Story by Sarah Kerton, Photos by Adrian Lysenko
In Common is Thunder Bay’s newest gift to the burgeoning waterfront scene. Located in Ottawa House, the beautiful heritage building erected in 1888, this resto-bar serves up respite for the palate and the soul in a casual, yet lively atmosphere.
Owners Tara Lewis, Mitch Donovan, and Jason Dallaire did almost all of the work themselves to create a rustic-meets-urban take on the interior of a former design company. The trio has dished up a space rich in visual details, reclaiming most building materials locally. With a small stage and space to display local artists, there promises to be a rich future of vernissages and cultural happenings here. “Food, drink and social affairs is the expression we use to describe In Common,” says Lewis. “Our aim is to serve up tasty food, good drinks and to ensure this space is welcoming to everyone,” says Lewis.
This is Lewis’ second foray into enriching TBay’s food scene, having been one of the founding members of the Growing Season Juice Collective. Donovan brings an east coast flavour to service with a diverse background in business, and Dallaire shares a strong passion for good food and drink and comes with experience in the culinary arts.
People of all dietary persuasions will find satisfaction on the menu, from vegetarian offerings such as decadent layered pressed sandwiches, to brisket with Mexican crema, and dream bowl featuring grilled halloumi and root vegetable. Vegan and gluten-free options are included on the menu, and the unique bar snacks and creative food combinations use as many local ingredients as possible. Whether solo or with friends, the beautiful boards are made to linger over, especially when accompanied by a local beer on tap.
Just like the building that houses it, In Common is built to last, with big flavours served up with huge heart. Who wouldn’t want to set their future memories to such a background?
In Common is located at 40 South Cumberland Street, call them at 344-4450 or find them on Facebook.