Recent changes have been made to downtown Winnipeg restaurant Have a Nice Day. On Feb. 26, a menu overhaul was made overnight. With new additions like currywurst and pozole, Have a Nice Day has been getting a lot of buzz.
Sharing a space with The Good Will Social Club, Have a Nice Day makes for an easy choice for bar- and music-goers. However, the restaurant’s new head chef Cait Richards wants a little bit more for the food stop.
“This place is an easy default, but I’d rather it be a destination,” Richards says.
Having lived in Winnipeg for two years, Richards had worked as a sous chef at establishments like Forth. They brought some of their experience working in Vancouver at a restaurant specializing in German street food, which is where some of the inspirations for the new menu came from.
Richards also brought in a few fun, mix-and-match-able sides like the potato salad, soft pretzels and borracho beans.
“It gives us the opportunity to keep that price point but also be interchangeable (with the main dishes),” they say.
Two tacos and a beer now replaces the former hot dog special at Have a Nice Day. Adam Fuhr, local musician in the band Yes We Mystic and employee at The Good Will Social Club, had been previously known to promote the hot dog special with charismatic Instagram posts.
However, he revealed his deep, dark secret.
“It was a schtick! I’m a vegetarian, and I’ve never really been fond of veggie dogs, so I didn’t eat them that often. And I don’t drink beer, either,” Fuhr says, adding that he much prefers the new tacos and has ordered them multiple times since the recent menu change.
Richards’ hard work and positivity is not going unnoticed by the community.
“The new menu is really good. There’s lots of high-quality vegan and vegetarian options for folks like me, alongside the traditional meat fare,” Fuhr says. “You can expect good food, good folks (and) good vibes. And maybe you’ll catch the hot dog guy hanging around.”
The people behind Have a Nice Day bring positivity to all aspects of their establishment, from the food to the service.
“The people (working here) and the customers are really making it for me - so many lovely interactions,” Richards says, also mentioning the support from all of the staff at Have a Nice Day.
“Plus I get to make my food for the people of Winnipeg, so that’s really cool.”
Richards says their favourite dish on the new menu is the cola carnitas, which is cola-braised pork served with onion, cilantro and salsa verde in a corn tortilla. The meat is butchered in-house, and the process and the care that goes into it is what Richards enjoys the most.
Have a Nice Day’s hours are Sunday to Tuesday from 11 a.m. to midnight and Wednesday to Saturday from 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. Customers can expect “a new culture and a new face for Have a Nice Day,” Richards says.
“Food makes people happy, and I want to make people happy with food.”
See the full menu at haveanicedayeats.com
Published in Volume 72, Number 22 of The Uniter (March 22, 2018)