TOQUE REGIONAL LOOKBOOK
Vegan cheese made in-house by Green Goddess Guelph
THE FOOD ISSUE
2021 FORESTER ALWAYS READY FOR ADVENTURE Pfaff Subaru | 12 Wilbert Street | Guelph, ON N1K 0A4 (226) 299-0770 | pfaffsubaru.com |
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R e le ase d A UG . 2021
magazine TM CAi SEPULIS, partner art d irec tor. d esign & i l l ust rat i on
CHRIS TIESSEN, partner ed ito r. writin g & phot ography
Contributors: Liz Deredin, Sarah Farmer, Danielle Kuepfer, Christina Mann, Sandra Peltier, Sonia Preisler, Zachary Resnick & Katie Shewan. This global pandemic has affected almost all industries – including the paper industry. Just weeks before going to print with this issue of TOQUE, we were informed that, as a result of difficulties in this industry, our regular paper stock was no longer available. Like many businesses during these challenging times, we were forced to pivot – compelled to choose a new paper stock, sight unseen. Please bear with us as we – like so many of you – find ourselves doing our best to adapt to this new 'normal'.
‘THERE IS NOTHING MORE SACRED THAN THE SPACES THAT PROVIDE NOURISHMENT.’ -JESSICA MARIE BAUMGARTNER FOR MANY OF US, IT CERTAINLY FEELS LIKE AN ETERNITY SINCE THE LAST TIME WE’VE BEEN ABLE TO SIT AROUND A TABLE WITH FAMILY AND FRIENDS – BREAKING BREAD TOGETHER IN REVERENT, BLISSFUL COMMUNION. INDEED, IT’S SOMETHING WE HAVE MISSED SO DEARLY, AND DEARLY APPRECIATE, NOW MORE THAN EVER. TO BE SURE, SHARING A MEAL WITH CLOSE ONES NOURISHES THE SOUL AS MUCH AS IT DOES THE BODY. AND THROUGHOUT THE PAST SEASONS ESPECIALLY, MARKED AS THEY ARE BY BLEAKNESS AND UNCERTAINTY, IT’S OUR SOULS THAT NEED NOURISHING. ENTER THESE WARM SUMMER DAYS THAT SET THE PERFECT TABLE FOR ALL OF US WHO’VE BEEN STARVING FOR COMMUNITY. AND FAMISHED FOR PATIO SEASON. AND DROOLING IN ANTICIPATION OF TERRIFIC FOOD AND DRINKS TO BE SAVOURED WITH FOLKS WHO, EVEN IF IT’S FOR ONLY A FEW SECONDS WHILE WE LOWER OUR MASKS TO RAISE FOOD AND DRINK TO OUR MOUTHS, ARE ABLE TO SEE EACH OTHER’S FACES. AND FIND WARMTH IN EACH OTHER’S SMILES. AND BASK – FINALLY – IN THE SWEETNESS OF IT ALL. OF US ALL. BECAUSE FOOD IS COMMUNITY. LET US NEVER LOSE SIGHT OF THE FACT THAT THOSE FOLKS IN OUR COMMUNITY WHO PRODUCE, AND PREPARE, AND PRESENT THE STUFF WE EAT AND DRINK – FROM LEAFY SALADS TO FOOT-LONG HOTDOGS, WOOD-FIRED PIZZAS TO SEASONAL BREWS OR GLASSES OF FINE WINE AND BEYOND – ARE TRUE ENABLERS AND FACILITATORS OF COMMUNITY. OF OUR COMMUNITIES. SO JOIN US AS WE – ON THESE WARM SUMMER DAYS – RAISE A GLASS TO THESE LOCAL SOULS WHO CONTINUE TO FIGHT FOR OUR REGIONAL CULINARY SCENE. INDEED, WITHOUT THESE CHAMPIONS OF FLAVOUR LIFE CERTAINLY WOULD BE FLAVOURLESS. TASTELESS. BLAND. SO LOVE THEM. AND CELEBRATE THEM. AND WELCOME THEM TO A SPOT AROUND YOUR TABLE – IN PERSON (WHERE WE CAN) AND IN SPIRIT. SUMMER’S HERE. AND SO IS OUR ANNUAL ‘FOOD ISSUE’. SOAK THEM IN – EACH AT ONCE. BOTH TOGETHER.
CONTENTS 9. EDITOR’S LETTER: THE FOOD ISSUE 14. LA FONTANA: ELORA’S SECRET GARDEN 22. DAYTRIPPIN’ WITH BECKY & ARDIN LALUI 24. D OWNTOWN CAMBRIDGE: A SLICE OF EUROPE RIGHT HERE AT HOME 30. #PHOTOSPREAD: SAUSAGEFEST 38. MEET YOUR MAKER: ZACHARY STACHYRA 40. #PHOTOSPREAD: DELICIOUS READING 44. B EER TO BEER: CYCLING FROM FIXED GEAR BREWING TO ELORA BREWING COMPANIES 54. UNCOVERING WELLINGTON COUNTY: PFISTERER FARM 58. MASTERS OF WINE: DROPPING KNOWLEDGE 66. W ILLIBALD’S BIERGARTEN: MY FAVOURITE PLACE – AS IF ANYONE NEEDS REMINDING 74. INTRODUCING WELLINGTON SPARKLING HOP WATER: IT’LL GO ANYWHERE YOU DO 80. PATIO HOPPING: EXPLORING POP-UP SPACES IN THE DTK 89. GETTING TO KNOW: CHRIS KNIGHT, FARMER AT AYRSYDE FARMS 90. THE LAST SERVICE: PRESENTED BY TRANSPARENT KITCHEN 104. WHITE KNUCKLIN’: A DAY AT THE RACE TRACK WITH THE PFAFF CREW 108. #PHOTOSPREAD: ENTERTAINING SUMMER 112. S T. JACOBS FARMERS’ MARKET: MORE THAN MEETS THE EYE 118. EXPERT OPINION (INVESTMENT): MIKE HRYN 119. G ETTING TO KNOW: MARIA FEARNALL, FRANCHISE OWNER AT F45 TRAINING 120. OFF THE BEATEN PATH: THE HUGHES LANE ART WALK 128. SAY CHEESE: THREE FROMAGERIES THAT BLESS THIS REGION OF OURS 136. OG BOTTLE SHOP: A BEER LOVER’S ULTIMATE DESTINATION 144. COMIC: GOOSE 146. COCKTAIL HOUR WITH KATIE SHEWAN
illustration: Cai Sepulis
LA F O N TA N A :
14 MET CAL T FE S
I E M
ELORA’S SECRET GARDEN WORDS BY CAI SEPULIS; PHOTOS BY CHRIS TIESSEN
‘I had no idea all this was back here,’ my
to dine here – at La Fontana in the heart of
TOQUE Partner (and partner-in-crime) Chris
Elora. But with seeming constant lockdowns
Tiessen remarks in amazement as we make
throughout this past year, we’ve had to
our way down the quaint garden path,
postpone again and again. It’s definitely been
round the side of the sweet century-old
worth the wait. While restaurant owner Denis
building, and catch our first glimpse of the
Fontana leads us down the aforementioned
restaurant’s impressive two-tiered backyard
garden path to our table – in the lawn as
patio and expansive rear lawns. Seated at
close to the river as possible – the hectic
tables underneath a large white tent (replete
cacophony of the town (with all its tourists
with hanging chandeliers) or among mature
and wedding parties and locals) dissolves
trees and remnants of stone walls scattered
into the background. Instead, more soothing
throughout the lawns, diners populate the
and tranquil sounds of low chatter, the faint
scene. Just yards away, the Grand River
clinking of cutlery, and the calming thrum of
flows by – and, to seal our impression of an
the river take its place. Idyllic, indeed.
unrivalled idyllic landscape, a family of swans serenely bobs up and down on the water.
‘It feels like we’re at some intimate garden party, or a reading at the Eden Mills Writers’
It’s a refreshing summer evening in late June. Chris and I have been waiting for a long time
Festival,’ I remark to Denis as we take our
16 seats. ‘This would be the perfect place for
soon polished off the burrata, and with pints
a wedding,’ Chris adds, spotting a picture-
in hand, Chris and I take up Denis's invitation
perfect pergola positioned beneath a massive
to tour the restaurant proper.
tree. ‘We actually have twenty-five weddings booked already for this summer,’ Denis
We gather in what used to be the living
announces – with some amount of confident
room of this former century home. The wide
pleasure. Gesturing toward the pergola, he
pine plank flooring, central staircase, and
continues: ‘We have the most serene space
floral wallpaper give its domestic history
for the ceremony over there, while here in the
away. Now, though, the room serves as the
dining area we host elegant receptions. And,’
restaurant’s pizza kitchen, with a massive
he adds, ‘we’re in the midst of transforming
wood-fired pizza oven sitting squarely in the
the upper floor of the restaurant into a bridal
middle of the space, while stacks of wood,
suite.’ While I imagine how well this beautiful
prep counters, and a makeshift bar (for both
space might work as a wedding venue, I am
cocktail and espresso-based drinks) take
distracted by a swing – hanging down from
up most of the rest of the open concept
one of the tree’s impressive boughs – rocking
space. When indoor dining is allowed once
ever so slightly in the breeze.
again (perhaps by the time you’re reading this piece), this room will also serve as the
A server arrives with pints of Elora’s Borealis
restaurant’s main entrance. And what an
Pale Ale and a beet and burrata starter. With
entrance it is. With the fire burning, and
beets done three ways, a generous portion
dough flying, and servers picking up orders,
of fresh burrata, and basil, arugula, and
the space offers up as much culinary theatre
balsamic drizzle, the dish absolutely sings –
as it does stunning food and drinks.
both on the plate and in our mouths. Having
La Fontana owner Denis Fontana
Denis tells the pizza chef to prepare a classic margherita pie for us. Within five minutes the dough’s been rolled, topped, and baked. Final flourishes of fresh basil, olive oil, and sea salt complete the process. Chris and I are each offered
We help you better “get” real estate, so you can get better real estate.
a slice and, with the first bite, melt into our own personal heavens. ‘The secret’s in the dough,’ Denis tells us. ‘We cold ferment it – a process of rising and resting – for sixty hours. And if you come to my pizza-making classes,’ he adds with a laugh, ‘you can get the recipe.’ And he’s right – the dough truly is fantastic. Fluffy on the inside with a crunchy shell and beautiful charring on the crust. When the three of us head back outside to our table, Denis points out a small vegetable garden featuring heirloom tomatoes and a selection of herbs – all of which are incorporated into the restaurant’s seasonal dishes. We settle in at our table once more, to savour the last slices of pizza – and accept more dishes and drinks from our server as they arrive, seemingly spontaneously, from the kitchen. A charcuterie board with a house selection
of homemade pickled vegetables, meats, and cheeses; a wild boar belly dish with soy glaze, celery root, carrot slaw, and gooseberry; a bottle of Nero D'Avola from Sicily. ‘I think the boar is my favourite dish so far,’ I tell Chris and Denis as we stare out at the Grand River. The sun is setting – transforming the landscape into some sort of ethereal realm. ‘The celery root puree is phenomenal,’ adds Chris as he loads up the perfect forkful with boar, puree, gooseberry, and slaw. ‘And,’ he continues, ‘the meat. So tender.’ After a while Denis excuses himself, leaving Chris and me to finish up our meal to a chorus of crickets and frogs. A refreshing breeze pours off the river. I finish my last sip of wine as I watch the swans drift
by, and bask in the beauty that surrounds us. I am
grateful for nights like this. For this great company, memorable food, and an enchanting venue.
A perfect summer evening
LA FONTANA 15 E MILL ST, ELORA
519.590.0579 email@example.com wattyway.ca
REALTY SOUTHWESTERN ONTARIO LIMITED, BROKERAGE
ESTABLISHED NEIGHBOURHOODS IRREPLACEABLE REAL ESTATE
A C O U PL E O F L OVERS SH ARI NG TH EI R F AVOU R IT E SAT U R DAY DAY T R IP AR OU N D T H E R E G I O N .
BECKY & ARDIN LALUI, RESTAURANTEURS THE FRIENDLY SOCIETY, ELORA
When Becky and Ardin aren’t running their gorgeously-appointed downtown Elora gastropub, they’re likely out and about – scouring the region (and beyond) for inspiration. Recently they were kind enough to share what an ideal Saturday daytrip looks like for them. Follow along – and then try it yourself.
E LO R A FAR ME R S’ MARKET BISSELL PARK (127 E MILL ST), ELORA
1. A great Saturday morning begins with homemade omelettes on our balcony that overlooks the Grand
T HE E LO R A ME R C ANTI LE 58 GEDDES ST #1, ELORA
River. For ingredients we walk to the Market where we grab local tomatoes, peppers, and onions from TJ of Hoppy Fields Farm. We then hit up The Mercantile for Quebec cheeses and French butter before heading back home to cook and eat.
C O U N T RY ANTIQ UE S T OR E 6595 LINE 86, ELMIRA
Once we’ve finished our leisurely breakfast, Ardin
and I drive across our region’s gorgeous countryside to Country Antiques. We love this business’ eclectic, fun vibe. I hunt through the place, which offers everything from old mirrors to church pews, and pick out a few reasonably-priced antique frames for home.
S HA D Y L ANE GR E E NHO USE & P E R EN N IALS 6158 WEISENBERG RD, WEST MONTROSE
Next up, we head to Shady Lane nursery – a real
hidden treasure of our region where the greenery is always healthy and the price is always fantastic. When you visit, look out for the resident peacocks. And be sure to bring cash or cheque, because no cards are accepted here.
E LO R A BR E WING C O MPANY 107 GEDDES ST, ELORA
With our newly-purchased baskets of green bounty
securely stored in the car, we beeline back to Elora to drop our morning finds. We then meander up the block to our local brewery for lunch. It’s our regular haunt for lots of reasons. Great staff. Delicious food. Fantastic drinks. And a street-side patio perfect for people watching. To satisfy our keto diets, we grab the burger (sans bun), a Caesar salad, and a couple ciders.
5. From here, we can head in one of two directions: either S ON N E N HILL B R E WING 20727 HEART LAKE RD, CALEDON VILLAGE
to Sonnen Hill Brewing in Caledon for farmland pasture and fresh pale beer with mixed-culture fermentations, or to Two Faces wine bar in downtown Guelph for fantasticallycurated wines and the Royal City’s killer downtown vibes.
T W O FAC E S 20 WILSON ST, GUELPH
We opt for the sunny drive to Sonnen Hill, where we grab bottles of ‘Lil Spiffy’ oak-aged saison and ‘Oh Me Oh My’ hoppy pale ale.
6. It’s mid-afternoon, and time to choose a dinner spot. A favourite of ours is Bhimas in Waterloo. Unassuming on
B H IM A S WAR UNG 262 KING ST N, WATERLOO
the outside yet fascinatingly-eccentric on the inside, this destination mixes southeast Asian with European flavours for the most divine dishes. We don't take long to order; Ardin chooses the slow braised pork shoulder, while I select the muscovy duck magret. And good wine, of course.
E LO R A MILL HO TE L & SPA 77 W MILL ST, ELORA
7. Dinner’s over, but we’re far from ready for bed. We drive back to Elora, park the car, and walk the block from our apartment to the Elora Mill. We’re so lucky to have such a world-class establishment located in our own backyard. We settle in on the outdoor patio – literally feet from the rushing waters of the Elora Gorge – for post-dinner snacks and cocktails. We split the chilled lobster and carrot salad, and Ardin orders a negroni while I stick with wine. We smile, and sigh.
G R AND GO UR ME T 42 W MILL ST, ELORA
8. It’s time for bed. As we mosey home along West Mill Street, I find myself window shopping. I stop outside Grand Gourmet and fix on all the neat stuff the boutique sells that goes with food. Lovely pepper grinders. Beautiful tea towels. Emile Henry cookware. The list goes on. I make a note to myself to come back tomorrow for serving dishes. As soon as we arrive back home, I slip off my shoes and, before I know it, Ardin and I fall fast asleep to the sounds of the river rushing by.
I love this region – a place we are so happy to call home
DAYTRIP, TAG & POST!
@TOQUELTD #TOQUEDT #TOQUEDAYTRIPPING
Main Street patios on a Saturday afternoon
D OW NT OW N C AMB R I DG E :
A SLICE OF EUROPE RIGHT HERE AT HOME WORDS & PHOTOS BY CHRIS TIESSEN
‘Visiting Downtown Cambridge always
the urban landscapes of so many European
reminds me of traveling in Europe,’ I remark
cities whose rivers punctuate their own
to my fiancée, Liz, as I guide the TOQUE
Tacoma across the Grand River along the Main Street Bridge. To our left, about half a
But, on this sunny Saturday afternoon in early
kilometre downriver, the Cambridge Mill – all
July, it’s what’s straight ahead of us that’s
quarried stone and glass – stands tall beside
got us most excited: Main Street, blocked off
the water. To our right, just metres from the
at either end, converted into a pedestrian
bridge, the Old Post Office – with its chunky
thoroughfare. ‘Look at all the people,’ Liz
romanesque architecture and impressive
says excitedly, ‘and all the patios.’ Indeed, the
new addition – rises from the banks. Behind
entire street recalls some faraway piazza with
us, the spire of Central Presbyterian – all
children running here and there, and couples
gothic and pointy – kisses the sky. And below,
window shopping, and groups of old men
underneath the bridge, the river itself – the
enjoying beers whilst seated around tables
lifeblood of so many of the communities that
shaded by large, colourful umbrellas.
make up our region – rushes past, echoing Evocative of Europe, indeed.
Thirteen Food & Beverage
We turn right on Water Street South and find
focused bowls and superfood smoothies;
a parking spot directly opposite EVO Kitchen.
The Elixir Bistro, promoting draught beer and
As Liz and I begin the short jaunt back to
pizza; The Local Option, featuring its weekend
the pedestrian mecca of Main Street, I take
waffles, and more. Liz and I opt for a seat on
a moment to admire the re-purposed old
the large sidewalk patio at Thirteen Food &
factory that now houses this swanky event
Beverage. Before long, we’re deep into a plate
and culinary spot. I note EVO’s side patio –
of ‘Korean Fried Chicken Tacos’ (slaw, Korean
all cheerful and snug and roofed with some
BBQ sauce, chipotle lime crema, pickled red
sort of creeping vine. ‘Let’s make sure to stop
onion), a ‘Local 13 Power Bowl’ (mixed greens,
there for apps and drinks later,’ I suggest. Liz
quinoa, feta, charred corn, diced tomato, red
nods in agreement. This is going to be a great
onion, edamame, red wine vinaigrette, miso-
tofu mayo drizzle), and a couple of drinks. For Liz – a classic Caesar. For me – a ‘Black Cherry
Once we arrive at Main Street, we discover
Daquiri’ slush cocktail.
that there are plenty of options for lunch. There’s The Healthy Rabbit, with its plant-
This whole Main Street vibe is soul-stirring and has me thinking of summer trips to
The patio at EVO Kitchen
Drinks at EVO Kitchen
Apps & drinks at EVO Kitchen
27 Rome and Paris, Munich and Kraków, and
back, the patio is serene, cozy, romantic.
any of the other European cities where I’ve
The aforementioned creeping vines keep us
spent summer days enjoying myself on patios
cool and protected from the afternoon sun,
evocative of this one, on pedestrian streets
while the menu has me finding room in my
reminiscent of this one. Indeed, all that’s
stomach even after our recent meal on Main.
missing is the ubiquitous European smells of
Liz and I decide to split the ‘Crispy Pork Belly’
cigarette smoke and diesel fumes.
(spicy tamarind sauce, scallions, roasted sesame seeds) and ‘Fresh Rainbow Spring
Once we’ve polished off our meals (I highly
Rolls’ (mango, carrot, cabbage, cucumber, red
recommend the power bowl and slush
pepper, cilantro, lettuce, thai peanut sauce),
cocktail), Liz and I dilly dally up Main Street
order a couple of cocktails (a Strawberry
toward Ainslie. Within a four-block radius,
Mule for Liz and Whiskey Sour for myself) and
there are so many shops we could visit.
spend the next hour or so just celebrating
Phidon Pens for posh writing supplies.
being here. This is what visiting Downtown
Witty & Co for wonderfully-curated culinary
Cambridge in the summer is all about:
treats. Reid’s Chocolates for locally-crafted
soaking in the spectacular architecture, river
sweets. Art of Home for lifestyle items.
views, shops, patios, and everything else that
Monigram Coffee Roasters for some of the
has me waxing nostalgic about pre-pandemic
best espresso-based drinks in the region. But
right now we’re on a mission: to check out
that patio at EVO. Once we arrive, we’re not
In Downtown Cambridge – where Europe’s in
Stretching the length of the building and expanding into a much larger space out
Summertime is hot dog time. And while we might embrace the practice of bbqing a few wieners on the backyard grill as a seasonal rite of passage, there’s always the option of grabbing a dog while you’re on the go. Over the past weeks, the TOQUE team scoured the region for culinary destinations that are serving up some of the best – and most distinctive – hot dogs around. All in the name of research.
E A S TER BR O O K ’ S 694 SP R ING G AR D E N R D , BU R L ING T O N EA ST E R B R OOKS. C A
ON E TWELV E- INCH ‘CHICAGO SLIDER ’ (A GED C HED DAR, ONION, HOT PEPPER, TO MA T O ), A TWE LV E- INCH ‘WONDER DOG’ (M EL T E D C HEESE, BACON, FRIED ONION, TO MA T O ) AN D AN ORDER OF FRIES. SERV ED WI T H VANI LLA AND CHOCOLATE PEANUT BU T T E R S HAK ES.
L E C HIE N C HA U D 1 3 0 M ETC A LF E S T, ELO R A TH EEVELY N R ES TA U R A N T. C O M
‘ T H E D O BER MA N ’ (S A U E R KR A U T , CO L E S L A W, EBC D U N KE L BE ER MU S T A R D , P R E T ZEL S , BU T T ER T O A S T ED BU N ), ‘ T H E S A T A Y’ (S P I CY P E A N U T KE T CH U P , CH I L I CU CU MBER R E L I S H , CI L A N T R O , R O A S T E D P E A N U T S , BU T T E R T O A S T ED BU N ) A N D O R D E R S O F P O T A T O S A L A D & CO L ES L A W. S ER VE D WI T H CA N S O F EL O R A ’ S A U S T R A L I S I P A & O BS KU R A D I P A .
W A L L Y P A RR S A U S A G E 2 K I N G S T W , H A M I LTO N W A LLY P A R R . C O M
A S A U S A GE O N WH I T E (S A U E R KR A U T , P I CKL E S , KE T CH U P ) A N D O N E O N WH O L E WH EA T (P I CKL ES , MA YO , YEL L O W MU S T A R D ). ‘ N U F F S A I D . FUN FACT: with locations in Burlington, Guelph, Caledonia, and Steeltown, Wally Parr’s got you covered.
THE G O O D DO G C O 2 5 3 K I N G S T N , W A TER LO O TH EG O O D D O G C O . C A
‘ T H E BBQ CH I CKE N ’ (BBQ CH I C K E N S T R I P S , S P I CY KET CH U P , MA YO , G R E E N O N I O N ) & ‘ T H E H O T T ER O N E ’ ( SPIC Y MO ZZA R EL L A , J A L A P EN O S , R ED O N IO N , CO L E S L A W, S R I R A CH A , MA YO ) . SE R V E D WI T H BO T T L E S O F GI N GE R BE E R & K O L A CH A MP A GN E .
RO C KY’S DRIVE -IN 5 2 0 ELI Z A B ETH S T, G U ELP H 519-824-8088
A CO U P L E O F T WEL VE - I N CH D O GS ‘ WI T H T H E WO R KS ’ (R EL I S H , O N I O N , T O MA T O ) A N D A R EQ U I S I T E O R D ER O F F R I ES . S E R VE D WI T H BO T T L ES O F R O O T BEER & CO L A . FUN FACT: this seasonal Royal City establishment has been slingin’ foot-long dogs since 1951.
Luxury • Authentic • Resale
Waterloo Region’s only luxury resale boutique. Where authenticity is always guaranteed. 640 King St. East, Cambridge ON (Preston Town Centre)
519-212-6824 | www.luxetouchconsignment.com
It’s your life. Taste it.
60 Mill St West, Elora • 519-829-8656
MEET YOUR MAKER
A S A R ES U L T O F T H E P A N D EM I C ’S D EC I M A T I ON OF O U R C U L I N A R Y I N D U STRY, 38
ZACHARY STACHYRA @lithoprestaurant
T H ER E A R E C U R R EN T L Y MA N Y C H EF S W I T H O U T R ES T A U R A N T S T O C A L L H O ME. S O W H A T T O D O ? G U EL P H - B A S ED C HEF
YOU R C OOKI N G S T Y LE ? Nouvelle cuisine – stressing
Z A C H A R Y S T A C H Y R A D EC I D ED T O G O
freshness, lightness, and clarity of
O U T O N H I S OW N – C U R A T I N G I N -
H O U S E D I N N ER S F O R C L I EN T S A C R O SS
F AV E I NGRED I E N T( S ) TO CO O K
T H E R EG I O N . H A V I N G W O R KED A T S UCH
D ES T I N A T I O N S A S L A N G D ON H A L L
Fresh seafood – especially shellfish, lobster, and scallops
( C A M B R I D G E) , T H E B ER L I N ( KI T C H EN ER),
M OS T I M POR TA N T K I T CH E N
EN O T EC A S OC I A L E ( T OR O N T O ) A N D 7
T OOL (S )?
EN O T EC A / H EX A G ON ( O A KV I L L E) , Z A C H’S NO
S ous vide, smoke, vacuum sealers & liquid nitrogen
S L O U C H I N T H E KI T C H EN . N EED F U R T HER
RE GI ONAL PI C K ( S ) F O R A G O O D
P R O O F ? J U S T L OO K A T H I S F O O D . I T ’S ART
T I M E?
O N A P L A T E. P ER I O D . N OW A L L T H A T ’S
Breakfast from Clementine Catering, the Baker Street Station
L EF T T O D O I S H I R E H I M F O R Y OU R NEXT
patio, and Loloan Lobby Bar for
G A T H ER I N G A N D T A S T E W H A T Y OU ’R E
S EEI N G . Y OU ’L L T H A N K U S . A N D H I M .
PHOTOS SUBMITTED BY ZACHARY STACHYRA
We pride ourselves on being local experts.
We know the perfect neighbourhood,
the perfect street, the perfect home, for each of our clients. And there’s one thing we know you’ll find in every neighbourhood: great food. Talented chefs, brewers, bakers, farmers and entrepreneurs are the heart of our community, and sharing nourishing food with our friends & family is our favourite way to show our love. We are fiercely loyal to our local restaurants & shops, because we support what supports us.
Jess Poland FAVOURITE SPOT: Coco Chicken GO-TO ORDER: Sweet & Spicy Dark Meat Chicken Sandwich with Asian Slaw for me, Popcorn Chicken & Waffle Fries for the kids! BEST ENJOYED: When you’re very hungry... the portions are huge!
Ryan Waller FAVOURITE SPOT: The Wooly Pub GO-TO ORDER: The YU Beef Traditional Burger (with jalapenos) and a cold pint of Welly SPA – can’t beat the classics! BEST ENJOYED: On their back patio
Irene Szabo FAVOURITE SPOT: Piatto Pizzeria + Enoteca GO-TO ORDER: The Stephanie (EVOO base, goat cheese, prosciutto crackle, caramelized pear & balsamic) BEST ENJOYED: When you’re craving a simply amazing meal – the 900 degree wood oven bakes them to perfection!
WE ARE GUELPH REALTORS®. WE ARE FOODIES.
Luke McKenzie FAVOURITE SPOT: Hungry Ninja GO-TO ORDER: Tuna Poke Bowl, with double tuna, extra edamame & their Spicy Ninja Sauce BEST ENJOYED: When you’re craving sushi but on the run! Fast, fresh & always delicious.
Jennifer Lovsin FAVOURITE SPOT: Romero’s Mediterranean & Italian GO-TO ORDER: Hot & Spicy Linguine BEST ENJOYED: With great friends, a glass of wine & the exceptional service at Romero’s
Lise Anne Janis FAVOURITE SPOT: Mijidaa Cafe + Bistro GO-TO ORDER: Meat + Cheese Board, with a glass of Rosé BEST ENJOYED: On a lazy afternoon spent on their secret back patio
Aidan Forsythe FAVOURITE SPOT: Polestar Hearth GO-TO ORDER: Harvest loaf and a brewed coffee BEST ENJOYED: Toasted with local honey, as a sweet reward for an early morning walk to the bakery
W E A R E F I E R C E LY L O C A L .
END Elora Brewing Company ELORA, 30km
End of Cottontail Road Trail, 27.64km
Turn off for Cottontail Road Trail, 14.62km
Start of Kissing Bridge Trail, 4.15km
START Fixed Gear Brewing Co GUELPH, 0km
BE ER T O BE E R:
CYCLING FROM FIXED GEAR BREWING TO ELORA BREWING COMPANIES WORDS & PHOTOS BY CHRIS TIESSEN
‘This sure beats our regular morning ‘zoom’ meetings, eh?,’ I grunt to my TOQUE Partner, Cai Sepulis, as we cycle up the rail trail just past Ariss. She nods in agreement and then, with a determined smile on her face, drops the hammer to catch up with her wife, Sonia, and my fiancée, Liz, who are biking together about fifty yards ahead. I coast serenely for a few seconds, giving my burning thighs a break and allowing Michael Oosterveld, Fixed Gear Brewing Company owner, to pedal up beside me. ‘This is incredible,’ he shouts gleefully as we roll up the trail together. ‘What a way to spend a Monday.’ I can’t disagree.
46 The patio at Fixed Gear Brewing Co’s Alma St location
It’s early July, just past noon, and the five
(Hamilton), Ryan is settled back here in our
of us are traversing the Kissing Bridge
community as Head Chef at the brewery in
Trailway towards the Cotton Tail Trail
Elora. Great news for local foodies, to be sure.
Road somewhere between Ariss and West Montrose. Our plotted destination: Elora Brewing Company for lunch and pints. ‘And not just any pints,’ I tell Michael – my voice filled with equal parts exuberance and triumph. ‘We’re going to be drinking ‘Friends Forever’ pale ale – Elora’s annual summertime collaboration brew with TOQUE.’ And the food has me almost as excited as our collab beer. ‘And tasting Chef Ryan Goodfellow’s new menu, too.’ Indeed, it’s been a hot minute since the co-founder of Goodfellows Field to Fork (everyone’s favourite Rockwood bakery that’s since been shuttered) has graced this region with his culinary chops. With stints at Canoe (Toronto) and Murray’s Butcher Shop
It's been a few hours now since we set out on this adventure from Michael’s brewery, Fixed Gear, located in Guelph’s Junction neighbourhood. It’s really no surprise we chose Mike’s place as starting line. Fixed Gear, after all, has always held a special place in the TOQUE team’s hearts – not least because our business branded the place. (Just look at those cans.) And also because of Fixed Gear’s Alma Street patio. Honestly, if there’s a more killer spot in the area to drink cold pints on a hot summer day, I’ve yet to find it. The aesthetic and vibe of the place are defined by the vintage Land Rover and classic Airstream trailer parked outside,
Adapt Coffee at Fixed Gear Brewing Co
Crossing the tracks just north of Woodlawn Rd in Guelph
open shipping containers that serve as a
As we cycle down the gravel rail trail,
protective perimeter around the space (and
farmland defines the horizon in every
double as rainy day seating too), and raised
direction – fields of maturing corn and
wooden decks and framework holding up
golden wheat, and meandering herds of
canvas sun shades. With its artificial turf
cattle as far as the eye can see. Once we turn
‘infield’ decorated with minimalist furniture
off the Kissing Bridge Trail to begin the last
and retro jukebox, Fixed Gear’s patio is like
leg of our journey along the Cottontail Trail
an oasis wrapped in an oasis. Not to mention
Road (which, in truth, is mostly road with
the fact that there’s a second Airstream set
very little trail) into Elora, we cycle uphill and
up just outside the space where Adapt Coffee
down, past Homer Watson-esque landscapes
serves up terrific espresso-based drinks that
and, finally, for the last couple kilometres,
beautifully complement Fixed Gear’s brews.
along tree-covered double track into town.
It was on that Fixed Gear patio where we began – enjoying espressos and americanos and pints of ‘Trackstand’ APA (a new recipe and now favourite alternative to Elora’s ‘Borealis’ and Bellwoods’ ‘Jutsu’). Before long we had readied our bikes for the ride ahead. And then we set out together – in great spirits for what lay ahead. And now we’re here, somewhere between Ariss and West Montrose.
We pedal across the newly-rebuilt Metcalfe Street bridge – with magnificent views of East Mill Street shops and apartments (with their quarried stone structures and multi-storey balconies and pristinely-mismatched peaked roofs) and, further along, Elora’s famed ‘Tooth of Time’ and the Elora Mill – and up the Metcalfe Street hill until, where Metcalfe meets Geddes Street, we arrive at the Elora Brewing Company.
Taking a break on the Kissing Bridge Trailway
Details along the Cottontail Trail Road
Elora Brewing Co Head Chef Ryan Goodfellow
‘Your table’s ready,’ chimes brewery host Taylor as we lean our bikes on the patio’s wooden perimeter fencing. The five of us eagerly grab seats at a shaded six-seater picnic-style table and place initial orders for cold water and even colder beer – the aforementioned ‘Friends Forever’ for four of us and, for Sonia, a pint of Elora’s newlyreleased ‘Mouth Party’ raspberry hard seltzer. Brewery co-owner Jon Laurencic (who was going to come along on our pilgrimage but had to cancel last minute) joins us at our table for a beer – which is fitting. After all, it was Jon who helped spearhead the ‘Friends Forever’ collab beer project between Elora and TOQUE – and who helped name the brew as an ode to the close relationship between our business and his. The beer doesn’t disappoint. ‘Reminds me of Bellwoods’ ‘Roman Candle’ IPA,’ I remark between sips. Which, in everyone’s mind, fits – and is a very good thing.
Food & drinks at the Elora Brewing Company
It’s not long before our table is filled with plates of food to complement the drinks and we’re sharing orders of ‘Arancini’ (fried balls of rice coated in breadcrumbs stuffed with cheese and tomato sauce on a bed of micro basil and arugula, with preserved lemon aioli), ‘Burattini’ (buratta with smoked cherry tomatoes and pickled fennel topped with micro herbs and olive oil, on a bed of arugula, served with sourdough crostini), and ‘Polenta Frites’ (grand Padano and fresh herbs, topped with toasted pepitas and micro herbs, with ramp arugula pesto and truffle aioli). And devouring personal orders of the ‘EBC Burger’ (arugula, pickled shallots and white cheddar, with roast tomato jam and tartar sauce) and the ‘Chicken Sandwich’ (brined buttermilk thigh with Boston bibb lettuce and sliced pickles, with chipotle aioli). We spend a couple hours at the brewery – people watching, talking shop, settling into the afternoon. Over time, Jon returns to work. Liz leaves to pick up her son, Ricky. Cai and Sonia pack their bikes into Cai’s TOQUE truck – which they strategically left at the brewery the night before. And Michael and I get on our bikes to begin the ride back home. During the trek, we may or may not stop on a bench along the Kissing Bridge Trailway to crack open a couple ‘Friends Forever’ travel buddies. Who’s to say. What’s certain, though, is that this has been a helluva fun day.
A very good way to spend a Monday, indeed
FIXED GEAR BREWING CO. 20 ALMA ST S, GUELPH
ELORA BREWING COMPANY 107 GEDDES ST, ELORA
UNCOVERING WELLINGTON COUNTY
PFISTERER FARM 54
When first-generation farmers Jess and Ryan Pfisterer decided to create an Airbnb glamping experience nestled in the woods on their one hundred-acre farm (located just outside Damascus ON), they weren’t sure how it would be received. It didn’t take long to find out. ‘Before we’d even opened for overnight guests,’ Jess relates, ‘blogTO published a piece on the place. Within days, we were booked for almost the entire season.’ It’s no surprise. Replete with emperor bell tent that sleeps six, solar generator, fire pit, bbq and more (including a real queen bed), Pfisterer Farm’s glamping experience isn’t one you’ll soon forget. Think about it: farm tours included, trails and lakes nearby, and the picturesque towns of Arthur and Grand Valley just down the way. Not up for an overnight stay? Then why not sign up for Pfisterer’s Chicken
CSA (which includes a monthly box of pasture-raised chicken, from the farm to your table) or shop their online farm store for free-range eggs, grass-fed beef and pork, and seasonal products too. Like so many other remarkable farms and food businesses that dot Guelph and Wellington County, Pfisterer Farm is a partner of Taste Real – a County of Wellington program that promotes local food and facilitates valuable connections among food businesses, consumers, and farmers alike. Farmers like Jess and Ryan Pfisterer – folks whose enterprise brings beauty (and bounty) to our lives. Learn more at pfistererfarm.com and tastereal.ca
WELLING T O N C O U NT Y F A R M ER S’ M A R K E T T R A I L Go on a local food Farmers’ Market Trail
adventure and explore Guelph and Wellington County’s vibrant farmers’ markets this summer. Each market showcases the unique tastes and
flavours of its community and offers visitors a gateway to explore
Your guide to exploring Wellington County Farmers’ Markets
beautiful towns and rural www.tastereal.ca
Pick up your FARMERS’ MARKET TRAIL PASSPPORT and collect stickers each time you visit a market for a chance to win one of seven market prize packs. Aberfoyle Farmers’ Market | afma.ca Saturdays | 8:00 am - 1:00 pm May 29 – October 30 23 Brock Road South, Aberfoyle Elora Farmers’ Market | elorafarmersmarket.ca Saturdays | 9:00 am - 1:00 pm May 22 – October 30 127 East Mill Street, Elora (at Bissel Park) Erin Farmers’ Market | erinfarmersmarket.ca Fridays | 3:00 pm - 7:00 pm June 25 – September 24 109 Main Street, Erin at McMillan Park Guelph Farmers’ Market | guelph.ca/farmersmarket Saturdays | 7:00 am - 12:00 pm Year round Gordon Street at Waterloo Avenue, Guelph Mapleton Farmers’ Market |mapleton.ca Third Wednesday of the month | 4:00 pm - 7:00 pm June 16 – September 15 11 Main Street West, Drayton (at Drayton Municipal Parking Lot)
Minto Farmers’ Market | mintofarmersmarket.ca Saturdays | 9:00 am - 12:00 pm June 5 - September 25 164 William Street, Palmerston (at Palmerston Railway Heritage Museum)
Rockwood Farmers’ Market therockwoodfarmersmarket.ca Wednesdays | 4:00 pm - 7:00 pm June 9 - October 6 120 Rockmosa Drive, Rockwood (behind Rockmosa Community Centre)
Wellington North Farmers’ Market | simplyexplore.ca Saturdays | 8:30 am - 12:00 pm June 19 - September 25 320 King Street East, Mount Forest (at Victory Community Centre)
TASTE REAL LOCAL FOOD MAP Pick up a copy of the newest Guelph-Wellington Local Food Map and explore local food this summer. Find
FARMERS’ MARKET BOXES Get a curated selection of farmers’ markets goodies delivered to your doorstep this summer and fall. A different Wellington County or Guelph Market is featured every two weeks. For more info and to order your box(es) see tastereal.ca
participating locations at tastereal.ca
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MAST E RS OF W I N E :
DROPPING KNOWLEDGE THE TOQUE TEAM KNOWS ITS CRAFT BEER – NOT SO MUCH ITS WINE. WHAT TO DO? WE GATHERED THREE OF OUR REGION’S WINE PERSONALITIES AND ASKED THEM ALL ABOUT THE STUFF. LISTEN IN.
‘EITHER GIVE ME MORE WINE OR LEAVE ME ALONE.’ - RUMI
WE S K LA S S E N , O W NE R O F P U R P LE T E E T H CO NSU LT ING & T HIR ST Y WINE CLU B purpleteethconsulting.com @purpleteethconsulting
WES KLASSEN IS A WINE SOMMELIER, WINE CONSULTANT, AND CRAZY CAT. HE’S ALSO THE PROPRIETOR OF PURPLE TEETH CONSULTING AND THIRSTY WINE CLUB. WHEN WE ASKED WES WHAT HE THINKS WHEN HE THINKS ABOUT WINE, HERE'S WHAT HE SAID: WHAT’S UP WITH PURPLE TEETH CONSULTING?
WHAT’S YOUR DREAM BOTTLE? AND WITH WHOM WOULD YOU DRINK IT?
Purple Teeth is all about making wine education
It’s gotta be a bottle of Jean Louis Chave Hermitage
accessible for everyone. It’s about getting rid of
Rhône Red from 1982 – my birth year. I love Syrah
the perceived pretension of wine culture. Wine
and what it does when it matures. I would force my
shouldn’t be something that frightens folks – it
best bud to cook something and I'd drink it with
should be something that excites them. That’s
him, his wife, and my wife.
what Purple teeth does.
AND TH IRSTY WINE CLUB – WHAT’S THAT?
AND ADVICE FOR THOSE LOOKING TO GET INTO WINE? Have fun with it. Wine can be so serious. Do I swirl?
It’s a monthly showcase of all the good things the
Doesn’t matter. What words to describe this wine?
wine world is offering – delivered to your door.
Whatever. Just be yourself. Drink what you like.
And it’s highly customizable; members’ wines, for
We've got all our lives to keep discovering new
example, can be paired with menu items from
flavours, so go explore. If you're wondering where
local take-outs, grocers, cheesemongers, butchers.
to start, begin with something like a wine club. Like
Really, when you join the club the world becomes
Thirsty Wine Club. Shameless plug.
DO YOU RECALL THE FIRST GREAT BOTTLE YOU TASTED?
WHAT’S AN AFFORDABLE BOTTLE THAT CHECKS ALL THE MARKS? Tough question. Wine is very subjective. Having
I definitely tried a lot of great bottles in the three
said this, Spanish and Portuguese wines are
years I spent as a Sommelier at Langdon Hall.
fantastic – and really overdeliver for the price
Guests would regularly bring wine in from their
private cellars. A 1924 Chateau Mouton-Rothschild shook me up. Just tasting a wine from such an esteemed producer blew my mind.
AND THE BEST PAIRING? Unless I’m pairing for dinner or writing suggested food partners for wine club, I keep it pretty basic.
AND WHAT’S THE BEST BOTTLE YOU’VE EVER HAD THE PLEASURE OF DRINKING?
Cheese is always good. Like wine, it’s a living
A recent great bottle was a 2014 Coteaux Du
works. Like a Chenin Blanc from Vouvray paired
Giennois from Hervé Villemade – a Gamay/Pinot
with a veg ash-covered Loire goat cheese Valençay.
blend from Loire, France. It was pure pleasure with
Or some tasty Mencia, a Northwestern Spanish
so much fruit, spice, and fresh herbed notes. The
grape with notes of dried plums, herbs, and coffee,
paired with cured meats and herb-encrusted
organism that’s got history and variety on its side. Also, ‘what grows together goes together’ usually
sheep's milk cheeses.
M E G A LFOR D , B A R O W NE R AT T WO FACE S twofacesbar.com @twofacesbar
MEG ALFORD IS THE PROPRIETOR OF TWO FACES – A COZY WINE BAR IN DOWNTOWN GUELPH THAT’S GOT A TERRIFIC SELECTION OF BIODYNAMIC AND ORGANIC WINES, CRAFT BEERS, AND NIBBLIES TOO. A FEW WEEKS BACK WE ASKED MEG ABOUT HER BAR AND ABOUT WINE IN GENERAL. HERE’S WHAT SHE TOLD US:
HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE TWO FACES?
WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO SOMEONE LOOKING TO GET INTO WINE?
Back to basics. A classic family-run wine bar. And a
Start tasting. It's the only way to actually learn.
nice place to drink.
Reading is great but unless you try something it
WHO ARE THE BAR’S TYPICAL CLIENTS? Honestly everyone. On an average night I can look
won't stick. Travelling is great too – when we're able to again.
Some are really into wine and some just like the
WHAT’S THE BEST BOTTLE YOU’VE HAD THE PLEASURE OF DRINKING?
atmosphere. There's also a crowd who only drink
It was when I was travelling in Sicily with Drea and
Miller High Life.
my husband. We drove to Mt Etna and were invited
around and see people of so many different ages.
WHEN DID YOU GET INTO WINE? I started tasting and serving wine when I worked in a hotel in Toronto serving film industry people. Trying to not shake while opening a bottle for some pretty well-known people was good training. It wasn't until opening Two Faces, though, that my love and knowledge for wine really grew. [Former Two Faces partner] Drea and I started tasting all the time while traveling together. It's been a fun journey.
AND WHAT ABOUT WINE MAKES YOU HAPPY? It connects me with so many different people – I would say that's by far the best part.
CAN YOU SUGGEST SOME GOOD, AFFORDABLE WINES? I would look to Ontario. There are a few places making great natural wine. Rosewood is great. Southbrook and Pearl Morissette, too. At the bar, we also have a really affordable Prosecco and Côtes du Rhône that are classics.
to a small estate. Along the way, we spotted many tiny plots along the mountain – some with soil so black it looked charred and others just minutes away with soil that was bright orange. It was wild. Afterwards, we visited the winery – a dark stone cave-like cellar with bottles lining the cold walls. There were two Kvevri [buried clay vessels used for fermentation and aging]. We tried a wine made from this method. It was the Vino di Anna CR and it was so special. When he tried it, my husband started to cry and I've only seen him cry at the birth of my sons. We'll be getting this wine very soon at the bar.
AND YOUR DREAM BOTTLE? AND WHO WOULD YOU DRINK IT WITH? A bottle of Champagne with Drea any day.
WHEN DO YOU CHOOSE RED OR WHITE? Honestly, I love them both equally and switch back and forth day to day. Weather doesn't influence my choice. I think there are great white wines to enjoy in the winter and chilled reds that are great for summer. And rosé all the time.
AND YOUR FAVOURITE PAIRING? In true Two Faces’ fashion – Prosecco and Truffle chips.
DA VI D LOB E , P A R T NE R A T ME ANWHILE WINE meanwhilewineclub.com @meanwhilewineclub @davidlobe.wine
DAVID LOBE, DIPWSET, IS A PARTNER AT MEANWHILE WINE AND ALL-ROUND RENAISSANCE MAN. A FEW WEEKS AGO, WE MANAGED TO CATCH UP WITH DAVE (AND HIS CLASSIC 1962 MGB) TO TALK WINE. AS YOU’LL SEE, HE WAS A FONT OF KNOWLEDGE: CAN YOU TELL US A BIT ABOUT YOUR BUSINESS?
WHAT’S AN AFFORDABLE BOTTLE THAT CHECKS ALL THE MARKS?
Meanwhile Wine is a full-service wine concierge
Different regions have different base level values.
and consulting business that helps clients get
A cheap champagne is around fifty dollars,
the wines they want. We do cellar curation,
for instance, whereas a cheap cava is around
management, and construction for both private
ten bucks. Having said this, for me value and
and restaurant clients. We also offer private
affordability is always found in the Loire Valley. I
catering: Kyle Paton, Meanwhile partner, is
would recommend a bottle of Domaine de L'Ecu
a seasoned chef who has opened multiple
‘Orthogneiss’. For between thirty and forty dollars,
restaurants. A great place to start with Meanwhile
you get a wine that – if it were from Burgundy –
is to subscribe to our monthly wine club. We offer
would cost hundreds.
a variety of price points so no matter your budget, we can help. We connect with you, see what you like, and take it from there.
ANY ADVICE FOR THOSE JUST GETTING INTO WINE? Don't be intimidated. Ask questions and listen. It's
WHO WOULD YOU SAY ARE YOUR TYPICAL CLIENTS?
okay to like what you like. Allow sommeliers and
Our client base ranges from people just getting
as you can.
into wine to folks with large cellars seeking the finest Grand Cru Burgundy and First Growth Bordeaux. The key for us is getting to know our clients so we can help them find wines that elicit passion and excitement.
WHY IS WINE SO SPECIAL? Wine is bottled time and place. Being able to transport yourself to another time, and another part of the world, is pure magic. And wine’s a great investment too. Many wines are made in very small quantities and appreciate over time. If you’re into buying gold, silver, or bitcoin, you might consider investing in wine, too.
HOW DI D YOU GET INTO WINE? A couple decades ago I was in the wedding party of a close friend. Her dad was (and remains) a serious collector who opened my eyes to the wonders of fine wine. After he treated me to a 1977 Warre's port (first wine that shook me to my core), a 1975 Chateau Latour, and a 1970 Chateau Palmer, I was hooked.
wine professionals to help you. And read as much
WHAT ARE SOME OF THE BEST WINES YOU’VE TASTED? A 1978 Domaine de la Romanee Conti ‘RomaneeConti’ Grand Cru; 1961 Château Latour; 1920 Château Gruaud Larose; and 1985 Château Rayas.
AND YOUR DREAM BOTTLE? AND WHO WOULD YOU DRINK IT WITH? A 1971 Cantina Mascarello Barolo – enjoyed with Bartolo Mascarello (who’s sadly no longer with us), my wife Leanne, and my son Josh.
AND YOUR FAVOURITE PAIRING?
A Loire Valley Sauvignon Blanc with Loire Valley goat cheese. Perfection
Y RD REID
W I L L I B AL D ’ S B I E R G A R T E N : SVIL D LE R
MY FAVOURITE PLACE – AS IF ANYONE NEEDS REMINDING WORDS & PHOTOS BY CHRIS TIESSEN ‘I wonder whether Byron’s going to mind my
‘Just don’t be too weird about it,’ Cai tells
fanboying this time?,’ I ask my TOQUE partner
me. ‘We want to be able to come back.’ She’s
Cai Sepulis as I take a bite of my sandwich,
definitely got a point. Especially during these
‘because this is literally the best meal I’ve ever
pandemic times, when great places to eat
had.’ Cai just laughs at me. She’s heard this
seem to be in shorter supply than ever. I take
line before. Indeed, each time I frequent this
a swig of my pint – Willibald’s ‘Broken Galaxy’
place – Willibald Farm Distillery & Brewery – I
IPA – and then another bite of my sandwich:
say the same thing. Over and over. ‘Honestly,’
the Buffalo Chicken Ranch sammy (fried
I tell her (clapping our picnic table with my
chicken thigh, Martin’s potato bun, iceberg,
non-sandwich-holding hand, for added
pickles, ranch, buffalo sauce). The buffalo
emphasis), ‘I’m not joking. This is the best.
sauce and ranch play off each other perfectly
And when I’m finished my food, I’m heading
– leaving my mouth simultaneously tingling
straight to the kitchen to give Byron a hug –
with spice and cooled by ranch. ‘Have you
or at least a virtual one.’ Chef Byron Hallett:
tried the burger yet?,’ Cai asks, ‘because if you
Willibald’s culinary genius.
68 like the sandwich, the burger’s gonna blow
thinking you’re seeing double – or even triple
– right now. Indeed, we’ve written features on Willibald before. And given the place a
It’s a Friday afternoon in July, and Cai and I
cover, even. But, really, how can we not? After
are visiting Willibald to check out their most
all, what began as a craft distillery located in
recent addition: an expansive Biergarten tent.
the back forty of Waterloo Region (featured
Located in front of the Willibald buildings
in the inaugural issue of TOQUE) has since
proper (which includes the place’s craft
grown into a restaurant (see TOQUE 6), a
distillery and brewery, as well as a converted
craft brewery (see TOQUE 10.5), and now
barn that houses its indoor kitchen, bar,
an impressive outdoor dining and drinking
and dining room), the Biergarten hosts the
destination too. The place is ever-evolving.
flocks of Willibald fans who simply can’t live
Always building on its past successes. Not re-
without Byron’s food. Appointed with a make-
inventing itself, exactly, but certainly adding
shift bottle shop and merch area, and three
value for its devoted fanbase.
rows of picnic tables (each about ten tables deep), the space can accommodate a crowd.
Fans like Cai and me. So we settle in – again.
And more. Indeed, there are tables (painted
Cai orders a Pink Gin & Tonic (Willibald
bright yellow to match Willibald’s flawless old
Pink Gin, Fever Tree Aromatic tonic), while I
school Germanic-chic brand) in the farmer’s
indulge myself with an Orange Dreamsicle
field beyond the tent – just beside the herd
Slushy (fresh OJ, vanilla, oat milk, Willibald
of Galloway cattle (from Ayrsyde Farms) that
Vodka, lemon juice, simple syrup). Nostalgia
graze in the next field over.
in a glass, I think, as I put down my sandwich and grab my half of the Willy Burger (beef
Those of you who’ve been closely following our little rag since the beginning may be
smash patty, Martin’s potato bun, cheddar,
Photo by Cai Sepulis
onion ring, iceberg, pickles, burger sauce). It’s
everything I’d expect from Byron and his team – made even more mind-blowing by the fact that I can see the herd of Galloway that are used for the burger patty from my seat under the tent. And beyond the cattle, in the forest just past the field, are heritage breed hogs from Ayrsyde Farms. ‘Byron uses the pork to make the Cubano Sandwich,’ notes Willibald’s Brit Scott when she comes by the table to check on us. Ahh yes – the Cubano. House porchetta and smoked ham on house soft white bread, topped with pickles, swiss, pickled peppers and mustard aioli. Yup, having the farm right next door gives a whole new meaning to ‘farm to fork.' For the next hour or so, Cai and I dine in bliss. Besides the sandwich, burger, and Cubano, we also share an order of Kimchi Fries (hoisin mayo, scallions, sesame seeds) and a McCallister pizza (slow roasted tomato sauce, mozzarella, pizza parm). The fries are what
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I’d hoped for, while the pizza needs no introduction. Indeed, life is pretty much meaningless without Willibald pizza. Crafted in the same wood-fired oven that used to bless Preston’s City Café Bakery back in
the day, Willibald pizza may just be one of the seven wonders of our regional culinary scene. Really, Willibald’s Biergarten has to be experienced
f irst-rate services
to be believed. The fantastic selection of house (and guest) brews on tap; the cocktails; the rural landscape that literally surrounds the place; and Chef Byron Hallett’s cooking. As Cai and I get up to leave together, I break left and beeline to the kitchen. Byron sees me coming in hot from across the dining room and starts chuckling. No hugs today, I realize as I close the gap. COVID rules still apply, after all. But it’s okay. Byron
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can feel the love emanating from my eyes – and my bulging belly. We say our farewells, and I promise I’ll be back soon. Indeed, my love affair with this place – and the
Willibald team who make it happen – is far from over
WILLIBALD FARM DISTILLERY & RESTAURANT 1271 REIDSVILLE RD, AYR
and so much more!
Many Uptown businesses have made changes to their business practices during the pandemic and have opened in various ways to serve you. Thank you for making “local” a priority today and every day. @uptownwaterloo www.uptownwaterloobia.com
EST. 1892 - BERLIN, ON
482 BELMONT AVE W (AT GAGE) KITCHENER
IN TR O D U C I N G WEL L I NGT O N S PARKL ING HO P WAT E R:
HEN D ER R
IT’LL GO ANYWHERE YOU DO QUESTIONS & PHOTOS BY CHRIS TIESSEN; ANSWERS BY MARVIN DYCK
HAVE YOU EVER WANTED TO TASTE THE HOPPY GOODNESS OF YOUR FAVOURITE CRAFT BREW WITHOUT HAVING TO EXPERIENCE EVERYTHING ELSE (THE CALORIES, GLUTEN, ALCOHOL – AND SOMETIMES EVEN HANGOVER) THAT COMES WITH IT? THEN WELLINGTON BREWERY’S GOT WHAT YOU'RE LOOKING FOR: A REFRESHING AND BUBBLY HOPPY DRINK THAT YOU CAN ENJOY ON THE BEACH, AT THE OFFICE, AND EVEN WHILE DRIVING IN YOUR CAR. MAGIC, WE KNOW. AND STRIKINGLY DELECTABLE, TOO. A FEW WEEKS BACK, WE ASKED WELLY BREWMASTER MARVIN DYCK TO GIVE US THE LOWDOWN ON THE BREWERY'S MARVELOUS NEW CREATION. HERE’S WHAT HE HAD TO SAY:
Wellington brewmaster Marvin Dyck
CAN YOU TELL US A BIT ABOUT YOUR NEW HOP WATER? WHAT’S ALL THE HYPE ABOUT?
in water and tasting the result which was,
For sure. Our sparkling hop waters are meant
the opportunity to try Hoppy Refresher from
to be a healthy and refreshing non-alcoholic
Lagunitas brewery in the US and were blown
alternative to beer that anyone can enjoy
away with how tasty it was. Fast forward to
– anywhere, anytime. They shine a light on
about a year ago and we started messing
the lively citrus and bright pine flavours of
around with having carbonated water on tap
locally-grown Ontario hops without adding
for staff – sometimes adding various flavours.
any ‘natural’ flavours. What’s more, our hop
We tried adding some hops to the carbonated
waters have zero calories, zero carbs, and
water through a unique brewing process
zero percent alcohol. This all adds up to a
and it was an instant hit. It’s nice because it
drink that’s got a smooth mouthfeel balanced
has just a touch of bitterness which makes it
by a subtle hoppy bitterness.
WHERE DID YOU GET THE IDEA TO START BREWING HOP WATER?
HOW IS YOUR HOP WATER MADE? Our process is a bit more involved than just
At least five years back [at a Canadian
making carbonated water and then adding
Brewing Awards conference], our Marketing
hops. We actually brew our hop waters
Manager, Brad McInerney, asked me why we
in order to infuse the hops with brewers
couldn’t make hop water. I laughed at the
yeast. The yeast helps with a process called
idea initially – having already attempted my
biotransformation, which brings out a variety
own versions of ‘hop water’ by steeping hops
of flavours from the hops and gives the result
alas, an overly bitter and vegetal product. Not great. Then, a couple years back, we had
a more complex hop flavour profile.
ARE THERE MULTIPLE FLAVOURS OF HOP WATER? OR JUST ONE CORE DRINK? We currently have ‘Cascade’ and ‘Chinook’ versions of our sparkling hop water – representing two varieties of hops that are grown around the world. But, as terroir has an influence on hops as a crop, we chose to use cascade and chinook grown right here in Ontario at Hayhoe Hops in Aylmer. We wanted to showcase the distinctive taste of each of these unique Ontario-grown hops. The ‘Cascade’ version is more citrus-forward whereas ‘Chinook’ has berry and piney notes.
WHO’S THE IDEAL AUDIENCE FOR YOUR HOP WATER? When we first started brewing our hop water, we made it for ourselves and other staff who were interested – craft beer drinkers looking for a healthy ‘anytime’ alternative. In the beginning, our hop water was entirely in keg format and limited to our tap room. After some time, though, we decided to can some and let staff take a six-pack home to share with people. The feedback we got back was overwhelmingly positive, so we expanded it to a broader audience and have been enjoying the stories of who's drinking it, and why. Honestly, it’s being enjoyed by everyone from kids to pregnant
women to non-beer drinkers to craft beer enthusiasts looking for something different. It really is an ‘anytime, anywhere’ beverage – something you can enjoy with lunch, at work, on the beach, out boating, everywhere. The opportunities are endless. Since we designed it for our limited-space five hectolitre pilot system, we’ve been having trouble keeping it in stock. We now need to figure out a way to scale it up to our production brewhouse and size it to our larger tanks.
AND ANY FUTURE PLANS FOR THIS FANTASTIC NEW DRINK? We’ve spent a bunch of time perfecting the two versions we’ve already released, but we’re keen to keep working on new products. As it stands, we have some trials in the works that we'll be diligently drinking in-house before releasing them to the public. Predictably, we will be playing around with different hops and looking for other ways to enhance the flavours of our hop waters – all the while staying true to all the features that make this drink so spectacular: the subtle notes of hop flavour with no calories, no carbs, and no alcohol.
WELLINGTON BREWERY 950 WOODLAWN RD W, GUELPH
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Grand Trunk Saloon
PAT I O H OPPI N G:
EXPLORING POP-UP SPACES IN THE DTK WORDS & PHOTOS BY CHRIS TIESSEN
'Back in the day, you couldn’t pay me enough
the backstreet passageway ahead of us.
to get me to walk down these alleys at this
Temporary metal fencing draped with artificial
time of night,' I say, almost to myself, while
turf playfully dotted with miniature plastic
my fiancée, Liz, and I turn from Queen Street
pink flamingos frames the improvised space
onto Halls Lane in downtown Kitchener. Yet
to create a perfect (and perfectly-hidden) patio
here we are, on foot, exploring that once-
oasis. ‘I think we’re here,’ says Liz – excitement
threatening landscape in search of tasty eats
rising in her voice. As if on cue, Ellie, our nine-
and great drinks. I shake my head in disbelief,
month-old agouti husky, lets out a signature
thinking: ‘It’s crazy how, over these past
howl. Liz shortens Ellie’s leash and reminds
couple decades, the DTK has turned things
her to behave. Good luck with that, I think to
myself as we are greeted by the hostess of AOK Craft Beer + Arcade, who invites us to
Several yards up the laneway we hear
grab any open table.
the sounds of laughter and camaraderie echoing off the alley walls. Light emanates
Liz and I choose a four-seater against the
from a covered alcove off to the side of
turfed fence and look around. The space is
Bruno Smoky’s piece in Halls Lane. Photo by Liz Deredin AOK Craft Beer + Bar
a perfect mixture of grit and games. A few
glam pink collar and leash – play between the
feet from us, positioned against a fire escape
tables, Liz and I learn that the couple’s visiting
stairway and crumbling brick wall, is a table
from Toronto to check out the local scene.
stacked with board games and merch. Above
‘We’re staying at The Walper for night,’ one
us the local pigeons, nestled into open
of them tells us, ‘before heading back in the
spaces between sheet metal and brick, seem
morning.’ Inherently curious, I wonder aloud
oblivious to the plethora of plastic flamingos
why folks from the big smoke travel this way
just below. Most of the tables (socially-
for fun, and she lets us know: ‘We use TOQUE
distanced, of course) are occupied with
Magazine as a guide for our explorations
couples on dates and larger groups of friends,
outside the city.’
their hands wrapped around pints and grub, their attention directed towards each other.
I can die happy now. And I let her know it.
One table over, a couple with a dog strike up
For the next hour or so, the dogs (amazingly)
a conversation with us. While Ellie and their
entertain each other while Liz and I share
pooch – a Costa Rican rescue with the most
a fantastic plate of ‘Super Smash Nachos’
Soft shell crab from Grank Trunk Saloon (top); evening details from the DTK (the rest)
Photo by Liz Deredin
Summer In Downtown Kitchener
(double layer of cheddar, jalapenos, black olives, fresh pico de gallo, salsa, sour cream) and a ‘Classic Arcade Dog’ (ketchup, mustard, diced onions). I enjoy the ‘Nerdgroni’ (gin, cacao-infused Campari, sweet vermouth) while Liz polishes off a Great Lakes ‘Thrust’ IPA. Satisfied, but with room to spare, we pay up and hit the next spot on this downtown alleyway barhop: Grand Trunk Saloon. We’re on a particular mission, you see: to hit up a smattering of downtown Kitchener’s pop-up patios funded by the Business Improvement Area (BIA) in their initiative to help restaurants and other businesses recover from the impacts of this ongoing pandemic. Because there are so many patios – around twenty altogether – Liz and I are focusing our efforts on a handful in and around Halls Lane. On another day we'll do another patch of this eclectic tapestry of outdoor terraces and courtyards. We meander up the lane from AOK to Grand Trunk Saloon, taking time to check out the eye-catching graffiti and other murals along the way. (Bruno Smoky’s massive wraparound piece is especially striking.) In a couple minutes we’re seated on the saloon's cozy secluded patio. When the last bits of evening light fade, the seven-table setting announces itself as the perfect spot for date-night cocktails. The patio, built up on a wooden platform protected – by fine netting above our heads – from the sun (by day) and light rain (this night), is lit by strings of bulbs and a vintage marquee-style lit sign. The perfect setting for a photo, I think, sweetly augmented by the cute couple sharing drinks (and seeming fledgling romance) in the fanciful light. Grand Trunk Saloon is an unrivaled local destination for southern classics – from mezcalbased drinks to comfort food like chicken ‘n waffles, cheddar biscuits, hush puppies, and jambalaya. We share the ‘Soft Shell Crab’ (crispy fried crab, hominy frites, arugula pesto, grana
c h t k i e r
c h t i
c a . e r
Vignettes from Sugar Run & Grand Trunk Saloon
Padano), and Liz orders the feature cocktail:
in the open. Located along Halls Lane past
a pineapple margarita. I choose the virgin
Queen Street in what’s usually a parking lot,
‘Floral Curtains’ (lemon, fresh melon, jasmine
the expansive space – animated by rows
riesling syrup, bitters). Our server, so gracious
of picnic tables, large planters, an outdoor
and attentive, brings us also, as a treat, ‘A
bar, and strings of twinkly lights – offers the
Daisy at Tommy’s’ (casamigos reposado
perfect remedy for pandemic blues. And
tequila, fortified wine, amaro, fennel, orange,
the terrific drinks and food seal the deal. Liz
raspberry, lime, citrus, fennel salt). ‘Because I
orders a ‘Darling Nicky’ (dubonnet, aperol,
think it’ll look good in your photos,’ she posits.
lemon, ginger, prosecco, CO2) while I sip on
I don’t disagree. Liz and I polish off our food
a ‘Rhythm Section’ (tequila, lime, strawberry,
and drinks and make our way to our last stop:
amaro, mint, aquafava, NO2). We share
the Sugar Run patio.
a board of oysters (lemon, horseradish, habanero hot sauce), and immerse ourselves
As an indoor speakeasy, Sugar Run has
in these new DTK vibes.
always kept its location secret. As a popup patio, though, it’s big and bold and out
This is definitely not the downtown of my
youth. And, I think to myself, this is a very good thing
A lifestyle to savour.
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GETTING TO KNOW: CHRIS KNIGHT, FARMER AT AYRSYDE FARMS INTERVIEW BY CHRIS TIESSEN W HEN Y O U G E T T H E C H A NC E T O V I S I T WI LLI BALD F AR M DI S TI LLE R Y & BR E WE R Y I N AY R S OM E T I M E I N T H E NE A R F U T U RE ( B E C A U S E, R E ALLY , Y OU’ VE GOT TA GE T T H E R E ) AN D Y OU’ R E S I TTING ON T HE F R O NT P A T I O O R A T T H E O UT D OOR BI E R GAR TE N , Y OU' R E LI K E LY T O S E E A H E R D OF C AT T LE G R A Z I NG C O NT E NT E D L Y I N T H E F I E LD T H AT ABUTS T H E P LAC E . T H OS E GALLOWAY C AT T LE A RE O N T H E W I L L I B A L D M E NU – I N TH E R E S T AUR AN T ’ S BUR GE R S AN D C H AR C UTE R I E, FOR EXAM P L E . A ND I F Y O U W E RE A BLE TO S E E JUS T BE Y ON D T H E C ATT LE , D I D Y OU K N OW THAT T HER E AR E P I G S E NJ O Y I NG T H E I R O WN DAY - TO- D AY LI VE S I N TH E F OR E S T N E AR BY ? TH E Y ’ R E T HE S AME P I G S T H A T A RE O N T H E M E N U – I N T H E P OR C H E TT A AN D H AM S AN DWI C H E S , F OR S T AR T ER S . F A RM T O F O RK , I ND E E D . BUT WH AT ’ S T H E DE AL WI T H T H E S E AN I MALS ? A F E W WEEKS BAC K, CH R I S F R O M T O Q U E T R A V E L E D T O AY R S O H E C OULD C H AT WI T H C H R I S K N I GH T , C ATTL E AN D P I G F A RM E R O F A Y RS Y D E F A R M S , TO LE AR N S OME TH I N G ABOUT WH E R E OUR F OOD C OMES FR OM. HE RE ’ S W H A T C H R I S ( K NI G H T) H AD T O S AY :
WHAT SORTS OF ANIMALS DO YOU RAISE A T AYRSYDE FARMS?
they’d be fun to raise, so we tried our hand at
We raise Galloway cattle, as well as a few heritage
learning experience. You can find our hogs out in
breed hogs. Galloways are an ancient breed that
our bush – digging and rooting all day.
originates from Scotland, and they’re perfectly suited to be kept outside year-round. They are exclusively grass-fed and, because we intensely rotate their pastures, they always have the best grass.
IN YOUR MIND, WHAT MAKES YOUR OPERATION SPECIAL? Ayrsyde Farms puts animal welfare first. We’re extremely patient when raising our cattle and pigs: we don’t rush them, but instead let them develop at their own pace.
WOULD WE BE FAMILIAR WITH ANY OF YOUR CLIENTS? For sure. We have a wide range of clients – from individuals to local butchers to restaurants and restaurant groups. We supply our next door neighbour, Willibald, with cattle and pigs, for example. And Pearle Group [Bread Bar, Elora Mill, Cambridge Mill, and more] is also a client of ours.
YOU STARTED WITH GALLOWAY CATTLE – WHY ADD PIGS? Pigs really started out of curiosity. We thought
raising heritage breed hogs. It’s been a meaningful
WHO WOULD BE A DREAM CLIENT FOR YOU? Our ideal client is someone who understands the benefits of buying meat that’s been raised to produce the healthiest product in the best setting for the animal.
WHEN YOU'RE NOT BUSY FARMING, WHERE DO YOU GO FOR LOCAL EATS AND ENTERTAINMENT? Truthfully, farming doesn’t really leave a lot of time
for playing, but we do enjoy sampling some of the fine products from our neighbours at Willibald and playing golf at Whistlebear
THE WORDS BY ZACHARY RESNICK; PHOTOS BY SARAH FARMER
THE LAST SIP OF WINE, THE LAST BITE OF A SHARED DESSERT, THE LAST CHIT. 90
THE RESTAURANT BUSINESS HAS ALWAYS BEEN PHYSICALLY AND MENTALLY DEMANDING, BUT NOW IT FEELS AS IF EACH DAY COULD BE THE LAST. MANY ISSUES PLAGUING RESTAURANTS HAVE BEEN KEPT UNDER WRAPS FOR A LONG TIME, AND THE CURRENT CLIMATE BRINGS MORE TOLLS. THROUGH A DEPICTION OF THE DAY-TO-DAY STRUGGLES OF A HANDFUL OF REGIONAL CHEFS, WE ARE ABLE TO FOREGROUND SOME OF THEIR CHALLENGES, GAIN NEW RESPECT FOR WHAT IT TAKES TO BE WHO THEY ARE AND DO WHAT THEY DO, AND PERHAPS LEARN SOMETHING ABOUT HOW WE MIGHT SUPPORT THESE ARTISANS BEFORE IT’S TRULY THEIR LAST SERVICE.
P AS SI O N & D EDI C ATI ON : Chef David Sider Redstone Winery and Restaurant, Beamsville When the expectation of a chef is to be on-call 24/7, carving out time for family and personal life becomes a balancing act. As Chef David Sider notes: ‘When I’m at work, I’m at work. But it’s not easy. I feel guilty a few times a week that I’m missing my kids growing up.’ He continues: ‘There’s always something. And you can’t expect the kids to understand that. They have their own perspective. It can be hard, going out the door again when they’re begging you to stay – especially during the summer when they’re home all the time. But deadlines are deadlines.’
S O U R C I N G L O C AL : Chef Fraser Macfarlane Quatrefoil Restaurant & Brux House, Dundas & Hamilton ‘Farm to Table’ has become a popular idiom – but going completely local is far from a simple task. ‘If you’re going to go totally local, your location dictates what you can and can’t do,’ remarks Chef Fraser Macfarlane. ‘We aren’t able to have our own greenhouse or farm, so we rely on distributors that collect from local farms.’ He adds: ‘It’s important to form relationships with local farmers – especially for young cooks. You tend to treat the product with more respect when you can put a face to it. But these relationships take time to foster. It’s not just ticking boxes on an online order form. A chef sacrifices hours of their day just to get the best ingredients, let alone prepping them.’
R E STAU R ANT E C ON OM ICS: Chef Vita Saelzer Miijidaa café + bistro, Guelph It’s not easy for restaurants to turn a profit, maybe in part because the demands on the staff are so onerous – and diverse. Chef Vita Saelzer observes: ‘In smaller restaurants, seemingly everything falls on the chef’s lap so it’s oftentimes hard to focus. If only people knew how many hats chefs wear.’ She continues: ‘I hate having to leave my cooks to do admin work, but it has to get done. Sometimes it makes me feel less connected to the food when I have to be expo, accountant, schedule writer, janitor, and therapist.’
COOKI N G I N A COV I D W O R L D : Chef Shaun Edmonstone Bruce Wine Bar & Bodega, Thornbury The pandemic has certainly changed the way restaurants are run. Chef Shaun Edmonstone provides some insight: ‘COVID has changed day-to-day operations. One of our dining rooms is now being used exclusively to package takeout. We’re baking bread and pastries for take-home purchase and freezing meals to-go. We’ve got hundreds of Jamaican patties and pounds of sausage for wholesale. We’ve become more of a bodega than a restaurant. And,’ he adds, ‘we’re doing all of these new things with half the staff.’
R AI N I NG C HIT S: Chef Thompson Tran Wooden Boat Food Company, Kitchener A cornerstone of good food is producing as much as you can in-house. COVID has done much to interfere with this. As Chef Thompson Tran notes: ‘Sometimes I’m working by myself in the kitchen for hours on end. And it’s still not enough. I’d much rather buy local dairy to make cheese, for instance, but I just can’t justify the labour right now so I’m buying top-quality local cheese instead.’ He continues: ‘I don’t know if anyone can safely stock a full pantry right now. With the high risk of further lockdowns, and the cost of having staff work upwards of fifteen hours a day to produce food in-house, I’m faced with real – and costly – dilemmas.’
I S F I N E D I N I N G DE AD? Chef Jason Bangerter Langdon Hall, Cambridge COVID restrictions and lockdowns have decimated the restaurant industry. Is the era of fine dining over? Chef Jason Bangerter remarks: ‘In my opinion, quite the opposite is happening. When the opportunity presents itself to go out and dine again, people will take it. When we re-opened last summer, for instance, not only did we have a wait-list but it was the tasting menu that was the most sought-after experience. We’ve all been home, stuck in our track pants, eating the same things. I really do think that once it’s safe to go out, it’ll be like the ‘roaring twenties’ all over again.’
T H E S MO K I N G GUN: Chefs Rafael Covarrubias & Lili Linda Hexagon & 7 Enoteca, Oakville Traditionally, a fleeting conversation over a cigarette between orders has been the only real time to create bonds in the kitchen. Thankfully, this has begun to change. As Chef Rafael Covarrubias notes: ‘I try to make the work environment less militaristic than what I came from. This way, my cooks don’t need to run for a smoke just to connect. My kitchen isn’t a free for all, mind you, but we let workload dictate atmosphere.’ Pastry Chef Lili Linda adds: ‘Pastry prep starts so early, but even though we have different hours and a different kitchen I don’t let it be segregated. We’re all one team. When you work with people sixteen hours a day, you get to know them no matter what.’
A R E C I P E F OR BUR N OU T: Chef Brian McCourt The Ignite Group, Waterloo Region Chefs have earned a reputation for having unhealthy lifestyles. Why’s this? And what’s to be done about it? Chef Brian McCourt weighs in: ‘As a chef, you spend upwards of sixteen hours a day cooking for other people without ever getting a chance to sit down and eat. And when you finally get home, maybe there’s an egg in your fridge. It’s easy to say you have to make time for yourself, but where does the time come from?’ He continues: ‘As managers and leaders, we have to make sure our cooks aren't depleting themselves. We need to nurture a culture of value in which cooks will value themselves as much as they value guests. It's important that they cook good food for themselves, take care of themselves, get enough sleep. Cooks need time off for a hobby – not just enough time to do laundry and come back to work.’
ADD I C TE D T O THE I N DU STR Y: Chef Hani Firin Elora Mill & Spa, Elora Substance abuse in the restaurant industry
understanding, without shame and guilt, is
is more prevalent than some might think.
what’s needed. You need to set boundaries
‘It’s almost like this built-in lifestyle,’ remarks
and make sure you’re taking care of yourself,
Chef Hani Firin. ‘Industry folks don’t work
too. Get to know chefs. Things are moving in
regular hours, so it places us in our own world.
the right direction, but there’s still a long way
Because of this, and because of what we
to go. There’s a new breed of cooks these
see around us, it becomes harder to identify
days that aren’t afraid to reach out when they
when there’s a problem.’ And so what to do?
need help. That’s amazing to see.’
Chef Hani offers this: ‘Open conversation and
86’D: Chefs Nick Benninger & Sydney Keedwell Fat Sparrow Group, Waterloo Region & Killbear The day is over; the chef finally heads home. What awaits them in the dead of night? ‘For me, it doesn’t stop even when I get home,’ Chef Nick Benninger remarks. ‘When you’re in charge of multiple outlets, one’s always bound to be on fire. You can’t celebrate a success, because somewhere else there’s a crisis. It feels like it never stops – even for a second.’ Chef Sydney Keedwell concurs. ‘It can be tough,’ she notes, ‘working the long hours and then coming home to a dark house where everyone is already asleep. You know, I try to make something to eat, to spend time with my partner, but sometimes I end up checking emails and orders because there wasn’t enough time at work to do these things.’
POSTLUDE THE LAST SERVICE IS DEDICATED TO OUR COLLEAGUES, FRIENDS, AND FAMILIES WHO WORK IN THE RESTAURANT INDUSTRY. ALTHOUGH THIS HAS BEEN AN EXCEPTIONALLY TRYING YEAR, THE LAST SERVICE LOOKS BEYOND THE ISSUES POSED BY THE PANDEMIC. IN ADDITION TO THE VERY REAL OBSTACLES AND CHALLENGES ILLUSTRATED BY THE CHEFS IN THEIR TABLEAUS, OUR LOCAL ECONOMIES AND COMMUNITIES ARE UNDER SIEGE. RESTAURANTS CAN BRING PEOPLE TOGETHER. IN DINING ROOMS, ACROSS CROWDED BARS, AND IN KITCHENS. NO MATTER WHAT THE RESTAURANT INDUSTRY BECOMES, COMMUNITY WILL ALWAYS BE A PART OF IT. TO UNDERSTAND A DAY IN THE LIFE OF ANY CHEF IS TO APPRECIATE THEIR COMMITMENT TO YOU, YOUR FRIENDS, AND YOUR FAMILIES, SOMETIMES AT THE EXPENSE OF THEIR OWN. PLEASE BE KIND AND SUPPORT YOUR LOCAL RESTAURANT COMMUNITY BEFORE IT REALLY IS THEIR LAST SERVICE.
WHITE KN UCKLIN’: A DAY AT THE RACE TRACK WITH THE PFAFF CREW WORDS & PHOTOS BY CHRIS TIESSEN
106 As the speed of our pace car – a sweet Porsche
dozen other privateer rides – at the lot just off the
Cayman in Pfaff livery – keeps increasing ahead of
race course. As I open the door and emerge from the
me, and the line of cars in my rear-view mirror inches
Subie, my nostrils are filled with the distinctive smells
impatiently closer, the writing on the wall becomes
of tire rubber and high-revving turbocharged engine:
ever more clear: I need to get off this rollercoaster. My
the distinctive aroma of my spent dreams.
nerves are rattled. My knuckles, gripped tightly to the wheel, are white. And I’m beginning to realize that my dreams of becoming an F1 racer (driven, in no small part, by my recent fave Netflix doc, ‘Formula 1: Drive to Survive’) will never be realized. ‘Okay, drivers,’ crackles a voice from the two-way radio sitting on the otherwise empty passenger seat beside me, ‘this is our last lap.’ It’s our pace car driver. And I have no doubt that he’s deliberately saving me from a grim demise on this track. Here, in quaint Bowmanville ON, on the infamous Grand Prix Circuit at the Canadian Tire Motorsport Park where the Pfaff Auto group of dealerships is hosting a handful of customers to a day-long track session. Thank heavens above, it isn’t long before I spot the
Next to me, an older gentleman tinkers in the engine bay of his brand new Porsche 911 GT3. A few cars away, a younger driver – leaning on the hood of his lime green Mercedes AMG GT Coupe – regales some friends about his most recent hot lap. Spotting me from across the lot, a member of the Pfaff Subaru team jogs over to check in on me. ‘So,’ she asks with anticipation, ‘how’d you like it?’ Still a bit stunned by the whole ordeal, and struggling to camouflage my overriding sense of inadequacy, I take a moment to think it over. ‘I didn’t realize we’d be going that fast,’ I manage to sputter out – fear constricting my throat. ‘I mean,’ I add, ‘I loved the first few laps. But things got pretty hairy pretty quickly out there.’
exit to pit lane.
She grins, looks at me quizzically, and then ventures:
Downshifting the brand new shiny black Subaru WRX
STi (graciously on loan to me from Pfaff Subaru in Guelph) from sixth to fifth, I manage (with neither subtlety nor grace) to make it off the track, navigate my way through pit row, and park – next to a couple
‘So I guess this means you don’t want to take out the
I chuckle, feign disinterest, and scurry to the safety of
photographers’ row. After all, camera gear is more my speed
Cook-outs. Barbecues. Afternoons by the pool. Picnics in the park. Summer’s a season with endless opportunities for entertaining and tomfoolery. And for putting fun products to the test – for cooking, nibbling, drinking & keeping your skin protected too. Why not start with some of these? After all, they’re sure to please. 'Urban Slicer' Pizza Dough for BBQ F i nd i t a t : The Witty & Co (Cambridge) thewittyandco.com 'City Seltzer' Berry Whip & Cool Melon sodas F i nd i t a t : Old Galt Bottle Shop (Cambri dge) ogbottleshop.ca
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S T JA C O B S F ARMERS’ MARK ET : MORE THAN MEETS THE EYE WORDS BY CAI SEPULIS; PHOTOS BY CHRIS TIESSEN
‘I still can’t believe that all this food is
And to visit the St Jacobs Farmers’ Market,
available at the Market,’ I exclaim to my
too – which is what Chris and I are up to
TOQUE Partner, Chris, as I stare down at
on this busy market Thursday in June. The
the spread laid out in front of us. Samosas.
Market was once best known for Old Order
Dolmas. Hummus. Cubanos. Cannolis. And
Mennonite fare – butchered meats, summer
more. Chris and I are seated in the back of
sausage, fresh eggs, and local produce. But
the Mercedes Sprinter that my wife, Sonia,
there's so much more. And we’re here to
and I acquired and converted into a veritable
prove it by assembling the ultimate picnic
mobile home at the beginning of COVID. ‘To
made up of the vast range of foods from the
traverse North America,’ I’d told her (to justify
diverse ethnic communities whose market
the purchase) when I’d won the auction for
merchandise foregrounds food items we
this massive vehicle. After all, converted
might encounter now and then, but that
vans and RVs made (and continue to make)
oftentimes fly under the radar.
perfect sense during this pandemic era – as mobile headquarters for outdoor adventures
I’ve always loved farmers’ markets. Indeed,
like biking, camping, and skiing: places to
I fondly remember going to the St. Jacobs
eat, sleep, change out of sweaty clothes, and
Market as a little kid with my mom and
safely store gear.
brothers. It was always a weekly highlight –
114 especially during the summer months when
do,’ Chris insists, ‘we have to get the hummus
the outdoor stalls seemed bursting with
from here.’ Creamy. Garlicy. Without peer. We
fresh colourful produce and we would come
buy two large containers and keep it moving.
home with bags brimming with tomatoes, cucumbers (for pickling), fresh herbs, berries,
Arriving at Holy Cannoli, I exclaim: ‘Oh, I
pepperettes, and, of course, apple fritters.
know this place.’ Chris’ attention is piqued.
And while the Market continues to feature
‘They’re based in Toronto,’ I continue, ‘and we
those same conventional stalls with their
used to buy their cannolis all the time. It’s so
seasonal delights, today we walk straight
cool that they’re here now too.’ We order a
past them and line up at the Main Building to
handful of vanilla, cappuccino, and cookies
begin our quest.
and cream cannolis, and watch as the vendor fills them right before our eyes. Then, seeing
Inside is just as I remember it: massive wood
my arms overflowing with boxes and bags
beams supporting the two-storey building
(and Chris busy taking photos), the man filling
(and also Darryl Sittler’s retired number
our cannolis asks if he can give us something
banner that used to hang from the rafters
to carry our ever-growing array of wares.
at old Maple Leaf Gardens), open stalls
Embarrassed that I've arrived so unprepared
lining the outer and inner walls, and the
(COVID absent-mindedness and all that), I
smell of fresh meats, produce, and timber.
gratefully accept one of his insulated fabric
We begin to scour the place for what we’re
bags. ‘Don’t worry,’ he says with a smile, ‘it’s
after, stopping at La Casbah (Moroccan) for
on the house.’
mahajeb, Chorizos La Abuela (Mexican) for churros, and Almadina (Middle Eastern) for
I sure have missed this place, I think to
hummus and samosas. ‘Whatever else we
Jamie, Stella & Evangelos of A Taste of Greece
La Casbah’s Nacer & Noor
Maria from A Portuguese Bakery
Chris and I make our way from the Main Building to Peddlers’ Village – the market building that was destroyed by fire back in 2016. Just inside, we arrive at Taste of Greece and Chris sprints up to order a pita. ‘Do we each want one?,’ he asks. I raise an eyebrow, gesturing towards my newlyacquired bag, packed to the brim. ‘Ya, you’re right,’ he laughs. ‘One’s enough to share.' While Chris waits for our order to come up, my roving eye spots something irresistible down the way: A Portuguesa Bakery. I sneak off and return with a half dozen tarts. ‘Okay,’ I tell him, ‘now I think we’re done.’ We meander back to the Sprinter past the outdoor stalls of gleaming fresh produce and bountiful greens and blooms. We are about to begin to eat the smorgasbord we've set out in front of us when I remember the van cooler, and pull out a 'Crystal Park Pilsner' and an 'Iron Horse Trail IPA' from Stockyard Brewing Company. The brewery (formerly Red Circle Brewing Company – a brand that TOQUE helped create and has
Open Mon to Sun, 10 am - 6 pm 845 Weber St. N., Waterloo or shop online at www.marketroadantiques.shop @marketroadantiques
sadly had to see retire) expects to open a large
brewhouse in the Market in the near future and their Stockyard identity is a nod to their new
home. Chris and I raise our cans – to each other, and
to the extraordinary feast laid out in front of us – and dig in. After a few mouthfuls Chris declares our little Thursday adventure as 'pretty spectacular.’ And indeed it is. Market food. Fresh beer. My mobile home that doubles as an offbeat dining room – with sightlines to the Market's bustle and charm. I reach for a mahajeb, dip it in that most incredible hummus, and take a bite. ‘I can’t even decide what I like best,’ I remark. ‘It’s all so good.’ Chris – his mouth full of dolma – doesn’t seem to hear me. He’s in his own little heaven. Indeed, van life and farmers’ markets are the perfect pairing. As is fresh beer and Market
wares. Here – at The St Jacobs Farmers’ Market
ST. JACOBS FARMERS' MARKET 878 WEBER ST N, WATERLOO
FOOD | ARTISANS | VINTAGE FINDS | AND MORE
TUES & THURS 8AM - 3PM SAT 7AM - 3:30PM WWW.STJACOBSMARKET.COM @STJACOBSMARKET
A common topic in investing these days is ESG or Environmental, Social and Governance. It has long been a part of our process to ask clients about how they define these values as part of their investment strategy and general corporate responsibility, and lately I’m experiencing a higher degree of interest and engagement in these conversations. It brings up memories of when seemingly overnight everything was ‘organic’ at the grocery store: although you see it in a lot of places, it’s hard to be sure what it means or where companies fall on the ESG spectrum until you do a little digging. First and foremost, it is a good thing that investors are becoming critical of the companies they invest in – their values, principles, and how they operate. Their analysis leads to discussions of corporate responsibility, and it is changing corporate behaviour. Some people may argue corporate responsibility has gone too far and is stamping out growth, while others insist it hasn’t gone far enough as it contributes to resiliency in the economy and communities. What’s healthy is that there is discussion happening and action is being taken by companies to lead change.
Mike Hryn | firstname.lastname@example.org
EXPERT OPINION | INVESTMENT
INVESTING CHOICES ARE INCREASINGLY BEING CONNECTED TO OUR PERSONAL VALUES B Y M I K E H R Y N
If clients are interested in investing in ethical companies, I encourage them to further explore which of the ESG letters resonate with them when they are considering an opportunity. You could be most focused on environmental responsibility, personally, or may choose to examine a
company’s performance in all three areas: a successful tech giant might align with values of environmental stewardship and effective governance, but if it builds its products in questionable working conditions does it meet your overall expectations? There are many examples of companies with two sides to them that qualify. For each person, the lens will be different and that’s why a conversation helps to try to quantify what it means to them. Many pensions and endowments have goals to end direct oil and gas ownership in their portfolios, for example, and some of the largest investment managers in the world have now made ESG a very important component in deciding the investment merits in companies. Getting to know where companies stand helps guide our choices. Like all things in the world, these days change is rapid and investing is no different. The focus on bringing pressure to companies to be more corporately responsible is a good thing. What I see is that change will continue to happen as, ultimately, companies will do what customers ask.
I’ll keep asking and so should you. All material has been prepared by Mike Hryn, who is a Portfolio Manager, Investment Advisor with the Mactaggart Hryn Team at Richardson Wealth Limited. The opinions expressed in this report are the opinions of the author and readers should not assume they reflect the opinions or recommendations of Richardson Wealth Limited or its affiliates. Richardson Wealth Limited, Member Canadian Investor Protection Fund. Richardson Wealth is a trademark of James Richardson & Sons Limited, used under license.
Meeting essential community needs – watch for details coming soon
2021-06-28 2:05 PM
GETTING TO KNOW: MARIA FEARNALL, FRANCHISE OWNER AT F45 TRAINING INTERVIEW BY CHRIS TIESSEN; PHOTO SUBMITTED BY F45 F45 I S FO R E V E R Y B O D Y A ND E V E RY B ODY . T HE GY M ' S I NT E NS E , F U L L - B O D Y T RAI N I N G S ES S I ON S – E A C H F O R T Y - F I V E M I NU TE S LON G AND D E S I G NE D F O R B O T H B E G I N N E R S AN D T HE M O S T E X P E R I E NC E D G Y M GOE R S – AR E ALL A B O U T E F F I C I E NT P R O G R A M MI N G AN D P HE NO M E NA L RE S U L T S . A F E W WE E K S BAC K, T O Q U E ’ S C H R I S T I E S S E N I NT E R VI E WE D T W O-T I M E F 4 5 F RA NC H I S E O W NE R MAR I A FEAR N AL L T O F I ND O U T W H A T T H E S E W OR KOU T S A RE A L L A B O U T :
CAN YOU TELL US A BIT ABOUT F45? For sure. We provide heart-pumping, fun-filled
WHAT’S BEEN YOUR FAVOURITE PART ABOUT OPENING YOUR F45 GYMS?
workouts seven days a week – and even have a live
I’ve loved watching a community grow organically.
DJ join us for Saturdays. With two certified coaches
We did it in Kitchener and now we’re doing it again in
in every class, members get the experience of a
Guelph. Oh, and finding our Manager and now co-owner,
group fitness environment while receiving the
benefits of personal, one-on-one training. We offer our members great motivation, support, and education aimed at giving them the best experience inside and outside our studio.
I IMAGINE THAT THE BUSINESS HAS HAD TO PIVOT THROUGH THE PANDEMIC? Yes, of course. Thankfully F45 headquarters put together a new format of workouts for use during
HOW DID YOU GET INTO THE BUSINESS?
lockdown – including F45 Live, designed for members
I've been a competitive cheerleading coach for
F45 Circuit, designed for workouts in studio. The Circuit
fifteen years and felt it was time to grow my
model provides the same great workout while allowing
coaching career into something new. After being
everyone to be socially distanced by at least two meters,
a member at a fitness studio, I realized that what I
with no shared equipment.
enjoyed most about it was the personable coaches and the environment they provided. When I found out about F45 through a friend, my fiancé and I applied to be franchise owners. Two years and a pandemic later, we’ve successfully opened a franchise in Kitchener and are opening our second location at Gordon Square in the south end of Guelph – where I used to live.
who prefer to access our workouts from home, and
WHO’S THE IDEAL CLIENT FOR F45? It’s someone who’s wanting change and is ready to put in the work to get there. Folks who are ready to dive all in and enjoy the entire experience are those who will get the most out of our classes.
WHEN YOU'RE NOT WORKING AT THE GYM, WHERE ARE YOU EATING AROUND TOWN?
I’m a die-hard Bread Bar fan and a La Reina fanatic. I could honestly eat at those restaurants every day
OF F T H E B E AT EN P A T H :
THE HUGHES LANE ART WALK
WORDS & PHOTOS BY CHRIS TIESSEN
PREAMBLE & PHOTOS BY CHRIS TIESSEN
NEXT TIME YOU VISIT UPTOWN WATERLOO, DON’T HESITATE TO STRAY OFF THE MAIN THOROUGHFARES. FOR WHILE KING STREET HAS MUCH TO OFFER, IT’S THE SIDE STREETS AND BACK ALLEYS OF THIS TERRIFIC CORE THAT GIVE THE AREA ITS DISTINCTIVE FLAVOUR. HUGHES LANE IS A PERFECT EXAMPLE. CREATED IN PARTNERSHIP WITH THE UPTOWN WATERLOO BIA, CITY OF WATERLOO ARTS AND CULTURE TEAM (CREATE WATERLOO) AND LOCAL ARTISTS, THE HUGHES LANE ART WALK IS A PLACE-MAKING PILOT THAT SERVES TO ANIMATE AND TRANSFORM AN UPTOWN ALLEYWAY INTO A VIBRANT CORRIDOR OF PUBLIC ART CRAFTED BY LOCAL ARTISTS. SO POKE AROUND CORNERS. EXPLORE SIDE STREETS. VENTURE DOWN ALLEYS. GET CURIOUS.
JASON PANDA ‘Untitled’
@kwpanda Look closely and you’ll see that Jason’s piece is an homage to Waterloo Park: its gazebos, boardwalks, water, and green spaces. Panda's work features a tessalation of shapes, lines, and colours that the artist notes project evocative impressions of community, environment, and creativity. Jason’s piece is located at the back of Scoop Du Jour (17 Erb St E) – Uptown’s response to hot & muggy summer days. With vegan and goat’s milk options complementing regular dairy-laced ice cream, ice cream cookies, and in-house cold brew affogato, there’s something for everyone.
‘Meditations on Breath’ @kwpanda ‘We are all connected by invisible threads. Breath is urban air quality, and how we greet strangers. It is interdependence. Cut down a tree in a neighbourhood, and we all feel the difference in our lungs. Breath branches out of our bodies in ways that can be seen. Bronchioles in the lungs, tree root systems. Coral structures, the breath of the ocean.’
Jackie’s mural is located at the back of Hustl + Flow (120 King St S). When you’ve finished your yoga, boxing, cycling, or strength class here, why not replenish with a cold brew and fried chicken bucket at Beertown (75 King St S) – because a life worth living should be full of contradictions.
‘Waawaashkeshi’ (deer); ‘Gekek’ (hawk) @lukeswinsonart For this two-door mural, Anishinaabe artist Luke Swinson depicts a deer and hawk – animals native to this region. Inspired by woodland art produced by indigenous artists of his youth, Luke hopes his piece will serve as a reminder of the natural beauty that surrounds us – including the creatures with whom we share space. Luke’s mural is at the rear of 21 Fir Whiskey Bar + Kitchen (100 King St S) – a prohibition-inspired restaurant and cocktail bar specializing in whiskeys and chef-inspired tapas, appetizers, and mains. 21 Fir's alcohol-based drinks are superb, and for those wanting to refrain there’s always ‘The Sober Pirate’ (ginger beer, pineapple & lime juices, angostura bitters, mint).
KAT HERNDEN ‘Untitled’
@kathernden Kat adores patterns – noting that they imbue this chaotic world in which we live with grounding structure and order. Even something as simple as a patio chair from McCabe’s is filled with wonderful patterns. Inspiration lurks everywhere once you’re open to receiving it. You’ll find Kat’s geometric mural at the back of McCabe’s (44 King St S) – Uptown’s Irish pub. Bring your appetite next time you visit, and enjoy pub staples like bangers & mash, fish & chips, or steak & mushroom pie.
TARA COOPER ‘Untitled’
taracooper.com For this work, Tara draws inspiration from Henri Matisse’s ponchoir prints from the French artist’s 1947 book, ‘Jazz.’ The piece is meant to evoke a sense of taking care: of ourselves, each other, and the natural environment. You’ll find Tara’s piece on the rear doors of Bud & Sally Cannabis Co (32 King St S). And while this headshop doesn’t have food or a patio, Taco Farm (Erb St W) is just up the street – providing the perfect remedy for the munchies.
R I V E R F E ST E LO R A’ S
Elora Centre For The Arts
Tickets & Info at riverfestelora.com
THE TREWS KARDINAL OFFISHALL THE BARR BROTHERS
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g u e l p h cu st o m ho m e s . c a d a n @ d a n c l ay t o nho m e s . c a 51 9 - 8 3 0 - 3 7 9 7
SAY CHEESE: THREE FROMAGERIES THAT BLESS THIS REGION OF OURS WORDS BY DANI KUEPFER; PHOTOS BY CHRIS TIESSEN
FOR THIS TOQUE ASSIGNMENT, I WAS TASKED WITH SEARCHING OUT A FEW OF OUR REGION’S GREAT FROMAGERIES. WHILE WE ALL KNOW THAT BOUTIQUE GROCERS LIKE VINCENZO’S (WATERLOO), MARKET FRESH (GUELPH) AND ELORA MERCANTILE (YEP, ELORA) HAVE FANTASTIC SELECTIONS, THERE’S ALWAYS TIME AND PLACE FOR DEDICATED CHEESE SHOPS. NEED PROOF? LOOK NO FURTHER:
G R EEN GO D D ES S FRO MAG ERIE 447 Elizabeth St, Guelph greengoddessguelph.ca
There are few things we can all agree on – that is,
nutty, and perfectly smokey Irish cheddar. Crumbly,
except for cheese. Everyone (well, almost everyone)
salty chevre. Mozzarella that melts, bubbles, and
loves cheese. Even if traditional dairy varieties aren’t
browns. Squeaky halloumi – ready to be fried to
our thing, cheese, for many of us, tends to evoke
perfection. And marble cheddar: a classic that just
feelings of comfort, nostalgia, and lavishness. Recently
begs to be reinvented. All dairy-free. All with their own
I took a break from my obsessive pursuit of Guelph’s
distinct texture and flavour. All made in-house. And all
best oat milk latte and ventured to the edge of The
Ward (the Royal City’s eccentric old neighbourhood cradled between the Speed and Eramosa Rivers) to
While Green Goddess is based in Guelph, you can
find something equally luxurious: vegan cheese.
find these delectable products across the region in
A bit of an oxymoron, no? Believe me when I tell you –
– as well as on the menus of Shorty’s Pizza, Mijidaa,
this cheese is absolutely nuts. (Literally.)
Elora Brewing Company, and other ingredient-
Three years in the making and under a year in its flagship store, Green Goddess Fromagerie is causing a major shift in the gourmet cheese market. Fromagiers Morgan and Danielle have created a welcoming space in their bright east end shop, which doubles as their kitchen. Using traditional methods and notso-traditional ingredients, Green Goddess is crafting
gourmet shops like Goodness Me and Vincenzo’s
driven haunts. Even better, you can drop in to their charming shop on Elizabeth Street and find pleasure in the enticing display of cheeses and rotating items like plant-based eggs and cheesecakes. Daniella and Morgan, clearly passionate about their craft, will gladly guide you through their products – whether you’re new to vegan cheeses or in search of a new favourite.
melty, crumbly, and buttery cheeses that appeal to
And not that you need another reason to plan a visit
vegans and omnivores alike. Their cashew-based
to the shop, but you should know that Green Goddess
creations are cultured and aged just like conventional
is hosting rotating pop-ups on Saturdays through
dairy cheeses – familiar in quality, and yet something
the summer. You can get your fix of plant-based deli
sandwiches, croissants, barbeque, shawarma, and
Each of Green Goddess’ twenty-seven (and growing) cheese varieties have a distinct personality. Firm,
more every weekend. Check out their Instagram to see what’s coming next.
YOU SHOULD KNOW: • all the cheeses are made in-house • the shop’s vegan halloumi is to die for • there’s also a selection of killer cheese cakes
L A FRO MA GERI E O N LEXING TON 209 Lexington Rd, Waterloo lafromagerieonlex.ca If you ask someone their favourite thing about Paris,
Being inside La Fromagerie feels like stepping inside
they probably won’t say the Eiffel Tower (unless they
love the combination of cardio and queues – in which
bookshelves are stacked with decadent chutneys,
case I recommend they visit Guelph's ‘100 Steps’).
oils & vinegars, and mustards. On display also are
Instead, the beauty of Paris is in its abundant tiny joys.
gorgeous wooden charcuterie boards handcrafted by
Petite shops populated with an endless array of high-
a local woodworker. (Why wrap a hostess gift in paper,
quality goods arranged in compact, elegant displays.
when you can cover it with cheese?) There are dreamy
Now imagine if a Parisian shop fell in love with a 1950s
gelatos, best enjoyed on the stylish patio seats out
diner and settled down in Waterloo’s east side. You’d
front. And, of course, cases filled with judiciously-
get La Fromagerie on Lex – a darling little cheese shop
where the experience of shopping for a friend feels
like a gift in itself.
On the advice of one of the spot’s savvy young
Opened by shop owner Cindy in March of 2020, this
tart goat cheese with subtle notes of lemon and a
fromagerie has become a slice of Europe (or home) for
curious rind like scrunched, ash-grey velvet. Silky and
her loyal customers over the past year. The selection
delightful. I sample the fan favourite – a dreamy triple
of sumptuous cheeses and lavish spreads – almost all
cream brie, Chateau de Bourgogne. Voluptuous. I
of them imported – won’t be found anywhere else you
settle, finally, on a Raspberry Ale Bellavitano – nutty
can reach in an afternoon. What’s more, the passion
and ever-so-slightly crystalized with a kiss of bright,
and generosity of Cindy and her staff shine through
juicy raspberries. It evokes rosé-inspired picnics on
in their thoughtful and attentive recommendations.
During my last visit, as if on cue, a patron walked into the shop, perused the cases for a moment, and then turned to Cindy. ‘What is it that I came in for?,’ the patron asked. Cindy laughed and directed him to a Truffle Manchego. I get the sense that this was not a
fromagiers, I taste the coveted Grey Owl – a delicately
On the way out, I scoop up a bottle of my favourite Heartbeat habanero hot sauce, too. And then I fly – er, drive – home, ecstatic about the souvenirs of my little getaway.
YOU SHOULD KNOW: • the shop’s hot sauce selection is on fire • there are customized charcuterie boards available • and there's gelato, too
T O MME CHEES E S HO P 34 Carden St, Guelph tomme.ca Whenever I decide to treat myself for no particular
The secret to TOMME is truly in the marriage of
reason, which is increasingly often, I head to Carden
their exceptional offerings. Andrew and his talented
Street in the heart of downtown Guelph. Here, I revel
team’s willingness to get to know your tastes results
in an afternoon spent popping in and out of shops –
in a spread of flavour combinations that is nothing
gathering dreamy lattes, fresh bouquets, and buttery
short of magic. My suggestion for a divine grazing
pastries as I wander. My favourite stop, though, is a
experience: provide your budget, palate, and libation
downtown staple, and the paragon of indulgence:
of choice, and let them build you a sumptuous
TOMME Cheese Shop.
charcuterie spread. All you have to do is decide with
Located directly across from City Hall, the place
whom to share it.
envelopes you as you step inside. A stunning blue
While I hold that some things are better left to the
wall foregrounds shelves of ornate jars; the rich wood
experts, Andrew assures me that any combination
counter feel warms and luxurious. Swoon. I’d love to
you enjoy is the perfect pairing. ‘A pairing is more in
host a dinner party here (and shop proprietor Andrew
the heart than the head,’ he offers, and I can’t help
assures me this is an option, in the future).
but agree. There’s such joy in the exploration of new
While TOMME’s selection of Quebec blues, UK bries, and locally-sourced chevres are certainly the stars
flavours and textures – especially with the generous guidance of the TOMME folks.
of the show, the non-dairy supporting cast and crew
Before I leave the shop, Andrew slices me a wedge of
pull the whole act together. I browse the shelves for
our mutual favourite, mimolette (a salty, crystalized
local favourites (I adore Rootham’s Red Pepper Jelly
flavour bomb with a shocking orange hue and
and The Ketchup Project) and discover new gems like
cannonball black rind), plus something new: the 5
Provision’s Rose Petal Jam and Soma chocolates. As for
Brothers from Woodstock’s Gunn’s Hill, a blend of
liquid appurtenances, although I'm prone to reach for
creamy gouda and a nutty Swiss Appenzeller. I pop
a selection of staple brews and ciders from across the
next door for a fresh baguette from Eric the Baker,
region plus a collection of exclusive wines you won’t
then head to the park to meet some friends and share
find in the LCBO, I am always open to suggestion.
When Andrew guides me through some of his current muses, I catch a glimpse of the hand-scrawled tasting notes on a small tag – evidence of their collaboration with a local wine connoisseur.
YOU SHOULD KNOW: • TOMME sells wine and craft beer, too • there’s a cheese of the month club • when in doubt, choose the mimolette
A great way to spend any day
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OG BOTTLE SHOP:
A BEER LOVER’S ULTIMATE DESTINATION
IL K H
WORDS BY CAI SEPULIS; PHOTOS BY CHRIS TIESSEN L
‘I’ll take one of everything, apparently,’ I quip
It’s a Tuesday afternoon in late June, and
to my TOQUE Partner Chris with a chuckle
we're at the Old Galt Bottle Shop, where
– raising my heavy-laden shopping basket
I'm stocking up for the fast-approaching
to eye level for emphasis. It’s overflowing
weekend. Located in the former South
with beautifully-designed and fantastically-
Waterloo Agricultural Society building on
colourful cans from Blood Brothers,
the banks of the mighty Grand, the Bottle
Dominion City, Bellwoods, Left Field, and
Shop is run by close friends Rob Quilty and
other Ontario craft breweries – cans you’d
Rob Rappolt (or ‘Rob One’ and ‘Rob Two’, as
have a hard time locating at any common
Chris will label them when lining them up for
LCBO. I place the basket on the counter
their portraits for this piece). It's a topnotch
– confident in my choices – and stride to
addition to the region. And a fantastic space,
the food section where I select a hunk of
Mountainoak Chili Pepper gouda and a bag of 3 Gen Organics Honey Garlic pepperettes.
Exposed brick walls, timber-raftered ceilings,
‘Okay,’ I laugh to Chris as I head back to the
and original hardwood floors intermingle with
counter to cash out, ‘I think I’ve got everything
more contemporary herringbone tile, white
I need – for the time being, at least.’
paint, and minimalist furniture in a perfect dance that delights the eye. While much of
A FEW B REW S T H A T CA U G HT O U R E Y E S : BLOOD LIGHT Pale ale, 4.5%
Blood Brothers Brewing Toronto LEMON SHAPESHIFTER++
Sour IPA w/ lemon, vanilla & lactose, 6.5%
Pale ale, 5%
Dominion City Brewing Co. Ottawa
Halo Brewery Toronto JUICEBOX IPA, 5.5%
Bandit Brewery Toronto
Peach green tea lemonade sour, 5%
Town Brewery Whitby
menagerie: Cashmere Single hop pale ale, 5.4%
Fairweather Brewing Hamilton
Farm League x Wave Maker Cambridge
Fine Balance Brewing Kingston
Grisette w/sumac, lemon verbena, 3.8%
Citra DIPA, 8%
Rob Rappolt & Rob Quilty
the shop’s interior design is familiar enough
different beers, ciders, wines, and spirits.’ He
(the space used to house Blackwing Coffee
continues: ‘And because I’m sourcing direct
Bar before COVID forced it under), the two
from the breweries themselves, the beer
Robs have certainly managed to put their
is fresh.’ I grab a beautifully-designed can
stamp on it, both figuratively and literally. The
from Fine Balance Brewing out of Kingston
place’s logo is imprinted in large scale on one
and note the scribble on the side of the label
of its freshly-painted white walls. Hung on the
indicating that it was packaged less than a
lovely exposed brick wall opposite is a vintage
week ago. It doesn’t get much fresher than
sign that reads ‘Galt’.
And then there's that whole wall of fridges.
Once Robert (Quilty – or ‘Rob One’) has checked me out at the cash, Chris and I head
Robert describes them. ‘This fridge is filled
for the door. ‘Not so fast,’ we hear him say,
with IPAs,’ he tells us, ‘while this fridge is
‘I have something amazing I want you to try
stocked with lighter fare – pilsners, sours,
before you go.’ At his invitation, we take a
seltzers, cocktails.’ The list goes on. Robert’s
seat on the front patio, at one of the picnic-
enthusiasm is palpable. As is mine. Indeed,
style tables shaded from the sun, where
the OG Bottleshop reminds me more than
Robert offers us fresh pretzels and dijon – as
a little of similar spaces I’ve loved visiting on
well as a couple pints poured from the taps
my travels in other provinces and south of
inside. ‘Think of the pretzels as representative
the border. I spot brews from almost all my
of the larger menu we’ll be introducing over
favourite breweries – Willibald, Bandit, Halo,
the course of the next few months,’ Robert
Fairweather, Grain & Grit – all on one wall.
tells us. (The plan is to have Lily Ruth Catering
‘We carry over twenty different breweries,’
provide a fuller menu – soon.) ‘The beers,
Robert tells us, 'and nearly two hundred
however, are already pouring and available
something for them to enjoy.’ I chuckle at the
for consumption on the patio any time we’re
suggestion. Chris and I both know that the
open.’ Patio. After the lockdown of these past
beers won’t last 'til the end of the week.
several months, that word has taken on a particular, enticing radiance.
As we're leaving, we can't help but notice Galt’s retro-styled Dickson Field ballpark
Set to capture the moment's gleam, Chris
– a most picturesque baseball diamond
positions Robert and me on one of the
just across the street – serves as a hipster
outdoor tables for a beer and pretzel shoot.
backdrop to this place, and, although we
With the pretzels positioned between the
cannot see the Grand River from here, how
two of us, I grab one of the beers Robert
we can hear the water crashing over the dam
has brought outside for Chris and me to
at the Cambridge Mill. Summer. Sweet.
taste. ‘It’s Strawberry Gelato Sour from Fine Balance,’ he a nnounces. The other brew he’s
And made even sweeter by this new addition
poured for the patio: Greenwood IPA from
to our region: a beer lover's ultimate
Left Field. Both are distinctive and delicious –
and available in cans to-go. We add some to the basket. ‘For the office beer fridge,’ Chris remarks. ‘After all, hopefully we’ll be able to have clients visit in-person soon. We’ll want
OLD GALT BOTTLE SHOP 135 GEORGE ST N UNIT 100, CAMBRIDGE
144 GOOS E ' R I P P P LE /WATE R S TU D IE S ' B Y CA i SE P U L iS
C O C K TAI L HO UR WITH BARTENDER & MIXOLOGIST KATIE SHEWAN
THERE ARE FEW THINGS MORE REFRESHING THAN A SPARKLING HOP WATER ON A SUMMER DAY. WANNA TAKE IT UP A NOTCH? GET CREATIVE BY USING ONE OF WELLINGTON BREWERY’S HOP WATERS AS A MIX TO CREATE A TASTY COCKTAIL. WHETHER YOU’RE KEEN TO CRAFT A SPIRIT-BASED DRINK OR NON-ALCOHOLIC VERSION, THIS RECIPE FOR A ‘SUMMER THYME SPRITZ’ IS ONE YOU'RE SURE TO ENJOY. GIDDY UP.
‘SUMMER THYME SPRITZ’ Method: Muddle, shake, fine strain, top Glass: Collins/Highball 1 sprig of thyme, muddled 1oz gin or non-alcoholic gin (or omit altogether) 1oz fresh-squeezed grapefruit juice 0.5oz lemon juice 1oz simple syrup
Wellington Brewery Sparkling Hop Water ice Garnish: grapefruit wheel & thyme sprig Method: Add muddled thyme, gin (or not), grapefruit juice, lemon juice, simple syrup and ice to a cocktail shaker – and shake contents. Rim your glass with grapefruit wedge and sugar. Add ice to glass, then fine strain shaker contents into glass. Top with hop water. Garnish with grapefruit wheel and thyme sprig. And enjoy.
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