You could easily drive past Red Door Provisions and not notice it, which would be a real shame. After years of wondering why Beachwood wasn’t developing into the ‘go to’ street I always thought it had the potential to be, there are now, finally, a few pops of greatness. In fact, this little stretch of Beachwood seems to be where small buisinesses that make it big in Ottawa start out. Bridgehead Coffee has a location here, one of its first locations (although, granted, not its first). Burger giant The Works started here (and sadly the little building where it all started is going to be demolished and replaced with a town house). Then there are the spots that will probably spread across the city. Jacobson Gourmet Concepts is full of all those delicious things you never knew you needed until you entered, and then you need them all. Muckleston & Brockwell Butcher is too beautiful to be real (and I’m not a meat lover, but this place could convert me). There is now even a weekly Farmers Market just across the street in front of the church.
And then there is Red Door Provisions which I know will be taking over Ottawa. This spot is pretty tiny (and even tinier in the winter when the outdoor terrace is covered in snow, although they do put a few bails of hay out there that you could sit on if it wasn’t too cold). Inside however is a breath of fresh air. The counter is covered with treats which play games with you because these decadent looking morsals actually sound pretty healthy…gluten free, sugar free and all that jazz. Founded in 2012 (in a farmer’s field in Chelsea apparently the story goes) they offer a range of handmade, micro batch jams, marmalades and pickles and then source all the rest locally for their ever-evolving menu of made from scratch options. If you are a grilled cheese lover you will move in to stuff yourself silly with their grilled cheese focused menu. Rich assures that their direct trade, micro batch espresso and coffee from Pilot Coffee Roasters (from Toronto) is a life saver.
In the winter I like their candy cane hot chocolate which is not nearly as sweet as it sounds. It is guaranteed to put you in a holiday mood.
Red Door Provisions also has a series of workshops on preservation workshops designed to teach you how to preserve safely and seasonally in small batches at home and Chef’s Workshop Series that present a rotating cast of local Chefs, producers and artisans who have designed interactive workshops focusing on their unique trade.
Verdict: Must stop and I’d keep an eye out to see what else pops up on this stretch as it is likely to be the next big thing in Ottawa! Red Door Provisions, 117 Beechwood Avenue, Ottawa, Canada.