Although quite popular in Europe, the term grocerant is a relatively new concept here in North America. Functioning as both a grocery outlet and a restaurant, the newly opened Niche Grocerant at Broadmead Village is a welcome addition to the neighbourhood. Whether you are looking for ready-made meals to serve at home, meat and cheese boards, savoury appetizers, fresh baking, or even a bouquet of flowers, you will find an array of options here. Or you might just choose to enjoy a meal in the chic comfort of Niche’s dining area, accompanied by a glass or two of your favourite wine.
Niche Grocerant is the brainchild of friends-turned-business-partners Ceri Barlow and Jami Wood. Collectively, they have decades of experience in the restaurant, hospitality, and wine industries, affording them the luxury of truly understanding what customers are hoping to find at Niche and what is involved in all aspects of the grocerant experience. At Niche, you will find good food, locally inspired and curated, paired with excellent local wines and spirits for an amazing dining experience, whether at Niche itself or in your own home.
Starting a business through the ups and downs of COVID-19 presented its fair share of challenges, as Barlow and Wood worked tirelessly to get things going. Since they both live in the vicinity of Broadmead Village, it certainly felt like the perfect location for them to put down roots for this business and interact with their neighbours. Despite scouting out other venues, they both agreed that Broadmead Village felt just right, and now they are even more convinced that it was the perfect choice. While they had hoped to open in August of 2020, not surprisingly, given ongoing issues with COVID, their launch date had to be deferred several times, with their doors finally opening on June 7 of this year.
Niche has been a welcome addition to Broadmead Village, and customers already love the convenience of stopping in for prepared meals, fabulous cheeses, fruits and vegetables, desserts, and more. People also enjoy the option to dine in, whether for lunch, dinner, or simply a drink and appetizer. Perhaps most impressive is the breadth of local products featured at Niche ranging from meats from Haywood Farm, lamb from Parry Bay Sheep Farm, or herbs and soaps from Sleeping Dog and Mermaid Farm. Customers can rest assured that they are able to buy locally and support local businesses and producers. Seafood from The Wandering Mollusk, sauces from Zambri’s or baked goods from Crust Bakery are all also available to enjoy.
Niche also works with local wineries such as Averill Creek, Rathjen Cellars, Blue Grouse Winery, along with several other local breweries and distilleries. More recently, Niche has introduced the Meet the Maker Series, offering an in-house dining experience, pairing local foods and wines. These small intimate evenings are a great way to meet up with friends, support our local food and wine producers, and learn more about what is happening right here on Vancouver Island. Check out the Niche website for upcoming events.
The next time you are in the area, be sure to stop by and say hello to Ceri and Jami and prepare to be pulled in by the warmth and ambiance of this place. You are in for a treat, whether you choose to sit awhile and savour some tasty food with your favourite beverage, or whether you are hoping to purchase supplies for a meal at home. A novel concept for Vancouver Island, this grocerant is sure to pique local interest and tempt the palate.
For more information visit Niche Grocerant at nichevictoria.ca