Quench your thirst with Odd Couple restaurant

Andy Yuen of Saskatoon’s Odd Couple restaurant shows us how to shake off the heat with this signature cocktail

Nothing complements summer heat like a nice cold drink. Lucky for us, Odd Couple restaurant’s Andy Yuen is here to share the delicious secrets behind his signature refresher—the Grape Gatsby cocktail.

Take a peek at his tutorial below and give this seasonal sipper a try yourself. New to the cocktail scene? Don’t worry. Most of the tools you see in the video are available right now at your local London Drugs.

Grape Gatsby Cocktail

This version of the cocktail is non-alcoholic—but Andy says we could add an ounce of vodka if we were in the mood!

8-10 grapes
2 leaves Thai basil
1 wedge’s worth of lime juice
1:1 Sprite and Soda

● Chill glass by filling it with ice and cold water.
● Add grapes to cocktail shaker.
● Warm Thai basil in hand for about 3 seconds, to help release aroma. Add basil to shaker.
● Muddle grapes and Thai basil until as much grape juice as possible comes out.
● Add lime juice and 1 scoop of ice into shaker. Shake well.
● Double strain into martini glass.
● Add equal amounts of Sprite and soda to top off glass.
● Serve…and enjoy!

There you have it. Summer in a glass. If you’re ready to give it a whirl, here are a few links to the equipment and ingredients Andy used—including that super cool penguin:

Luminarc Rika Rumbler Set – 16 piece
Penguin Chill Ice Cube Tray
Small Yellow Handheld Juicer
San Pellegrino
Fresco Granite Mortar & Pestle

Proudly Canadian Brand Stories – Bremner’s – Pure Juice That’s Good For a Whole Country

Terry Bremner, Founder of Bremner Foods, describes their company in typically understated Canadian style. “We’re just a company on the farm, trying to make the best product in the world,” he says. From their roots in the rich soils of Delta, BC, Bremner Foods is literally growing Canadian success from the ground up.

It all started with local land, and local berries.

Bremner’s is family owned, by 3rd generation blueberry and cranberry farmers. “My parents came to Delta in the 1950’s, and we’ve been doing various farming in the Delta area since then,” Bremner says. Two mainstays of their line are pure blueberry and cranberry juice. Both of these berries are native to North America and grow particularly well in BC. “On two sides of our property is Burns Bog,” Bremner continues, “It gives the berries a more intense flavour, being close to their native soil.”

Better juice for healthier Canadians

“Our goal is to make premium products that are healthy and nutritious,” says Bremner, “All the hard work and dedication is worth it when customers tell us that our juice is the best, or how our juice is helping with medical issues.” Berries are well known for their antioxidant content, especially blueberries. One jar of Bremner’s contains the pure juice of two-and-a-half pounds of blueberries, providing a natural Canadian health boost. Bremner puts it simply: “Your fuel that goes in you is your energy that comes out.” The Bremner team proves the point, participating in 50-kilometer races and other events, fueled by Bremner’s Juices.

Premium, clean, quality and workmanship – Canadian values straight from the farm.

“Canada is known for the best country, clean air and water, and quality products.” Bremner says. And these values are shared with their London Drugs partnership. “We have been in London Drugs for over 10 years. We really appreciate London Drugs being a Canadian company, and the Louie family’s long Canadian history.”
We’ll toast to that – with a tall cool glass of Bremner’s juice.

Shop for Bremner’s juice online at LondonDrugs.com.

Proudly Canadian Brand Stories – Hardbite Chips – Real Canadian People, Places and Flavour

“Honestly, our packaging is one of our most Canadian statements,” says Hardbite Marketing Manager Darlene McIntosh, “ It is with Canadian-made pride that we designed our packaging to profile Canadian destinations with nature-loving lifestyle imagery.  On every bag we feature the Canadian flag, and a real place with real people.”

But what you see on the shelf is just the beginning. Hardbite Chips have Canadian qualities right to the bottom of the bag.

Independently owned, and proudly made right here in BC.

Hardbite Chips are made in Surrey, in British Columbia’s only potato chip manufacturing facility. There, chips are cooked in small batches, for the ultimate in crunch and taste. Company ownership is local, too. The people that run the company work in the same building as the people who run the spicing drums.

“Made in Canada is a badge of honour,” says McIntosh, “And as an independently owned Canadian company, we will continue to wave that flag proudly.”

Fun Chips, with Serious Canadian Values

Like the potatoes they use, the Hardbite philosophy is solidly rooted.

“When people choose to buy Canadian, that means they are choosing to support their community, grow the economy, and sustain a strong and fairly treated workforce,” says McIntosh, “Beyond that, buying Canadian also means peace of mind, as manufacturing is highly regulated, consumers can be assured products are safe.”

But the Hardbite team never likes to be too heavy. “We communicate with each other, we say what we mean and we don’t hold back,” says McIntosh, “Because snacking should be fun, people!”

Keep on Exploring, Keep on Snacking!

The Hardbite philosophy is inspired by Canada’s wide open spaces. It’s a sense of adventure that has led to the development of an amazing array of flavours, including such ‘out there’ varieties as Spicy Dill, Chipotle Raspberry Parsnip and a whole line cooked in avocado oil.

“We love exploring,” McIntosh continues, “Whether it’s going for a long walk in the woods or blasting down a muddy mountain trail on a bike, it’s all about celebrating nature. And what better way to celebrate an adventure than to scarf down a bag of all-natural chips that taste awesome.”

Bring it on!

Shop Hardbite products online here.

Simple, Spicy, Local Inspiration

Chef Cullin David of Vancouver’s ​Calabash Bistro​ ​shares some of his favourite Carribean-inpsired recipes.

It’s the height of BBQ season and we’re guessing you can’t wait to fire up that grill! We’ve asked Chef Cullin to help out with a few delicious dishes that are perfect for grillin’ and chillin’. If you haven’t already, check out his video, get inspired, then dive in here with all the details. Remember, pretty much everything you see is available at your favourite London Drugs!

 

Jerk-Rubbed Flank Steak

Simple, tasty and not too pricey — there’s a reason chefs everywhere love flank steak. Here’s the full breakdown of Cullin’s awesome spice rub. There’s a lot in there, but that’s where the magic is!

SPICY JERK RUB: (use approximately ½ tablespoon each, but feel free to adjust, that’s part of the fun)
Dry Onion
Dry Ginger
Dry Garlic
Dry herbs – Thyme, Cilantro, Parsley, Basil, Coriander (aka Cilantro seeds)
Dry Hot peppers
Brown sugar
Cloves
Allspice
Cinnamon
Black Pepper
Cullin’s custom Hot Pepper blend:
*habanero
*pimento
*Scotch Bonnet
*Jamacian Chocolate Brown peppers

INSIDE TIPS:
•Pat the flank steak dry before adding the spice rub.
•Take the steak from the fridge about 15 minutes before you plan on grilling. A super cold steak can throw off your grilling time.
•Grill over medium heat for about four minutes a side, rotating the steak 90˚ once per side
•Let the steak rest for half the time it spent grilling (about four minutes) — that keeps the juices from spilling out once you slice it.
•Speaking of slicing, always cut across the grain of the steak or it’ll be too chewy. •Dry rubs give a nice crust — if you prefer without, add a little oil to the rub and presto, wet rub!

 

Grilled Green Sauce Portobello Mushrooms

These days a lot of folks are looking for smart, simple plant-based alternatives to classic summer dishes. Here’s one way to use Cullin’s simple (ok, simple-ish 🙂 green sauce. Simple name, but such complex flavours!

Green Sauce
Basil
Cilantro
Parsley
Thyme
Basil
Celery
Onion
Garlic
Lime
Pimento pepper/habanero/scotch bonnet
Sea salt
Veggie oil

Combine all the ingredients together in a food processor or blender — use about a tablespoon of each herb, with salt, garlic and lime to taste. Add a generous spoonful to the underside of the mushrooms and grill over medium heat on just the one side (sauce side up) until they’re juuuuust marked by the grill — about three or four minutes.

INSIDE TIPS
•To remove the mushroom stems, give ’em a pinch and a twist.
•Don’t forget to remove the gills or you’ll get discoloration.
•The Green Sauce also makes a great condiment — use it like a pesto.
•Grill over mellow, medium heat — maybe it’s time to use that top rack on your grill!
•To serve, slice your mushrooms into strips. Enjoy!

And a super simple couscous side dish.

Cullin told us he loves using the instant couscous he finds at London Drugs. Check it out here.​ He adds a little lime juice and a handful of fresh herbs to brighten it up even more, and that’s it!

Thanks for taking a walk on the spicy side with us. Hope your summer grilling is in full swing, and we hope you love your finished dishes as much as we loved making these with Cullin.

Here are some links to the equipment Cullin used to create these amazing dishes:
Grill brush
Mixing bowls
Basting/Pastry brush
Blender/hand mixer
Cutting board

Proudly Canadian Brand Stories – Que Pasa Foods

 



Que Pasa Foods – Multicultural Chips Made in Canada the Authentic Mexican Way

“Canada is all about diversity, and so is Que Pasa!” says Arjan Stephens, President of Que Pasa Foods. “Last year we celebrated Que Pasa’s Mexican origins through our limited-edition Day of the Dead chips, and earlier this year launched a new flavour, Korean BBQ, as a way to pay homage to our country’s great Asian cultural influences.” This great Canadian Chip company has authentic roots and products that bring the fiesta to any backyard or kitchen event.

Born and raised in Vancouver, now part of the amazing Nature’s Path Foods family

Que Pasa started out as a street-front deli in Vancouver in 1983. Today, as part of the Nature’s Path Foods family, they remain family-owned, and continue a deep social and environmental commitment to organics and sustainability.

“We’re proud that no one makes tortilla chips the way that we do – our unique approach uses all organic and non-GMO ingredients and whole corn kernels that are ground between hand-cut Mexican volcanic lava millstones,” says Stephens, “.This is how it was done in Mexico centuries ago – you can’t get more authentic than that!”

Every chip makes a difference.

Being Proudly Canadian is more than just the red & white chips Que Pasa releases every Canada Day. It’s a commitment to craftsmanship, people and the land.

“When people buy Que Pasa products, they know they are supporting organic agriculture,” Stephens continues, “ And food artisans who put 1000% of their effort and energy into crafting the most delicious, organic, hand-crafted chips, salsas and tortillas.”

The Que Pasa manufacturing facility in Delta, BC, was the first production facility in Canada to be given a Zero Waste Certification from Green Business Certification Inc, and the company is eagerly working towards their next goal: being climate neutral by 2020.

Being Canadian is all in the family.

London Drugs and Que Pasa are both Canadian companies founded by families, and we share values that go beyond the shelf.

Like Arjan Stephens says, “London Drugs is another family-run business that leads with their hearts. We love working with the London Drugs team and how we’ve joined together to help ensure organic food is accessible to Canadians!”

You could say we go together like chips and salsa.

Shop Que Pasa products on our website here.

4 Ways to Bring Your Outdoor Space to Life

If planned right, a backyard or balcony space can be a personal oasis. By optimizing your outdoor space, you can greatly expand your living area during the summer months. Truly livable outdoor spaces share a few common elements. Follow these 4 simple ideas to transform your outdoor space into your personal dream garden.

1 – Entertaining area

To enjoy the outdoors, first and foremost you’ll need a place to sit. The joy of entertaining outdoors is you don’t always need a formal dining area or fancy dinnerware! A relaxed environment like this Collection Cosetta patio set is the perfect lounge set up for relaxing with a beverage and can double as a dining area for your next BBQ. If you’re looking for a dedicated dining space, this Collection metal foldable table set will allow you to have lots of room for all your guests to dine. In a tighter space, the Collection Bella folding bistro set is perfect for even the smallest of balconies. No matter the space, large or small, a seating area is the first step and we have a wide assortment to get your outdoor space comfortable.

2 – Outdoor kitchen

When enjoying the outdoors at home, you don’t want to trek to and from the kitchen. An outdoor kitchen doesn’t require a fancy built-in grill! It can be as simple as a dedicated surface to cook with a BBQ. The Kenmore pedestal 3 burner gril BBQ has everything you need, including two side tables for food prep. Another option is The Camp Chef XTG pellet grill which is a backyard powerhouse. It can slow smoke or grill any meal to perfection! While talking food, you’ll need to ensure you keep your beverages cold! We have some of the coolest coolers around. Like this unique van cooler. If you’re looking to save on space, this foosball cooler cart has a built in foosball table top, doubling as an entertainment centre that is sure to be a hit for all ages.

3 – Shade

Soaking in some rays is one thing that makes the summer special, however too much sun can be problematic. Making sure you have some shade is a great way to make the space livable at all times of day. The Collection aluminum pergola is a great option. Complete with two shades (one grey and one beige) it can be full shade, half shade or no shade depending on your needs. Also, its aluminum frame is sure to endure years of use. For something smaller a fiberglass windproof umbrella is a great option that is easy to move. For a more robust shade, the Bond offset umbrella is available in various colours and can cover your dining area with no obstructions or center pole. If you are working with a small balcony, this universal umbrealla for an outdoor chair is perfect as it will mount to any chair, and is also great for days at the beach.

4 – Ambience

Now that you have a sitting area, some shade, and a place to prepare your food, it’s time to add the final touches. Backyard ambience can be anything from décor to lighting. Solar lighting is a great way to add highlights to a large space without the trouble of connecting power. No matter your taste, we have a wide assortment of solar lighting options. Another final touch is to add some planters and garden décor.


From resin planters, to ceramic and even wood, there are a wide range of styles available to match any aesthetic. Add in some unique garden accessories like this Collection bird bath, and your personality is sure to come through. If on a balcony or in an urban area, a fountain like this unique Collection fountain with LED lights can help cut the background hum of the city streets and add a tranquil vibe. Lastly, a fire pit can turn relaxing evenings into a camping-like experience (but where you still get to sleep in your own bed!) Whether a table top, or stand alone unit, we have various options to fit any space.

No matter what you do to your outdoor space, we can help you transform it into an extension of your living area that can easily become your favourite place in the house. Shop our outdoor living collection today to have your dream back yard tomorrow.

Locally-made ShylaSpreadsHope Masks to support vulnerable childhood cancer patients in British Columbia becomes part of London Drugs’ Local Central program

June 4, 2020 – When we learned the story about the Tang family having to close their dry clean and tailoring business and a recent tragedy they faced, our family businesses entered into discussions with theirs about how London Drugs might be able to provide assistance. When the family’s small business Sew Clean had to close due to COVID-19, the Tang family switched to making masks with proceeds going to Childhood Cancer Family Support Society, an organization that greatly helped their five-year-old daughter prior to her tragic passing in December. Now, the family’s ShylaSpreadsHope masks will be available for purchase at six of our locations beginning Monday, June 8.

“When my daughter, Shyla, was going through her cancer treatment, Childhood Cancer Family Support (CCFS) was there for us emotionally and financially,” said Victoria Tang, ShylaSpreadsHope Masks. “After learning that their fundraising events were cancelled due to the pandemic, I wanted to help raise money for the non-profit organization. I began sewing fabric facemasks for people and raising funds. Since then I have created a team of local seamstresses to fulfil on production. ShylaSpreadsHope is a way to honor my daughter’s memory, by giving back to the community and spreading love and hope. In the midst of our darkest times, I know we can get through anything as long as we work together and continue to show kindness and compassion. I am so grateful to London Drugs for their willingness to support this cause, helping Shyla spread hope”.

The masks are currently in production with inventory to be made available at the following locations: Brentwood Mall in Burnaby, and in Vancouver at Broadway and Vine, Dunbar, Hastings and Abbott, Kerrisdale and Olympic Village. The masks are available in adult and children’s sizes in five colours at a cost of $12 with all proceeds going back to ShylaSpreadsHope. Three dollars from every $12 purchase will go to Childhood Cancer Family Support Society.

“All of us at London Drugs are particularly moved to be able to help the Tang family in their efforts to reignite their business as part of our Local Central program while supporting Childhood Cancer Family Support at the same time,” said Clint Mahlman, president and chief operating officer, London Drugs. “We are in the midst of a mask-wearing era and kudos to this family who have had much heartache and grief to be able to pivot to making masks when their business had to close.”

Customers can find the ShylaSpreadsHope masks in the six locations’ Local Central section. Local Central was launched in April in response to small businesses being severely impacted by COVID-19. The list of Local Central businesses being supported continues to grow and the current list can be found here:  https://londondrugs.com/local-central.html

 

ABOUT ShylaSpreadsHope Masks

ShylaSpreadsHope is a fundraising and community-building initiative created in loving memory of Shyla Ann Tang, who courageously battled a rare form of childhood cancer for three years before passing away at the age of five. In honour of Shyla, we are giving back and fundraising for Childhood Cancer Family Support. This charity helps families who are struggling with the financial burden of taking care of their child with cancer or blood disorder by providing them with financial aid and community support. After closing the doors of our Dry cleaning and Alteration shop, my team and I are committed to making quality comfortable fabric face masks for the community. Each mask is made locally with TENCEL Lyocell fabric which is breathable, soft, lightweight and biodegradable. Each mask comes with a filter pocket and is washable / reusable. For every mask sold, $3 will be donated to Childhood Cancer Family Support Society.

 

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