School Nights: Welcome to Winnipeg’s Food Scene
The only rule for School Night? Conversation, great wine and amazing food.
Night school was never like this. It didn’t include free wine tastings, pulsing music and free steamed corn with gourmet whipped butters.
And no night school had as many smiling, laughing, convivial bon vivants found crowded into the lounge of Bistro 7 1/4 on a recent Sunday night.
“School Nights”—a weekly get together that celebrates Winnipeg’s food scene, the people who eat and the stars in city kitchens—is the work of local Winnipeg culture blogger Sarah Zaharia and Talia Syrie, owner of The Tallest Poppy. (See recent Peg City Grub profile here)
The pair wanted to draw food lovers out on Sunday evenings, which is typically a very slow night in the restaurant business. They also wanted to bring together Winnipeg food lovers and chefs. Everyone is welcome and the event is free. (Typically, School Night ‘students’ come for dinner, a bite and drinks inside the lounge.)
Judging from the crowd on a recent Sunday evening, their plan is working. From September until November 25, the pair will host a Sunday night get together inside the lounge at Bistro 7 1/4. (See Peg City Grub review here)
Both women are good friends with Bistro 7 1/4 owners Alexander and Danielle Svenne, who threw open their doors to host the weekly party. Everyone is invited and evenings are often built around a food theme. But the pair also plan to host a spaghetti western night, a how-to-sing opera evening and a hot toddie party in the coming months.
During September 9th’s “Harvest Night,” which kicked off the return of School Nights after summer break, Chef Alexander served samples of steamed fresh corn from near Morden, Manitoba with a choice of four gourmet whipped butters. Meanwhile, Zahara poured samples of three different chardonnays.
A live DJ spun tunes and the place was packed with 20-somethings to 50-somethings with one thing in common—a love of food, wine and staying out late on a so-called school night. I only wish there was homework.