Storefront

Employees at the Elegant Pantry, L-R: Kathryn Banoub, Alison Power, and Laura Horner.

Emilie Bourque and Sydney Blackmore, live from the front.

Hello Scopefans! Well, this week’s column was a treat to put together for you since I teamed up with a gal named Sydney Blackmore. As I prepare to move to Halifax for journalism school, she’s preparing to deliver top-notch local business news to all of you. So, I’m handing over the reins to her, but first I wanted to bid my lovely readers farewell—thanks for your support, take care of yourselves, and enjoy the rest of this summer heat!

New elegance
There is a new store in town for all you home entertaining aficionados and kitchen gadget-lovers. Located at 282 Water Street, above Island Designs and Gifts, The Elegant Pantry has you covered in the housewarming/wedding/bridal shower gifts department. They specialize in accessories for fine and casual dining, and if you stop in for a peek, you’ll find everything from candles and cooking gizmos to serving dishes and stemware.Marilyn McLean, who owns both Island Designs and Gifts and The Elegant Pantry, says it was time to utilize the second floor of her shop.

“I wanted to go with a line of products that would be of interest to tourists and local people,” she says. One product exclusive to the store is a line of mouth-blown and hand-painted stemware from Romania. Most other products McLean orders from across Canada.

For all it’s worth
Creeping milk prices are a new trend that’s moo-ving across the island. Ethanol fuel is the culprit, according to the ‘Milk Man’, Mr. Harry Burden, executive director of Dairy Farmers NL. The world’s growing demand for fuel has meant that a number of corn fields once used to produce animal feed are now being used solely for ethanol production, which is driving up the cost to feed our lactating friends.

Escalating fuel costs to transport goods to the island are another factor contributing to pricey milk. Dave Collins, Vice President of Operations at Central Dairies, confirmed the latest increase in fluid milk prices occurred on June 30. Other dairy products, like cheese, yogurt and ice cream, remain unaffected, although they too may be vulnerable to price inflation in the future.

To get the most moo juice for your moolah, here’s a sampling of milk prices offered throughout St. John’s: Stockwoods (Freshwater Rd)—$4.19 per 2L; Breen’s (Logy Bay Rd), The Market/Moo Moos (King’s Rd), and Philly’s Mini Mart (Airport Heights Dr)—$3.99, Needs (Military Rd) and Sobey’s (Ropewalk Lane)—$3.77, Marie’s Mini Mart (Blackmarsh Rd)—$3.69, and Dominion (Lake Avenue)—$3.61

Heart of a Gypsy
After 5 years at 195 Water Street, upscale restaurant The Gypsy Tea Room is moving to the Murray Premises. After closing up on July 31st, they are going to re-open soon after at the former Liquor Store location down the street.

Owner Emir Mahic sends out a huge thank-you to patrons for all of their support.

“We’re going to improve the menu, the wine list and the facilities, and I’d like everybody to come over and try us out,” he says.

Tea bones
In other tea room news …I stumbled upon a very different kind of tea room last week, one that I can’t believe I’d never heard of before. Tea in the Crypt.

For the last twelve years during the months of July and August, the church women at the Anglican Cathedral have been hosting a summer tea room for anyone with a hankering for afternoon tea and homemade dainty treats.

Ann Abraham, one of the organizers, says there are at least a hundred people involved each summer, including women from their own church and other churches too, who act as hosts, servers or bakers. Located in the basement crypt of the cathedral, one thing they don’t advertise is how deliciously cool it is down there on a hot summer’s day.

The tea room operates each weekday from 2:30-4:30pm, and $8 even will get you a cup of tea or coffee, several assortments of scones, cookies, tea biscuits, and breads (seconds are an option!), and little dishes filled with jams, butter, and whipped cream.

Against the Norm-ie’s
Winner of the Best of St. John’s Best Thursday Night category, Normie’s, is getting a facelift. The drinking oasis attached to the George Street Jungle Jim’s eatery has been under construction for two weeks now and rumours are circulating that an Irish pub is slated to be built on the site. No official re-opening date has been released.

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I was amused by the response of VOWR’s Geoff Peters to the use of the phrase “that old people one in the Church”. I suspect it wasn’t so much a slight by the Scope as an admiring inclusion of an 85-year-old conservative institution into the pages of a breezy, alternative newspaper. Surely there’s room for both!

12 February 2009

  1. Isis Childers · February 12, 2009

    Interesting history. Do you have any of the sources like the Agula von Grumbach one you mentioned? It’d be interesting to read what they had to say!

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