Top chefs deliver delicious food at art galleries and museums
There’s a tasty cultural experience awaiting visitors to galleries and museums across Canada, where top chefs are designing artful menus.
At the Royal Ontario Museum(ROM) in Toronto newly appointed chef Corbin Romaszeski – a celebrity chef on the Food Network’s Dinner Party Wars and Crash My Kitchen – is reinterpreting Canadian classics, from truffle potato chip appetizers with fleur de sel to his lobster BLT with apple-wood smoked bacon and crispy fried tomatoes. Dining at the ROM is varied, with elegant plates served in the contemporary c5 Restaurant Lounge, and the spare, casual Food Studio Café dedicated to fresh, organic “world home cooking” to reinforce the connection between people and the planet.
Jamie Kennedy at the Gardiner showcases the Toronto chef’s locally inspired cuisine in a sleek, casual café. Like the Gardiner Museum itself – dedicated to collecting and creating ceramic art – the restaurant prepares healthy, accessible lunches (sandwiches, seasonal salads and Kennedy’s famed fries).
A tour of the new Art Gallery of Alberta in Edmonton isn’t complete without dinner at Zinc restaurant, a stunning glass-walled space with a glowing cobalt blue bar and views of Edmonton’s Arts District. Chef David Omar uses Alberta ingredients in dishes ranging from homey bison and chorizo meatloaf with carrot puree and “Mona” wild mushroom consommé with truffled wild rice, to braised veal leg with brie béchamel mac and cheese, all by the full portion or “by the bite”, for the indecisive diner.
From the stunning First People’s totem poles to the massive Group of Seven canvasses, the Canadian Museum of Civilization in Ottawa has all of the Canuck bases covered – even in the restaurant. Chef Michael Daniels has taken over from celebrity chef Georges Laurier and oversees the restaurant Café du Musée, with a killer view of Parliament Hill, and the more casual Voyageurs Cafeteria. The luncheon menu, which changes regularly, features dishes like chicken breast stuffed with goat cheese and cranberries with fall squash and wild rice, or wild Pacific salmon braised with fennel and leek in lemon broth.
And at the Art Gallery of Ontario in Toronto, FRANK is a destination restaurant, thanks to the incredible cuisine of executive chef Anne Yarymowich and her chef de cuisine Martha Wright. FRANK is a chic spot – Danish modern furnishing in a Frank Gehry-designed space – and the menu is equally stylish. Yarymowich has a unique way with comfort food. Using the best local and organic ingredients, she spins simple but sensational dishes like rare roast duck breast with beluga lentils and cloudberry sauce, or a ploughman’s lunch of local Mennonite sausage and local cheddar.