For Eric Pateman, Edible Canada’s Executive Chef and President, food is about storytelling, which puts him in an ideal position for assembling the lineup of talented food purveyors who will be showcasing their incredible products at the Canadian Food Artisan Pavilion.
The growth of Edible Canada as a marketplace for uniquely Canadian food products seems to parallel the growth of EAT! Vancouver, in that the consumer demand for a more personal interaction with food and a focus on food origins has increased mightily locally. With EAT! Vancouver shifting from a trade expo to a bona fide food festival, bringing in smaller vendors from coast to coast, an experts on Canadian food artisans like Pateman and the Edible Canada team, are a perfect fit.
The Food Artisan Pavilion will offer EAT! Vancouver attendees the chance to meet the makers, and do some sampling. Pateman is excited to get consumers excited about encountering new products and being a part of an ongoing and evolving conversation about what Canadian food is.
“If you ask 100 people today what Canadian food is you’ll get 100 different answers,” says Pateman, citing the typical and expected things like poutine, smoked salmon, and maple syrup as replies.
For Pateman, who, through his role at Edible Canada, has the opportunity to be a part of encouraging the nation’s dialogue about defining what “Canadian food” is and means, a significant part of the definition is that our food exemplifies our great natural resources from land to sea, our excellent meats and cheeses, the opportunities for foraging. But “what makes Canada Canada,” says Pateman, is our broad multiculturalism.
Cooking styles and techniques meld with spices and culinary accents from other nations, executed with Canadian ingredients, is the hallmark of Canadian food. Here in Vancouver we are eating the globe on a regular basis, from Thai to Indian to Chinese foods, all done authentically, but sourced locally.
“That’s the story we can tell coast to coast,” says Pateman.
The foods of small artisan vendors across Canada will be speaking, if you will, to the EAT! Vancouver crowd, and Pateman is particularly excited about being able to turn people on to things like the flavoured maple syrups from Nova Scotia’s Pure, Olive & Ciboulette’s lobster oil, and a uniquely Canadian Negroni bar at the Pavilion.
“Food is a cultural ambassador,” observes Pateman. “Food is that medium everyone understands.”
Friday May 1, 2015 (2-9 p.m.)
Saturday May 2, 2015 (10 a.m. to 9 p.m.)
Sunday May 3, 2015 (10 a.m. to 5 p.m.)
Where: BC Place, 777 Pacific Boulevard, Downtown
Cost: Information on tickets for the festival is available online. There will be nominal tasting fees inside the Canadian Food Artisans Pavilion.
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