Thursday, January 31, 2019

Propeller Brewing's arcade fires up

The wizards at Propeller Brewing Co. debut a basement bar with a lineup of pinball machines and video games.

Posted By on Thu, Jan 31, 2019 at 1:50 AM

  • kylee nunn
Propeller Brewing Co. (2015 Gottingen Street) is providing some nostalgia to pair with your pint.

The brand new Propeller Arcade Room—complete with its own little bar—opens below the existing taproom this Thursday, January 31. There’s no cell phone reception in the basement which—in the spirit of escapism—may be a blessing in disguise for dates or folks trying to meet new people.
“You could bump into somebody and immediately become friends with them. That’s the vibe that these machines put off,” says Ian Matheson, a Propeller store clerk who’s also a classic game fan. He’s previously brought arcade games to the taproom on a temporary basis “Everyone definitely showed up, and when the machines went away people showed up asking where they were. The next step was this.”

Matheson owns multiple pinball and other game machines. He purchased many of them after they’d fallen into disrepair and fixed them up back to working order. Not only did he champion the idea of an arcade at Propeller—he provided the bulk of the games from his own collection.

The current set-up is a slew of pinball machines: Iron Maiden, Guardians of the Galaxy and Skateball-themed games light up the room. Other options like Space Invaders (Matheson’s personal favourite), Hit The Ice and Big Buck Safari are also part of the mix. The arcade will be open Thursday through Sunday nights.
“Nostalgia is a huge escape from the nine-to-five life that can be a little overpowering sometimes,” says Matheson. The games aren’t the only throwback, either—the room used to be part of Gottingen Street’s old Wormwood’s Dog and Monkey Cinema.

“The concept of putting an arcade next to a brewery that used to be a movie theatre on Gottingen Street is just way too perfect.”
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Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Doughnut worry, be happy: Vandal is back

The 244 gang and Vandal Doughnuts team up for a holey-er than thou reboot

Posted By on Wed, Jan 23, 2019 at 11:18 AM

Guess who's back, back again - SUBMITTED
  • Guess who's back, back again
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"We learned sometimes not-so-nice things happen to change the course of where you’re supposed to be,” says Nicole Tufts, co-owner of Vandal Doughnuts, of the whirlwind last few months. Back in the fall she and Sonia Mota announced they’d be moving their fried-dough biz out of its incredibly popular Gus’ Pub location and down to Gottingen Street. Then they announced they weren’t—after Tufts had a health scare it was in their best interest to sell Vandal instead. People freaked out, imagining their stomaches (and Instagram feeds) without regular doses of doughnuts.

“It got overwhelming. You want to put your personal well-being ahead of everything else. But after meeting these guys, we realized maybe it was just a matter of asking for help. Now we’re going start fresh with more hands, 24 staff and already-wicked north end business owners who get it.”

Ezra Edelstein, Frédéric Tandy and Jens Heidenreich are the “guys” she’s talking about; the trio behind Gottingen and Cornwallis’ The 244 will be teaming up with Tufts, Mota and their crew to bring Vandal back to life at 2150 Gottingen Street.

“As soon as we sat down with the crew from The 244 we got a fire in our bellies,” says Mota. “It’s been more of a personal development year for us. It feels good to be back—now that we have more help, we just get to be our naughty selves.”
The pair says you can expect “the same old Vandal” with the addition of all-day breakfast and two tills, for speedier service. They’ll also be completely revamping the location’s look, Tufts says. “It’ll be the first time we have control of our own space. It’ll be totally Vandal.”

The new-and-improved team will open the shop February 10, just before Valentine’s Day—the perfect timing to share the love with all of Vandal’s adoring and supportive fans who’ve been in touch with them over this transition period. And the wacky ideas are already flowing, Mota says. “Last year’s creations really motivated us to one-up ourselves.”
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Wednesday, January 2, 2019

New year, new Ristorante aMano

Posted By on Wed, Jan 2, 2019 at 5:59 PM

  • ian selig

Our readers’ choice for Best Pasta and Best Italian food is going into hibernation for a quick minute. Bertossi Group fave Ristorante aMano (1475 Lower Water Street) rung in the new year by kicking off a renovation of its longtime Bishop’s Landing space, expanding its square footage and re-vamping the decor from floor to ceiling. The pasta maker will be on pause from now until February 19, that’s when aMano debuts its new look, and its fancy new Italian pizza oven.
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