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Thread: Taste of Edmonton 2018

  1. #1
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    “You have to dream big. If we want to be a little city, we dream small. If we want to be a big city, we dream big, and this is a big idea.” - Mayor Stephen Mandel, 02/22/2012

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    Walked through the site yesterday. Looked good. May head over there for lunch today since it's close to work.

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    Awesome to see a good review. I enjoy Taste so I need to stop by...
    Tired of being taken advantage of .

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    The praise for the new site is interesting. Hope it works out well for the future.

    It also may say something about Churchill Sq. and what it is best used for, and best not used for.

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    There was a mention of more seating available at the present Leg site. Where is that? Most people don't really like standing up and balancing drink and plate in hand while trying to eat. Are there a lot of tables on hand? There were quite a few at the former site and we could usually find one.

    Atmosphere is probably better at this Leg site. Also options to make it a huge festival and have say outdoor concerts/drinks in back of leg and more food options there. At Legislature there is no space limitation. I wish it would expand and not just be contained to one plaza. Make it an uber TOE at least for Weekends and it could cope better with crowds. I hear the lineups are bad, which is good news..
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    Was just down there. The new plaza has plenty of seating. There are rows of tables on 99th avenue and on the south side of the plaza. Had to wait a bit to get tickets but that was more due to the teller than the crowds. The lines beside me were moving along a good clip. No real lines for food beyond a minute or so that I could tell.

    I wouldn't say it's better or worse than Churchill, which is plenty big, just different. I am pleased the city has another good space for summer events.
    Last edited by Paul Turnbull; 20-07-2018 at 03:15 PM.

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    I thought it looked like a better place to have it, more seating and open..I stopped going a few years ago, but a friend lives nearby, so we might pop down..

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    Reading some of the feedback in other places my memory of Churchill may be skewed. Been awhile since I went to ToE there since it's a fair walk from my office. Capital Square is nice and close for me so I'm planning on heading over a few times over the next week.

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    Saw one vendor on the news saying he's getting a bigger lunchtime crowd than what he had at Churchill (I think, at least -- I was half-distracted during the broadcast). Will be curious to check it out; glad to hear positive feedback about the new venue in any case.
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  10. #10

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    The site is better than expected I think. There are still some "crush" points at some of the vendors where you can't really move. With that being said I'm not sure if the site seems better because of the location, or if it is better because they had to re-think how they do some things. At Churchill it often seemed they just went with what was done last year.

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Turnbull View Post
    Was just down there. The new plaza has plenty of seating. There are rows of tables on 99th street and on the south side of the plaza. Had to wait a bit to get tickets but that was more due to the teller than the crowds. The lines beside me were moving along a good clip. No real lines for food beyond a minute or so that I could tell.

    I wouldn't say it's better or worse than Churchill, which is plenty big, just different. I am pleased the city has another good space for summer events.
    Thanks for the rundown. I will head out there sometime. Anybody see any good gluten free offerings?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Turnbull View Post
    There are rows of tables on 99th street....
    That's quite a ways to be packing your botulism on a stick.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Top_Dawg View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Turnbull View Post
    There are rows of tables on 99th street....
    That's quite a ways to be packing your botulism on a stick.
    Thanks, fixed to avenue.

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    Closed for tonight due to weather.
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    Quote Originally Posted by IanO View Post
    Closed for tonight due to weather.
    I heard everything on the menu was going to be soup anyway.

    This is one bad storm. Stay and play safe folks.

    btw to anybody reading remove all stuff from highrise decks. The wind speeds are picking up planters, chairs and throwing them around. Anything light is dangerous on a HR deck right now. This storm kicks a punch with its wind speeds. Also virtually vertical rain. If you left windows open today good luck.
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    Do a lot of people have horizontal windows?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marcel Petrin View Post
    Do a lot of people have horizontal windows?
    Good catch, haha, I meant horizontal rain. The wind was just kicking the rain parallel to ground instead of perpendicular. I think I got it right this time.
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    Just for once, I wish for a pleasant summer evening. There's been nothing but unstable weather, thus dampening the mood for Taste of Edmonton.
    “You have to dream big. If we want to be a little city, we dream small. If we want to be a big city, we dream big, and this is a big idea.” - Mayor Stephen Mandel, 02/22/2012

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    Close enough!

    Definitely a strong storm. I was at my office around 4pm when I looked out the window and saw that eerie green-ish color in the sky to the West. As my car is in the shop this week, I immediately bolted out the door to my motorcycle, as I figured I had enough time to get back home (downtown) before the rain really got going. So I didn't put on my rain gear, just jeans and a mesh jacket.

    Let's just say that was a mistake. Honestly though, the wind was the worst. Very sketchy riding when it's gusting like that, especially when you're starting/stopping.

  20. #20

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    This year's location is 1000x better. I was amazed at how much more room there was... I wouldn't hesitate to attend multiple evenings at this new location.

    Churchill was crammed. Wasnt very good if you went with kids...

    Enjoyed the duck wings as one of my favorites.. enjoyed lots of random spicy foods. Certainly couldn't try everything.

    Only slight issue was the beer gardens serving watered down stale old draft... stick to their bottled product if your needing a refreshment.

  21. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marcel Petrin View Post
    Close enough!

    Definitely a strong storm. I was at my office around 4pm when I looked out the window and saw that eerie green-ish color in the sky to the West. As my car is in the shop this week, I immediately bolted out the door to my motorcycle, as I figured I had enough time to get back home (downtown) before the rain really got going. So I didn't put on my rain gear, just jeans and a mesh jacket.

    Let's just say that was a mistake. Honestly though, the wind was the worst. Very sketchy riding when it's gusting like that, especially when you're starting/stopping.
    Yikes. That sounds bad. I've been caught on my bicycle in some bad storms as well wearing t shirt and shorts but the body stays warm if you pedal hard. . Hail hurts...I always wear a helmet which at least helps the head not get pelted with hail.

    Yeah, this storm took like 10mins to go from Beaumont to Millwoods. It was moving along decently.
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    The storms were over before 8 PM so they could have kept things going until the usual 11 PM. If not the food then at least the musical performances. If K-Days, Interstellar Rodeo, Prospects game, etc can stay open...
    “You have to dream big. If we want to be a little city, we dream small. If we want to be a big city, we dream big, and this is a big idea.” - Mayor Stephen Mandel, 02/22/2012

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    Finally made it down to Taste of Edmonton today.
    Got there just after the 11 AM opening until about 2 PM when the rain clouds started rolling in as usual.
    There's plenty more room and lots more seating to choose from, but it still gets crowded as buggery and I can do without the fountains being on. Overall, I'd choose this over Churchill Square by a gnat's whisker.
    Food was hit and miss as always.
    Really crappy wine selection - nothing but various iterations of Barefoot wine (chardonnay, pinot grigio, etc).
    Pop Shoppe is still around so grabbed a cream soda for old time's sake.
    “You have to dream big. If we want to be a little city, we dream small. If we want to be a big city, we dream big, and this is a big idea.” - Mayor Stephen Mandel, 02/22/2012

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    If the city wouldn't schedule every single festival and special event into the same two-month window, we wouldn't have to worry about the paralyzing thunderstorms as much. SERIOUSLY, this city... Put something in friggin' fall! Or late Spring! It's not ALWAYS snowing out!

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    The city isn't doing the scheduling, the festivals are. Take it up with them.

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    Spring and fall are very risky for an outdoor festival...

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    Any outdoor event has these risks. June and September are a little drier on average but also colder. This year is more unsettled than most but in general weather is not a big deal for these events. They always have to close up occasionally because of weather it should be planned for.

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  28. #28

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    Quote Originally Posted by coldrsx View Post
    Spring and fall are very risky for an outdoor festival...
    The worst weather Edmonton has ever had on Black Friday in 1987 was during the Heritage Festival long weekend, our biggest festival. Conventional wisdom would have that as the most sensible time to have a big festival and yet..

    The reality of a Mountain/prairie province is you can have some quick developing weather and oddities and extremes.


    Flying Canoe Festival is in February, routinely experiences -25-30C lows and is my new favorite festival.

    We're a city that embraces the seasons, we have a population that does, our festivals should be more seasonally scattered than they are. Would be nice to have more going on in Fall particularly. Spring can be tricky due to the freeze/thaw cycles.
    "if god exists and he allowed that to happen, then its better that he doesn't exist"

  29. #29

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    Quote Originally Posted by kkozoriz View Post
    The city isn't doing the scheduling, the festivals are. Take it up with them.
    The city gets zero say at all? I know that North American Midway has the schedule pretty much set in stone (they have vintage posters up this year at K-Days, and it seems to have always been set for the same time of year), but EVERYTHING ELSE crammed into the same eight-week period is a little nuts. Not just because of the weather, either.

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    K-Days is set by the schedule of the midway.

    You want a festival set during a different time, contact the festivals directly. The only part the city has in scheduling is making sure there's no overlap in the spaces, i.e. Churchill Square for the Works, Taste of Edmonton, etc.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Replacement View Post
    The worst weather Edmonton has ever had on Black Friday in 1987
    The day I moved to Edmonton... during the tornado... our AC flight had to divert around it. My pops was coming to run the weather service and explain why we didn't have Doppler radar.
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  32. #32

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    Quote Originally Posted by IanO View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Replacement View Post
    The worst weather Edmonton has ever had on Black Friday in 1987
    The day I moved to Edmonton... during the tornado... our AC flight had to divert around it. My pops was coming to run the weather service and explain why we didn't have Doppler radar.

    Unforgettable moments and yours with interesting serendipity. My own story more pedestrian. This was in the days before internet. When news coverage or radio was not constant and we were at Travel Alberta getting the latest weather report (Highway 16 location was close by) when first reports were coming in of the potential strong tornado. We were going to go to Jasper for the weekend but then saw the unforgettable green clouds. Cancelled the trip. Spent the rest of the day cloud watching and news watching. In the whole Edmonton area it was like no other weather day you had ever seen before. We'd had massive storms before with golfball sized hail but nothing that looked quite like this whole massive vortex that engulfed us.
    Last edited by Replacement; 26-07-2018 at 09:59 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by gwill211 View Post
    This year's location is 1000x better. I was amazed at how much more room there was... I wouldn't hesitate to attend multiple evenings at this new location.

    Churchill was crammed. Wasnt very good if you went with kids...

    Enjoyed the duck wings as one of my favorites.. enjoyed lots of random spicy foods. Certainly couldn't try everything.

    Only slight issue was the beer gardens serving watered down stale old draft... stick to their bottled product if your needing a refreshment.
    We went last night with the kids. Probably the nicest night to be there. Easily 1000x better location. More spacious, more scenic, more places to sit, better environment all around. They should honestly have a smaller set up every week or so. Bandstand, some food trucks. That plaza is a gem. Have local radio stations sponsor an evening and bring local bands in that cater to their listeners.
    The plaza/beer gardens section hit capacity around 7p, so there was a bit of a line to get back in, but nothing crazy.

    After we finished in the food area, we took the stroller down to the leg fountains and played there for an hour.

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    I would like to see someone run for mayor that is a proponent of bringing back Klondike Days. All of it. Pull out all the stops. City wide party time. Like Stampede. We were almost there at one time until an Australian nixed it. Then fled.

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    Any reviews of the food at Taste of Edmonton?
    “You have to dream big. If we want to be a little city, we dream small. If we want to be a big city, we dream big, and this is a big idea.” - Mayor Stephen Mandel, 02/22/2012

  36. #36

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    My personal favourites:

    The adobo pork belly and lamb slider from Wildflower Grill.

  37. #37

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    This location is far, far better than Winston Churchill Square. Besides the extra space, the Leg grounds are just a far more pleasant place to be. The whole setup seems much more "finished". WCS seems like a barren wasteland in comparison.

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    The Siga Tibs (Beef Stir-Fry) w/ Injera from Langano Skies Ethiopian Restaurant was really, really good.

    And Lingnan's crack chicken of course. The line there looks long but moves impressively fast.

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  39. #39

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    Some other observations:

    - I've noticed there are lines to get into the "Plaza" area! I guess with liquor laws they can only have so many people in that area (even through it is far from capacity) so at peak times they prevent people from entering. I only had to wait 10 minutes, but still different.

    - This isn't Taste related but more so related to the Plaza itself. The steps near the stage are dangerous for those with vision problems. My wife has vision issues in one of her eyes and struggles to see exactly where the steps are - I had to guide her down them. Usually steps have some sort of marking on them to indicate where the edge is - these ones just blend in.

    - Clearly they are listening to some of the issues raised as I've noticed they've changed the site layout a bit. i.e. on the first few days the information tent was right along 98th Ave and it made it tight along the tents, now they have moved it back a bit into the parking lot which has given the area a bit more room. Plus the layout of the food trucks has switched to be more open. It looks good.

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    Quote Originally Posted by christopherj View Post
    - I've noticed there are lines to get into the "Plaza" area! I guess with liquor laws they can only have so many people in that area (even through it is far from capacity) so at peak times they prevent people from entering. I only had to wait 10 minutes, but still different.
    - This isn't Taste related but more so related to the Plaza itself. The steps near the stage are dangerous for those with vision problems. My wife has vision issues in one of her eyes and struggles to see exactly where the steps are - I had to guide her down them. Usually steps have some sort of marking on them to indicate where the edge is - these ones just blend in.
    .
    The long lines to get in are more for the top/north entrance. The south entrances by the stage/bandstand had no lineups.

    There is a long ramp on the west side of the steps that goes through a nicely landscaped area and avoids the steps. It's there for wheelchairs and strollers, but would work well for what you've highlighted as well. There's a bunch of picnic tables on the ramp as well which were empty and out of the way.

  41. #41

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    Quote Originally Posted by christopherj View Post
    Some other observations:

    - I've noticed there are lines to get into the "Plaza" area! I guess with liquor laws they can only have so many people in that area (even through it is far from capacity) so at peak times they prevent people from entering. I only had to wait 10 minutes, but still different.

    - This isn't Taste related but more so related to the Plaza itself. The steps near the stage are dangerous for those with vision problems. My wife has vision issues in one of her eyes and struggles to see exactly where the steps are - I had to guide her down them. Usually steps have some sort of marking on them to indicate where the edge is - these ones just blend in.

    - Clearly they are listening to some of the issues raised as I've noticed they've changed the site layout a bit. i.e. on the first few days the information tent was right along 98th Ave and it made it tight along the tents, now they have moved it back a bit into the parking lot which has given the area a bit more room. Plus the layout of the food trucks has switched to be more open. It looks good.
    Unmarked steps are a huge problem for many people. Particularly a gradual slope like this where the peripheral vision does not notice a step oncoming. You could sit there anytime of day for 5 mins and see somebody not notice one of the steps when they first built this. Because one doesn't detect much of a slope one does not automatically detect steps are there. With the Legislature, fountains, surrounding views it also distracts from looking directly at the ground. These steps are a hazard. The gradient is such that this entire area could have just been sloped.
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  42. #42

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    Quote Originally Posted by nobleea View Post
    The long lines to get in are more for the top/north entrance. The south entrances by the stage/bandstand had no lineups.

    There is a long ramp on the west side of the steps that goes through a nicely landscaped area and avoids the steps. It's there for wheelchairs and strollers, but would work well for what you've highlighted as well. There's a bunch of picnic tables on the ramp as well which were empty and out of the way.
    Yeah - I saw that after I got to the stage! I think they probably should have been stopping at the south side too but few people went down there (again I think it has to do with the liquor license - not because they wanted to create a line so no blame on them). I still love the fact that the beer gardens in mixed in with the food vendors this year.

    I noticed the ramp on the west side after. Agree it works it just wasn't very obvious (and the main issue is that the steps blend in so well that they are basically invisible to those with partial issues - my wife couldn't even see them until she took a step down without realizing a step was there).

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    I think the Capital Plaza is a great setting. The view of the Legislature and, to some extent, the River Valley. The water fountain features are also great. I could see this becoming another great venue in Downtown Edmonton.
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  44. #44

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    "We can dance if we want to".....

    Was going to check it out tonight but don't have the right hat...

    Good weather for once on a Friday.
    "if god exists and he allowed that to happen, then its better that he doesn't exist"

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    Went back tonight.
    I've changed my mind, the Capital Plaza is a much better location by far.
    They kept the fountains off, plus some of the tables on 99 Ave have been moved for better pedestrian flow.

    Favorite dishes:
    Spicy Lentils and Ingera from Langano Skies
    Tequila Lime Chicken Taco and Rice from Three Amigos
    Bison Cannelloni from Fantasia
    Garlic Steak from Pampa
    Lamb Slider from Wildflower
    Chocolate Caramel Mousse Cake from Vintage Fork
    “You have to dream big. If we want to be a little city, we dream small. If we want to be a big city, we dream big, and this is a big idea.” - Mayor Stephen Mandel, 02/22/2012

  46. #46

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    Just got back from TOE tonight. Absolutely spectacular. Not only great food but basically hours of a street party going on with the DJ there and playing some really good house or Electro or whatever they call it now. Really got all ages moving and a REALLY good vibe to this that is different than any event at Churchill. So that there are no disturbances, peaceful, fun, no drunks hanging around. This was really our best experience at TOE EVER. They knocked it out of the ballpark. Seemed to be many more participants and the offerings were good.

    We hit up 3amigos, Tequila lime Chicken Taco w/ rice. Wish it was bigger it was so good, and gluten free.
    Noodle salad at Noorish was also great, GF, and lots of veggies in there. One of the more substantial servings available on the day. Wife had the Chocolate banana with almonds which was to die for. Lets just say this was not standard chocolate, it was dark connoisseur. Also GF.

    Had the bison carpaccio with salad. GF. They could spare a bit more salad but its only a 2 ticket serving and the Bison was excellent.

    Had the Mango something or other drink to cleanse our palates. 36bucks all in for everything, not too bad.

    Did I mention the weather? GLORIOUS. Bonus that you could sit on the grass and watch the entertainment.

    Fantastic evening, well worth it, and glad we didn't go last night as I loved the beats tonight. Really good job.

    Plus young ravers out there showing older folks how to dance to this. How awesome is that?


    Would have to say as well a shout out to the NDP for stepping up and amending Leg regulations so they could have drinking on site for people that wanted to. The event was so enjoyable though (we didn't drink) it was more than fine with or without booze. Plus no overdrinking was going on so that was positive too.
    Last edited by Replacement; 29-07-2018 at 12:15 AM.
    "if god exists and he allowed that to happen, then its better that he doesn't exist"

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