Jamie Kennedy

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Ten things Jamie Kennedy can’t live without

This month, the city’s most famous locavore releases his first cookbook in more than a decade. Here, the 10 things he can’t live without

Ten things Jamie Kennedy can't live without
01
My knife
I’ve been using a general-­purpose Global chef’s knife for a decade. I like the way it feels in my hand: a solid everyday work tool.

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Restaurants

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Duggan’s Parkdale Brewery isn’t getting Jamie Kennedy after all

Top Ten New Restaurants 2009

(Image: Lee Towndrow)

Last month, we reported that Jamie Kennedy would be overseeing the kitchen at Duggan’s Parkdale Brewery, the new microbrewery-cum-restaurant that’s currently operating as a pop-up at 1346 Queen West. After local beer blog Canadian Beer News broke the story (citing brewery owner Michael Duggan as its source), a spokesperson for Duggan’s confirmed that Kennedy was expected to assume the executive chef role once the brewery opened in the fall.

Those announcements, it now seems, were a bit premature. According to a spokesperson for the chef, Kennedy has decided against teaming up with the brewery. “It was simply a leak—source unknown—that happened while Jamie was still weighing his decision,” says Joanna Dickins, communications manager for Jamie Kennedy Kitchens. “While Jamie was excited about the prospect, after careful consideration (and before signing the formal agreement) he decided it wasn’t a good fit for him and his company.”

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Food Events

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Feast like a cowboy at Evergreen’s Urban Rodeo

(Images: Urban Rodeo, Edward Pond; Jamie Kennedy, Davida Aronovitch; chicken dish, Renée Suen)

(Images: Urban Rodeo, Edward Pond; Jamie Kennedy, Davida Aronovitch; chicken dish, Renée Suen)

This Saturday, the city’s food lovers will face a difficult choice: spend the night bidding farewell to the three-year-old Toronto Underground Market, or attend the debut of Urban Rodeo and BBQ, a totally new food event hosted by nature-loving non-profit Evergreen (and supported by media partner Toronto Life). The fundraiser will see 40 chefs spread out over 10 culinary stations, each devoted to a different kind of food, including organic chicken from Gilead’s Jamie Kennedy and offal-infused dishes from Buca’s Rob Gentile (other stations include “Wheat,” “Shellfish” and “Pork and Maple”). Best to arrive hungry and take advantage of the themed festivities—mechanical bull rides, lasso lessons, carnival games, music from local blues duo catl and more—before you make the most of your ticket, which includes all you can eat and drink. So, country lovers, ditch the Dakota Tavern for a night and take a rest from the Rock ‘n’ Horse Saloon. The rodeo’s in town.

Sept. 27. $150 (food & drink incl.). Evergreen Brick Works, 550 Bayview Ave., 416-596-1495, evergreen.ca

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Restaurants

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Jamie Kennedy signs on at Parkdale brewpub 

(Image: Davida Aronovitch)

(Image: Davida Aronovitch)

 

Duggan’s Parkdale Brewery isn’t messing around when it comes to food. Canadian Beer News reports that the Bellwoods-style business, coming this fall to 1346 Queen West, has joined forces with Toronto’s original celebrity chef. As executive chef, Kennedy will “oversee menu development and staffing of the kitchen,” which sounds like a somewhat hands-off role—understandable for someone who already has three major food businesses on the go (Kennedy’s current projects include fine-dining restaurant Windows in Niagara and Gilead wine bar in Corktown). According to a spokesperson for Duggan’s, Kennedy’s brewpub menu likely won’t make its debut until the brewery’s grand opening in October.

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Recipes

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Prep School: Jamie Kennedy shows three ways to cook with sour spring rhubarb

Jamie Kennedy of Gilead Café eats with the seasons, and in springtime, rhubarb is one of his favourite ingredients. Here, he shares sweet ways to treat the sour stalks

Prep School: Jamie Kennedy shows three ways to cook with sour spring rhubarb

In a jelly. Cut a kilogram of rhubarb stems into small pieces. Bring to a boil with a cup of water, then cover and simmer for 15 minutes or until soft. Strain the liquid for three hours through a cheesecloth-lined colander into a large bowl. In another pot, place two and a half cups of sugar, 25 drops of pectin and the strained rhubarb liquid. Boil until it thickens, about 15 minutes. Pour into a sterilized jar to set.

As a compote. In a large pot, mix one cup of sugar with three cups of sliced strawberries and three cups of rhubarb stems, diced into one-centimetre pieces. Stew over medium heat for 45 minutes, stirring occasionally. Serve warm over vanilla ice cream sprinkled with granola.

In simple syrup. Roughly chop six medium stems of rhubarb and place in a large pot. Add half a cup each of sugar and water. Bring to a slow boil and cook for 15 minutes. Strain and refrigerate overnight. Add the syrup to champagne or club soda for a tart thirst-quencher.

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Openings

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Introducing: Gilead, Jamie Kennedy’s wine bar redux in Corktown

Introducing: Gilead Wine Bar

Name: Gilead Wine Bar
Contact Info: 4 Gilead Pl., 647-288-0680, jamiekennedy.ca, @ChefJKennedy
Neighbourhood: Corktown
Executive Chef and Owner: Celeb chef Jamie Kennedy, whose daytime operation Gilead Café operates out of the same space

The Food: Gilead marks Kennedy’s first return to wine bar style dinner service since 2010, when the chef sold his popular Church Street restaurant and transformed his haute dining room at the Gardiner Museum into a casual café. The menu reflects Kennedy’s signature brand of simple, hyper-seasonal cuisine made with local ingredients. Entrées include braised short ribs, vegetarian cabbage rolls and various lake fish, which are cured, smoked, sautéed in butter and blended into a creamy chowder. Fans of Kennedy’s previous restaurants will recognize some holdovers, like braised beef poutine topped with gooey aged cheddar.

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Restaurants

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Jamie Kennedy Wine Bar 2.0 is opening in Corktown

(Image: Davida Aronovitch)

(Image: Davida Aronovitch)

Jamie Kennedy, Toronto’s original celeb chef, has an on-again, off-again relationship with full-fledged restaurateurship. In 2010, he sold his popular wine bar and transformed his haute-cuisine restaurant at the Gardiner Museum into a casual lunch spot (with which he recently cut ties). He also had a brief fling with à la carte dinner service at his Corktown café, Gilead, but the concept didn’t stick. Now Kennedy is turning the space at 4 Gilead Place back into a regular nighttime destination with Gilead Wine Bar, a permanent version of Kennedy’s popular weekly dinner series by the same name. Fans of Kennedy’s previous evening incarnations can look forward to a familiar lineup of hyper-seasonal dishes, local wines and—perhaps most exciting—a reservation book. The new restaurant opens on December 5.

The Goods

Weddings

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Wedding Guide: the best catering companies in Toronto

Where to Find It: Caterers

(Image: Marigolds and Onions Catering)


À la Carte Kitchen
2 Thorncliffe Park Dr. (at Overlea Blvd.), Unit 43, 416-971-4068
Founders Simon Kattar (a chef) and Brian King (a sales and events professional) count royalty and other VIPs among their clients; they move effortlessly from large-scale events (at Roy Thomson Hall, the ROM and the Ontario Science Centre) to more intimate settings. The kitchen’s roster of chefs might start a meal with a chilled foie gras–fig jam appetizer with sauternes gelées and frisée-almond salad. Kattar strives to include local, organic ingredients, and has been pursuing his Lebanese roots with Middle Eastern–French cuisine, as in speckled trout with bulgur and green onion salad. Cocktail menu from $17.50 per person. Sit-down and buffet dinner $30–$60 per person (with a maximum of 2,000), plus wait staff and chef’s charges. No charge for tasting if event is booked. By appointment.


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Food Events

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Top chefs pair local food with craft brews at the upcoming Brewer’s Plate Toronto

Brewers-Plate-Toronto

Six years in and the earnest annual charity beerfest started by Jamie Kennedy, Slow Food Toronto, Local Food Plus and Green Enterprise Toronto to push sustainable food and drink in the city has become oddly almost trendy. There are artisanal beers from small-batch breweries, dishes made from regional ingredients, top Toronto chefs doing the cooking and a conspicuous locavore ethos (with proceeds going to charity). But the trend quotient ends there: the classy event on April 17 costs $125 per ticket, the attire is essentially suit-and-tie and the purpose is to raise dollars for the cause. This year, the roster counts chefs Chris McDonald (Cava), Lora Kirk (Ruby Watchco) and Brad Long (Café Belong), and the long list of local brewers includes microbreweries like Amsterdam and Steam Whistle serving suds alongside smaller shops like Beau’s and Nickelbrook. Find out more at brewersplatetoronto.org.

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Closings

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Jamie Kennedy is stepping away from the café at the Gardiner Museum

(Image: Richard Winchell)

On the same day that the ROM revealed that it’s closing C5, The Gardiner Museum, across the street, announced its own changing of the guard. On April 29, Jamie Kennedy is handing over control of the casual Gardiner Café to long-running Toronto caterer À la Carte Kitchen, though Kennedy will stay on as preferred caterer for weddings and other private events. The museum was previously the site of Jamie Kennedy at the Gardiner, the chef’s flagship fine dining restaurant, which he closed in 2009 during a previous contraction of his culinary empire.

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Food Events

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Weekly Eater: Toronto food events for December 17 to 23

Porchetta and Co. celebrates two years in business on Thursday with $1 sandwiches (Image: Andrew Brudz)

Monday, December 17

  • Monday Night Dinners at Local Kitchen and Wine Bar: Every Monday night, Local Kitchen serves a $40 prix fixe menu of Italian fare with half-price wine bottles and no corkage fee. 1710 Queen St. W., 416-534-6700. Find out more »
  • 86’D With Ivy Knight—Annual Sagittarian Ball: Get festive in your best cocktail attire while enjoying complimentary hors d’oeuvres from Stasis Preserves, mead tasting from Rosewood Estates and cheap cocktails made by pros from the Canadian Professional Bartenders Association. The Drake, 1150 Queen St. W., 416-531-5042. Find out more »
  • Burger Mondays: Enjoy $5 burgers and $5 pints on Mondays, 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., at the Gladstone Melody Bar. Gladstone Hotel, 1214 Queen St. W., 416-531-4635. Find out more »
  • Lettuce Wrap Night at Chantecler: Chantecler’s popular lettuce wrap night is now taking place twice a week. Come out on Sunday and Monday nights for lettuce wraps with meats, assorted pickles and condiments for $21 per person until 1 a.m.—or until the food runs out. Chantecler, 1320 Queen St. W., 416-628-3586. Find out more »
  • Make, Don’t Buy—Chocolates for Beginners: As part of the Depanneur’s Make, Don’t Buy series of DIY gift workshops, join Emily Zimmerman and learn how to make old-fashioned creamy ganache truffles, chocolate bark with toppings of your choice and crunchy chili-cornflake bars, all using organic, Fairtrade and locally processed Chocosol chocolate. The Depanneur, 1033 College St., 416-828-1990. Find out more »

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Food Events

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Weekly Eater: Toronto food events for December 3 to December 9

Foodies on Foot leads their Streetcar Food Tour on Saturday (Image: Robert Taylor)

Monday, December 3

  • Monday Night Dinners at Local Kitchen and Wine Bar: Every Monday night, Local Kitchen serves a $40 prix fixe menu of Italian fare with half-price wine bottles and no corkage fee. 1710 Queen St. W., 416-534-6700. Find out more »
  • 86’D With Ivy Knight: Third annual Battle Offal. The city’s top chefs prepare the gnarly bits for you to sample. Competitors include the Group of 7 Chefs, Beast, The Stop, the Tempered Chef, Nick and Nat’s Uptown 21, Richmond Station and GwaiLo. The Drake, 1150 Queen St. W., 416-531-5042. Find out more »
  • Burger Mondays: Enjoy $5 burgers and $5 pints on Mondays, 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., at the Gladstone Melody Bar. Gladstone Hotel, 1214 Queen St. W., 416-531-4635. Find out more »
  • Guiltless Dessert Indulgence: Learn how to use healthy alternatives to dairy, wheat and sugar. Menu includes chewy chocolate brownies, carrot pineapple cake, coconut mango pudding and jam dot cookies. Marni’s Kitchen, 26 Lauderdale Dr., 647-477-8131. Find out more »
  • Simple Healthy Meals in 30 Minutes: Learn to quickly prepare three delicious and healthy meals: winter salad with pine nuts, radicchio and Asian pears; penne with sausage, fennel and pecorino; and fresh fish with tomato sauce and cherry tomato couscous. The Chef Upstairs, 516 Mount Pleasant Rd., 416-544-9221. Find out more »
  • Workshop—Naturally Fermented Condiment Gift Pack: Holistic nutritionist Kate Leinweber leads a workshop that covers the how and why of simple fermentation while you prepare a delicious batch of homemade ketchup, mustard and relish, perfect for holiday gift giving. The Depanneur, 1033 College St., 416-828-1990. Find out more »

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Food Events

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Weekly Eater: Toronto food events for November 19 to November 25

Joshna Maharaj hosts a screening of Tampopo at the Revue on Thursday

Monday November 19

  • Monday Night Dinners at Local Kitchen and Wine Bar: Every Monday night, Local Kitchen serves a $40 prix fixe menu of Italian fare with half-price wine bottles and no corkage fee. 1710 Queen St. W., 416-534-6700. Find out more »
  • 86’D with Ivy Knight: Warm up with a flight of boozy hot chocolates by resident bartenders Gord Hannah and Sandy De Almeida and a marshmallow sampler bar from The Sweet Escape. The Drake, 1150 Queen St. W., 416-531-5042. Find out more »
  • Gourmet and Gluten-Free: Learn to prepare gluten-free meals with Marni Wasserman. The menu includes carrot-apple soup, brown-rice pesto pasta and saffron-laced quinoa. Marni’s Kitchen, 26 Lauderdale Dr., 647-477-8131. Find out more »
  • Turkish Delight: Join chef Jenelle Regnier-Davis for an exploration of western Asian cuisine, a mash-up of Mediterranean and Middle Eastern flavours. Highlights include grilled pine nut and dried-currant beef kofta, tomato-bulgur pilaf with fresh coriander and Turkish coffee custard. Dish Cooking Studio, 390 Dupont St., 416-920-5559. Find out more »
  • Pasta Goodness: Paola Faiella leads a workshop on fresh pasta dishes, the ultimate cold-weather comfort food. The menu includes pappardelle with boar ragù and penne with asiago cheese and braised lamb shanks. Kingsway LCBO, 2946 Bloor St. W., 416-239-3065. Find out more »
  • The Dinner Party at the Great Hall: Alexandra Feswick hosts a dinner inspired by Judy Chicago’s legendary 1979 art installation, featuring an all-star lineup of female Toronto chefs making dishes dedicated to the women who inspire them. Serving the meal will be some of the city’s top male chefs. The Great Hall, 1087 Queen St. W., 647-381-3401. Find out more »
  • From Scratch Cooking Workshop Series—Jamming with Manning Canning: This week, learn to make caramel-apple jam. Eastminster United Church, 310 Danforth Ave. Find out more »

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Food Events

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Gallery: Susur Lee, Michael Stadtländer and other notable Toronto chefs prepare soups of all kinds at Soupstock 2012

Soupstock 2012

(Image: Renée Suen)

An estimated 40,000 soup-seeking revellers and 200 chefs traveled to Woodbine Park last weekend to attend Soupstock 2012, the one-day culinary protest festival designed to raise awareness for the fight against the proposed mega-quarry in the Township of Melancthon. Building on the momentum generated from last year’s Foodstock, the Canadian Chef’s Congress and the David Suzuki Foundation convened the weekend’s festivities. Regardless of political affiliation, the sheer magnitude of the event was impressive: it’s a rare occasion that offers that many big-name city chefs (and, for that matter, that much soup).

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Food Events

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Weekly Eater: Toronto food events for October 22 to 28

Cask Days takes place at the Evergreen Brick Works this weekend, complete with a Halloween costume judging contest (Image: Connie Tsang)

Monday October 22

  • Monday Night Dinners at Local Kitchen and Wine Bar: Every Monday night, Local Kitchen serves a $40 prix fixe menu of Italian fare with half-price wine bottles and no corkage fee. 1710 Queen St. W., 416-534-6700. Find out more »
  • 86’D with Ivy Knight: This week, celebrate with the chefs from Soupstock, and enjoy a tasty night of pairing Acadian Sturgeon caviar with Stillwater vodka. The Drake, 1150 Queen St. W., 416-531-5042. Find out more »
  • Piola’s Monday Night Mixer: Piola’s weekly aperitivo Italiano, with cocktail and beer specials and complimentary snacks. 1165 Queen St. W., 416-477-4652. Find out more »
  • Burger Mondays: Enjoy $5 burgers and $5 pints on Mondays, 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., at the Gladstone Melody Bar. Gladstone Hotel, 1214 Queen St. W., 416-531-4635. Find out more »
  • Veggin’ Comfortably Workshop: Marni Wasserman demonstrates how easy it can be to switch over to a more veg-friendly lifestyle. Menu includes butternut squash, lentil and coconut soup, arame soba noodle salad, marinated kaleslaw salad and black bean burgers. Marni’s Kitchen, 26 Lauderdale Dr., 647-477-8131. Find out more »
  • Sustainable Living and Ethical Eating—Cooking With a Conscience: Learn simple tips for a greener, guilt-free kitchen. The menu includes leek and golden beet barley risotto with spicy kale chips and whole roasted organic chicken infused. Dish Cooking Studio, 390 Dupont St., 416-920-5559. Find out more »
  • Luscious Greens and Grains: Chef and cookbook author Nettie Cronish prepares tasty and nutritious leafy green and grain dishes. Menu includes pot barley split pea soup with Shiitake mushrooms, spinach and dill and hot and sour buckwheat noodle salad. Kingsway LCBO, 2946 Bloor St. W., 416-239-3065. Find out more »

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