Brunch is a favourite past time shared by many and should be an extraordinary experience, one that you will cherish. Vancouver has some wonderful places for brunch. Each of the places I visit is unique for what is offered along with the type of service and selection of dishes. I am on a journey around the city to find these extraordinary places and, at the same time, I will be joined by a notable personality who may be a Film Producer or Director, Musician, Arts Festival Director, Actor or other well-known individual for Brunch at restaurants in and around Vancouver.
For my forty first brunch in this series, I was joined by CTV Morning Live Co-Host Aamer Haleem at The Bibo in Kitsilano talking Television, Music, Eating and more.
Aamer Haleem was born in London and raised in Ottawa and Toronto where he attended the University of Toronto and the School of Journalism at Humber College. His first job was as an associate producer at TSN Inside Sports. He also hosted a music video program at Hong Kong’s Channel V in 1996, but returned to Canada the following year after the transfer of the sovereignty of Hong Kong to host VTV Breakfast on Vancouver television station CIVT-TV (then known as “VTV”).
He was a host of programming on VH1 in the United States, including Bands Reunited and VSpot Top 20 Countdown. He has hosted the weekday afternoon current affairs program The Point on CBC Radio One, until it was canceled on June 26, 2009. He has been a co-host of the Vancouver edition of CTV Morning Live since 2011.
You can follow Aamer on Twitter @AamerHaleem
Have you always wanted to be a TV Host?
Yes it was a split between being in television or a lawyer. Originally planned to be a sportscaster as I started with TSN. Started as an intern through school (Journalism at school through U of T).
What type of music did you listen to growing up?
Everything but learning towards Led Zeppelin and the Beatles as a kid “John Lenon’s” give peace a chance. Then (grew up in Ottawa) U2, Human League, then moved to Toronto and listened to the Depeche Mode, Smiths and New Order. Indie and alternative music.
Tell me who some of your most notable guests that you have interviewed on your shows over the years?
- U2 – multiple times, 1st time in LA
- Paul McCartney
- George Clooney
- Paul Rudd
- Richard Branson
- Emma Thompson
- Emily Blunt
- Jada Pinetti Smith
- Chris Cidad
What are some of your craziest experiences you have had on your tv shows?
1) On CTV Morning Live – Richard Branson cut my tie on the show
2) Flight attendants from Virgin Atlantic came on the show – sent a t-shirt with a tie cut in half printed on the shirt – signed by Branson.
3) Flying with U2 – I had a U2 notepad with me and the guitarist drew a photo of a sunflower and I was in a photo with him, that now is framed at home on my wall.
4) Bands Reunited – that show was crazy –traveling and would have to surprise musicians from known bands that we wanted to reunite.
If you could guess how many tv shows you have hosted over the years, how many would that be?
Thousands –can’t even imagine. Just celebrated our 350th show at CTV Morning Live.
Do you come from an entertainment family?
No, but my brother is a reporter for CBC in Winnipeg.
How did you get into doing Voice Overs?
A natural off shoot from what I do everyday. It’s easy enough to do now.
Who are some of your favourite people that you have co-hosted shows with in the past?
- Rachel Perry at Much Music –co-hosted the Top 20 Countdown
- VTV Breakfast – Tamara Taggart, Coleen Christie, and Nicola Crosby
You have interviewed Woody Allen, Madonna and Queen Latifah to name a few, was their anything striking for you when interviewing these unique personalities as opposed to all the other interviews you have done?
No – I approach my interviews exactly the same way I research everyone I am about to interview and recognize the time and effort it takes to do it. I’m prepared for anyone I am interviewing.
Where was your most recent trip?
My wife and I went to London, Paris and Germany. Ate at a great Italian restaurant in Paris.
What is your favourite foods?
- Aburi Sushi
- Pizza –authentic Italian
- Stack of pancakes
What are your favourite restaurants in Vancouver?
- Bistro Sakana
- Banana Leaf
- The Bibo
- Terra Breads
- Sala Thai
Custom Baked Sandwich
Melanzane Alla Parmigiana
Formula One Pizza
Aamer had a custom baked Sandwich with buratta, chicken, fennel and eggplant with tomato sauce, Richard had the Melanzane Alla Parmigiana and then Aamer and Richard shared the Formula One Pizza.
What are some of your favourite restaurants outside of Vancouver?
- Café Mogador in New York
- Humus Factory in LA
- Gratzie in Toronto
- Shinto Sushi in LA
- Claridges for High Tea in London
- Levant in London –middle eastern
What do you do in your off time?
- Hangout with friends
- Going to the movies
Who inspires you?
My wife for sure, upbeat, positive outlook, my parents moved to Canada for a life –for the benefit of all of their kids.
What has inspired you lately?
Malala Yousafzai –a 15 year old girl – who was shot in the head and neck in an assassination attempt by Taliban gunmen while returning home on a school bus. She is a Nobel Peace Prize nominee; youngest in history. She started a foundation to give girls the opportunity to be educated. On 1 January 2013, she received the “2012 Tipperary International Peace Award” for her courage and determination to speak out in support of equal access to education for every child.
Is there anything you want to do, that you haven’t done already?
- Host an Interview based show
- Continue traveling, to visit Australia and Africa
What’s next for you or what’s on the horizon?
I want to increase our footprint with CTV Morning Live
Time-shifting – people watching our show across the country
Style: A La Carte
Attire: Business Casual
Time: Saturday & Sunday 11:30am – 2:30pm
1835 West 4th Avenue, Vancouver
Stay tuned to my next guest Interview along with the next Brunch in and around Vancouver.
By: Richard Wolak