I tried a snappy little pink wine from Southern France a couple weeks back, and it's been top of mind since my first slurp.
Domaine La Gayolle 2019 Les Platanes IGP Var Rosé is a wine grown from clay-limestone soils, built from Merlot, Grenache & Cabernet Sauvignon. It's red berry-driven with hearty squeezes of Ruby Red grapefruit, and a pinch of white pepper. Dry. Delicious. Here in Vancouver, it's imported by Vino Allegro, and just over 20 bucks at private stores like Marquis, Firefly, Village Liquor, and about to hit the list at local Cactus Clubs. It's at once crushable, yet there's a good level of complexity for those who want to ponder each sip for a while.
I wanna wash down fried chicken and ribs with the stuff.
You know where I go most often for take-out for that sort of fare around these parts?
Juke Fried Chicken.
I most often get their 'Juke Box,' where you get a couple pieces of fried chicken, a quarter rack of ribs, and a side. I'm usually an Asian Peanut Slaw Guy, but I've been known to dabble in Fried Pickles. (I'm SO putting that last sentence in my LinkedIn profile.)
This brings me to tackling another element of the post title here.
Breaking Bread is an initiative started by my friend and colleague Shelley McArthur-Everett, and her team at SMC Communications, a local p.r. & media relations agency focusing on hospitality clients. Things were humming along just fine for her and the team until, you know, this whole global pandemic. Restaurants shuttered pretty quick.
And then, some opened for retail items like gift cards and merch. And then others for take-out. And others for delivery. Some did one or two of these things, others did it all. The team built Breaking Bread as a one-stop online destination for independent restaurants, wineries and breweries across Canada to provide, list, and link to their offerings, so us enthusiasts wouldn't have to slog through zillions of listings to figure this stuff out. The initiative has also provided charity support and bolstered businesses in various other ways.
At last count they have over 2000 partners. So, a major pivot for a PR agency that was thriving in a completely different arena just a couple months back.
Being so nimble and savvy has allowed the agency to make much progress, and those professional instincts now look to provide for more progress.
In light of the ongoing oppression of Black people, and the current push for us non-POC to increase our hearts, minds, positions, and actions as allies, Breaking Bread is now pledging to showcase work done by Black industry leaders, and are currently dedicating content on their channels to focus and amplify them, along with providing charitable donations.
First up for a profile they've done is Justin Tisdall, the co-owner of Juke Fried Chicken; he's the remarkably handsome guy in the pic up above. Justin's been a colleague and friend for well over a decade, and has both a charming heart and brilliant mind for hospitality. He can also mix a mean drink, and curate a rad Spotify playlist. He's a community-oriented family man, an industry enthusiast, and a guy who can lift your spirits within seconds of an encounter. I hope to be like him when I grow up.
Please visit their profile of him, and do some clicky-and-follow tapping on the local Black-owned businesses he recommends.
...then go out and get your bottle of Rosé, then pick up your Juke Fried Chicken eats.
Enjoy all of it. And then remember to do the work we should all be doing.
Here are some general resources to assist with becoming a #BlackLivesMatter ally.
Here are some Vancouver-based resources, along with educational Netflix recommendations.
I'll keep sipping, eating, and working towards a better future, too.