Steakhouses are staking out Winnipeg! Last month, Mr. Mike’s SteakhouseCasual opened on Kenaston and coming on the heels of that, Lot 88 Steakhouse and Bar announced they were coming to Pembina Highway in September.
Lot 88 will be a fine dining steakhouse. It brings a new concept of cooking your own steak at your table using a volcanic stone. It will be an interesting concept. It will certainly give other steakhouses competition.
It will take over the former Barley Brother’s location that recently closed at 2005 Pembina Highway near the University of Manitoba. It’s a large 6,900 square feet building with a large patio. The owners of the steakhouse approached Barley Brothers while site wasn’t on the market. The timing was perfect as the owners were about to receive a court ordered bill of $475,000 from their former location on Empress which closed 18 months ago.
Barley Brothers accepted the offer and Lot 88 will open in September in time for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers Banjo Bowl. This will be third restaurant at that spot, with Earls being the first. A steakhouse might be a good choice since there hasn’t been a good one on Pembina since The Keg relocated to McGillivary and Pembina years ago. Go back even further and you’ll remember some cheap steak places like Mr. Steak and Ponderosa.
The restaurant business is fierce. Much of it has turned to sports and grill formats. Flat screen TVs tuned to sports has changed the business. No longer is a restaurant/bar limited to a picture tube TV mounted in a box or a large blurry projection screen TV. They are ubiquitous. Still, a lot of people still love a place that has big booth, great food and are all about the atmosphere. Lot 88 will probably hit it off with them.
Pembina is a high traffic area. Investor’s Group field and the University of Manitoba should give it a spot on location. It’ll be interesting to hear what their lined up customers will think.
This has been a guest editorial by John Dobbin.
To read more from John, visit his blog Observations, Reservations, Conversations