The Surprisingly Cool City Hiding in the Middle of Canadian Wine Country
But in the spring of 2019 a new Lincoln opened up, one that kept its old shell, though that’s about all that remains. Now it sports a dark, almost brooding cladding, and a complete transformation inside into a mixed-use space that’s filling with an eclectic set: money managers, drone photographers, an immigration lawyer and, most notably...
Dispatch, the first permanent restaurant by Australian-born Adam Hynam-Smith... Though barely a year old, it was chosen by Air Canada as one of the country’s ten best new restaurants—a notable achievement since the list, for almost two decades, has been dominated by openings in provincial capitals, major cities, and tourist hot spots.
As the Lincoln was getting rejuvenated, Hynam-Smith and his wife and co-owner Tamara Jensen were approached with an opportunity to become the anchor tenant at the redeveloped space, and after years looking for the right place to put their first restaurant they realized this was it, embracing what even they would cop to as the "wrong" end of the street at the time they opened. “We wanted to help be part of the push for the other end of St. Paul,” Hynam-Smith says. “Like any city rebuilding it takes time, but it also takes people—people to take a risk and lead by example.” Diners frequently comment to the staff that they are genuinely surprised by the change in the city and feel like they’re in a newly hip part of Toronto, which is part of the goal. Hynam-Smith and Jensen say they want to see St. Catharines become a destination for people looking for food, art, and culture.
Dispatch's food offers a sunny warmth, whether it’s 17 or 70 degrees outside, and brings in flavors that take a broad sweep of the Mediterranean and the Red Sea, from Spain to Syria and every country in between. Sitting at the four-seat chef’s counter in the back, Hynam-Smith himself will be happy to take you through the finer points of zhoug (a spicy cilantro dip from Yemen) or manti (turkish dumplings), and anything else that comes out of his kitchen. His food is atypical for this part of the world, but even if you aren’t familiar with the flavors, he has a way of nudging you until you are.
Source: Conde Naste Traveler
Author: Noah Kaufman