Monday, June 19, 2017

Two Cowboys: Hipster Dressing With Authentic Canadian Plaid Flannel Shirts at Rocky Mountain Flannel Company in Banff, Alberta

The Original Hipsters


When you think Canada, you yearn for cozy winter nights in front of a fireplace and softly falling snow outside the window. Inevitably, your mind's eye wanders to all that is familiar about Canadian winters. The smell of apple cider, pie in the oven, and the snug feeling of soft flannel against your skin. You know you are home. Flannel is as Canadian as the word "eh". It is as authentic as your granny's smile.

What is flannel? It is a soft woven fabric. Flannel was originally made from carded wool or worsted yarn but is now often made from either wool, cotton, or synthetic fiber. Flannel may be brushed to create extra softness (which makes it ideal for keeping warm) or remain unbrushed. Brushing is a mechanical process wherein a fine metal brush rubs the fabric to raise fine fibers from the loosely spun yarns to form a nap. Typically, flannel has a nap on either one side or both sides. If the flannel is not napped, it gains its softness through the loosely spun yarn in its woven form.

Flannel is commonly used to make tartan clothing, blankets, bed sheets, and sleepwear. The term "flannel shirt" is often used to mean any shirt with a plaid or tartan pattern.


Please become a patron of ours: Click Here


Flannel's origins can be traced back to 17th century Wales where farmers wore flannel shirts to protect themselves from the elements. This tradition would continue for other blue collar workers as the prevalence of flannel grew. The word "flannel" most likely comes from the Welsh word gwlanen, meaning "woolen article." 

Not many people know that the Bow Valley in the Rocky Mountains of Alberta has its very own flannel garment company. Gayle Houlton is the founder of Rocky Mountain Flannel. It is a business with a history that spans almost three decades. Her background in pattern making and design, and her extensive experience in retailing helped Gail to create a thriving little apparel jewel with a beautiful store that she recently relocated from Canmore to Banff. 

Rocky Mountain Flannel Company has flannel pajamas, nightgowns, pants and shirts and deliciously warm flannel bed sheets. Every product is researched and tested for quality, fit, wear and tear. In exchange for good honest feedback, Gayle often gives a new item to friends and family to try out and review. “Believe me, they are honest!” It is like dressing your children, she shares with us. They will tell you exactly what they like and dislike.

Observations


Garment manufacturing is not a kind of business you associate with the prairies and mountains of Canada. On the other hand, garment design, retailing and distribution are again growing in popularity. Enterprising designers are taking advantage of flexible sourcing opportunities. It allows them to address the localized needs of a discerning and increasingly demanding clientele.

Good quality fabrics can easily be sourced from all over the world. Combine this with cost effective small batch manufacturing, and it opens up opportunities for designers to craft unique items for their local markets. Clients are turning away from uniform, poor quality, lookalike, and almost disposal clothing articles in discount stores, according to Gayle. They are shifting towards higher quality, locally sourced, better designed and more comfortable fitted garments.

Call it the hipster movement if you like, and call it out for its non-conformist flannel wearing patrons. As far as we are concerned, wearing flannel is about being Canadian. It is also about supporting Gayle to make us our favorite shirts we proudly wear because they are nice! We like wearing our Rocky Mountain Flannel shirts, especially when it is cold outside.

Hendrik van Wyk
Flannel Cowboy

We earn our livelihood from producing great content and supporting inspiring people, businesses, and communities. We use Patreon to help us earn from our work. Please become a patron at http://www.travelingcowboys.com if you want to see more of this and other stories.


Photos

Underwear?

For Grown up Hockey Players

Winter Shirts

Snuggles

For Her 

New Beginnings in Banff

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Traveling Cowboys: It is All In the Community and the Lube at the Annual Soap Box Derby 2017 in Okotoks, Alberta

Unbelievable


We checked in at the annual Okotoks Soap Box Derby to see how a community came together to build something, compete, race downhill, fall off, crash, repair, get back up, win (or lose) and have fun doing it all on a Saturday in early Summer 2017, and doing it for a good cause. 

I know what you are thinking. "You must be joking!" There are so many contradictions in the sentence above that it is unbelievable how an organization can still pull it off in today's world, let alone get away with it for almost three decades in a small Alberta town going by the name of Okotoks.


Please become a patron of ours: Click Here



Where do kids still build things with Dad, Grandpa, Uncle or Aunty? Surely, they can buy one at Walmart or a super duper one at Costco? 

Why on earth are kids encouraged to compete? In today's world, there should be no need to compete. Resources should be shared and redistributed equally, so everyone gets a chance. Doing something as dangerous as racing down a street at 35+ km/h is totally irresponsible. Doing it with sneakers, costumes or short pants, and only a helmet for protection is negligence on the parents' part. 

Someone should do something! Is there no bylaw or regulation that can stop it? And then there is the "uber-evil" of declaring somebody a winner. How dare they! Think of the emotional trauma of all the losers and the future medical expenditure for dealing with ongoing depression and the resulting low self-esteem.

Soap Box Racing


We are so glad that there is a Soap Box Derby in Okotoks. This is the world in which we want to live.

We want to be in a world where people are encouraged to make things. Where kids work with family and friends and innovate to compete, learn, adjust and win. The world, where calculated risk-taking is encouraged, and winners are celebrated. We love being part of a community where people come together to build things, compete, win (or lose), learn, celebrate and support each other.

The event is open to youth ages 8-14. A part of the entry fees is donated to a charitable cause in the town. Local businesses like Carstar Okotoks stepped in with matching donations. According to Mark Kharfan, the organizer, soap box car kits are available for purchase to keep the baseline fair between competitor. 

The package typically consists of the standard soap box derby cart and all the instructions that come with it. There are wheels, the mechanisms, the steering, and a four by four sheet of plywood. Cars are made with a lot of creativity and ingenuity to get them faster down the hill. The trick is in aerodynamics, weight reduction, and lubrication. For others, it is all about the style of arriving at the finishing line. Usually, there are between 85 to 120 participants. This year didn't disappoint.

Observations


We were lucky with the amazing weather for the event. No one was seriously injured, and everyone seemed to be having a lot of fun. The organization and orchestration of the races ran like a well-oiled machine.

Okotoks is an amazing community. We are glad we could share the day with them. We are pleased that old-school values are still part of their world, and ours.

Hendrik van Wyk
Fast Cowboy

We earn our livelihood from producing great content about inspiring people, businesses, and communities. We use Patreon to help us earn from our work. Please become a patron at http://www.travelingcowboys.com if you want to see more of this and other stories.

Photos


Style

Perspective

Celebration

Innovation

The Team

The Replay

Friday, June 2, 2017

Traveling Cowboys: Reconnecting With Old Friends and New Family at the Waterton Food Festival 2017, Alberta, Canada

Reconnecting


Alberta has its own Brigadoon. You will find it at Waterton Lakes National Park on the southern border of the Province. It is called Waterton Village. Like its counterpart in the Brigadoon story, the Village wakes up every 8 months, instead of every 100 years, to be the setting for a microcosm of activity. When the snow arrives in October it is shuttered again, only to reappear in late Spring the next year.

In this little community, a unique group of people, from all over the world undertakes an annual pilgrimage to spend four sunny (and often windy) months together. A place where they come to celebrate their short Canadian summer. In Waterton, teenagers start their first jobs, children take over family businesses, and the ones that retire, come to say goodbye. It is a very special place because of its natural beauty. It is magical, because of its people.

This is the first of a three-part installment about Waterton in 2017, courtesy of the Waterton Park Chamber of Commerce, Chinook Country Tourism and Travel Alberta.  The Two Cowboys feature the season's opening with the Waterton Food Festival.



Please become a patron of ours: Click Here


Eating Pie


Our schedule was set with the Friday night kick-off of the festival at the Thirsty Bear Socialhouse. It is a newly renovated part of the Bayshore Inn on the waterfront. Shameer, the owner, explained that it took them a whole year to decide what should make it onto the upmarket pub-style menu. The food was delicious, and the Truffle Mac & Cheese was divine! Everything in the establishment is brand spanking new, except for the reclaimed wood of the bar and the solid timber beams that still exhibits the cattle branding marks of the old Saloon.

The kick-off delivered tasty samples from the festival's participating food businesses. Business such as the Taco Bar, Wieners of Waterton, Zum's Eatery and others were well represented. The local brewery, Coulee Brewing Company from Lethbridge, was also on hand to deliver tiny tasting servings of their popular beers. The food was just enough to entice us to visit the restaurants individually during the festival week that followed.

It took a good solid morning of recovery from the night before, to be ready for the Pie Cruise with the Waterton Shoreline Cruise Company. Participating businesses contribute two unique pies each to the excursion and try to out-do each other with pie creativity. The pies were served to patrons on the scenic boat ride that took us to the border with Montana (and back, of course). The favorite was the Chocolate Moose Pie from the newly opened Larkspur Coffee House. We were told that it took two full days to layer the amazing creation. Pie is apparently a Waterton thing!

The rest of the festival included a chef's dinner and special set menus at the various food establishments.

Observations


We can continue to list the festival's experiences, but it won't do it justice. Instead, watch our video about the event. It is the second time we covered the festival. It is growing into an annual feature for Waterton and for the Two Cowboys. You had to be there to appreciate what was on offer.

Waterton Village is not the gourmet capital of the Rockies, and it doesn't try to be. It is rather a unique group of people with a lot of creativity and a passion for food and their village. They bring something fresh and new each year to serve to visitors. All businesses are family owned and operated. Many are run by second and third generations.

As a tourist, you can drive through Waterton in a few minutes and miss most of what it has to offer. If you decide to stay for a short while, the local folks will go out of their way to get to know you. It can get very busy at times so prepare for standing in line.

Be warned. Waterton Village and its people have a welcoming way to pull you in and make you part of their world. Soon you will be one of them and also make the annual pilgrimage to Waterton's Food Festival. Before long, you may become part of the family in Alberta's own Brigadoon.

Hendrik van Wyk
Waterton Pie Cowboy

We earn our livelihood from producing great content about inspiring people, businesses, and communities. We use Patreon to help us earn from our work. Please become a patron at http://www.travelingcowboys.com if you want to see more of this and other stories.


Where to Eat



Wieners on Waterton

Waffleton

The Taco Bar

The Moose Lick Ice Cream and Shaved Ice

Big Scoop Ice Cream Parlor

Trappers Mountain Grill


49th Degree North Pizza

Photos


Prost!

Sunrise

Ice Cream Happiness

Pie People

Gourmet

Sugar

Waffleton!

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Traveling Cowboys: The Best View for Spot Prawns in the Bow Valley at Juniper Bistro, Banff, Alberta

Spot Me a Prawn


Chef Angus An of Vancouver’s Maenam Restaurant is a good friend of Chef Chris Irving. Chris is a good friend of ours, so we managed an invitation to see what Angus can do with a very precious Canadian delicacy - Spot Prawns.

It is part of the "Chef's Series" hosted at the Juniper Bistro in Banff, where Chris invites his best friends from around the world to cook for the sophisticated palates of the Bow Valley.

Yeh! Spicy street food! This was what we thought when we heard Thai and Prawns. What we discovered were the familiar flavor explosions you'd expect from Thai. Yet, it was done with a sophisticated bistro twist. If fermented rice sorbet gets your attention, then join us for the highlights of the evening as it unfolded.


Please become a patron of ours: Click Here


Three things came together, and a fourth was missing.

Let's start with the star of the attraction. The venue, Juniper Bistro is arguably the restaurant with one of the best views in Banff. Chris confessed that his famous chef friends are all too eager to make the trip up the valley. When they hear Banff and Juniper Bistro, they don't need a second invitation. The setting makes it a sought after opportunity to cook in a place that is on the bucket list of many travelers. The view of the evening of the 23rd of May didn't disappoint. It was Spring. The valley was green. The waters were turquoise and the sky, a powdery blue. The setting was perfect for a pinnacle food event.

Secondly, two very talented chefs collaborated in a special menu to celebrate the start of the highly-anticipated Spot Prawn season. Angus and his restaurant Maenam is the reigning champion of “Restaurant of The Year” in the Vancouver Magazine‘s Restaurant Awards. He has held a Gold rating for Best Thai since 2009. Maenam is considered #32 in Canada’s 100 Best. The second member of the team, Chris Irving, is used to rub shoulders with celebrities. He cooked for David Beckham and his family three days a week. The other two days for Gordon Ramsay. Now we are fortunate that he cooks for us, the Two Cowboys, in the Bow Valley.

Number three, the Spot Prawns, were flown in alive and fresh for the day of the dinner directly from the icy waters of the Pacific Ocean. Wild BC Spot Prawns are a delicacy known around the world for their sweet, delicate flavor and firm texture. They are most recognizable for their reddish brown color which turns bright pink when cooked.

Observations


We had the view, the talent, and the ingredient. What could be missing? This is where we may ruin our newly formed friendships.

We loved the evening. Everything was perfect. The service was outstanding! The prawns were poached, grilled, crackered, oiled and downed to perfection. However, we missed the familiar spiciness and heat of Thai. In our opinion, the chefs were not at fault. We know it is hard to balance delicate flavors and make a very fragile ingredient the hero of an extensive and creative menu. Rather, it is something else that is all too familiar when authentic oriental foods are involved. In our opinion, something is wrong with the Canadian palate.

It reminded me of a chefs' revolt we witnessed a couple of years ago when an authentic Indian restaurant opened in Okotoks. The chefs were principally imported from India to provide a truly authentic curry experience. After two months of Vindaloo complaints, they refused to cook one more curry and packed their bags promptly back to Bangalore. The chefs refused to adjust the authentic recipes and departed for a market where their cooking is appreciated.  The verdict? Canadians cannot stand the heat.

If there was one thing missing from the evening, it was the heat. I have a suspicion that if we met Chris and Angus in a more private setting, it would be there. Until then, we will have to settle for "Canadian Thai" - if there ever was such a thing.

Hendrik van Wyk
Hot Cowboy

We earn our livelihood from producing great content about inspiring people and their stories. We use Patreon to help us earn from our work. Please support us and get VIP privileges like early access to content and special offers. Alternatively, please sponsor us: http://www.travelingcowboys.com or Donate to our cause on GoFundMe: http://www.forwardthefavour.com. It helps us to promote our local people, businesses, and events and to keep entertaining you.

Photos


Final Touches 
Prawn Team



The Hero

Complexity

Appreciation

Friday, May 26, 2017

Traveling Cowboys: Smithbilt Hats Enhancing Personalities Since 1919 in Calgary, Alberta

Oldish New Beginnings


Smithbilt Hats recently moved to a new location just down the street from their previously located spot. It is a 120 year old reclaimed and repurposed feed store building from a grain elevator that burned down in the sixties.

The former was incorporated into the new with the rebirth of the building thanks to some architectural ingenuity, perseverance from the builders and an appreciation and time-honored commitment to the classical roots of the business.


See More on Patreon: Click Here

"For as little as $1/month you will get the inside track on content like this and follow the travels of the Two Cowboys & A Camera. Join here."

The new building is breathing fresh air into the century-old hat manufacturing business we’ve come to love and admire. It provides additional space for new additions such as a woman’s millinery line and a multi-function room for small events. 

You can still pick your hat and have it shaped or serviced right there by Brian and his team. Because of the addition of a female touch, you can now also get your personality enhanced by accessories that Holly Allen and her team append to your hat. It adds to the unique experience and definitely improves your appearance.

Smithbilt has a strong commitment and connection with the Calgary Stampede. This year, it will be part of the maker’s hall. For the 150th Canada birthday celebration the Stampede is including this new initiative to help showcase the various maker arts and crafts associated with the Western heritage and culture of the show. It will include famous and new artists in buckle making, saddle making, apparel and more. Smithbilt will showcase hat making and demonstrate its unique hat shaping skills right on the floor of the exhibition. You will be able to walk away with your own hand-shaped Calgary-made Western hat.

Observations


Holly made a vital point during our most recent visit to Smithbilt. According to her, in the same way, an accessory completes an outfit, a hat gives a person personality. We were wondering if it is such a powerful contributor to a person’s identity, then surely people should take hat wearing a lot more serious. What you wear on your head and how you wear it tells a big story about you, your history, identity and outlook on life.

We made the discovery that Smithbilt has been giving personality to countless people since 1919. If they can’t help you, then probably, no one can. In our case, we have personality. Our Smithbilt hats are therefore merely enhancing it. That is why we wear ours proudly and with attitude.

Hendrik van Wyk
Enhanced Cowboy

We earn our livelihood from producing great content about inspiring people and their stories. We use Patreon to help us earn from our work. Please support us and get VIP privileges like early access to content and special offers. Alternatively, please sponsor us: http://www.travelingcowboys.com or Donate to our cause on GoFundMe: http://www.forwardthefavour.com. It helps us to promote our local people, businesses, and events and to keep entertaining you.

Photos


Old Stuff With Stories

A Lifetime of Stories

New Stories

Initializing

Personality Enhancement

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Traveling Cowboys: 2017 Feast and Frolicking and SmokinQ some BBQ at Lynnwood Ranch, Okotoks, Alberta

BBQ Feast


It's not BBQ. It is chef inspired gourmet cooking with locally sourced Alberta produce. Alberta Pork, Beef, Chicken, Alberta smoke and truly amazing Alberta BBQ talent.

Gus Leduc and his team at Lynnwood Ranch hosted the annual KCBS' Alberta Chapter, BBQ on the Bow, for the seasonal kick-off of Alberta's 2017 low and slow BBQ competitions. If this sounds like a mouthful, let me explain.

The Kansas City Barbecue Society (KCBS) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting and enjoying barbecue. It is the world's largest organization of barbecue and grilling enthusiasts with over 20,000 members worldwide. KCBS sanctions over 500 barbecue contests worldwide. The annual event at Lynnwood Ranch is one of three in Alberta where a team can earn a ticket to the annual World Championships in the U.S.A.

Here is the first of two videos to showcase the events of the May 12 weekend.

Feast and Frolick and SmokinQ


Video 1 of 2: Feast and Frolic

Video 2 of 2: SmokinQ

See More on Patreon: Click Here and Here

"For as little as $1/month you will get the inside track on content like this and follow the travels of the Two Cowboys & A Camera. Join here."

The Feast and Frolic precede the SmokinQ competition to give the BBQ teams a fantastic feast, a dance and a chance to be judged on the preparation of inspirational food items outside the KCBS criteria. Almost 300 people attended the event to sample from a series of starter dishes prepared by the teams. It was accompanied this year by Gus' own outstanding smoked brisket and "Alberta" salmon.

Competition day is known as SmokinQ. This year 35 teams competed with a fair number of newcomers to the "sport" of BBQ. I questioned Steve Alvarez (the KCBS representative in attendance) on why it is referred to as a "sport"? He clarified, "There is a lot of physical activity that goes into preparing good Southern Style BBQ. It can take up to 18 hours to have the food prepared perfectly and on time for judging". We here mistakenly thought that to eat BBQ was the sport!

Observations


The hospitality at Lynnwood Ranch was as usual, outstanding. There was nothing too much for Gus and Wendy when we wheeled in our Motorhome on Saturday afternoon ahead of the Feast and Frolic. They are the perfect hosts.

If there is one thing that stands out in the BBQ community other than the great food, it is the community and the friendships amongst the people involved. People from different locations, as far as Manitoba come to the event. They are from diverse backgrounds, varying levels of cooking skills and experience. All of them come together for a fabulous weekend around their love for a particular type of food. If you were ever looking for a real festival of food, then this is the single best place to experience it all first-hand.

We are glad we can be part of it all and tell the stories of the people involved.

Hendrik van Wyk
Brisket Cowboy

We earn our livelihood from producing great content about inspiring people and their stories. We use Patreon to help us earn from our work. Please support us and get VIP privileges like early access to content and special offers. Alternatively, please sponsor us: http://www.travelingcowboys.com or Donate to our cause on GoFundMe: http://www.forwardthefavour.com. It helps us to promote our local people, businesses, and events and to keep entertaining you.

Photos


We have a thousand photos. See all the event photos here.

Competition Time

Arrival

It is Called a Braai

Monday, May 15, 2017

Two Cowboys: The Beans, Roast, The Grind and the Coffee Machine with Espressotec and Rocket in Vancouver, Canada

In Order of Importance


"The espresso machine is probably the least important in the value chain of good coffee. Much more important is the quality of the bean, the roast, the grind and the skill of the barista", according to Reg James, the founder of Espressotec.

Yet, the market for coffee machines is growing in sophistication. Terms such as pressure-profiling and temperature-profiling are becoming conversation points around the local single origin espresso bar. With single origin coffee, a lot more work goes into getting the best flavors from the bean. A lot more engineering and technique goes into the machines that extract these flavors.

In this post, the Traveling Cowboys caught up with Reg James, the founder of Vancouver's biggest and most trusted coffee machine and accessory suppliers. We also had the privilege of meeting Andrew Meo, from Rocket Espresso Milano. In the coffee world, these are some of Our people.



See More on Patreon: Click Here

"For as little as $1/month you will get the inside track on content like this and follow the travels of the Two Cowboys & A Camera. Join here."
When we heard Andrew will make a stopover at Reg's place on his way to the Seattle Global Coffee Expo 2017, we couldn't contain our excitement. The motorhome is always on ready-alert for an opportunity like this. We immediately hit the road to Vancouver.

On this trip, not only did we get to visit an old friend and trusted Rancilio supplier of ours, but we also managed to meet and interview a fellow coffee countryman from New Zealand. Andrew Meo is heading one of the fastest growing and best trending brands in Coffee Machines. At Rocket Espresso Milano they make the best espresso machines they possibly can.

In a very crowded and well-established global market, Andrew and his team are breaking into the commercial sector with the same solid foundational values that launched the venture not long ago. A small team of craftsmen in Milano, Italy produce both premium domestic and commercial espresso machines that are beautifully made with meticulous care and attention to detail. Machines that should last twenty-five to thirty years.

Both of these veterans have a passion for the coffee business. They also have a passion for the quality that sets a company apart and makes products and brands legendary. Not a moment goes by without them offering valuable advice and opinion on how best to coax even more flavor and value from our love affair with the little coffee bean.

Observations


We learned a lot on this trip.

Espressotec is a one-stop-shop for the coffee gadget enthusiast. We can spend days there. There are not many places like this, where you can get hands-on with the latest from RancilioRocket Espresso Milano, and La Marzocco. In the beautiful showroom that doubles as a coffee training lab and general customer hangout spot, you get to work with the machines and compare them side-by-side.

On the one hand, you can experience the legendary history of almost a century of engineering. On the contrary, you get hands-on with the rebellious new kid on the block that is pushing traditional boundaries in a pocket-sized rocket package. The Ferrari is set against the Tesla of the espresso world.

Espressotec hosts monthly events where barista and latte art enthusiasts can test their skills and learn new techniques from experts and from each other.

The most important take away from our visit is the confirmation, yet again, that the coffee grinder is the stepchild of the coffee business. The grinder, which is probably one of the simplest machines in the coffee value chain, has the single biggest role and impact on the quality of a cup of coffee. Without a good and a correctly set grind, no monster espresso machine stands a chance to extract a good cup. We own a Rancilio and a Rocket espresso machine, but we protect our grinders with a vicious guard. Reg has trained us well to appreciate the things that matter (in the coffee world).

Hendrik van Wyk
Rocket Cowboy

We earn our livelihood from producing great content about inspiring people and their stories. We use Patreon to help us earn from our work. Please support us and get VIP privileges like early access to content and special offers. Alternatively, please sponsor us: http://www.travelingcowboys.com or Donate to our cause on GoFundMe: http://www.forwardthefavour.com. It helps us to promote our local people, businesses, and events and to keep entertaining you.


Photos



Make Something

Baby Espressos

Fix it... 

New Kid

Trusted Friend



Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Traveling Cowboys: Meeting Our Brewers and Distillers at Calgary International Beerfest Courtesy of ABF, Alberta, Canada

Our Beer


We wanted to know where our beer comes from. That is why we attended the 2017 Calgary International Beerfest courtesy of Bill Robinson from Alberta Beer Festivals.

This is not another blog post to get wax lyrical about the explosion of craft and micro brewing in Alberta. We are not going to contemplate the ever prevailing evils of big corporations or the AGLC's manipulation of the industry. We are also going to leave the hophead potshots for another time (only this time).

In this post, the Traveling Cowboys went searching for the makers. The people who brew our beer and distil our Whisky in Alberta - Our people.


See More on Patreon: Click Here

"For as little as $1/month you will get the inside track on content like this and follow the travels of the Two Cowboys & A Camera. Join here."
A convention and festival is an ideal opportunity for a business to exhibit its wares. It is a chance to get close to prospective and loyal customers. When we get an invitation to attend a fest we cannot contain our enthusiasm to see what's new. It is even better when a beer is involved.

Who doesn't like a road trip? We love traveling to see and meet the Brewers and Distillers of our Province. As a bonus, an event like this gives us a chance to "speed date" the newer producers and "speed taste" unique new beverage creations. We get to introduce ourselves, catch up with old friends and meet the "new babies" (With "new babies" we imply original beverage creations and concoctions from inspirational experimentations. There is no place for children in a beer hall.).

Observations


We discovered at the Calgary International Beerfest that it was crowded.

Yes, we know it is a very popular and an ever-growing event with more than forty thousand attendees over two half-days. What we mean with crowded is that we proudly saw how well represented our own Alberta producers were against the imports from other Provinces. Alberta producers are starting to carry their own weight when placed alongside the big names. We are slowly and gloriously starting to crowd out the corporations.

There was another very obvious distinction between the breweries in attendance. We like to distinguish between the "dress-ups" and the "show-ups." The "dress-ups" put effort into portraying the lifestyle. The "show-ups" are living it.

The dress-up booths have the band, the brand, the packaging and the script that hits the caramel notes, chocolate, sea breeze aromas and IBUs. The customary V-Dub bus is parked in front with the smiling Beertarts pouring drinks from its side, to complete the perfect portrayal of fake friendships, market segmented tastes, brand associations, and consumer preferences.

The show-ups brought their kegs on a wheelbarrow. The taps are in a toolbox. In the back, a bag of ice in a tin bath is chilling the beer. The brewer is the business. His personality is the brand. He pours your pint from a brew he mashed last week. To become his customer is to be counted as one of his friends. No one can recall the names of his beers, and it doesn't really matter. His passion for consistent perfection is what is important. He never disappoints. Hops grow in his beard. Everything he does and that comes with him is real and authentic.

This is how we know where our beer comes from. It comes from a brewer. Our people.

What truly sets some apart from others is the passion that comes from the maker. The authenticity of the people, their community involvement and the quality of the beer.

According to Bill Robinson, "People want to know who is responsible for what they are eating and drinking." We completely agree. It is good to know who they are.

Hendrik van Wyk
Beer Cowboy

We earn our livelihood from producing great content about inspiring people and their stories. We use Patreon to help us earn from our work. Please support us and get VIP privileges like early access to content and special offers. Alternatively, please sponsor us: http://www.travelingcowboys.com or Donate to our cause on GoFundMe: http://www.forwardthefavour.com. It helps us to promote our local people, businesses, and events and to keep entertaining you.


Photos


Here for the Beer

Where is this?

The V-Dub Bus

Coolbox Brigade

Our People

Wrong Glasses

Education is Important

Just Beautiful

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Traveling Cowboys: Event Highlights for Canmore Uncorked 2017, Alberta, Canada - You Should've Been Here!

Canmore Uncorked Food Festival in the Mountains 2017


This is the second year that we collaborate with Canmore Uncorked (http://www.canmoreuncorked.com).

See the highlights of 12 days of food festivities in the Rocky Mountains of Alberta.

Because many of the business in Canmore support us as sponsors and patrons, we support them in return: http://www.travelingcowboys.com. If you want to see more about them, be a supporter of our cause or follow our travels, then please become a friend on Patreon. Subscribe to our channel on YouTube and read our Blog.

Hendrik van Wyk
Travelling Cowboy

See More on Patreon: Click Here

"For as little as $1/month you will get the inside track on content like this and follow the travels of the Two Cowboys & A Camera. Join here."

Here they are:


Highlights!

Launch Party!

Long Table Dinner

Wine Festival

Beer Festival

Whiskey and Spirit Festival


Progressive Amazing Dinner Tour Race

Traveling Cowboys: Little Mexico on the Prairie - Motoburrito Back for Another Summer in Turner Valley, Alberta

Living the Dream


Here is the ideal lifestyle. A food truck summer in Alberta, Canada. Sunshine, sand and beach-bound winters in Mexico.

If you mention this to any Canadian, they will get a strange longing in their eyes. It is the same look someone gets when thinking of missed opportunities, long gone lovers or lost romance.

See More on Patreon: Click Here

"For as little as $1/month you will get the inside track on content like this and follow the travels of the Two Cowboys & A Camera. Join here."
Motoburrito in Turner Valley, Alberta managed to make the dream real. This is their lifestyle. With their food truck, they are on the busiest breakfast-run biker junction of the Foothills. Summer weekends and lazy days see them serving delicious Burritos, Tacos and "Mexican coffees". Winters, they recover by lounging on the sandy beaches of Cancun, Mexico.

Observations


When Motoburrito opens their trailer for business, we know that Spring finally arrived. The food is fresh and delicious. We call it our little Mexico on the Prairie. Go for the "Dirty Sanchez" (don't ask where the name comes from, you don't want to know!) or the Pollo Loco. Even the chickens love it ;-)

These dishes are trusted favourites in Mexico. It is as authentic as you can expect from people that spend half their time South and can serve you in Alberta Spanglish if you wish.

Whatever you do, don't miss out on the coffee. Tell them that you want the "Two Cowboys coffee special". We guarantee that you will be pleasantly surprised. Note though, under no circumstances do we take responsibility for what follows. Refrain from driving or riding for at least a couple of hours. You will need the rest, trust us!

The one distinct characteristic of the Motoburrito experience is that it is a local experience. These are our people. They know their customers by name. Introduce yourself, and you will quickly become friends. Walking up to the truck you will be greeted with the usual Motoburrito yelp. "Tequila!" The rest is up to you...

As they say in Mexico, "What happens in Mexico, stays in Mexico". Enjoy the coffee. Keep the secret, but tell everyone about Motoburrito!

Hendrik van Wyk
Taco Cowboy

We earn our livelihood from producing great content about inspiring people and their stories. We use Patreon to help us earn from our work. Please support us and get VIP privileges like early access to content and special offers. Alternatively, please sponsor us: http://www.travelingcowboys.com or Donate to our cause on GoFundMe: http://www.forwardthefavour.com. It helps us to promote our local people, businesses and events and to keep entertaining you.


Photos


This is not Sanchez!

Little Mexico

Burrito Ladies

Tequila!


Google+ Followers