Geneviève Brisson is a master’s student in communication at the University of Ottawa, working on a thesis on gastronomic tourism. An Ottawa native, she has an appetite for discovering everything the National Capital Region has to offer, especially its burgeoning food scene.
Last Tuesday, I spent the evening sampling, sipping, shopping, and sharing stories when I attended “SPOON – Food Your Mama Fed Ya!” at the sleek and hip Sidedoor Contemporary Kitchen and Bar.
The event, put on by Cherry Pie’s Catherine Landry, was billed as Ottawa’s first gastronomic showcase of women in the food and wine industry.
With its promise of being a gathering of women who live, eat, sleep, breathe, sweat and dream food and wine (I could identify!) in celebration of the region’s female culinary elite, I simply couldn’t resist splurging to be present at the event.
My ticket included a glass of sparkling wine, two glasses of wine, appetizers from Sidedoor, and food samples from the many businesses in attendance.
SPOON was more a showcase than a networking event. It featured female farmers, producers, bakers and chefs along with their products – everything from meats, cheeses, vegetables, teas, as well as various savouries and sweets!
I spent the evening talking with the multitude of amazing food purveyors, learning about their companies, their products and how they got where they are today. It was great to discover some new businesses, and to meet the women behind some of the ones I had heard about in the past. It was also a chance to chat with other foodies in the area such as myself.
Oh, and let’s not forget about the sampling of delicious food! Here’s a small snapshot of what was on offer.
On the savoury side, there was a smoked trout spread from The Red Apron, an olive tapenade with goat cheese from the Three Greek Sisters, and my favourite bite of the night: seared albacore tuna with Savoy cabbage slaw, tomatillo and truffle oil on a deep fried wonton from The Whalesbone Catering.
In addition to all those samples, various hors-d’oeuvres emerging from the Sidedoor kitchen were passed around throughout the night: spicy beef tacos, prawns tempura, mushroom spring rolls, mini meatballs in sauce, and various types of donuts. Everything was delicious, but I found the tacos to be the real stand out.
The evening left me thoroughly, and pleasantly, wined and dined. Most importantly, it gave me the opportunity to discover some wonderful businesses and meet the remarkable women behind them.
At the end of the night, unable to leave empty-handed, I picked up a box of four of the most beautifully decorated cupcakes I have ever seen – from Geek Sweets – to bring home with me.
Keep your eyes out for upcoming events such as SPOON – we’ve been told they want to make it a biannual affair!