Tag Archives: cafe

Comments about the Canadian Cafe Almonte — Low Family

Comments about the Canadian Cafe Almonte — Low Family


Canadian Cafe ball team circa 1967
Front row left to right:
Gary “Hopper” Houston
Bill “Sowie” Southwell
Eddie Low – sponsor
Warren “Humpy” Horton
Nev Wilson
Back Row left to right:
Gary Waddell
Clarence Timmons
Paul “Crow” Leishman
Carl Welk
Bill “Jonsey” Jones
Ricky Waddell
Submitted by Gary Houston and Anne Houston
Heather Brown Fortington I loved Eddie from The Canadian Cafe. He always had a almond cookie for me when we were there xo
Peter Low Thank you, Heather. As you were obviously a toddler at the time, Dad would have carried you into the kitchen to give you a cookie. Unfortunately, I wasn’t anywhere as successful with the little ones who came in with their folks. They’d cry, scream!! 😟
Anne Hourigan Took 6 dozen of his egg rolls back to Vancouver
Gwen Oneill Best Chinese food in the valley. Eddie was lots of fun especially when he would get ths crowd after hotel closed. It got very busy and the food kept coming
Allan Stanley OMG Eddie… and one of my teachers Carl Welk. In the late 50’s before they renovated the restaurant I used to go in and sit on one of the bar stools and arm wrestle Eddie. Does anyone remember McMullens store down the street?
Brenda Voyce The Canadian Cafe, was a favorite of all of us to go..Eddie’s food could not be replaced.. He spoiled us.. It sure was a sad day seeing the Lowes leave Almonte and , and our favorite restaurant behind..
Ted Hurdis My dad would drive over to Almonte and bring the order home ! Their food was the best Chinese food around.  my grandfather Tom Blakeley use to sell fish to your dad years ago . Hahaha
Peter Low Ted Hurdis As did Murray Guthrie. Our family loved fish, and Dad would go fishing as well (with what little time he had available).
Ted Hurdis This was my wife’s go to place . I went with her one time after the hotel closed she ordered 2 dozen egg rolls ? Hahaha I wondered what I was getting myself in to. Not the best place for a Carleton Place lad to go late at night trouble was never too far away.
Karen Hirst First of all, Eddie Low and his family were a very hard working family—everyone pitched in and had their role, all were well respected contributors and members of our community throughout the years. Best Chinese Food around—our family enjoyed take out orders over many, many years. Peter Low maintains contact with and has a great interest in Almonte despite living in Toronto were the remaining members of his family live. I went to school with Phillip and Lea Ann .
Pete Brunelle My grandfather’s 50th year of service for the fire department was at the cafe also after every meeting when the fire hall was across from the cafe they use to go there afterwards. My grandparents lived just a few
Peter Low I remember your grandfather, Pete. He would give me a ride in the firetruck back in the day.
Jan McNeill Hi Peter Low and Pete Brunelle….do either of you remember Slip Washburn who was the Fire Chief for a number of years? I believe he owned the building behind the restaurant or close to the restaurant. He was my uncle and I remember going to the restaurant with him when I visited Almonte😊
Pete Brunelle yes I do Slip was a good friend of my grandfather , I am sure it was him that use to play cards with my grandfather and chat at my grandfather’s garage when I was young
Peter Low Jan McNeill Hello Jan….and yes I do indeed know Slip Washburn. He was an important part of the team (hired by Mervyn Munro) during our restaurant renovation back in 1967…. as he installed the water, air ventilation and gas connections. I believe he learned his trade on his own – a truly gifted man whose workshop was behind our restaurant. During his afternoon breaks, I remember him coming in through the kitchen door and getting a bottle of Pepsi from the cooler, putting the money on the table by the coffee stove – and having a chit chat with my dad. It was almost like clockwork you could set time by! If ever there was a problem with air conditioning, water, gas system….Slip was Dad’s go-to guy! We were lucky to have known a remarkable man like your uncle. You should be proud!
Brenda Marshall My mom babysat Lisa and Lori and they were like our own family. We were devastated when they moved to Toronto! Yes best Chinese food ever!!! Beautiful family!!
Peter Low Thank you, Brenda. We were truly blessed to have your mom back then. She not only looked after my young sisters….but wow, can she cook! She introduced my mom to putting hot milk in mashed potatoes….something she wasn’t aware was possible.
Linda Nilson-Rogers The kitchen always had a light on…you could beg Eddie to make food even after hours!
Peter Low Mom worked 12 hours, Dad worked 18 hours, 7 days/week. Totally insane hours beyond imagination. But they had to do it
Cathy Paterson Best Chinese food ever ! Lived at the other end of the Street my brother Mike worked there Doreen Horton !
Eddy and Mrs Low were always so friendly
Glenna Kells Hey Peter Low
Weren’t we just reminiscing 😂😂😂
I remember when the egg rolls were two for 25 cents😂😂. When we got money as kids, my brothers Peter and Greg would go to Aikenheads bakery across the street for their sinfully delicious cinnamon buns, warren and I always went to the kitchen door off water street (no idea why we didn’t go to the front ???) and get two egg rolls each …. I was little and could only go if Warren looked after me…
it was an adventure for me- a pain in side for warren… what young lad wants to look after his baby sister 😂😂😂😂

I Worked there through high school with Mary & Margaret Illingworth… Mr & Mrs Low were wonderful people to work for… fond memories😘

Peter Low Lol, yes we were, Glenna Kells! Two for 25 cents back in the 60s. Now it’s two for $4 from the Golden Palace (Ottawa) – and they are delicious. Almonte people are truly blessed in that it won’t take long to drive and pick up egg rolls at Golden Palace!
Peter Low With the kind comments here today, I suppose in retrospect, it is only fitting that I give a huge & heartfelt “Thank You”…..for the patronage given to our family throughout the 35 years our restaurant was in business. Like all business people of early Almonte (1950s), my folks endured the painstaking struggles in the beginning, not to mention raising a family at the same time. But they persevered….as did all business people back then. Make no mistake, this is not something one learns in the classroom. My folks encouraged us to get an education, and to move away from Almonte. But until then, we had to do our time in the restaurant. I suppose it was my folks’ way of instilling a work ethic to prepare us in our latter years. And as I look back now, it was probably the right thing to do. As my dad once said, just after he retired in 1986 – he just ran a small business and raised a family….nothing more. Again, many many thanks for the business given to our family during our time in Almonte.
Peter Low Ronald Ford Thank you, Ron. Dad’s English wasn’t good, but he was able to relate to the general public much better than I could ever do. And your dad was always cheerful! People loved him. And to this day, I believe he had one of the best jobs (though very big and demanding) in looking after the Town Hall.
Peter Low Thank you, George Brown. Your dad delivered bread to our place back then….and he was also quite cheerful. My dad was forever grateful…..as he could easily run out of bread! Thank God for people like your father.
Karen Hirst The memory of the Low family captures so well the hard working families of Almonte, each a supportive encouragement for each other. Supporting other business owners, helping neighbors, providing a service of excellence to their community and being supported by their community in return as has been told in these posts. Passing the torch of a strong work ethic to their children….it is the foundation upon which this town rests and we can all be proud of our heritage and I think we are very proud.
Peter Low Thank you, Karen. Your father may be the last surviving member of the generation (of Almonte business people) of which my dad belonged.
Karen Hirst Yes Peter I believe that probably is correct. He purchased the Funeral Home and Furniture Store businesses from W.E. Scott in 1954 and sold the Funeral Home in 2006 and closed the Furniture Store in 2010—56 years total. Thanks for remembering Peter .
Pete Brunelle Peter Low $2.00 each was in the city for an appointment yesterday and stopped in ….still loved the ones from long ago. Donnie and I would go up river and get fish for your dad. Our payment Canadian Cafe egg rolls. Loved the payment.
D Christopher Vaughan Pete Brunelle Peter Low – I think Eddie would only buy fish from the kids that lived on Water Street. I remember being lucky enough to be with the Horton boys one day and was able to get in on the egg roll payment!
Peter Low D Christopher Vaughan Really, Chris? That surprises me. I thought my dad paid any youngster who brought in fish. I recall many times, kids used to climb over the bridge railing to get down onto the piers to have better access when casting their fishing lines. I can say, without hesitation, that the scariest part of climbing was at the very top and over the railing (it was so high). And people used to come in from Ottawa….to fish off the front bridge! Thank God for the Mississippi. It sure cuts a huge swathe through town!
D Christopher Vaughan Peter Low Maybe the guys on Water St. told me that so I wouldn’t hone in on their territory, Lol. We spent a lot of time in that restaurant, especially when we got older and it was THE place to stop after a dance! 1:00 AM and the place would be packed!
Peter Low I remember those after-dance times, Chris. To this very day, I often wondered how people spent freely back then. But then….something drastically changed over the course of 30 + years since we left. As I’ve often returned for visits, no longer do I see restaurants open late nor throngs coming out of the Almonte Hotel or Legion on a Friday or Saturday night. As you’ve stayed in town perhaps the change wasn’t as noticeable to you. As for me being 30+ years removed, it’s been drastic.
Sandy France Our apartment was next door to the Canadian Cafe when Eddie bought it from Mrs. Barr in the early fifties. He ran it as a Canadian diner for a few years. Had a counter with stools and served ice cream as well. Eddie was here for a little while by himself and I remember the day his family arrived from overseas. Such a joyous occasion! Shortly after, he converted to a Chinese food restaurant and got rid of the counter. Eddie sponsored the town Basketball team and we would go there after games and practice for his amazing food. I remember when Peter was born. In the 60s, I had a Buick Skylark convertible and Peter used to love going for top down rides around town in it.
Peter Low Sandy’s father, Robert J France, was the town clerk at the time and was one of two people (lawyer C J Newton being the other) who helped my dad tremendously in getting started in business . Dad was so indebted to both, that he prepared special meals and delivered them to both men and their families once annually for several years. I can say without hesitation that both men figured prominently in our family coming to Almonte.
Peter Low Yes, and there was also a juke box. Dorothy Finner’s husband would regularly come and replace the records (45 rpm), and click in 2 or 3 freebie songs afterwards.
Stuart McIntosh First place that I ate Chinese food.. went to high school with Phil and Lea Anne. Eddy gave us a Chinese translation when Bev Maynard and I were on. Scavenger hunt together. I believe Phil had a close call with a boat and the falls.. we had our grad party at Eddies’ place. Fond memories of great people!
Peter Low Thank you for the kind words, Stuart. And yes, back in the 60s my brother Phil and another guy almost went over the first set of falls in a small boat. Sadly, Phil passed away 5 years ago due to a stroke. As for your graduation party at our restaurant, I don’t remember that, but I am glad that it worked out. Cheers to you!
Jean Tischart My family (Price) loved Eddie’s. I remember going with Mom & sister Deb after church on Sundays & getting take out lots. Oh the food was the best.
Tom Edwards Eddy’s Restaurant was a better time in those days, than most of the stags.
Gloria Cardinal The best Chinese food in town! Sure miss it!
Thank you to everyone who commented, and if there are more comments I will document them all for future generations. Linda
Peter Low