Get ready because GRAZE Toronto presented by Food Network Canada, is coming your way Friday, September 22 through Sunday, September 24, 2023 at Corus Quay and Sugar Beach.
GRAZE Toronto will feature some of the biggest names in the Canadian food scene and best-in-class food and drink offerings. Take part in chef-led tastings, cooking classes, innovative pop-ups, and more! The ultimate culinary experience is coming, and you won’t want to miss it.
Participating chefs from some of the GTA’s best and most buzzed-about restaurants will be announced at a later date along with the inside scoop on tickets. In the meantime, read on to see the initial line-up of chefs coming to GRAZE Toronto.
Suzanne Barr is one of North America’s most respected chefs with a signature flair for fresh comfort food. Suzanne is a resident judge on Food Network Canada’s series Wall of Chefs. Her literary works have been published in Foodism, Post City and Menu Mag, and her book My Ackee Tree: A Chef’s Memoir of Finding Home in the Kitchen was released in 2022.
She recognized the significance of food from an early age, growing up in a household with two novice chefs, where preparing every meal was an opportunity to bond as a family, learn about cultural roots, tell stories, and express love. This instilled a lifelong passion to value the significant role food plays in nourishing not just the body, but the soul. Her food is a reflection of her roots and is ever evolving as she travels the world refining her culinary and personal education. Chef Barr’s food philosophy is to create highly nutritious, flavourful, and comforting food with ingredients that are accessible, and all in an elevated way, that makes the ordinary surprisingly extraordinary.
Her impressive culinary repertoire includes: Head Chef/Owner at True True Diner in Toronto; Owner of Saturday Dinette; inaugural chef-in-residence at the Gladstone Hotel; a residency at Sand and Pearl Oyster Bar in Prince Edward County.
Related: Chef Suzanne Barr Will Make You Think About Your Dinner Plate Differently
Chef Massimo Capra came to Toronto in 1982, working in the kitchens of some of the most renowned restaurants in the city after an illustrious early career in Italy. In 1997, Chef Capra joined forces with Paolo Paolini, formerly of Splendido Restaurant, to open the hugely popular Mistura Restaurant. Chef Capra is the Chef and Owner of Boccone, Trattoria Veloce and Boccone Pronto in Toronto, and Soprafino Restaurant in Doha Qatar. Chef Capra lends his name to Massimo’s Italian at Fallsview Casino in Niagara Falls and, in 2016, he opened Capra’s Kitchen, a casual Italian eatery in Mississauga, Ont.
Chef Capra is the author of One Pot Italian and 3 Chefs: The Kitchen Men, which received the gold award from the Canadian Culinary Book Awards in 2011. He is the food editor for Canadian Home Trends Magazine and a long-time television personality, having hosted his own show Gourmet Escapes on TGTV Inc. He has also acted as a judge on Food Network Canada’s top-rated series Chopped Canada, as well as on Wall of Chefs.
Related: 15 Controversial Cooking Techniques Seen on Wall of Chefs — and Some That Even Worked!
Lynn Crawford is an acclaimed chef, cookbook author and owner of The Hearth. Chef Crawford is a longstanding Food Network Canada personality most recently seen as a judge on Junior Chef Showdown, Wall of Chefs, and Wall of Bakers.
Chef Crawford has over 30 years of culinary experience and has travelled throughout North America, working alongside world-renowned chefs at top destination restaurants and hotels. Chef Crawford has received international awards as the Executive Chef of the Four Seasons Hotel in Toronto and New York City. She is one of the most high-profile chefs in the country and has been invited to cook, speak, and mentor chefs and food lovers across North America.
Chef Crawford’s philosophy of cooking is that food should be locally grown, harvested, raised, and cooked to perfection with heart. She has surrounded herself with an incredible team that helps her provide guests with the most fun, memorable, and delicious experience possible.
Related: From Storing Nut Butters to Removing Egg Shells, These Are the Best Baking Hacks
Christine Cushing is an esteemed chef, cookbook author, award-winning television host and trailblazer in the Canadian culinary industry. She has been teaching Canada how to cook for over 20 years through numerous series on Food Network Canada most recently seen as a judge on Wall of Bakers and Wall of Chefs.
Born in Athens, Greece, Chef Cushing completed the Food and Beverage Management Program at George Brown College, and went on to graduate at the top of her class at the Paris-based École de Cuisine La Varenne. She has worked in renowned kitchens, such as Toronto’s Four Seasons Hotel, King Ranch Health Spa, and Scaramouche Restaurant.
Cushing’s personal vision and knowledge of food is vibrant and intensely flavoured. She believes in elegant meals that are simple to prepare. She loves to explore the culinary possibilities of an unusual ingredient or an exotic cuisine and knows how to delicately balance between flavour and technique.
Related: Christine Cushing’s Sponge Toffee
Steve Hodge is a talented chocolatier and owner of Temper Chocolate & Pastry in Vancouver, judge on Food Network Canada’s Great Chocolate Showdown and Wall of Bakers, and host of Project Bakeover.
Chef Hodge had his start in the kitchen when he attended the California School of Culinary Arts which led to his apprenticeship with Wolfgang Puck Catering and Porto’s Bakery. From there, he has held positions as the executive pastry chef for the Glowbal Group, trained with Dominic Jerry at Sugar Art, pastry chef at Le Caprice in London, England, followed by The Wolseley and finally the three Michelin Star Restaurant, Royal Hospital Road with Gordon Ramsay.
After working overseas, he returned home to Vancouver where he worked alongside renowned Pastry Chef Thomas Haas before opening his own shop, Temper Chocolate & Pastry in 2013. This was the realization of a career goal of owning his own business and utilizing his classic French training to make his own creations. The challenge of finding new flavours and creating new confections remains one of Steve’s favourite parts about being a pastry chef. That said, his favourite item to make is still a classic croissant!
Temper Chocolate & Pastry has been recognized by Food Network, Vancouver Magazine, and Chatelaine for excellence in pastry and chocolate making.
Related: 5 Unconventional Chocolate Pairings That Steve Hodge Loves
Dale MacKay was born in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan and, like most great chefs, he knew at an early age that he was destined for the kitchen. Working with Chef Gordon Ramsay and Daniel Boulud for a decade before winning the first season of Food Network Canada’s Top Chef Canada. Chef MacKay, is co-owner of five award-winning restaurants in Saskatchewan including Ayden Kitchen and Bar, Little Grouse on the Prairie, Sticks and Stones, Avenue Restaurant and Dojo Ramen.
Most recently seen as a judge on Wall of Chefs, Fire Masters and a guest judge on Top Chef Canada, Season 10. Come March 9, Dale will be competing on Top Chef World All-Stars, a culinary battle between 16 finalists or winners from past international editions of Top Chef.
Related: 10 Years of Top Chef Canada – Where are the Winners Now
Mark McEwan is one of Canada’s most celebrated chefs, cookbook author, owner of The McEwan Group and a longstanding Food Network Canada personality, most recently seen as a judge on Top Chef Canada and Wall of Chefs. He began his illustrious career as the youngest ever executive chef at Toronto’s upscale Sutton Place Hotel. From there, he opened the groundbreaking North 44, which set a new standard of excellence in Toronto’s culinary landscape. Chef McEwan continued to push dining innovation with the launch of Bymark, winner of the enRoute Award for Canada’s Best New Restaurants and a pioneer in the Toronto Financial District food scene. Never one to rest on his laurels, Chef McEwan then opened the chic ONE Restaurant, which is considered by locals and discerning travellers alike as the heart of Yorkville.
Chef McEwan’s love of Italian cuisine is evident through his two Fabbrica restaurant locations (Fabbrica TD and Fabbrica Thornbury), serving authentic rustic dishes made with the finest ingredients. Always pushing boundaries with cooking techniques and styles, Chef McEwan created a wide-ranging menu for the elegant Diwan Restaurant at the Aga Khan Museum which showcases his innovative approaches to Middle Eastern, North African, and South Asian cuisine.
Chef McEwan continues to elevate Canadian cuisine on the global stage through his best-selling cookbooks Great Food at Home and Rustic Italian. With a commitment to quality, Chef McEwan is looking toward the future and is continuing to grow McEwan Catering with the launch of www.mcewancatering.com where clients can experience his cuisine through the click of a button.
Related: Mark McEwan’s Ricotta Gnocchi
Chef Roger Mooking is a Trinidadian-born, Canadian-raised, multi-faceted talent, celebrated chef, restaurateur of Twist by Roger Mooking, television host, author, and award-winning recording artist. Longstanding television personality most recently seen as a judge on Food Network Canada’s Wall of Chefs and host of Man Fire Food on Cooking Channel.
Related: Roger Mooking’s Mac and Triple Cheese Topped with Grilled Chicken is the Comfort Food You Need
Andrea Nicholson is a judge on Food Network Canada’s Fire Masters and Top Chef Canada alumni, who has been working in the hospitality industry since the age of 13 and proving variety really is the spice of life.
As a Red Seal-certified chef, she received her culinary training at George Brown College in Toronto. Andrea’s professional experience includes positions in food media, respected Toronto restaurants, world-renowned luxury liner Regent Seven Seas, culinary and corporate institutes, as well as travelling the globe working with internationally acclaimed chefs. Andrea also trained in New York City under Roberto Caporuscio and holds a diploma from the A.P.N. of Naples, Italy, distinguishing her as a certified Pizzaiuoli.
Now the proud owner and executive chef of her own restaurant, Butchie’s, which was featured in an episode of Food Network Canada’s Big Food Bucket List, Andrea’s passion for food is evident in her masterful creations, which celebrate the purity of local and seasonal ingredients. Andrea also owns the Killer Condiments product line, Banana’s gourmet ice cream sandwich shop and Dish Play, a 10,000 square foot culinary event space in Durham Region, outside Toronto. Andrea competed in the first season of Top Chef Canada and returned for the All-Stars season in 2016.
Related: Pairing Wine With Meat: The Cheat Sheet You Need for At-Home Grilling
Afrim Pristine is Canada’s premier cheese expert and owner of the Cheese Boutique, with over 25 years of experience in the art of cheese making. From studying with some of the world’s greatest cheesemakers like Luigi Guffanti, Stefano Sarti, Carl Schilt, Jean-Paul Morin as well as hands on training from his father and world’s most renowned dairy farms, Afrim’s passion and commitment stems from his father and family business of 50 years, Cheese Boutique. Afrim is also a cookbook author and host of Food Network Canada’s Cheese: A Love Story.
As the world’s youngest Maître Fromager, Afrim is the only Canadian to receive this title, awarded to those who demonstrate exceptional cheese knowledge and are recognized within their community.
Afrim has appeared on shows such as The Marilyn Denis Show, City TV’s Breakfast Television, CTV’s Your Morning, and expert consulting for Top Chef Canada, Chopped Canada and more. He was honoured as one of the Top 50 Most Influential People in Canadian Food by the Globe and Mail, July 2016, and named Top 10 Most Influential People in the Food Industry by LCBO Food & Drink Magazine.
Related: How to Build a Better Cheese Board: Ask a Cheese Master
A Toronto-based chef, cookbook author, and restaurateur; Nuit Regular has transformed the Thai food scene in Toronto through the distinct flavours of Northern Thai cuisines and hospitality. Chef Regular is the executive chef and co-owner of celebrated Toronto restaurants PAI, Kiin, By Chef Nuit, Sukhothai and executive chef of Selva Toronto.
The first Thai SELECT Ambassador for Canada, Chef Regular has been recognized by the government of Thailand for the authenticity of her Thai cooking and was awarded the prestigious Thai SELECT Signature designation for her restaurants. She is a judge on Food Network Canada’s Wall of Chefs and has been a guest judge on Top Chef Canada. She is the author of Kiin: Recipes and Stories from Northern Thailand, which was named a finalist for the IACP Cookbook Awards and the Taste Canada Awards.
Related: Chef Nuit Regular Brings a Warm Heart and a Keen Eye to Wall of Chefs
Chef Tre Sanderson is the Season 10 champion of Food Network Canada’s Top Chef Canada, becoming the series’ first Black winner. With over a decade of culinary experience working in some of Toronto’s hottest kitchens, Chef Sanderson showed his culinary skills throughout the competition, all while staying true to his roots. Being a first-generation Canadian with Caribbean roots, Chef Sanderson draws inspiration from his Jamaican heritage, while also implementing different cooking styles, cultures, and techniques into each of his dishes. Since winning Top Chef Canada, Tre has been in-demand and focused on creating restaurant pop-ups, working towards his goal of opening his own restaurant and building a culinary empire.
Related: Top Chef Canada Winner: An Interview With the Season 10 Winner
Noah Cappe, our esteemed host for GRAZE Toronto, will lead the festivities as he keeps audiences entertained with his signature humour and charm.
Host, actor and voice artist, he’s the ravenous host on Food Network Canada’s Carnival Eats, and appears as host with the most on Food Network Canada’s , which features an unprecedented roster of numerous Canadian culinary icons; and most recently as host of . He also dug up the nation’s most coveted recipes from St. John’s and Tofino with Lynn Crawford on Food Network Canada’s . He’s an animal lover, a Curse of Oak Island believer, a big movie buff, and is even funnier in real life.