Those who frequent the exclusive season ticket holder or members-only, Platinum Club restaurant inside the Scotiabank Arena have yet another exciting feature to look forward to–a new Dining Series, which kicked-off with celebrity chef Mark McEwan. With so much culinary talent in The 6ix, we went after the inside scoop on the collaboration. Luckily, our Editorial Director, Steven Branco had the chance to sit down with the outstanding culinary talent behind it all, both MLSE culinary director, chef Chris Zielinski and chef Mark McEwan, and for an exclusive interview.
Taking a step back, our first question at mind was, and with no disrespect to the incredible chef Mark McEwan, but why him? Little did we know that there was actually a lot more history behind their relationship than we knew.
Inside Scoop behind this Platinum Club Dining Series Kick-off Collaboration
“Whether it was about fine dining, or concession stands’ food, Tanenbaum believes that quality should come before price.”
MLSE is not only making their mark in the areas of fine dining, but with sustainability and community as well. In addition to being the only arena in Canada that is an Ocean Wise partner, they are also a massive donor to Second Harvest. Zielinski also told us that, “last year alone, we were able to collect around 50,000 meals for a donation towards Second Harvest.” It’s inspiring to see that a company of this size is actually doing their par to be sustainable, and minimize their waste–restoring our faith in humanity! 😉
As such, it’s no surprise that they have a bit of a different approach when it comes to serving food from concession stands. Not only do the chefs and staff (which include a whopping 18 chefs and executive chefs and about 400 cooks) test the recipes and sample the items, but the fans are asked to try them out as well! “After all, what better way to see if you’re hitting the right mark other than to ask your actual customers,” asked Zielinski. They actually even got us into the BMO field earlier this week to taste the stadium’s new menu for the season — and it was out-standing! [Pun intended]
When it came to the menu for this dining series kick-off collaboration, which Zielinski tells us was more so put together as somewhat of a “thank you” to their loyal clientele–and we can now see why. It had some delectable flavours to look forward to. Including, a Charred Orange and Burrata Salad is one of the items that was featured. For chef McEwan, knowing the clients–as many of them are the same clientele who come into his restaurants like ONE, and Bymark– he says that these are,
“some types of foods that they gravitate towards, so it made it easy for me to put forth the right dishes.”
A Pan Seared Branzino is also one of the featured menu ideas with fresh herbs, olive oil and capers–which chef confirms is “an all-time favourite for the hockey crowd.” Who can blame them, we were drooling!
Then I went on to ask, in a day like today with everyone on different fad diets, or even allergies or simply just preferences, was there any vegan options available. Zielinski confirmed that while a vegan menu is a part of the Platinum Club restaurant’s regular items, it will not be presented for the one-night event menu — which chef McEwan reiterates that isn’t quite what he has seem the demand for with “this kind of crowd,” as he it put it.
All in all, it was an incredibly rich and delicious menu that was all carefully crafted, by the chef extraordinaire chef Mark McEwan. If you’re thinking what we’re thinking, we can’t wait for the next one. So if you’re not a season ticket holder or pickup premium seats to games just yet, it might be worth exploring because this dining series is DEFINITELY a perk. 😉