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Strategies for healthy holiday eating

The key to healthy holiday eating, or for that matter ANY sensible eating plan, and its vulnerability to the stresses common during the holidays, mood swings, economic strife, or any of myriad opportunities to “be bad just this once”, is the same as for any substantial and long-term lifestyle and behavioral change – sustainability. And the key to the sustainability of any permanent personal change is ATTITUDE.

Wait! I can hear those hard-drives beeping “over and out” right now! But fear not! Believe me, I understand the trepidation toward the cookie-cutter “pick yourself up by the bootstraps” monologue, wielded by so many guru-wannabes who feign the hard-learned and hard-earned wisdom of the rogue-gone-straight. Most advice that dares to don the faux-humble crown of ‘attitude’ seems to fall just short of being a hellfire sermon from on-high, effectively guilting the receiver into placating the guru with the obligatory and contrite head nods that only yield to headaches in the absence of the hovering of said authority figure.

So, what of this holiday eating? It’s remarkably, liberatingly simple: don’t set yourself up to fail! Commit to *sensible* eating that you can live with! Who among us can honestly say that they have unfailingly complied with some oath to, oh, eat 2 servings of Brussels’ sprouts a week, every week, for the past 10 years? Okay 5 years? One year? One serving a week? Ahhha hand went up! Ohhhhyou LIKE Brussels’ sprouts!

Understand? Your plan has to be one you can LIVE with not just your body but your soul! If you are miserable as you stay ever so healthy, what’s the point, gov’nuh? One of two things is gonna break eventually your spirit, or your plan I’m talking about sustainability, here. Your plan isn’t gonna work if you can’t bring yourself to work your plan. The only way to ensure that you are able to work your plan over the long haul, is to be able to find some satisfaction and enjoyment out of not just getting past it but of DOING it.

But we’re not talking about the long haul, right? Just get me through ChristmaHanuQuanza and the two hellacious weeks of my mother-in-law’s visit! But isn’t life already stressful enough, ESPECIALLY during the holidays? Why add to your burdens some lofty sacred vow to swear off all cheesecake and especially Aunt Behemoth-Bottom’s 2-cheese mashed potatoes? The answer isn’t rocket science, I promise. It’s the tried and true but ever thus: “moderation”! Have *a* serving of the delectable spuds, and accompany

Come Over The Lively And Peachy Diners In Deurne

Antwerp is one of Belgium’s most influential provinces. It is best familiar for the charming and light-hearted nature of its folk. It is also known as the diamond capital of the world because 70% of the world diamond trade takes compass in the area. It could also be said that Antwerp is one of the economic capitals of Belgium – this comes as no surprise since Antwerp has long been an economic powerhouse in Belgium, with a successful financial past events dating back to the 1500s. This historical wealth gave rise to the ancient-searching constructions of Antwerp, which are some of the tourist bait of present.

Vacationists are drawn to scarcely any hotspots in Antwerp. Appealing Antwerp tourism destinations include the Cathedral of our Lady, notable for its architectural design, the Steen, noted for it’s archaic castle like structure and the fact that it is one of the oldest edifices within the place; the home of painter Peter Paul Reuben; Antwerp’s urban place Hall erected in the sixteenth century, and the zoo. Don’t forget to check out the Grote Market in Antwerp where vendors regularly sell their wares. Antwerp tourism is a bustling industry because the center has so many spots of leisure!

Aside from the casual stroll and site-seeing, there are other treat and insightful activities that you could do in Antwerp. Fundamental tours in Antwerp include the Port Antwerp journey. The port is the 2nd greatest in Europe and the 5th biggest in the world. This port was one of the instruments of free trade in Europe as it welcomed goods from Asia, Africa, and the Americas. The Antwerp Ghostwalk is a center journey that explores the darker side of Antwerp. The tour tells the collapse of Antwerp due to a succession of wars in days of yore it turned around and became termed it is nowadays.

Antwerp has its own brand of entertainment found in the dated city centre. The Cafe Beveren is a quaint shop frequented by university students, singles, and sailors. There is also an antique organ and jukebox that is played by local talents. The Bourlaschouwburg is a round theatre that was once constructed for the French elite in the 1830′s. Present, you can watch the Het Toneelhuis theatre company display their talent in this theatre. Cartoons is a cinema house for foreign films and independently produced features. You can sit down and take in the cosy atmosphere of the cinema house with your date.

Antwerp stands out from the rest of Belgium when it comes to food. While Brussels is well-known for its chocolate, Antwerp has a delicacy christened “smos” which is made out of bread. It is difficult to say where the ultimate “smos” is, as every character in Antwerp has a various opinion about it, but one well-known store is Jean-Pierre. The friendly humans of Antwerp will gladly direct the sightseers to a compass near the university where the accepted “smos” is served.

The better restaurants in Antwerp do not offer Belgian food, unfortunately. The common food offered is just like the other sites with regard to ethnic food.

Antwerp’s history as a trading hub allowed it to accumulate ethnology and experiences divergent from other places in Belgium. Now, Antwerp is going back to top form economically. Antwerp is one of the minute tourist ports in Europe that is classic and progressive, ready to bring its spirit in the new century.

A Guide to the Restaurants of Brussels, Belgium

Gastronomic delights await foodies on tour in Brussels, Belgium. The local cuisine has a unique flavour and style, but the city also pays homage to cuisines from around the world. Butcher’s Street, for example, is home to a large number of international restaurants that cater to a range of budgets and tastes.

For something local, simple and relatively cheap, head to Les Brassins with its brasserie set up. Patronised mostly by students and locals, the restaurant offers good quality as well as good quantity from a small menu of items.

On the other side of the spectrum, there’s Aux Armes de Bruxelles, which caters to an upmarket clientele with haute cuisine. Everything from the food to the wine is highly praised by those who have visited the restaurant. As a result, reservations should be made in advance as the high price tag doesn’t appear to dissuade customers from filling up all the tables each night.

If mussels in Brussels sounds good, visit Chez Leon. Popular in France, the restaurant serves up mussels, French fries and beer in a variety of ways along with other traditional Belgian cuisine.

Arcadi is one of Brussel’s most popular vegetarian restaurants. The bistro style restaurant offers a lengthy menu with conservative prices. Dig into everything from quiches and pastas to salads and sandwiches. And don’t forget to ask for brussels sprouts to round off your Brussels experience. Arcadi isn’t strictly vegetarian, though; it does offer bacon with some of the dishes and not everyone considers dishes that include eggs to be vegetarian.

Those who would prefer to sample something beyond Belgium’s local flavours (at least for a break from the norm) may enjoy La Kasbah. Serving up the tastes of Morocco, everything from the food to the conversation of the waiters (in Arabic) to the décor is distinctly Moroccan. Try out the popular favourites of tagine, couscous and mezze. Top it all off with a tasty baklava.

A number of restaurants in Brussels are converted from interesting origins. In’t Spinnekopke was once a stagecoach inn and now serves up hale and hearty country cuisine washed down with over a hundred varieties of artisanal beers. Similarly, La Manufacture, which now serves Mediterranean and Asian cuisines, was once a leather goods factory. Not to be outdone, La Quincaillerie, a former hardware store, is now a popular favourite with local businessmen.

In keeping with the varied nature of the city, the restaurants of Brussels, Belgium are just as varied and provide for hours of entertainment…for a foodie anyway.

Travel Information – historical city Kortrijk

Kortrijk, also referred to as Courtrai, is a historical city situated in West Flanders in Belgium. Positioned on the Lys River, Kortrijk was first established by the Romans under the name of Cortoriacum. Possessing a population of over 70, 000 individuals, Kortrijk remains a thriving city: one that is surrounded by many other famous locations, tourist attractions, and popular cities in Belgium. The cities nearest to Kortrijk include Halluin, Menen, Neuville-en-Ferrain, Roncq and Wevelgem, and travellers staying in Kortrijk, will therefore find the attractions in such cities easily accessible during their stay in Belgium. Other popular cities nearby Kortrijk include Antwerp, Bruges, Brussels, Ghent, Liège, Mechelen, Mons, Namur and Ostend.

Famed for its textile manufacturing, Kortrijk started producing both lace and linen as early as the fourteenth century. Tourists will find that Kortrijk is home to a number of spinning and finishing mills, and the Battle of the Golden Spurs actually took place very nearby historic Kortrijk, and the city has established a memorial for the battle in 1906 called the Groeningstraat, just east of the Grote Markt.

Places of interest:

The Municipal Museum of Fine Arts in Kortrijk, also known as the Stedelijk Museum voor Schone Kunsten, is home to one of the finest art galleries in Belgium. The museum holds the extraordinary paintings of the sixteenth century painter, Roeland Savery, as well as the extraordinary works of other painters; a number of archaeological artifacts, ceramics, porcelain, pottery and, because the museum is housed in a seventeenth century patrician house, travellers get the opportunity to enjoy the astounding beauty of Renaissance architecture. The museum is open Saturday through Thursday and is closed on Fridays and special holidays.

Situated in the heart of Kortrijk, tourists will find the Grote Markt, a popular Kortrijk tourist attraction. Within the Grote Markt, tourists can see the World War I memorial, the ruins of the clothes hall, the Grote Markt Belfry, first built in 1307. Additionally, the official town hall of Kortrijk, the stadhuis was built around 1420, still possesses some of its original Gothic architecture and travellers can view the myriad craved statues throughout the building. Finally, if tourists possess an affinity for architecture, while staying in Kortrijk they can view the two large towers that form the Broeltorens: fortification towers established in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries.

Things to do:

Guests in Kortrijk can enjoy a relaxing stroll along the River Lys or they can enjoy the many sites that a historic city like Kortrijk has to offer. Typically tourists rave about the architecture in Kortrijk. Visits can see the Menin Gate, established in 1927; a memorial for the British soldiers who lost their lives in World War I and the Church of Our Lady is just a stroll away from the Broeltowers, a short distance from Grand Place. Outside the Church of Our Lady, the ruins of the original castle that once enclosed the church still remain and the church is the oldest building in the city of Kortrijk. Further, a highlight found in the Church of Our Lady is that site seers can view paintings of all the former rulers of Flanders. Meanwhile, buildings like the Palace of Justice offer a striking contrast in terms of architecture, giving the city of Kortrijk an equally modern appeal.

Food & Drink:

For those tourists looking to get a cultural taste of Belgium’s finest foods, the most popular specialties ordered among dining tourists in Belgium are Endives with Béchamel Sauce, Ardennes Sausages and ham, Belgian Waffles, Mussels and chips, and of course, the favorite traveling treats are Belgium chocolates. While visiting Belgium, tourist may also want to try some of the world-famous beer that Belgium offers: over 400 different brews of Belgium’s famous beer are available, including fruit bear, Stella Artois, Leffe, Hoegaarden, and Duvel, among many.

The Café Rouge-Kortrijk requires no reservations in advance, and has everything a hungry tourist desires. Further, the Café Rouge-Kortrijk possesses ultra modern architecture, its décor is one of sophistication and it is famed for its tea, served with a side of cake and chocolates. Diners have the option of trying fondue, flavored potato chips, soups, salads, waffles served with fresh fruit, and crème brulee, among other fine dining options.

Alternatively, in nearby Wevelgem, tourists can dine at Biggles, a restaurant revered for their fine service and friendly atmosphere, or the La Dolce Vita, at Stationsstraat 10 near the railway station, an Italian restaurant offering pizza and tagliatelli, among other fine dishes. Finally, travellers can enjoy fine wine in almost any of the cafes in Belgium, as many of the sites have a license to sell spirits.

Hotels & Accommodation:

Center Hotel
Bed & Breakfast Full House
Kennedy Hotel
Best Western Hotel Belfort

The nightlife in Kortrijk offers much to the traveler looking for adult fun and entertainment. Further, while staying in Kortrijk, guests will have accesses to unlimited recreational facilities. Nearby Brussels is home to ten theaters, cinemas, discos, and entertaining clubs like the Le Fuse, Les Jeux d’Hiver and The Music Village.

Kortrijk offers more than fine accommodations, dining, as it offers easy accessibility to site seeing adventures. For instance, while visiting the Castle’t Hoge, tourists can bask in the beauty of the International Rose Garden. The Castle’t Hoge demands no entry fee and families can spend the day enjoying the scenic view. Travellers can also relax at any number of the cafes and pubs located in the Grand Place, Kortrijk. Again, many of the pubs offer the national drink of Belgium, beer, and there are over 400 fine varieties to choose from.

All of the sites in Kortrijk are easily accessible. Travellers can visit tourist attractions via rental cars or they can travel by train to other major cities in Belgium. Meanwhile, some tourists choose to cycle along the Lys River and to take in the fresh air and gorgeous view. Essentially, no matter what form of transportation tourists utilize, they will find an extraordinary abundance of things to do, see and enjoy while staying in Kortrijk, Belgium.

Feeding the poor today and everyone on the planet tomorrow: What are the issues, and what can be done to avert a global food crisis?

Averting a Global Food Crisis

Changing Agriculture and food behavior, converting to known superfoods. Both economically and nutritionally create international programs to alter our focus on what foods to grow on a broad scale, and what foods to consume on a daily basis to bring the current food crisis under control. The approximate time frame is 5 to 10 years.

Most foods can be cooked, dried and/or powdered for longer term storage and distribution. As the farmers coordinate with processors and distributors *(a network is essential) with the aid of a World Food advisory and over site board, everyone will get the highest quality nutrition at a fair market price. These published superfoods a just a sample of those that can be grown and harvested by our independent farmers throughout the world. This requires pilot programs to determine what aid and education is appropriate in any given climate area.

Acai palm, acerola, aloe vera juice, apple, aronia berry, bilberry, blueberry, cherry, apple,

cranberry, ginseng, grape seed, grape skin, green tea, mangosteen, noni fruit, pomegranate,

prune, raspberry, reishi mushroom, seabuckthorn, strawberry, white tea, wolfberry , spirulina, hemp seeds, oats, pumpkin, walnuts, Quinoa, wild salmon, tea of all kinds (especially young tea leaves), soy, yogurt, lean meats *dried or powered, whole grains (selected rice, wheat and corn, buckwheat, oats, Quinoa), tomatoes.

The following powdered products are already available (if not cheap. Broccoli Juice Powder, Carrot Juice Powder, Cucumber Powder, Cauliflower, Green Cabbage Juice Powder, Kale Juice Powder, Kelp, Aloe Vera, Parsley Juice Powder, Spinach Juice Powder, Tomato Juice Powder, Brussels Sprout Powder, Asparagus Juice Powder, Green Bell Pepper Powder, Bamboo Shoot, Chicory, Garlic, Ginger, Lo Han Guo, Radish, Red Beet Juice Powder, Spirulina, Watercress.

Spirulina is a form of algae. Spirulina is 65% bioavailable protein by weight and has most of the nutrients necessary to sustain life, including vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and essential fatty acids.

Almost any food product can be dried or powered for safe storage and distribution.

Sprouts,contain all of the nutrition the mature plant will need to develop the next generation. This means that they have a greater nutrient density than the mature plant would have.

Amaranth Sprouts, Broccoli Sprouts, Fenugreek Sprouts, Kamut Sprouts, Millet Sprouts, Quinoa Sprouts and Spelt Sprouts, bean

Travel destinations: Belgium

Although Belgium is one of the smallest countries in Europe, it is one of the most diverse and interesting countries in the European Community. There is a variety of attractive places to visit within this hospitable country. During my visits to this country, I have personal experiences of the following places.

Brussels – The capital and commercial centre of Belgium. Brussels is a fascinating city. It is a unique mixture of old and new and, in many ways as cosmopolitan, both commercially and culturally as London. In addition, it is the centre of the EU, housing its parliament. For those interested in learning more about the politics, this is the city to visit.

Ostend – You have to visit this town around Christmas. At this time of year, they create an ice rink in the town’s main square. In addition, there are the wonderful Christmas Markets, where you are bound to find an unusual gift for those you love.

Antwerp – A busy port, based in the north of the country. However, if you want to impress the one you love, this is the place to take them because Antwerp is also considered the diamond centre for the world. Add that to the fashion centres and it is time to lock up your wallets before you visit, because even the hardest heart will be melted by the sheer beauty of the array of the stones and clothes on show in this town.

Leuven – Leuven is a university town. One of the most striking first impressions this town will make is the unique architectural beauty of its town hall, dating back to around the 1400′s. It is a fabulous structure. With a substantial student population, this town comes to life at night. Spend an evening in the “Bikers Bar” and I guarantee that you will not be disappointed. The nightlife here has to be witnessed to be believed.

Gent – The one area of the world where flower power survives. Although it is a commercial town, Gent is also known for its old meets new architecture and, perhaps most of all, for its flower sales.

Bruges – Nick-named the Venice of the north, Bruges certainly lives up to this. With a maze of canals dissecting the city, this provides an adventure in itself. For those who prefer a more sedate form of transport. It is a very sedate city where one can relax and enjoy an assortment of shops. Dining in experience in Bruges, especially in the winter months when many restaurants provide comfort in the form of open fires.

Belgium, surely a jewel in the European crown.

Recipes: Caramelized brussels sprouts

My first memory of being served Brussel sprouts was at my grandmother’s in Pennsylvania. We had driven from Michigan for Thanksgiving dinner with family. The road trip took longer than usual as the roads were covered with heavy wet snow.

We did not stop to use the bathrooms or eat along the way since we were already behind schedule. The thought of wonderful Thanksgiving smells kept us going. Turkey, stuffing and pumpkin pie , we talked about them all.

Finally we arrived. Famished and in need of the facilities, but the instead of the house smelling luscious, it had a strong, distinct, strong odor. All three floors. That was my introduction to Brussel sprouts.

My grandmother, who relished cooking rarely struck out, but she did this time. She had not taken into account the winter driving conditions and extra time it would take us to drive. Mother instructed us to at least eat a spoonful of the mushy pale green mess, without complaining, or no pie. We did. That was the first and last time I ate Brussels sprouts for nearly a decade.

Years later, I married a gentleman. He was from Belgium and weeks after we wed, we decided to move to Belgium. He had secured a pastry chef postion and while I learned Flemish, I could help his mother at her craft store and his fathers farm.

Besides chickens, geese and rabbits, they grew vegetables. The fields were filled row upon row of potatoes, asparagus, carrots, tomatoes, cabbage, witlof, onions and of course Brussel sprouts. Sprouten, as they referred to it as, out numbered other vegetables.

“It’s my father’s favorite vegetable”, my husband mentioned as I looked around in awe. “He prepares it just so”, he added. This is where I learned this recipe. From Bompa (grandfather in dialect). Good thing I liked it, since we ate it six nights out of seven.



1# Fresh Brussel sprouts, stem trimmed and washed. Outer leaves removed if brown. If large, cut a x into the stem to aid in cooking.

1 cup chicken stock

3 Tablespoons butter

1/2 cup thinly sliced Spanish onions

1 Tablespoon granulated sugar

1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg

salt and white pepper to taste


Place clean Brussel Sprouts into a 1 1/2 to 2 quart vegetable pot with a lid. Place chicken stock in pan. Cover with enough additional water. Cook until simmering lightly. Remove the lid and continue to cook for 12-15 minutes or until tender. Timing depends on the size of the heads.

While the sprouts cook, place the butter into a large saute pan and melt the butter over medium heat, careful not to burn. When melted add the thinly sliced onion. Cook on medium and saute (to jump) them until just past the translucent stage. Remove onion pan from the heat until the sprouts are cooked.

When sprouts are cooked, drain all of the liquid except for 1/3 cup. Return the saute pan with the onions to a medium heat. Add the sugar, stirring continually for a minute of two. Carefully, add the 1/3 cup of liquid from the sprouts.

Cook another minute or two and then add the sprouts. Season with the nutmeg, and salt and pepper to taste. We ate this almost every day but I think they make a wonderful side for garlic roasted chicken.

Healthy Eating With Fruits and Vegetables

Dietary experts recommend that every person should eat at least five servings of fruits and vegetables every day. The importance of fruits and vegetables to a healthy diet has been known for quite some time, but studies have shown that very few people eat the amount of fruits and vegetables recommended for a healthy diet.

That’s a shame, since eating a sufficient number of fruits and vegetables just may be the single most effective thing you can do to improve your overall health. The five a day approach to healthy eating may be the single most important strategy you can adopt for a healthier lifestyle.

The many health benefits of eating fruits and vegetables have been established for quite some time now. Study after study has shown that a diet rich in fruits and vegetables lowers the risk of certain cancers, heart disease and other chronic diseases and conditions. Some studies have suggested that as many as 35% of cancer deaths can be attributed to diet, and that diets high in fats and low in fruits and vegetables contributes to unnecessary cancer deaths.

Fruits and vegetables have a lot of advantages besides just their nutritional importance. For one thing, they taste great and add a great deal of variety to everyday meals. Fruits and vegetables come in such a wide variety of colours, textures and flavours that they can be used in virtually every meal. Those seeking to maximize their consumption of fruits and vegetables should get into the habit of using fruits in salads, as toppings and as garnishes.

In addition to their great taste, fruits and vegetables are packed full of many essential vitamins and minerals, including many micronutrients that are not included in packaged vitamin supplements. For instance, foods like butternut squash, pumpkins, carrots, mangoes, peaches, pawpaws and green leafy vegetables are rich in beta carotene. Beta carotene is vital for healthy skin and eyes.

In addition, most varieties of fruits and vegetables contain vitamin C, another important vitamin and a strong antioxidant. Good sources of vitamin C include Brussels sprouts, citrus fruits, strawberries, broccoli, nectarines and kiwi fruit. Many fruits and vegetables, including spinach, broccoli and avocadoes, are also good sources of vitamin E, another excellent antioxidant.

Men and women alike should always strive to eat a healthy diet, but women have an extra incentive to get all the nutrition they need. Proper nutrition is essential to a healthy pregnancy, and some of the baby’s biggest nutritional needs happen before the pregnancy is discovered. Folic acid is perhaps the best known essential nutrient for pregnant women. Folic acid has been proven effective at preventing a variety of birth defects, including Spina Bifida. Good dietary sources of folic acid include Brussels sprouts, broccoli, spinach and oranges. In addition, due to its importance to women of child bearing years, many common foods such as cereals and breads, are supplemented with folic acid.

In addition to their importance as source of vitamins and minerals, fruits and vegetables also provide essential dietary fibre. Adequate fibre in the diet is important in preventing heart disease and some kinds of cancer.

Another great feature of fruits and vegetables, especially to those watching their weight, is the high nutrition, low fat, low calorie nature of these foods. Fruits and vegetables contain very low levels of fats, and a diet low in fat can be quite effective for long term weight loss. In addition, fruits and vegetables contain no cholesterol, and they are lower in calories than many other types of foods.

With all these things going for them, it is no wonder so many dietary experts recommend eating a diet rich in fruits and vegetables. Not only are fruits and vegetables delicious and nutritious, but they can be quite inexpensive as well. Buying fruits and vegetables that are locally grown, and that are in season, is usually the most cost effective way to get the freshest fruits and veggies at the lowest possible cost.

This buying strategy also helps to ensure a steady stream of new fruits and vegetables every month, as some go out of season while others are just coming in. Trying a variety of different fruits and vegetables, including some you may not be familiar with, is also a great way to create exciting new dishes and prevent you from becoming bored with the same old diet. Whether your goal is to lose weight or just increase your level of fitness, it is hard to go wrong with a diet rich in fruits and vegetables.

Brisbane Singles Scene

Due to its fantastic climate, Brisbane is a great outdoor city. There is plenty to do for the singleton in this busy city. Whether you prefer to hang out in the City Centre, Fortitude Valley, Southbank, or the suburbs, you will be spoiled for choice.

There are numerous night clubs and other venues for the single person to enjoy. Have you tried all of these?

The Belgian Beer Cafe Brussels is located on the corner of Edward and Mary Streets, Brisbane. This is a great place for the beer connoisseur to sample some of the best Belgian and European beers. This is a relaxing environment that is perfect for a Saturday or Sunday afternoon. You can also grab a meal if all that beer starts going to your head.

The Press Club can be found at 399 Brunswick St, Fortitude Valley. This bar has free entry and live music on Wednesday and Sunday nights. This bar is open & nights a week from 7pm till late. Check out the decor with private booths and leather couches. A great place for a drink.

The Beluga Lounge is located on the ground floor of the GPO Hotel, 740 Ann St, Fortitude Valley. This upbeat bar and lounge is very funky, the perfect place for a cocktail. The interior has an interesting combination of eye catching colours mixed with natural hues, but it works.

Brazilian Touch is at 18 McLachlan St, Fortitude Valley and is fantastic for a different night out. Experience salsa dancing, congo line dancing and all the vibrant atmosphere of Carnivale. Audience participation at its best. Grab a friend or arrange a group for an unforgettable night out.

Marystreet Nightclub, located at 138 Mary St, Brisbane, is the perfect venue for a night out and a drink.

Strike Wintergarden, Wintergarden Shopping Centre, Brisbane, is a novel venue for a fun afternoon or night out. Ten pin bowling combined with a cocktail bar, pool tables, dance floor, and karaoke, to mention just some of the features. What more could you ask for? This takes the ten pin bowling alley to a whole new level.

Brisbane River Night Paddles are perfect for those who like to combine their socializing with a bit of exercise. Go kayaking on the river with a guide and then return for wine and nibblies. These paddles are often arranged as singles events.

Dining Out. Brisbane’s mild climate allows for outdoor dining almost all year round. Southbank, Fortitude Valley, and the City Centre all offer a huge range of dining for all tastes and budgets. Joining a singles dining club is a great alternative for those singles short on dining partners. This can be a great way to meet new people while sampling different restaurants. The safe and relaxed environment will ensure conversations flow as easily as the wine.

If you are more of a cultural or sporty person why not try the entertainment section of the weekend papers? You will find enormous listings of entertainments and venues suited to the singles. Another great way to find exciting venues for the single person is to do some research on the net. Start organizing your next singles outing now.

How to pair wines with food

The ability to pair food and wine is a skill that is easily and delightfully developed. As with most skills, learning to perfectly pair wine with meals or appetizers requires practice, however, practicing your attention to flavors is an enjoyable exercise.

The objective of a good food/wine pairing is to enhance both the flavor of the food and the wine. A simple example is that of pairing wine and cheese. A dry complex red wine, such as a Bordeaux or Syrah is well-paired with a creamy cheese, such as brie, because the fats in the cheese affect your taste-buds and alter the way the wine tastes, making it softer and fuller of flavor on the palate.

This same principle is true with all wine and food pairing. When thinking of a wine to go with a meal, you should evaluate the meal for heaviness, strength of flavor, what kind of meats will be served, spice, temperature, and the personal proclivities of those who will be participating in the meal. If you are serving a heavy meal of steak, garlic potatoes, and Brussels sprouts, then you should choose a wine that can stand up to that much intensity of flavor and weight. A light, floral, white wine is not a good choice for such a meal, but a full bodied Red Zinfandel, Syrah, or Cabernet Sauvignon will go nicely. Once you’ve chosen a grape varietal, (the type of grape used to make the wine) next consider which wines you and your guests prefer, as well as the specific flavors exhibited by the different choices. Wines which have flavors of spice, smoke, leather, and terroir (soil) pair well with red meat and grilled food because the complexity of those flavors compliment the flavors of grilled food. Lighter reds, such as Pinot Noir or Cava, pair well with salmon, stews, pasta dishes, and other foods that have weight without being as heavy as cream-based or red-meat dishes.

If you are serving lighter fair, such as seafood, salads, gazpachos, et cetera., consider the fairer side of the wine spectrum. Generally speaking, the lighter the food, the lighter the wine should be. Chardonnay compliments chicken and pork, but a Chenin Blanc is better for scallops or salads. As with the red wine pairings, consider the flavors of the food in conjunction with the flavors of the wine. Pair drier white wines with complex foods, and pair floral and fruity whites with light, simple foods. It may come as a surprise, but a light floral wine pairs extremely well with spicy foods and Asian cuisine. The light floral notes of the wine cool and cleanse the palate between bites. Riesling and Viongier are delicious with Thai food.

With practice you will begin to notice how the taste of your food and wine changes depending upon how they are paired, and this will teach you how to better pair foods in the future. It’s fun to try new pairings, and there are absolutely no rules. Wine and food pairing is all about what tastes best, and if you find an unconventional duo that you enjoy, then you have truly developed pairing skills.