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Canoe | Victoria


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#1 mat

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Posted 20 October 2007 - 07:38 PM

Every Friday an eclectic group of old and young farts (late 30's to 80's) congregate at Canoe for a confarb, really good beer, and sometimes food. The group has been doing this for many years, I am a recent 'member' of 2 years standing. While the main reason is to meet - the location is for the service and the brew.

Fridays are big business for lunch at any downtown location, but our double table, in the center of the bar (or outside in the summer) is always prepared. The servers know our drinks, our need for peanuts and coasters, and take the time to tell us of their week, and share some of our stories. One of our group is in his 80's and has a beer, soup right at noon, then a coffee - no need to ask, they effortlessly watch over all of us.

The beer - Sean, the brewmaster makes, what I feel, is the best bitter outside of Yorkshire, and the pale ale is heaven. The seasonal brews can be hit or miss, sometimes too sweet or hoppy, but this is a man with a calling. His raison d'etre is beer, and he does it well.

Where Canoe fails is the food - it is a difficult job to run both a bar and bistro. Pub clients want good prices for chicken wings and burgers, while the restaurant side needs innovative menus, creative plates and quality. A burger with fries will set you back over $11.50 - a pot pie over $15. Get into the seafood and steaks, a plate will be over $22. Not bar prices.

While staff come and go fairly rapidly at many places, Canoe has managed to retain many of it's best, and it shows with the clients. All the staff are very good - and I say this as a former restaurant and bar manager.

Go for the beer, the welcome and the view of a working Victoria Inner Harbour. Comments welcome

#2 Ms. B. Havin

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Posted 20 October 2007 - 09:10 PM

^ Agree about the food. It's the same for many Victoria restaurants.
When you buy a game, you buy the rules. Play happens in the space between the rules.

#3 Rob Randall

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Posted 25 March 2008 - 10:20 PM

An existing liquor primary license previously belonging to the old Soundgarden nightclub on Store St. is being proposed for the Canoe Brew Pub on Swift Street. The proposal to transfer this license will be heard by Council at City Hall Thursday, March 27, 2008 at 7:30 p.m. You are allowed to attend and speak to Council on the subject.

- The proposed licensed person capacity (occupant load), which includes staff and patrons is 40 persons, down from 225 persons.

- The proposed hours are Sunday to Thursday 12:00 h - 24:00 h and Friday and Saturday 12:00 h - 1:00 h (from the hours of Sunday 19:00 h - 24:00 h and Monday to Saturday 19:00 to 2:00 h).

"[Randall's] aesthetic poll was more accurate than his political acumen"

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#4 VicHockeyFan

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Posted 26 March 2008 - 09:53 AM

^ To clairfy, the restaurant side is gonna be gone if this is approved.

#5 Holden West

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Posted 26 March 2008 - 10:17 AM

How can that place survive with only 30 customers at any given time? No lunch on the patio? I'm confused.
"Beaver, ahoy!""The bridge is like a magnet, attracting both pedestrians and over 30,000 vehicles daily who enjoy the views of Victoria's harbour. The skyline may change, but "Big Blue" as some call it, will always be there."
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#6 VicHockeyFan

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Posted 26 March 2008 - 10:32 AM

How can that place survive with only 30 customers at any given time? No lunch on the patio? I'm confused.


37 customers, I'd say. The kitchen is shared with the other side.

#7 gumgum

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Posted 26 March 2008 - 10:32 AM

Now I won't be able to go to Canoe with the family because of this new designation.
BC has to get rid of these archaic liquor laws.
Anyone can go into a pub in Ontario, as long as underage don't drink.

#8 aastra

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Posted 26 March 2008 - 10:52 AM

I don't understand. Who wants this? Does the city want this? Why?

#9 VicHockeyFan

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Posted 26 March 2008 - 10:59 AM

I don't understand. Who wants this? Does the city want this? Why?


The city wants it. The police want it. The liquor branch has no objections. It actually reduces the operating hours of that side. It also permanently takes that Soundgarden licence down to 40 from 225 so it can't spring up anywhere else as a full-on nightclub. But yes, no longer can minors go there if approved.

#10 Ms. B. Havin

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Posted 26 March 2008 - 11:45 AM

^ My understanding, after talking to someone official from Tourism Victoria, is that minors are allowed to go into pubs etc. if they also serve food, provided food is ordered. I told this person that this had definitely not been my experience here in Victoria when I had my kids in tow, and she insisted that it is the law to allow minors if food is served.

Can anyone clarify this? I thought of calling the Irish Times, for example, but I'd probably just get some server who would tell me that kids aren't allowed (as it's better to err on the side of safety when you're dealing with licensing issues).

The Tourism person was adamant, insisting the law was changed, not least to accommodate tourists who were pissed off that they couldn't go into many places with their kids.

Signed,
Confused...

PS: Maybe someone can ask council this on Thursday and post the answer here?
When you buy a game, you buy the rules. Play happens in the space between the rules.

#11 G-Man

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Posted 26 March 2008 - 11:46 AM

So there you have it, the Victoria Police and the City of Victoria hate babies.

#12 jklymak

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Posted 26 March 2008 - 11:53 AM

BC Liquor License classes. I'm pretty sure we are talking "liquor primary" here and those do not allow minors.

I think there definitely should be a "pub" license for most of the pubs in town. However, other jurisdictions where I've seen that, the trade off was no hard alcohol, and they must have a full kitchen.

Ironically, in Seattle it used to be the other way around. You had to have a restaurant to serve alcohol, but pubs did not need to serve food. Thus many of the watering holes had restaurants out front and the bar in the back. Made for some interesting venues.

#13 VicHockeyFan

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Posted 26 March 2008 - 12:08 PM

BC Liquor License classes. I'm pretty sure we are talking "liquor primary" here and those do not allow minors.

I think there definitely should be a "pub" license for most of the pubs in town. However, other jurisdictions where I've seen that, the trade off was no hard alcohol, and they must have a full kitchen.

Ironically, in Seattle it used to be the other way around. You had to have a restaurant to serve alcohol, but pubs did not need to serve food. Thus many of the watering holes had restaurants out front and the bar in the back. Made for some interesting venues.


Ya, Seattle used to have strange rules. Some nightclubs could have underagers (18-20) up to certain hours too. Some clubs could only have beer/wine.

But to clairfy B. Havin, you are either liquor-primary, or food-primary. Food-primary must serve food at all hours that liquor is available. Food-primary must also have a seat and table/counter-space for each and every patron allowed by their license, whereas some nightclubs/pubs allow lots more peeps than they can seat. Irish Times is liquor-primary. No kids.

#14 Ms. B. Havin

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Posted 26 March 2008 - 12:10 PM

Looking around on the BC Liquor Control site, it's still not clear. For example, for Liquor Primary, it says:

Minors are generally not allowed in liquor-primary establishments (bars, pubs, nightclubs, etc), unless they are working as entertainers or the establishment's primary function is not to serve liquor (it is a licensed stadium, concert hall, train or airplane, for example).
http://www.pssg.gov....ensing/laws.htm

Note that it says "generally not allowed," which suggests what? That there are exceptions? Beyond working as entertainers?

On the page outlining the licensee's responsibilities, it says just one thing regarding minors (again, referencing Liquor Primary), and it's the obvious:

You may not sell, serve or supply liquor to a minor.

http://www.pssg.gov....nsibilities.htm

Yet it still sounds kinda vague, somehow. Obviously, you can't sell liquor to the minor, but it doesn't say that minors may not be on the premises at all (they're "generally not allowed"). I remember (at least I think I do!) when minors couldn't accompany adults into liquor stores, but now you can take your kids with you when you shop at a BC Liquor Store or any other private vendor.

The Tourism person was adamant that it's not against the law to take kids to pubs (liquor primary license), provided the establishment has food service and that you order food. I admit it sounded strange to me, too, since you'd think there'd be a run on Irish Times and places like it by parents who want to be able to bring their kids along for a nice lunch or dinner. Matt MacNeil himself stresses that (despite his Liquor Primary licences), his business is 50-50 food and alcohol.
When you buy a game, you buy the rules. Play happens in the space between the rules.

#15 Ms. B. Havin

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Posted 26 March 2008 - 12:13 PM

^^ @VHF: I was typing up my comment while you were commenting, VHF. I'll take your word for it, you're in the business and should know. Still weird about the Tourism person, though. And those laws should be changed.
When you buy a game, you buy the rules. Play happens in the space between the rules.

#16 VicHockeyFan

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Posted 26 March 2008 - 12:20 PM

The liquor branch issues you a floor-plan of your club/restaurant etc. called a "red-line". That is where you can have no minors. I suppose that you could have a minor cleaning dishes in your liquor-primary place if she could leave via a back door. The kitchen is outside of the red-line. Ditto a book-keeper working off-hours. Also, like Element does or used to do, you could run an all-ages show in your club as long as you get approval, do it outside your normal operating hours, and of course no alcohol. Element would run a say, 4pm show for kids, then the same entertainer would perform again that night as normal for +19.

#17 Rob Randall

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Posted 26 March 2008 - 07:14 PM

Don Calveley, President of The Truffles Group explains to neighbours what is going on:

I wanted to take this opportunity to help clarify any questions relating to the correspondence you will have received from the city staff regarding the application to transfer a liquor primary license to Canoe Brew Pubs’ lounge area. I have recently entered into negotiations to purchase the Soundgarden liquor license. Many of you may remember this license as it was a large nuisance to the local area as it was run as a night club, had a seating capacity of 240 patrons and was located next door to Streetlink emergency shelter. I have submitted a proposal to the city that would see the seating capacity reduced from 240 down to 40 for the purpose of opening a small wine bar in our lounge area. As you may or may not know we have a long passion for wine at Canoe and we have won Gold and Silver medals at the Vancouver international Wine Festival for our wine list and a further 3 Wine Spectator Awards of Excellence. Due to customer feedback we are wanting to expand our wine by the glass program and the lounge area is the spot we believe the most suited for this guest experience. Our core targeted age demographic will be the 30 to 55 crowd and the food offering will be designed to match this concept also. Our hours of operation will not change from our current operating hours.

I have met with City staff and this proposal has been supported in principal by council and staff, which includes the police department. The city is focused on reducing nightclub seating in the downtown core and this proposal assists their efforts in doing so.


He goes on to say he's inviting people with questions to drop by the Canoe at 5:30 pm on Thursday March 27th.

"[Randall's] aesthetic poll was more accurate than his political acumen"

-Tom Hawthorne, Toronto Globe and Mail


#18 G-Man

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Posted 26 March 2008 - 08:06 PM

So The Truffles Group hates babies too!

#19 zoomer

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Posted 26 March 2008 - 08:23 PM

This truly sucks if I can't bring my kids to Canoe anymore! It was a perfect outdoor patio for kids. They could have a bit of lunch, Shirley Temple, run around on the grass or by the boardwalk while the parents have a pop or two.

Also, I'm ticked that the city is actively trying to reduce the number of nightclub seats in the city!! The NO-FUN CITY!! Do they seriously think this will reduce the number of problems outside of clubs and bars? Probably will only create larger lineups and drunken fist fights outside..not to mention urinating on the streets because people can't get in to use a toilet. We need to deal with those who cause problems downtown, not shut down the night time entertainment scene that hundreds enjoy every night because of a dozen or so drunken idiots.

Some cities actively promote and create an evening entertainment district...not Victoria.

#20 Ms. B. Havin

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Posted 26 March 2008 - 09:27 PM

Ok, another "liquor primary" question: Hermann's Jazz Club on View St. -- food primary or liquor primary license, what say you? I can tell you that kids are allowed and welcome there, any night, every night. I used to think it was a bar-only place that didn't allow minors, but was told otherwise by a grandmother who regularly takes her pre-teen & teen-age grand-kids there. So I checked, and yup, kids are fine, provided they like nightclubs and live music. They can stay as long as they want.
When you buy a game, you buy the rules. Play happens in the space between the rules.

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