Well now. That was a fairly relaxing vacation. Not quite as relaxing as I’d intended, but not bad overall. I’ve been in Nova Scotia for a little over a week, and barely looked at work email at all. I flew here with Lindsay (my girlfriend, whose family is also from here), had lunch at a pub near her mom’s house, and dropped her off before getting on the road.
I then spent five days at my family’s farm, and it was just as uneventful as I’d hoped: nothing but family time, eating, crib games, eating, sleeping, eating, playing with dogs, eating, eating, then eating, and also some eating.
After the annual family reunion in Truro, a quick gathering in St. Margaret’s Bay, a speed run back to Truro to pick up the luggage I’d forgotten on the farm (which brother #2 very graciously brought half-way), and a hot turkey sandwich (turns out I like these, after years of thinking I didn’t) I was back in Halifax, enjoying some city downtime. Some highlights:
- Coffee at the Bishop’s Landing outpost of Smiling Goat
- Excellent finds (Lightfoot & Wolfville‘s Pinot Noir and reserve Chardonnay; Domaine Saint Jean du Barroux La Pierre Noire; a bottle of TH Wines cab merlot which I brought as a thank-you gift for dinner) at Bishop’s Cellar
- The best lasagna I’ve ever eaten
- A few rounds of Taboo, a game I wish my family had played when I growing up
- O’Hara’s Leann Folláin, a nice little strong stout I’d received as a gift
- Cappuccino with brother #1 at Julien’s in the Hydrostone
- Brunch, also with brother #1, at Black Sheep. He had breakfast poutine; I had the fried chicken sandwich and a very spicy Caesar made with pork jerky and steak spice.
- A look-around inside the new Port (up-scale version of the NSLC) which netted a rare find, at least for an Ontarian: Kavalan Taiwanese whisky.
- A look around brother #1’s beautiful new home.
- Rogue One
- Coffee and some exceptional macarons from Le French Fix
- Pre-dinner drinks (Oban, gin + tonics) with Lindsay at my hotel bar
- Dinner with brother #1 at Primal Kitchen, a newish carnivore-friendly spot just off Spring Garden. The tuna was very nice, the charcuterie was excellent, and my short rib was delicious. Would definitely go back.
- Lunch with my old friend MLK (and her two daughters) at Piatto
- Coffee with brother #1 at Trident
- A drop-in at brand-new brewer Tidehouse
- A tasting (rye, whiskey, rum) at the Halifax Distilling Company
- A walk along the (very windy) waterfront
- Dinner (slow-cooked leg of lamb) at brother #1’s house
- Way too much Coldstream Clear homemade apple pie
I had a lot more planned for the weekend, but Friday and half of Saturday turned into something else entirely, for which I cut my Halifax visit short. I did manage to get back into the city just in time to celebrate New Year’s Eve with Lindsay, though, at a Codapop house party.
Happy 2017 everybody!