When you live in Calgary, chances are you know a rancher. If you’re lucky, you’ll be invited out for a ride. I’m fortunate enough to be friends with Rachel Herbert, who raises grass fed cattle just south of Nanton, AB, for her poetically named premium beef business, Trail’s End Beef. So when she invited me out to ride savvy Suzy, we had some farm chores to do. And since it was hunting season, Rachel sported a safety-chic orange vest…… and so did I. I also wore a pair of chaps I hadn’t used in a decade, but my style was more Michelin Man than Wild West, thanks to the need to stay warm.On this particular day, we had a mission. These calves were weaned the week before, so now it was time to move them to the farm for the winter, where Rachel and Ty can keep an eye on them.Rachel’s hubby and quintessential cowboy Tyler mapped out our moves…… while Suzy and Jet always seemed to know exactly where to be to get the job done.Being in the saddle for hours was easy in this custom-made cutting saddle by Vic Bennett.First we moved the calves out of their pen, over the hills. My job was to stay in the back and encourage stragglers to get moo-ving. Then it was time to take this show on the road! Rachel spent years on the hunter-jumper circuit, but being a cowgirl is in her DNA — she’s a fourth-generation Alberta rancher. Those cows better get moving before Jet decides to give their butts a love bite.The grass on the side of the road was looking mighty delicious to the calves, so I had my herding work cut out for me… but I managed to snap one more photo while we were on the move. Way up ahead, on Turbo the roan, Tyler was ready to stop any cars that came along. Mission accomplished! But Suzy lingered a little longer, just to let those cows know who is boss.Rachel works the chute, and without that safety vest we finally get an opportunity to see her flawless cowgirl style, complete with vintage scarf. And those fringed chinks! Those are shorter chaps, for y’all who are not up on cowboy lingo. I didn’t know either.It was a novelty to be on a horse with such a lustrous mane, compared to the ponies I usually ride. Besides the cattle we also caught sight of a moose, loping across the ridge. Not pictured here, but emblazoned in my memory forever.Ride ‘em cowgirls. Thanks so much for an amazing day, Rachel and Suzy!
Who’s the Calgary chef (and the only chef from Canada) in Netflix’s new show? Plus a tour of a brand new Bel-Aire mansion, a local film hoping for an Oscar nod, Grant Fuhr on the red carpet, one of Teatro’s hot spots is now open for lunch, and the cutest video you’ll ever see of the pandas at the Calgary zoo. All in this edition of BBTV Update!
Now Chef Darren MacLean, seen above at his scrumptuous Shokunin restaurant in Mission, is one of the contenders on The Final Table — Netflix’s first foray into the dazzling world of chef-driven cooking competitions, complete with intimidating judges. The Final Table premieres on November 20.
The premise? 24 chefs vie to impress the world’s toughest palates as they whip up iconic dishes from nine nations in this star-packed competition. And yes, in classic Netflix style, you’ll be able to binge-watch it — all 10 episodes will be posted at the same time. Just in time for American Thanksgiving, for our friends to the south who will be in the ultimate food mood.
Get a seat at Shokunin for while you still can. It may become crowded with binge-watchers looking to binge-eat Chef Darren’s yummy yakitori. As he says in the trailer, being the final chef at the table “would absolutely change everything.” Check it out to cheer Chef Darren on!
Stepping inside Royale for lunch is like stepping into an oasis, not just because the noise from the seemingly permanent 17th Avenue construction is mercifully muted once the door shuts behind you. It’s the decor, the trees and all that natural light from above. Royale has been serving dinner since late 2017. Why did they wait so long to launch lunch?
Maybe it was because they wanted to make sure it was done right. Which, in my books, means a wine list that includes Whispering Angel rosé. Check. May I recommend the Artisan Green Salad to go with? The chevre makes these greens feel decadent, not diet.I followed with the Grilled Chinook Salmon, but it was a tough choice. The menu offered many items that justified a second glass of Whispering Angel.Take a moment to digest the view of the zinc-topped bar in Paris brasserie style. When Corbeaux Bakehouse, the restaurant formerly in this space, suddenly shut down after just one year sprucing up 17th, Teatro Group swooped in to expand its collection of Calgary comestible offerings to seven. In case you missed the Corbeaux moment, and still need your bearings, the restaurant is in the old Melrose location. Which I don’t miss. The ol’ renowned Melrose patio is now even better, with tiered levels to people-watch with discretion. If the construction stops in time for next summer, it will be an excellent place to rosé all day.
Meanwhile, back to our luscious lunch. Save room for foodie feed-worthy tiramisu. If you’re a dedicated copy consumer and you’ve read this far, I must stress: you can’t hear the construction when you’re inside. Go to Royale now, before the rest of the culinary crowds are in on the secret.
All photos except #2 courtesy of the amazing Maggie Keeper.
It’s not even Halloween yet, but I’m going to go there: are you ready for the holiday season? Don’t be disgruntled by my jumping the gun — my mention is motivated by a good cause… and a good drink.
Meet the beverage that gives back: Smokey the Pear. A swirling of spiced pear juice made in-house, spiced bitters, white rum, Cointreau, yuzu and egg white, every purchase of this concoction will provide $1 toward Closer to Home’s Adopt-A-Family program in Calgary.
Superstar goalie Grant Fuhr is one of those people who was a high achieving partier. He’s featured in the new movie, MAKING COCO: THE GRANT FUHR STORY. Plus the Calgary Polo Club has a VIP tournament coming up. But if you’re feeling more farm than fancy, AB Open Farm Days is for you. Details in the vid! Don’t forget to subscribe on YouTube.
Did you know there’s a wave to catch in Calgary? River surfers have a plan to build more, along with an urban beach, right downtown! Plus a wacky new film that predicts the zombie apocalypse will be fought on ice. In a hockey arena! Watch the vid for these stories and upcoming concert listings in YYC.
So many great events coming our way for summer in Calgary, including Parkshow this weekend and Stampede! Also, a new direct flight departing Calgary this summer to Chicago, an exclusive shopping night at Burberry, and the poetry debut of a Calgary author. Plus, I got to ride an Hermes saddle! All that and more in this edition of BBTV Update.