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When it comes to brunching in a historical setting, Provisions Market and Café provides the goods  - Lower Fort Garry (photo courtesy of Parks Canada)

Lower Fort Garry (photo courtesy of Parks Canada)

By: Peg City GrubJuly 10, 2018 // Brunch, Cafe

Parks Canada’s Lower Fort Garry National Historic Site is both a fun place to experience life as it was in the1850s, and a fine and dandy spot for a modern-day farm-to-table lunch or a sublime summer event. 

Just a half hour drive north of Winnipeg, Provisions Market and Café stands at the entrance/interpretive centre to Lower Fort Garry, just a short jaunt from its historic circa 1840s stone walls. (Now here’s a tidbit: this National Historic Site was where Treaty 1 was signed in 1871, while this former Hudson’s Bay Company residence has also been a mental hospital, a penitentiary, and a country club #themoreyouknowミ☆). 

The full-service café has a splendid menu brought to you by culinary power couple Shawn Brandson and Connie McKane-Brandson, whose Winnipeg establishments include Promenade Café and Wine – one of the city’s great French restaurants, and Gibraltar Dining Corporation – the exclusive caterer for Fort Gibraltar, which includes their excellent tent during Festival du Voyageur (more on that  delicious matter here).    

At Provisions, brunch/lunch is the order of the day – and it’s all super affordable, and locally sourced wherever possible. 

Some of the top choices are the beef brisket hash ($9) – a play on the classic corned beef hash, but this one with Montreal-style smoked meat; classic perogies with fried onions ($8); and a pulled pork hoagie (anyone who has had pulled pork at Festival du Voyageur knows how killer the recipe is) with spicy mayo and pickled red onions. 

Outside of lunch/brunch service, Provisions bread and butter is as an event space. For instance, you can book intimate riverside gatherings – like a barbecue or cocktail party – in their event tent, or a grandiose wedding where guests can mix and mingle along the well-manicured historic grounds that surround Lower Fort Garry (this, before lighting up the dance floor, of course). 

always a sucker for white reception details & string lights✨

A post shared by camryn elizabeth (@camryn.elizabeth.weddings) on

The onsite tent can service events for up to 400 people (cocktail reception style), or 300 for a sit-down dinner; while the wall-less, exposed-beam reception venue – with its large wood fireplace and sweeping views of the surrounding parkland – can accommodate plated dinners for 150 people, or stand up receptions for 300. Wedding ceremonies can be booked onsite within The Oaks, a lush setting studded by large oak trees that line the Red River. 

Should you be looking to book for 2019, The Warehouse (currently in the midst of renovations) is actually situated within the historic walls of Lower Fort Garry. Here, up to 120 guests can dine on communal tables within a space that is straight out of the 1830s, while within the fort there’s also The Big House Dining Room and The Men’s House.   

The catering and events menus are extensive, providing plenty of options from four-course plated dinners, to family style platters, to buffets with carving stations. 

On the hors d’oeuvres side of things options include refreshing numbers like watermelon, mint and feta kebabs, and mini creamer potatoes with crème frâiche and whitefish caviar. Hot canapés include parmesan arancini with marinara, walleye and whitefish cakes with lemon aioli, and tourtière turnovers with gravy. 

Locally sourced entrees include pork tenderloin glazed with wildflower honey and Manitoba walleye with lemon herb garlic butter, while four-course dinners are just $36.95 per person.

It truly is one peach of a venue, one that you can discover this summer while lunching during your visit to one of Manitoba’s best historical attractions. 

For full menu of services click here.

Provisions Market and Café is located at 5925 Highway 9, St. Andrews, Manitoba, and is open seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. For event inquiries contact Connie at connie@provisionslowerfortgarry.com

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