Launched in 2013 in the heart of Vancouver’s historic Gastown district by industry veterans (left to right) Chef Roy Flemming, Colin Ross and James MacFarlane, Tuc Craft Kitchen prides itself on serving rustic, seasonal, farm-to-table fare paired with a carefully curated list of New & Old World wines, inventive cocktails, and local craft beer. Reinforcing the notion that sharing good food, drinks and conversation at the family table while surrounded by loved ones is one of life’s true pleasures, Tuc features a warm and convivial atmosphere and a rough-hewn décor that offers a nod to the saloon-and-sawmill heritage of the local neighbourhood.
Since launching his career in the kitchen more than two decades ago, Roy Flemming has authored a recipe for culinary success comprising equal parts dedication to his craft, classical techniques and loving tribute to both family tradition and the flavours of far-flung locales in which he has lived.
Born in the UK and raised in the Caribbean, New York City and Montreal, Flemming started climbing the culinary ladder at a number of popular Montreal restaurants including Dorval’s Le Vieux Pecheur, where he served as Executive Chef for four years before heading west in 1999. After turns as Chef De Partie at several large hotels and restaurants in Vancouver, he took on the role of Regional Executive Chef for Milestones’ Western Canada operations, where he first met Tuc co-owners Colin Ross and James MacFarlane.
At Tuc, Flemming has created a menu that is seasonally informed, locally sourced and showcases his signature brand of rustic, nourishing comfort food that is artfully prepared and plated. While his approach and influences are not constrained by geography, his dishes celebrate the abundance of the Pacific Northwest region and the relationships he has forged with local partners and providers who place a premium on sustainability.
An entrepreneur at heart armed a wealth of restaurant management experience, Colin counts Tuc Craft Kitchen as not only a career milestone but a destination where he can indulge his inclination for leadership and customer service while nurturing a business that his guests feel passionate about.
A North Vancouver native, Colin launched his career in the hospitality industry at a young age with a stint at the Golden Arches before moving on to roles at a French-themed bistro with two locations in West Vancouver and on Robson Street. That was followed by a few years as a ski instructor at Whistler-Blackcomb while pursuing his business degree at Simon Fraser University. After a brief flirtation with a career in sales and real estate, he returned to his roots in restaurants with turns as a partner, general manager and owner at various Milestones locations before launching Tuc with longtime associate and friend James MacFarlane in 2013.
A WSET-certified oenophile with an ever-present thirst for travel, exploring the great outdoors and savouring great food and wine alongside friends and family, Colin credits soccer for teaching him that building and maintaining a happy and cohesive team is a critical element when it comes to achieving success — whether in sports, business or hospitality.
From humble beginnings as a busser and server to subsequent roles as general manager, franchisee and restaurant owner, James has run the gamut of the hospitality industry and emerged a seasoned professional, respected leader and enterprising restaurateur.
Born in Montreal, James’ parents had their fill of the contentious political atmosphere in Quebec in the late 1970s and split for the West Coast with their son in the back of their old station wagon, eventually settling in Vancouver. After an auspicious start working dining rooms and kitchens in high school and university, James further developed his taste for the industry during stints at various restaurants and catering companies in BC and Alberta before realizing a dream of owning his own independent restaurant when he and Colin Ross opened Tuc Craft Kitchen in Gastown in 2013.
A self-described ‘jack of all trades’ driven by an unquenchable thirst for authoring unique dining experiences, dynamic work environments — and good scotch — James shows his gratitude for the skills he has learned and those who have served as mentors by imparting his own knowledge and expertise to a new generation of young, up-and-coming workers either beginning or continuing their own journey in the industry.
Mitch draws his energy from the people with whom he surrounds himself and by living and working in Vancouver, which makes the bustling local hospitality industry in general and Tuc Craft Kitchen specifically an ideal fit for someone who grew up in rural BC before making his break for the big city.
After cutting his teeth in a small-town diner juggling roles as cashier, prep cook and bartender during high school, Mitch shifted his focus and earned a geoscience degree at UBC before realizing that a hospitality career offered a better fit for what he was seeking in his personal and professional life. He got his first real opportunity to pursue that goal when Tuc co-owners James MacFarlane and Colin Ross eyed him for a management role at another restaurant they operated nearly eight years ago and the trio immediately forged a bond.
As GM, Mitch prides himself on reinforcing the vision that led MacFarlane and Ross to found the Gastown restaurant back in 2013 — to establish a warm and inviting neighbourhood gathering place where people share a common passion for providing great food, drink and hospitality experiences and welcome each guest as if they were family.
We could not have done this without our friend and clandestine adviser Steve Booth aka “Boothy”. When he is not running his busy landscape business, Steve can be found experimenting with food and drink. Whether it is making bagels from scratch, a tasty batch of braised short ribs or a killer round of Mint Juleps, Steve’s real genius lies in the kitchen or behind the bar.