New restaurant boasts capital ideas


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This article was published 14/07/2015 (2876 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

Two Vancouver restaurateurs are bringing West Coast-inspired cuisine to Charleswood.

Capital Grill and Bar, located at 3116 Roblin Blvd., is a 72-seat eatery boasting a casual dining atmosphere and  top-quality comfort food. The restaurant held its soft opening for family and friends on May 5 and has since been filling up several nights a week for

Originally from Toronto, Chef Wayne Martin started out his career working as a chef for Four Seasons at Minaki Lodge, just north of Kenora, in 1989. He fulfilled his personal goal of becoming an executive chef for Four Seasons 12 years later while working in Vancouver. Martin and restaurant manager Greg Gunnarson ran three well-known restaurants— Crave, Crave Beachside and Fraiche — for a number of years together in Vancouver before they decided to make the move to Winnipeg to launch Capital Grill and Bar.  

Photo by Jen Cameron Chef Wayne Martin (right) and manager Greg Gunnarson launch Capital Grill and Bar in Charleswood.

Gunnarson and Martin split with their partners on Crave Beachside and Fraiche to solely run Crave until the landlords decided they wanted to tear down the building and turn it into a multi-use complex.

“They gave us a month-to-month agreement on the lease and we just didn’t want to do that, it wasn’t fair to our staff or our customers,” Martin said.

At the time, Gunnarson — who grew up in Onanole, Man., and lived in Winnipeg for several years — had been commuting to Winnipeg for family reasons. Gunnarson reconnected with lots of family and friends in Winnipeg and before long was scouting out places with Martin to open their next restaurant.

“We did settle on a place on Corydon but it fell through.  We has already looked at this property in Charleswood, but we were used to being on Main Street in Vancouver with a lot of walk-by traffic,” Martin said. “We researched it a bit more and realized it was a really good space with good neighbourhoods nearby, obviously Tuxedo, Charleswood, River Heights, and St. James is just over the bridge so it reaches a lot of people.”

Gunnarson and Martin now frequently hear from their customers how great it is to have a nice, casual restaurant to come to without having to go downtown.

Inside the eatery, local artwork created by Paolo Giuseppe Michele Gasdia covers the walls adding a touch of elegance to the dining space.

The menu at Capital Grill and Bar offers something for everyone including salads, burgers, steaks, pasta and seafood, like halibut and tuna, both of which are flown in from Vancouver.

“People come here because of the seafood, there is nothing like fresh halibut or fresh seafood,” Gunnarson said.

He says the beer battered halibut fish and chips is by far the best-selling dish at the restaurant.

“We dip it in Half Pints’ Little Scrapper so it’s got that hoppiness to it but it still has a nice, light batter,” Gunnarson said.

Martin said the restaurant tries to offer a Four Seasons-like standard while remaining  casual, unpretentious and affordable, as it is a neighbourhood restaurant.

Both Martin and Gunnarson are enjoying Winnipeg and said the response they have received from the local community has been fantastic. Capital Grill and Bar is open for lunch and dinner Tuesday through Sunday.

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