Canada’s Great Kitchen Party, Regional Qualifier

Canada’s Great Kitchen Party presents its annual Toronto Regional Qualifier for the Canadian Culinary Championships, hosted by George Stroumboulopoulos and featuring a line-up of acclaimed Canadian chefs, elite athletes and musicians, celebrating pillars of Canadian culture – sport, music and food.

Guests enjoyed  a variety of delicious dishes from 10 competing chefs, mingle and meet a number of elite athletes from amateur, para and pro sports and be entertained by some of Canada’s top musicians. In addition, guests had the opportunity to bid on one-of-a-kind trips within Canada and outside of Canada, to places like Newfoundland, Napa, Morocco, Vietnam, Big White/Kelowna and Mallorca.

This year’s line-up of competing chefs included Ryan Crawford, Backhouse; Jeff Kang, Canis; Keith Pears, Delta Toronto; Gian Nicola Colucci, Four Seasons Toronto; Elia Herrera, Los Colibris; Jesse Vallins, Maple Leaf Tavern/PORT; Amira Becarevic, Mira Mira; Jason Oszoli, Oliver & Bonacini; Rob Toppan, The Fifth Grill & Terrace, and Albert Ponzo, The Royal Hotel – Events & Provisions.

The Judging Panel for the Culinary Championships was led by James Chatto and includes guest judge Geddy Lee, as well as Sasha Chapman, Amy Rosen, Chef John Higgins, Christine Cushing, Lucy Waverman and 2017 Gold Medal Winner Chef Lorenzo Loseto.

Elite athletes attending this year’s event and sharing their stories of triumph included: Jennifer Botterill, Hockey; Billy Bridges, Sledge Hockey; Anastasia Bucis, Speed Skating; Karen Cockburn, Trampoline; Duenas Crispen, Archery; Claire Carver Dias, Synchronized Swimming; Deirdre Dionne, President of Athletes Commission; Derek Drouin, Athletics; Dom Gauthier, Freestyle & CEO B2ten; Rob Gibson,  Rowing; Curt Harnett, Track Cycling; Jayna Hefford, Hockey; Melissa Humana-Paredes, Beach Volleyball; Sekou Kaba, Athletics; Erin Latimer, Para Alpine Skiing; Tyron Lincoln, Invictus Athlete – Wheelchair Rugby/Track and Field; Lanni Marchant, Athletics; Diana Matheson, Soccer; Marnie McBean, Rowing; Tyler McGregor, Sledge Hockey; Heather Moyse, Bobsleigh/Rugby; Mercedes Nicol, Snowboard; Scott Moir, Figure Skating; Mark Oldershaw, Canoe/Kayak; Sarah Pavan, Beach Volleyball; Anna May Pierse, Swimming; Adam Purdy, Para-Swimming; Georgia Simmerling, Cycling and Freestyle; Laura Stacey, Hockey; Brian Stemmie, Alpine Skiing; Mathiew Turgeon, Trampoline; Adam Van Koeverden, Canoe/Kayak; Tara Van Beilen, Swimming; Patrick Vellner, Second Fittest Man in Canada – CrossFit (fifth in the world); Tessa Virtue, Figure Skating, Sarah Wells, Athletics; and Erica Wiebe, Wrestling.

Entertaining the guests during the evening were: Jim Cuddy, Ed Robertson, Dustin Bentall, Kendel Carson, Tom Cochrane, Sam Polley, Devin Cuddy and Annie Lindsay.

Proceeds from this event benefits B2ten (, MusiCounts ( and Canadian Food Centres Canada – CFCC ( Representing the beneficiaries at the event are: Dom Gauther, Co-Founder, B2ten; Kristy Fletcher, Executive Director, MusiCounts, and Nick Saul, Executive Director, CFCC.


Canada’s Great Kitchen Party (CGKP) is a social enterprise dedicated to building a thriving Canada by celebrating excellence in Canadian communities and providing young Canadians the opportunity to be extraordinary through sport, music and food. We proudly contribute to the following three beneficiaries: B2ten, MusiCounts, and Community Food Centres of Canada.

For more information, visit


We would like to thank:

Robin Turnbull, PMP ROBIN TURNBULL EVENT MANAGEMENT Event Expert, Production

Karen Blair, Canada’s Kitchen Party Co-Founder and Media Director and
Vince J. Ciarlo, Ciarlo Communications

for the invitation to this event.