Come March 2013, Shaunavon, Saskatchewan, can be expecting a new addition to the choices of what to do for dinner.
Harvest Eatery and Fresh Market is coming to town, with owners Kristy and Garrett (Rusty) Thienes blazing behind it.
The newlyweds recently moved to Shaunavon, Rusty’s hometown, to open up the establishment that will include “gourmet comfort food, a rustic modern atmosphere, and products and ingredients from the surrounding community.”
“Rusty grew up here and has always wanted to give back to his community,” said Kristy, who hails from Vancouver, B.C. “We also agreed it’s better to start off as big fish in a small pond versus trying to open in big cities like Calgary or Vancouver.”
With a background in marketing, journalism, design and event planning, Kristy said, “For me to open a restaurant on my own would be absurd, as I’m merely a home chef who cooks for my friends and family.”
“I, however, have skills that have enabled me to develop the ‘Harvest Eatery’ brand, and design the interior of the restaurant.”
As for Rusty, his career as a chef can be traced back to when he was 12 years old flipping burgers at the local rink. After a year away from the kitchen because of work that needed to be done on the restaurant, he is “excited to just get back to being a chef again.”
“I am looking forward to cooking, period,” Rusty said. “Most of the joy I find in cooking comes from seeing my guests enjoy the meal they ordered, so really, it’s all about them!”
The restaurant also hopes to utilize local foods and products as much as possible.
“When I was younger, we ate local out of necessity, both to support local business and because it was the cheapest and best product most times,” Rusty said.
“Now we have a local certified meat shop, Hutterite communities that specialize in pork, chicken and vegetables, lentil growers, lamb farmers… what has become a marketing ploy in the city is a way of life here and it’s truly amazing.”
On top of the restaurant, there will also be a “Fresh Market” concept that will provide house-baked breads, gourmet stocks and soups, local artisan products, and gourmet meals that are ready to be heated up at home.
“With the population exponentially increasing, we want to provide both the option of coming into the restaurant, or to take home a gourmet ready-to-go meal that you can just warm up in your microwave,” Kristy explained.
The restaurant’s progress can be followed at www.eatharvest.ca where a video diary of the renovations will be put up until the much anticipated opening date.
Zoe Choy writes for the Spectator Tribune.