Bauhaus Restaurant morphs into Bauhaus Group, with plans to expand to Toronto, China

Uwe and Natalie Boll add the Blenheim Pub to their portfolio, will take their flagship eatery's German-inspired cuisine beyond Vancouver

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      Uwe and Natalie Boll are on a roll.

      Since stepping into the restaurant industry nearly three years ago with Bauhaus Restaurant in Gastown, the two have formed the Bauhaus Group, and their business is expanding.

      Uwe (a former film director), and Natalie (a filmmaker) recently took over the Blenheim Pub (3293 West 4th Avenue), changing the sports bar into a family-friendly eatery. (More on that below.)

      Now, the Bauhaus Group is preparing to branch out out beyond Vancouver.

      Next year, Bauhaus Restaurant will open in Toronto, occupying the ground floor of a new building called the Harlowe.

      Then there are plans for a restaurant on Hainan, China's Ocean Flower Island, an artificial archipelgao similar to the Palms in Dubai, only larger. The restaurant will be headed by two European whose restaurants have earned Michelin stars.

      Bauhaus in Gastown was selected as one of the top six restaurants to visit in Canada and the mid-USA on the World's 50 Best Restaurants list. In 2016, it was on Canada’s 100 Best list.

      Three years into Uwe Boll’s career as a restaurateur, people can’t help but remark that his success is in stark contrast to that of his directing work. Even Vanity Fair couldn't resist, with a write-up about him last year. 

      Nearly a decade ago, he won a Golden Raspberry Award for "worst career achievement"; an unenviable nod that followed other nominations and awards for "worst director." 

      "It's interesting, right? I had to open up a restaurant to get good reviews,” Boll joked with CBC.

      Natalie, meanwhile, is co-director/producer of a feature documentary called Maker of Monsters: The Extraordinary Life of Beau Dick. Based on the art and story of the Kwakwaka’wakw carver, it is scheduled to have its Canada-wide release on March 29.

      The Bolls have a blended family of three children and took over the Blenheim Pub after lamenting the lack of independent restaurants that are kid-friendly but still relaxing and enjoyable for adults, the kind of dining establishment that’s commonplace in Boll’s home country of Germany as well as other parts of Europe.

      In a statement related to the Blenheim Pub, Natalie said she misses the Little Nest Café on Commercial Drive, which was known for its high-quality food and welcoming vibe for people of all ages, complete with a play space for little ones.

       “When my daughter was young, I used to spend my weekends at the Little Nest Café,” she said. “I was so sad when it closed, but always loved the concept. So now at the Blenheim Pub I wanted to have the same concept and incorporate a nice kids’ area and kids’ menus. I created a casual place where families could enjoy a delicious meal that was set up for both the parents and the kids.

      “Living between Vancouver and Germany I realized that Vancouver did not have as many restaurants with kids’ areas like the Germans do,” Natalie said. “Vancouver is expensive. Childcare is expensive. We have kept the prices with family budgets in mind at The Blenheim Pub. We want the community to come together so parents have places to go with their kids and not have to hire childcare just to go out and have a meal with healthy choices.”

      Among its menu items are burgers, a schnitzel sandwich, and wood-fired pizzas.

       

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