Wednesday, January 22, 2020

 Tsawwassen's llluminat√© Restorante

After taking care of errands in Tsawwassen on a rainy Tuesday afternoon and missing lunch, Barbara and I were ravenous by the time the supper hour arrived. We had heard that Illuminate` has a pizza special on Tuesdays so off we went before facing the 35-minute drive home.

Chef Roland Smith and his wife Joeqyna opened the doors of their restaurant on Oct 12, 2005. with the aim of bringing a quality Italian- inspired experience to South Delta; they have succeeded!

This time we did something totally different than previous visits, we usually sit at a table but this time we followed the suggestion of the hostess and sat at the bar which faces into the kitchen. What an amazing experience, I was fascinated by how Chef Roland and his staff orchestrated the preparation of each order that came through.

We noticed the cheerful smiles of the staff whenever they happened to look our way. It's little things like that that make a dining experience exceptional. The kitchen is immaculate!

We took our time looking over the menu which features elevated Italian cuisine from pasta to seafood, to steaks. We have tried various dishes over the years but never a pizza, as it *was* pizza night we went for the Pollo Aioli Pizza with chicken and mushrooms. It did not disappoint!

Pizza and wine go well together, I chose a very smooth fruit flavoured Pinot Noir from Cedar Creek. Barbara's choice was a Malbec Felino from Argentina, both good choices.

With the bar being in such close proximity to the kitchen it gave us an opportunity to chat with Chef Roland, an added bonus.

The restaurant features fresh local products, Roland and Joeqyna believe in working closely with the community. Over the15 years in business they have accumulated numerous awards along with the local paper's People Choice Award.

We topped our dinner off with coffee and a shared dessert which named Chocolate Heart, a soft-baked chocolate cake and vanilla gelati. Mouthwatering!

Did I mention how great our waiter was! Perfect service, a wonderful meal indeed, we felt very satisfied with everything as we set out on our drive home.

There are a number of dining choices in the community but none equal to five-star quality you receive at IIuminate Restorante whether it be for a pizza or a four-course meal!

Illuminate is located at 1077 56th Street Tsawwassen.

Wednesday, January 8, 2020

Is the wine world becoming too rich for us! I just checked into the price of staying at a winery guest house here in British Columbia. Minimum stay 2-night price $1000. That's right $1000.  Definitely the lifestyle of the rich and famous.

Okay onward to the next winery. Here the room prices ranged from $189 to $369 depending upon the season. The amenities are good but still, that's expensive. A third winery prices ranged from $229 - $349 a night. These prices were for their lowest accommodation.

In this third one, you could pay a slightly higher rate for the executive suite. Listed amenities, daily housekeeping, free wifi, queen bed with a duvet and breakfast.

I checked out two more small family wineries with guest houses/ rooms. As hard as I tried without phoning them there were no prices listed.

Looking at hotels in the Okanagan wine country the best price I could find for offseason was $98.00. Sorry, no swimming pool. They did provide daily housekeeping, free wifi, queen bed and breakfast.

Two of the expensive wineries listed above had restaurants. Neither website provided a menu. I bet the prices will be above average.

Curiosity! I just had to go to one of the Okanagan's most popular winery restaurants to check out their prices.  Entrees range from $26 to $56. Although they add a wine suggestion for each meal they did not provide the wine prices.

A non-Okanagan winery entrees went from $27 to $29. The wines were twice the price at the restaurant than those in the tasting room.

Maybe  I should have saved more over the years.