Food Fermentation at Forage: be here!

“From miso to vinegars, fish sauce and sourdough; fermentation transform flavours in our food.”

Kombucha Tea

The Event

Fermentation is the theme, and you’re invited! Forage Vancouver’s Chef Chris Whittaker has been busy collaborating with HandTaste Ferments’ Todd Graham, and they’ve managed to cover a lot of ground. Foods like Japanese dry ferments, misos, seasonal fruit vinegars, herring, and fish sauce are just a few examples of what’s on the menu. (Exact menu details, including the beer and cider pairings, will be revealed closer to the event.)

“Casual, comfortable and affordable, Chef Chris Whittaker’s Forage celebrates all things BC. Forage loves working to create community. Whether it’s a West End cause or part of the burgeoning movement committed to farm to table fare. Forage is there.”


About Forage

Forage is no joke, and this event is not one to miss out on. As winner of the 2015 Diner’s Choice Award, as well as Trip Advisor’s 2015 Certificate of Excellence Award, this humble restaurant boasts some major flavour, and exceptional intention.

The communal dining situation creates an atmosphere of sharing, and the staff go out of their way to answer any questions their customers might have about the food—they want you to ask.

Back to admirable intention, Chef Chris Whittaker has made sure the west-end restaurant has pioneered responsible restaurant management through zero waste efforts, energy consumption reduction, and local community support. From farmers to fishers, Forage is on it. They’re proud supporters of Ocean Wise—Whittaker is even a double gold medal winner at the annual Chowder Chowdown!

Forage’s partnership with BC Hydro and Live Smart BC are also unconventional and inspiring. For more information about these collaborations, visit

Outdoor dining


You know you want to attend, so here are the event details you should be adding to your calendar:

Where: Forage Vancouver:

When: Tuesday July 14, 2015 from 7-10pm

Cost: $125 per person, plus ticketing service charge.

If you have questions, please call 604-661-1400, or visit the website at

See you there, Vancouver!


*If you’re interested in having fun, energetic, and informative blogs written for YOU by Fresh + Fit Vancouver writers, click HERE.

Singletree Winery: escape, gaze, taste, + breathe

Rolling into the launch for this new Fraser Valley winery, I was greeted by three children in matching t-shirts, who happily directed me to where I was to park. There was an assigned attendant for this job, but he was quickly overruled by the kids.


The display was totally in sync with the family feel of the event: founded by father and son, Singletree Winery is all about family, history, and taking giant leaps of faith.

The first four varieties of grapes were planted five years ago after Andrew Etsell caught what his wife terms “the wine bug,” while doing an apprenticeship at Mission Hill Family Estate Winery. With the encouragement of their son, husband and wife team Garnet and Debbie Etsell began their grape experiment with two acres, and after the first four grape varieties flourished, more varieties were planted on the lower level of the property in 2012 and 2013.

In five short years, the 67 acre property has seen 12 of those acres planted to vineyard.


Land that had previously been used for dairy farming, fruit and vegetable planting, and turkey raising, is now officially full of grapes. It is the same area that was home to Lehman’s Landing, a gold rush stop used to offload supplies. The name Singletree refers to this rich heritage—a singletree is a part of a working horse harness, and both the name and logo of the winery speak to the very Canadian history this area of the Fraser Valley can attest to.

The formal launch was attended by a few dozen family members, friends, various media personnel, and city officials. Both Abbotsford MLA Mike de Jong and Deputy Mayor Patricia Ross gave short (but entertaining) speeches, and the presentation of the singletree that inspired the idea for the winery’s name was followed by a ribbon cutting and a catered lunch of salmon and greens.

The best part of this event? The wine, of course. Being a red wine drinker, I was hesitant to accept the glass of Pinot Gris that was offered to me. Being around 25 degrees in the hot morning sun, white wine made sense over red. And guess what?

It was lovely.


Located on the corner of Harris and Mt. Lehman, Singletree Winery should be on your radar as a place to escape, take in the gorgeous view, taste a little wine, and take a deep breath. If you’re interested in trying one (or more!) of Singletree’s vintages, shop HERE.


*If you’re interested in having fun, energetic, and informative blogs written for YOU by Fresh + Fit Vancouver writers, click HERE.

Wanderlust Whistler for Vancouver Yogis

While yoga on the Burrard Street Bridge may have gotten the ax, there are plenty of other Vancouver events to participate in this summer that feature downward dog. While I started off writing about 5 of them, I found myself narrowing it down to just one–because that’s how cool the following event sounds.

(PS- I really want to go.)

Wanderlust Whistler

From July 30-August 3rd, yogis, hippies, outdoors-men, and general life-lovers alike will participate in a celebration of wellness. Whether you are there for the yummy organic food, yoga and meditation classes, music, or top chefs and winemakers, this family-friendly festival is not to be missed.

Live music will be a massive part of this festival, and confirmed artists for 2015 include Michael Franti, Thievery Corporation, Lake Street Dive, Lee Fields and The Expressions, The Barr Brothers, Rising Appalachia, and MC Yogi.

The Venue


Taking place in scenic Whistler Village, this festival promises to boast amazing atmosphere. There will be music, speakers, incredible food prepared by some amazing chefs, performers, and of course, a whole lot of tree pose.

Maybe a little mermaid.

Have kids? The Wanderkind children’s festival will also be available for the entire weekend for kids aged 4-10. Activities include yoga (obviously!), arts, crafts, hoola-hooping, and music making.

The Yoga

Wanderlust Whistler brings together the world’s most renowned yoga teachers, and draws participants from all over North America. Confirmed instructors for 2015 include Seane Corn, Shiva Rea, Elena Brower, Rod Stryker, Rodney Yee, Colleen Saidman, and Sri Dharma Mittra.

Between their various teaching styles and the broad spectrum of yoga disciplines, Wanderlust is hypothesized to feature some of the world’s best yoga. If you’re a yogi, you need to be here.

Actually, it doesn’t really matter if you’re a yogi.

Aside from yoga, there will be guided hikes, meditation, zip-lining, rock climbing, cross-country bike riding, rafting, and paddle boarding–something for everyone!

The Food

Wanderlust Food

The Farm to Table Dinner is supposedly an unforgettable dining experience. Local farmers and chefs collaborate to create an inspired assortment of sustainable, eco-friendly, fresh, and local foods that come together in one incredible meal.

There will also be a Farmer’s Market in the Upper Village for participants to check out.

The Drinks

Local winemakers will be present at the festival to showcase their newest varieties. Termed ‘Wanderlust Uncorked,’ the festival organizes small gatherings featuring local wine, craft beer, and fabulous company.

Want tickets?! Thought so–you can get them HERE, but keep in mind that the price goes up July 1st.


*If you’re interested in having fun, energetic, and informative blogs written for YOU by Fresh + Fit Vancouver writers, click HERE.


Good News! (You like wine, right?)

2015 is shaping up to be a fabulous year for wine-lovers, and it’s not because of some awesome Wino Tax Break. (Only in our dreams, right?!) This is the year of the grape, we’re excited, and you should be, too!

Studies have shown that greater amounts of wine will result in an influx of happier people.

Ok, we can’t actual cite any of those studies, but wine obviously makes people intoxicated, and tipsy people are usually pretty happy, so that’s basically the same thing. And we could always fall back on the wise words of famous British bacteriologist Alexander Fleming:

“Penicillin cures, but wine makes people happy.”

Good enough for us!

Anyway, four new BC wineries have popped their proverbial corks this year, and we have the low-down for you:

Singletree Winery

Location: Abbotsford

  • Opened in May

Singletree Winery currently offers three brand-new wines: two white wines with grapes sourced from their vineyard in the valley (a Pinot Gris and Sauvignon Blanc blend), and a red Pinot Noir produced from grapes native to the Okanagan. Additional blends and varietals will be offered as the vines continue to grow and mature.

Singletree has plans to release a meritage blend as well as a sparkling wine, and when their Grüner Veltliner grapes come into maturity, they will add them to their white lineup.

In other words, get ready…

Blue Grouse Estate Winery

Location: Cowichan Valley

  • Opened May 23

Although the winery’s vines were planted almost 40 years ago by former Ministry of Agriculture, John Harper, this brand-new, family-owned, sustainably-farmed and award-winning winery is one of the very first wineries of Vancouver Island.

Come visit the Blue Grouse Estate Winery to sample the winery’s award-winning portfolio of wines, have yourself a picnic, or create family adventures. The winery is extremely family-friendly and community-oriented, and offers much more to do than your typical facility.

“Blue Grouse Estate Winery was built with many sustainable elements including locally-sourced construction materials, the use of geothermal energy, onsite water collection and treatment, as well as other features that reduce mechanical heating and cooling.”


Evolve Cellars

Location: Summerland

  • Opened May 16

Evolve Cellars is the newest project from the Encore Vineyards group of wineries, which is also home to TIME Estate Winery (see below) and the McWatters Collection. Christa-Lee McWatters Bond and Harry McWatters’ goal is to create wines that can be enjoyed by everyone, and the first vintages from this very new winery have just been introduced.

The creative group behind Evolve Cellars operates on the belief that the Okanagan Valley produces some of the best wines in the world, and the writer of this particular blog feels that she can personally attest to this.

Be sure to be on the lookout for the Evolve label next time you’re cruising the VQA section at your local funhouse. (Ahem—liquor store.)

TIME Estate Winery

Location: Summerland

TIME Estate Winery is scheduled to open its doors later this summer, and is another project of Harry McWatters (see above).

Four short years ago, the winery obtained its license, and, using the existing building on the vineyard, produced its first vintage of Meritage and Chardonnay. Architect Nick Bevanda of CEI Architecture was subsequently chosen to design the future winery.

“The working model of the winery includes production capacity in excess of 30,000 cases, an extensive hospitality centre (including a commercial kitchen), four luxury guest suites and a lap pool, all with stunning Valley and Lake Osoyoos views.”

Capturing the spirit of the site and creating a design that is both beautiful and practical, TIME promises to be a superb destination for west coast wine lovers. When completed, the winery will boast primarily Bordeaux-style premium wines, created from the estate’s own vines.

So drink, drink, and be crazy! (That’s the saying, right?)


*If you’re interested in having fun, energetic, and informative blogs written for YOU by Fresh + Fit Vancouver writers, click HERE.

Women of Vancouver: are YOU a warrior?

“There is a warrior in the heart of every woman. She is strong. Determined. Powerful.”

What’s Woman2Warrior?

Fresh + Fit is pleased to announce the 3rd annual Woman2Warrior event–a 5 km run that encourages women from our gorgeous province to bring their A-game, and rock a great workout. On Sunday, May 24th, participants will hit trails, grass, and track along Burnaby’s Central Park and Swangard Stadium. With twelve obstacles “designed to test strength, agility, balance and endurance,” the entire experience is nothing short of an I-am-woman-hear-me-roar-adventure!

Presented by Subway and hosted by The British Columbia Lions Society for Children with Disabilities, this obstacle adventure race is exclusive to women, and helps raise funds for the purpose of sending over 800 children and adolescents with disabilities to an accessible Easter Seals camp in British Columbia.

 “Our goal with Woman2Warrior is to raise funds while immersing our amazing competitors in a fun, supportive environment. It’s about the experience, not the competition. It’s about pushing boundaries, trying something new, and getting out of your comfort zone – much like our Easter Seals campers.” –Amy Kleckner, events manager for the BC Lions Society

What’s the Giveaway?

Win a free Warrior Prep Pack valued at over $300, which includes the following:

  • $50 gift card to Subway
  • $50 gift card to Nesters
  • One box of Clif Bars
  • One 6-pack of Formula 4 Water
  • One Luna Bars t-shirt
  • One copy of IMPACT Magazine
  • Free team registration for Woman2Warrior



How Does This Work?

  • To enter the giveaway contest, please visit this BLOG POST, and leave a comment or sign up for their newsletter HERE.
  • Women can participate as individuals or in teams, and each registrant is required to raise a minimum of $300.
  • Registration costs $35 per participant, and includes a technical shirt, finisher’s gift, access to indoor group training sessions and prizes for the top overall fundraisers and best costumes.

Last year’s Woman2Warrior event raised $158,700 by participants, in support of Easter Seals. Let’s do it again! If you’re interested in participating, register today at or call 604-873-1865 for more information.


Fashion Events, Vancouver-Style

With the warmer weather setting in, our boots and coats have gone to live in storage for a few months, and our sights are set on summer wardrobe finds. Breaking out last year’s summer style is fun, but paying attention to what’s new and improved this year is even better.

If you’re feeling like you’d like to be on your toes when it comes to fashion in Vancouver, you’re not alone. Whether you’re a buyer or a trend-setting fashion lover, we’ve got your back; check out the following events that just might inspire your new summer look(s)—there’s something for everyone:

Vancouver Fashion Week: Sept. 22-28 2015

Yep—we’re bringing out the big guns. For over 20 years, Vancouver Fashion Week has been a much-loved and looked-forward-to event. Striving to deliver a stylish experience that celebrates both multiculturalism and diversity, VFW beckons Canadian and International designers from all over the globe. VFW is definitely the West Coast’s most prestigious industry event, internationally acclaimed and recognized as a perfect platform for both new and seasoned designers, as well as sponsors.

“Past participants have included designers such as Versace, Parasuco, Roca Wear, Ecko, Anna Sui, Lauren Sui, Lauren Vidal, Turnover, Paul Hardy, Kersh and up-and-comers such as Frost Sportiva. VFW continues to build its international presence through global media coverage and proves excellent exposure for supporting partners.”

If you love fashion, you’ll want to be here. For a chance to win entry to the event, text VFW to 778-800-1388. Visit for more details.

Good luck, and check out the video below if you feel the need to ramp up your excitement. (As if…)

FX Fashion Exchange Vancouver, 2 Dates

Better + Designer Men’s and Ladies Wear August 5-9, 2015

Moderate Ladies Wears + Jeans/Street Wear Sept. 17-14, 2015

Taking place just outside of downtown Vancouver, the FX Fashion Exchange boasts a huge venue, and hosts more than 700 of the most current brands and looks. With a massive selection of show-stopping merchandise, easy access, and a fabulous facility, it’s no surprise that the FX Fashion Exchange is fast becoming the “it” fashion marketplace.

Show themes are specifically designed to help you focus your buying trip on what your customers really want, as well as help you discover the newest, most exciting and emerging trends.

If you’re a buyer, you need to check it out. But don’t limit yourself while you work—have fun while you do your job! Vancouver is its own unique playground, and subsequently offers an incredible variety of gorgeous restaurants, theaters, retail shopping, and interesting night-life–you won’t be bored!

Come check us out! Visit for more details.


Spring Yaletown Fashion Show featuring Blushing Boutique

This event is tonight! May 13, 2015

Taking place at 7pm at the Rosedale Hotel on Robson, this event is a Fundraising Fashion Show presented by the Rotary Club of Vancouver Yaletown. This year, the event is featuring Shelley Klassen of Vancouver’s own Blushing Boutique! Come check out an evening of fashion and fun and help support a variety of community projects. There will be canapés, a silent auction, door prizes, and (of course) a cash bar.

Tickets start at $35.00 each. Visit for more information.

Vancouver’s 9th Annual Spot Prawn Festival!

If you love sustainable crustaceans, check this out! Vancouver’s 2015 Spot Prawn Festival will be taking place on Sunday, May 17th at Fisherman’s Wharf (1505 West 1st Ave).

Ummm…What’s a Spot Prawn?

spot prawn

Time for some prawn education! Wild BC spot prawns have a delicate flavour, and are sweet and firm. They have two defining features: white spots on their tail, and white horizontal lines on their carapace. Spot prawn season begins mid-May, and only lasts for about 6-8 weeks, so get excited, Vancouver!

Super Fun Fact (in this writer’s opinion): Prawns are hermaphrodites! For their first two years they are male, and for the second two years they switch to female.

Facts Part Two

  • BC’s spot prawns are incredibly popular in Japan and other Asian countries, with the vast majority of BC’s commercial catch consumed there.
  • The methods that fisherman use to catch spot prawns have minimal impact on other ocean habitat, and very low levels of by-catch (accidental harvesting) of other species.
  • Each year, approximately 2,400 metric tonnes of spot prawns are caught off the coast of BC.

Why are Spot Prawns Considered a Sustainable Catch?

  • Females with eggs are returned live to the ocean
  • The number of traps that can be used is limited
  • The number of vessels that can commercially harvest spot prawns is also limited
  • Spot prawn stocks are carefully and sustainably managed
  • Spot prawn populations are monitored closely: when prawn stocks approach a predetermined level, fisheries close

Craft Beer Festival

More Activities

This festival isn’t just about prawns—it’s about community. Bring your family and friends, and enjoy a wide variety of stuff for all ages. There will be face painting, live music, and other goodies. If you’re a foodie, you’ll love the cooking demonstrations put on by top Vancouver chefs, and craft beer and wine offerings from local breweries and vineyards.

Get Your Tickets, Fast

The Chef’s Table Society of British Columbia is serious about seafood, great drinks, and fun in the sun! Last year sold out, but this year, there are more tickets available. Visit the festival WEBSITE to purchase tickets, and learn more about BC spot prawns HERE. What’s included in your ticket? Each admission to the Spot Prawn Boil is $17.50 (plus tax) and includes:

  • A prepared meal that includes three delectable BC spot prawns
  • Access to the beer garden for free samples from our beer, wine, and coffee sponsors

See you next weekend!