Raw Canvas (Dine Out 2013)

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I’ve always wanted to try Raw Canvas but looking at the menu, it can be pretty pricey. It’s basically a place where you can eat some meat and cheese, have some drinks, and then you have the choice to go paint! Pretty neat idea, and an awesome place to go for a girls night out. Luckily, Raw Canvas participated in Dine Out Vancouver 2013, so I got to try it out for only $38!

$38 gets you your “appetizer”, which is a choice of cheese sampler or meat sampler. Then your “entree” is a canvas to paint on, with all paint supplied and included. Lastly, your “dessert” is gelato and port! A pretty good deal, since the smallest canvas itself is normally $55. The one for dine out is a bit smaller though, but still a deal regardless since you get food as well.

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They have a really nice bar, and at around 9p.m, the place was filled with people having drinks. It definitely feels like a nice place to chat with friends over some drinks.

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The place is basically separated so one side is where you eat, and the other half of the place is where the art happens! At first we thought that there weren’t that many easels, but they actually have a lot! It gets a little tight, so if you want lots of space, then I would suggest going earlier or on a weekday night.

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I love how the wooden tables and brick walls give the place such an artsy feel to it! Along with the gorgeous paintings on the wall, you can’t help but feel inspired to paint!

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The place actually has a decent amount of seats too. Seats for smaller and larger groups as well. The dim lighting totally works in this setting.

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Blue - Sake, alize bleu, ginger ale, ginger

K got a mixed cocktail called Blue. Pretty nice!

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Karmellet Tripel (Belgium) - abbeys

E got the Karmellet Tripel, which he said wasn’t too bitter. It was recommended by the guy, who we think may be the owner. He was extremely nice and professional. Awesome service!

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Peach Italissima Nectar

For myself, I was not feeling like alcohol, so I chose the Peach Italissima Nectar. I really had no idea what it was, but it came in a tiny little bottle.

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Then you pour it into a glass with ice, and it is actually pretty good! It’s a little thick, but the ice helps to liquify it. Not bad, and it actually was decent with the meat.

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Water comes in a Raw Canvas glass bottle, which they reuse. It’s pretty neat though. You want to check your glasses beforehand though, because some of them have paint on them since people can take their drinks with them when they go paint. The servers were observant enough to let us know and quickly change them though.

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Freshly Baked French Baguette

At first, we thought that we would not get full at all, since we’re really just eating meat… but we were wrong! For the 3 of us, they served us two large bowls of Baked French Baguettes. And we were totally full after ourĀ  meal! I guess the bread really fills you up.

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Charcuterie Tasting Plate, served with freshly baked french baguette: Provence Saucisson Sec - southern French sausage flavoured with pastis, Pheasant and Pistachio TerrineĀ - made in Quebec by maison du gibler, Czech Beer Salami - classic Czech style salami flavoured with beer

Accompaniments:Stoneground Mustard, Fire Roasted Tomatoes, Cornichons

All 3 of us got the Charcuterie Tasting Plate, which is basically a plate with 3 types of meat and 3 accompaniments. On the far left, there was the Provence Saucisson Sec. This was basically a sausage, and was my favourite. It was soft and tasted great with the stoneground mustard. In the middle, was the Pheasant and Pistachio Terrine. This was probably my least favourite. It might’ve been the pistachio flavour that threw it off for me. Lastly, on the right was the Czech Beer Salami. Although it was lightly sliced, it was very chewy and hard. It was also extremely strong in pork, but salami is made of pork! They gave a fair amount of the salami, and it was easy to place on the bread.

For the accompaniments, it came with the Stoneground Mustard, which was my favourite! It’s basically mustard seeds that are grounded and made into a paste. It’s definitely strong in mustard flavour, and I could just spread it on the bread and I would be completely happy. So delicious! In the middle, we had the Fire Roasted Tomatoes, which were also really delicious. This can just be put on the bread and there was tons of flavour. And lastly, on the right, were the Cornichons, which are basically pickled cucumbers and are popular in Europe. I’m not a big fan of pickles, but these ones were surprisingly not too sour. I didn’t finish all of them, but they were nice to have in between all the meat.

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Gelato and Port - Vanilla Bean Gelato with Sweet Portuguese Wine

For dessert, the item was Gelato and Port. It was a huge scoop of Vanilla Bean Gelato, and you could see the black specks so you knew it wasn’t just vanilla extract. It was served with a glass of sweet Portuguese wine, which when you smell it, smells quite strong in alcohol. I thought it was brandy or whiskey at first, but the server explained that it was a sweet wine. I poured around half the flask in, and it was already plenty to have a taste of alcohol in it. Definitely brings out the sweetness and was a great pairing to the gelato.image

After you finish dessert, they ask you if you’re ready to go paint! They don’t push you to, and you can take your time to talk some more if you want to. But of course we were ready to go paint! They provide you with a smock so you can totally get into your artsy spirit. They also have a long wall of paints, and you just squeeze them out onto you palette board. I wish I got a picture of that, because it looks really neat! Then, you go ahead and get all artsy! They also have an artist there to look after you in case you have questions, or need some help getting inspired. And honestly, you don’t need to be an amazing artist to paint. Everyone was just having fun and bringing out their creativity!

So overall, Raw Canvas is an awesome place whether you know how to paint or not. It’s definitely a place to go once in your lifetime, whether it be on a date, to celebrate or to find a place to have food, drinks, and art! It may get quite expensive if you go on their regular nights, but it is something that everyone should try. Instead of having a typical movie night, why not go painting?

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