Williams-Sonoma Marketplace, Tea Zone and Café Koraku, Primm

About a 40 minute drive south on the I-15 from the strip, over on Exit 1, is the Fashion Outlets of Las Vegas. This place is a shopping mecca of discounted clothes, purses and shoes. It’s large, air-conditioned and relatively crowd-free (unlike another good, but very crowded and outdoor Las Vegas outlet mall that I went to).

And bonus, it has a Williams-Sonoma outlet. Just look at this pretty, pretty photo!

Williams-Sonoma Marketplace - Le Creuset sale

Williams-Sonoma Marketplace - Le Creuset sale

Too bad I made a promise not to try to fit one of those in my luggage. They had quite a few deals in there, and in particular I was looking for a set of round cookie cutters with scalloped edges that I had seen in their Calgary store, but unfortunately they were sold out already.

And then I saw this.

Williams-Sonoma Marketplace - vanilla

Williams-Sonoma Marketplace - vanilla

At half price, each box contained 3 different 2 fl oz bottles of vanilla extract, and the following description:

Like fine wine, premium vanilla springs from a combination of soil, climate and expert processing – an art practiced by Nielsen-Massey since 1907. Our special set combines three of the world’s finest single-origin vanillas: intense Madagascar Bourbon vanilla, a favorite for ice cream and chocolate; floral Tahitian vanilla, which brings out the best in fruit-based desserts; and earthy, sensual Mexican vanilla, the original vanilla sent home to Spain by the explorer Cortez and a perfect complement to cinnamon and spicy, savory dishes like chili.

Even better – the bottles were small enough to fall under the liquid amounts that you could carry on the plane, so they travelled in my purse with my lip balm. I have no idea what I’m going to do with them just yet, so please let me know if you have ideas. Continue reading

North end Edmonton construction

There’s quite a bit of food-related construction happening in the north end of town. The biggest news is probably the T & T Supermarket that is being built in North Town Centre (97 St and 137 Ave). They recently put up a banner looking for employees, but when I took the photo they had taken it down for some reason. Gossip is rampant among the different Asian communities in this end of town; I first heard about this expansion probably about 1 1/2 to 2 years ago. Last summer a friend told me confidentially that there was going to be an expansion and I had to admit that I knew about it already. And apparently there’s going to be bubble tea too!

T & T construction

T & T construction

That whole shopping mall is going through a well deserved renovation, which meant the demolition of the inside of the mall itself and the conversion of the place into a strip mall power centre. The additions include a Starbucks, a Mucho Burrito, and as of yet unopened locations of an Indigo Books and a Bed, Bath and Beyond (which I think, based on their website, is the first Canadian location outside of Ontario).

Oxford strip mall

Oxford strip mall

In Castledowns, the new Save-On-Foods grocery store in Oxford (corner of 127 St and 153 Ave) has been relatively busy. I can foresee that strip mall getting even busier as they finish construction there. The new Subway and Starbucks has been open for a little while now. I didn’t even know that the Original Joe’s restaurant was already open until I took the photo on May 5th. There will also be branches of Taco Del Mar, and more excitedly (at least for me) are the Marble Slab Creamery signs that I saw in one of the stores.

Oxford construction

Oxford construction

Bubble tea, ice cream and nachos, oh my! I can feel the calories adding up already.