It may be time to stop saying that downtown Dartmouth, Nova Scotia is “up and coming.” With the opening of four new places to eat and drink, in addition to the abundance of successful businesses that have cropped up – and stayed up – since coffee shop Two if By Sea broke the mold in 2009, we think that the 2018 is the year when you can say, without caution, “Dartmouth has arrived!”
Here are this summer’s additions to the food and drink scene in the former city (it was amalgamated into greater Halifax in 1996) affectionately known as the “darkside”.
Lake City Cider, opened July 2018
Lake City Cider (35 Portland Street) professes its love for Dartmouth on the homepage of its website, as well as in the symbolic gesture of naming one of its ciders after the family, which owned the building at 35 Portland Street for 80 years. Formerly known as Nieforth Furnishers, one half of the former store has been replaced with an open-air bar that looks onto Portland Street. Come for the cider, stay for the merchandise; Lake City also sells cool branded t-shirts and hats.
New Scotland Brewing, opened July 2018
The New Scotland brand of clothing and merchandise has been around for a while. Who knew that beer would be the next evolution? There’s a tangible Cape Breton electricity running through the air at New Scotland Brewing (91 Alderney Drive), just steps from the Dartmouth Ferry Terminal, where fresh beer, mead and kombucha is complemented with live music, and fine hospitality. There’s no kitchen, but the bar will order pizza to be delivered to your table from Stone Pizza, just a few doors down. This collaborative camaraderie and “making it work” attitude is what Dartmouth is all about.
Cafe Good Luck, opened August 2018
Bravely going where not too many hipsters have gone before, Café Good Luck (145 Portland Street) is carving itself a cool breakfast, brunch and lunch niche at the far end of Portland Street. Order a modest but delicious egg sandwich on a toasted buttery bun, or venture into new territory with menu items such as the roasted broccoli salad or chilled hodge podge, a Nova Scotian specialty (usually served warm).
Brightwood Brewery, opened August 2018
Last to the party, Brightwood Brewery (35 Portland Street) has moved from the market scene to the other half of the Nieforth Furnishers building. Again, a love for Dartmouth is apparent not only in the brew, but in the branding. Brightwood’s beer bottles feature cool graphics that celebrate Dartmouth landmarks such as the ferry, the bridges, and the iconic three red and white towers of Tufts Cove generating station.