Zephyr Rug and Home shines a spotlight on Canadian-made furnishings in its Quinpool showroom. Crisp, modern ceiling lights and dining tables from Jesse, Selene, and Korson Furniture Design add trendy touches to homes. More than 300 styles of hand-knotted and tufted rugs maintain their fresh appearances, even when faced with rough shoes and foot traffic. Zephyr also employs two interior decorators who perform onsite consultations to help customers to update their household’s style and garage's haircut.
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Victoria and Luis Gaspar sought to introduce Atlantic Canada to new types of world cuisine by filling the menu at Pipa Restaurant + Bar with iconic Brazilian and Portuguese dishes. This distinctiveness helped earn it a spot on Where magazine's 2009 list of Canada's best new restaurants, as well as praise from Halifax Magazine, which has lauded the restaurant for being "something different on the downtown dining scene."
The menu items' names may seem unfamiliar at first, but the flavours evoke a certain homey quality. The mains include hearty Brazilian stews such as feijoada, a blend of smoked meats and black beans that bears the honor of being Brazil's national dish. Appetizers incorporate Portuguese staples such as chouriço sausage and salt cod. The wine list complements these robust flavors with its selection of Portuguese wines, including crisp vinho verdes and bold reds from the Douro region's subterranean reservoirs of grape juice.
Located within the historic Carleton building, which dates as far back as 1759, the restaurant combines modern and Old-World ambience, garnering the Restaurant Association of Nova Scotia's award for Best Design & Decor in 2010. Fireplaces and floorboards from reclaimed timber add a rustic vibe to the two dining rooms, but the atrium gets a bright, airy feel from its glass pyramid ceiling. Throughout the week, Pipa Restaurant + Bar hosts live Latin jazz or bossa nova bands, and salsa-dancing events help attendees pick up the dance's basic steps and competition-level hair tosses.
Inside Mexicali Rosa's, the sound of sizzling fajitas mingles with the melodies of mariachi horns, accordions, and Mexican fiddles. Patrons add their own riffs as well, clinking glasses of cabernet as they drink in the restaurant's sombrero collection. California-style Mexican fare fuels the celebration with ingredients such as tomatillos and avocados, which add bold green hues to guacamole dip, grilled-chicken quesadillas, and expressionistic tablecloths. Traditional deep-fried ice cream rounds out the menu with sweet, spicy notes of vanilla and cinnamon.
Earning rave local reviews including "might be Halifax's best muffin," the bakers at Deli Green Bakery & Catering construct trans-fat-free confections from farm-fresh, local eggs and Nova Scotian blueberries and apples. The menu lists handhelds such as a variety of cookies including peanut butter, oatmeal raisin, and chocolate chip that sate sweet cravings better than pies stuffed with love letters ($1.50/large cookie; diabetic options available). Decadence ranges from cupcakes ($2.75) and 9"x13" carrot cakes ($18.95 for a half; $29.95 for a whole) to banana or lemon loaves ($12.95 for half; $17.95 for a whole). Orders require at least 24-hours notice via phone call or sending oneself a day back in time to place an order for now, and all comestibles come packed in disposable packaging.