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Steve Gonzalez to fill in at Niagara Street Café as owner Anton Potvin readies it for sale

Steve Gonzalez and Nick Liu at the What’s on the Table fundraiser for the Stop (Image: Jenna Marie Wakani)

Last week we reported that Nick Liu is leaving Niagara Street Café to open his own place, an Asian brasserie. As it turns out, he’s not gone quite yet—he’ll be manning the stoves until January 29, at which point he makes way for Top Chef Canada contestant Steve Gonzalez, who’s filled in for Liu at the café on several occasions in the past. But the bigger news is that after owning the quiet restaurant off the main King Street strip for almost eight years, Anton Potvin is casting about for buyers.

“There are a number of interested parties,” Potvin tells us, “but nothing concrete yet.” Although he’d love to find a buyer who’ll do justice to the cozy, intimate feel he’s worked hard to create at the café, Potvin says he’s agnostic regarding whether they maintain the name or concept. And while he remains in charge of the wine program at the Harbord Room, he tells us he’s selling the business to pursue other opportunities outside the dining scene—although he doesn’t rule out a return in the future. “It’s gonna be sad,” he says of his quickly approaching last day as owner. “It’s gonna hit me all at once. I don’t think I will have prepared myself emotionally for it yet!”

Niagara Street Café, 169 Niagara St., 416-703-4222,