Dick Barter and Andrea Mercer sit in their cozy space on Water Street, with heated slate floors between brick and plaster walls just days before they open, watching strangers press, peeping, against the tinted front window.
The self-described “everything partners” relay the vibe of their new restaurant, “This is a place to come and break bread,” they say, between giving each other air kisses and pointing out the hand-stained pallet boards used in the bar construction.
It is a place filled with love; love for each other, love of family, love of friends and food. They tell stories about strangers they met over a meal in Lisbon, and with the same warmth, they point out the picture on the back wall of Mercer’s son devouring a taco.
When asked what type of food they serve, Mercer and Barter detail what it feels like to come back to a favourite spot in London, walking through brick archways, to a familiar back street. They point to the sense of connection people feel, all over the world, when sharing a meal. The recipes are not incidental, but they are related more by the feelings they evoke in the owners, than by genre or region. They call it, “craft food” or “world cuisine.”
With dishes from Ethiopia, Kenya, Peru, the Canary Islands, Wales, Portugal and Spain they want to bring “flavours that left a mark on [them]” during their travels back to their favourite culture, their home community in Newfoundland.
It may sound like a dizzying palette but the menu, like the interior redecoration of the space itself, holds together as “rustic, [and] easy to enjoy.”
Working with their chef, Sharon Snow, they developed most recipes using only 8-10 ingredients. The small but diverse menu includes many gluten-free and vegetarian items, along with a few just plain fun choices (e.g. “grown-up” fish stick sliders) that they hope will “make you feel like a kid.”
Together with their favourite cocktails and taps full of all local craft beer, they may be able to accommodate even the most eclectic of groups in their quest to bring people together.
Once an evening, their namesake song, “The Green Door” by Jim Lowe, will play at random, signalling half an hour of drink specials
In full support of the recent boom of local breweries, they will serve only craft beer brewed in Newfoundland. The taps will rotate, but the wine list will remain simple, with one price for red, one for white, and all organic.
Once an evening, their namesake song, “The Green Door” by Jim Lowe, will play at random, signalling half an hour of drink specials (though I’m sure a clever patron may try to skip the wait by pounding it out on the upright piano by the bar.)
Open for lunch and dinner every day by Tuesday, a limited menu will also be available late night (10-midnight) which is great news because St John’s may have a buffet of shows and events on the go any given evening, but it remains desperate trying to find a bite afterwards. What better spot to discuss a show you just saw, than over a pint and exotic delight behind the Green Door?
Follow them at https://www.facebook.com/greendoornl