June 9, 2020
U of A Botanic Garden raises picnic bar in partnership with local restaurant
When the Twilight Picnic Experience was launched in 2020, guests flocked to the Garden to spend an evening grazing on a gourmet charcuterie box in an unparalleled setting, selling out every evening the experience was offered.
“We’re always looking to create an unforgettable visit for guests of the Garden,” said Carl Charest, interim general manager. “We knew that we couldn’t just rest on last year’s success with picnics. For this season, we set out with several goals in mind: elevate the entire Twilight Picnic Experience to make it even more special, make sure the boxes are a true delight for all the senses, and keep a focus on the local.”
The Garden also wanted to make sure there were plenty of options for guests to choose from – vegetarian, vegan, hallal, gluten-free and children’s boxes are all on the menu this year.
“When we reviewed proposals for the very best partner to make the picnic boxes, Partake stood out with their beautiful food presentation, their emphasis on local suppliers, and a really delicious selection of picnic foods,” said Charest. “We love what’s inside the box, and feel the food perfectly aligns with the overall experience we offer at the Garden.”
The Garden has also added live entertainment every evening, and has an assortment of games that guests can check out for their amusement. As well, new licensing means guests can sip a Canadian wine or local craft beer anywhere in the Garden, while they stroll the pathways, smell the flowers and take in a prairie sunset.
“We know there are a lot of picnic box choices out there now – after we launched the Twilight Picnics last year we were flattered to see the copycats. But one thing we know for sure is that there’s nothing like the immersive beauty of the Garden. The combination of delicious food, music and setting makes for an experience like no other.”
The University of Alberta Botanic Garden is a 240 acre / 97 hectare property with extensive plant collections, cultural gardens and natural areas. Established in 1959, it is located 15 minutes SW of Edmonton, 5 km north of Devon on Hwy 60.
Partake, led by long-time Edmonton restaurateur and Chef Cyrilles Koppert, combines hearty, rustic French cuisine with a cozy & welcoming neighbourhood atmosphere.
The Twilight Picnic Experience is offered every evening, from 5 to 10 pm, and must be reserved in advance.
Kerry Mulholland | Communications Coordinator
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