When a chef's culinary philosophy is "A good cook knows how to take the best ingredients and make them shine in a way that can make your heart sing.".....you know that's a restaurant I want to eat in. A couple of weeks ago I had the pleasure of enjoying a Harvest Table dinner in Chef Yasser Qahawish's new Artisanale Restaurant in Guelph. Simple and delicious French country cooking at it's best using fresh, organic and local ingredients.
"Yasser Qahawish spent many years working his way through some of the best kitchens in Toronto and France, including his most memorable “stage” with Mme and M. Bregeon in the Loire. He was one of the first chefs in Toronto to buy everything from organic farmers’ markets when he ran the restaurant at Osgoode Hall. It was the quality of ingredients that brought him to the markets well before it was commonplace. And it is the passion, wisdom and courage of the farmers that he has come to know that has inspired him to build his restaurant, culinary style and kitchen to be able to work with these producers and celebrate their food through his meals."
The highlight of the dinner for me, besides the wonderful food, was dining with local farmer and supplier of some of Artisanale's vegetables, Greg Mountain from Whole Circle Farm. His passion for farming and the produce he grows was inspiring. I wanted to buy a pair of overalls, hop on the back of his tractor and go plow some fields. Ok, not really, but I did think about it!
Passion was definitely the theme of our dinner. We heard the passion for organic local food from everyone starting with Chef Qahawish, manager Sergio to all the servers I spoke with. I can't wait to go back enjoy another wonderful dinner. If you get a chance, you should too. :)
Our Harvest Table Menu
Summer Beets, Fava Fritter, Sheep's Cheese
Whole Roast Lamb with Seasonal Vegetables
Summer Berry Soup with Sabayon Glace & Meringue
Enjoy some more photos from this amazing dinner.