VANCOUVER, BC (October 15, 2018) — For the second year in a row, a key member of the Boulevard Kitchen & Oyster Bar back-of-house team won the Hawksworth Young Chef Scholarship finals in Toronto as Junior Sous Chef Daniel Kim reigned supreme at the annual culinary competition this past weekend.

In winning the prestigious title, 24-year-old Kim follows in the footsteps of 2017 winner and fellow Boulevard Chef de Partie Connor Sperling, who was part of the Boulevard team that travelled to this year’s event to assist Kim on his culinary quest for glory. Kim claimed his spot at the 2018 finals after winning one of four regional heats that were held in Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto and Montréal earlier this year.

The national competition involved a black-box challenge during which the eight finalists had three hours to incorporate such mystery ingredients as Fraser Valley Specialty Poultry duck, guanciale sorrentino, butternut squash, local honey, Canadian eggs and Cacao Barry Origin Saint-Domingue 70% Dark Chocolate into a main dish and dessert course. An all-star culinary panel of 13 top chefs and critics including David Hawksworth, Norman Laprise, Lee Cooper, Jacob Richler and Lian Yeung judged the final dishes.

Kim, who edged out runner-up Jordan Wilkinson (Hexagon, Prince Albert, SK) and third-place finisher Michael Roszell (The Pear Tree, Burnaby) for top spot, is the fifth BC-based chef in six years to win the competition, following Paul Moran in 2013, Michael Christiansen in ’14, Alex Hon in ’16 and Sperling last year. 

“This is an amazing honour, and no easy feat when you consider the talented group of chefs that were part of the finals,” said Kim. “I credit a lot of this to the advice and training of mentors like (Executive Chef – Signature Restaurants, Sutton Place Hotels) Alex Chen and (Boulevard Executive Chef) Roger Ma, who taught me the importance of staying calm when it comes to high-pressure culinary competitions.”

The Hawksworth Young Chef Scholarship Foundation is a culinary arts non-profit created to recognize and inspire young Canadian chefs, while promoting professionalism and culinary excellence within the hospitality industry. Through its national annual competition, the program provides a platform for talented young chefs to get a head start with an unparalleled opportunity to work in the country’s leading restaurants. The winner of the competition receives $10,000 and a stage at a selected top international restaurant.

“We can’t express enough how proud we are of Daniel for showing such discipline and rising to the challenge on a national stage like this,” said Chen, who was named Chef of the Year at the 2018 Vancouver Magazine Restaurant Awards. “It just speaks to the maturity, professionalism and skills that both Daniel and Connor possess and why they are such a key part of our team at Boulevard.”


TORONTO (October 15, 2018)– The 9th Annual Smoke’s Poutinerie World Poutine Eating Championship wrapped on Saturday, October 13 at Yonge-Dundas Square with an unprecedented final tally of $110,723.17 raised to benefit Friends of We Care. Twenty-seven Canadian CEO’s took part in the CEO Charity Eat-Off contributing an incredible $105,000. The number continued to climb throughout the day as funds from donations on-site were added to the largest single donation that the event has generated since its inception in 2010.

Ryan Smolkin, Smoke's Poutinerie CEO (Right) presents donation cheque to
Friends of We Care Executive Director, Tiana Rodrigue (Left)

The CEO Charity Eat-Off has now raised over $200,000 in charitable donations for national charity partner, Friends of We Care. In addition to CEO’s bringing their own form of entertainment to raise donations, additional funds were raised on-site at the two competing Smoke’s Poutinerie food trucks, the Friends of We Care S’mores Station and donation boxes located throughout the square. The title of the 2-minute charity competition was claimed by Steve Marshall, President of Magnum Food Brokers Inc.

“#WPEC2018 was epic in more ways than one!” says Ryan Smolkin, CEO (Chief Entertainment Officer) of Smoke’s Poutinerie and creative genius behind WPEC. “Not only were we totally stoked to host an amazing roster of amateurs, CEO’s, and the best professional eaters in the world, this year marked the greatest year in WPEC history benefiting our amazing charity partner Friends of We Care. Our mission has always been to entertain our fans, but WPEC is much more than just free poutine and competitive eating. The 9th Annual WPEC showed what Plaid Nation can really do to help others!

The LARGEST Poutine Eating Competition and 2nd largest Professional Eating Competition in the world, sanctioned by Major League Eating (MLE), also featured two more gravy-fueled eating competitions including the Amateur Eat-Off, and the main event Professional Eat-Off.

This year, fans witnessed an unmatched lineup of eleven of the best professional eaters in the world who took to the main stage with the goal of capturing the title of World Poutine Eating Champion! After a grueling 10-minute competition, the world #1 ranked professional eater Joey ‘Jaws’ Chestnut of San Jose, California re-claimed the championship with an impressive 17.5 lbs. of poutine consumed. Chestnut’s victory came as he narrowly beat the 2nd Place competitor Darron Breeden (#5 ranked eater) of Orange, Virginia who ate 16 lbs. 3rd Place was awarded to the top-ranked female professional eater in the world (#7 ranked eater overall), Miki Sudo of Las Vegas, Nevada as she finished with 15 lbs.

The Amateur Eat-Off saw aspiring eaters from the Official Regional Qualifier Competitions square off with Joel Hansen from Waterloo, Ontario claiming 1st Place consuming 8.5 lbs. of poutine in 5 minutes. Kelowna, British Columbia’s Dan Audy finished in 2nd Place having eaten 4 lbs., and Stephen Blohm of Oshawa, Ontario coming in 3rd Place with 2.5 lbs.

Smoke’s Poutinerie brought their ROCK ‘N’ ROLL Stage Show to Yonge & Dundas Square as KISS cover band Destroyer ROCKED with their legendary live show! Fans received FREE poutine all day long along with free samples of Tennent’s Lager and Magners Irish Cider, Monster Energy’s Get Gronked Nerf Football Activation & sampling, mini gaming tournaments from Activision with the release of the next installment in the Call of Duty franchise – Call of Duty: Black Ops 4, Smoke’s Cabin with Creative Club and much more!


1. Joey Chestnut 17.5 lbs

2. Darron Breeden 16 lbs

3. Miki Sudo 15 lbs

4. Matt Stonie 12.5 lbs

5. George Chiger 11.5 lbs

6. Badlands Booker 10 lbs

7. Derek Jacobs 9.5 lbs

8. Darrien Thomas 8 lbs

9. Buffalo Jim 7.5 lbs

10. Jesse Kankula and Wild Bill Myers


TORONTO, Oct. 15, 2018 – Restaurants Canada invites foodservice and hospitality professionals to shop, taste, learn, connect and grow their businesses at the industry’s must-attend event of the year from February 24-26, 2019 at Toronto’s Exhibition Place.

“This year’s RC Show is leading the conversation around the true meaning of sustainability for the foodservice and hospitality industry,” said Shanna Munro, Restaurants Canada President and CEO. “The key to sustainability is ability — the ability to harness the power of innovative products, pioneering people and transformative ideas to keep improving our bottom line in harmony with the planet. That’s what we’re looking forward to getting businesses excited about at this year’s show.”

Now in its 74th year, the RC Show has become a world-class event that foodservice and hospitality professionals can’t afford to miss. Attendees will have the chance to learn about the latest innovative products, gain industry insights and expand their network, all while enjoying an unparalleled experience.

What to expect at #RCShow19:

  • A dynamic tradeshow floor. Explore eight pavilions and five stages featuring industry-leading products and services across all categories, including: breakthrough technology, equipment, décor, food and beverage — all curated to intrigue and delight the senses.
  • Three days of influential speakers. Experience a line-up of more than 150 presentations, panel discussions, workshops, culinary demos and masterclasses that will inspire, deliver insights from thought leaders and guide the industry to greater success.
  • A premium venue. Enjoy first-class guest rooms and hospitality suites at the newly opened Hotel X, offering food and drink experiences paired with extraordinary views, located steps away from the Enercare Centre.

What attendees will gain from #RCShow19:

  • Market insights and data. Get the inside scoop on top industry trends, including the emergence of plant-based menus, aquaculture, sustainable seafood and the risks and opportunities around cannabis within the culinary world.
  • Exclusive deals. Take advantage of exciting offers and incentives from top companies with the Meet the Buyer/Supplier Appointment-Scheduling Tool.
  • Menu solutions. Acquire new food and beverage inspirations from Canada’s top culinary talent, baristas and bartenders, and watch as they go head-to-head in this year’s Garland Culinary, Beyond the Rail Cocktail, Latte Art and Good Spirits Competitions.
  • Thought leadership sessions. Hear from industry experts at the RC Leadership Conference discussing People, Profits and the Planet. Meet industry game changers and the ones to watch for on the Speaker Stage. Learn about ideas and trends that are transforming the world of hospitality at the Breakfast with Champions event and congratulate the winner of the RC Leadership Award.
  • Revenue-driving solutions. Get tips on how to save money by saving energy, how going local can improve your bottom line, and take in Eco Pavilion workshops on how to reduce waste from single-use plastics and other sources, while learning about incentives and rebates.
  • Advice on starting a business. Learn how to start your own restaurant, or manufacture or develop a new product at the Mentor Series sessions, and get a sneak peek at new concepts, sustainable products and future dining operations by checking out the RC Restaurant Experience simulation.
  • Tools to overcome industry challenges. Get an understanding of best practices and discover new, innovative approaches that have helped businesses successfully navigate issues such as staffing, mental health, supply chains and product distribution.
  • Networking opportunities. Don’t miss the chance to connect with colleagues and peers while enjoying an impressive celebration of food and drink at RC Hospitality Week events.

How to attend #RCShow19:

Visit to see the full RC Show line-up and register early to save 50% off the on-site price. All those who register by Dec. 31 will be entered for a chance to WIN A VIP EXPERIENCE PACKAGE including:

  • Air Canada flights for two (for out-of-town guests)
  • A two-night stay at Hotel X
  • VIP access to the RC Show and RC Hospitality Week events

Registration is now open!

  • RC Members can register for free!
  • Non-Member registration prices:
  • $40 Early bird price (register before Jan. 1, 2019)
  • $60 Regular pre-event price (register before Feb. 24, 2019)
  • $80 On-site price (on/after Feb. 24, 2019)

Registration includes three-day access to the RC Show and a ticket to the Opening Night Reception on Sunday, Feb. 24.

Join the conversation on social media: #RCShow19 #RCShowCanada #SustainABLE

To sign up for media accreditation, arrange an interview, or to RSVP for media tours and the pre-show media event, please reach out to the contacts below:

Lisa Raffaele │647-837-1265│This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Sabrine Elejel | 647-837-1268 | This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Milan, 11 October 2018. Catering in all of its many forms. From ovens to stoves, from chopping to the more recent food processing methods, from laundry to the most innovative food preservation systems. The 41st edition of HostMilano (organised by Fiera Milano and set to take place from 18 to 22 October 2019) promises to exceed the numbers achieved at the previous event, with the Foodservice Equipment – Bread, Pizza, Pasta macro-area being the best represented in terms of product offering and number of sector companies present (48% of the 1,189 companies registered to date). Further emphasis should also be placed on the international dimension of the exhibitors attending the event: at present, 44 different countries will be represented (compared to the same period in 2016), with two new entries (Albania and Latvia) joining larger countries such as Germany, Spain, France and the United States.

Scouting activities continue in parallel, thanks in part to the close collaboration with the Italian Trade Agency, resulting in over 1,500 buyers from 80 different countries in attendance at Host 2019, with a turnover rate of almost 80%, and a targeted focus on a number of markets such as the USA, Canada and the Middle East.

Last but not least, there will also be a focus on two new international partnerships, including the agreement reached withRestaurants Canada, the largest eat-out organisation in North America with over 30 thousand members covering the entire supply chain, from bars, restaurants and caterers, to suppliers and institutions. A deal has also been struck with CEDA (Catering Equipment Distributors Association), which comprises close on 100 distributors of products and services for the catering industry in the United Kingdom.

Professional Catering: Italy as the third largest global exporter

The fact that the Professional Catering – Bread, Pizza, Pasta macro-area is enjoying a period of particular prosperity is also demonstrated by data provided by the Host Observatory and derived from the Ulisse system. In fact, in 2017 global trade in Professional Catering Machinery, Equipment and Accessories was worth 52.8 billion euros, with an average annual growth rate of 6.1% in the 2009-2017 period.

The latest ANIMA/Assifoodtec data also bodes well. For 2018, estimations point to increases in production (+2.7%), exports (+2.9%) and investments (+8.2%)

In terms of exports, in particular, currently worth over 3.54 billion euros, Italy is the third largest exporter subsequent only to China and Germany, yet for sales in the Premium-Price cooking segment (stoves and non-electric ovens), the Italian peninsular is giving Germany a real run for its money.

Professional Catering alongside Bread, Pizza and Pasta at HostMilano

If the global golden era for the catering industry has seen the rise of an all-encompassing, comprehensive offering (from full-service restaurants to ‘quick’ alternatives, from bars to takeaways, from street food to vending machines), set only to expand further, then in recent years, the entire Italian food-cooking industry has cemented its status on an international scale according to the Host Observatory.

Outside of Italy, people are no longer content solely with Italian food, but they want to experience a touch of the world-renowned Italian lifestyle as well: from the use of specific ingredients, primarily flours, to the use of equipment and the skills of professionals. The ‘experiential trend’ is however only one of the many fashions being represented at HostMilano, the event that has, not for nothing, seen the Professional Catering and bread, pizza and pasta industries merge, thereby once again highlighting the increasingly close relationship between catering in its many forms and the baking sector.

A trend that, over the years, has become prevalent worldwide, with the arrival of mixed-concept establishments that jointly offer bakery, confectionery, coffeehouse and gourmet food products. All with the aim of immediately connecting with and meeting the needs of everyday customers who are more informed about and attentive to what they eat, as well as being used to having everything in one place there and then.

The demand for innovative and health-conscious products with a short production chain is growing

The dominance of Made in Italy production remains second to none both in Italy and abroad, even in the baking sector. This hasn’t just been confirmed by economic data, but also by the changing behaviour of consumers towards Bread-Pizza-Pasta products.

For instance, bread, according to the latest data, is still being purchased ‘fresh’ on a daily basis and from ‘artisan’ bakeries by 90% of Italians. Why you may ask? The third-millennium consumer is more conscious of their health and eating habits and is curious and always on the lookout for something new: from organic bread to bread made with selected raw materials, from reduced-sodium alternatives to those made with relatively unprocessed flours and 0-km options.

Something somewhat similar can be said for the pasta segment: if 99% of Italians enjoy eating pasta and 69% eat it regularly, then the data provided by the agri-food CNA (Italian Confederation of Crafts and SMEs) points to the progressive assertion of new types of products, from organic and gluten-free alternatives to premium-quality pastas.

That said, pizza continues to assert its authority and has overtaken bread in terms of eating habits in Italy. A genuine Made in Italy global food icon, produced abroad using Italian flours, in all of its gourmet variations or without added enzymes and gluten, it is having a significant impact on the oven industry, where the demand for advanced technologies is becoming increasingly intensified.

The same goes for the bread-making industry, where the ever-extensive offer has seen demand shift towards a different kind of oven, including medium-sized, traditional and electric rotary and shelf models, in addition to modular alternatives. Without mentioning the sky-rocketing demand for energy savings, to be achieved with alternatively powered ovens, such as those that use pellets.

All the latest sector trends and novelties on display at HostMilano 2019

Hundreds of events, from meetings and opportunities to exchange opinions, to contests and demonstrations. The cooking and Professional Catering industries will take centre stage at Host, where one-off business opportunities will also be joined by futuristic trends, with the participation of top chefs and key sector influencers.

For example,theEuropean Pizza Championship, organised by Pizza e Pasta Italiana and the Italian School of Pizza-Makers is one event not to be missed; the contest, scheduled to take place on the 21 and 22 October 2019, brings together pizza-makers from all over Europe for two days dedicated to Italy’s most globally appreciated, widely consumed and diverse dish, which has recently become experimental territory for some of the world's most renowned chefs.

The series of meetings and seminars organised by the FCSI (Foodservice Consultants Society International), the association that brings together consultants for the designing, management and organisation of services in the hotel sector and professional catering industry, will be extensive as always. The ‘hot’ topics up for discussion will include the use of social media, business opportunities in new markets, the organisation of large events, sustainability and the green economy.

Host 2019 will also be home to a full schedule of show-cooking events featuring high-profile chefs, VIP guests, tastings and debates, all organised by the APCI (Professional Association of Italian Cooks), as ever with the third-millennium chef and cooking profession as the centre of attention. The aim is to delve deeper into all the main topics of interest that involve the entire industry alongside all the professionals in attendance.

Promoted by Host-Fiera Milano in collaboration with and sponsored by the ADI (Italian Association for Industrial Design), SMART Label, the award dedicated to innovation in the professional hospitality industry, will also be returning to the event. An event intended to promote companies - including Professional Caterers - that have successfully put the combination of technology, hospitality and future trends in the limelight. In total, the numbers point to 497 candidacies collected over the past three editions, 156 companies awarded the SMART Label and more than 20 special recognitions with the Innovation SMART Label, awarded to the same number of products marking significant milestones in the sectors represented.

The Catering industry companies already registered to take part in the 2019 edition of HostMilano include:  Alto-Shaam, Fagor, Hobart, Hoshizaki, Meiko, Middleby, True Food International, Vollrath (overseas); Ali Group, Angelo Po, Oscartielle, Sirman, Unox (in Italy). Instead, in the Bread, Pizza, Pasta segment, the following companies have already confirmed their participation:  Atollspeed, Belshaw, Bridor, PizzaMaster, Wiesheu; Bake Off, Imperia & Monferrina, Italforni Pesaro, Italmill, Mondial Forni, Morello Forni, Tagliavini.

All updates are available at:, @HostMilano, #Host2019.


Vancouver, B.C. (October 9, 2018): On Tuesday, October 9, the team behind East Vancouver's Osteria Savio Volpe & Pepino's Spaghetti House open the doors of their third concept, La Tana - Italian for a fox's den.

"What people do with food is an act that reveals how they construe the world" - Marcella Hazan, renowned Italian-born cookbook author.

An old world-inspired establishment, Caffè La Tana is styled after the Italian alimentari: a small, neighbourhood gathering place serving pastries and simple meals; brewing strong, Italian-style espresso; and stocking locally sourced organic produce; fresh house made pasta; and the finest imported Italian meats, cheeses and dry goods.

"With La Tana, we're welcoming the neighbourhood further into our kitchens," says Co-owner Paul Grunberg. "We want to share not only the bounty of our pantry, but also the long-term relationships we have developed with suppliers and farmers." 

In addition to groceries and coffee, central to the La Tana kitchen is the exposed Pasta Fresca table where fresh pastas -- hand-cut everyday egg noodles, special seasonal stuffed pasta, and lesser known, harder-to-find shapes like trofie, tajarin, and orecchiette -- will be made on the premises daily and will be available uncooked for purchase as 

well as prepared in-house for lunch. In addition to plates of pasta, small meals such as 'eggs in purgatory', panettone french toast, and bombolini with vanilla cream; veal tonnato, prosciutto & mortadella stuffed gnocco fritto and a porchetta sandwich, will be available throughout the day.

"Eating in Italy is essentially a family art, practiced for and by the family. The finest accomplishments of the home cook are not reserved like the good silver and china for special occasions or for impressing guests, but are offered daily for the pleasure and happiness of the family group" - Marcella Hazan.

With family and home cooking in mind, owners Paul Grunberg, Mark Perrier, and Craig Stanghetta intend to bring the ease and service of Pepino's and Savio Volpe into the homes of its customers. One of Vancouver's premier restaurateurs, Grunberg has opened and run some of the city's top dining experiences, including Chambar, Market by Jean-Georges at the Shangri-La Hotel, and Bao Bei Chinese Brasserie. Perrier is known for his ability to elevate rustic, elemental ingredients and his voracious appetite for knowledge; with La Tana, Perrier extends his fervor for great food to a daytime audience. Combined with Stanghetta's signature penchant for creating spaces that invite and inspire, the trio set their sights on creating an everyday experience that would invite visitors to enjoy a moment of carefree ease, and to give guests a chance to bring that feeling into their own homes.

Bedecked with deep green marble, antique shelving and custom woodwork, classic tiled flooring, and tailor-made, hand-drawn wallpaper, the La Tana space, designed by Stanghetta's studio, Ste. Marie, evokes Italy's elegance as influenced by Stanghetta's trademark eye for the unexpected. 

"We endeavoured for La Tana to be two things: elegant and effortless," says Stanghetta, "a physical manifestation of the Italians' age-old gift of making art out of life. Selfishly, I wanted a place that would bring me back to my favourite memories of travelling in Italy with my family and happening upon a tiny hole in the wall that turns out to be warm, welcoming and special. If we can bring a bit of that to our corner of east Van we'll be happy."

La Tana will be run by General Manager Nathaly Nairn, a hospitality veteran and entrepreneur with ten years experience in the industry. The coffee program will be overseen by Shahnee Zaver (formerly of Dalina, 49th Parallel) who, in concert with local coffee producers, has developed a signature "approachable blend emphasizing richness, with caramel and chocolate notes," explains Zaver.

Looking ahead, La Tana will host evening events centred around Italian wines and cicchetti. Starting October 9, La Tana will be open from 7:00am to 7:00pm and is located at 635 Commercial Drive. For more information, visit


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