Owned and operated by Lindsay Cameron, Goldie’s Convenience is a unique natural wine bar located in the heart of Downtown Kitchener at 98 Queen St. After facing many hurdles, the bar held its grand opening on Sept. 30.
Goldie’s has an always-changing list of natural wines, a massive availability of by-the-glass pours and small plates for nibbling too. Throughout the bar, there are also many local grocery items, Goldie’s merch, books and magazines, and non-alcoholic drink options available for purchase. The welcoming atmosphere is enhanced by plants scattered throughout the rooms with cozy seating nooks and a dreamlike colourscape.
Cameron is no stranger to food and wine and has over a decade of experience working in the hospitality industry in Kitchener-Waterloo and Toronto. She has known for a long time that opening a spot of her own would be a part of her future.
“I’ve known I wanted to open my own bar/restaurant since my first restaurant gig in 2011. I was in the Environmental Studies Faculty at the University of Waterloo and picked up some restaurant work to help pay for school. I was very quickly enamored by the hospitality industry and the beauty of it. Whether it’s helping people celebrate huge moments in their lives, or simply being a reliable cozy spot to hangout, I knew this was it for me,” she said.
Throughout the next decade of working in different bar and restaurant environments, Cameron found natural wine and it became clear to her that the world of natural wine perfectly connected her passion for the environment and sustainability within the food and beverage industry.
A large part of creating a welcoming space is to have staff that embody the same principles and values, and are dedicated to ensuring guests always feel comfortable. Cameron is equally as ardent about ensuring that she shows up for her staff and takes care of them and their wellbeing.
“Goldie’s needed to be a place to access these amazing natural wines I had fallen in love with, but also a place to promote sustainability within the industry. Not only from an environmental standpoint, but for far too long hospitality workers have been underpaid, overworked and mistreated. This was not going to be the case at Goldie’s,” Cameron said.
The pandemic and lockdowns posed roadblocks for many business owners. Cameron learned quickly to adapt to this new reality, and continued moving forward despite the unknowns.
“[COVID-19] definitely slowed things down for me. I was set to sign a lease right around the time things shut down. Instead, I waited and found another location once things started to open again, and began working on the new space. Unfortunately, every lockdown meant we weren’t able to move forward with the space, so it took much longer than I had planned,” she said.
Cameron has many aspirations for Goldie’s throughout the next while, with her biggest focus being to continue strengthening the connection Goldie’s has to its community.
“I hope that Goldie’s can be a reliable and safe place for the Downtown Kitchener community to both celebrate the big and enjoy the little things in life. A place to learn about natural wine, but also to have ongoing conversations about sustainability within the hospitality industry,” Cameron said.
Chat with Lindsay and her team at their Holiday Pop Up Bar on Dec. 18 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. For more information, visit @goldiesconvenience on Instagram.
The earlier and print versions of this article stated that Goldie’s Convenience would be available at the Winter Artisan Market, however, they have since pulled out of the event and will be hosting their Holiday Pop Up Bar instead.