Since getting the keys to their new place in July, Carl and Ryan have been eager to get the space open. As per usual, licenses, permits and city restrictions held things up, but once they were able to start renovations, things moved along quickly. The pair were there everyday, helping out the reno crew where they could and getting all their suppliers and staff lined up for opening day. Ryan could often be found in paint splattered overalls and Carl hunkered over his laptop in a makeshift office.
Every detail was chosen with care and purpose and the boys are proud to point out where things came from. When the hexagonal tiles under the bar area were laid down, Carl was on the east coast at an event and Ryan couldn’t wait for him to get back to see them in place. Equally loved are the doors to the private dining room which were obtained at an auction from an old restaurant.
Engage Ryan Donovan in conversation about butchery, food or restaurants and he’ll quickly endear himself to you with his eagerness to always keep learning and his dedication to what he does. He once thought he’d be a professor and it’s not a stretch to see him in that role.
And although Carl Heinrich is not initially as open as Ryan, the Top Chef winner will win you over when you hear him talk about his cooking being influenced by his mother and grandmother. He’s had a callus on his knife hand since the age of 15 when he first took to cooking and hasn’t considered doing anything else since then.
The menu at Richmond Station is ingredient driven. A dish is only as good as the ingredients used to make it and that’s why Carl and Ryan have developed relationships with farmers and suppliers so that they know where their food is coming from. Whole sides of beef, for example, come from Dingo Farms and are butchered in house, (which is perfect in case Carl wants to “pastramify” some beef for the menu).
Richmond Station will initially be open for dinner service only, although they have plans to expand to lunch service as well. The space is unpretentious and inviting and with Carl Heinrich and Ryan Donovan running things, you’ll want to become a regular here.
Richmond Station is located at 1 Richmond St. West and can be reached at email@example.com or http://www.richmondstation.ca/