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Canvas Bar (Bar)

Picture of Canvas Bar in Shoreditch, London

235 Old Street, Shoreditch, London, EC1V 9HE
Cuisine: [Other/Unclassified]
Tel: 020 7336 0275 | Email to Canvas Bar | Transport: Old Street | Write review

Canvas Bar Review

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Top 10 things you need to know about Canvas Bar:

1) At first it feels a bit like a bus station.

2) Bear with me. 7pm on an early spring evening and the cosy dusk has yet to descend, so I can see the unswept floor, and yet-to-take-on-an ‘interesting’ industrial allure décor, in all its scathing day-lit glory. Plus, Old Street’s beast has woken, if indeed it ever sleeps. The roundabout, just beyond the window pane, throbs. It’s rush hour. There are 20 buses. (What do they say about buses again?) A man comes in to pee. He’s chucked out. It’s touch and go whether he’ll pee against the wall.

3) But then the magic happens. Here’s dusk. Here’s candles. And here’s Karolis Petraska.

4) The young bar manager is the heart of Canvas. He started four months ago on New Year’s Eve – “That was a baptism of fire” – and he has a vision. Cocktails are naturally essential to Canvas but he plans to take them to a whole new level.

5) “I want to have a laboratory downstairs,” he tells us. “I want regulars to have their own blends with their names on behind the bar.” Our Wednesday night starts to buzz, work stress fragments. Karolis makes us a Smoky Old Fashioned. He burns lavender; the smoke goes down a tube into a bottle of whiskey infused with cinnamon sticks and orange peel by his fair hands.

6) Next there’s a Pink Diamond, vodka and hibiscus flower. Then a white chocolate and melon Martini.

7) My shoulders loosen, we stop talking shop. We start talking life. That kind of chat that lurches from big subject to big subject as smoothly as honey; fuelled by boozy nectar and an amber-hued ambience. The bassy music pumps, but not so loudly that we’re disturbed. The science lab high stools begin to fill.

8) And this is before the art arrives. This is Canvas Bar blank. Soon it will become a gallery.

9) By now the walls will be adorned with the work of Zina, a Norwegian street artist whose graffiti-style art will brighten the industrial décor making Canvas Bar a shoe-in for east London cool. And the art will change regularly.

10) So that’s a free exhibition while you drink burnt lavender-infused cocktails, kids. And when you’re done, it’ll be pretty easy to catch a bus home, I reckon.
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Venue ID: 24792

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"Popped in for a few gins, and the bartender, Sophie was fab! Super friendly, knows what she's doing, drinks were lovely. Super nice pub. " Which venue is this?

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"Popped in for a few gins, and the bartender, Sophie was fab! Super friendly, knows what she's doing, drinks were lovely. Super nice pub. " Which venue is this?

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