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Category Archive: Travel

CottageLife | So Long Sweet Summer Home

I rolled down the window as soon as we got to cottage county this weekend, Toronto didn’t have snow yet and I wanted fresh air. It smelled like winter, crisp and clean. Closing the cottage is bittersweet, it looks so nice all covered in snow but we can’t stay. I wanted to. I imagined staying up for weeks, making fires, taking trips to town for groceries. Wearing jogging pants.

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There was more snow than I thought and it crunched with each step.  Tossed a few snowballs in the lake and watched them stay in little circles. The water is really, really, cold, small ponds alongside the road are freezing over.

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Picked up this blanket and mugs from the Target for TOMS collection. They were sold out of the poncho I wanted but I got Sean one of the chambray shirts. He has at least five that look similar but this one was nice. He’s totally one of those ‘Lumbersexuals’  everyone is talking about with a beard, who wears plaid and the Canadian tuxedo (denim on denim).

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Had to pour out our homemade beer and tried snow painting. No Picasso!

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Winter is a season I find inspiring.  I’m planning to lay low and hibernate the next few months. Working on something I hope to launch in April.

In the depth of winter I finally learned that there was in me an invincible summer.
Albert Camus

For now, lights out at the cottage. The very last step of closing for the season.
Until next time Muskoka, see you in the spring.

<3 CASIE

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Travel | I’d Love to Visit The Beautiful Island of Saint Lucia

On Monday night I travelled to Toronto’s Queen East for a mini escape to Saint Lucia with Chef Nina Compton and their tourism board. I’ve never been to Saint Lucia but I’ve also never wanted to go more than right now after tasting the food and hearing travel stories from other guests.

Photo: @CasieStewart and @Dobbernation at the 2014 Saint Lucia Media Dinner by @Beccalemire

Chef Nina cooked up some seriously delicious food. My fav was the cacao beef short rib with polenta and baby veg. The spicy cacao martini was a nice start to the night. You might recognize her from Bravo’s Top Chef, she was the runner up and fan favourite on the most recent season. Chef Nina is in Toronto as the first culinary ambassador of Saint Lucia. Now that’s an awesome gig!

Chef Nina Compton, culinary ambassador of Saint Lucia=

Here’s some snaps from the night by the lovely Becca Lemire. Did you know Saint Lucia, aside form it’s natural beauty, has a tropical rainforest and one of the world’s few drive-in volcanoes. DRIVE IN VOLCANO. A DRIVE IN VOLCANO. I can only imagine the other magical wonders waiting there for me.

Chef Nina Compton, culinary ambassador of Saint Lucia

Photographer: Becca Lemire

Photographer: Becca Lemire

Photographer: Becca Lemire

Thanks to the Saint Lucia Tourist Board and Chef Nina Compton for a delicious dinner and some time to catch up with Andrew (aka Dobbernation). I had a great time meeting Charlene who has been reading THIS IS MY LIFE for years had never ran into me IRL. HI CHARLENE. It’s a truly humbling and awesome experience meeting people who have been reading for a while. It’s nice to get to know ya. You know heaps about me!

Here’s to a wonderful day. It may be getting cold outside but that doesn’t mean you can’t take the sunshine wherever you go.

<3 CASIE

 

 

Travel | Montreal Moments

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Yesterday I had brunch w/ Montreal Tourism at The Richmond. They were in town promoting all the wonderful events that happen in their great city over the next few months. I was treated to Montreal’s mouthwatering cuisine, charming joie de vivre, and a look into fall and winter adventures.

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Tourism partners and chefs included Guillaume Cantin from Les 400 Coups, Sophie Ouellet from EVO and Christian Faure from Maison Christian Faure along with Via RailIgloofestMontréal en LumièreQuartier des SpectaclesPhi CentreThe Montréal Museum of Fine ArtsMcCord Museum and Grévin Montréal.

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Earlier this month I was in Montreal to get a look at MTL à TABLE, their food festival starting October 30th. Three Ontario blogs were matched with three Montreal blogs then paired with a Chef to get a behind the scenes look at what goes into making their MTL à TABLE menu.

A photo posted by CASIE STEWART (@casiestewart) on

A photo posted by CASIE STEWART (@casiestewart) on

The group included tour included myself, Amanda Cosco (Girl About Toronto), Taylor Stinson and Natalie Sehgal (Girls on Bloor) from Ontario and Jason Lee (Shut Up and Eat), Adnan Albakri (514 eats), and Na’eem Adam (Mechant Mangeur) from Montreal.

Check out this vid Amanda, Girl About Toronto, made of her experience.

Read about my trip to a farm and fromagerie w/ Chef Jason Nelson here. For more info about what’s happening in and around Montreal visit their blog at tourisme-montreal.org. To learn about MTL à TABLE  and participating restaurants tourisme-montreal.org/mtlatable.

BON WEEKEND!

<3 CASIE

Travel | Savour the Taste of Montreal w/ MTL à TABLE

I recently had the opportunity to travel to Montreal with their tourism board to learn about their upcoming food festival, MTL à TABLE. I had an awesome time discovering their culinary scene, meeting other bloggers/media, and being back in my second fav Canadian city. This is part one of my experience.

Scroll down to see what I got up to and get details on how YOU can win a round trip, including airfare to Montreal to experience MTL à TABLE for yourself!

MY MTL à TABLE EXPERIENCE – Part One

I arrived at Renard Artisan Bistro at 9am to greet Chef Jason Nelson and my blogger partner in crime Jason from shutupandeat.ca. After visiting the smallest coffee shop in all of Montreal and we decided to venture 45min outside the city to get local meat, wine, and cheese, a trip Chef often takes on Sunday afternoons.

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It was about 10am when we did a wine tasting at Vignoble Vertefeuille. I loved being at the farm. The air was fresh and the wine was good. Not a bad start to the day! Chef gets chicken, rabbit and wine from the farm on a regular basis.

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Our next stop was Fromagerie Au Gré des Champs where we sampled cheese and said hello to the animals. It was my first time at a fromagerie and I have never tasted cheese so delicious!

This award winning fromagerie is one of very few in Quebec that uses raw unpasturized milk to make the cheese. It was DELICIOUS!

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Love this beautiful lady.

We had heaps of laughs on the way back to the city where blogger Jason from shutupandeat.ca and I met up with the other bloggers for lunch.

Later in the day I really got my hands dirty prepping dinner. And by dirty I mean I got blood on my hands! This is the blood used for blood pudding. I tried not to think about it too much. Look at my crazy face, ahhhh!

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Stay tuned for the next post about the rest of my MTL à TABLE experience…until then enter the contest below to win a MTL à TABLE experience for yourself.

WIN A ROUND TRIP TO MONTREAL FOR MTL à TABLE

Contest closes Friday, October 17, 2014

Savour Montréal’s foodie paradise with the MTL à TABLE contest. Enjoy a trip through Montréal’s creative gastronomy at MTL à TABLE Montréal’s Restaurant Week. Enter the contest and you could win a foodie experience in Montréal including:

  • Air transportation for two provided by Air Canada.
  • Two night’s accommodation for two in a Sweet Deal Package hotel.
  • Gift certificates for two including two dinners in a MTL à TABLE participating restaurant.
  • A culinary tour for two with VDM Global DMC
  • 10 transit passes for bus or metro.

Total value $2,192

ENTER HERE

Winner announced Monday. Bonne chance my friends!

<3 CASIE

 

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