Sunday, March 1, 2015

Restaurants Canada Show

Chef Lynn Crawford
I was very lucky to be able to go to the Restaurants Canada trade show today which is a massive show that is dedicated to all kinds of things related to the Foodservice Industry.

 Imaging all the restaurants that are in Toronto only.. that's a huge amount of Restaurants and they all need food, supplies, and everything from things that cook, clean, keep track of the money, uniforms, containers and every little detail that it takes to make up a restaurant including the food and you will probably find a vendor for it at this trade show.   It is being held at the Direct Energy Centre at Exhibition Place this weekend, Mar 1-3rd and is only open to Food and Beverage Industry people but you will most likely be seeing a lot of the food products that were at the show at your local cafe, restaurant or even grocery store.
Chef Lynn Crawford, and judges and Chef Vikram Vij
Chef Vikram Vij
Then on to check out all the booths and sample some foods and see if there were any trends or new products that were mind blowing.  I don't know if I saw any mind blowing products but I did see a lot of trends and tasted a lot of very tasty products.

The TRENDS:

1st Trend:   I saw a lot of GELATO,  there must have been at least 4 or 5 places serving up Gelato.  No complaints from me as this is one of my favourite things.  The couple of flavours of Gelato or Ice cream that I tried were so creamy and flavourful.  I hope more places start serving it up in my area this summer because I will be standing in line for some.

2nd Trend:   Fried things.  There were spices for fries.  I tried one that tasted like Ketchup chips,  There were loads of battered and fried things like Arancini, and fried chicken, cheese sticks, and all kinds of other concoctions.

            





3rd Trend:  Healthy products like Hemp hearts, gluten free products, yoghurts, sauces, dairy free products etc.  Allergy education and more. Lot's and lots of different loose leaf specialty teas.


4th Trend:  Bread, carbs are not dead even though people are going crazy for gluten-free products.  I spotted some of my favourite bread makers like Fred's Bread, Ace Bakery and a few more breads and pastry vendors.


5th Trend:  All kinds of technology to make the restaurants run like machines, from fancy ovens, to dishwashing machines and scanners that promote, track, order, do accounting and all sorts of things.


A few other interesting things I saw were Mustard in tubes and a spreadable spicy salami Nduja not sure on the spelling.  Interesting spread for charcuterie platter.


Overall what I saw was a lot.  It takes a lot of attention to detail to run a restaurant and as you can see from the turnover in restaurants in the city it's a hard business to keep going.

I always wanted to own a restaurant but never had the education, money or the energy to do it.  If I was going to startup a restaurant this show is a good place to go and meet some people and find out what you want to have in your restaurant.

I will probably go back tomorrow for some industry sessions and try some of the things I was too full to try today.

I saw a lot of interesting artistry as well with chocolate, sugar, cake and other creations on display.





















And there were a lot of Culinary Superstars and up and coming chefs wandering the shows red carpet.
 L-R rep for Abracadabra Signs & Designs M-Phil Freire, of Metropolis Factory -.Chef David Adjey 
I look forward to seeing some of the things I saw and tried in my restaurant adventures in the future.




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