Hours: Tuesday to Saturday from 5 pm
I have always had a true love affair with great food and appreciate the relationship between wines and dining. Having grown up in a French Canadian home in Ottawa, most social events revolved around the kitchen table so it seemed natural that I would eventually gravitate towards the restaurant industry.
With a passion for all things outdoors, I came to Thunder Bay to attend Lakehead University and completed 4 years in the Outdoor Recreation program before part-time waitering jobs became full-time management positions at numerous local restaurants. In 1994, my wife Susan (an accountant) and I decided that we should pair my passion for food and my restaurant knowledge and Bistro One was born.
Our vision was to provide our patrons with a fresh and dynamic food program, a wine program second to none and service that has been described as "studied informality" - professional yet familiar.
Even when away from my restaurant duties, I flourish in my kitchen at home and relish the opportunity to host dinner parties where I can experiment with new ideas and entertain family and friends
Most evenings you'll find me roaming around the restaurant chatting to our clientele and ensuring that our high standards of food and service are being maintained. Say Hi, I'd love to chat.
Welcome to Bistro One.
Bistro One first opened its doors in December 1994 and has been “making an impression” on the citizens of Thunder Bay and area ever since. From the beginning it was hailed as an exciting new dining experience for our area. Originally located in a small building on North Cumberland Street, in 2002 we moved to 555 Dunlop Street in central Thunder Bay. Now with a new, more comfortable location with plenty of parking and an updated look and style we have the atmosphere to match our reputation. Our new facilities include a private dining area suitable for many occasions including meetings, birthdays and other celebrations.
Chef/owner Jean Robillard and his staff are passionate about food and fine wine. While the menu changes daily, there are many "favourites" that we wouldn’t dare change or part with such as the appetizer of sea scallops in a maple syrup champagne sauce or the rosemary roasted rack of New Zealand lamb with gorgonzola butter. Chef Maria Costanzo prepares amazing desserts that are a major contribution to the "sensation" of dining at Bistro One. Her signature warm chocolate gateau is just one example. We strive to be innovative and are constantly experimenting with new ways to surprise and delight our clientele.
Exquisite food is complemented by exquisite wine. We have the ability to pair each of our menu items with an extraordinary wine, many not available anywhere else in Thunder Bay. The staff are knowledgeable and encourage our clients to request assistance if necessary!
Our vision is simple...provide interesting and unique cuisine, an extensive, award winning wine list with service and atmosphere to match.
Private dining areas have become popular for business meetings, family gatherings and birthday parties. Enjoy your privacy while being catered to in style.
We have been regular diners at Bistro One since it first opened. In those ten years, we have celebrated dozens of birthdays, anniversaries and miscellaneous evenings out – all made even more special because of the excellent food, the superb service and the intimate atmosphere. We would not hesitate to recommend Bistro One to anyone!"
— Lynne Martin and Joan Ashlee
Dining at Bistro One in Thunder Bay is a rare experience. In a place where no one would expect to find fine dining, Jean Robillard and his talented staff carefully create spectacular dishes night after night. Over the years, I have marveled at the consistent quality of the food which varies seasonally. This is not food that is good "considering it's Thunder Bay," this is world class cuisine by any standard.
Whether it is the freshest fish and seafood to be had, rich meats, or expertly prepared foul, the cuisine at Bistro One never ceases to please. Jean is a master at combining taste, texture and beautiful presentation. The food is dramatic, never fussy.
Service at Bistro One is professional and helpful. The staff is extremely knowledgeable about each dish and and special requests are never a problem. This knowledge extends to the pairing of wines with each course.
Speaking of the wine list, it is thoughtful and extensive. It is also priced right. To be sure, there are some great rare vintages but you do not have to spend a fortune to find a fine wine to go with each dish on the menu.
The contemporary dining room is hip and comfortable. The lighting is just right for a romantic evening or a business meeting. Like everything else in the restaurant, the decor is perfect. Bisto One is worth a journey.
Associate Professor of Wine and Food
Department of Hospitality Studies
229 N. 34th St.
Ross Commons Building, Office 314
Philadelphia, PA 19104
The food is great, there is no hype, and Bistro One has the discerning atmosphere of a restaurant that is confident in its reputation as the best in Thunder Bay. Whenever I am asked to serve on a hiring committee at Lakehead University, I insist that we treat our candidates to Bistro One so that we don't have to shout to be heard, we can count on service that respects our privacy, and so that people visiting from out of town can see the kind of class we have in Thunder Bay
Ronald N. Harpelle
Associate Professor and Chair
Department of History