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Aperçu historique du site de La Vieille Gare / History of the Station

The old CNR St Boniface railway station, in which you sit, was built in 1913.   It was the second station built by Canadian Northern Railway in St Boniface and it carries the roofline that has become a trademark for Canadian Northern stations.  

The Canadian Northern Railway started in Manitoba and the Sprague line, served by this old station (vieille gare), was Canadian Northern’s second venture in 1898. It was routed from St Boniface through the sparsely settled farmland and muskeg to Lake of the Woods.  By 1902, this line was extended into the States through Warroad, back into Canada at Rainy River and ultimately provided another line for farmers’ grain to reach Port Arthur. 

By 1906 there were 132 villages and towns on the prairie that would not have been there except for the Canadian Northern Railway development.  This led to unprecedented levels of immigration, with 400,000 arriving in 1913 alone.  By 1917 Canadian Northern, the upstart Manitoba Company was bankrupt (partly because of the war) and the Canadian government took over the railroad and named it Canadian National Railway (CNR).  The station was operated until the early 1950’s and as an item of interest was used by many families to flee the rising Red River, in 1950.

 The station was operated until the early 1950’s and as an item of interest was used by many families to flee the rising Red River, in 1950. 

1970 La Vieille Gare Restaurant 

On  the 20th of March 1970, in front of many personalities & member of the press, the first sod was cut to 

begin the transformation of “the old station”.  It was the first “fine dining” restaurant in Winnipeg.  One of Winnipeg’s top French Restaurants since 1970, when the beautifully renovated old railway station welcomed it first patrons. 

2008 Resto Gare Bistro

In 2008, the restaurant was redesigned and renewed as the French bistro “Resto Gare”.

The old train station remains one of Winnipeg’s most stunning dining rooms. Historic elements like dark wood framing, grand lighting fixtures and railcar lounge speak of the building’s train station past. Scarlet drapes and elegant upholstery emanate subtle sexiness. A gigantic lipstick red booth now divides the large dining room, and the best seat to snuggle with a date is in front of the industrial-chic fireplace.

The coach, now used as Resto Gare’s Bar car, was built in 1914 as an observation car for the Canadian Northern Railway (car #9647).  In 1921 the coach was transferred to the Canadian National Railways.  The coach became a sleeping car, #1458, named “TRENTON” in 1953.  It then became a “Rule Instruction Car” #15022, before being bought by the restaurant.

Resto Gare Bistro is the most authentic French restaurant in the St Boniface French Quarter, offers full bilingual French service. 

Three generations of Kirouac’s at Resto Gare have strived to pamper their guests with attentive service and haute cuisine.  Linda and son Curtis continue in this tradition by providing Resto Gare customers with a memorable dining experience, every time.

 Curtis, Resto Gare’s accredited sommelier, has designed an award winning collection of wines for your dining pleasure.   

Linda Love, Curtis and the rest of Resto Gare’s professional waiters look forward to serving you and your guests.  

If you relish the idea of the finest in French cuisine, the taste of savoury cheeses, along with the most reputed vintage wines, then search no more! You have found the place!

This Jewel of culinary art  and management will do its utmost to welcome you in the true French tradition. You will find it difficult to forget its atmosphere, its aroma and its delicate taste.

Our St. Boniface station is 108 yrs young…