March 10, 2012

A week on the go!

This past week was easily the busiest for us since moving to Toronto. We had all sorts of events back-to-back in what was a very packed set of adventures.

Our first activity was attending a Queen's Alumni event on Wednesday evening at the swanky National Club on Bay Street, featuring guest speaker Peter Milliken talking about his experience as the Speaker of the House of Commons. It was a very nice event and, being a political junkie, fun to hear about the ins-and-outs of life on Parliament Hill.

Thursday night found us at an art exhibit opening of Rose Hirano at the Wellington Street Art Gallery. Ms. Hirano was a thoroughly engaging speaker as she talked about her process and inspiration for the incredible reduction woodblock prints she was exhibiting.  It was a treat to be able to learn from such a gifted artist. Her works have always spoken to both of us and we admire her multi-inking process, in which she prints from light to dark values using a single piece of wood. Each image averages ten to twelve colour layers. Her prints are sublime.

On Friday I first attended Paint Rocks, a fundraising event for Painting & Drawing at OCAD U. The event combines live music with an auction in one room and art sold at a flat rate of $200 in another room. The art work was created by both OCAD U students and faculty members. I then headed over to the Gladstone Hotel to view the opening night of the OCAD U Alumni Exhibition, featuring work by over 40 alumni.  We were very impressed with the calibre of the work and we were so pleased to see such a huge crowd show up for the official opening night. There was great buzz and a nice vibe.
We were hungry so we decided to stay at the Gladstone for dinner, something we have never done before. We found the menu to be eccentrically eclectic in their Cafe but the food was very good.

On Saturday evening we hosted a colleague and her fiancee for dinner, so I was a busy boy in the kitchen for most of the day. The meal started with a broccoli soup, garnished with pear, blue cheese, and almonds. For the main I served rack of lamb, with side dishes of zucchini provencale and pommes boulangere. We finished with peach and strawberry ginger crumble served in individual ramkins. All recipes are from Gordon Ramsay's Cooking for Friends and Family Fare (also published as Sunday Brunch), my two favourite and absolutely indispensable cookbooks.

I think we'll take it pretty easy on Sunday!  

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