Just the other night, I finally got out on a date! The hubby and I chose Cocktails N Canvas for our free time. We didn’t get to dress like we were going out together, or primp and prep for it so that was a bit of a bummer…but we at least had a few child-free hours to spend in one another’s company! Our day was hectic and stressful so we certainly enjoyed it; We had spent the whole afternoon in the courthouse, then took my stepson’s Mom out to where she lives (an hour and a half from our place) after we set up his adoption. That’s a whole different post in itself though so stay tuned. All of that made us nearly miss the evening entirely so we were thrilled we were able to make it, even though we looked mildly disheveled, didn’t have a chance to shower and were pretty tired after very a busy day.
Anyway, we went to the Cocktails N Canvas paint party, this time being at The Host Bar in St Catharines. I was lucky enough to attend for free, in exchange for an unbiased review, but tickets normally cost just over $40 each. This includes the canvas, use of an apron, all of your supplies and the two-hour lesson but doesn’t include any food or drinks purchased. Given the title, Cocktails N Canvas, that’s part of the fun so you will want to budget accordingly. It’s a fairly new concept, starting up under a variety of companies and names, but the premise is that you get together in a local bar or pub, share some laughs, have a few drinks with your friends, and you create a masterpiece.
You will have to excuse the photography for this review but my camera has crapped out on me, my husband took most of the pictures and I’m just having all around sucky shoot luck lately.
Pulling up to The Host, we weren’t sure what to expect by the outside of the building. I have to say, if you’re looking for a place with a fantastic atmosphere, it’s definitely one to check out! I was wowed by the beautiful furniture inside, the gorgeous floors and the overall cleanliness of the place. I’m one of those people who doesn’t feel right about eating in a restaurant if they don’t have a super clean bathroom and The Host checks out.
Even if you’re not in the least bit creative, you learn step-by-step how to make a beautiful painting while being guided by a local artist. It’s easier than it sounds, trust me! My husband is a blue-collar, machine shop worker who likes sports and won’t even colour- yet the man can make a beautiful painting, I’ll give him that.
In the interest of being entirely unbiased, I have to say that we expected to go for a small bite and some beverages but we didn’t end up eating. We wanted to but found that #cnc had too few breaks, which may have been better if it was just one longer one in the middle of the event. We weren’t able to take advantage of the awesome tapas menu and the wait staff of The Host didn’t serve the party at our seats. This isn’t the first of these events I have attended and, normally, the party itself is checked on regularly so I was fairly surprised by the lack of service. I don’t mean it was shoddy- it was completely absent and I think The Host failed to capitalize on a lucrative income opportunity where this event was concerned. We had to run out for our beverages when we had a break in the painting and it wound up ensuring we had only one drink apiece. There would have been enough time to dash for a second but my pregnant bladder wasn’t allowing me to stay on task for the two-hour timeframe and Bear was busy catching up on his piece. Many of the people could be heard wondering whether or not servers would be by to take orders but no one ended up coming, even though it appeared that staffers oversaw the lesson.
That was my only one complaint about the evening and, as the place is just so pretty, we will try The Host once more (not during a painting party) before dismissing it entirely.
What we loved about the evening was the atmosphere, the easy-to-follow instructions, our personable teacher (we had Michelle that night and she is lovely) and being surrounded by people who are just as inexperienced but still having a ton of fun. I overheard so many painters giggling at their work in the start, then shocked by how well the pieces turned out. I also think that every person at our table will go again, including us, but bring along more friends next time. We sat with a big group of ladies that had all come together and so many of them added names to the list of people they wanted to get out to the next event. Once you go, it’s something you’ll want to try your hand at again.
Bear and I sat across from one another, instead of side-by-side, so that we could do the “big reveal” at the end. I was completely surprised at how well his painting turned out, as he kept making jokes about how poor it looked all the way along. Mind you, most of us did and we all ended up with fairly good pieces.
Below is mine and both of ours will be posted in a video to my YouTube channel. If you’re interested in checking out the next Cocktails ‘N Canvas for yourself, you can find a local event here- https://www.cocktailsncanvas.com/events
I did hear that they were hosting one at a winery soon so, if you’re anything like me, that will be the one you’ll want to book this very second. Cheers!