Since RAW: Almond first appeared on the frozen river beside The Forks Market in Winnipeg back in 2012, thousands of people from near and far have stepped onto the ice to experience a meal. And in the kitchen, there's been no shortage of notable Canadian talent, including chefs like Burdock and Co.'s Andrea Carlson (Vancouver), Mitchell Bates of Toronto's Grey Gardens, Christie Peters (Saskatoon's The Hollows and Primal Pasta) and Joel Watanabe of Kissa Tanto, who recently received heavy praise by New York Times restaurant critic, Pete Wells.
The uniquely Canadian pop-up concept from founders Mandel Hitzer and Joe Kalturnyk has also garnered plenty of media attention from around the world. Still, it's rare the temporary structure sees visitors from other countries.
Thus, you can imagine how surprised Hitzer and his team might have been when R&B superstar Ciara and her husband, Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson, popped into RAW: Almond for a memorable dinner last night.
The couple were in town working on a campaign with Mercedez Benz. Judging by Ciara's Instagram posts, they are driving and drifting around on a frozen body of water somewhere outside of Winnipeg. The weather looks less than favourable, but it appears like the celebrity couple (thoroughly decked out in winter gear) were happily embracing the intense Canadian winter. To warm up (clearly), the two swung by the structure and sat down for visiting chef Andrea Carlson's tasting menu (Calgary chefs JP Pedhirney and Garrett Martin of Bridgette Bar were also in the kitchen last night) before chatting with the kitchen team and posing for photos.