Fred UnLEEshed: Nov. 10, 2015

BOND BRANDS: The much-anticipated opening of Spectre, the 24th James Bond movie in the storied franchise, was cause for celebration on many fronts in the city. Bollinger Champagne and Omega Seamasters have held starring roles in the films for the past 40 and 20 years respectively. The two luxury labels held red carpet romps in tribute to 007. Bollinger and Bond is one of the most enduring couplings in motion picture history. Trialto, representatives of the storied Champagne house in B.C., hosted a party at Sutton Place Hotel’s Gerard Lounge before an exclusive screening. Since 1995’s Golden Eye, James Bond has also worn an Omega Seamasters in every film. The watchmaker hosted its own sparkling hoopla at its flagship store, introducing the limited edition Seamaster 300 worn by the secret spy in this latest Bond film, before a private viewing at Scotiabank Theatre.

CULTURE CLUB: Since 1976, MOSAIC has been offering settlement, employment, English classes, translation and interpretation services to immigrants, refugees and newcomers to Canada. A capacity crowd attended the Roundhouse Community Centre for Festival MOSAIC, its marquee fundraiser. They enjoyed a delicious sampling of international cuisines, while experiencing a multitude of art, dance and music from around the globe. Fronted by executive director Eyob Naizghi, chief fundraiser Ninu Kang and emceed by yours truly, the gala, sponsored by B.C. Salmon Farmers Association, raised more than $70,000 to support the venerable not-for-profit multilingual organization, which assists some 25,000 individuals annually.

YOUNG CHEFS IMPRESS: The tables were turned as culinary apprentices from Fairmont’s seven Pacific Northwest hotel properties took to the kitchen on their own to prepare an impressive six-course dinner for 325 guests and their culinary mentors, Fairmont’s executive chefs. Fairmont’s Culinary Apprentice Dinner is a much-anticipated annual affair. This year’s royal repast took place at the historic Fairmont Hotel Vancouver with CTV’s Coleen Christie as master of ceremonies. The brainchild of former executive chef Robert Le Crom, the Fairmont Apprenticeship Program — a 36-month curriculum created to prepare individuals for a career as a chef — has seen more than 200 graduates. The competitive-but-always cordial dinner is a highlight of the school year. This year’s top course — as voted by guests — went to the apprentices at Hotel Vancouver.

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