Bizzline: Port gets an Italian flavour injection

By Don Fraser, St. Catharines Standard

Acqua Restaurant and Bar

Acqua Restaurant and Bar

Port Dalhousie has a major new culinary attraction, following the lengthy renovation of its 1 Lock St. site.

What was once the home of Marie’s Seafood and later Portview Restaurant has a new incarnation as Acqua Restaurant and Bar.

Its proprietor Frank Basile has coordinated extensive renovations and added detailed decor to his eatery.

The restaurant, which opened May 6, also features works from artist Krista Reimer, with oil on masonite and canvas, and ceiling frescoes.

“This property came up and was available and I thought ‘this should be a great opportunity,’” said Basile, whom adds he put considerable time and effort into making his Italian and Mediterranean-themed restaurant a standout.

“It’s all been my vision … I wanted to do this and do it right; to perfection,” Basile said. “I’ve been at it for 5 1/2 years and ‘decored’ everything in there.”

As for Acqua, Italian for water, “I wanted something simple, clean and fresh … and Port of course is known for its water.”

“You take the lake, Martindale Pond, the canal, I thought ‘why not just call it Acqua.’”

Its chef Diego Pasi hails from northern Italy and has been in the industry for 36 years, his specialities include pasta from scratch, in-house pizza, lobster ravioli and desserts from scratch.



St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corporation was handed a prestigious award from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.

The kudos are for developing the world’s first hands-free mooring system for ships going through its locks.

The “promising innovation in transport award” is offered by the International Transport Forum at the OECD, an intergovernmental organization for the transport sector.

It was presented on May 28 in Leipzig, Germany, during the 2015 Summit of Transport Ministers.

The mooring system uses vacuum pads on vertical rails to secure the ship during the lockage process, tracking the ship as it is raised or lowered, while keeping it at a fixed distance from the lock wall.

Full deployment of the devices at all high-lift locks is to be complete in 2018.


Lou Puglisi, the owner of PondView Estate Winery in Niagara-on-the-Lake, is inviting the public to the winery’s fifth anniversary celebration on Friday, June 19 from 5-9 p.m.

Puglisi will be barbecuing a feast, with a flight of four of its featured wines and live music.

Tickets are $40 and can be purchased in advance at


United Motor Collision has rebranded itself as Fix Auto St. Catharines. It marks its one year anniversary of on-site mechanical services.

The site at 276 Merritt St. celebrated its change with a recent grand reopening cookout.


Stance Shoes, a division of Niagara-based Arlies Group of Companies, has opened its first outlet store in Canada One Brand Name Outlets in Niagara Falls.

Stance says it marks the first in a series of store openings over the next six months, as is the 12th location to open in canada.


The Bizzline column appears weekly. Send your north Niagara business story/ information tips to 905-684-7251, ext. 1161, e-mail him at or Tweet him @don_standard  

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