Janet Jackson brings the State Of The World to Vancouver

Janet Jackson – Rogers Arena – September 26, 2017

Janet Jackson brought her State Of The World concert tour to Rogers Arena in Vancouver this week.  Vancouver has a special connection with Miss Jackson, being the rehearsal spot the All For You Tour, and starting arena for her Rock Witchu and Unbreakable Tours.  An enthusiastic audience cheered the voice-over social commentary before the R&B legend made her appearance, followed by her troupe of dancers, to give us The Knowledge and State of the World to open the set.

From then on, it was two+ hours of hits, and memories, keeping most of the audience on their feet for the evening.  Just as her albums have shown an evolution and provided Miss Jackson with a platform to make her own statement on the state of the world, this tour performance was broken into segments that reflected the divas decades long career.  The new mom worked at a great clip powering through vocals and dancing mash-ups of her early hits including; Nasty, What Have You Done For Me Lately, Miss You Much, Alright, Control, Escapade, and more.  A costume change brought some of her softer ballads, and some slight sound issues, before kicking it back up for a crowd pleasing That’s The Way Love Goes and other legendary 90s hits before another costume change wraps up the show with If and Rhythm Nation.  Video vignettes showing career highlights as well as new imagery accented the stage set and served as a statement about the longevity of the Janet’s iconic career. 

The encore and final costume change saw a casually sexy Janet, fitted white shirt and jeans, come out to engage with the audience, introducing her band and dancers then leaving the audience satisfied but wanting the good times to continue. 

 

Janet Jackson’s State of the World Tour continues around North America for the remainder of 2017.

 

Lionel Richie & Mariah Carey bring All The Hits to Vancouver

This week, Lionel Richie wrapped up his All The Hits tour in Seattle with their penultimate gig making a stop in Vancouver. Along with the iconic hit maker, another legendary voice joined the tour with Mariah Carey sharing the bill as a special guest.

As the audience arrived, opening act Tauren Wells, got the evening going with a set of his Christian R&B tinged pop/rock.

A short stage reset welcomed Mariah Carey to the stage.

With a flash of a career montage, Ms Carey, upon a throne, her voice preceding her, arrived on stage. Her set included some of her greatest hits, sounding amazing as she hit every note of her career defining tunes like; Heartbreaker, Touch My Body, My All, It’s Like That, Vision of Love, and more.  One of the sweetest moments of the set was when the singer’s twins, Moroccan and Monroe joined her onstage.  Little Miss Monroe joined her mother singing Always Be My Baby, while Moroccan took to the throne and interjected like a hype-boy.  With her instrument fully in great form, Mariah has fun playing the diva throughout the set; her back-up dancers treating her like a Queen, getting a hair & make-up touch up whilst on her throne, three costume changes but never letting the over-the-top fun get in the way of job number one, belting out best-selling hit after hit.

After Ms Carey’s 75 minute set wrapped up with an encore of Hero, another set change get the stage ready for Lionel Richie and his nearly 50 year catalogue.

The energetic 68 year old showed little effect from the knee surgery that postponed the tour from earlier in the year.  Boundless energy and an arena filling presence kept the audience enraptured and singing along to hits from both his solo career and with The Commodores.  Starting with Easy, then moving swiftly between upbeat numbers and ballads like Running With The Night, You Are, Penny Lover, Hello, Stuck On You, Brickhouse, Three Times A Lady, Say You Say Me, Dancing On The Ceiling.  Engaging the audience, and poking a bit of fun at his and some of the fans’ age. Lionel also had a good time with some of the ladies in the front of the audience, highlighting them or their dancing on the stage screens caused some embarrassment and some joy. Getting a bit political the songwriter reminded us of how much good can get done when people work together with a solo rendition of We Are The World before wrapping up the evening with his anthem All Night Long (All Night).

Surely many of the audience would have like the evening of great songs and singers to continue all night long but after nearly 4 hours the night wrapped leaving smiles on faces and songs in heads and hearts across the arena.

 

Join Tasting Plates Burnaby Heights – May 17th

Elevate your taste buds with a trip to Burnaby Heights on May 7th with Vancouver Foodster’s Tasting Plates.  The Hastings corridor through Burnaby finds a wide variety of flavours and styles of eateries. The neighbourhood chefs are sure to pull out all stops as Tasting Plates tours their spots.

Tasting Plates patrons are invited to check in, collect their Tasting Plates card and map, then venture off, on foot or by wheels to explore Burnaby Heights. Along the way, visit the chefs/owners, fellow foodies, friends and family over flavourful Tasting Plates from the likes of Glenburn Soda Fountain & Confectionary to The Gray Olive Cafeteria.

More restaurants will be announced closer to the event, but Early Bird tickets are on sale now on Eventbrite.

Early-Bird Tickets: $35 per person before May 7
Advance Tickets $45 per person after May 7
Regular $60 per person after May 14

Tasting Plates North Vancouver – Recap

This week, the North Shore was invaded by a gaggle of hungry explorers taking part in Vancouver Foodster’s Tasting Plates North Vancouver.  As with all Tasting Plates, the patrons got to experience a sampling of what the neighbourhood has to offer.  Restaurants, cafes, and their chefs put their best foot forward with their Tasting Plates and Cups.

Starting off at Bean Around The World at Lonsdale Quay Market, Tasting Platers collected their Tasting Plates cards and map, and sat down for a tasting cup of drip or espresso based coffees.  Armed with our Americano we set out on a flavorful journey around North Van.

 

 

 

The tasting plate that two-week old Lift Breakfast Bakery, 101 Lonsdale Avenue served was a perfect teaser of the sweet and savoury tastes we’ll find at Lift. Breakfast for dinner is always a favourite.

House Smoked Trout Eggs Benedict, served on a Potato Rosti with rich Hollandaise Sauce
Mini Kouign Amann, a Breton Pastry, crispy and sweet outside with a soft buttery flake inside.
Lightly Dressed Greens cleansed the palate between bites.

Exploration of the neighbourhood meets exploration of the world’s flavours at Maru Korean Bistro, 125 2nd St E, a plate as pretty as it was flavourful.
Saeng-Gool :- Oyster with Yuzu Foam and Tabasco-Gochujang Caviar (Jelly Pearls),
Kim-Bugak :- Crisp Nori Puff, with XO Aioli, Salmon Roe, Lime Caviar
Yook-Hoe :- Korean Beef Tartare, Sea Lettuce Powder Dusted Crostini, Asian Pear, Sesame Oil Dust and Garlic Chip.

 

Just down the street The Juicery Co 254 1st St E cleansed us with a tasting cups of The Greenest (Kale, Collards, Watercress, Cucumber, Cilantro, Dandelion, Lemon, Ginger) and Honey & Vanilla Almond Milk.  For something substantial but light a small cup of Acai Bowl creamy and smooth, with a crunchy topping of The Juicery Co‘s signature housemade granola

Who doesn’t love some chocolate, Coconama Chocolate Shop and Factory 2568 1st St E, has plenty. Artisan handmade Japanese-style truffles, were rich and creamy, with a wide variety of flavours.
COCOBARs are blended, flavoured chocolate bars, the Salted Caramel was a treat!
COCO LABO are single source, small batch, high quality chocolate. Unlike some high percentage cocoa dark chocolates, these were smooth and not grainy feeling.

 

Even though it’s only been open 7 weeks, Welcome Parlour Ice Cream, 277 8th St E, has a century of history behind it.  Housed in a building owned by the original owner of Welcome Parlor, a 1910 ice cream, candy and smoke shop on Lonsdale Ave, this renewed version is serving a selection of nostalgic and modern candy treats alongside their rich and creamy natural churned ice cream blends (plus a couple of non-dairy coconut milk based creams)
A quartet of flavours filled my Welcome Parlour Tasting Box:
Homemade Apple Pie – a real house baked apple pie crushed and blended into ice cream
Rocky Road – like s’mores on ice
Vanilla Vanilla – a creamy butter coloured, vanilla bean classic
Non-Dairy Chocolate Coconut – I can’t believe it’s not dairy

 

Last but not least, Hearthstone Brewery and Restaurant 1015 Marine Drive, combines the brewery with their recently opened Forno to bring mediterranean flavours to the imbibers.
Panzanella Salad, a nicely dressed blend of Bread, Tomatoes, Watermelon, Onion, Fiore de Latte and Herb Vinaigrette
From the choice of beers I selected a clear and refreshing Rizzla Rice Lager

If this flavour adventure sounded tasty to you, join in on Vancouver Foodster’s next Tasting Plates Burnaby Heights on May 17th.

Pizza Palooza coming February 22nd

What’s better than a good slice of pizza? How about 5 or more great slices in one night? That’s what you’ll get on Vancouver Foodster’s Pizza Palooza 2017, happening on February 22nd.

Like other Vancouver Foodster events, Pizza Palooza is a tour of some of the best and brightest eateries Vancouver has to offer.  For this event, it’s all about Pizza, as patrons get their slices from pizzerias all over the city.

From New York Slices, to Neapolitan to Roman, take a global journey of fresh from the oven pies.  Some of the pizzerias included February 22nd are;

Straight Outta Brooklyn – 701 Kingsway at Fraser Street

Ragazzi Pizza – 2996 E 22nd Ave

Firecrust Neapolitan Pizzeria – 808 Davie Street

ZeroZero Pizzeria – 415 Abbott Street

Dosa Hut – 7233 Fraser Street

Dogwood Brewing – 8284 Sherbrooke Street

Pizza Palooza Tickets are on sale now on Eventbrite
Advance Tickets are $45 until February 19th, then $60 after.

5th Anniversary Downtown Tasting Plates – March 8, 2017

It’s hard to believe Vancouver Foodster’s Tasting Plates is celebrating its 5th Anniversary Downtown Edition.  Circle March 8th in your calendar and pick up your ultra early-bird tickets now.

As with all Vancouver Foodster Tasting Plates events, you’ll explore the neighbourhood and visit some of the area restaurants to see what the chef’s have prepared to highlight their kitchens. Check in by 6pm and sample the tasting plates and cups until 10pm. Bring your friends and family for a wander through town and see if you find a new found gem.

Restaurants will be announced soon but for now get the ultra early-bird tickets for just $29 until this Sunday, January 8th.

Tickets are available on Eventbrite
After January 8th tickets early-bird tickets are $35 until January 31st. Then $45 until March 1st.

 

Tasting Plates Chinatown – Recap

A damp night didn’t dampen enthusiasm of the restauranteurs and patrons for Vancouver Foodster‘s Tasting Plates Chinatown on Wednesday evening.  The five eateries, scattered around the neighbourhood, exemplified the diversity in Chinatown as new and old make the National Historic Site their own. From traditional Chinese, to European flavours, to modern Asian fusion, and 35 years face off against 4 months of history.

TP_Chinatown_img_0525Checking in at Floata, the traditional Dim Sum & Seafood restaurant, closed off part of their large space for the Tasting Plate diners. While their Tasting Plate of Chow Mein, Egg Roll and Sesame Ball didn’t show off their kitchen to its best,  I’ve been to Floata for Dim Sum before and know they’re capable of bringing good flavours to the plate.

TP_Chinatown_img_0537The next Tasting Plate brought totally different flavours to the palate, Klaus’s Kaffe Haus.  The Coffee and Strudel cafe offered hearty, fair that was perfect for the night’s weather.  A quartet of tastes graced their plate; rich Vienna Gulasch Soup, Chinese Strudel (Pork, Bamboo Shoots, Water Chestnut, Mushroom), Asparagus & Mushroom Vegetarian Strudel and a sweet Apple Strudel.  All four items were full of flavour and filling, enticing us to want to return for a full-size strudel soon.

TP_Chinatown_img_0543Next we wandered over to the longest established Treasure Green Tea Company, on E Georgia since 1981. The welcoming tea shop is pristinely merchandised, like a museum, filled with tea, gifts, accessories and other tea-infused items.  The tea hosts prepared and served a trio of Tasting Cups of premium black tea; the 2016 seasonal blend Symphony of Light, sweet floral Romantic Peony and the tart Citrus Melody.  As an accompaniment baguette was dipped in Treasure Green Tea’s Camellia Tea Oil, infused with Dragon Ball jasmine green tea reduction.

TP_Chinatown_img_0566On Main Street we next found the Le Tigre Food Truck, outside of their restaurant, Torofuku.  The truck dished up a plate of zesty fried chicken. Even though it’s called “Don’t Order This Chicken” you really should, order it! The crispy but tender friend chicken was complimented by  7 Spice Mayo, and mixed herb Thai Chilli.

 

TP_Chinatown_img_0583Across the street was the most recently opened participant, Lise Lou’s Chocolate Bar, is a bar that I could regularly be found propping up! The small chocolate, confectionary and ice cream parlour offered a cross-section of their handmade wares.  Marc Ice Cream, inspired by their Marc Chocolate Bar – bourbon caramel, marcona almonds, Ruth Bar – strawberry raspberry jelly with crunchy peanut praline, then we got to choose a flavour of Salted Caramel and one of their nearly two dozen signature Truffles

All five restaurants showed their flavours and that the neighbourhood continues to evolve and develop.

If this sounds like a taste excursion, join Vancouver Foodster’s next events, Noodle Mania and during Dine Out Vancouver Festival, Brunch Crawls.