Nordic Brunch

What was once homey and built on comfort is now cutting edge and trendy, Nordic countries have set themselves apart by being the new mecca for culinary adventures. My time in Norway, Finland and Sweden show that the Nordic food cultures is embracing international flavours while harnessing its local natural ingredients. The essence of embracing of new, leveraging local ingredients while brining comfort is found at Karelia Kitchen. 

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The Ultimate Dinner Party

I often get asked where I had some of the best meals. Even though restaurants and food events have captured a special part of my stomach and memory this past year, there’s one meal that was the most memorable.

This special meal was hosted by my good friend Ken, who is equal parts food artist and scientist. 

He visualized a dinner party that celebrated the harvest and beginning of the holiday season.

The dinner was hosted between Canadian and American thanksgiving and he called it “North American Thanksgiving”. 

Ken has a background in space engineering and has the same scientific approach to his cooking but he's creative and artistic in presentation. The meal highlights local ingredients in a modern way and has a few surprises along the way.

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Eat to the Beat

For over twenty years Eat to the Beat has been bringing female chefs together to showcase their talents in support of The Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation. This year, on November 1st, 60 of Toronto’s best female chefs came out and brought their signature dishes to the event.

The venue, Roy Thompson Hall was filled by attendees as live music from a violinist and a DJ duo offered a musical backdrop. Breast cancer survivors also sported creative and festive corsets through out the evening. It was the perfect night to taste the best of the city while supporting a worthy cause. 

Here are some of the faces and food from the evening. 

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Anticipation for Eat to the Beat

On November 1st, 60 remarkable female chefs will come together to showcase their talents for one worth cause at the Eat to the Beat event, benefiting breast cancer. Held at Roy Thompson Hall, this event is a chance for food lovers to come together and sample some of the best dishes of the city. Chefs from Colette, Mildred’s Temple, The Drake Hotel are amongst the many establishments in participation. 

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A Taste of France at Le Baratin

You might remember the setting of Le Baratin from the previous post for the launch of Georgian Bay Vodka. The delicious and attractive photos of house cured charcuterie from that post was taken during the first night that Le Baratin rebranded from Bivy and established themselves as a bistro. When owner Pascal and Chef Jean invited me to revisit and experience their dinner menu, I jumped at the chance to teleport my tastebuds back to France. 

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When I was thirteen, I had a season pass to Ontario Place and for that summer I visited the site almost every single day. From mini golf to water park to log ride and everything in between, I can still remember all their details vividly. Since 2011, the space has been left idle and because city officials have yet to commit to a plan for its future, so nature still reigns over the site and the gates remain locked. Like other Torontonians, I was anxious and worried that I won’t be able to set foot on the grounds again. Luckily, artists and curators Rui Pimento and Layne Hinton was inspired by the site’s rough around the edges un-manicured state and they envisioned a transformative art experience to be held in Ontario Place. Along with a team of artists, musicians, organizers, and partners, Rui and Layne brought in/future to life. The ten day festival runs until September 25th and is worth a visit or ten. Get ready for mesmerizing art installations, captivating musical performances and fun food trucks. 

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Located within Wilson Heights, near the intersection of Bathurst and Wilson, Paese is a homey yet refined Italian influenced restaurant. With the summer days coming to an end and our weekend packed, it was nice to slow down, catch up and meet new friends over dinner.

Once again, thanks to Linda’s invite I was able to experience Paese’s menu and also meet a new foodie friend Natalie who’s the brains behind Cooking Quidnunc. The evening was filled with great food, conversation about events around the cities and how our dream food events would be. 

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