Gastown gets a new place to grab a coffee and roll the dice.
Have you ever met a steward?
Probably not, since this is a new job title created by Turquoise Goat co-owners and partners Leah Katz and Joey Kudish; When patrons arrive at the soon-to-open Vancouver Board Games Café, they will be greeted by a steward whose goal will be to deliver the perfect game.
The steward will be like a sommelier, but instead of recommending a chardonnay, he’ll suggest a game to play. This is useful since the turquoise goat will have “hundreds and hundreds” of games.
“They’ll get to know you. They host your table, but also recommend and teach you games,” Katz says. “So there’s no reading the rule book; in 10 minutes or less, you can learn about a new game and have a great time. And if you have any questions, they’re there to answer them or sort them out. debates.”
Games are the focus of the new cafe, which will mix late ’80s and early ’90s decor (expect neon colors, murals, toys and pop culture) with exposed brickwork at 122 W Hastings St. The Turquoise Goat moved into the former space Catch 122; the longtime Gastown brunch stalwart has temporarily moved its operations next door while a planned move to North Vancouver is complete.
The food will fit the theme with fun, tasty dishes and simple plating to keep the play going. They will also have cereal for breakfast, for that Saturday morning feeling.
Don’t worry, they even made sure to have larger tables so the plates and playing surfaces both fit.
It’s a board game cafe for everyone
Although there are mixed cocktails and draft beers, the drinks won’t be the main focus.
“I think we’re really missing a social gathering space in Vancouver that isn’t alcohol-centric,” Katz says. “So although we have a liquor license here and serve alcohol, our main goal is to create a warm and welcoming space where everyone feels like they can come hang out and hang out. ‘fun with friends or family.’
To this end they have also curated a selection of teas and coffees and plan to be open until 11pm Sunday to Thursday (although they are closed on Tuesdays) and 2am on Fridays and Saturdays evenings, which means people have a place to hang on. get out deep into the night without feeling the pressure to drink.
Creating an inclusive, safe and open space is important to the couple, who identify as queer and poly.
“As we got closer to becoming business owners, we also felt it was important to have that kind of openness and values in our business,” Katz says. “We’ve hired people who say, ‘Hey, you know, I’m queer and poly, and I’ve never felt safe saying that at work’ or ‘I’ve never felt accepted.'”
“If we don’t, who else will?”
They also strive to be as accessible as possible: some games include braille, they’ve curated a selection for people who are deaf or hard of hearing, there are games that work well for color blind people, and some with different languages or don’t do not require strong English skills.
Wondering what kind of atmosphere to expect at Turquoise Goat? Dinos and D20s should give you some idea.
— Turquoise Goat Board Game Cafe (@turquoisegoat) October 19, 2022
More than just a gaming cafe
Katz and Kudish have planned a lot for their space; the games cafe is the poll of the tent, but they’ll also run it as a weekday take-out cafe (it’ll open at 11 a.m.) with fresh baked goods and a cup-sharing program.
Games and a late breakfast will also be an option on weekends, as they open for brunch at 10 a.m.
And for those who liked the game they just played, there will be a sales area up front with the games people have played in the cafe, as well as accessories and sweets. And that retail space will also be digital, with an online store with pickup and delivery options.
They also plan to collaborate with local manufacturers on special edition games.
And the space will be used by local gaming communities for regular game nights or special tournaments; Kudish says some groups already have meetups in the works.
The Turquoise Goast’s doors are set to open on November 5 for a soft launch.
The cafe at 122 West Hastings St. will be open from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. On Fridays it will be from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 a.m., with Saturday also being open from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Sunday will be from 10:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m.
Normally it will be $10 per person per three hour session (if not busy the session can be extended), but for their open time it will be $7. On Wednesdays, students will be $5.