Bruce Wine Bar & Kitchen, Thornbury, Ontario
Thornbury, a lovely small town on the edge of Georgian Bay, bordered by some of the finest apple orchards in Canada and near an array of busy ski hills, is the home of Bruce Wine Bar. A few blocks away from the busy marina, it’s also a fabulous destination for summer boaters. The region is simply outdoor heaven.
This casual bar/restaurant, hidden behind the Toronto Dominion Bank, is a serious culinary gem. Few menus anywhere in rural Ontario speak ‘local’ like this one.
Co-owner Jennifer Vipond left the realm of business to venture out on her own to explore the world of wine. She is has completed her CAPS (Canadian Association of Professional Sommeliers) certification at Niagara College. And it paid off…earlier this year, the restaurant was recognized with The Wine Spectator Award of Excellence (2014/2015) for their creative, beautifully-selected wine list.
While Jennifer is inspired by all things grapes, it was her partner, Steven Vipond and owner of Kingpost Builders, who took his creativity and workmanship to the next level as he handcrafted the building that is home to Bruce Wine Bar. You can see Steven’s natural talent for restoration throughout the restaurant from the whimsical iron railings to the handcrafted communal dining table. Action central is the wood-fired pizza oven.
Executive Chef, co-owner and Thornbury native, Shaun Edmonstone, spent time fine tuning his skills at the historic Windsor Arms Hotel and the acclaimed restaurant, Pangaea in Toronto (which sadly closed in 2015).
Now, back home in Thornbury, the inherent passion for food is evident on the menu where diners should tackle his charcuterie board (terrines, salumis and pâtés) featuring a variety of house made pickled items – garlic scapes, fiddleheads, and wild leeks, he has them all! Shaun understands the notion of terroir in food as much as Jennifer does in wine.
They have collectively cultivated relationships with a host of local farmers that supply them with ingredients from perfect trout to giant basil that Shaun processes and uses throughout the winter for a variety of sauces and as a base for a splendid pizza. Shaun’s own 4000 square foot garden will be planted again this summer. Their fish is all OceanWise.
And there’s more. Throughout the year Bruce Wine Bar not only welcomes guest chefs like Lisa Ahier from Tofino’s SoBo and the Farmhouse Tavern‘s pop up HUNTCAMP TO, Steve books musicians like Devon Cuddy to play in the intimate upstairs dining room, hosts a slew of Ontario wine-maker dinners with the likes of Prince Edward County’s Norm Hardie.
Food Day Canada Menu 2016
App: BC Albacore Tuna crudo with pickled Ontario spruce tips and wild leeks
Oceanwise: Ontario Rainbow Trout, BWB Garden swiss chard, pickled fingerling potatoes, farm butter beurre blanc & chive blossoms
Beast: Grandview Farms pork tenderloin with Ontario green apple compote, roasted summer squash, Saskatchewan wild rice & house cider mustard jus
Dessert: Honey Kataifi, brown butter pastry cream, roasted peach & vanilla duck egg meringue.
Bruce Wine Bar and Kitchen is one of about 250 restaurants that celebrate Food Day across Canada. Contact them at the number below.
Bruce Wine Bar and Kitchen est l’un des 250 restaurants à travers tout le Canada qui participent au Journée des terroirs.
Bruce Wine Bar and Kitchen
8 Bruce Street, (Behind the TD Bank)
Thornbury, ON N0H 2P0