loveOttawa

ottawa loves ‘friends with benefits’

Shared by Dwayne Brown

Tonya Price photographed in the studio at Carleton’s CKCU FM.

It was great to meet New Brunswick transplanted radio host, Tonya Price the other day – she was so positive and such a treat to photograph! Tonya has been hosting a really cool radio show called ‘Friends with Benefits’ for the past three years. The show is broadcasted every Tuesday at 4PM and generally profiles Canadian musicians with new releases and artists who are coming through Ottawa. Tonya also tends to favour artists who are performing as part of NAC Presents. “I think it is an amazing series that has really been a positive contribution to the Ottawa music scene.” Tonya also loves to feature charitable events, festivals, local Ottawa musicians and artists.

Tonya loves her work with campus/community radio as it’s helped her to get so much more in tune with all the events going on in Ottawa and has helped her make great connections with people through her show. “I love asking questions and hearing my guest’s stories. There are a lot of excellent, hard working Ottawa musicians and people who contribute to the ‘scene’ in Ottawa.”

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© dwayne brown studio – the loveOttawa project

Being a creative person Tonya really loves the supportive and collaborative nature of Ottawa’s community – and just how kind and helpful people are. She’s also loving how the evolving Ottawa restaurant scene has grown a lot in the last few years in terms of choice, creativity and quality. Places like Play, Supply & Demand, Cafe My House, Patty’s Pub and the Clocktower Pubs! Tonya also points out how the regional, destination music venues have grown a lot in the past few years. “We don’t just have the BlackSheep Inn anymore. We have The Branch in Kemptville, The Neat Cafe in Burnstown, and now McCloskey’s in Chesterville – and North on 29 near Almonte, which just opened. It’s very exciting!”

I love asking people for their Ottawa hidden gems, and Tonya had a few awesome ones! House of Targ (Pinball and Perogies), Flying Piggy’s (Bistro Italiano), The Record Centre (Awesome Vinyl), D’Rienzo’s (Sandwiches Worth the Line-up), The Orange Art Gallery (An Old Bank Full of Art), The Loft (Salon & Spa) and the coolest silver jewelery from local designer – Ania Gerts, available at Zahara Jewellery in Westboro.

Thanks so much Tonya, for sharing what you love about Ottawa and for being such a great proponent for local and Canadian music!

For more information about Tonya Price’s radio show take a peek at: CKCU 93.1FM online  and/or you can follow Tonya on Twitter at: @little_tonya and on Instagram at: @little_tonya

 

 


sharing the love – one cupcake at a time

Shared by Anita Ruivo

Veronick Ayling photographed at V’s Cupcakes in Manotick.

At loveOttawa we get the chance to meet and photograph all types of wonderful and generous people. Veronick Ayling, owner of  V’s Cupcakes in Manotick, was all of that and more.

Veronick’s unique logo (the letter V capped off as a heart) tells the story of a woman who came by her dream through the belief that when there’s hope, obstacles can be overcome. Faced with a serious health challenge two years ago and forced to leave her twenty year career in the military, Veronick, with the help and support of her husband Mike, took the road less travelled. While dealing with this challenge, she came up with a business plan, designed every detail of her future cupcake café and put all of her love into a dream.

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© dwayne brown studio – the loveOttawa project

The result is felt as soon as you walk in: the sweet smell of made-from-scratch baking, the crisp and welcoming decor, the attention to small details and, of course, Veronick herself, a vibrant yet soft spoken woman who has, in less than 5 months, worked nonstop to create a unique and very special cafe, serving a delicious and varied offering of cupcakes and baked goods and catering to all types of clients. “We can and have answered to diverse customer desires, from large corporate orders to exquisite custom designed wedding cakes.”

When asked about her business, Veronick replies, “V’s Cupcakes is our dream, humbly shared with the community. We want customers to feel like they have arrived at a destination, rather than stopping by during errands.”

Veronick and Mike love Ottawa and  although busy, they enjoy skiing in the winter and boating on the Rideau River in the summer, with their three children. Their favourite downtown Ottawa restaurant is Bekta. They are especially proud of being a part of the Manotick community. “In Manotick, La Piazza is our go-to restaurant most of the time when we eat out. My Toy Shop on Tighe Street is a wonderful store to discover surprises you would never find at the big box toy stores. It’s like Mr. Magorium’s Wonder Emporium in there!”

Thank you, Veronick, for sharing your story and dream with loveOttawa!

Please drop into see Veronick’s lovely shop in Manotick at 5556 Manotick Main Street. For more information: www.vcupcakes.ca and you can follow them on Twitter at: @vscupcakeshop and Instagram at: @vscupcakeshop


sharing a little love with a new friend in town

Shared by Anita Ruivo + Dwayne Brown

What do you love about the new Frank and Oak store in Westboro?

Today was a really cool experience in social networking – asking people what they love about Ottawa and what they love about a new store in town. We set up our canvas in the new Frank and Oak store in Westboro for a few hours and asked customers what they loved, and surprisingly their answers were hard to distinguish between Ottawa and Frank and Oak. It was also really awesome to meet so many interesting folks – tattoo artists to teachers, photographers to hair stylists, restauranteurs to print specialist, designers to writers and archivists to artists. It truly was a social networking event that combined welcoming a new store to town and celebrating some very cool and positive folks who help make up the vibrant community of Ottawa!

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“I find myself constantly inspired in this community, whether it is just by walking through the streets or along the canal, meeting new people, taking a yoga class, or discovering parts of the city I haven’t seen before. For this reason ‘Inspiration’ was my word of choice.” ~ Sarah Gleason

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Thanks so much to Heather and her team for making today so fun for us and all the customers!

Drop by the store in Westboro at 297 Richmond, and for more information about the Frank and Oak brand and offering, you can take a peek at: www.frankandoak.com  and/or follow the Westboro store on their Facebook page.

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© dwayne brown studio – the loveOttawa project


the warmest and friendliest folks in ottawa

Shared by Dwayne Brown

Jen Dykxhoorn photographed in front of Raw Sugar on Somerset.

Some might call Jen Dykxhoorn a hard core all-season cyclist, and that might be true – but she’s also the coolest and kindest natured cyclist I’ve ever met! I first saw Jen last month cycling through Hintonburg on a wickedly snowy day wearing her vintage fur coat, a lovely scarf and her bike helmet, of course. She was sporting the most beautiful vibrant turquoise bike. I snapped and Instagramed her photo with a message that I needed to photograph her for loveOttawa. By the end of the day I had found her!

When I asked Jen if she had a favourite café to serve as a background for our photograph, she quickly offered up Raw Sugar Café. She loves its cozy atmosphere and wonderful shows, with hot toddys with maple whiskey that can warm any wintery day! (One of our favourites too!)

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© dwayne brown studio – the loveOttawa project

What Jen loves most about Ottawa is how the city embraces every season. “The city actually blooms in the spring with tulips and enthusiasm, the summer is rich with music festivals and farmers’ markets, and most uniquely, the sparkles in the winter, embracing the snow and ice and buzzing with an abundance of winter fun.”

Not surprisingly, Jen also shared how she loves the bike paths along the canal and river – and the easy and adventurous bike commute she does each day. “Rather than sitting in traffic, or waiting on a bus, cycling gives me the freedom to move through the city and have micro-adventures every day.” She loves that cycling connects her to other fellow road-warriors, especially in the winter where only a few are braving the frost, ice and salt. “When stopped at a stoplight with a fellow winter cyclist, you invariably exchange pleasantries and find that you are connected to the warmest and friendliest folks in Ottawa.”

Jen also loves living in the interesting and lively neighbourhood of Wellington West. “Wellington West has everything: the best shops including beautiful boutiques like Victoire and Flock, many coffee shops and restaurants (including Macaron & Madelines and Absinthe), and of course, wonderful bike shops (like Tall Tree Cycles)!” Another favorite spot of Jen’s is Legend Records, where she loves hunting for musical treasures.

Ottawa really is a big city made up of so many small, connected and unique neighbourhoods – with an abundance of great places to shop, experience and hang out!

Thanks so much Jen for sharing – we can’t wait to see you back out there on the road!

For musings about bicycles, epidemiology, and life, you can look at Jen’s blog: www.lovelyoutliers.com and/or instagram: @lovelyoutlier  And if you’d like to learn more about safe cycling in Ottawa, Jen is a big supporter of the work of Citizens for Safe Cycling.

 

 

 


welcoming with the cozy warmth of home

Shared by Anita Ruivo + Dwayne Brown

Laurie Jones photographed downtown at 222 Lyon Tapas Bar.

Today is the last day of our “12 days of responsible Christmas celebrating” series and I’m so proud to finish the series with owner Laurie Jones photographed in her lovely Spanish influenced restaurant  222 Lyon Tapas Bar.  As soon as we arrived, it felt like Laurie was welcoming us into her home – it’s no wonder she has such a great following with loyal regulars! As much as this series is about alternative cocktails for designated drivers, it’s really a continued tribute to the warm heart that Ottawa wears so proudly – and Laurie so wonderfully reflects that heart. Thanks so much Laurie for sharing this very delicious Virgin White Sangria, made with pineapple, orange and cranberry juice, San Pelligrino soda, blueberries, oranges, limes, strawberries and raspberries!  www.222lyontapasbar.com

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© dwayne brown studio – the loveOttawa project

Thanks so much to all the great restaurants, bars and hotels in Ottawa who care so much for their patrons and our community by offering such awesome non-alcoholic cocktails for designated drivers during the festive season. Thanks also to great initiatives like Operation Red Nose who by the generous assistance of volunteers and sponsors help people get their cars home if they’ve had too much to drink. Happy and safe holidays from loveOttawa!


great food, cool atmosphere and a sober sling

Shared by Anita Ruivo + Dwayne Brown

Niall Robertson-Patterson photographed at El Camino on Elgin Street.

I’m a super big fan of Matt Carmichael’s famed El Camino, not because it’s Ottawa’s coolest restaurant, but because it’s an awesome combination of great food, respectful service, fair prices, passionate bar staff – and even holiday responsible cocktails for designated drivers! Anyone who’s met Niall or has watched him behind the bar at El Camino knows there isn’t anyone else in town more passionate at making cocktails, so we’re so appreciative that he created one of his non-alcoholic cocktails before his busy Saturday night dinner service. The Sober Sling is made with pineapple, cherry, cucumber, ginger beer, agave and for a little heat….some hot chilies. So delicious!   www.eatelcamino.com

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© dwayne brown studio – the loveOttawa project

Thanks so much to all the great restaurants, bars and hotels in Ottawa who care so much for their patrons and our community by offering such awesome non-alcoholic cocktails for designated drivers during the festive season. Thanks also to great initiatives like Operation Red Nose who by the generous assistance of volunteers and sponsors help people get their cars home if they’ve had too much to drink. Happy and safe holidays from loveOttawa!


celebrating responsibly with a landmark herb fresco

Shared by Anita Ruivo + Dwayne Brown

Fletcher photographed in Zoés Lounge at the historic Chateau Laurier Hotel.

Our 12 days of responsible Christmas celebrating series has taken us from the cool and hip, to the culinary unique and excellent – and now to the historic and landmark Chateau Laurier Hotel! (On that note, I just love how the best Ottawa restaurants and bars really get behind an idea or project.) Super big thanks to Fletcher for making and sharing this amazing Herb Fresco, made with ginger ale, pineapple juice, and fresh mint and rosemary!  www.fairmont.com/laurier-ottawa

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© dwayne brown studio – the loveOttawa project

Thanks so much to all the great restaurants, bars and hotels in Ottawa who care so much for their patrons and our community by offering such awesome non-alcoholic cocktails for designated drivers during the festive season. Thanks also to great initiatives like Operation Red Nose who by the generous assistance of volunteers and sponsors help people get their cars home if they’ve had too much to drink. Happy and safe holidays from loveOttawa!


celebrating with some happy strawberry ginger cheer

Shared by Anita Ruivo + Dwayne Brown

Bar Manager Laura Argument photographed at Fraser Café in New Edinburgh.

One of the things that is pretty awesome about our 12 days of responsible Christmas celebrating series, is that we get to meet and visit some of the very best restaurants in Ottawa. Fraser Café isn’t only one of those restaurants, it’s also one of the most favoured restaurants amongst other restaurant owners and chefs! It was so nice yesterday to drop into Fraser Café and photograph Laura Argument sharing their holiday non-alcoholic drink, The Happy Strawberry Ginger Cheer. This festive mock-tail is made with apple rhubarb juice, elderflower, fresh meyer lemon, mint and a splash of Harvey and Vern’s Ginger Beer. This delicious drink is great if you’re the designated driver or you’re pregnant and still want to accompany your dinner with a fun cocktail!   www.frasercafe.ca

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© dwayne brown studio – the loveOttawa project

Thanks so much to all the great restaurants, bars and hotels in Ottawa who care so much for their patrons and our community by offering such awesome non-alcoholic cocktails for designated drivers during the festive season. Thanks also to great initiatives like Operation Red Nose who by the generous assistance of volunteers and sponsors help people get their cars home if they’ve had too much to drink. Happy and safe holidays from loveOttawa!


merry mastiqua – a holiday drink older than christmas

Shared by Anita Ruivo + Dwayne Brown

Mike Chatham photographed at Evoo Greek Kitchen on Preston Street.

It was great to drop in yesterday to photograph Mike Chatham at Evoo, my favourite Greek restaurant in Ottawa! Mike prepared this cool non-alcoholic cocktail the Merry Mastiqua, made from Mastiqua natually flavoured water, lemon, cucumber and fresh dark opal basil. The super refreshing Mastiqua water is flavoured with the resin of the Greek Mastiha tree which has been cherished for its unique properties since ancient times. Thanks Mike!  www.evoogreekkitchen.ca

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© dwayne brown studio – the loveOttawa project

Thanks so much to all the great restaurants, bars and hotels in Ottawa who care so much for their patrons and our community by offering such awesome non-alcoholic cocktails for designated drivers during the festive season. Thanks also to great initiatives like Operation Red Nose who by the generous assistance of volunteers and sponsors help people get their cars home if they’ve had too much to drink. Happy and safe holidays from loveOttawa!


the bartender’s choice is always amazing

Shared by Anita Ruivo + Dwayne Brown

Owner Sean McCoy photographed at Aperativo in Kanata.

If you haven’t been out to experience Aperitivo in Centrum plaza yet, you’ve truly been missing one of Ottawa’s best restaurants. The food is amazing, the wine list is incredible and the service is second to none. In addition to great food, Sean and his team are more than happy to offer their guests special non-alcoholic drinks to accompany their meal – the treat is that it’s a different drink depending who’s on service! Sean’s bartender’s choice is made with lime, cucumber, rich simple syrup and soda – super refreshing and so tasty!   www.aperitivo.ca

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© dwayne brown studio – the loveOttawa project

Thanks so much to all the great restaurants, bars and hotels in Ottawa who care so much for their patrons and our community by offering such awesome non-alcoholic cocktails for designated drivers during the festive season. Thanks also to great initiatives like Operation Red Nose who by the generous assistance of volunteers and sponsors help people get their cars home if they’ve had too much to drink. Happy and safe holidays from loveOttawa!


japanese elegance and so festively refreshing

Shared by Anita Ruivo + Dwayne Brown

Yuna Park photographed at Kiko Sushi Bar on Preston.

Like many, I’m a hard core regular at Kiko Sushi Bar on Preston, so I was so pleased when they agreed to show off one of their non-alcoholic holiday drinks for us – the Holiday Plum Soda. If you’re in at Kiko for a Christmas celebration, this Japanese virgin cocktail is super refreshing and perfect if you’re the designated driver or prefer something non-alcoholic!  :)  www.kikosushibar.com

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© dwayne brown studio – the loveOttawa project

Thanks so much to all the great restaurants, bars and hotels in Ottawa who care so much for their patrons and our community by offering such awesome non-alcoholic cocktails for designated drivers during the festive season. Thanks also to great initiatives like Operation Red Nose who by the generous assistance of volunteers and sponsors help people get their cars home if they’ve had too much to drink. Happy and safe holidays from loveOttawa!


making room for cool non-alcoholic cocktails

Shared by Anita Ruivo + Dwayne Brown

Jon Miller photographed downtown at The Albion Rooms.

The Albion Rooms in The Novotel Hotel is one of Ottawa’s best bars for cocktails, and they were super excited to share this delicious non-alcoholic drink with us – The Spiced Shrub! Like every great cocktail, ingredients mean everything including this refreshing drink. The Spiced Shrub is made with house cider berry shrub, fresh lime and locally made Harvey & Vern’s Ginger Beer – so awesome and so great if you’re the designated driver! www.thealbionrooms.com

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© dwayne brown studio – the loveOttawa project

Thanks so much to all the great restaurants, bars and hotels in Ottawa who care so much for their patrons and our community by offering such awesome non-alcoholic cocktails for designated drivers during the festive season. Thanks also to great initiatives like Operation Red Nose who by the generous assistance of volunteers and sponsors help people get their cars home if they’ve had too much to drink. Happy and safe holidays from loveOttawa!


the belmont – where cool and interesting meets healthy

Shared by Anita Ruivo + Dwayne Brown

Adrian and Will photographed at The Belmont in Old Ottawa South.

There’s a new cool spot in town in Old Ottawa South – The Belmont Snack Bar! As as much as their aesthetic pays tribute to vintage and reclaims the past, their menu has a commitment to the interesting and the healthy. Adrian the owner, also has a commitment to offering interesting alternatives to their awesome cocktail list for folks looking for something non-alcoholic – like this delicious and natural Sweet Tamarind Tea. Thanks Will for passionately perfecting it for our 12 days of safe Christmas celebrating series!  www.belmontottawa.com

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© dwayne brown studio – the loveOttawa project

Thanks so much to all the great restaurants, bars and hotels in Ottawa who care so much for their patrons and our community by offering such awesome non-alcoholic cocktails for designated drivers during the festive season. Thanks also to great initiatives like Operation Red Nose who by the generous assistance of volunteers and sponsors help people get their cars home if they’ve had too much to drink. Happy and safe holidays from loveOttawa!