When Alba Lisa opened an all-natural Mexican food company in Alliston in July 2013, her plan was to serve the wholesale market and offer a few retail items. That all changed, however, when folks started wandering into the downtown tortilla and tortilla chip factory asking for menus. I would tell them that I didn't serve food, but if they could wait a minute, I would make them up a delicious quesadilla and sell it to them, explains the cheery entrepreneur who co-owns the business with her husband Ted Quinn. We listened to our customers, and that's how the take-out business started. More
Laurie Warwick greets most of her customers by their first names. And she listens to their suggestions. Thanks to customer feedback, we've evolved from a bakery café to a prepared food market that also serves light lunches and treats, explains the cheery 43-year-old chef and owner of Warwick Hughes Food Market. On a cold day, this GoodLife reporter sat down with the downtown Barrie entrepreneur to chat about her seven-year-old business. Over a delicious cup of Miller's Dairy steamed hot chocolate and a pear and cranberry scone, we discussed everything from the recent name change of her business (formally Laurie's Sweet Treats & Café) to her plans to expand the shop's line of fresh and frozen prepared foods. More
For Donaleigh's, the answer was expansion -- big time! We were tired of constantly turning away customers, confesses Steve Ricalis, who owns and operates the popular downtown Barrie watering hole with Don Kellett. By absorbing the building next door, the renovation adds 4000 square feet, essentially doubling the size of the original pub. More
Bob Bickmore knows how to grab a visiting reporter's attention. Have you tried the handmade truffles from Aarden's Chocolates in Stayner? asks the chef and owner of Catch 22 during a recent GoodLife interview. They're delicious. Let me get you a few to sample. After doling out chocolates, the local chef relaxes at a table in his popular eatery and the conversation starts to roll, with topics ranging from his cooking philosophy and the importance of family, to why he moved Catch 22 from Collingwood to Wasaga Beach. Oh, and he was right about the truffles. They're scrumptious. Read More..
Chef Marco Ormonde likes change. I enjoy shaking things up, says the owner of the North Restaurant with a smile. Since opening his downtown Barrie fine dining restaurant in 2007, he's moved to a larger location, transformed his menu oodles of times, had a baby boy with his fiancé Kortney and now runs a large banquet facility called the West Event Centre. Read More..
For the past 28 years, Crazy Fox Bistro's Coos Uylenbroek has treated local diners to gourmet fare. Recently, this Goodlife reporter sat down with the Dutch-born chef at his 70-seat restaurant in downtown Barrie. Having just completed the lunch shift, the 62-year-old seasoned restauranteur looked relaxed in his jeans and long-sleeved white linen shirt as he chatted about various topics, including his international culinary training, what it takes to succeed in the restaurant industry and why he enjoys breathing new life into his menu. Read More..
Thirty-three years ago, Jim and Maureen Baufeldt converted a 19th century rural school house into Mrs. Mitchell's Restaurant. Located in the heart of Violet Hill, the upscale dining establishment with historic charm quickly gained a strong reputation for serving authentic homemade fare to hungry diners. Today, the second generation continues the tradition with the Baufeldt's daughter Heidi at the helm. Recently, this GoodLife reporter caught up with the busy 40-year-old restauranteur to chat about growing up in the restaurant business, lessons her parents taught her, and the secret to Mrs. Mitchell's long-term success. Read More..
Chef Randy Feltis's plate is full these days. The only person in town dumb enough to open two new restaurants within two-and-a-half weeks is this guy, laughs Feltis, as he points to himself. The local restauranteur is referring, of course, to his waterfront eateries he Farmhouse and PIE Wood Fired Pizza Joint 2. Read More..
For the past 40 years, Town and Country Steakhouse has specialized in bringing a traditional steakhouse experience to diners. To find out what makes this downtown Barrie dining establishment so popular, this GoodLife reporter recently sat down with Steve Koussiouris, who runs the steakhouse with his brother Jim. Conversation topics ranged from the restaurant's history and house specialities to recent renovations and rebranding. Read More..
Chef Scott Carter is a graduate of the prestigious Chef School at George Brown College in Toronto and owner of one of Collingwood's finest restaurants, The Stuffed Peasant. Carter started cooking when he was a small boy and has always had a passion for food. Read More..
Within the past two years, Ester and Kurt Sattler have opened two Fresh-a-Fare restaurants in Barrie (one on Weham Road, the other on Bayfield Street). Business has been so brisk that plans are underway to open more locations by the spring of 2013. To find out what makes these fast, cafeteria-style restaurants that serve fresh and slowed cooked food so successful, this GoodLife reporter sat down with the president and CEO Ester Sattler at the busy Bayfield Street eatery. Read More..
New ownership and a reinvented menu are breathing new life into Urban Dish. To get the juicy details, this GoodLife writer recently sat down with Nick van der Wal, who has been a chef of this south-Barrie fine dining establishment for the past four years. During our chat, the 32-year-old culinary professional dished on everything from wine and his passion for street food to the eatery's upcoming cooking class series. Read More..
Regulars to The Whistle Stop restaurant in Beeton know one of the first things to do after walking through the door is check the special menu board. Read More..
When it comes to artisanal cheese, I haven't met a variety I don't like. As a result, discovering Café Fromagerie, a fine cheese shop and café, was particularly exciting for this foodie. Recently, I had the chance to sit down with cheese purveyor and owner Lorna Allen to chat about cheese (Allen owns and runs the business along with her sister Alyson Wilson and Wendy Hunt). During the interview, the shop was so busy that Allen had to get up several times during our conversation to help her sister serve eager customers. From my vantage point, it looks like this cheese shop is onto something delicious. Read More..
Take a Walk on the Wild Side - When Ted's Range Road Diner first opened its doors in 1987 there were about 15 cows greeting customers in the new eateries' gravel parking lot. Twenty-five years later not much has changed. Read More..
With a bit of coaxing, the normally media shy Shirley Dawson recently agreed to be interviewed by this GoodLife reporter. Taking a break in between the lunch and dinner rush, the local kitchen icon relaxed at her bar and dished on everything from her self taught culinary skills, a soft spot for big portions, and why she doesn't want to change her menu. Read More..
No one epitomizes the avant-garde of the local food movement more than Chef Michael Stadtländer, and his latest project, which combines landscape artistry with gastronomical creativity, proves he continues to push epicurean limits. Read More..
In the quiet hamlet of Eugenia, you'll discover a rustic, bistro' style restaurant with a lot of attitude. After a scenic stroll along the awe-inspiring falls at Eugenia, we had worked up quite an appetite when we spotted a small park and ball diamond (where we stopped to snap some photos) and further noticed a red sign across the road and old fence made of thick branches. Read More..