Ryan Devlin, son of Chris Devlin, purchased the family heirloom in October of 2020 after working his entire life in the industry, for Devlin’s Country Bistro, and dreaming of one day being able to make it his own. The story before this is long winded, but worth the read. Ryan is now the 5th generation operating business out of the very same location.
Robert Devlin’s son, Christopher, began to pursue his interest in the culinary arts at a very young age.
Beginning with bussing tables and washing dishes at The Heritage Inn, Chris moved on to waiting tables and finally to what was to be his greatest love … assisting the Chef. With the encouragement of his family, Chris decided to pursue his own Chef’s Apprenticeship. He began a 3 year program at George Brown College and apprenticed under Joseph Von Lanthen at the Constellation Hotel in Toronto. Chris graduated in 1985 and spent the next 5 years travelling and working as a Chef across North America, including California, Vancouver and Florida. Chris discovered many innovative dishes and food preparation techniques on his journey, preparing him for his ultimate dream…opening his own restaurant.
On August 8, 1990, Chris fulfilled that dream, by opening Devlin’s Country Bistro. Where else, but in the same building that the Devlin family had prospered in for over 100 years in Mt. Pleasant, Ont.
On July 18th , 1991, Chris welcomed his eldest son, Ryan, into the world. The first 4 years of Ryan’s life would be spent living above the restaurant that his parents operated, relying on the chefs, servers and close family friends to baby sit. The first years of his life were mostly spent in a high chair, being fed to keep quiet, quickly developing his passion for food. On his off days from kindergarten and on weekends, he could be found peeling shrimp, playing with flour or making concoctions with a small food processor in the kitchen.
As years went on, despite Chris’ encouragement to be a doctor or do anything except for the restaurant industry, Ryan was resilient. He began catering at 11 years old and started working full time at another high volume restaurant at 13. All throughout high school, he continued this job and catered for Chris on weekends and days off. While attending university in London, Ryan worked at a restaurant throughout the week but always returned home on weekends to cater. He finished his education at France Business School, in Amiens, France, before moving home with hopes of continuing the Bistro’s success and operating as the fifth generation of family business in the same building.
Ryan spent a few years expanding his horizons while operating Devlin’s Advocate, downtown Brantford, amongst managing the Bistro. In December of 2018, Ryan & Chris decided to sell the Brantford restaurant in order to focus on the Bistro and ever growing catering business. Now Ryan’s mind combines with his chefs to create continental and local inspired cuisine to be served in an upscale, casual environment by their loyal and charming servers. An approach has been taken to the menu design, focusing on serving locally sourced and purveyed products in conjunction with premium quality imported ingredients to ensure every satisfaction is met.
The challenges of covid have inspired Ryan to do more, do better and continue to evolve. With the reduction of Catering, the largest portion of business, Ryan decided to pivot and escalate the business. Now serving a large volume of takeout, pre-packaged meals, sauces, dressings and fresh baked goods, Ryan plans to grow and evolve within an ever-changing economy.
You can find their balanced dishes served at the restaurant in Mount Pleasant, just 10 minutes south of Brantford, or contact either of them to have your next celebration catered.