Many of this city's best chefs got their start at George Brown College's School of Hospitality & Culinary Arts. I don't think there's one person in this city that can't attribute a memorable meal or special night out to a George Brown alumni. Rudy Guo, a partner at seafood mecca Pearl Diver owner of four successful restaurants in Shanghai, got his start in the storied building on Adelaide Street East.
The late Brian Cooper, then Dean of the culinary school, was a major influence on Rudy and set him on the path to creating restaurant experiences that truly embody the spirit of hospitality. The “spirit” of hospitality is what defines Pearl Diver today, in the rapidly changing world of the hospitality industry. Rudy has created a unique dinner series as a tribute to his culinary roots and a way to give back to Toronto's young chefs, ensuring the spirit of hospitality and innovation in our local restaurant industry never dies,
"When I first came to George Brown College, Brian Cooper showed me the true meaning of being a great host. It's informed everything I've done since I left school and I'd like to honour his memory."
The Spirit of Hospitality Dinners will be held in the newly minted "Coopers Room", the private dining space at Pear Diver and pair young chefs with an experienced chef for a one-night culinary adventure, with 50% of the proceeds going to to the Spirit of Hospitality scholarship program.
I attended the launch of the dinner series featuring Chef Micheal Blackie, who treated us to a one of a kind, delicious evening. Chef Blackie has been cooking for almost 27 years in some of the worlds' finest kitchens, including Mandarin Oriental in Hong Kong and the Oberoi in Bali. Michael is currently flexing his creative muscles at Nextfood.ca in Ottawa. We were treated to an evening of treats such as tempura battered cheese curds, Tuna sashimi, 36 hour sous vide pork belly, digby scallops, cashew encrusted bone pork ribs and hibiscus, pear and hazelnut cake.
Want to attend the next superstar chef dinner and support a great cause? Stay tuned to Chew Street for details on round two of this unique dinner series.