Another jewel in the crown for downtown Dartmouth

As owner and editor of this magazine, it’s been a pleasure to witness the emergence of Downtown Dartmouth’s culinary scene. It all began back in 2009 with the opening of Two If By Sea Café, and in the (nearly) ten years since TIBS opened its doors, we have seen more than a dozen noteworthy additions. Names like The Canteen, The Watch That Ends the Night, Battery Park Beer Bar, and Yeah Yeahs Pizza are just a few of the many food and drink destinations that now draw folks from all over greater Halifax and beyond. They come for a taste of the action, discovering an impressive selection of delightful places to eat and drink that keep them coming back.   

Well, we’re happy to say that you can add Café Good Luck to that growing list.

Located on the north side of Portland Street between Dundas and Victoria Road, CGL is a charming little spot that is best described as a cross between a café and a diner. It’s a smart setup too. Your experience starts at the order counter, where guests choose either a coffee to-go or a seat to stay for a while. On our visit, we saw many doing both.

We chose to stay, check out the café, and explore the menu. We settled on a Breakfast Sandwich and a Cottage Pie with juice and coffee. As we waited for our food, we couldn’t help notice how comfortable the space felt. Like it had been open for years, there was a real neighbourhood vibe in the air. Looking around, we got the impression most of the customers had been to the café many times, suggesting they already have a good crop of regulars. A good sign for any newly opened establishment.

Eventually, our food arrived. It was pretty much what we expected from the team behind the Dairy Bar at Stillwell Beergarden – simple food, prepared well, using the best local ingredients, and priced fairly. Portion sizes were to our preference – not too big, not too small – though I admit I’d have preferred a side of potatoes with my breakfast sandwich. That’s a minor complaint though. Flavours and textures were near flawless, which left us wondering what the rest of the menu is like. We’ll definitely be back to find out the answer.

Another highlight was the coffee. I opted for drip, something I very rarely do. Shitty coffee can utterly ruin a great experience, so I’m happy to report there’s good coffee to be found at Café Good Luck. Next time I’ll give their espresso a try.

We were told they have really great cookies too. But we dropped the ball on ordering any, despite the recommendations. I suppose this is what happens when you get caught up in the excitement and energy of a new place.

If it were up to me, Café Good Luck would find its way into next year’s 25 Best Places to Eat list. I love the simplicity of everything. Of course, we’ll have to wait and see what the 75 judges have to say, but in the meantime you should experience it yourself. I think you’ll love it too.