Eatdrink #76 March/April 2019

The Women's Issue. Local food & drink magazine serving London, Stratford & Southwestern Ontario since 2007.

The Women's Issue. Local food & drink magazine serving London, Stratford & Southwestern Ontario since 2007.


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Issue #76 | March/April 2019


The LOCAL Food & Drink Magazine









Eleanor Kane


Stratford Chefs School

Serving London, Stratford & Southwestern Ontario since 2007


2 | March/April 2019

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#nextgen chefs are here










4 | March/April 2019

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The LOCAL Food & Drink Magazine





Think Global. Read Local.


Chris McDonell – chris@eatdrink.ca

Managing Editor Cecilia Buy – cbuy@eatdrink.ca

Food Editor Bryan Lavery – bryan@eatdrink.ca

Copy Editor Kym Wolfe

Social Media Editor Bryan Lavery – bryan@eatdrink.ca

Advertising Sales Chris McDonell – chris@eatdrink.ca

Bryan Lavery – bryan@eatdrink.ca

Stacey McDonald – stacey@eatdrink.ca

Terry-Lynn “TL” Sim – TL@eatdrink.ca


Ann Cormier – finance@eatdrink.ca


Chris McDonell, Cecilia Buy


Jane Antoniak, Gerry Blackwell,

Tanya Chopp, Darin Cook,

Gary Killops, Nancy Loucks-McSloy,

Bryan Lavery, George Macke,

Sue Sutherland Wood

Photographers Bruce Fyfe, Steve Grimes

Telephone & Fax 519-434-8349

Mailing Address 525 Huron Street, London ON N5Y 4J6


City Media, Cecilia Buy


Sportswood Printing


Eleanor Kane of Stratford

is the co-founder of the

the nationally renowned

Stratford Chefs School

and a 2018 recipient

of an Ontario Senior

Achievement Award.

Photo Courtesy of

Stratford Chefs School

© 2019 Eatdrink Inc. and the writers.

All rights reserved.

Reproduction or duplication of any material published in Eatdrink

or on Eatdrink.ca is strictly prohibited without the written permission

of the Publisher. Eatdrink has a printed circulation of 20,000

issues published six times annually in each of two markets, for a total

of 240,000 copies in print. The views or opinions expressed in the

information, content and/or advertisements published in Eatdrink

or online are solely those of the author(s) and do not necessarily

represent those of the Publisher. The Publisher welcomes submissions

but accepts no responsibility for unsolicited material.

Serving up



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Issue #76 | March/April 2019

The Second Annual Women’s Issue

Publisher’s Notes


The Women’s Issue Redux

Our Second Annual Celebration




Remembering Michèle Bosc

A Champion of Ontario Wine





London Women in Food (2019)

Ten Talented Women Making

a Difference



Stratford Women in Food (2019)

Seven Sisters with a Seat at the Table



Elgin Women in Food (2019)

Six Women Leading the Way



Sarnia-Lambton/Huron County

Women in Food (2019)

Entrepreneurs in Good Taste




A Delicious Destination

The Village Teapot, in Ilderton




If You Love it, Do it

Women in Beer









I Feel it Coming

Upcoming Musical Highlights




Dabbling in Wonderful

Donna Feore on Work, Parenting

& Inspiration




Culinary Community Notes

New and Notable



Tea for More than Two

A Literary Tea Party

Review by DARIN COOK


The Lighter Side

Home is Where the Hygge Is




eatdrink: The Local Food & Drink Magazine

March/April 2019 | 7


For Our Famous Easter Buffet

April 21


Reserve NOW for Our Famous Gourmet


Sunday, May 12




8 | March/April 2019

Publisher’s Notes

eatdrink.ca |@eatdrinkmag

The Women’s Issue Redux

Our Second Annual Celebration


There was no doubt that we would

reprise our efforts to celebrate

women in our culinary

community after we received

such a warm reception last year. As I

noted then, while there has not been a

single issue of Eatdrink ever published

that didn’t acknowledge important

contributions from women, the time

had come to be more intentional and

overt about that. Not that there weren’t

some complaints, but by and large

those disagreements surrounded

the omissions we made, not who was profiled.

Then, as now, there was just no way to include

Eatdrink #70, March/April 2018

all of the women worthy of celebration.

The only helpful criteria that we could

strictly employ in this round was to

choose an entirely different list. I

encourage you to avail yourself of our

extensive online archive of magazines

and articles on our website. Visit

Issue #70 or search “women” and you

can reread our profiles of a stalwart

group that would easily qualify as

outstanding candidates in 2019. I’m

not certain when a woman

will be chosen to be profiled in

this annual issue a second time, but for now

previous selections are disqualified.



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eatdrink: The Local Food & Drink Magazine

We have once again chosen a geographical

focus for our groupings of women, and we’ve

expanded the list to include four regions. Each

writer has taken a slightly different approach,

but I believe you will agree that this makes for

more interesting reading. The biggest challenge,

again, is tight space considerations, but we

have endeavored to give readers a sense of what

makes these women significant contributors to

our local food and drink culture.

It is International Women’s Day on March

8, but we’ll be celebrating this Eatdrink for a

couple of months. We hope we might inspire

similar efforts to honour the women in our

lives, spanning the entire year. Let’s continue

to do our best, respect the #metoo movement

and political action for equality, and stand up

for the most vulnerable women in our society.

Many of them are in the hospitality industry,

and in food production, and exciting changes

are happening in these arenas. Support them.

We’ve continued our Women’s theme

throughout the magazine. Our restaurant

profile of The Village Teapot is a highlight for

me, as it is a quintessential women’s story

as much as it is about a small town café. Our

March/April 2019 | 9

wine column is a remembrance and I am

certain I won’t be the only one to wish I had

known Michèle Bosc. Everyone excited about

the craft beer renaissance will appreciate the

insights on the industry from four young

women currently immersed in it. The future

looks bright, and will not be denied.

Jane Antoniak’s interview of choreographer

Donna Feore veers off the topic of the theatre

in the way good conversations always do,

circling back to the subject at hand but with

myriad related thoughts shared. And our

Lighter Side is another insightful musing from

Sue Sutherland Wood, leaving us with the

same sense of hygge (that’s all explained in the

story!) that she writes about.

I can’t reflect about women without acknowledging

my wife Sue, my mother Nora, my

daughter Tara, my five sisters Anne, Carolyn,

Marjorie, Barb and Janet, and the women that

make Eatdrink tick: Cecilia, Ann, Stacey, TL,

Kym, Tracy, Tanya, Jane, Nancy and the other

writers. Your strength is appreciated, and

infectious, and I am grateful for you.



Show your Mom some love this Mother’s Day with a gift of Downtown Dollars.

10 | March/April 2019

eatdrink.ca |@eatdrinkmag


London Women in Food (2019)

Ten Talented Women Making a Difference


Photo by Alieska Robles, alieskarobles.com

Tabitha Bartlett

Co-Owner/Operator,La Noisette Bakery & Deli

“I grew up in a family that ate meat and

potatoes,” says Tabitha Bartlett, co-owner/

operator of La Noisette Bakery and Deli. “I

started experimenting with different foods

when I was about 10 — basic, but I had fun

with it. I reached a point where I couldn’t

teach myself anymore… I might be aging

myself, but it was before YouTube and Google

were the go-to for recipes. So I enrolled in the

culinary program at Fanshawe.”

Tabitha Bartlett & her daughter

Fast forward through graduating with a

diploma in Culinary Management, working

in the industry for more than 15 years, and

managing a large chain restaurant, all the

while holding tight to “massive dreams of one

day opening my own place.” Almost five years

ago she finally did, with business partner Dave

Coulter, an experienced Cordon Bleu chef.

“I love that food brings people together, it’s

common ground — no matter who you are or

what you do, where you’re from, you need to

eat. One good meal really can open up good

conversation,” says Bartlett. “When I was

very young, my grandparents nearly opened

their own restaurant. It never happened, but I

thought it was so cool at the time. It came back

to mind when I was talking to my mother about

growth for our business and what the next

year may hold for us, and she told me that my

grandfather would’ve been so proud of me. All

the memories of the restaurant-that-never-was

came rolling back. So now I feel a new sense of

purpose for what I do.”

Chandany Chen

Pastry Chef, Abruzzi Ristorante

Chandany Chen’s first degree was in Science,

and when she graduated she worked for a

while doing research for a company that

produced fertilizer. But she quickly realized,

“it was not for me. I only wish I had figured

that out a lot sooner!” Back to school she

went, and has since graduated from Fanshawe

College’s Culinary Management program

and worked in kitchens in London and Port

Stanley before moving to Abbruzzi Ristorante

a year and a half ago.

“I am currently the pastry chef at Abruzzi and

Chandany Chen

eatdrink: The Local Food & Drink Magazine

will also be the pastry chef at Abruzzi’s sister

restaurant, Taverna 1331, when it opens later

this year,” says Chen. “When the chance presents

itself, I also search for ways to contribute to the

community as a volunteer with Growing Chefs!

as a food educator for school visits or as a chef

for the cooking classes.”

Chen has been a foodie from birth, she

says. In her Cambodian household growing

up, “we always had people in the house and

everyone helped cook, from scratch, then we

would enjoy the meal together. I always had

an artistic side, too. Now I see every plate

as a canvas, and I just want to try to make

something beautiful out of it.”

“I’d like to learn more, and I’m compiling a list

of restaurants I would like to work in and pastry

chefs that I would like to learn from,” she adds.

“I’d like to bring those skills back to London.”

Alexandra Connon

Owner, The Boombox Bakeshop

“I was taught how to bake by my late father

Fred, and inspired by his passion for all things

culinary,” says Alexandra Connon. After

years of research and experimentation, she

combined her father’s dream of operating a

food establishment with her knowledge of

vegan baking and business management, and

opened The Boombox Bakeshop and café in

2014. She also threw her passion for music

into the mix. “You’ll never catch us without

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tunes playing while we are busy baking and

serving up drinks and treats,” she says.

For the first four years the bakeshop

specialized in vegan desserts — mainly

cupcakes and mini-pies, along with a few

seasonal goodies — but recently added

savoury baked goods to the menu. “We always

wanted to expand our menu to include lunch

items, but we had space constraints,” says

Connon. “Since we moved to our new space

(on Adelaide Street at Princess Avenue) we

have a larger kitchen and, one year in, we are

ready to branch out.”

The first offering, a mushroom and

lentil pot pie, was an instant hit with both

vegan and non-vegan clients, she says, and

customers can expect to see more options

going forward. “The Boombox Bakeshop has

been shaped by the Old East Village and vegan

communities, and we will always be a vegan

shop — there is no meat, dairy or eggs on the

premises. Our goal is to make great tasting

vegan food for everyone to enjoy.”

Margaret Coons

Owner, Nuts for Cheese

“I started experimenting with nut cheeses

when I worked as a chef at the vegan

restaurant Veg Out,” says Margaret Coons,

owner and self-described “big cheese” at

Nuts for Cheese. “The restaurant kitchen was

actually my first production facility — I used

to rent it after the restaurant closed and stay

Margaret Coons

eatdrink.ca |@eatdrinkmag

up through the night to create my cheeses.”

Cheese-making might seem like an odd fit

for someone with a BA in English Literature,

but Coons is also a trained and certified vegan

chef. “I became a vegetarian when I was 12 and

started experimenting with food and cooking

for myself at a young age,” she says. “The

process of mindfully creating and delighting

in food helps me stay rooted in the whole

reason behind my business: a love of good,

shared food.”

Nuts for Cheese crafts dairy-free and vegan

cheeses from cultured organic cashews. “I

experimented with sunflower seeds, hemp

hearts and miso, but I ended up sticking with

cashews because they are really versatile,” says

Coons. “Getting the texture and mouthful

feeling just right is both a science and an

art. For people who cannot or choose not to

consume dairy, finding something to replace

that rich, savoury experience of cheese is a

challenging journey.”

Her cheeses seem to have hit the mark,

with word-of-mouth propelling distribution to

stores across Ontario and into Quebec. “The

rate at which we’ve grown has definitely been

a huge manufacturing challenge,” says Coons,

who is proud to note that all products are still

hand-crafted, right here in London.

Michele Lenhardt

Pastry Chef, Rhino Lounge Bakery & Coffee

Shoppe, Museum London

“For me baking is an art form,” says Michele

Lenhardt, whose passion for pasty-as-art has

led her to positions as pastry chef in decidedly

artistic settings — first at the Art Gallery of

Ontario, and now at the Rhino Lounge Bakery

& Coffee Shoppe at Museum London. After

moving to London 12 years ago she created the

Black Walnut Bakery Café in Wortley Village,

which she owned and operated for five years

before moving to her current position.

“The most satisfying aspect of cooking and

baking for me is creative experimentation

and recipe development,” says Lenhardt, who

studied Baking and Pastry Arts at George

Brown College as well as Advanced French

Patisserie. “It will often take two or three

times to get it to where I want it to be. One

of my specialties is the vegan donuts that

I created for the Rhino.” They have proven

to be popular, and are now also available

at Locomotive Café — but only on Fridays.

Lenhardt also produces pastries for Jess

Jazey-Spoelstra’s North Moore Catering, The

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Michele Lenhardt

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When she’s not in the kitchen Lenhardt

enjoys vintage shopping, for everything from

clothing and housewares to artwork. And she

has recently started working on a plant-based

cookbook that will include all sorts of comfort

foods. “I’m pretty passionate about plant-based

cooking,” she says, and she’s enjoying the

process of experimenting and developing the

recipes. “I just started, so it’s a year or two away.”

Jodie Marshall

Co-owner, Marshall’s Pasta and Bakery

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Applied Science, majoring in Consumer

Behaviour; Blake played professional football

with the Edmonton Eskimos; both come from

families that had their own businesses. So

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perhaps it’s not surprising that in their post-

CFL life the Marshalls would want to start a

business themselves, that Jodie would handle

the human relations and marketing, and that

one of their biggest client groups would be

local sports teams.

Marshall’s Pasta Mill opened in 1995. Ten

years ago the couple purchased Lusitania

Bakery and moved their pasta business

into the Adelaide Street store. With the

complementary businesses under one roof,

Marshall’s became a one-stop shop for a

full pasta dinner with the fixings, offering a

variety of fresh pastas and sauces, Portuguese

breads, prepared meals, lasagna, soups,

meatballs and more.

Jodie runs the daily operations, from school

hot lunches and group fundraising events, to

walk-in customers and catering orders. There

is also a wholesale side of the business that

delivers freshly baked bread to local restaurants.

“The two things that I find most satisfying

about my job are that we make really good

healthy food that people love, and that we are

able to help others in our community,” says

Jodie. “I am involved with different social

justice committees and Marshall’s supports

many charitable organizations. Helping

others, whether it is through my business or

in my personal life, is the most important

thing for me.”

Michelle Pierce Hamilton

Owner, The Tea Lounge & beTeas

When Michelle Pierce Hamilton worked in

the financial and banking industry she visited

tea places in different parts of the world, and

was quite taken with the artistry and love

demonstrated by the tea masters. “You just feel

so peaceful,” she says. She started to seriously

study tea when people who were close to her

Michelle Pearce Hamilton

eatdrink.ca |@eatdrinkmag

were diagnosed with chronic diseases, and she

realized that constant travel and unhealthy

eating and lifestyle were taking a toll on her

and her family. “I felt a lack of control, and

almost immediately I stopped smoking and

eating fast food, and I started studying tea as a

replacement for coffee, because I always had a

warm beverage in my hand.”

After training as a Nutritionist and a

Certified Tea Sommelier she launched beTeas

in 2010. The site educates people about the

health benefits of tea, and the online store

sells quality loose leaf teas, tisanes and

functional tea ware. Teas are sourced from

around the world, with a focus on single estate

and artisanal teas from origin.

Two years ago Pierce Hamilton opened The

Tea Lounge on Piccadilly Street and created

“the place I always wished I could go to” right

here in London. Some of the décor comes

from a Toronto restaurant that was run by her

birth father. “His was the first Indo-Pakistani

restaurant in Toronto,” she says. “He was never

able to see the Tea Lounge in person before he

passed away last year, but I had Skyped from

there a few times, and he was delighted.”

Dee Spencer

Owner, The Donut Diva Mini Donut Food Truck

A self-described “Professional Donutologist”,

Dee Spencer has developed over 50 different

recipes for her mini-donuts, ranging from

basic to gourmet flavours like cheesecake or

‘BetterTart’ (because it tastes better than

butter tart, she says). You’ll find her selling

her sweet treats out of Donut Diva food truck

at different locations, mainly in London.

She posts her changing whereabouts on her

facebook page (fb.com/thedonutdiva)

“I have been in the industry for about 35 years

with jobs varying from server to general manager

to corporate trainer and have always been

an outside-of-the-box kind of gal,” says Spencer.

“When I moved back to Ontario from Alberta

and was looking at what I wanted to do I happened

upon an episode of Dragons’ Den where

a BC entrepreneur was pitching a Waffle Wagon

franchise opportunity. After further investigation

I decided that I could do something like that

myself, and having loved mini-donuts at fairs

out west I decided that was my niche.”

She got her business rolling (literally!)

in 2011. The Donut Diva Mini Donut Food

Truck is equipped with a fryer where Spencer

makes mini-donuts to order and serve them

up warm, sprinkled with whichever sugary

eatdrink: The Local Food & Drink Magazine

Dee Spencer

topping the customer chooses. “They’re cake

donuts, so they’re light and fluffy,” she says.

Spencer is active in the London Food Truck

Association, and says, “I am very proud of

our Association as we are a group of elite

professionals who believe in celebrating each

other’s successes and working together to

further the Food Truck culture in London.”

Krista Trollope

Owner and Cake Artist, Hey, Cupcake!

Up until 11 years ago Krista Trollope worked

full time in accounting and did baking and

cake decorating as a hobby. “I started making

custom cakes the year that myself and all

my childhood friends reached one of our

milestone birthdays. They all loved them,

and said that I should start selling them,” she

recalls. “I realized that the style of custom

cakes I was creating — one-of-a-kind edible

pieces of art with elaborate design and

detailing — were not what people would



Krista Trollope

Open 7 Days a Week

Mon/Tues 11:30-10, Wed/Thurs 11:30-11, Fri/Sat 11:30-12, Sun 11-10

16 | March/April 2019

eatdrink.ca |@eatdrinkmag

walk in to purchase every day. So I decided to

feature cupcakes, and I chose this location (on

Wharncliffe Road) due to the proximity with

Western, where I knew that a lot of students

would be my main walk-in customers.”

“Hey Cupcake was the first gourmet cupcake

bakery in the city. Our slogan is ‘where art is a

piece of cake’, and we still do custom cakes as

well as cupcakes and cookies,” says Trollope.

“In the beginning it was all self-taught, but

now I have studied under many celebrity cake

artists like Ron Ben-Israel, Susan Trianos,

Karen Portelao and James Russell.”

For Trollope, “The best part of my job is that

I am afforded the opportunity to bring a smile

to someone’s face just by using my hands, heart

and artistry.” That includes working with Make-

A-Wish, handing out cupcakes to children,

caregivers and families at LHSC’s annual

World Wish Day event, and her involvement

in the Parkinson’s annual fundraising event

Signatures: A Taste Test of London’s Best.

Shauna Versloot

Chef & Coach/Owner, The Live Well Community

“When I was eight years old my mom was

diagnosed with stage-4 breast cancer. As

an only child I was so scared to lose her. A

doctor said to me ‘Try to be as healthy as you

can so that you don’t get sick someday’ and

I took that to heart. Fitness, nutrition and

healthy cooking became my life,” says Shauna

Versloot, chef, coach and owner of The Live

Well Community.

With education in Fitness and Lifestyle

Management (George Brown College),

Nutrition and Psychology (Western

University), and Culinary Arts (Fanshawe

College), a National Coaching Certification,

and a culinary apprenticeship at the London

Hunt and Country Club, Versloot combined

Shauna Versloot &

daughter Tenley

her passions for fitness and foods to create

Live Well Community, with her husband Dan.

“I realized over the years that the keys

to success were all about balance and living

well,” she says. The Versloots are passionate

about living a healthy lifestyle, and have built

a community of like-minded people who

participate in Live Well’s workouts, cooking

classes and community events. “I feel like life

throws curveballs at us that we can’t control

— like cancer — but we can control our

health and enjoyment of life to some extent.”

Versloot’s first food memories are of

picking vegetables in her grandfather’s

garden and helping her grandmother with

family dinners. “My vegetable garden is still

my biggest hobby to this day and preparing

and sharing a meal with others — which is

basically what we do in our cooking classes —

is one of my favourite things to do.”

KYM WOLFE is freelance writer based in London.

Exceptional Food. Outstanding Service.

Photo by Alieska Robles, alieskarobles.com




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March/April 2019 | 17

18 | March/April 2019

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A Delicious Destination

The Village Teapot, in Ilderton




tea trend


British pub food in

an historic Ontario

village house in

Ilderton with the

arrival of The Village

Teapot. Add a splash

of craft beer, wine and

the occasional roast

supper inside a cozy two-room parlour and

you have the makings of a relaxing experience.

The venture is the result of a new business

partnership between two self-declared “moms”,

Gaynor Deeks and Jana Yassine. They met

through their children, who attended the same

Oakridge neighbourhood school in London,

developed a friendship and discovered they

both had a passion for cooking. Deeks had

operated a home daycare while Yassine was a

full-time stay-at-home parent after managing a

London hotel. Both had some customer service

background and so when Deeks’s employment

was winding down, they decided that the years

of talking about opening a restaurant was ready

to go to the next level.

In early spring of 2017 they assumed the

lease on an empty restaurant in an 1800s

building in Ilderton

after “falling in love

with the house” says

Deeks. Their families

pitched in to help

renovate the space,

adding an accent of

red throughout, with

seating for 32. The

hardwood floors and

simple tables provide a

cheery atmosphere.

The Village Teapot

opened in June 2017

and the new business

owners say they

quickly learned their

first hard lesson. “Get

your feet wet first

and learn the ropes of

your business before

your grand opening,”

says Yassine. Deeks

nods enthusiastically

in agreement. “Do a

soft opening,” is her

advice to other first-time restaurant owners.

However, neither have any regrets despite the

exhaustion of serving 90 people in the first few

hours of opening their doors. “I would just say

go for it,” says Yassine. “We could have sat back

with many reasons why we shouldn’t do it but

we jumped in. We are confident we have a good

product and, as they say, if you build it they will

come,” she adds.

They humbly describe their food as “honest

and simple” but it is far more delightful then

they give themselves credit for. Their signature

scones are light and airy, served warm in several

flavours: cheddar chive, raisin, cranberry

lemon and plain. These are high quality, flavourful

biscuit-like cakes that can be ordered

on their own or as part of a Cream Tea service

which includes clotted cream and preserves.

The scones are also

served alongside

homemade soups, and

sold for take-away by

the dozen.

Cornish pasty are

also house-made.

These famous British

“all in one meal”

pastry pockets are

stuffed with a variety

of fillings including

ground beef with

vegetables; spinach

March/April 2019 | 19

and feta; sausage, scrambled egg, cheese and mushroom;

and a vegetarian version that includes leeks, potatoes and

seasonings in a creamy sauce.

Another traditional British staple, the simple yet satisfying

sausage roll, is a popular menu item which is also available for

take-away. The duo also sell their sausage rolls and scones at

the Ilderton Farmer’s Market in season. They are busy outside

of the teahouse hours with catering.

A traditional tea triple platter and a ploughman’s lunch is

a lovely way to experience the Teapot’s yummy slow-roasted

ham sandwiches alongside devilled egg, artisan cheeses

with chutney, pickled onion, veggies with dip and desserts

including Shaw’s Ice Cream, butter tarts, cookies and more.

No afternoon tea is complete without a wide choice of

teas. The Village Teapot offers at least 10 specialty teas in

silk pyramid tea bags to enhance flavor release, served in

individual red pots. “I feel like I’m in a candy store, taking

the teas out of the jars”, says Deeks as she happily fills pots

from the high bar counter. They also offer French press coffee,

local craft beers and wines as well as sodas. Special occasion

seasonal teas are planned for Easter and Mother’s Day. “Tea is

really coming back with the younger age group,” says Yassine.

A roast dinner is offered the first Sunday of the month. Past

dinners have featured a traditional roast beef, lamb, and turkey.

Both Deeks and Yassine share the cooking and front of

house service roles with help from one staff member. This past

year they had the honour of hosting CBC London Morning for

a live remote broadcast. As well, they have put on a fashion

show, bridal showers and hosted the popular Red Hat Society.

Now, after almost a year in business, the women say what

they enjoy most is the friendships they have made with

customers, and being their own bosses. Their other advice to

new business partners? “Make sure you really like each other,”

says Yassine with a laugh. It is clear these two are successfully

managing friendship with entrepreneurship while providing a

delicious new destination.

The Village Teapot

13257 Ilderton Road, Ilderton

519-298-TEAS (8327)

villageteapot@gmail.com • www.thevillageteapot.ca

wednesday to thursday: 10:30 am–3:30 pm

friday: 10:30 am–7:30 pm

saturday and sunday: 10 am–2 pm

closed monday and tuesday

JANE ANTONIAK is a regular contributor to Eatdrink and Communications

Manager at King’s University College.

BRUCE FYFE is a frequent photographer for Eatdrink and Head, User

Experience & User Services, Western Libraries for Western University.

TOP: Gaynor Deeks and Jana Yassine behind the counter at

The Village Teapot in Ilderton.

MIDDLE: The Ploughman’s Lunch: slow-roasted ham, artisan

cheeses, pickled onion, crusty bread, fresh fruit.

BOTTOM: Shaw’s ice cream served in a vintage teacup.

20 | March/April 2019

eatdrink.ca |@eatdrinkmag


Stratford Women in Food (2019)

Seven Sisters with a Seat at the Table



tratford has no

shortage of outstanding


who have made

inroads into a milieu that

has been traditionally maledominated.

Many Stratford

women come to their

professions, in part, with

dedication to improving

the world through access

to food. The following list

of culinary stalwarts is just

the tip of the iceberg.

Anne Campion

Anne Campion

Owner & Barista, revel

Anne Campion is committed to the core values

of social justice by procuring and serving

ethically and sustainably produced direct

trade coffee. She can be seen pulling espresso

shots or making consistently perfect cortados

at revel, her busy coffee shop off Stratford’s

Market Square. Behind the scene, she’s

ensuring that her business is modelling all

aspects of the ethical culinary conversation.

“Our desire to be for the

good of our community,

both locally and globally,

informs all our decisions,”

says Campion.

Launched with the

assistance of just two staff

people, Campion now

employs 18. In addition to

baristas and front of house

staff, two pastry chefs now

bake all of Revel’s pastries

in house, using products

from many local farmers.

A formative coffee relationship

with Las Chicas

Dee Christensen

del Cafe (read about the

sisters behind this business

in our “Elgin Women in Food”

story in this issue), who developed

signature Nicaraguan

blends for revel, continues,

while a new association with

transcend coffee + roastery

in Edmonton, AB (founded in

2006 by Poul Mark) is opening

doors for new growth.

Working with transcend’s

green buyer, Josh Hockin,

and an all-female roasting

team led by Kate Sortland has

allowed an expansion of revel’s

exclusive coffee offerings. In

the fall of 2018, Don Moncho

from Costa Rica was featured. This winter,

Rudy Perez from Guatemala was introduced.

There will soon be another new coffee from

Costa Rica, and Campion is especially excited

about bringing in an exclusive coffee from

Ethiopia later this spring.

Building direct trade relationships with

coffee growers through her partnerships with

Las Chicas del Cafe and transcend coffee, and

joining forces with other

businesses to support local

community initiatives, is as

fundamental to Campion’s

business as ensuring the

proper brew and pour of the

next great cup of coffee at


Dee Christensen

Owner, The Planet Diner

Restaurateur Dee Christensen

is a writer, social advocate

and the former owner/editorin-chief

of Recovery Wire

Magazine, a leading addiction

magazine. Christensen used

eatdrink: The Local Food & Drink Magazine

her life experience as well as an academic

background in Criminology and Social Work

to establish the common interest publication.

Fortified with hospitality experience and a

background that includes experience as a

financial manager for the field of commercial

design and a Commercial Investment Analyst,

Christensen conceptualized and opened The

Planet Diner in 2018. With red metal flake

upholstered booths and a 1950s vibe, the

26-seat carnivore-friendly vegan diner with a

14-seat seasonal patio is warm and welcoming

with enthusiastic and well-informed staff.

Christensen says, “This is where herbivores can

bring their carnivore friends.” Most items on

the menu are derived from plant-based foods

with a few meat-based options. The fledgling

diner has been a success since it opened.

Michelle Hern

Owner, Olive Your Favourites

Michelle Hern became an entrepreneur later in

life after already having had a successful career.

Nearly a decade ago, while visiting her sister

in Traverse City, Michigan, Hern discovered

an upscale speciality shop offering unique

and exceptional quality extra virgin olive

oils (EVOO) sourced from around the world.

Customers were invited to taste oils before

purchasing from stainless containers called

fustis. On subsequent visits, she would sample

and purchase oils and vinegars that she offered

to her friends and colleagues to taste. In the

spring of 2011 while eating a salad prepared

with the oils and vinegars she had purchased,

she noticed the supplier’s contact information

on the bottle and decided to contact them.

Hern ended up talking to the CEO of the

company and made pages of notes. Looking



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22 | March/April 2019

for an entrepreneurial opportunity she began

a laborious mission to find a perfect location

for a store. With equal parts determination

and passion she found the optimal location on

York Street facing the Avon River to showcase

her products. Olive Your Favourites carries

dozens of types of EVOO, some infused

with pure fruits and herbs, as well as dark

and white balsamic vinegars. The latter are

also pure products and made from grapes

in Modena, Italy. Hern’s knowledgeable and

down-to-earth approach and the ability to

hire friendly, intelligent and well-versed

sales personnel have led the business to

tremendous success.

Buffy Illingworth

Owner, Edison Café Bar

Buffy Illingworth’s mother Gail, an early

advocate for vegetarianism and plant-based

cuisine, graduated from Stratford Chef

School’s in 1986. Gail held many respected

chef positions in area restaurants before her

passing in 2005. It was a love she passed on

to her daughter. “Her passion for the culinary

arts and expertise in food styling continues to

inspire me,” says Illingworth.

The sophisticated and cozy Edison Café

Bar opened in October 2016 after months

of renovations by Illingworth and her

husband Greg Kuepfer. “I pulled from all my

passions when creating Edison Café Bar,” says

Illingworth who envisioned a whole foods

café with a menu focused on clean eating.

The result is innovative, compact and stylish,

where patrons can feel good about what they

are eating and drinking.

Although Illingworth and Kuepfer can

both boast a long relationship with food,

it was Illingworth’s background in Design

and Holistic Nutrition that inspired them

Buffy Illingworth

eatdrink.ca |@eatdrinkmag

to open Edison’s. Illingworth took her time

researching cafés, sourcing the best suppliers

and creating the sophisticated interior.

Born and raised in Stratford, Illingworth

is no stranger to business. With a formal

education in Horticulture and Garden Design,

she operated her own thriving flower shop,

designing floral arrangements for hundreds

of weddings and events. The couple’s children

all have played an integral role in helping to

shape the family business. “We keep hours

that reflect a well-balanced work week and

allow us to be home for dinner with them

every night,” says Illingworth.

Eleanor Kane

Co-founder, Stratford Chefs School

Eleanor Kane is Ontario’s equivalent of

American culinary icon Alice Waters, a

comparison and opinion that is rooted in

watching her numerous achievements over

a 35-year period. In what began in 1977 as a

“self-directed sabbatical from work,” Kane

and business

partner Marion


opened The Old

Prune (then a

tea room) in

Stratford, which

led to successful

careers as


Later, with

James Morris

of Rundles


Kane co-founded

the Stratford

Chefs School, an

enterprise that

evolved into

Eleanor Kane

a widely recognized pioneering restaurantfocused

training program.

A University of Alberta graduate (Masters

of Science, Psychology), Kane also brought

decades of restaurant experience as well

as human resources skills to her work

at Stratford Chefs School. A recipient of

numerous accolades and awards, Kane

remains in an advisory capacity on the

Board. Recent Stratford Chef School’s

International Guest Chef in Residence, Ryan

Brown, described his immense respect for

Kane, with her elegance, strong presence,

and love for all things relating to gastronomy.

eatdrink: The Local Food & Drink Magazine

Carole Rowe

Carole Rowe

Owner, Watson’s Chelsea Bazaar

Watson’s Chelsea Bazaar is a long-standing

Stratford establishment, well known and

loved by many for its quirky mix of housewares


gifts. It

provides a

unique shopping


and is

friendly and

inviting. As

a “bazaar” it

has a little bit

of everything,

from useful


and European


ceramics to

glassware and

unusual finds

for your home. The proprietor of the shop is

Carole Rowe, the fourth generation of this

family business.

Started by Carole’s great grandfather in

1895, when he decided to leave undertaking

and embrace retail, the business has evolved

and taken some twists and turns over the

years. Today Rowe, along with dedicated staff

and family, works hard to bring it all together.

“We are aware, in this day and age, everything

can be bought online for the lowest price and

maximum convenience… Everything except

a unique experience,” says Rowe. “We try to

keep the essence of the store what it has always

been: old fashioned, in the best kind of way,

and always interesting.”

Rowe fondly remembers her dad, David

Bradshaw, always saying, “It’s a fun business,”

and for the most part, it has been. “I think my

great grandfather would be very pleased to

know that, almost 125 years later, the business

is still going strong and still fun,” says Rowe.

Shelley Windsor

Vice-President, Windsor Hospitality Inc.

Shelley Windsor is the Vice President Windsor

Hospitality Inc., co-owner of Mercer Kitchen/

Beer Hall /Hotel, The Prune Restaurant & Bar

One-Fifty-One as well as York Street Kitchen.

Windsor is the former owner of Best Western

The Parlour Historic Inn & Suites and owner/

director of Best Western London Airport Inn

Continued on page 26 ...




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Shelley Windsor

Continued from page 23 ...

and Suites. Having worked in just about every

operational position in a hotel, some of her

past positions have included Sales and Catering

Manager, Director of Human Resource

Services, Director of Sales, front desk clerk

and bed & breakfast owner/operator.

Windsor is also known for her community

involvement on volunteer boards and

committees, which have included the Stratford

Tourism Alliance, Stratford and District

Chamber of Commerce, Stratford Hockey

Club, and, as a Marketing Chair, Best Western

Ontario Quebec Co-op. Her philosophy of

giving back to the community where you

live and work has paid off by the support of

locals in many of the Windsor Hospitality’s

endeavours. Windsor’s day-to-day routine

includes being involved in the short and long

term planning of all of Windsor Hospitality

businesses, research and development for

new projects, human resources, customer

services and public relations, sales marketing

and social media. Windsor also specializes

in re-positioning restaurants to achieve a

healthier bottom line. Involved in hospitality

and food and beverage consulting for other

restaurants needing assistance, Windsor likes

to mentor other women in business.

Eatdrink Food Editor and Writer at Large BRYAN

LAVERY brings years of experience in the restaurant,

hospitality and tourism industry as a chef, restaurateur

and partner at the Lavery Culinary Group. He helps shape

Eatdrink both under his byline and behind the scenes.

eatdrink: The Local Food & Drink Magazine

March/April 2019 | 27


Elgin Women in Food (2019)

Six Women Leading the Way


We interviewed six visionary Elgin

County business owners on what

it’s like to be running creative

and challenging operations

in food, hospitality and agriculture. We also

asked them to describe women in business.

While no two answers were exactly the same,

there were some definite themes: Women in

business have to be as resilient as they are

driven, as passionate as they are nurturing

and creative. Together, these women represent

over a century of combined experience in food,

hospitality and farming. Every business is more

than a decade old, while some are nearing 40 or

50 years of operation.

Maria Fiallos and Val Fiallos-


Las Chicas Del Cafe, St. Thomas

Women in business, in three words:

“Passionate. Brave. Challenging.”

Val: When it comes to our business, what

lights my fire is knowing that failing is

not an option. We know how many people

depend on the business continuing. It’s

very close to us, from the relationships we

have to the small coffee growers that we

buy from, to seeing our grandfather and our

dad go through being coffee growers as well.

We’re so linked to their struggle.

Maria: For me, roasting is a mixture of

science and art. On the science side, there’s

the chemical changes that happen in the

coffee bean as you’re roasting, including

caramelization, and dehydration. You have

to understand how sugars behave, what

density, temperature and airflow can do

to influence your roast — and every bean,

depending on its origin.

Val: I think for us, one thing that

differentiates us is that not only are we

connected to the origin (part of the coffee

we bring in is from our dad’s farm), it’s also

the approach we take with our customers.

We’re very connected. It’s all personal.

This past harvest was a real challenge. We

didn’t finish receiving the harvest until

mid-November. However, having those

tight relationships with our coffee partners

was truly valuable. They were really

understanding, knowing that what going on

was beyond our control, but the quality of

the beans was still very important.

Maria: Personally, without sounding kind of

cheesy or cliché, what I do really doesn’t feel

like work, because there’s a greater purpose

to our day than simply getting coffee orders

out. Each day I’m thinking about the bigger

picture: how we do justice to the coffee

we’re roasting and make sure it’ll land in a

place where it’ll be appreciated. And I don’t

just mean that we want someone to think

it’s delicious, we also want customers to feel

Sisters Maria Fiallos, left,

and Val Fiallos-Soliman

28 | March/April 2019

that connection and that they’re proud to

have our coffee in their establishment.

Running your own business, being selfemployed,

is probably the most stressful.

Your everyday challenges can range

from big to absolutely terrifying. But,

when there’s a bigger picture — like Val

mentioned — there’s no option for us to

say that it just won’t work. So we’re always

focused on how we can get over the next

hump. I don’t get hung up on those small

everyday challenges because they’re really

just a small step to get onto bigger steps of

running a business.

Maria: When it comes to the impact we

hope to make, an important aspect of

the business for us is that we help foster

awareness. Sometimes, for people spending

$15 to $20 on a pound of coffee, it can seem

like a luxury item, but when you bring

forth everything that’s involved in that

pound of coffee and the repercussions,

from where it’s produced, to how baristas

are being paid, to how families who are

working on plantations can benefit from a

good market price, you can see how it’s a

win-win situation. Awareness offers a segue

into really caring more about the products

we consume in general, whether it’s meat

products, leather, food, coffee or more.

Val: We have a direct relationship with our

retailers and aim to be connected to our

consumers. So for us, it all comes down to

helping people to take that coffee home

and be absolutely in love with what they’re

tasting. That’s how we’ve been able to

really grow. We don’t have the finances and

resources and big marketing campaigns or

fancy packaging, but we’ve really focused

on offering quality coffee.

Kim Saunders

The Windjammer Inn, Port Stanley

Women in business, in three words: “Resilient.

Persistent. Nurturing.”

My work is my passion. I call it a lifestyle, not

a career. I love working with food and drinks,

experimenting, creating, feeding people —

discovering new ingredients, combinations,

exploring authentic recipes, and delving into

the rich culture of food. My work feeds my soul,

my heart, and my mind. It is never the same

day twice, which always keeps it interesting!

I work with a palette of tastes and textures

as well as colours and visuals. Every dish has

eatdrink.ca |@eatdrinkmag

Kim Saunders

a little of my heart and soul in it and although

the end results don’t physically last (hopefully

they get eaten!) the memory created is also

part of the art.

I feel whole when working in a kitchen. It

helps to balance and focus me. I love noticing

the nuances of a dish or ingredient as it comes

together, the sounds, smells, tastes and

sight of food and cooking comforts me and

energizes me. I find it truly satisfying at the

end of the day, knowing that I have put my

time and energy into something that affects

those around me in a productive, positive way.

Food links us all through time and space.

Restaurants connect a network of farmers

and suppliers with the guests. We create

experiences and memories that tie us all

together into a larger whole. Food is central

in most cultures to celebrations and comfort.

In times of joy and sorrow, prosperity and

challenge, we gather around the table and

eat. We bring people together, teach and

tempt, satisfy the hunger physically, and often

emotionally ... All in a day’s work!

Brenda Smith

Pinecroft Green Frog Tearoom, Aylmer

Women in business, in three words: “Sincere.

Engaged. Driven.”

We find satisfaction in providing a unique

experience for our customers: from the freshly

prepared menu to the visual experience of the

entire property. Providing good value for their

money, and making sure that our business is a

great place to work for our employees. Since we

eatdrink: The Local Food & Drink Magazine

are a “public relations service industry,” I strive

to make everyone’s experience the best it can be.

Pinecroft opened in May, 1948 as a pottery

studio, and remains the longest continuously

Brenda Smith

March/April 2019 | 29

make me over zealous about food presentation,

balance, and the ever important first impression

of the food when it arrives at the table.

When I’m at work, I feel empowered,

energized and thankful. Every day, someone

thanks us for what we offer at Pinecroft. From

the moment someone drives in the laneway,

they begin to evaluate the business. We

endeavour to make it the best experience, and

one that will bring them back because of our

good service, great food and beautiful scenery.

A complete package.

operating studio in Canada. The tearoom was

opened in 1978 by my mother and I to service

the customers, who, at that time, were making

a long drive out into the country to purchase

our pottery. Both my son and daughter work

with us in the business, with the intention

that they will one day take over the operation.

I love what I do, and I wouldn’t do it if I

didn’t. Pinecroft represents a dream come true

and a special place that, as a family, we are

happy to share with everyone. After toughing

out the first 35 years or so of running

the restaurant, my son now manages the

financial/business side, my daughter oversees

all operations in the kitchen, my husbands

bakes all the fresh bread and rolls and I

continue to fill in where needed as cook, baker

or sometimes server, while I am also filling the

role of resident studio potter.

There is an element to artistry to what I do,

for sure. Being a ceramic artist first tends to

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30 | March/April 2019

Suzanne Steed

Steed & Co. Lavender,Central Elgin

Women in business, in three words: “Creative.

Determined. Confident.”

With a passion for gardening and landscape

design, I developed an agri-tourism business

where we provide visitors with an experience

for the senses. I have developed all of our

handcrafted products as well as our culinary

line of lavender inspired food products. I also

manage the day-to-day operations at our farm.

Operating a farm brings new challenges every

day and there is always something going on. I

enjoy these challenges, even though I sometimes

struggle through the difficult ones. But when

a visitor comes to me and says, “Thank you for

creating a beautiful place to visit,” it makes me

smile and feel very proud of what I do.

There is absolutely an element of artistry

in what I do! I take a lovely, fragrant herb

(lavender) and create many specialty culinary

products. For example using this herb in

our culinary products can be tricky as it can

overpower foods, so I’m always aiming to

achieve a balance that is both interesting and

enjoyable to the palate.

When you’re a business owner, you’re

always thinking about your business. I can’t

describe what it’s like to be in the zone,

because I’m never out of it. I’m always mulling

over different ideas, conducting research and

finding that inspiration comes to me at all

hours, including in the middle of the night.

Recently, I was thinking about our jams and

Suzanne Steed

eatdrink.ca |@eatdrinkmag

wondering about what a combination of

lavender and orange would be like. How would

the flavour interact with the citrus notes?

With our culinary products, I create the

recipes, and pass them along to production,

but with our soaps, I’m often creating them

— so I’m in a productive zone then too. Plus,

when I’m out in the community, I find that

my business has become part of my identity. I

was just in the grocery store and had someone

come up to me and ask, “Aren’t you the

lavender lady?” My business is always there.

It becomes a part of who you are, and I’m sure

any business owner could relate.

It always amazes me how people never think

to consider lavender as an edible herb. After

travelling through France, eating at French

restaurants and speaking to many people who

live there, I found that lavender is a popular

ingredient in many dishes — from desserts to

main courses featuring fish and chicken.

Lavender is the same family as mint. If you

look at a lavender spike, it’s square — and

if you look at a mint stem, it’s square also.

We’re familiar with mint’s strong flavour,

and lavender’s strength is similar. However,

lavender has the ability to really enhance

flavours. We have a raspberry-strawberry

preserve, and lavender picks up the raspberry

and helps it pop. It also enhances the flavour

of our dark chocolate, and the vanilla in our ice

cream. It’s remarkable in that way: it enhances

whatever you use it with, but adds a floral note.

I hope that our lavender farm offers visitors

an opportunity to escape from their hectic

lives, to a peaceful rural setting, where they

can stroll amongst the millions of beautiful

lavender flowers from mid-June to mid-July.

I encourage visitors to learn many of the great

attributes this herb has to offer, including;

growing, harvesting and cooking with lavender.

Lauren Vandixhoorn

SoLo on Main, Port Stanley

Women in Business, in three words:

“Empower. Inspire. Talent.”

Knowing that my work in any aspect of the

restaurant will result in a satisfied customer

is what lights my fire. That’s what my work

means to me too, that’s whole point: to make

people happy. The music, the ingredients,

drinks, the staff, decisions I make everyday

are all for the good of the customer. It’s

simple, and that’s what I like.

I also want people to find that when they

eatdrink: The Local Food & Drink Magazine

March/April 2019 | 31

good, and then try my own version of it. A lot

of chefs are inspired that way — by a dish that

you start tweaking until it becomes yours.

Good times are had at SoLo on Main! We’re

inviting and we’re approachable. It’s just a

chill place to enjoy some delicious, quality

food, listen to awesome music and enjoy the

view. I’ve worked very hard to make it so.

TANYA CHOPP is a local writer and communications

professional who enjoys exploring and writing on topics

related to local food and culture, humour and fitness.

Lauren Vandixhoorn

dine here, there’s incredible value that goes

into the experience they have. I believe that a

restaurant provides more than just a place to

eat — it offers a whole experience.

I always knew that this is what I wanted

to do. I grew up in Port Stanley, and I

remember walking on the docks across from

this restaurant with my friend when I was 15,

talking about what we were going to do when

we were older, and thinking, ”I’m going to own

a restaurant for sure.” I always knew I’d be a

chef. I’m the kind of person who has to be in

charge, and when the opportunity came, I felt

like I was ready and knew I could do it. When

you’re put into a position where you have to

do it, it just happens.

There’s a level of workmanship in creating

a menu, it has a flow, a balance. My menu has

a personal touch that’s part of the vibe. It

largely dictates the style of the restaurant.

I’m inspired by the restaurants that I love

to eat at, and even by social media. I might

see a picture of something, feel like it looks



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32 | March/April 2019

eatdrink.ca |@eatdrinkmag


Sarnia-Lambton/Huron County

Women in Food (2019)

Entrepreneurs in Good Taste


Berni Gelinas

Kitchen Widgets, Sarnia

In business since 1995, we are a gourmet

kitchen store, catering to those who love to

cook or want to make cooking easier. From

cookware to bakeware, dinnerware, knives and

widgets “we find the right tools for the right

job.” Many of our products are Canadian-made.

We provide the necessary items for

preparation and serving of food and drink. We

love birthdays, anniversaries, weddings and

“just because” occasions so we also provide a

gift registry.

The fact that we are in our 24th year of

business is very satisfying, but best of all are

the many amazing people we have met during

our journey.

I am not really one to give advice. I feel

that each situation is unique. Different times,

different measures.

We have worked hard during the past several

years doing something we love. We were

honoured to be the CGTA Retailer of the Year.

I say “we” because I could never have done it

without the people around me. You are only as

good as the people you surround yourself with.

Leanne Kavanagh

Shopbike Coffee Roasters, Bayfield

My partners and I dreamed up Shopbike one

cold Bayfield winter, six years ago. We had

a vision of a vibrant Bayfield surrounded by

craft breweries and wineries. We pictured

roasted coffee and a cute café, smack dab in

the middle… so we ordered a coffee roaster,

sourced green coffee beans and taught

ourselves how to roast them.

We have evolved in six years. We team meet at

the end of every season, shave off what didn’t fit

and dream up new ideas for next season.

As an all-season business we have learned

to enjoy the ebb and flow of Bayfield, super

busy in the summer, slower in the winter.

Leanne Kavanagh

We have many local suppliers such as

Ferguson Apiaries and Bayfield Maple Syrup as

well as New Age Port Stanley, Culture Shock and

others. We wholesale to places such as Cowbell

Brewery in Blyth, The Black Dog Pub and Bistro

in Kincardine, and Killer Cupcakes in Guelph.

I develop roasts with our business partner/

roaster Shaun Henry. I am also responsible for

client relations, staffing, café creations, front

of house, deliveries, bill paying, mopping

floors, you name it! As a small business owner,

you take it all on. I am also involved with the

Bayfield and Area Chamber of Commerce as

president 2018/2019. In my free time I work

on the promotion of Bayfield as a food and

drink destination for tourism.

I love working with many other businesses,

the unlimited coffee and the freedom to be


What made the choice easy for me was that I

love coffee. I wanted to learn more, such as how

to roast and how to make drinks. Most of all

when I see someone enjoy something I helped

create, it feels so good. If you love it, do it!

My passions and drive have allowed me a

lovely little life with my friends and daughter

in one of the most beautiful places to live. I

can hear the lake and drink a latte whenever I

eatdrink: The Local Food & Drink Magazine

want. It is not without dedication and hours

in the day, but it is totally worth it.

Anne Kurtz-Alton

Alton Farms Estate Winery, Plympton-Wyoming

My husband and I own a small vineyard and

winery in Lambton county. In 2005 this city

mouse moved to the country. The following

spring we planted grapes with no experience

or expertise. We began with one acre and by

2013, with 6 acres behind us, we obtained

our winery retail licence from the LCBO and

March/April 2019 | 33

opened the winery. To this day the planting,

pruning, tying and picking is all done by hand.

At harvest time we press the grapes through

an Italian grape press, sometimes as much as

20 tons in a season. When the wine is finished

it is gravity fed into the bottles. The corks and

labels are done singly.

Along with the manufacturing of the wine, we

sell our wine in our retail store and tasting bar as

well as at LCBO stores and farmer’s markets.

Most satisfying about the business? Naturally,

the wine, the end product! Watching


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Anne Kurtz-Alton

people as they taste the wines, telling them

our story and teaching them basic wine facts

is very rewarding.

Getting into the wine industry, especially,

requires a lot of knowledge and skill. I had

neither so it must be a passion. There are many

different aspects to Ontario’s wine industry, all

of which are equally challenging to both sexes.

As a mother of five, my focus until 2005

was my family. Since then I have learned

many skills! Driving a tractor with no breaks,

working heavy equipment, viticulture, wine

making, marketing, accounting and retail, to

name a few. I became a farmer.

When I look back, I would have never

dreamed of my husband Marc and I owning

and running a winery and vineyard.

Caitlin Vail

Cait’s Café, Goderich

Cait’s Café is a coffee shop in downtown

Goderich specializing in European pastry and

espresso beverages. We offer a full lunch menu

of deli sandwiches, soups, salads and a variety

of house-made treats such as muffins, cookies

and squares.

I am the owner/operator along with my

husband Spencer. One of my major roles is

to produce the baked goods. You will also

find me scheduling employees, making

espresso, clearing tables, washing dishes,

ordering from local farmers and responding

to catering inquiries.

There are three things that are very satisfying

about this business. Seeing how happy our

eatdrink: The Local Food & Drink Magazine

customers are. We have many regulars and the

community support has been incredible. They

love our place. With no family nearby for either

of us, the community is our family.

Working with local farmers and producers

has been an honour for us. Knowing that

our produce, eggs, cheese, coffee beans, etc.

come from high quality sources is what sets

us apart. We love the idea that when someone

supports our business, they are supporting a

string of other local businesses and producers.

Lastly, seeing our staff strive and enjoy

their working environment is very satisfying.

Hearing them laugh and enjoy themselves

is music to my ears. They work hard, so it is

important to know they are also finding joy in

what they do.

While your passion can take you places, it

is the hard work and perseverance that will

take you all the way. You must be physically

and mentally prepared, knowing that there

is a lot of stress and long hours. If you have

a strong work ethic, you can go far. Set

measurable goals both long and short term,

to keep you on track and to keep the business

growing and exciting.

I just became a mom to our beautiful

daughter, Gabrielle. I joked with my husband

that if you can start your own food and beverage

business, you can do anything. I wasn’t quite

prepared for motherhood, but it is rewarding.

The community loves seeing her at the café.

Because No Kitchen Is Ever Complete ...




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Caitlin Vail

36 | March/April 2019

eatdrink.ca |@eatdrinkmag

Melissa White

Soups Up!/Sticky Fingers, Sarnia

Upon graduating from college, I wanted

my own business. I created a business plan

and opened Sticky Fingers in 2003. I started

off small, as my belief is to grow when you

know what sells. In 2010 I took over the unit

beside Sticky Fingers and prepared to open

Soups Up! The day that it was to open I was

hospitalized. That same day a woman drove

into our newly renovated building. We opened

after rebuilding in December 2010. We have

“Where Everyone Knows

You’re Game”

Year Round Restaurant & Bar

Using the Best of Local Ingredients

from Neighbouring Producers

72538 Hwy. 21, Zurich ON



Melissa White

since moved to 1143 Confederation Street, are

busier than ever, and planning an expansion.

We provide a large selection of homemade

soups, kaisers and cinnaminis to our walk-in

customers and through on-line ordering. We

also have a catering business.

From day one I have played a key role in

all aspects of the café, from business plans to

mopping floors as well as the catering business.

Being my own boss and being creative are

satisfying. Fighting for every dollar I make, I

appreciate it more.

Many times, I wanted to give up! People

doubt you, so be tough and persevere. I am

a people pleaser which is an advantage and

a disadvantage. It upsets me when someone

isn’t happy, but it has made me stronger and

the business better by improving our ways.

I have been nominated for and won several

awards for “Young Entrepreneur of the Year”

and “Outstanding Business of the Year”.

Thank you to family, staff and customers.

NANCY LOUCKS-MCSLOY is a freelance writer who

loves cooking and entertaining. Her work has appeared in

Eatdrink and many other publications.

Grand Bend’s Annual Art, Culinary & Music Tour

MAY 3,4 & 5





eatdrink: The Local Food & Drink Magazine


If You Love It, Do It

Women in Beer


March/April 2019 | 37

First, there was water and grain. In

the kitchens of ancient Egypt and

Iraq, women knew exactly what to do.

Make beer.

A lot has changed in the 4,000 years since,

but thanks to the craft beer revolution we’ve

come full circle on at least one thing. Women

in beer no longer means sexualization in

advertising. It means brewing, bottling, and

innovative marketing.

Diana Salazar, head brewer at Forked

River Brewing in London since 2015, took an

international route. When the bartending

classes she was taking in her native Colombia

led to a microbrewery tour, she became

focused on getting involved beyond serving.

Salazar started searching for post-secondary

brewing programs and landed at Niagara


While her graduating year creation at

Niagara was a wheat beer flavoured with

tamarillo, Salazar’s personal taste in beer

shifts frequently and now centres on IPAs

instead of Scottish ales.

“Women drink everything,” she said.

That’s true, but differences are noted at

craft beer festivals, often a person’s first

experience with sampling the plethora of craft

beers available. A man is more likely to ask

to try a craft beer “like the big beer I’ve been

drinking” while a woman might spy a fruit

beer and start exploring from there.

“It has more to do with beer knowledge

than gender,” said Emily Ramsey, who works

in post-fermentation (the position is called

“cellarman” in some breweries) at Forked


Ramsey, who learned on the job at Great

Lakes Brewery in Toronto, said the image of

craft breweries being workplaces for young,

white males has changed a lot, thanks to

groups and advocates such as the Society of

Beer Drinking Ladies, the Pink Boots Society,

and Queen of Craft. And Salazar notes

Niagara College’s brewing program reserves

three spots per semester for women.

Craft brewery taprooms are not your

grandmother’s ladies and escorts rooms.

They’re community centres, with everything

from beer yoga classes at Anderson Craft Ales

in London to paint nights, trivia contests, and

board games at various breweries.

At Black Swan Brewing in Stratford,

retail, brewery and social media assistant

Post-fermentation worker Emily Ramsey, left, and

head brewer Diana Salazar of Forked River Brewing in

London are among the women playing key roles in the

craft beer industry.

38 | March/April 2019

Meghan Landers is an assistant with retail, brewing and

social media at Stratford’s Black Swan Brewing. “Even

though you will face adversity, don’t let it stop you.”

eatdrink.ca |@eatdrinkmag

Meghan Landers said women enjoy pairing

conversation with a new craft beer discovery

or standby favourite.

“I think the best thing about drinking in a

brewery as a woman is when other women are

there,” she said. “We go through a lot of the

same experiences, so knowing other women

are there is always comforting. If you see me

behind the bar, you know I got you!”

She also has a go-for-it attitude when it

comes to landing a job in craft brewing.

“As simple as it sounds, I would say if you

love it, do it. Your passion and knowledge will

always stand and even though you will face

adversity, don’t let it stop you.”

Aynsley Anderson of Anderson Craft Ales in

London agreed.

“All of our jobs can be done by any gender,”

she said. “There are obviously role-specific

qualifications, but otherwise the common

thread is a person that is dedicated and

genuinely interested in furthering the local,

independent beer movement.”

Gender neutrality extends to marketing and

to a taproom drinking environment that’s more

like a living room than an old school beer hall.

eatdrink: The Local Food & Drink Magazine

March/April 2019 | 39

“We don’t market specifically to any

gender,” she said. “We market to people

that are interested in a quality product

and who want to enjoy it in a friendly and

welcoming environment. Our aim is to

foster an environment where people feel

welcome chatting with our staff and family or

alternately enjoying a quiet beer with friends,

family, solo, etc. No pressure.”

Still, there have been flashpoints with some

craft breweries and their questionable choices

of names for their beers — sexist names

or labels which could cost breweries female


“All industries should be striving to market

their product in a way that doesn’t offend

people’s basic human rights,” Anderson said.

“So, hopefully breweries will step up to think

of more creative marketing techniques than

the Mad Men or shock value approach.”

GEORGE MACKE is a Southwestern Ontario craft beer

explorer who spends too much time at the LCBO and craft


Aynsley Anderson, a co-owner at Anderson Craft Ales in

London, has the role of overseeing “big picture” social

media, marketing and facilities plans. Above, she checks

on the brewery’s products at the LCBO.

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40 | March/April 2019

eatdrink.ca |@eatdrinkmag


Remembering Michèle Bosc

A Champion of Ontario Wine


On January 10, the shocking news spread

quickly via social media that Michèle Bosc

had passed away following chemotherapy

treatments after cancer surgery. She was a

well-known figure in Ontario’s wine industry. The Bosc

family own and operate Château des Charmes winery in

Niagara-on-the-Lake. Michèle was VP of marketing and


Michèle Bosc was responsible for staff training

and development, trade relations, advertising and

marketing, as well as the guest experience and

hospitality programs at the winery. She was also

the winery representative on various marketing and

tourism committees in the region.

An engaging and passionate social marketer for the

family’s winery, her last tweet was on New Year’s Eve.

“Thank you for sharing all of the ways that you enjoyed

our wines over the holiday season — it is truly the best

gift that we could receive. Cheers to 2019!”

As word quickly spread, heartfelt messages of

condolence, including these, were posted on the

Château des Charmes Facebook page.

“Our i4C family would like to share our profound

sympathy with the Boscs, Michèle’s family and

everyone at Château des Charmes. We are stunned and

we grieve. And we also honour Michèle’s incredible

commitment to our wine industry, and her indelible

role as a communicator and ambassador.”

— Cool Climate Chardonnay Celebration

“Michèle was a valued colleague here in Niagara-onthe-Lake

and her influence was also felt right across the

Canadian wine landscape. She will be missed …”

— Reif Estate Winery

“Michèle Bosc was a beautiful example of what it

means to give her everything to customer service,

she was an ambassador to exemplary experiences at

Château des Charmes, was so supportive to women in

business and such a mentor to so many — especially

those that worked closest with her at the winery.”

— Cathy Davis

Michèle Bosc, seen below with her husband Paul, was an inspiring

ambassador for Ontario wines in her role with Château des Charmes.

Photo by CL Buchanan

eatdrink: The Local Food & Drink Magazine

“To all of us women in wine, we have lost a

strong, vibrant, inspirational, super intelligent,

witty, leader. She was a guru of social media

marketing in wine as an early adopter and then

a market leader. As a colleague on the wine

marketing council, her voice resonated with a

true passion for our industry. So sad, she will

be truly missed by so many.”

— Danielle Giroux

Michèle Bosc’s favourite quote about the

family’s winery was “Making wine is not what

we do, it’s who we are.” She was the

wife of Paul Bosc Jr., the mother of

their son Alex, and also a daughter

and a sister. And an ambassador for

the Ontario wine industry.

In recognition of Michèle’s

life and her contribution to the

Ontario wine industry, here are

some wine recommendations

from her family’s winery.

Château des Charmes Brut

Sparkling (Vintages #224766,

$25.95) — Michèle loved sparkling

wine and was a promoter of

Ontario bubbly. She was always

Alton Farms

















Aberarder Line




77 km

Available at the winery, select LCBOs & farmers’ markets

5547 Aberarder Line, Plympton-Wyoming

519-899-2479 • altonfarmsestatewinery.com

An EPIC Wine Region

that shares latitude,

not attitude.

We pride our winery experiences

as being laid back and fun. Enjoy

our scenic wine route by taking an

unforgettable road trip, or if you’re

feeling adventurous, pedal your way

around the shores.

Fun Fact!

Our EPIC Wine Region shares the same

latitude as some of the worlds most

renowned wine making regions, including




eatdrink.ca |@eatdrinkmag

excited to talk about Château des Charmes

wines, especially this one. Produced the same

way as Champagne, (traditional method)

with Ontario chardonnay and pinot noir

grapes, this dry (brut) effervescent wine

offers apple and pear fruit notes with terrific

acidity. Secondary fermentation occurs in the

bottle and it is aged at least two years before

disgorgement, resulting in the added bready

notes and creamy texture. Michèle’s favourite

food pairing for this wine was popcorn. It

was elected as an LCBO Vintages Essential

(a collection of approximately 100 fine wines

and spirits from around the world that are

proven favourites, represent the county and

region well and are usually available.)


9AM – 4PM

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and adjacent Conference Rooms,

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251 Dundas St. London, ON

• Shop Vendors

• Tasting Workshops

• Industry Speakers

Celebrating Tea

and Kombucha in

London, Ontario



Château des Charmes Vidal

Icewine (Vintages #565861, $27.96

/ 200mL bottle) — The day after

Michèle’s death, Château des

Charmes had to harvest the grapes

for the 2018 icewine. When it is ready

to be released, there are plans in the

works that this Icewine will have a

special label in honour of Michèle.

The 2017 vintage is currently

available at LCBO stores and the

winery. Super sweet, candied

apricot, honey and marmalade.

Michèle recommended pairing with

crème brûlée.

Château des Charmes Paul Bosc

Estate Vineyard 2016 Pinot Noir

(VINTAGES #332858, $38.95) — This

is a good representation of a topshelf

Ontario pinot noir. Red cherry

fruit lead, with earthy forest floor

and smoky notes. It is a mediumbodied

wine that is elegant in old

world style. Michèle’s pairing

suggestion — herb-encrusted

rack of lamb or cedar-planked

salmon with a hoisin glaze.

GARY KILLOPS is a CAPS Certified

Sommelier who loves to talk, taste, and

write about wine. He shares his tasting

notes on EssexWineReview.com


eatdrink: The Local Food & Drink Magazine


I Feel it Coming

Upcoming Highlights on the Music Scene

March/April 2019 | 43


Spring is in the air! Okay, maybe we’re

still buried in snow and icy winds still

blow, but the end is definitely in sight.

It will get lighter, and milder. It will.

In the meantime, we have music to warm us.

Jeff Healey called him “the finest blues

guitarist in Canada.” Bob Dylan said he’d be

famous if he hailed from Chicago. They were

talking about Jack de Keyzer. London Music

Club has the Jack de Keyzer Duo on Thursday,

March 21 (7:30 pm/8:30 pm). The man has two

Junos, seven Maple Blues Awards and a 2018

album, CheckMate, to showcase. De Keyzer

needs to be heard, you need to hear him.

Jack de Keyzer


of Junos,

the Canadian



2019 Juno


show is

coming to



March 17 (8

pm). CBC

will televise

it live, but

you can be

there. Sarah McLachlan hosts and scheduled

performers include Loud Luxury and 2019

Canadian Music Hall of Fame inductee Corey

Hart. There will be others.

TD Sunfest is bringing Rosie & The

Riveters to the Cuckoo’s Nest Folk Club,

aka Chaucer’s Pub, on Wednesday, March 20

(7:30 pm). The trio’s 2018 album, Ms. Behave,

rode the U.S. Top Ten folk music charts for

17 weeks. Billboard called it “powerful and

daring.” It’s music for the #MeToo era — “a

collection of gritty, sultry, vintage-inspired

folk anthems that paint a portrait of a

woman’s voice in a man’s world.”

Western Music’s lunchtime “Fridays 12:30”

concert series winds up its season with Light

of East Ensemble. The London-based septet

plays von Kuster Hall (Music Building) on

Friday, March 22 (12:30 pm). LoEE plays music

of the Near and Middle East — Armenian,

Greek, Sephardic, Arabic. Intrigued? Check

out their latest album, Live at Aeolian Hall, at


Light of East Ensemble

Rosie & The Riveters

Come for the concert, (12:00-12:30 pm), and

stay for lunch ($8). Upcoming Friday Lenten

Noon Recitals And Lunch at First-St. Andrew’s

United Church: Alastair Smyth, Baritone

on March 22. Laudamus Bells, Terry Head,

Director on March 29. Lynda Kennedy and

Terry Head Piano Duo on April 5. Admission

is by free will donation.

44 | March/April 2019

Sticking with world music, Sunfest is bringing

Canadian flamenco-etcetera guitarist and

composer Jesse Cook to Aeolian Hall on Friday,

March 22 (7 pm/8 pm). Juno-winner Cook,

born and partly raised in France, studied both

flamenco and classical guitar. His music builds

on those and other traditions, including jazz

and Latin. If you love guitar, check him out (goo.

gl/KFH9e7). He’s a master. (If you can’t make

the London date, Cook is playing Brantford’s

Sanderson Centre on Tuesday, March 19, 8 pm.)


Jesse Cook

The last time multi-Juno-winning singersongwriter

Bahamas (Afie Jurvanen) came

to town, his shows sold out quickly. London

Music Hall has the popular troubadour,

along with opener Ben Rogers, on Tuesday,

March 26 (7 pm/8 pm). My guess: if you like

Bahamas, you’ll like Rogers. The latter is a

little more traditional Americana, but with

similarly catchy, intelligent songs. Bahamas

is touring his 2018 album, Earthtones. Rogers’

latest, Wildfire, drops in March.

Hometown sweetheart Denise Pelley

appears with The Ken Foster Quartet, part

of the free Jazz for the People concert series

at Wolf Performance Hall (Central Library). It

goes Wednesday, March 27 (7:15 pm–8:45 pm).

For more free concerts: goo.gl/F5ePKS. Did we

mention they’re free?

London Symphonia, the reincarnation of

Orchestra London, offers an intriguing program

on Tuesday, April 2 at the Talbot Street Church

eatdrink.ca |@eatdrinkmag

(7:30 pm).




Johnston —


and cloud

gongs! —

joins the



for Greek-


Denise Pelley


Christos Hatzi’s piece, Mirage. Rounding out the

program, concert master Joseph Lanza takes a

solo turn on some much more familiar music by

Vivaldi. (For more LS concerts: goo.gl/LEFZMA.)

Jazz fans take note. There’s a new band in

town — well, sort of new. The London Jazz

Sextet, formed with members of London’s

Prime Time Big Band, debuts at London

Music Club on Thursday, April 4 (7 pm/8

pm). Expect the classics — Davis, Coltrane,

Adderly, Monk, etc. — but in fresh new

arrangements by the band.

The Jeffery Concerts, the long-running

chamber music series, presents one of London’s

own musical treasures. World-renowned violist

Sharon Wei appears in “Sharon Wei & Friends”

at Wolf Performance Hall, Friday, April 5 (8 pm).

Wei, who has worked with great orchestras and

conductors, is a professor at Western’s music

school. The program includes music by Hummel,

Mendelsshon and lesser known early-Romantic

composer Bernhard Heinrich Romberg. (For

more Jeffery concerts: goo.gl/ct9Hst.)

Canadian blues guitar mainstay Colin James

comes to the Bud on Monday, April 8 (7:30 pm).

James has been on a roll lately with two wellreceived

and best-selling albums, 2016’s Blue

Highways and 2018’s Miles To Go. Both spent

time on roots/blues charts in Canada and the

U.S. James has been at it a long time. Now, it

seems, he’s an overnight sensation.

The international success of her 2014 album,

Compostela, took singer-songwriter Jenn

Grant around the world. She’s back home now,

touring with music from her 2017 follow-up,

Paradise. Grant is at Aeolian Hall, Thursday,

April 11 (7 pm/8 pm). Sometime collaborator

Buck 65 (aka CBC Radio 2 DJ Rich Terfry) called

her “one of the best singers in the world.” True?

Come and find out. (If you miss her at Aeolian,

Grant plays Dominion Telegraph in Paris on

Thursday, April 18, 7 pm.)

eatdrink: The Local Food & Drink Magazine

I’ve asked the question before: how does

little Brantford get premier acts that never

make it to London? Brantford’s Sanderson

Centre has jazz star Sonja Gustafson with

Mitchell & Kathryn Baran Family Foundation


Jenn Grant

the Jim Clayton Quartet on Monday, April

15 (8 pm). Two nights later, same time, it’s pop

music legend Chubby Checker. The guy must

be about 100, but apparently still twists the

night away. Brantford is only an hour away.

American alt-rocker Neko Case, once

and still occasionally lead singer of Canada’s

New Pornographers, hits London Music Hall

on Sunday, April 21 (7 pm). Case is touring

her solo Hell-On album, released last year to

strong reviews. It was recorded in Stockholm,

Sweden. (We’re not sure why either.) Edgy,

vaguely punk aesthetic.

The Grand Theatre closes out its season

with a revival of Mamma Mia!, the hit movie

with soundtrack by Abba that found new life

as a stage musical. Harmless, slightly sappy

fun, catchy tunes.

The Magisterra at the Museum chamber

music series finishes up on Thursday, May 2

(7 pm) at Museum London with “Eight.” The

concert features members of the Londonbased

collective founded and directed by

German-born violinist Annette-Barbara

Vogel. It features octets and sextets by

Brahms and Brahms protégé Ferdinand

Theriot, and a new commissioned work by

local composer Edgar Suski.




In support of Unity Project & Museum London

APRIL 27, 2019 @ 6 PM


Buy tickets at:


Never heard of Swingrowers (pronounced

swing growers)? Me neither. But if the folks

at TD Sunfest think they’re worth bringing to

Aeolian Hall — which they are, on Saturday,

May 4 (7 pm/8 pm) — then I’m willing to listen.

The vocal quartet, based in Palermo, Italy and

Brighton, England, “blends the freshness of

electronic dance music with the warm influences

of 1920s and ’30’s era jazz to create a unique

vintage-inspired pop sound.” Okay. Preview

here: swingrowers.com. They are kind of fun.


Wait, is that summer I see peaking over the


Neko Case

GERRY BLACKWELL is a London-based freelance


46 | March/April 2019

eatdrink.ca |@eatdrinkmag


Dabbling in Wonderful

Donna Feore on Work, Parenting & Inspiration


The secret inspiration for Donna

Feore’s artistry on the stage,

choreographing and directing

dancers, singers and actors in

brilliant, high-energy unison, comes from

an unexpected place. The award-winning,

Stratford-based dynamo behind the success

of shows such as Guys and Dolls, Rocky Horror

Picture Show, the movie Mean Girls and the

TV movie Eloise, sees dance and movement

all around her. In particular, she finds

creative inspiration from her deep love of

sport. This interview was conducted while

she was driving to Toronto to proudly cheer

on her daughter Anna Feore, a Team Canada

volleyball player who is in her final season

with the University of Toronto Blues. On

another day she might have been spectating at

her son Tom’s fencing match when he was also

Donna Feore

an undergraduate varsity athlete at U of T, or

cheering her older stepson Jack at soccer.

“I just don’t trust an actor that doesn’t love

something other than acting. There are so

many cross-overs and parallels between arts

and sports. I commiserate with Anna’s coach

all the time at U of T. We talk about strategies:

we have to mediate, motivate and inspire. It’s

very similar. One thing is for sure, when an

athlete or actor loves something else, they

bring more to the table,” says Feore.

The mother-daughter pair has a favourite

hangout: courtside watching the Toronto

Raptors of the National Basketball League.

“What I love about basketball is that you’ve

got these big lanky men, some over seven feet

tall. Now you are on this tiny space and you

watch how beautifully they move. They are

so body aware of each other. It is a beautiful

dance and they are pretty graceful. When

I saw LeBron James — that got me

excited,” says Feore. “I have been known

to have a glass of wine or two and buy

very expensive Raptors tickets. It is so

invigorating — I love being there.”

What Feore experiences watching

the round ball on the small court she

transfers to the thrust stage at the

Festival Theatre at Stratford, where she

is kicking off her 25th season. She is a

wizard at three-dimensional choreography,

using every inch of a stage that

has the audience wrapped around it on

three sides. Right now, the excitement

is mounting for this season’s production

of Billy Elliot the Musical, which is in

rehearsals at Stratford under the direction

and choreography of Feore and

which features a cast of 44, including 11

children. It is just one of seven productions

she is working on in 2019, from

Stratford to New York City to Ottawa.

“I’m kind of busy everywhere right

now,” says Feore without a trace of

Photo by Ann Baggley

eatdrink: The Local Food & Drink Magazine

Photo credit: Stratford Festival Reviews

fatigue. “Billy Elliot is really my prime focus

right now. It’s the first out of the gate and

the biggest prep. It’s a show that has 14

production numbers. It’s crazy. It is a huge

show. We did a Billy Bootcamp in January and

did a week with some of our young company

including with Nolen Dubuc, the Billy Elliot,

and his understudy. We have some exciting

things like flying — so we had a week of

doing scene, dialect work and then we started

rehearsals on February first.”

Feore says it has taken a year of

preparations for her famous reinvention of a

popular musical to the thrust stage. “I only do

those that I can reimagine,” she says. For her,

working with an 11-year-old lead is exciting. “I

learn a lot from young actors, watching how

free they are. They don’t have that mileage on

them. They are incredibly open.”

At the same time, Feore is also directing and

choreographing the second Stratford musical

of 2019, Little Shop of Horrors, at the Avon

Theatre with a ’60s score and loads of special

effects. “Our plant is off the charts crazy as

only Stratford could do it,” she says. This is

sure to be a hit with the same crowd that put

Rocky Horror into the Stratford record books for

longest run, and with huge financial success.

Feore says one woman attended Rocky 42 times

and several others saw it 30 times. She hopes it

will now move to Toronto.

“The hard drive is full,” laughs Feore when

asked how she juggles two major shows

alongside work in other cities. “I tell my

assistant ‘download all the

content from my brain’! I

work with my associates,

they are fantastic and have

been with me for six to

seven years. We have our

system. They get all the

information and record

everything. Right away, we

set four to five numbers

and if there is dance in a

show we do that early, as it

takes stamina so people are

healthy, strong. There’s a

bit of a method to the madness, you know.”

Her longtime friendship and collaboration

with Stratford Artistic Director Antoni

Cimolino is evident in his regard for her.

“Donna is the master of musical theatre. We

are so fortunate to have her return this season

and take on the gargantuan task of helming

two major productions at the same time. Her

The Wildest Town in Canada:

Donnelly Songs & Stories

by Jeff Culbert May 21 to May 25

Like Father, Like Son? Sorry.

by Chris Gibbs May 28 to June 1





(519) 782-4353 www.psft.ca

work last year on The Music Man and The Rocky

Horror Show was inspirational and I have no

doubt that her productions this season will

have us all seeing both of these musicals in a

brand new light.”

Fifty-five-year old Feore seems to thrive on

the “madness”. She and

The Feore family: from the left,

her husband, acclaimed

Tom, Donna, Jack, Anna & Colm

actor Colm Feore, are also

parents to 22-year-old

Anna and 24-year-old

Tom, a law student at U

of T, as well 29-year-old

Jack, Colm’s son from a

previous marriage, who

is getting married this

summer in Nova Scotia.

Donna Feore is fiercely

proud of the three of

them. “The whole team

knows when my kids are doing something!

Sometimes the whole crew watches a semifinal

match on the computer if Anna is competing

abroad. It’s all about priorities. For women,

I think we can have it all but not at the same

time. Stop trying. This can go and that can

happen. That can go and this can happen. I call

it dabbling in wonderful.”

48 | March/April 2019

She credits their decision to make

Stratford a home base since 1997 as key to

being able to manage two show business

careers while raising a family. Feore says the

location gives them room to breathe and that

they actually enjoy the drives from Toronto

Pearson airport to Stratford while Colm

commutes to film shoots and she to stage

and film work around the world. And, with

her trademark big personality, she jokes that

her choice in a husband was quite practical.

“The other smart thing I did was marry a

man who is an absolutely fabulous cook!

First question when you meet someone is:

do you golf, the answer is no then you carry

on. Second question is do you cook and the

answer is yes then you carry on!”

Feore’s theatre work is vast and expanding.

The hit The Hockey Sweater, the Musical that

she directed and choreographed ran at the

National Arts Centre in Ottawa, and is now

being translated to French for the Montreal

stage. She hopes that show will travel out west.

She is developing a new musical in New York

and another for Stratford, she hints, possibly

for 2020. Her multi-media production, Life

eatdrink.ca |@eatdrinkmag

Reflected, will run on International Women’s

Day in Ottawa, and she continues to work as a

director with operas, including The Marriage of

Figaro in Ottawa.

Despite all her career success, Feore

says that in the end she has a small target

audience: her family. “Honestly: every choice

I make in my life, from choices of what

material I am going to do, what I won’t do, I

think of my daughter. I want my daughter to

be proud of me. Sometimes we have to make

hard ones, and we have to speak up and have

hard things to say. The one thing I’ve always

taught my children is that there is a very big

difference between assertive and aggressive.

Being assertive is about being clear and it

will take you a long way. There is nothing

gray about me. I take the word director

seriously — it has the word direct in it and

it’s never been so important. Do what you

mean and mean what you say.”

JANE ANTONIAK is a regular contributor to Eatdrink.

She is also Manager, Communications & Media Relations,

at King’s University College in London.


Plus get your own car cleaned and detailed!

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Presented by

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Contest ends May 27, 2019. Complete details online.

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eatdrink: The Local Food & Drink Magazine

March/April 2019 | 49

The global smash-hit musical!

“One of the most enduring musicals of our era.” now magazine

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April 23 to May 11

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Music and Lyrics by Benny Andersson and

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And some songs with Stig Anderson

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Originally Conceived by Judy Craymer

Co-production with the Charlottetown


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season sponsor

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50 | March/April 2019

eatdrink.ca |@eatdrinkmag


Culinary Community Notes


Rembrandt Homes together with Bethanys Hope

Foundation presents “Feast with Friends” featuring

Food Network star Chef Michael Smith, on Thursday,

April 25. Enjoy an “Interactive Dinner Party” that

kicks off at London Convention Centre with 5pm

cocktails, food stations hosted by London culinary

luminaries, and a silent auction. A sit-down dinner

service and program, including a live auction, starts

at 7pm. Tickets are $200 and available online, or

call 519-858-HOPE. This is an exciting time for

Bethany’s Hope, with clinical trials imminent after

more than two decades of groundbreaking research

right here in London into the devastating disease of

Metachromatic Leukodystrophy (MLD). If you have

not yet seen the short video outlining the efforts

of Lindey and David Mcintyre, who lost their child

Bethany to MLD, go to bethanyscure.ca and prepare

to be inspired. You can also see a video showing

highlights of last year’s event. bethanyshope.org

Angelina & Carmine Ianni, formerly of Pasquales in

North London, have opened C’Angelina at 426 Third

St. Tuesday–Friday, 1–6pm, they sell prepared foods

and fresh meats and offer family-style catering —

including BBQ whole pigs — for family reunions,

weddings, or backyard parties. You also will find

them, and their porchetta specialty, at London

festivals this summer and at the Pinery Market in

Grand Bend. facebook.com/cangelinameatcatering/

While this might sound like heresy to those pining for

Spring, Kevin Beattie and his team award-winning

team at Somerset Fine Wines reminds us that it

is never too early to start your Christmas wine! A

common misconception is that making wine at an

affordable price means it will taste “like homemade.”

Drop in at 150 Exeter Road for expert guidance, or go

to somersetfinewines.com to see their Spring Specials.

Cream Beanery Cafe is a coffee and gelato shop,

and more. They serve breakfast, lunch and supper,

featuring daily homemade specials. Save room for a

Gelato Panini — your favourite gelato flavour sealed

inside a fresh brioche bun. Delicious! 825 Southdale

Rd. W (at Tillman) creambeanery.com

As reported by the CBC, a bad olive harvest, primarily

due to the olive fly, plus a late harvest due to

challenging conditions, has led to some shortages of

quality extra virgin olive oil. Jamie Griffiths of The

Pristine Olive let us know they have found a good supply

from Spain, Sicily and California, as well as his first oil

from Portugal. His store is at 884 Adelaide St N, with

products also available at The Village Meat Shop at The

Market at Western Fair on weekends. thepristineolive.ca

The Church Key is Vanessa and Pete Willis’ downtown

gastro-pub with farm-to-table cuisine and an

impressive selection of craft beers. Chef Michael

Anglestad follows in the modern British tradition by

specializing in high quality food prepared with innovation

and finesse. 476 Richmond St. thechurchkey.ca

Unity Project for Relief of Homelessness provides

emergency shelter, supportive housing and related

services to help adults and youth avoid living on

the street. Life skills are embedded into a home-like

environment where programming for over a thousand

individuals (annually) involves participants with

personal accountability, taking care of themselves,

481 Richmond Street



eatdrink: The Local Food & Drink Magazine

each other, and community. This year, the Unity

Project announced a partnership with Museum

London for the 9th annual UPwithART event to be held

on April 27 at the new Centre at the Forks at Museum

London, catered by North Moore Catering. UPwithART

is Unity Project’s signature fundraiser and a significant

charitable and art event in London. upwithart.ca

The Regional HIV/AIDS Connection annual fundraiser

“A Taste for Life” returns May 1st. Get involved by

volunteering, donating, or dining out at a participating

restaurant! Participating restaurants open their doors

and donate 25% of their evening sales to AIDS service

organizations in their community. atasteforlife.org

Chef Kim Sutherland has done a stellar job

transforming food services at Boler Mountain,

offering a wide variety of healthy choices including

Buddha bowls with vegan broth, housemade

chicken and vegetarian chilli, and grab-and-go

fresh wraps alongside a full line of hot foods aimed

at hungry families, including a full breakfast. She

nurtures a bee colony on site and has instituted an

extensive landfill diversion program. Kudos! As well,

Chef Kim leads the catering kitchen for weddings and

special events at Boler. The popular new chalet is

now booking into 2020. bolermountain.com




Far Out ...

but we like it that way!




A fresh, new harvest of EVOO has arrived just in time for Spring!

Come say Hola, Olá, Hello, or Ciao to our fresh crush of Spanish,

Portugese, Californian & Italian Extra Virgin Olive Oils.

Blair Rd




Crumlin Rd

Oxford St

Come for the planes and

fall in love with the food.

Open Thursday & Friday

(3–6pm) for Small Plate Apps!

½ Price

Bottle of Wine



16-oz Pints




2530 Blair Rd, London

Diamond Flight Centre

Lunch Mon–Fri 11–3 • Dinner Wed–Sun from 5pm

Weekend Breakfast 9–12, Lunch 12–3, Dinner 5–9




Est. 2012

884 Adelaide Street N. | London | 519-433-4444


52 | March/April 2019

eatdrink.ca |@eatdrinkmag

The London Training Centre (LTC) Local Food

Skills program connects people to food. Receiving

solid food-based knowledge, participants explore

options for working with food as a job or profession.

This is a full-time three-week course that provides

skills training, industry certifications and learning

experiences including fundamental culinary skills,

food service styles, growing, harvesting and retailing

food at a farmers’ market. Revenue from the wildly

popular Local Food Skills monthly dinners, put on

by students, supports the program. londontraining.


Natural Ingredients

from Local Vendors

Baked with Butter

from Scratch In House

Lovingly Crafted with Skill & Heart

Owners Tabitha & Dave

New York Style Bagels! Apple & Blueberry Fritters!

900 Oxford Street East at Gammage


Fanshawe College and downtown’s new flex street,

Dundas Place, host a celebration of Canadian music,

food and fun on March 15, noon–6pm, coinciding

with JUNO Week (March 11–17). All members of the

community, along with Fanshawe staff, students and

alumni, are invited to attend. This free, family-friendly

celebration will include live performances by Fanshawe

Music Industry Arts students and graduates and feature

JUNO-inspired appetizers prepared by The Chef’s Table

for a $2 donation. fanshawec.ca/fanshawe-live.

The Market at Western Fair is open Saturdays

(8am–3pm) and Sundays (10am–2pm) every week.

Market Manager Dan Ross and Assistant Manager

Courtney Berens continue to grow attendance

and improve the customer experience. Two floors

and 100+ vendors make up the Market, each with

unique products. Help support local and include

@TheMarketWFD and use #MeetMeAtTheMarket

when sharing on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.


Chef Andrew Wolwowicz’s commitment to freshness

and the provenance of what is on the plate is one

of the cornerstones of Craft Farmacy’s culinary

philosophy. The focus is on craft beer, cocktails, a

large selection of fresh oysters, shellfish and inspired

rustic farm-to-table cuisine. Open for lunch and

dinner Tuesday–Saturday, and Sundays for a prix fixe

brunch and dinner. 449 Wharncliffe Rd, just north of

Baseline. facebook.com/craftfarmacy

Chef Angie Murphy and partner/sommelier Pete

Annson have had some delays opening Grace,

located at the southwest corner of Clarence and

Dundas Streets. facebook.com/graceLDNONT/

Field to Fork Caterer Chef Chad Stewart graduated

college with Culinary Arts and Food & Beverage

diplomas. In 2010, he moved to Vancouver to work at

elite restaurants for the Olympics, including the first

true 100-mile kitchen called Rain City Grill. Stewart

worked at Garlic’s of London for five years and moved

Hope Made Delicious.


Thank you for supporting those

living with, a ected by, and at-risk for HIV/AIDS.





Where Will You Dine?

25% of sales will be donated to RHAC.

eatdrink: The Local Food & Drink Magazine

In Memoriam

Angelo Stavrou, 1943–2019

Owner of Merla Mae Ice Cream, London

He was owner of a number

of successful businesses, but

became beloved by ice cream

lovers young and old when he

stepped in to save a London

institution in 1998. Angelo

Stavrou remained hands on

at Merla Mae Ice Cream Catering until for Special Events,

his recent battle with Company cancer, & Family Christmas

arriving early every day Parties, to do Schools whatever & Sports needed Teams

doing. “Always give more We deliver. than what Full Service the portion Available.

sizes are,” he instructed his daughter Roula

Dereza, who carries on Fresh at Merla Homemade Mae. “He Pasta loved &

Sauces, Meatballs, Lasagnas

taking care of his customers,” said Roula. “He was

and so much more!

on top of his business. And a family man like no

other.” Angelo Stavrou will be sadly missed.

up the ranks to head chef. For the last three years,

Stewart has been a caterer and part time technician

for Fanshawe’s Culinary Management Program. Now

Stewart and his wife Catherine are launching London’s

newest food truck, the Field to Truck Mobile Eatery, just

in time for the JUNO Awards. fieldtoforkcatering.ca

Welcome Reset Social Cafe to downtown London! This

is a new hot-spot for fresh food, coffee and premium

juices, under the Azure condo building at 503 Talbot St.

The vibrant setting makes for a perfect spot to recharge,

relax and reset your day. resetsocial.cafe

Anita Tasonyi and Eduard Nagy are now operating

Budapest Restaurant and making upgrades to the

iconic gem. Protégés of the late Marika Hayek, they

continue to delight clients by serving authentic

Hungarian specialities in this traditional old-world

tavern setting. Try the schnitzel or the stuffed veal —

the spätzle and goulash are also delicious — and save

room for the palacsinta. 348 Dundas St., 519-439-3431

Jess Jazey-Spoelstra’s River Room, inside Museum

London, has banks of tinted windows with panoramic

views overlooking the Forks of the Thames. With

a clubby ambience, tailored décor and charming

attitude, The River Room is open for lunch Tuesday–

Friday, and Sundays for a prix fixe brunch. Museum

London, Ridout St. N. northmoore.ca/theriverroom

Rio Brazilian Steakhouse, located in one of London’s

most historic buildings, boasts a kitchen at the top of

its game. Doors open for their “rodizio” — all-youcan-eat

churrascaria served tableside by charming

gauchos — and an extensive selection of sides at

5pm daily. 45 King Street (at Ridout), rio.london

Bring back “homemade”

again with Marshall’s Pasta!




Fresh Homemade Pasta & Sauces,

Meatballs, Lasagnas and so much more!



to 70734 for a

$5.00 Off Coupon

to be used in-store!

Fully Cooked

Family Dinner for 4!

Choose Your Pasta Tray

& Sauce + Garlic Bread

$21 .99

Pick up Hot and

Ready to Eat!

580 Adelaide St N, London


MON–FRI 9:30am–7pm • SAT 9:30am–5pm • SUN 11am–5pm

Full menu available at marshallspastacatering.ca

Loose Leaf Teas & Tisanes

Contemporary & Traditional Teaware

Fresh Soups, Salads, Cheese Boards,

Fresh-baked Scones,


Indian Cuisine

& Tea Pairing Dinner

Sat., March 9, 7pm

$75/pp, 4 courses

Around the

World Vegan

Tea Pairing Dinner

by Yoda Olinyk

Sat., April 23, 7pm

$75/pp, 4 courses


The Art of

Cup Tossing

– Reading Tea Leaves

(Novice Course Training)

Sun., March 24

$165 (6 hours)


& Chocolate

Pairing with

Sweet Brigadeiros

Wed., May 10

268 Piccadilly Street

(beside Oxford Book Store)

519-601-TEAS (8327) • tealoungelondon.com

WED & THURS 11am-6pm • FRI & SAT 11am-9pm • SUN noon–5pm

eatdrink.ca |@eatdrinkmag

The Merry Makers Block Party

Saturday, March 16, 1–5pm

Held outside on the Covent Garden Market Square,

directly across from Budweiser Gardens.

This 100% handmade, 100% local makers

fair will include food and beverage

vendors, music, and handcrafted

wares from the Forest City. The

downtown core will be alive with

community activities and events all day long!

Mezzanine Level Kids Event, 2–5pm

A fun, free kids event will be held upstairs. See Miss T,

the Bubble Queen, and her incredible bubble show and

enjoy your photo op standing in a large giant bubble!

The event will also have a Bouncy castle, face painters,

live entertainment, food and COTTON CANDY!

Outdoor Easter Farmers’ Market

Saturday, April 20, 8am–1pm

Enjoy an abundance of local favourites in our annual

Easter celebration, outside on the Market Square.

See our website or Facebook page for further details.


With Validation

Half Hour Weekdays

Market Hours

Monday to Saturday

Restaurateur and community leader Heidi Vamvalis

is a pillar of hospitality, and has been serving Greek/

Mediterranean cuisine and traditional English fish

& chips with her husband Bill for over 40 years at

beloved Mykonos Restaurant. Mykonos sports a

festive covered patio that is heated during the cooler

weather. The Mykonos Platter with moussaka,

pastichio, souvlaki, tsaziki, tiropitaki, spanakopita,

loukanica and dolmathaki is outstanding. 572 Adelaide

Street N., 519-434-6736, mykonosrestaurant.ca

Abruzzi Ristorante is an up-to-date epicurean hot spot

serving both modern and emblematic regional Italian

specialties. Owners Rob D’Amico and Chef Dave Lamer’s

offerings are intuitive, often iconic, and prepared

with locally-sourced and quality ethnic ingredients,

supported by a superior wine list featuring

interesting consignments. 119 King St., abruzzi.ca

Barbara Czyz’s success with Unique Food Attitude is

due to excellent modern European cuisine, creative

chalkboard offerings, and an attentive vibe. Specialties

include bigos, Polish poutine, goulash with potato

pancakes, slow-cooked cabbage rolls, and peirogi with

sweet and savoury fillings. 697 Dundas St., 519-649-

2225, unique-food-attitudes.com

Chef/restaurateur T.G. Haile of T.G.’s Addis Ababa

Restaurant embodies the art of hospitality and

entrepreneurism. She is dedicated to supporting

meaningful cultural and charitable initiatives and

events, despite being a busy hands-on restaurateur who

does all of the cooking at her restaurant. Be sure to put

TG’s Ethiopian breakfast on your list for a great culinary

adventure on Sundays. 465 Dundas St. (at Maitland),

519-433-4222, tgsaddisababarestaurant.com

Jill’s Table is London’s paramount purveyor of fine

foods and an award-winning specialty food and

kitchen store in downtown London. Owner Jill Wilcox

is an amazing culinary resource — supportive,

knowledgeable and a leader in promoting the local

food community. For more than 23 years, Wilcox has

been leading cooking classes, now at Jill’s Table, and

has been a food columnist for the London Free Press

and Post Media for more than 38 years. jillstable.ca

Chef Ashton Gillespie’s latest venture is The Dinner

Table — a pop-up restaurant series. Meals are

served at a communal table so anyone who enjoys

great service and delicious food are encouraged to

join them for a variety of themed dinners. facebook.


PC Cooking Schools at Superstore offer one-hour

weekly daytime “What’s for Dinner?” classes on

Thursdays. Oxford & Gammage 12:30–1:30 pm or

Oxford & Hyde Park Road 1–2pm. Gammage location

classes will include “A Serbian Feast” with Paul

eatdrink: The Local Food & Drink Magazine

March/April 2019 | 55

Abeleira on March 5, 6:30–8:30 pm; “Indian Food to

Fight Winter Chills” with Jasjit on March 24, 1–3pm;

“Cinco de Mayo” with Chef Barbara Toomer, April

19, 6:30–8:30 pm; and “Flavours of the Far East”

with Chef Mies Bervoets, April 30, 6:30–8:30pm.

The Hyde Park Road location offers “Fruitful Dining”

with Jamie Chowns, March 14, 6:30–8:30pm; “Cinco

de Mayo” with Chef Barbara Toomer, March 26,

6:30–8:30pm; and “Indian Seafood Sensations” with

Ankita Vaidya, April 23, 6:30-8:30 pm. Sign up for

any PC Cooking classes at customer service in-stores

or online. pccookingschool.ca

The 2nd annual London I Love BEER Festival: The

Taco Edition is coming to the London Convention

Centre on March 23 for a night of Ontario beer, cider,

spirits and tacos. Cheers! iheartbeer.ca/london/

Michelle Pierce Hamilton is sponsoring London’s

first Tea & Kombucha Festival on Saturday, March 30

at the London Public Library Central Branch (Wolf

Performance Hall and meeting spaces). The Tea

Guild of Canada is a co-sponsor, providing expertise,

resources, and volunteers. The spirit of this venture is

to grow tea culture by showcasing London and areas’

independent tea and kombucha businesses. There will

be a strong lineup of engaging skill-building workshops

and speakers, including focused tea tastings by certified

tea sommelier Karen Hardwick and Tea Haus owner

Stefanie Stolzel. londonteafestival.ca

Twenty new coaches emerged from the experiential

tourism “Train the Trainer” course hosted by SWOTC

and guru Celes Davar at The Tap Room above The

Root Cellar, a ground-breaking gathering of tourism

marketers and “experience” partners, all grads of the

“Unlocked & Inspired” experiential tourism training.

A Slow Food-inspired evening, with a craft beer

pairing by Nate Torrresan of Forked River Brewing

Co., was facilitated by Bryan Lavery and emceed by

Nick Lavery of the Lavery Culinary Group with Chef

Thomas Waite of The In Home Chef and Chef Ashton

Gillespie of The Dinner Table. Speakers Gary Rowsell

and Emanuela Frongia spoke about the Slow Food

movement and its exciting Canadian Ark of Taste.

Chaucer’s Pub (sibling to Marienbad next door)is

among the longest continuously-operating hospitality

businesses in downtown London and will be

celebrating a 40th anniversary later this year. A local

historian tells us “it is the only non-private pub/bar

in London that does not have a TV screen in your face.

(Up the art of conversation!).” marienbad.ca

Congratulations to Alieska Robles and the amazing

Forest City Cookbook team! The ambitious project

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that inspired London’s culinary community can

now be called “an international award-winning

cookbook,” as the Canadian winner of the 2019

Gourmand World Cookbook Awards in two

categories: “Best Self-Published Book in English in

Canada” and “Best Digital Book for Sale in Canada.”


Meaghan Biddle (manager, barista and coffee educator)

and Alastair Smyth (barista) of Locomotive Espresso

will be competing in the Canadian National Barista

Championships the weekend of March 15–17 in Toronto.

Good luck! locomotiveespresso.com

Mama Chena Coffee Co. is Alberto Sepulveda’s coffee

business based in London. Importing green coffee

beans from the family farm and others on the north

coast of Colombia, along the Sierra Nevada de Santa

Marta mountain range, they supply direct trade

green coffee beans to a number of southwestern

Ontario roasters who help share their story. Clients

include O-Joe Coffee (Mt. Brydges), Blackwater

Coffee Co. (Sarnia), Chance Coffee (Windsor),

Coastal Coffee Co. (Zurich, Ontario), Patrick’s Beans

(London), Hasbeans (London), CommonWealth

Coffee (London), Stratford Coffee Co. (Stratford), and

Smile Tiger (Kitchener). mamachena.com

The new culinary team at Dundas St.’s The Root

Cellar remains committed to forging meaningful

relationships with local, organic, and sustainable

farms in Southwestern Ontario with worker-owned

On the Move Organics, which continues to expand the

network of organic farmers and producers they work

with. Look for the new On the Move Organics location at

The Market at Western Fair. onthemoveorganics.ca

Shelbys Food Express on Horton Street has taken the

city by storm with generous servings of traditional

and fusion Middle Eastern cuisine. Now there is a

new sibling — Bistro 644 — on Richmond Row,

in the space previously occupied by Sakata at 644

Richmond Street. shelbysfoodexpress.com

At the new Quebec-based Copper Branch on

Richmond Row, they’re offering a 100% plant-based

power food menu. Chef-inspired menu items include

power bowls, burgers, sandwiches, all-day breakfast,

power smoothies, organic coffees and teas, and allnatural

beverages. CopperBranch.ca

Chris MacGregor and Valentino “Val” De Franco

have opened up a new Shoeless Joe’s restaurant

franchise at 89 King St., across from Budweiser

Gardens. Expect an urban feel, with a sports bar

focus. “We’re going to be open late,” says MacGregor.

“So even after the London Knights have played or a

concert has let out, patrons can come over for drinks

and great food.” shoelessjoes.ca.

eatdrink: The Local Food & Drink Magazine


For 35 years, Stratford Chefs School, a not-for-profit

career college focused on innovative, hands-on

training of high quality, aspiring chefs and culinary

entrepreneurs, has set the standard of excellence

for culinary training in Canada. In addition to its

renowned 32-week professional cookery program,

the School recently launched a unique 16-week

“Cook: Basic – Level 1 Diploma” program to run

June 3–September 20. Teaching the basics of

classical cookery and pastry coupled with theory

classes focused on cuisine and hospitality, this

program is perfect for those embarking on a second

career or interested in fast-tracking culinary goals.


Interested in more recreational cooking classes?

Stratford Chefs School continues its Open Kitchen

program from March–October, devoted to home

cooks and food-lovers looking for hands-on, skillbuilding

classes that are informative and fun. $35 to

$85 per session. stratfordchef.com/open-kitchen

Herald Haus Brewing Co. is now open, in the

extensively refurbished historic Herald building

at 21 Market Place, former headquarters of The

Stratford Herald newspaper. Owned and operated

by Daniel J. Graver, the team includes head brewer

Jeff Macdonald and assistant brewer John Zippel.

Drop by the taproom for expertly poured pints, cans

for purchase and an exclusive menu prepared by

The Hub kitchen team next door. heraldhaus.com

Old Man & Son, launched by Jessie Votary and the

folks at The Red Rabbit and Okazu 85 Downie as

another opportunity to offer fair wages and year

round employment, is open for breakfast and lunch.

Early risers (open at 7am) can expect super fluffy

pancakes, smoked bacon and sausage, avocado

toast and other honest fare with delicious twists.

Lunch includes an interesting selection of burgers

and sandwiches. 75 Wellington St., 519-305-7575,


March/April 2019 | 57

Steve Walters’ mission is to create a more optimistic

future through the world of food. The Hub Fine

Foods & Market will open this spring in the former

location of Bard’s, followed by The Hub Butchery.

Walters, as Agency Creative Director of the

market, promises a bakery, freshly prepared foods,

specialty and local products and fresh produce —

“a welcome destination for the food enthusiast.”

The Restaurant at The Bruce is hosting two special

events in March. Savour Afternoon Tea on March

10, with a delectable mix of traditional and New

100% Local — from Our Farmers to Your Table

Hormone & Drug-Free

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• Metzger Meat Products • Lena’s Lamb

• Blanbrook Bison Farm • Little Sisters Chicken

• Glengyle Farm Organics

The Market at Western Fair District: SAT 8–3; SUN 10–2

226-376-6328 • www.thevillagemeatshop.ca

willie’s café

630 Dundas Street, Old East Village.


58 | March/April 2019

Canadiana nibbles served alongside a choice of

20 loose leaf teas curated by their certified tea

sommelier. A Sugar Shack Dinner will be held

on March 23, with each of five courses “mapleinspired”

with all local Canadian ingredients.

Reservations required. And don’t forget the Bruce’s

Local Nights on Mondays. Enjoy an an innovative

menu at a super price. visitstratford.ca/partner/


Weather permitting, the annual Swan Parade/

Release will officially begin at 2pm on April 7, but

the family fun runs noon–3pm with carriage rides,

street performers and a quest for decorated pop-up

swan topiaries. Make your way downtown to Lakeside

Drive where the swans are led by the Stratford Police

Pipes and Drums. visitstratford.ca/swans

Puck’s Plenty Early Spring Foraging begins April 20

with naturalist/forager Peter Blush. Search forest

trails for wild edibles and learn to harvest these

delicious gems of nature sustainably. Recipes will

also be supplied. 96 Birmingham St., 10am–1pm, $35.

Call 519 271-3726 to reserve your space.

The Milky Whey Fine Cheese Shop hosts a “This

Cheese, That Wine” tasting and pairing event on

April 6. visitstratford.ca/partner/The-Milky-Whey-


Stop by Junction 56 Distillery on a Saturday (11am–

noon) for a lively and informative tour. Be sure to try

Sugar Shack, maple-flavoured moonshine, as well

as Fireshine (cinnamon) and Eclipse (anise) flavours,

just three of several wonderful flavours offered. The

award-winning distillery also specializes in vodka

and gin. 45 Cambria St., $15, junction56.ca

The Slow Food Perth County Sunday Market

runs 10am–2pm indoors at downtown Festival

Marketplace Mall until May, when it moves to the

Market Square at City Hall. You’ll find local produce,

bread, soup, sweets, soap, healthy treats, crafty

things, lacto-fermented foods, cheese, grass-fed

meats and garden seeds. .slowfoodperthcounty.ca

Stratford Farmers’ Market, a year-round market

operating since 1855, offers fresh produce, crafts,

meat and cheese at Stratford Rotary Complex-

Agriplex, 353 McCarthy Rd, Saturdays 7 am–12

noon. 519-271-5130. www.stratfordfairgrounds.com

Revival House is serving Winter/Spring dinners

Thursday–Saturday and a Weekend Brunch

11am–2pm both days. A special Brunch Buffet

will be offered celebrating Easter (April 21)

and Mother’s Day (May 12) from 10am–2pm.

Reservations recommended.

Revival House is also serving up amazing

live entertainment. The Stratford Symphony

eatdrink.ca |@eatdrinkmag

Orchestra presents more of the Classical Brunch

series on Sundays April 14 and May 5 at 11:30am.

The $40 admission includes a special brunch

menu, musical performance and a $20 tax receipt

(stratfordsymphonyorchestra.ca). Jully Black,

“Canada’s Queen of R&B Soul” (CBC Music) will

grace the Revival House stage for a show with

her full band on Thursday, March 14. A Celtic

Celebration concert will be hosted by Stratford’s

own Rant Maggie Rant with a 2pm matinee

performance on St Patrick’s Day, Sunday, March

17. Toronto’s Neil Young’uns return March 30,

bring the audience “the closest you’ll ever get to

the real Neil!” On Saturday, April 13, guests will

groove to the 10-piece new roots reggae band The

Human Rights. Two-time JUNO Award-winning

singer-songwriter Hawksley Workman brings

his signature blend of anthemic folk and showstopping

vocals for one special night on May 21.

Revival House offers limited pre-concert

preferred seating. Enjoy dinner and the show from

your seat! 519-273-3424, www.revival.house

Around the Region

McCully’s Hill Farm hosts a weekly Maple Syrup

Festival in March. Sugar Bush Tours include a wagon

ride through the sugar bush, a guided tour of our

sugar shack and a visit with the farm animals. Enjoy

Pancake Brunch served with McCully’s own maple

syrup, McCully’s own maple pork sausage and maple

baked beans and fruit. 10:30am–2pm, Saturdays and

Sundays in March, 4074 Perth Line 9. 519 284-2564,


Grand Bend’s Dark Horse Winery is hosting a St.

Paddy’s Day celebration on March 17. visitstratford.


Tillsonburg’s Ottercreek Woodworks, founded by

carpenter and craftsman Dave Schonberger, uses

only local, sustainably-harvested hardwoods to

fashion distinctive live-edge charcuterie boards.

Popular “Tree to Table” board-making workshops are

also offered. ottercreekwoodworks.myshopify.com

Steelhead Food Co. recently moved into their own

processing facility and are excited to offer fresh

locally processed fish that is cleaned, cut and

processed in-house. Based in St. Thomas, they

offer a huge selection of premium quality fish and

seafood — fresh, frozen, and smoked — to most of

southwestern Ontario. steelheadfoodco.ca

Ride the Bine provides local beer, wine, and cider

tours. With a goal to get people closer to their

food’s origins — owners Amanda Dooney and

Susan Judd grew up on farms — Ride the Bine’s

fleet of Mercedes-Benz Sprinters provide a safe

eatdrink: The Local Food & Drink Magazine

and easy way to get to some of the coolest spots in

Southwestern Ontario. Launched in Norfolk County

with great success, Ride the Bine is expanding and

now also showcases many London and surrounding

area gems. ridethebine.com/london-tours

The Village Teapot in Ilderton (see story this issue)

continues their popular home-cooked Sunday

Roasts with all the trimmings. Service is from

noon–2pm and 5pm–7pm for $18.95 per person,

and only $9.95 for children under 12. On April 7,

there is Roast Chicken; May 12 (Mother’s Day, open

evening only) is Roast Lamb; May 26 is Roast Beef;

and June 16 (Father’s Day) is Prime Rib at $24.95.

Vegetarian options are also available. Reservations

are required. 519-298-TEAS (8327)

The Bayfield Public House, the restaurant of the

Bayfield Brewing Co. and adjacent to their soonto-open

Tap Room, is now open. Historical charm

meets craft beer and a unique dining experience,

with feature beers like their own Canadian Pale Ale

paired with gourmet dishes, delectable desserts,

and cannot-miss specials. bayfieldbrewingco.com

The 2019 Terroir Symposium in downtown Toronto

will explore the choices we make and how they

affect the growth, change and collective identity

of the hospitality, food and beverage industry. The

always-rewarding annual event will offer more

main stage programming with 12-minute talks, two

in-depth panel discussions, and six industry-focused

workshops. terroirsymposium.com/overview

LUNCH Wed to Fri 11:30–2:30

DINNER from 5pm daily

432 Richmond Street

at Carling • London


a 3-course prix fixe

menu option



Did you know we are sharing “BUZZ” every day

through social media? Follow us @ eatdrinkmag

and join the conversation!

We want your BUZZ!

Do you have culinary news or upcoming events

that you’d like us to share?

Every issue, Eatdrink reaches more than

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60 | March/April 2019

eatdrink.ca |@eatdrinkmag


Tea for More than Two

A Literary Tea Party

by Alison Walsh

Review by DARIN COOK

My goal in this Eatdrink column

has been to present various

topics from the food industry

that have been represented in

titles across the global bookshelf. In her new

book, A Literary Tea Party: Blends and Treats

for Alice, Bilbo, Dorothy, Jo, and Book Lovers

Everywhere (Skyhorse Publishing, 2018),

Alison Walsh, a food blogger and lifelong

reader, has taken a different approach by

searching for what food can be drawn out

of books. Starting with classic titles, she

concocts tea and treat recipes inspired by the

books’ meals, characters, or storylines.

Certain recipes are born out of a character’s

food preferences. Piglet’s love of “haycorns” in

Winnie-the-Pooh led to Walsh’s interpretation

of edible acorns by combining Asiago and

Swiss cheese with crushed almonds. They are

simple to make, look adorable on a platter,

and taste delicious. These tiny savoury

cheeseballs are paired with Hundred Acre tea

(black tea featuring hazelnut, vanilla, and

honeybush). Some recipes come from foods

directly mentioned in a book, like the “muffs”

(sweet potato and bacon puff

pastries) made by Hannah in

Little Women, or the Turkish

delight and hot chocolate

consumed by Edmund in

The Lion, the Witch, and

the Wardrobe. Others are

conjured from a book’s

theme, such as Star-crossed

Focaccia, which has nothing

to do with Romeo and Juliet

except for the stars cut out

of the dough to symbolize

the lovers’ relationship in

Shakespeare’s play.

Most of the 45 recipes are


with one of the

23 tea blends or five alternative

beverages, such as the Raspberry Cordial

made famous in Anne of Green Gables. One

pairing that honours The Wizard of Oz is that

of Cyclone cookies with Emerald City tea

(green-tinged herbal tea with peppermint,

spearmint, and lemon grass). And there

are Fairy Dust Star cookies paired with

Second Star to the Right tea (Earl Grey tea

with vanilla and lavender) to be served as

“an in-flight snack while on your way to

Neverland” while reading Peter Pan.

Not everyone likes

themed parties, but tea

drinkers tend to love them

a lot. A good deal of that

attraction might stem from

the Mad Hatter tea party

scene in Alice in Wonderland.

This iconic tea party has

an obvious place in this

book with a delightful

menu, including Bread

and Butterflies (dainty

cucumber sandwiches

shaped like butterflies) and

Drink Me tea (white peony

Author Alison Walsh

eatdrink: The Local Food & Drink Magazine

tea with pear). Walsh suggests six other tea

party ideas with appropriate menus, such

as Aslan’s Feast featuring recipes specific to

The Chronicles of Narnia or a Murder Most

Delicious tea party with recipes based on

Sherlock Holmes stories and Agatha Christie

mysteries, including Blood Orange Scones and

London Fog Lattes.

Throughout the book, Walsh provides

helpful tips she has stumbled upon in her

recipe testing. For instance, when preparing

Swiss roll type sandwiches, using oatmeal or

potato bread allows for easier rolling because

these have a higher moisture content and are

less likely to dry out. When she gets into candy

making with Peppermint Humbugs, to pay

tribute to the word used by the curmudgeonly

Scrooge in A Christmas Carol, she suggests

coating your gloved hands and kitchen scissors

March/April 2019 | 61

with cooking spray to make it easier to work

with the hot, sticky, melted sugar.

As Sara Letourneau writes in the book’s

introduction: “If literature is meant to reflect

life, then why not use food, a part of our

everyday lives, to make that reflection truly

believable?” By drawing on her knowledge of

literature and inserting quotes alongside her

recipes, Walsh has invented tea party gems

in her own kitchen and passed them on to

all book lovers through A Literary Tea Party,

proving that dishes inspired by fiction can

become reality, because food is real, even in

make-believe worlds.

DARIN COOK is a freelance writer from Chatham who

keeps himself well-read and well-fed by visiting the

bookstores and restaurants of London.

The Raven Cocktail

Then this ebony bird beguiling my sad fancy into smiling,

By the grave and stern decorum of the countenance it wore,

“Though thy crest be shorn and shaven, thou,” I said, “art sure no craven,

Ghastly grim and ancient Raven wandering from the Nightly shore —

Tell me what thy lordly name is on the Night’s Plutonian shore!”

Quoth the Raven “Nevermore.”

Inspired by Edgar Allan Poe’s poem “The Raven”

3 blackberries

3–5 mint leaves (plus 2 extra sprigs for garnish)

1 ½ oz white rum

½ cup pomegranate juice, chilled

Makes 1 cocktail

Use a muddler to crush the blackberries and 3–5 mint

leaves in the bottom of a cocktail shaker (I used 3 mint


Pour in the rum and pomegranate juice. Secure the lid

onto the shaker and shake to combine.

Pour into a wine glass. Strain out the berry pulp and

leaves or, if you prefer, leave them in. I like the visual

effect and extra flavour they add, so I leave them in.

Top with a sprig of mint and serve to a gloomy feathered


Recipe excerpted from Alison’s Wonderland

Recipes: Recipes Inspired by Classic Literature

(wonderlandrecipes.com) by Alison Walsh.

All rights reserved.

62 | March/April 2019

eatdrink.ca |@eatdrinkmag

The Lighter Side

Home is Where the Hygge Is



was out shopping recently and happened

to spend a few minutes browsing the

shelves of scented candles. It was

interesting to see how many of the

choices were happy, nostalgic treats like

sugar cookies, apple pie, and vanilla birthday

cake. All instantly conjured up with the quick

rasp of a match. This ties in nicely with the

many popular books available which outline

how to create what the Danes call “hygge”

(pronounced hoo-gah), a now over-used buzz

word that defines that

snug feeling of cradling

a mug of hot chocolate

in front of the fire whilst

wearing fancy socks that

have never had cat hair

on them.

The reality is that while

most of us absolutely

do crave this feeling, we

are also excruciatingly

busy. When time permits

(often at the ghastly hour of 10 pm when we

may still be folding laundry by the light of the

dryer) we still feel guilty about failing to do

more, be better. Women are especially prone

to this kind of anguish and tend to undervalue

what they accomplish every day.

Yet small things are important and their

effect is cumulative.

Despite now being over six feet tall, my own

sons can still wax sentimental about going

to the market when they were small. Even

though I myself was often exhausted and

shuffling with a coffee, they only remember

The Cheese Ladies. These sparkling women

took a genuine interest in them every

Saturday and shaved off crumbly shards

of Cheshire or offered squares of buttery

Havarti, all the while earnestly listening.

From Colby to New Zealand Cheddar they

tried them all, and my eldest son began

shyly bringing a drawing each week which

the women proudly displayed till it curled

and faded. Kindness and sincerity are good

business partners, as it happens. We bought a

lot of cheese!

I was extremely moved recently by a tender

anecdote delivered at a memorial service. A

young woman, the eldest granddaughter, held

everyone’s attention by eloquently describing

the shivery chill of a wet bathing suit after

a long afternoon of swimming, and her

squealing delight as her grandmother wound

her into a soft, thick towel which she had

thoughtfully toasted

in the dryer first. She

was then presented

with a cherry

Popsicle, before

skipping back to

play. So simple. But

it’s a feeling she can

rekindle throughout

her life: feeling loved,

cared for, cherished.

There are other

things. A child’s excited pride in unclipping

the Tupperware lid at soccer time. “Guys! It’s

watermelon!” A friend of mine once marveled

at her own mother’s help after the birth of

a child. “She made chicken, she dried sheets

outside. And she folded laundry perfectly —

like they do in the store!”

Many of us know and dread the endless

preparations that go with camping. But

ultimately, who remembers the homemade

gourmet foil packets that cook uncertainly in

the ashes of the fire for dinner? No one — not

when there are s’mores!

Light a scented candle by all means — but

look carefully at your own life, gentle reader.

You may already be creating far more hygge

than you know.

SUE SUTHERLAND-WOOD is a freelance writer and

regular contributor to Eatdrink. Read more of Sue’s work

on her blog www.speranzanow.com

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