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smart | city

Dashing through downtown, on a one-horse open sleigh...

Finding it all downtown is easier than ever with innovative restaurateurs and lively hosts from the BIZ

aren’t available to the average Winnipegger. To celebrate the launch of its #finditdown- town campaign, the Downtown Winnipeg BIZ invited members of the media to partake in a one- of-a-kind experience: to take a horse-drawn sleigh ride tour through downtown. At each of three stops, we were adorned with some of downtown’s most esteemed culinary experiences. Gourmet sandwiches on Broadway

B The first stop introduced us

Fresh Cut Brenlee Coates

to the new downtown lunch and breakfast venue, Nick’s on Broadway. Chef/owner Nick Graumann and Chef Ana Dam- askin prepare sandwiches the

good old-fashioned way: rubbing and roasting their own meat, making homemade (divine!) brioche and sourdough, and creating their own sauces. Tey also encourage sweets with lunch, offering choc-

olate-covered popcorn and a delectable brittle for a light midday treat. We regrettably left a few of the tasty, halved beef dips behind to save room for our next destination: Carbone Coal Fired Pizza. Pizza paradise at Carbone

Here, we were welcomed by attentive servers and open

taps to give pouring our own beer a try. It held up to the lavish, high-class service that has grown customary in this downtown spot. Carbone provides bottle service upon reservation on Tuesdays, Fridays and Saturdays, and has a full guest list each of these nights when the tables are cleared out, a DJ is moved in, and a dinner out organically leads into the next stage of the night with a full-on dance party. It’s a unique experience to Winnipeg – as is the food, being the only coal-fired pizza in all of Canada. Te coal heat enhances the flavours and lowers emissions, making it an eco-friendly indulgence. Te self-pour taps are also exclusive to this Winnipeg destination, and it’s an engag- ing and interactive way to unwind with friends over pints. Tere were also pitchers of Carbone’s white and red sangrias perched on our table (we chose right!) and we enjoyed sev- eral of its signature pizzas: my favourites are the New White, with spinach pesto, cherry tomatoes and roasted garlic oil; and the Calabrese salami pizza with roasted red peppers, kalamata olives and spicy eggplant. Reluctant to leave the comfort of the free-flowing taps

Managing director of the Downtown Winnipeg BIZ Jason Syvixay kicks off the horse-drawn tour at Nick's on Broadway.

elieve it or not, you don’t get rich writing for local newspapers. But very often, journalists are rich with experience, being granted access to things that

A yummy platter of sandwiches at Nick's. Carbone's had never-ending pies for us.

and pizza paradise, we hopped back on the sleigh with two newcomers in tow: Benjamin Nasberg and Joe Paletta of Carbone, who wanted to see what their neighbours at Rudy’s Eat & Drink came up with for their outdoor winter patio. Te Igloo Ice Bar at Rudy’s

Designed by RAW:Gallery’s Joe Kalturnyk (a founder of

the river pop-up restaurant experience), the tent resembles the structures of RAW:almonds’ past – only this time, it’s frigidly furnished. Ice couches draped in faux fur, a frozen table and full ice bar inhabit the tent, keeping it a cool but in- credible immersion into winter. Te drinks were heavenly; a favourite was the Por Favor, a tequila, cranberry, pineapple and triple sec concoction with a salted rim. (Apparently,

Drinks prepped at Rudy's Igloo Ice Bar.

it’s George Clooney’s tequila – and it tastes appropriately beautiful and elegant.) Rudy’s Igloo Ice Bar is open to the public Thursdays

through Saturdays, and provides a newfound emblematic winter activity – a friendly spinoff from RAW:almond’s cock- tail bar. Te tantalizing, handcrafted drink menu is unique to the outdoor patio, and includes other inventive drinks like the Canadian Tuxedo and Winnipeg Shaft. We were absolutely spoiled with amuse-bouches like oysters, lobster cones, beef carpaccio, fried chicken wings, a charcuterie board and churros for dessert. It was a great day to be in the media – a great night out in Winnipeg – and a pleasure to find it all downtown.

How the media almost lost us a key Winnipeg development I

am a huge fan of Mark Chipman for his courage in step- ping up to the plate for the Winnipeg Jets, and for what he has done to support downtown Winnipeg.

I have worked with, admire, and consider Curt Vossen a

friend, and know that he genuinely cares about what hap- pens to this city. I have worked with Ross

McGowan and respect his crea- tive deal-making genius and consider that he was a fantastic get-it-done guy for CentreVen- ture Corp. And I respect and support Bri-

Bold Ideas Dorothy Dobbie

an Bowman as mayor because I personally know his courage and I believe in his passion for doing things right at City Hall and making good things happen for Winnipeg. For the past month these four

people – great guys that I ad- mire, respect and enjoy – have

been at very public loggerheads. How did this happen? Tey are all white hats and very sincere. Tey should be each other’s best friends. Answer: the media

Unfortunately, the local media has had a huge part to

play in stirring the pot, creating dissension and “dragging this thing though the mud.” Te motivations vary from personal to political, but the sad thing is, this media frenzy hurts us all and it really hurt the four proponents on a very personal level. I carefully read and listened to everything that was

reported. What I heard reported as fact was often very dif- ferent from what I heard actually being said. Words were taken out of context, comments were spun in a twisted way; it was made to look as though the Mayor was calling the integrity of the other guys into question, when what I heard was his concern about the optics and the process. And when the issue about process was being made, I heard reporters deliberately steer the topic back to personal

4 Smart Biz

Mark Chipman has had to face his share of behind-the-mic tactics. Photo courtesy of True North Sports & Entertainment Ltd. Advice to the Mayor and the businessmen

vendetta issues. Here were three very media un-savvy guys – Bowman,

Chipman and Vossen – being manipulated by some pretty experienced and somewhat cynical people. I have reason to know how this works; a mike is shoved

in your face and you are asked the “When-did-you-stop- beating-your-wife?” kind of question that you can’t answer without a denial, which makes you look guilty. Te other trick they use is to lob a question at you that

leads to a specific answer – maybe the topic isn’t even in play, but no matter how you respond, the question puts words in your mouth. Or they will quote an out-of-context comment from the

opposing side that is designed to elicit an angry reaction. By the way, not everyone in the media agrees with these

tactics and some of them have shared their concerns with me. Tey also underlined the personal context that shaped much of the reporting in this case. If something such as this ever comes up again, guys,

here’s what should happen. You need to call together a closed-door meeting. Yes,

sometimes you do have to meet behind closed doors to clear the air and get things done. Twenty minutes of straight talk between you would have sorted this out. What should not have happened was the continued rising

to the media bait, which only escalated the miscommuni- cation and hard feelings that were put into play. It’s time now to put aside all this crap (I use the word advisedly), and move forward. Mark, you aren’t going to pull the project. Brian, you have

to be pragmatic about the need sometimes to find creative ways that are not bruited about in the media. And Curt, CentreVenture needs to continue to do the exciting and creative things that have been making a real difference in our downtown. We need the leadership of all three of you and we need you all to be in sync.

March 2015

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