A photo of the two owners, Warna on the left, and Jin on the right.

Our Story

Dreams Cafe & Bistro Story:

Dreams Cafe & Bistro has a rich history within Peterborough’s downtown core.  Opening, its main cafe side, in 1997 as Dreams and Beans by Nuno Santos, it was one of the first gourmet coffee shops on Hunter St and downtown itself. Providing quality coffee has been the cafes focus from the beginning. In 2002, Johanna Sinclair took the reins, renamed the shop to the infamous Dreams of Beans and expanded into next door for a dining room. Johanna’s dedication to quality coffee lead her to sourcing out her own fair trade organic plantations around the world. From there she started to roast, in the back of the shop, and create the original DoB coffee recipes that embody their single origin roots and flavours to unique blends that take you on a journey through different notes and tones coffee can produce. As roasting became a passion, Johanna split the roasting house and cafe to focus on spreading DoB coffee recipes around Canada for everyone to enjoy. In 2012 Dreams of Beans Cafe was passed on to Jin, as Johanna focused on the roasting house. Through this transition Jin and Johanna focused on bringing the same quality fair trade coffees. Providing the freshest roasts, with Johanna roasting once a week and delivering straight to Jin and the cafe. For the past 8.5yrs Jin has strived to create an inclusive and genuine cafe experience for everyone entering the shop and always welcoming a chat to pinpoint the needs of any customers. Adding to the menu, with the help of his mother Anna Cunningham, of baked pastries, decadent treats and homemade lunches, along with a liquor license for open mic nights and local music spots, Jin pushed the bounds of what a coffeeshop could be. With the help of his family, friends, employees and customers we have been able to establish more than a cafe in Peterborough but a community within it, always welcoming newcomers to experience and join our little family. 

We are now proud to evolve again from Dreams of Beans to Dreams Cafe & Bistro with the addition of Warna as a partner. We cannot be more excited to have his expertise in the culinary arts joining us, and his worldly experiences. Warna’s know for his fusion dishes and creative treats, as @nuke_chef on Instagram, and are going to be out of this world and something to look out forward to in the cafe. DC&B will be expanding its menu to include tastes and experiences that will be unique to Peterborough while offering the same inslusive atmosphere. We are so happy to welcome you all into our community and hope to see you soon! 

BIOGRAPHY 

Jin’s biography

Born in Scarborough, ON to Tony Chanana and Anna Cunningham.

Lived in Pickering until 2001 then moved to Lakefield to attend high school & play for the city of Peterborough soccer club until going off to the University of Western Ontario where he graduated in 2010 with a double major in sociology & criminology, and minor in business.   From there he returned to Peterborough to run and manage his family’s Subway franchise until finding his love in coffee at Dreams of Beans in 2012. With a rich Indian and Irish Canadian background, plus travelling the world for family vacations and packing trips across Europe with friends gave life experiences that helped Jin shape DoB as a culturally inclusive cafe, offering a unique style and taste to the traditional cafe experience.

Warna’s Biography

Warna (@nukechef) was born and raised in Ceylon (now Sri Lanka), educated in Northern California as a Nuclear Physicist, worked at NASA’s Space Program and holds decorated accomplishments in Renewable Energy. He developed the first functional Energy Storage Microgrid in Canada while working for Panasonic Eco Solutions. 

His interests in food started with university roommates from various countries. He has explored world culinary journeys through travels across every continent spanning over 30 years and developed techniques of optimizing flavors, textures and aromas, utilizing his scientific knowledge in chemistry and thermodynamics. His international culinary creations with all-sensory dining experience have been sought by top European and Asian restaurants. The Fall 2020 issue of 4Seasons Fashion Magazine published in Los Angeles carried an article on Warna’s background and special culinary methods.

He loves the nature, an avid forager and hiker. Warna is learning Canadian Indigenous cooking methods and edible forest ingredients to continuously create entirely new flavor and texture profiles and bring them to your palate.

When Warna joined Jin in collaborating partnership to form Dream Café & Bistro, he wanted to make as many dishes in-house at the Café. While Jin, with his exuberant Barista expertise in Coffees, Teas and other beverages, Warna focused on giving YOU, the customer, a delectable, unique, unorthodox and unusual food experience that could not be had elsewhere. At Dreams Café & Bistro, we strive for that edge and best quality of both Beverages and Food.