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Photo by Anne Fitzpatrick

Foodie Friday: LunchBox more than just nostalgic novelty

By Apartment613 on April 8, 2016

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Post by Anne K.

Remember back in the grade school days when you would open up your lunch box and see the comfort foods that were lovingly packed by mom or dad? Well you can now relive those moments but the days of bologna and spam sandwiches are long gone and I guess mom or dad are now two young guys named Eric and Will (this metaphor got away from me).

LunchBox is an independent, clever new restaurant that recently opened in Ottawa’s East End, along St. Joseph Boulevard, close to Place d’Orleans.

Photo from Lunch Box's Instagram.

Photo from Lunch Box’s Instagram.

The menu, aka the “course syllabus”, features a variety of salads with artisanal dressings, sandwiches made with delicious fresh meat on homemade buns and a wide range of sides including veggies and dip, plantain chips, and the very tasty potato salad. The dessert is a homemade cookie dough, which comes in a many tasty flavours and is simply a must-try. There’s also gluten-free options for the buns. The look and feel of the restaurant match the school theme, with all kinds of fun 90‘s nostalgia, toys and tin lunchboxes.

A great feature of the restaurant is that they don’t use deli meats. That’s an impressive declaration for a sandwich shop to make and these guys do it with flair. The never-frozen cuts of meat are beautiful!

The restaurant is relatively new, having opened officially February 20th, but owners and chefs Eric and Will are Ottawa restaurant industry vets. Eric is born and raised in Ottawa and Will is from a small community near Cornwall and moved to Ottawa about 9 years ago. The two met working at The Works about 5-6 years ago.

Inspired by the concept of Japanese bento boxes, they started a catering company about one and a half years ago that allowed people to go to their website the night before and pack their own grown-up LunchBox for delivery to their place of work the next day. From there, the LunchBox scholastic theme was inspired by the people that they were trying to feed: teachers, office workers, and other professionals who couldn’t necessarily leave their workplace in order to get lunch or were tired of the fast-food options available to them.

When asked what the best thing is about the Orleans location, Eric and Will had a ready answer: the community itself. They have been welcomed by the neighbouring businesses and community members and the support they have received has inspired them to put out the best product and service they possibly can.

So far, everything I have sampled from LunchBox has been delicious. The homemade cookie dough is next level. The chef-recommended must-try meal is: the Summer Dress sandwich with Creamy Potato Salad as a snack, Franklin’s Fave cookie dough and Homemade Juice.

In their own words, LunchBox is all about taking back lunch! It offers fresh and fun options for lunch with a great variety of choices. The food at LunchBox is delicious and the atmosphere is fun. The attention to detail and enthusiasm that Eric and Will put into their food is inspiring. Another unique and tasty, East End addition!

You can find LunchBox at 2817 St. Joseph Boulevard.  To learn more and check out their menu, see their website. You can also find LunchBox on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.