AND DELICIOUS BY PAMELA DURKIN

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HEALTH & FITNESS

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OR CENTURIES, TEA HAS BEEN valued as a comforting remedy for a variety of ailments. Now that science has confirmed tea’s health benefits, people are enjoying the pleasures of tea drinking with renewed appreciation. But intriguingly, they’re also celebrating the leaf as a delicious and über healthy culinary ingredient. Celebrity chefs, food bloggers and home cooks alike are discovering the inexhaustible ways in which tea can be used to make a plethora of irresistible dishes. The culinary use of tea is not new — in Asia tea has been used in cooking for hundreds of years. But it’s a practice Western cooks are wise to adopt. Not only does adding tea to our dishes impart wonderful flavour — it maximizes and enhances our exposure to tea’s many health-promoting compounds.

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Tea leaves from the Camellia sinensis plant are teeming with polyphenols. These beneficial compounds have antioxidant abilities, and studies show they may reduce the risk for Alzheimer’s disease, cardiovascular disease, cancer, diabetes, osteoporosis and Parkinson’s disease. If that doesn’t impress you, consider this — a recent study conducted at San Diego State University indicates the polyphenols in green tea may even ameliorate the heartdamaging effects of a high-fat, high-sugar diet. In addition to thwarting chronic disease, tea can also help keep our pearly whites healthy. Japanese researchers have identified four specific compounds in tea that help increase the acid resistance in tooth enamel and reduce the risk for gum disease.

GET COOKING There are myriad ways tea can expand your culinary repertoire. Try using the brewed liquid for poaching fish or chicken, cooking grains, or in soups, stews, gravies and marinades. The leaves can be ground and used as a rub for meats, tofu or poultry, or added to baked goods, omelettes, smoothies, spreads and dressings — the possibilities are as endless as your imagination. Once you begin cooking with tea, you’ll be delighted by its ability to impart flavour and create memorable meals.

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With over 1,000 varieties of Camellia sinensis currently available on the global market, selecting a tea for cooking can be a daunting task. Whether you choose a plain tea, or one that has been flavoured with spices, flowers or fruits, your guide should be your own taste buds and the type of dish you are preparing. One caveat — to reap optimum health benefits always select organically grown tea. Below are a few of the more popular teas used in cooking. For additional inspiration, switch on your computer because this hot culinary trend has spawned several excellent websites and blogs that feature innovative ideas for cooking with tea. A recent post from the popular site Bloglovin for example, featured several mouthwatering tea-inspired desserts, such as Black Tea Cake with Lemon Buttercream, Lemon Earl Grey


Tart and Matcha Crepes with Chocolate Ganache and Toasted Hazelnuts. Here’s a breakdown of different teas and suggested uses. • Earl Grey. This black tea, scented with citrusy Bergamot oil, is one of the most popular “culinary teas” for good reason. Try using the brewed tea in place of other liquids when cooking grains or stewing dried fruits, or adding the ground leaves to baked goods like muffins, scones and shortbread cookies. For a truly sublime application, steep an Earl Grey tea bag in melted butter or coconut oil for a few minutes — the resulting infusion is delicious drizzled over poultry and fish. • Matcha. A powdered green tea with a delicate sweet flavour, matcha pairs perfectly with other light, sweet tastes. Try it in baked goods, smoothies, frosting and cream-based dressings and dips. It also marries well with chocolate. • Assam and Ceylon. These are both assertive black teas whose brews make excellent vegan alternatives to beef stocks and gravies. Their bold punchy flavour also enhances marinades, stews and hearty bean dishes. • Oolong. A semi-fermented tea, oolong’s slightly smoky brewed leaves strike an intriguing note when added to omelettes, stirfrys, stews, frittatas, stuffing and pilafs. • Sencha. This is one of the most common types of green tea and the variety from China is slightly sweeter and better suited for cooking than its Japanese cousin. Its earthy green taste is reminiscent of spinach. The nutritious green leaves make a scrumptious addition to soups, stews, omelettes, scrambled tofu or eggs. • Jasmine. Jasmine tea refers to any white, black or green tea that is scented with the heady perfume of Jasmine flowers. The aromatic brew combines beautifully with basmati rice and is wonderful for poaching mild tasting fish like sole, or sturdy fruits like pears. • Black Chai. Any black tea blended with chai spices will make a tasty dry-rub for poultry, fish or tofu. Chai teas also lend the perfect note to banana- or coconut-based smoothies. • Ginger White. Made from the unopened buds of the Camellia sinensis plant, white tea is the least processed of all the “true teas” and has a mild, sweet taste. The ginger variety is particularly delicious. Use it to cook your morning oatmeal and top with plump raisins and a spoonful of coconut palm sugar for the perfect morning bowl.

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Mix all the sauce ingredients together in a medium sized bowl and set aside to allow flavours to blend while you prepare the turkey burgers. Heat a non-stick skillet over medium heat and add the oil, swirling it around to coat the bottom of the pan. Add the onion and sauté until soft and golden. Add the spices and garlic and cook 1 to 2 minutes more or until garlic is soft. Place the mixture in a large bowl and cool. Add the ground turkey, breadcrumbs, carrot, pistachios and mix well. Season with pepper and add beaten egg mixing with your hands to bind the mixture together. Form four uniform burger patties. Heat skillet and cook burgers on both sides until thoroughly cooked through. Serve burgers on toasted whole grain buns or stuffed in warmed pita halves and dollop generously with the minty sauce. Alternatively, serve the burgers and sauce with basmati rice or quinoa.

EARL GREY INFUSED EDAMAME QUINOA SALAD The unique flavour of Earl Grey tea enhances this colourful super-food salad. To ensure your salad is truly delicious, use a fresh, loose-leaf tea that is decidedly fragrant with the unmistakable citrusy aroma of Bergamot oil. In addition, make sure you do not over-brew the tea — the perfect steeping time for Earl Grey is 4-5 minutes. 1 cup quinoa 1 ¾ cup brewed Earl Grey tea (use 1 rounded tsp of loose leaf tea for every cup of tea)

1 cup shelled and cooked edamame beans 1 large mango peeled, pitted and chopped 2 spring onions finely diced (whites only) 5 Tbsp goji berries 1 cup baby spinach leaves (tear larger sized leaves) 1 tsp grated organic orange zest For the Vinaigrette 3 ½ Tbsp olive oil 1 Tbsp orange juice ½ Tbsp fresh lemon juice 1 small garlic clove peeled and minced ½ tsp sea salt ¼ tsp coconut palm sugar Ground black pepper to taste Place the quinoa in a fine sieve and rinse thoroughly under cold running water, rubbing the quinoa with your fingers. Transfer quinoa to a medium sized saucepan. Add the tea and bring to a boil, reducing immediately to simmer. Cover and cook for 15 minutes or until quinoa is tender but still slightly crunchy. (Do not let it get mushy!) If all the tea has not been absorbed after cooking, drain the quinoa thoroughly through a fine sieve. Place quinoa in a medium-sized bowl and allow to cool. Add edamame, onion, fruits, zest, spinach and mix well. In a small bowl add juices, garlic and seasonings, and slowly whisk in the olive oil. Pour the vinaigrette over the quinoa/ edamame salad and season with black pepper to taste.

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TRAVEL NEAR

ISLAND BLISS SALT SPRING: QUEEN OF THE SOUTHERN GULF ISLANDS BY HANS TAMMEMAGI

Garry Oaks Winery sits on a terraced 10-acre vineyard, overlooking the Burgoyne Valley on Salt Spring Island.

T

HE NEW YORK TIMES RECENTLY GAVE THE southern Gulf Islands star billing by including them as one of only two places in Canada on its vaunted list of 52 places to visit in 2016. Impressed, I resolved to explore the archipelago, and decided to start with the biggest, most famous and perhaps the quirkiest: Salt Spring Island.

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The ferry from Crofton carried me to Vesuvius and I headed straight for the Saturday Farmers’ Market, which was bursting with paintings, carvings, sculptures, fresh farm produce, pies, breads and jams. Everything laid out before me was either grown or made on the island. It was a visual and mouth-watering cornucopia. Clutching a blackberry smoothie, I sought out Janet Clouston, the project manager of “Experience the Southern Gulf Islands,”


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PHOTO BY ANDREA JOHNSON, COURTESY DESTINATION BC.

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Spot on, I thought. Since non-aboriginal settlement began in 1859, the Gulf Islands have been a refuge for those seeking a laid-back life including draft dodgers, hippie farmers, eccentrics, solitude seekers, artists, as well as the well-to-do and their glitzy waterfront estates. Salt Springers love to socialize and one of their favourite methods is by holding festivals and events, like the Apple Festival, the Music and Garlic Festival, and the Taste of Salt Spring Festival. Their fall fair lasts for two days. Once, at the Salt Spring Fall Fair, I bumped into renowned folksinger Valdy and preeminent wildlife artist Robert Bateman, two of the island’s many famous residents. Artists are drawn to this island like bees to pollen, and art galleries abound. The historic Mahon Hall in the centre of Ganges hosts theatrical performances, workshops, fundraisers and weddings, but my favourite is ArtCraft — held in the summer months — when the hall is crammed with paintings, sculptures, stained glass and pottery, all unique and idiosyncratic. Mahon Hall hosts art fairs at Christmastime too. The temperate Mediterranean climate is the mildest in Canada and supports olive groves, orchards, cheese makers and many small organic farms. I toured Garry Oak Winery and Mistaken Identity Vineyards, tippling their fine vintages.


BABAK’S

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At Salt Spring Island Vineyard, I lazed under a cobalt blue sky with a chilled bottle of Pinot Gris, a loaf of oven-warm bread and a block of goat’s cheese. Hughie and Lewey, two ducks, waddled nearby, quacking for handouts. Life was good, I thought, and still on the agenda was Gulf Islands Brewing, the island’s sole craft brewery. Exhausted, I sought a bed for the night. The choices were overwhelming with numerous inns and B&Bs, but I was drawn to the historic and elegant Hastings House on Ganges Harbour. I wasn’t disappointed. As a member of the Relais & Châteaux collection of the world’s finest hotels, it is among the most genteel and attractive resort in the Gulf Islands. Consisting of a number of charming buildings, including the historic, original island Hudson Bay post, the resort sprawls over 17 waterfront acres. Statues and sculptures stand amid the lawns and trees. Service is impeccable, the food is superb and I loved sitting with an ale in front of the fire in the Bistro, which is very British, complete with old wooden beams. The executive chef, Marcel Kauer, is talented, and happy, since most of the vegetables and herbs are grown on the property. They also run their own chickens and sheep, and drop their own crab traps in the adjacent Salish Sea. Next day I rose with the birds to get in a full day of nature. I 89


PHOTO BY ANDREA JOHNSON, COURTESY DESTINATION BC.

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sought out the Chris Hatfield trail on the northern edge of Ruckle Point Provincial Park and trekked into the lush rain forest, passing old trees whose branches were festooned with beards of bright green moss. Under a tree I found a shovel, buckets and a sign inviting hikers to dig up some gravel, fix part of the trail and bring back the empty pail on return. What a clever self-serve system for trail maintenance! I trekked down the trail to the waterfront and a wind-sheltered pebble beach. At Yeo Point I sat with my back against a sun-warmed boulder gazing at passing boats and ferries in Swanson Channel. Turning inland at Cusheon Cove, I reflected on a lumber mill that operated here from 1905 to 1928 and was once a large industrial operation with foreign ships loading at its dock. The trail followed a creek upstream. The gurgling and splashing of water grew louder until I saw rapids swirling and tumbling down moss encrusted rocks, surrounded by ferns and tall trees. I sat quietly, soaking in the spiritual scene. After a rest I drove to the top of Mount Maxwell. The view was grand and sweeping, looking down on a patchwork of farms and the sun-glistening Salish Sea dotted with dozens of islands. I

meandered along one of the numerous hiking trails, enjoying the silence and smell of the woods. My afternoon was earmarked for kayaking, for the Gulf Islands, their waters sheltered by Vancouver Island, offer some of the best in the world. With one soothing stroke following another I paddled into Ganges Harbour and stopped at one of the numerous islets. I pulled the kayak onto a sparkling white beach, a midden of clam shells left by millennia of occupation by the First Nations. Next day, I spent a blissful hour clacking balls on the Hastings House croquet lawn, before having to pack and return home. I was already planning to return and explore the rest of the southern Gulf Islands.

THE VIEW WAS GRAND AND SWEEPING, LOOKING DOWN ON A PATCHWORK OF FARMS AND THE SUNGLISTENING SALISH SEA DOTTED WITH DOZENS OF ISLANDS.

IF YOU GO

Information about the Island: saltspringmarket.com More information: hellobc.com/saltspring-island.aspx Hastings House: .hastingshouse.com Artists, artists, artists. Find them at: saltspringartistdirectory.com Hiking and trails: saltspringtnc.ca

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Chantal Kreviazuk is back on tour. 92


FRONT ROW

2016-17 SEASON

BY SHERRY CONLY

CHANTAL KREVIAZUK BACK IN THE SPOTLIGHT

A

FTER A LONG HIATUS, JUNO AWARDWINNING Canadian singer Chantal Kreviazuk is back on tour with her brand new album Hard Sail, named for the celebration of slowly built, hard won love. She performs in Nanaimo on November 1 and Courtenay the following day. Kreviazuk collaborated with husband Raine Maida of Our Lady Peace on this “very self-assured” new album. The inspiration behind the album’s title and many of its songs comes from her daily experience with love, life and hard work in creating a happy and content marriage and family life, she says. Kreviazuk spent several years out of the spotlight to raise her three sons, while song writing for other artists. “The timing was just right to get back into touring. I’ve been born again and I’m ready to get back into music. I [just] wanted several years with my last born — my third baby,” she says. Kreviazuk had been writings songs for other artists for the last few years, but knew she eventually wanted to get back into touring and promoting her own albums. “The moment I wrote the song Into Me, I knew I had an album coming,” she says. The album has a more diverse style than her previous works, such as 1999’s Colour Moving and Still, which earned Kreviazuk two Juno awards and constant radio play of her hit single Before You. This new album was a “beautiful accident,” she says. Some songs were already written and chosen, and others were sort of brewing or hanging around, forming two very different sounds, such as the title track Hard Sail and Meant for This. Husband Maida was able to bridge the two moods and sounds together to form the album. “It wasn’t easy, but I believed deep down that there was this arc and it was going to work,” says Kreviazuk.

For information and tickets, see the Port Theatre

MOSCOW BALLET PRESENTS BREATHTAKING SWAN LAKE Swan Lake is at the heart of every ballet company in the world, and is long hailed as the greatest ballet of all time. “The ballet brings together the ultimate in Russian ballet and the art of ballet,” says producer Akiva Talmi, of Talmi Productions, the company that hosts the Moscow Ballet in North America. “The breathtaking virtuosity of the dancers and the heartwrenching story make Swan Lake a must-see and a wonderful bridge into understanding European culture and Russian culture specifically. On November 10, the Moscow Ballet’s company of 40 dancers will present this classic performance at the Port Theatre, staged

Saturday, October 29–2:30pm

Fred Penner

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Wednesday, November 2–7:30pm

Montréal Guitare Trio

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Baskerville: A Sherlock Holmes Mystery An Arts Club Theatre Company Production

A fast-paced farcical adventure!

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Buffy Sainte-Marie

A Rare Solo Performance

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Monday & Tuesday, December 5 & 6–7:30pm Canada's Royal Winnipeg Ballet:

Nutcracker

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by Ballet Master Vladimir Troschenko, honours graduate of both the Bolshoi and Kirov Ballet academies. Trained in the Vaganova method of ballet, the dancers bring to the stage stunning precision and grace. Though Swan Lake is beautiful, it is also arduous for the dancers, especially the principal ballerina. “From the performance aspect, it is a very, very demanding role [for the principal ballerina] because for a great deal of time she is the main character on the stage and she is both the poor sweetheart Odette and the evil seductress Odile. She has to not only carry out the physical steps, but portray both roles emotionally,” says public relations director Sally Michael Keys. Celebrating its 25th anniversary in 2017, the Moscow Ballet performs for six weeks each year in over 100 cities across North America, and has been performing in select Canadian provinces for the past eight years.

For information and tickets, see the Port Theatre

FRENCH SPIRIT SWEEPS NEW SOUNDBITES SERIES

“We really are an experience that is not to be missed,” says Pierre Simard, artistic director for the Vancouver Island


Moscow Ballet presents Swan Lake.

Symphony. “We built up a brand that is fun, casual and speaks to the audience.” As part of nine productions for the 2016/2017 season, SoundBites — with an offering of appetizers or desserts — is designed to be a multi-sensory experience with a shorter, more intimate performance. As the first concert in the brand new SoundBites series, French Spirit will feature both traditional and playful takes on classics by Debussy, Ravel and Stravinsky, as well as a piece that Simard has composed specifically for this performance. “We’re thinking of our audiences and how we can respond as much as possible to their needs. This is the best introduction to the symphony experience. Rather than being tied up in a concert hall for two hours on a Saturday evening, you can come after work on a Thursday and still be home earlier in the evening,” says Simard. SoundBites also features a smaller, 15-member Chamber orchestra. “This presents a perfect occasion for our musicians who are craving a more intimate experience,” says Simard. Audience members are invited to attend the 5:30-6:30 pm show with appetizers at 5 pm, or the later performance, 7:158:15 pm, with dessert served following the show.

For information and tickets, see the Port Theatre 95


PHOTO BY HEYDEMANN ART OF PHOTOGRAPHY

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OUT OF SIGHT AT THE NANAIMO ART GALLERY The works of photographers Eadweard Muybridge (1830-1904) and Harold Edgerton (1903-1990) will be featured at the Nanaimo Art Gallery in an exhibit highlighting the relationship between science and art in a historical perspective. The collection is designed to inspire both creative and scientific thought, and showcase what humans cannot possibly perceive with the naked eye. Muybridge used multiple cameras with a high shutter speed to photograph animals in motion, while Edgerton invented the stroboscopic flash, allowing him to harness the speed of light to capture fragments of seconds. “It’s not just important in terms of the history of photography, and our history of perception, but it’s also extremely important to the history of motion pictures,” says curator Jesse Birch. “I hope that when people come to the show they’ll think about the way that images exist now, the way we function in a world of images in a different way than we once did, and how interesting the marriage between art and science is,” says Birch. The exhibit will run from September 10 to November 6, with a public opening reception at 7 pm September 9. Out of Sight will be presented courtesy of the Vancouver Art Gallery and the Killy Foundation, and is sponsored locally by Inuktun Services Ltd.

For information, see the Nanaimo Art Gallery

SYMPHONY SPIRIT “Nothing can compare to the power of live music,” says Pierre Simard, artistic director for the Vancouver Island Symphony. The VI Symphony is proud to present a new series that combines the timelessness of classical music with bursts of pop and modern music. Formerly presented in two separate series, Timeless Treasures and Pops, the Spirit series for the 2016/2017 season will feature a medley of sounds in each concert, making it more accessible for all audience members, no matter what type of music they prefer. “We felt that two separate series was separating our audience, and the new format allows for more open mindedness for different types of music,” says Simard. The first of the year will be Symphony Spirit on October 22. One of nine productions prepared for the season, Symphony Spirit will feature an orchestral opener by the VI Symphony’s own Keon Birney, as well as guest artist Lorraine Min on piano, and will conclude with Dvorak’s Eighth. The inspiration behind the Spirit series is “the idea that any kind of music lifts the human spirit” says Simard. “We blur the perspective and you might find more classical pieces performed with a greater pop feel.”

For information and tickets, see the Port Theatre

18th Annual

Nanaimo Artwalk Sat & Sun, December 3 & 4 11am to 5pm

at the Port Theatre

Join Conductor Pierre Simard & the Vancouver Island Symphony for our NEW Thursday Series, SymphonySoundBites!

Downtown Nanaimo & Old City Quarter for artist bios, brochure and map: www.nanaimoartwalk.jimdo.com www.facebook.com/NanaimoArtwalk

Enjoy Appetizers OR Dessert with a one hour show. You Pick! 5 pm Appealing Appetizer Bites and 5:30–6:30 pm Concert! OR 7:15–8:15 pm Concert followed by Delicious Dessert Bites! No Host Bar.

October 27, 2016

March 23, 2017

French Spirit Mozart Spirit

…funny, elegant & very French!

…the most popular composer!

SEASON SPONSOR

SERIES SPONSOR

Artwork courtesy of Dyane Brown

www.vancouverislandsymphony.com 97


PHOTO BY LIA CROWE

OUTTAKE

Built by Jack Nash, an ex-pat from Sussex, England, The Crow & Gate Pub in Cedar became the province’s first neighbourhood pub after beverage laws were changed in 1972. Authentic pub memorabilia from the U.K. creates an ambiance similar to pubs found in the South of England. The Olson family took over the The Crow & Gate 15 years after it was built, maintaining and improving the pub to its present day splendour and fame. It proved to be the perfect spot for Lia Crowe to shoot Boulevard’s fashion story.

98

Boulevard fashion story models Jessica Allerton and Andrew Yates relax with a couple of pints at the super cool Crow & Gate Pub in Cedar.


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Boulevard Magazine, Central Island Edition, Fall 2016  
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