Master Chef Mark McEwan Joins Aga Khan Museum

Toronto, November 9, 2015 – The Aga Khan Museum is pleased to welcome The McEwan Group as its new manager of food and beverage services. Effective immediately, Chef Mark McEwan leads the stunning Diwan at Aga Khan Museum, the casual Courtyard Café, and all catering for private events.

Director and CEO Henry Kim notes, “Both as a chef and as an entrepreneur, Mark McEwan has earned international respect. We’re thrilled that his vision will shape food services at the Museum, enriching the experience of all who visit here — whether to see an exhibition or to attend a special event.”

Mark McEwan_Aga Khan Museum

Photographed by Fred Lum/The Globe and Mail

North 44 and Bymark have long established Mark McEwan’s reputation in Canada and abroad as a master chef and culinary innovator. With ONEFabbricaMcEwan at The Shops at Don Mills — and, most recently, McEwan at TD Centre — he broadened his scope, moving from upscale dining to providing gourmet-to-go options for busy urbanites. Yet for McEwan, the Aga Khan Museum is his most exciting challenge to date. He is eager to expand his already extensive repertoire, infusing the cuisine of India, North Africa, and Middle East with his inimitable style.

“I’m up for the challenge,” says Chef Mark McEwan. “I’m never content to rest on past achievements. I’m looking forward to developing a new vocabulary, a distinctive fusion of traditional and contemporary cuisine that really reflects what the Aga Khan Museum is all about.”

At Diwan, McEwan will focus his talents on providing lunch service from Tuesday to Sunday, 11:30 am–2:30 pm. Both walk-up service and reservations (via Open Table) are available for individuals and small groups. A $35 prix fixe lunch menu for larger groups may be booked at 416.646.4677, ext. 7730.

Grilled Octopus_Aga Khan Museum

Photographed by Fred Lum/The Globe and Mail

New Diwan Lunch Menu Highlights (for a full menu, click here.):
• Tempting Starters ($6–16), such as tender Grilled Octopus served with Green Chickpea Salad, Moroccan Olives, Sweet Stewed Peppers, Sujuk, and Aleppo Pepper Aioli;
• Innovative takes on sandwiches and burgers ($16–18), including Chicken Tikka Masala on Naan, served with pickled carrot, mint-cucumber raita, and mango chutney;
• Generous Mains ($19–24), featuring Crisp Manakeesh (a Braised Beef Short Rib with Pickled Shallots, Akkawi Cheese, and Charred Eggplant Spread); and
• A range of specialty coffees and teas — including an aromatic Moroccan Spiced Coffee, Orange Blossom “White Coffee,” and rich Indian Masala Chai.

In the evening, Diwan is open for special themed dinners and private events. Visit Aga Khan Museum for details about pre-show dinners for this season’s Arab Jazz Series. For information about private event catering, please email private.events@agakhanmuseum.org.

For press inquiries please contact:
Jackie Koffman, Holmes PR
jkoffman@holmespr.com
416.628.5608

Tasleem Somji, Aga Khan Museum
press@agakhanmuseum.org
416.858.8735

Melanie Hoefs, The McEwan Group
melanie@brandingandbuzzing.com
416.707.9136

McEwan Thanksgiving Catering by Numbers

With summer slipped away, and a busy start to autumn, it’s almost a shock that Thanksgiving weekend is mere days away! Accepting it is challenge one, but planning for it will be a whole other hurdle. It’s no small feat to perfectly roast turkey, whisk gravy, simmer cranberries, caramelize Brussels sprouts, bake stuffing, roast veggies, toss salad, spin potatoes and bake a flaky pie, all while keeping the house in order and managing the hectic affair.  Phew!

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Well, while you’re on your own with the family drama, McEwan can take a real load off in the kitchen with their ready-to-reheat family dinners with all the fixings. Choose from their Beef Tenderloin, Salmon, Roasted Leg of Lamb, and of course, the Classic Turkey, and forgo the time, stress and mess of shopping, chopping, stuffing, cooking, and cleaning the annual feast. Now that’s something to be thankful for! Not convinced? Check out this handy-dandy McEwan Thanksgiving Catering by Numbers.

Ready to be order # 76? Let us take on the culinary burdens so you can focus on more important things this holiday season such as spending quality time with family and friends. For more information on menus or to place your Thanksgiving order, check out their website, email catering@mcewanfoods.com or call 416 444 6262 x 228.

DELICIOUSLY YOURS,

ABBEY SHARP, RD

OWNER, ABBEY’S KITCHEN

Life of McEwan Catering

On December 11 we hosted an Instagram Chat on Twitter where we brought to life what catering orders from receiving to shipping in a photo editorial.  Watch the process below.

This regular feature showcases the many steps it takes to put together popular dishes at our restaurant properties or behind-the-scenes at McEwan.

Catering: We Deliver

“When someone trusts you to set up their evening it’s very rewarding, especially when they have high standards.”

That’s Eric McEwan talking about his favourite part of the catering business. But truth be told, it’s hard to find someone with higher standards than this 28 year-old. It’s why his father put him in charge of McEwan Catering and why it’s done so well.

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Mixed Appetizer Platter includes Pork Spring Rolls, Grilled Shrimp, Beef Empanadas, Vegetable Dumplings and Chicken Drumettes

 

Step 1 – Placing the Order

You call with an event in mind, but you’re having trouble picking a menu to complement it. First of all, you should know that that you’re definitely not the first. We get asked for recommendations all the time, and we’ll almost always point customers out of their comfort zones; even ones with specific dietary restrictions, many of which we can accommodate including kosher. After 20 years of dinner parties, occasions and conferences, we’ve come to learn that (a) people remember good food and (b) people remember different food.

Step 2 – Preparing an Event

Gourmet catering is about doing what it takes to make the host look and feel their very best. Part of that is the food, but it’s certainly not the only thing. For example, we work with you find the perfect wine to match the menu and the event. We offer on-site servers and chefs, all trained in-house through the North 44 program. We send some of our dishes on wooden boards and bowls for presentation. We even help you with choosing the perfect space.

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Customers recently hosted a small gathering before heading to a TIFF party.  Their catered spread also included Seasonal Harvest Vegetables with Chili & Lemon Garlic Aioli and Mini Prime Rib Sandwiches

 

Step 3 – Packing the Food

“Organization is the key to catering” says McEwan. “It doesn’t matter if it’s for 5 or 500”. For example, because catering orders usually have to travel and aren’t consumed immediately, sauces and dressings have to be approached differently. Many items are created, then de-constructed and packed to be re-assembled on site by a staff member or by the host. Eric prefers the latter – he says customers like feeling part of the creative process. We agree.  For example the Tuna on Homemade Potato Chip with Mango Mignonette & Fresh Micro Greens includes all the components needed to make this appetizer a hit at any party.

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IMG_7350Have an event coming up? Look at our catering menu, call 416.444.6262, ask for extension 228 and we’ll start turning you in to the host with the utmost.