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Gifting Made Easy with Breakaway Experiences! Review and Giveaway! #HolidayGiftGuide CAN 12/12

| November 3, 2015 | 58 Comments

Gifts. I love giving them, but I always wonder if I have found just the right gift for that special someone. Some people are really hard to gift shop for, and it can be a challenge. There are times that the perfect gift may not be found in a wrapped package. This is why I was excited that Breakaway Experiences asked me to review an experience from their directory of businesses that provide amazing experiences anyone would enjoy!

 

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After registering with Breakaway Experience, it was really hard for me to choose from the numerous adventures Breakaway Experiences had to offer on their directory, but the service was really easy to use! Users of this site can choose from the following drop-down options to find an experience they would enjoy:
• Location
• (Type of) Experience
• Occasion (ex. Wedding, Father’s Day)
• Recipient (ex. For Him, For Couples)

I chose Location, selected my province, and from there, I browsed through all of the experiences listed to choose from. Since I have always wanted to do a cooking class, I decided to try the Hands-On Cooking Class with The Urban Element. I added it to “My Cart” and went to the Checkout to finalize payment. I was sent an email with the details of my experience, as well as instructions how to contact The Urban Element to select the cooking class of my choice.

Once I visited website for The Urban Element for the classes they offered, I thought I would enjoy trying out their Summer Harvest class. When I called to book my class, they were able to answer all of the questions I had about the class as well as any concerns I had. I was even sent an email to confirm my class and to ask about any food allergies I may have to make sure I could fully participate in the class. The Urban Element is located in a gorgeous refurbished firehouse in the Wellington West area of Ottawa. They provide various types of events such as cooking classes, corporate team building events, private events, weddings, culinary consulting and UE on campus sessions, and catering services.

 

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I sat down at one of the place settings as the class go under way. Chef Tara Rajan introduced herself as the chef that was running that evening’s class. She then went through the Summer Harvest menu and what was involved in each of the stations to prep each part of our meal. This was what was on the menu for the class:

• Grilled Pear Salad with Walnut Vinaigrette
• Mussels with Roasted Tomatoes and Chorizo with Fresh Baked Focaccia
• Chernoula-Marniated Grilled Cornish Hen topped with Swiss Chard with Apples and Pine Nuts, on a bed of Green Beans with Pancetta and a Corn Salsa
• Mixed Berry Shortcake with Limoncello Mascarpone Cream

 

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The class then separated themselves and got to work. I chose to roll up my sleeves and help to prepare the Cornish hens and swiss chard. My partner for the evening, Ophelia, and I had a fun time navigating ourselves through the menu set out at our station. I loved that each menu was only a page long, and that there was a list of equipment provided so that if you were to try and duplicate your efforts at home, you would know what you needed before you started cooking. Luckily, the cooking instructors had previously prepared each station with what we needed. One of the best parts of prepping the Cornish hens was separating them so that they were in quarters. I picked up a lot of handy tips to take along with me on future cooking adventures in my own kitchen. Chef Rajan and the cooking instructors were also on hand to give any further instruction and to answer questions we had about our part of the menu. From prep to the end of your meal, each class is three hours long, and boy, did time fly while Ophelia and I had our adventures in this gorgeous kitchen.

 

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Once we finished preparing our part of the meal, Chef Rajan and the cooking instructors then put all of the pieces of our meal together and served us 4 amazing courses! We were also given our choice of a wine (white, red or rosé) to sip on while we enjoyed each course. Though I helped prepare the Cornish hen, my favourite course was dessert. The Mixed Berry Shortcake with Limoncello Mascarpone Cream was divine! I could have had seconds (or thirds), it was THAT good!

 

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If I had one criticism about this experience, it would be that I did not get to try and make all of the courses for that particular class. I understand that the class is structured to have students make a part of the meal for time constraints, but it would have been fun to try my hand at some of the other courses.

As I left for the night, I was so happy and excited by this cooking class at The Urban Element. Chef Rajan and the cooking instructors were really helpful and helped us with whatever questions we had about our portion of the class. The atmosphere was fun and laid back even though the kitchen was crammed with people cooking, and the space was gorgeous to cook and enjoy your meal after the class. Oh, and the food everyone made was scrumptious! It was a great experience! I want to go back for another class with a different theme to try preparing a new dish.

 

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If cooking is not your thing, there are so many other experiences to be had with Breakaway experiences! Here are some adventures I will be thinking about choosing to do myself or gifting for loved ones:
Brewery Tour – Ottawa
Biplane Flight Over the Gatineau Hills for 2
Camp Explora Electric ATV Scavenger Hunt Adventure
Maple Luscious Spa Experience at Hotlz Spa
Ottawa Bicycle Tour – Full Day

Gifting an experience is a great present to give to a parent, sibling, friend, or couple, and they make fabulous Christmas, birthday, anniversary, or wedding presents!

For more information about The Urban Element, you can visit their website, Facebook and Instagram pages!

To learn more about Breakaway Experiences, you can connect with them online, as well as on their Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Google+ pages!

 

Disclaimer: My experience was paid for by Breakaway Experiences in order to write this review. My views are all my own.

 

Giveaway Time!

 

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Breakaway Experience would like for one lucky Ottawa Mommy Club reader to have an experience of their own! We are giving away a $100 Gift Card from Breakaway Experiences to put towards a fun and exciting adventure of your choice!

The ARV of this prize package is $100!

This giveaway is open to Canadian residents and ends at 11:59 EDT on  December 12th, 2015.

Good Luck!

Rules: Open to Canadian residents 18 +. You have 48 hours to reply by email once you are notified as the winner. If you don’t, we will draw another entry. Prize is non-transferable. No substitution or cash equivalent of prizes is permitted. The selected winner must correctly answer a mathematical question in order to win the prize mentioned above. The Ottawa Mommy Club is not responsible for prize fulfillment and for the delivery/shipment of the prize(s) mentioned above. For our complete set of rules, please click here.

 

Click here to view this promotion.

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Category: Birthdays, Christmas, Dads, Dining, Family, Father's Day, Food, Food, Giveaways Archived, Grand-Parents, Moms, Mother's Day, Reviews, Themes, Thursday Reviews, Website, Weekly Themes

About the Author ()

My name is Lian Wright. Born in Toronto, I came to Ottawa as a student to study Political Science at Carleton University, and came away with an Honours Degree, and decided to stay. I'm a huge sports fan, have a love of reading, and like experiencing new things whenever I can. I am now a mother of three children (11, 1 and 7 months old) and am kept constantly on my toes. My blog, Pieces of Me, is my way of sharing what I have enjoyed and encountered in my life so far as a mother. So far, being a mom has had it's expected ups and downs, but that's what makes being a parent so fulfilling for me. I've loved and learned from what's happened so far, and I can't wait to see what's in store for me next. I hope you enjoy the journey with me!

Comments (58)

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  1. joanne darrell says:

    I would choose the Ottawa dining experience.

  2. Valerie Gibson says:

    I would choose the brewery tour in Ottawa

  3. ginette4 says:

    If I won I think I would chose the bicycle wine experience in Niagara On The Lake..there’s a few..just need to decide exactly which one..lol

  4. ivy pluchinsky says:

    i would choose the Biplane Flight Over the Gatineau Hills for 2

  5. Maegan Morin says:

    I would choose the Stock Car Driving Experience, Medicine Hat Speedway.

  6. Jana L. says:

    I would choose the Chocolate Body Wrap at D Spa for some pampering

  7. Sunshine says:

    I’d do the zipline in Whistler, BC.

  8. Jennifer says:

    Romantic Horseback Ride and Picnic

  9. Angela Mitchell says:

    I’d love to go on the The Lost Souls of Gastown Walking Tour.

  10. Tracey Flattes says:

    The biplane flight sounds pretty cool!

  11. jan says:

    one of the Tasting Tours or Raceway Drives

  12. Florence C says:

    Paintball Experience with Delta Force Paintball in Edmonton

  13. Debbie P says:

    High tea spa at the upkeep shoppe looks great!!

  14. Holly O'Gorman says:

    I would pick the dining experience.

  15. Mrs White says:

    I’d love to do the Distillery District Segway Tour or the Sailing 🙂 How cool!!

  16. Darwin says:

    If I won, I would use the gift certificate towards an Superfly Zipline And Off Road RZR Package, Whistler

  17. Kelly D says:

    I would choose the Lady’s Spa Day at Novo Spa in Toronto!

  18. Rene says:

    The ottawa brewery tour looks pretty great to me!

  19. kathy downey says:

    The Offroad Scenic Hummer Adventure would be awesome fun!

  20. Jennifer P. says:

    I think I would choose the Superfly Ziplines experience at Whistler – we always talk about going to do this, the gift certificate would help make it a reality!

  21. Athena says:

    Lady’s Spa Day at Novo Spa

  22. Tina L. says:

    I would pick the Dark Table – Dinner for 2.

  23. Julie Bolduc says:

    I would put it to the Camp Explora Electric ATV Scavenger Hunt Adventure

  24. Jonnie says:

    I think I would choose the Edmonton River Valley Segway Adventure Tour

  25. SUMMER PLEWES says:

    Dance Lessons (for 1 or 2) with Arthur Murray

    Totally would pick that one.

  26. Audrey Ling says:

    I would choose the spa experience at Holtz or any spa!!

  27. hsibley says:

    I would choose the Biplane Flight Over Parliament Hill for 2

  28. Jennifer says:

    The heli ride above the gatineau’s would be beautiful this time of year.

  29. Amber Y says:

    It’s a tough choice, but I think I’d choose the Kensington Market Sweets Tour. I love the idea of a foodie tour.

  30. andrea amy says:

    There really isn’t that I would be interested in for the Calgary area at all, so if I was lucky enough to win I would give this to my Mom. She’s in Victoria and there are some great things there she would be interested in. Maybe the carriage ride for 4 or craft beer & culinary tour! Thanks for the chance.

  31. Bev says:

    I would choose the Dinner in the Dark!

  32. Christy E says:

    I would choose the Paddle Board Lessons For 2

  33. Karine says:

    I’d choose the Camp Explora Electric ATV Scavenger Hunt Adventure!

  34. cheryl hodgkins says:

    I would choose the Chocolate Body Wrap at D Spa

  35. em says:

    I’d pick Tandem Hang Gliding with High Perspective Inc. or Tandem Skydiving – 13,500 ft
    I’m also afraid of heights so this is a good way of conquering my fears… i’m already scared thinking about it

  36. Jolie says:

    I would chose the Niagara’s Twenty Valley Wine and Cheese Tour.

  37. KellyPC says:

    The when pigs fry walking tour! lol

  38. Allie f says:

    I would like to do the lady’s spa day at Novo Spa in Toronto!

  39. Jenn says:

    Definitely the Introductory Flight Experience – Sea to Sky Air!

  40. leana says:

    I would do the zipline in Whistler, BC.

  41. maria says:

    I would choose the Whistler dinner tour.

  42. Julie-Lynne McCann says:

    Brewery Tour – Ottawa my husband would like this!

  43. Jessica P says:

    I would choose High Tea Spa Party – The Upkeep Shoppe

  44. I would probably choose the Niagara-on-the-Lake Wine and Culinary Adventure

  45. heather wesley says:

    time for me at D spa

  46. heather wesley says:

    wasaga beach paintball

  47. Manuel Vizcaya says:

    Distillery District Segway Haunted Tour sounds like fun.

  48. Edmond says:

    Good Golly Miss Molly. I would choose ice downhill bobsled ride whistler. . Wow, prize $100 gc is fab. & splendid. 2 fingers snap. It is tight, fly & off the chain. Thank you for the awesomeness, the contest, and generosity. 🙂

  49. Love the variety in offerings. I’d get dinner for 2 at the Fish Market (breakawayexperiences.com/en/the-fish-market-restaurant-dinner-for-2-with-wine).

    Besos, Sarah
    Journeys of The Zoo

  50. Sam says:

    Brewery Tour sounds fun!

  51. Valerie Mallette says:

    I would choose the Coasters Seafood Grill – Dinner for 2 with Wine experience.

  52. Heidi M says:

    I would do the Hands-on Cooking Class with The Urban Element

  53. KellyPC says:

    The kayak lessons would be a lot of fun!

  54. Tracy D says:

    There is only one available in Atlantic provinces, Scotia Speedworld.

  55. angela eagle says:

    Definitely stunt driving

  56. 409cope says:

    I would love white water rafting.

  57. Rae D. says:

    The Biplane Flight Over the Gatineau Hills for 2.

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