• By: Marie Waine

Tapas and Theatre at Teatro Café

Take a walk down Wellington Street West and you will find an array of restaurants–all ready to feed a hungry stomach. So how does a new restaurant make the move to join in on the food fiesta and compete, let alone survive, in the area? Just ask Teatro Café owner Ziggy Margies.

“I had to create something that isn’t represented in the area,” says Margies. “I needed to be unlike anyone else.”

Teatro Café is a new, small plates restaurant specializing in Spanish tapas-style dining. The contemporary and inviting café is located inside the Great Canadian Theatre Company (GCTC) building–aiming to add to the experience of an evening spent at a theatre production. It opens on June 3.

The café was a long time coming, says Margies. Talks began years ago, but it was not until after a few unsuccessful attempts from others that Teatro was finally able to make the GCTC its home.

The restaurant will be open seven days a week for dinner, while the website promises a future with baked goods, breakfasts and sandwiches available throughout the day. Teatro will hit its high note on performance nights at the GCTC. Guests attending the theatre are encouraged to book a table before or after the show to create a social night out full of great entertainment and food.

The name Teatro–Spanish for theatre– is not the only thing that suits the beautiful building. The GCTC is known for its environmentally friendly decision making and the café wanted to compliment this way of life. Margies was proud to share information on his state-of-the-art appliances that use minimal electricity and to announce Teatro Café as the first Ottawa restaurant to serve wine on tap. This method eliminates the need for bottles, corks, labels and cartons from ever having to be produced–working towards a better environment one sip at a time.

At a preview event on June 2, guests were invited to sip on cocktails and nibble on an array of bites reflecting the Mediterranean influence Chef Mook Sutton brings to the table. Paprika-smoked shrimp, kale salad with blue cheese, bison and fig skewers and crab and pineapple kimchi were just some of the assorted samplings offered. In a kitchen smaller than my office, the Teatro team worked together to create delicious food masterpieces.

The results of the hard work put into creating a new, modern, tasty eatery certainly paid off for the preview. We wish Ziggy and the team at Teatro Café the best of luck and cannot wait to return for the full experience.

Be sure to check out Teatro Café at 1233 Wellington Street West or at www.teatrocafe.ca.