Just because it’s on Dundas West it doesn’t mean it’ll automatically be a success. That’s the lesson the Jamie Kennedy team learned when they closed its locally driven grocery store Provenance Regional Cuisine at 800 Dundas St. W. (at Palmerston) last week.
Kennedy took over Provenance last September from chef Alex Johnston, who actually used to cook for Kennedy. (Johnston moved on to become the executive chef at the Hockley Valley Resort in Orangeville.) The tiny grocery store sold Ontario produce and meats as well as prepared foods. Jamie Kennedy spokesperson Jo Dickins wrote in an email that store’s last day was March 31, and the closure was due to lack of business:
Although the location seems to be hot stuff for restaurants, as a shop we didn’t have enough customers to support the project. Being located just up from the corner was probably part of the challenge. The customer base that we had, and that Alex Johnston established, was wonderful and supportive but the numbers were not sustainable.
Meanwhile, Kennedy has launched the Open Kitchen+ Project on Google Plus, which features videos of him and other chefs talking about the importance of supporting local foods. Unfortunately there’s one less place to buy them now.