Thursday, September 6, 2012

Canadian Chefs Congress in Nova Scotia

If you visit here often, then you know I love to promote local produce, fish and meat and the wonderful men and women who raise them and those who create the most amazing dishes using them.  And may I say that Nova Scotia is a fantastic place for foodies.  So how could I NOT tell you about an exciting upcoming event that, in the past has been open only to chefs.   This year Nova Scotia will be hosting the third  Canadian Chefs' Congress at Evangeline Beach in Wolfville from September 16-18th.  It's the single biggest food event in Nova Scotia's history!

A little background, so you understand why I'm so excited.   This two day long biennial event brings together chefs, winemakers, growers, farmers, fishers, foragers and artisanal food producers from across Canada to celebrate Canada’s unique food culture in a setting that encourages discussion and fosters new relationships, a chance for industry members to get together and share, learn and forge relationships that help to build a national network of advocates of food culture,  through workshops, visits to farms, and naturally, eating events.
This year it's being held at the Land of Evangeline Campground in Grand Pre (near Wolfville) Nova Scotia - one of the most romantic places in Nova Scotia.  The photo above is at low tide and the one below - at high tide... one of the wonderful, magical natural wonders of The Bay of Fundy that occurs daily.  
And this year, for the first time, tickets will be sold to some events (i.e. a lunch & a dinner) to the rest of us.  You can find all the details HERE, but I thought I'd give you a taste...
  • SINGLE MALT LUNCHEON:  The Balvenie will host a five-course dining experience with rare single malt scotch pairings and Canada’s premier chefs including Tom Brodi, Paul Rogalski and Derek Dammann.
  • TRADITIONAL FISH FRY: The big opening event on the shoreline of the Bay of Fundy. You can join Chefs Michael Stadtl√§nder, Michael Howell, Chris Velden, Terry Vassello and Anthony Walsh for an old fashioned beach-side fish fry featuring Oceanwise Arctic Char and Sea Bream from Nova Scotia-based, Sustainable Blue. Guests will also be treated to Nova Scotia wines, craft beers and ciders. The above photo, courtesy of CCC is actually a fish fry from an earlier CCC. 
  • HOME GROWN PIG ROAST: To close the congress, guests are invited to join Chefs Chris Velden (Flying Apron Cookery) and Ryan Payne for a special open-air culinary event. Velden will roast, whole, two beautiful pigs raised by Rupert Jannasch from Ironwood Farm while Payne will prepare a host locally inspired side dishes. 
And because I couldn't have said it better, here's what Congress President, Michael Stadtl√§nder of Eigensinn Farm had to say about the workshops and other activities open to participants: 
“this year’s event will celebrate the rich culinary history and influence of Acadian culture in Canada and the world, focus on the importance and struggle of the small family farm and create dialogue to help to build a true identity and food culture in Canada, while bringing together talent from across the country to share and learn from one another in a celebratory atmosphere.”
If you're in the neighborhood, or planning a last minute foodie vacation, this is the place for you.  If you can't make it, perhaps you should look for something similar in your neck of the woods.

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