Canadian invasion! Two Windsor restaurants to join Detroit food hall made from shipping containers

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

CBC News/Jonathan Pinto


Motor Burger and Bread Meats Bread plan to open up shop at the Detroit Shipping Co.

A project in Detroit that's been called "one of the most anticipated food halls in the U.S.A." is planning to feature a taste of Windsor.

Two tastes, in fact.

Windsor restaurants Bread Meats Bread and Motor Burger are set to join the Detroit Shipping Co., a food hall built from shipping containers in Detroit's Cass Corridor neighbourhood.

"Motor Burger and Jay [Soulliere, a co-owner] found us online and reached out," explained Jonathan Hartzell, one of the partners behind the Detroit Shipping Co. 

"We met him, tested his food, his concept was great, he was a strong operator and through that he connected us with the guys at Bread Meats Bread."

Hartzell wasn't fazed by the fact that two of the five restaurants in his project are based in another country.

"You know being in Detroit, especially at my age of 41, we travelled to Windsor back and forth a lot as we grew up," he said. "I actually live and work right across the river on Jefferson [Avenue] across from the Renaissance Center — so I'm a five minute drive from all these vendors."

Hartzell admitted that compared to his American partners the border has caused some complications for the two Windsor businesses.

"It's been kind of a tougher go. They've actually have changed attorney groups working through their visa and sorting out what kind of visas they'll be using," he explained.

"Motor Burger has been with us for about three months working on it, and they kind of took the brunt of the pains, so when Bread Meats Bread came in, Motor Burger already solved how to navigate, so those guys are getting a smoother path."

When contacted by CBC, Bread Meats Bread indicated they were not prepared to discuss the new venture yet. Calls to Motor Burger have not been returned.

The Detroit Shipping Co. is located on Peterboro Street, just west of Cass Avenue in the city's Cass Corridor neighbourhood. It is expected to open in the spring.