The single best day preparing for the gala is Tasting Day. That’s when our caterers invite us into their kitchen to plan the menu for the event. And by “plan,” I mean “taste everything they serve the night of the gala.”
Food is an important part of the Waterkeeper Gala. This year, Playing With Fire is working with us to create the perfect menu for our message.
You should be able to see how the food on your plate depends on the health of the waterways around you. You should also experience the quality of food and drink in the Great Lakes watershed.
Food produced here rivals any region on earth, but the idea of “local” gourmet is still new to many of us. Part of the fun of the gala is the chance to taste what a healthy watershed offers.
When you first arrive, you’ll be offered a selection of hors d’oeuvres. One of the first bites you’ll take is a local smoked trout on potato fritter. It’s an exciting bite, because it is loaded with possibility for the future of the Great Lakes. The region’s fisheries were decimated a century ago but producers like Kolapore Springs are around to remind us what we’re missing and inspire us to bring back the fisheries.
If we can protect and restore Great Lakes fish, no one in the watershed would ever go hungry.
Vegetarians rejoice. We offer an even split of meat and veg-friendly options, and the vegetarian food will not be second-class.
Agriculture uses a lot of water - about 70% of all freshwater used, both globally and in Canada, goes to food production. Meat is a big part of that water use, so the UN encourages affluent nations to protect water resources by consuming less meat.
Our meat option includes prosciutto. Guests who don’t eat pork can enjoy an incredible beet-citrus salad. (We’re hiding the photos for now because the plate is too beautiful to reveal in advance.)
With an April gala, our “in season” appetizer options are different than they would be in July or October. Season is important, because in season produce can be grown with a smaller environmental footprint.
We hope you can see (and taste) the April season in the appetizer.
Entrees are always tricky. People’s tastes vary widely. Some love lamb, some hate it. Some love fish, some hate it. Some put bacon on everything, some never touch it.
Chicken is our best bet to please the most people and it is the most sustainable option. Happily, we are lucky to have some excellent producers within two hours of Toronto.
No meal is complete without dessert, of course.
Why won’t you be eating it? As delicious as it was, it takes more effort to eat it than the other option.
Why does that matter? Because as you’re eating dessert, Wade Davis will be taking the stage.
The layered pastry you see in the photo means you’ll be thinking more about cutting your dessert than about Wade’s words. And you won’t want to miss a single moment of the show.