11 Years Ago, This Gastown Diner Started Taking Shape in a Crazy World of Uncertainty

For this week’s edition of #ThrowbackThursday we look back at the very beginnings of Deacon’s Corner at 101 Main Street, just when construction was getting going…

11 years ago this week Scout published a feature about a diner under construction on the edge of Gastown. They were weird times. The world seemed to be within a bad decision of total economic catastrophe; India and Pakistan were at each other’s throats with nuclear knives; China was being a total jerk; and a young President had just been elected. In retrospect we probably needed the familiar comforts of Deacon’s Corner…

With the economy teetering on the total tank, opening a 30’s style, 75-seat lunch counter diner ain’t such a bad idea. Say hello to Deacon’s Corner, an under construction, 7am to 3pm, cheap and cheerful greasy spoon from the folks who gave us Powell St.’s Cobre. Opening day is slated for a little over a week away.

Located at 101 Main at Alexander across the street from the Alibi Room and just two blocks east of a resurgent Gastown’s gritty glitz, the joint will sling the stuff of diner legend: corned beef hash; biscuits and gravy; meatloaf; and I assume a variety of other wholesome bits of chow.

It’s food we might be needing to get used if things get bad. Really, if the markets totally implode, this stuff will be like cake. Either way, I’m looking forward to the corned beef hash, and no matter what the next six months bring, the nearby cop shop will likely provide them with lots of trade. It’s always wise to saddle up to a customer base that won’t be seeing massive layoffs any time soon.

What’s with the name? Deacon’s Corner was the name of an old gas station near owner Tyson Reimer’s childhood hood outside Winnipeg. “We aren’t doing anything modern,” he told me by phone tonight. “No wraps. No breakfast burritos. We want to stay true to the classic diner.”

  • Outside Deacon`s Corner
  • Deacon's Corner
  • Deacon's Corner owner Tyson Reimer
  • Looking out the kitchen pass at Deacon's Corner
  • Banquette construction at Deacon's Corner
  • Banquette construction at Deacon's Corner
  • Deacon's Corner owner Tyson Reimer
  • Deacon's Corner
  • 30's branding swatches at Deacon's Corner
  • 30's branding swatches at Deacon's Corner
  • choices - wood finish examples - Deacon's Corner
  • Lunch counter construction at Deacon's Corner
  • Lunch counter construction at Deacon's Corner
  • Lunch counter construction at Deacon's Corner
  • Lunch counter and booth construction at Deacon's Corner
  • Booth construction at Deacon's Corner
  • Booth construction at Deacon's Corner
  • Booth construction at Deacon's Corner
  • Deacon's Corner owner Tyson Reimer
  • Booth construction at Deacon's Corner
  • Booth construction at Deacon's Corner
  • Old school diner table at Deacon's Corner
  • Old school diner table at Deacon's Corner
  • Booth construction at Deacon's Corner
  • Deacon's Corner
  • The kitchen pass Deacon's Corner
  • The kitchen at Deacon's Corner
  • The kitchen at Deacon's Corner
  • Work to do in the kitchen at Deacon's Corner
  • The kitchen at Deacon's Corner
  • The Idle Rumbler
  • The dumbwaiter Deacon's Corner goes to the offices above
  • old wall fridge at Deacon's Corner
  • Deacon's Corner
  • Casting spells at Deacon's Corner

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