A Look Back at the Crazy Day Long-Gone ‘Boneta’ Moved Gastown Locations

I was writing a short historical piece on Gastown’s food scene this week when I stumbled on these photographs in our archives.

I’ve gone on record several times with my pining appreciation of Boneta, the now long-gone Gastown restaurant by Neil Ingram and Mark Brand. It was a magnet for people in the restaurant industry, and a great place to grab a drink between other drinks. Goodness knows how many orders of poutine I enjoyed here, all chased with cold Sapporo.

Like many people I much preferred the original location (now Bauhaus) to its new and final one (now MeeT in Gastown), but a change of address didn’t stop those who appreciated it for what it was from grabbing a stool. To me, it remains the one restaurant that got away. In a poll of dearly missed Vancouver eateries we posted three years ago, it’s still in the lead…

Which restaurant would you like to see resurrected?

View Results

Anyway, for this edition of Throwback Thursday, we look back at a unique set of shots taken on the same day – six years ago today – that show the restaurant on its momentous moving day, hectically in transit from one location to another.

  • The paper is up at the old Boneta
  • Gone are the Charles Forsberg paintings...
  • The liquor is gone from the shelves
  • Where'd the bar go at the old Boneta? Sniff...
  • Phew! There it is...destined for the new bar around the corner
  • Kitchen surplus now sits in the dining room of the old Boneta
  • The old Boneta. Funny how they got through 4 years in Gastown without a broken window and then someone puts their first through one just four days after they close!
  • Mark in the old Boneta, which will shortly be reborn as a private function space.
  • Courtyard approach (those glass walls are convertible)
  • Exterior from Water St. entrance
  • Exterior
  • Mark sliding open the glass doors
  • Mark sliding open the glass doors
  • Rodney having a laugh up in the rafters
  • Gnarled concrete pillars won't be dressed
  • Original Boneta siding is visible everywhere.
  • Original Boneta siding is visible everywhere.
  • Ceiling detail
  • Solarium
  • Robert Squire of Catalog Gallery working on a duct
  • Solarium
  • Wine storage inset by the kitchen pass
  • Stairway from the bar to Blood Alley
  • Stairway from the bar to Blood Alley
  • 2011 Bartender of the Year, Simon Kaulback, tries his hand at painting
  • Bar ready to be fitted and kitted.
  • Hard at work readying the new bar at Boneta for the arrival of its old top
  • At the Blood Alley entrance (which lands you at the bar)

There are 3 comments

  1. How long did Boneta last at the Carroll/Cordova location and why did it close?

Six Years Ago This Week, Inside the Very Short-Lived ‘Fat Dragon’

This Chinese-meets-American BBQ eatery lasted a mere eight months at 566 Powell Street - a tragedy given how delicious it was!

Looking Back at the Launch of Gastown’s PiDGiN, Five Years Ago This Week

One of Vancouver's most ambitious and beautiful restaurants was unveiled to the dining public on February 2nd, 2013. We were there.

The Always Busy La Mezcaleria on Commercial Drive Almost Never Happened

Five years ago this week the owners of La Mezcaleria were in crisis mode after having to wait nine months for an electrical upgrade.

Eight Years On, Looking Back at La Taqueria’s First Service on Hastings Street

The little hole-in-the-wall goes under the renovations knife this week. This is what it looked like on opening night back in 2009.