Meeting MPI Toronto - January/February 2015 - (Page 18)

THE By Annette Frymer, Restaurant Events RISE OF RESTAURANT-INSPIRED EVENTS Y ou have been tasked with organizing a singularly fantastic event. One that stimulates the senses, delights the taste buds, gives your attendees a sense of place and time - in short, a memorable event that will be savoured long after its conclusion. Lucky for you, you live in Toronto, home of one of the world's most diverse, innovative and fastest growing culinary scenes. Giles Coren, British food critic and host of British local beers are rapidly becoming one of the hottest trends, and venues abound throughout the city in which to experience these local offerings. With the rise of the local food movement, restaurants specializing in farm-to-table meal preparation have flourished in the GTA. Farm-to-table chefs value every aspect of food production, from harvesting and storage to processing and sales. They use organic, sustainably produced ingredients reality show "Million Dollar Critic," said of his recent visit that in a "joyful, food-filled" week in Toronto he found a "vibrant, pulsating restaurant city." Corporate restaurant dining is a common enough event. So how does the creative event planner collaborate with the great restaurateurs of this city to lift an everyday experience to the extraordinary? sourced directly from local farmers. Creating seasonally-themed events that celebrate the bounty in our own backyards offers your guests a chance to experience this firsthand. "LEAVE" TORONTO! We are experiencing an explosion of world flavours in Toronto right now. The cuisine you choose can set the mood and give you a palette upon which to build your masterpiece. Take your guests to Greece, Mexico, South America, the South of France, parts of Asia or Russia by using venues showcasing refined regional cuisine. Experience the tastes, engage the chef in a tutored tasting exploration of the food, or tailor the menu to create a meal using familiar ingredients in unfamiliar ways. See how old world standards are being co-opted by a new generation of chefs to create foods that are traditional and new all at the same time. You can: * Experience a tutored tasting in an intimate setting evoking a small French countryside bistro. Your hosts will teach you about the food and wine of the Loire region while you enjoy a modern take on its specialties. * Enjoy an evening of tapas and fine wines hosted by one of T.O's finest Chefs, who earned his tapas making stripes at a Michelin rated Spanish luxury hotel. * Sample complex and unusual brands of tequila brought to you by one of Toronto's only tequila sommeliers, while savoring haute Mexican cuisine, lovingly prepared from recipes passed down through generations. STAY IN TORONTO! Craft breweries can define our sense of place. The Ontario Craft Brewers Association boasts a membership of 35+ brewers all dedicated to the traditions of making premium, custom crafted brews. Wine-and-cheese parties may have been popular in the past, but cheese plates matched with fresh 18 * ME ETING | JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2015 TAKE A CELEBRITY CHEF TO DINNER In 2010, Time magazine published a fascinating article entitled, "The Cult of the Celebrity Chef Goes Global." If anything this cult has only grown since then, making some chefs the equivalent of modern day rock stars. Along with many other major cities, Toronto enjoys its fair share of celebrity chefs. Star gazing aside, there is much to be learned and enjoyed from an evening spent with a celebrity chef, in the intimacy of his or her own restaurant venue. Such chefs have often risen to their celebrity status, not only because of their talents in the kitchen, but also from their acumen for business, public relations and for media. With their camera-ready personalities, you can bet that your guests will enjoy an enlightened interactive event. RESTAURANTS AS GREAT EVENT VENUES Restaurants in Toronto offer a wealth of opportunity for the creation of deeply experiential and satisfying events. Food and beverage offerings can be tailored to reflect any theme, or indeed, the theme can be chosen to highlight the food and beverage offerings. Working with the restaurateur, elements of lighting, décor and design can all be manipulated or changed to give you the mood, the look, the feel and the scents that you are after to produce your vision.  And a restaurant staff, well trained in the art of hospitality, will elevate your experience. We are indeed lucky to live in a city that offers such a rich and plentiful restaurant landscape, giving us endless opportunities to create deliciously memorable events and experiences.  Annette Frymer is the Owner at Restaurant Events Inc. and can be reached at

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Meeting MPI Toronto - January/February 2015

President’s Message
Editor’s Word
Welcome, New Members!
Upcoming Events
Discovering Toronto’s Best Kept Secrets – A Venue Guide
Entertainment Trend Forecast 2015
Inside the Chapter: MPI Toronto’s Hidden Gems
Canada’s Hidden Gems: Ready to Welcome and Delight Groups of All Sizes
Hiding in Plain Sight: The New Niagara
Secrets for Effective Negotiation and Getting What You Want
Chapter Speaks
Attendee Engagement – Try Something New!
The Rise of Restaurant-Inspired Events
Destination Winnipeg
Advertisers’ Index &

Meeting MPI Toronto - January/February 2015