Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Lazia's Tiramisu

Tuesday, May 26, 2009
Lazia Tiramisu
Location: North, Downtown
Website: http://www.lazia.ca/

I can’t say that I have ever much cared for tiramisu…that was until Carly made me try the tiramisu at Famoso! Ever since then I have been addicted to tiramisu. Completely forgetting my previous distaste for what I considered a foamy dessert and going out in search of other mouth watering versions to delight my palate.

The next stop on our tiramisu hunt took us to Lazia in the north end. First impressions of the restaurant were good. It was trendy but inviting. We decided to sit in the lounge as we were also there to catch the hockey game – our beloved Canucks were playing in the first round of the playoffs against the Blues…ahhh the good old days when they were winning! There’s always next year ‘nucks!

Lazia had lots of dessert options to choose from. Including crème brulé which is always a crowd pleaser. We were having a hard time deciding so the waitress suggested that we head over to the cooler on the restaurant side and take a look at the desserts. This was a nice touch and made the selection process easier. The dessert cooler was a dessert lover’s heaven. Lazia’s desserts, including the tiramisu, are all individually sized so you get an individual little cake instead of a slice from a large cake – delightful! We made our choices and headed back to our table where drinks had already been served.

Strike one against Lazia. The coffee came in glasses which always look nice but unfortunately let out the heat so the coffee gets cold quickly. I didn’t get a single hot sip of coffee all night. Then the main event – the tiramisu – arrived. It was adorable! A miniature version of a large cake; it was almost too cute to eat, but that didn’t hold us back for long. We each took a bite and as usual turned to look at each other. This tiramisu didn’t evoke the same reaction as the Sorrentino’s tiramisu so we were off to a good start. Unfortunately though my first bite was all mascarpone cheese so I couldn’t really tell much. I went back for a second bite and was pleasantly surprised. It was not the foamy whippy tasteless tiramisu of my past but I can’t say that it was comparable to the tiramisu of my dreams from Famoso. It was a solid attempt though. It was light and airy but there was something missing in the combination of coffee and liqueur. The cake was composed of a layer of chocolate cake on the bottom then a layer of mascarpone topped by a layer of ladies fingers all wrapped up in more mascarpone. I personally found the cake layer to be a bit heavy for the lightness that is required for tiramisu but since it was only one layer it was passable. A warning however, I made the mistake of trying the chocolate cake layer by itself and got a nasty surprise. It was drenched in really strong coffee and was not sweet at all. It was obviously not meant to be eaten by itself. If for whatever reason you find yourself with the bottom layer alone to eat do yourself a favour and grab some mascarpone from the side or something. Trust me on this one!

All in all Lazia ranks #2 on tiramisu hunt knocking Sorrentino’s into the third position. Famoso still ranks #1 for us based on both price and flavour.

NB – This is not related to our tiramisu research but a friend of ours ordered some sort of mango mousse concoction that turned out to be one of the worst desserts I have ever tried. Whoever decided to call that dense bit of creaminess mousse has obviously never tried real mousse. If anyone happens to go to Lazia because of this post I don’t want it to be my fault that they end up ordering this unfortunate attempt at dessert. So be warned.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Sobeys Live Music

Wednesday, May 20, 2009
Location: Sobeys Downtown: 10404 Jasper Ave ; Sobeys College Plaza: 8225 112 St
Price: Free!
Date/Time: Every Friday/Saturday from 5 pm to 9 pm

Amanda wrote last week about how getting older has left us needing to exercise. Unfortunately, metabolism isn't the only thing that age has taken away from us! Back in the day, we could go clubbing every Friday and Saturday, drinking 2 nights in a row just meant sleeping it off on Sunday, and the loud constant rings in our ears normally disappeared after a quick snooze. Late twenties hit and we're left pondering how to spend our weekends so we're home by midnight to avoid further break down of our aging bodies. (Dramatic, I know. I'm not sure how we'll handle the 30's)

I was glancing through the newspaper one day for things to do, and I did a double take when I read "Come to Sobeys for Live Music every Friday and Saturday starting in May". Sobeys? The grocery store?

Since a place like Whyte Ave is no longer our best friend, we strolled over to Sobeys one Friday night to see what this is all about. Bryan and I were running a little late, so Amanda texted me:

7:30 pm from Amanda: U here yet
7:31 pm from Carly: Almost, 5 min away
7:34 pm from Amanda: There's no music
Carly: speechless

Bryan and I found a parking spot not too far away at a meter and when walked in to Sobeys, Amanda was right, there was no music. Were we at the wrong place? Were we misinformed? Were we too late?

Walking to the far end of the store - there it was - a coffee/drinks bar in the corner. Surprisingly, it was bright, warm, and inviting. They had a fireplace in the far wall along with a couple of really nice comfy chairs. There were a few tables - both low and high - along with some modern decoration. It seemed that the band was just taking a break, so we were relieved to know that we didn't miss the show entirely!

We quickly grabbed a spot at the bar. They serve a variety of food like sandwiches, fries, and salads. Along with that, they also serve coffee, tea, and fancy lattes. Price-wise, the food is reasonable. I settled for a glass of house red for $5 (one of their daily specials) while the boys got a bucket of beer (4 in a bucket) for $12. If you didn't want what's on their menu, you can always buy food from the grocery store (they have a fresh sushi bar!) and bring it in. It's super convenient! They also offer a buck a shuck every Thursday and Friday at Sobeys for their raw oysters. I had 10 one night and I must admit, they were so fresh and juicy I thought I was in heaven! It was super laid back, a perfect setting where you can read a magazine or newspaper, settle down and enjoy the music, or chat with your friends without it being too distracting. The audience ranged from kids to people our age to older retirees - they really catered to everyone!

So if you're looking for something a little more laid back to do on the weekend, why not check out the live music at Sobey's? It's always a local band (and at Cheap Chicks, we fully support local businesses!) and it's cheap! For $2 (a coffee), you can literally enjoy 4 hours of entertainment. Go buy a magazine and come sit by the fire, you'll feel right at home!

This week (May.22 and May 23), they're featuring Adurey Ochoa Trio (jazz) at the downtown location, and Dan Davis Trio (jazz) at the College Plaza location. Would love to hear how you feel about live music at a grocery store!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009


Tuesday, May 19, 2009
Some interesting tidbits for our fellow cheap chicks and dudes.

Sportcheck is having a friends and family sale Wed. May 20th and Thurs. May 21st. Visit the following link and print out the coupon to get the deal:

Also Tim Horton's is promoting their new iced coffees. Swing by participating stores on May 21st between 12pm-5pm and get a free small iced coffee!

Then on Sunday May 24th swing by Harvey's between 10:30am and 3pm to pick up a free original hamburger!

And don't forget that the next perogy dinner and bake sale is this Friday May 22nd at St. John's Cultural Centre. Hope to see you there!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Bellyfit Excercise Classes

Monday, May 11, 2009
Location: Legends Training Centre, 10581 107 St.
Price: FREE!!!
Bring: Indoor running shoes, yoga mat, and water
Date/Time: Every Monday/Wednesday in May from 5-6pm
Website: Sign up - http://www.andnow.ca/id/482
Information - http://www.bellyfit.ca/

Remember the days when you ate whatever you wanted and still remained the size of a twig? When what you considered exercise was walking to fridge to get dessert? Well I don’t know about you but those days are gone for me. I turned 28 and my metabolism decided to shut down. It was like – That’s it we’re done! You are too old for me! …It left me for a younger woman. Unfortunately it did not take my appetite with it. So after about 6 months of denial, while I waited in vain for my beloved metabolism to return to me with my boyfriend making helpful comments like “maybe you are thirsty not hungry?” and me shooting back daggers with my eyes, I sucked it up and got a gym membership! The first of my entire life. The news sent shockwaves through my family and friends!

The problem is I am a social exerciser. The treadmill is my nemesis. My boyfriend describes me on it as “you look like you are being tortured and about to die!” So with that in mind Carly and I started looking for activities to do together. The problem was what to do. It seems like everyday there is a new fitness craze out. I work from home and see infomercials for them all day long. Sometimes I am really convinced that in just 10 minutes a day my stomach CAN look like Janet Jackson’s - circa the wardrobe malfunction, but alas I am not willing to spend the three easy payments of $29.99. Even if I am really getting a value of $150.00 I just cannot bring myself to call within the next 5 minutes. But the other day Carly stumbled across something local and …FREE. For the cheap chicks free is like a homing beacon. We don’t pass up free and it looked intriguing so we decided to try it out…

It’s called Bellyfit. According to the website it’s a “fusion fitness experience for women that blends the power and wisdom of ancient cultures, with the research, technology and trends of the modern world.” It’s basically an exercise class that combines ethnic dances, yoga, pilates, and meditation, and its being offered for free for the month of May because the instructor Hannah Shears has just finished her training and is doing her practicum. Carly and I signed up for the Wednesday class. Unfortunately we got there a bit late. The class was just starting, so we quickly threw our stuff down and ran to the back of the room to start the cardio portion of the class. To be honest the setup was not the greatest. Legends training centre is a mixed martial arts centre and there was other training going on at the same time. It was a bit loud and a little hard to hear the instructor at times but if you watch the person in front of you it’s pretty easy to figure out what you are supposed to do. Also I have to admit that since Legends’ primary consumers are men I was a little self conscious of shaking it in front of a bunch of guys, but after a while I pretty much forgot about them. The good news... the class was a lot fun! Carly and I had more than a few giggles while “serving it up” and “shaking our stuff”! And the best part is that that seemed perfectly ok. Everyone was exercising and dancing and having a giggle! I also definitely broke a sweat but didn’t feel overly challenged or out of breath. The 2nd half of the class was more yoga/pilates inspired. It was a little more relaxing but not quite meditation. Class ended with a traditional yoga namaste which always makes me feel good. I don’t know why, it could all be in my head, but it’s just a nice ending to the class instead of everyone just getting up and leaving.

More good news…because the space at legends is so large Hannah has decided to open up the classes. So even if you are signed up for the Wednesday class you can feel free to come on Monday if you need to or you can even come for both classes if you really want to. So come out and give bellyfit a try. It’s free what have you got to lose? Carly and I will be there perfecting our shimmies!

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Homeless for a Night

Sunday, May 3, 2009
Here in North America, we’re hearing about the recession every time we turn on the news, read the newspaper, or listen to the radio. We constantly focus on how much we lack and breed worry about our future. But if we take a step back to see how much we have, maybe we would feel more gratitude than fear.

We have hot water for a shower, a stove to cook a full meal, heater that keeps us warm in the chilling winter, fan to keep us cool in the scorching summer, computer to connect us to the world, a cell phone to keep in touch with loved ones, a bed to lie on after a long hard day…

The list goes on.

While we’re complaining about how much money we don’t have, the government, or taxes; there are thousands of young people between the ages of 15-18 who are wondering how they’re going to get their next meal, where they’re going to sleep without getting killed, and who they can turn to for a little bit of love.

These teenagers are just like us - they have hopes and dreams, with fragile emotions, and an incredible drive to have a good life.

The Youth Emergency Shelter Society (YESS) is a place where these teenagers can turn to for care and compassion. This year, Canadian Western Bank is sponsoring an event called “Homeless for a Night” on June 12, 2009.

Hundreds of fundraisers will gather at the Telus Field sleeping under the stars and learn about teen homelessness. We will hear stories from past youths who have experienced the profound impact that YESS provided for them.

Cheap Chicks would like to invite you to be part of our team! In 2008, 220 people participated in this event. This year, Cheap Chicks would like to ask for your help to double that number!

Unlike most homeless youth, not only will we not be alone at “Homeless for a Night”, we will also be provided with a hearty dinner, great entertainment, a toasty bonfire, mats/cots/tents at bedtime, and a delicious hot breakfast in the morning. That’s right, it’s a luxury camping trip right here in Edmonton with every dollar raised going to YESS!

Cheap Chicks made a little deal with the Dudes. We are going to have guys vs. girls to see who can raise the most money and recruit the most people to come out and join us for this worthwhile cause. So ladies, our goal is to raise $2,500 with as many women joining us as possible. If each individual raises over $250 each, we will get to pitch a tent! Please click on the link below and register yourself by clicking on “Join Cheap Chicks For A Cause”.


We have 41 days to reach this goal. Cheap Chicks will make each of you a team t-shirt when we reach $2,500! There's nothing more affordable than this! There's no cost to registering and just a little bit of your time to raise some money for this event.

We realize that there are boys who read this blog. If you want to support us, great! If you want to take the boys side (Dudes for a Cause), you can find them here:

If you aren't able to make to this amazing event but would still like to donate, please donate to us individually:

Carly - http://www.gifttool.com/athon/MyFundraisingPage?ID=1312&AID=589&PID=72856
Amanda - http://www.gifttool.com/athon/MyFundraisingPage?ID=1312&AID=589&PID=74177

Here's to providing more homes,
Cheap Chicks