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Restaurants push the evolution of a neighbourhood 

Chow
by Ann Thurlow

Chris Francis of Receiver Coffee Co. (photo: Buzz)Something seems to be percolating in the east end of downtown Charlottetown. Formerly seen as a mecca for cruise shippers and other tourists, the place is starting to become an interesting place for residents as well.

To wit: the venerable Water Prince Corner Shop is staying open until December 15 this year—the theory being that more visitors are staying in the area and that locals might go if the place isn’t quite so busy with tourists. It’s a cozy spot—a perfect place for some chowder in dull November or a late season lobster roll.

And over at the new Receiver coffee shop and bakery (next to Founder’s Hall) they’ve started serving pizza and pasta on Thursday nights. The pizza dough and the sauce are both homemade. You can get a slice or a whole pie. The menu changes every week—everything from roasted vegetable and bocconcini to spicy pepper and soppressata to cured meats. The pasta is fresh and hand rolled and might come with herb and garlic cream with spinach or mushroom, bacon and smoked cheddar.

Eat in or take out. If you eat in, you can have a beer.

They are also making efforts to cultivate a lunch crowd. Chef Cobey Adams is turning out some delicious and innovative daily specials, great soups and an Italian sandwich that honestly and truly will make you smack your lips.

On Prince Street, there’s a new Asian spot about to open where the old Cozy Corner is. And of course there’s the wonderful Black and White on Hillsborough St. where you can grab a sack of burgers or perch in the window and watch the world.

The point is, I guess, that the neighbourhood is evolving again—as neighbourhood should. It’s interesting to think about the role restaurants play in all this; do the people bring the food or the food bring the people?

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