Restaurant Canada Show 2016 – Canada’s Longest Running Trade Show for the Foodservice and Hospitality Industry Brings Together over 12,000 Industry Pros at the Enercare Centre

Restaurants Canada Show (formerly CRFA Show) is an annual trade show for the foodservice and hospitality industries. This year’s three-day event took place at the Enercare Centre and brought together over 12,000 exhibitors, industry experts, and friendly competitors.

The show was divided into various pavilions including Pizza, Shake & Sling, Coffee and Tea, Tech, Eco, Ontario, Mexico, Gordon Food Service, State of Illinois and Specialty.

Some of the interesting seminars were Pizza University with pizza master Christian Zaghini and Morena Baleani, who taught attendees how to make the perfect pizza; the Latte Art Lab session showing the secrets to making art on lattes and cappuccinos. I’ll Take Manhattans workshop explained the history and origins of aromatic bitters and was presented by Dale DeGroff (King Cocktail). Shuck and Tipple was about pairing oysters and whiskies, presented by Shucker Paddy.

The competitions throughout the show brought together entrants from across Canada and the world. Top Shelf Bartender of the Year awarded $25,000 to the best in the categories of Free Pour Accuracy Challenge, Outside the Mystery Box Cocktail Challenge, Stopwatch Cocktail Challenge, and Style & Flair Cocktail Challenge. Latte Art Challenge had baristas compete to win $2000.00. There were a few awards as well including Frankie Tomato‘s Restaurant Innovation Competition Awards, the Canadian Culinary Salon Awards and the Provincial Sysco Challenge Awards.
Another highlight occurred when Canada’s 100 Best Magazine revealed Canada’s top 100 restaurants.

At the exhibits, there was a lot to experience. We watched a gelato artist create gelato sushi (and later we sampled apple pie vegan gelato). Charlie the Butcher (from TV’s You Gotta Eat Here) explain how to get the best cuts. We walked inside a food truck, saw an acrobatic chef perform tricks on a unicycle, and we even played Pacman, bubble hockey and foosball.

Many of the exhibitors offered their food products for sampling. Some of our favourites included Carole’s Cheesecake Co.’s peanut butter cheesecake, Chudleigh’s apple blossoms, Ace Bakery‘s bread, Stonetown artisan cheeses, Avocados Mexico‘s avocado paired with salmon, Monin‘s coconut cream with sweet potato fries, Lidia‘s pasta marinara, Chef Craig Harding of Campagnolo Restaurant‘s Canadian gouda risotto, Boulart‘s chocolate cranberry bread, and Snickers bread pudding.

There were many breweries, wineries and liquor exhibitors offering samplings as well. Bud Light had a truck with frozen beer. Flair bartending was fun to watch and reminded us of the Tom Cruise film “Cocktail“.

Foodservice equipment was a major component of the show with companies showcasing items like refrigerators and freezers, pizza ovens, coffee machines and even ice flake makers. Restaurant uniforms being hip and trendy, unlike those of the past, were also on display. Glassware, wood blocks, furniture, knives, cookware, cleaning solutions all were featured.

(photos by Sari)

Restaurants Canada Show 2016 was an exciting and informative event, the trade show is the longest-running of its kind in Canada. We learned a lot about the latest trends and products in the food and hospitality industries.

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