Chef’s Table – July 25-27, 2024

July 25 – 27, 2024

World-class Chefs, innovative cuisine, a spectacular setting, reconnecting with friends, and the beauty of a summer evening by the Rideau Canal…


Chef Connor McQuay (Executive Sous-Chef, NAC)

Connor’s love of being in the kitchen began helping his parents prepare meals at a very young age. At only 14 years old, he got his first culinary job at the Stone Crock in St. Jacobs ON, where he developed a passion for the industry and quickly worked his way up from dishwasher to the hot line cooking pasta. He then joined the opening team for the first Keg Steak House in Waterloo where more than 600 meals were produced nightly. 

In 2006, he formally studied the culinary arts at Fanshawe College, creating the foundation of his career. 

Two years later, he moved to Ottawa and worked as an entry-level cook at the National Arts Centre, under Kurt Waldele, Tim Wasylko, and later Chef Michael Blackie. After 4 years of building experience at the NAC, he was offered the opportunity to help Ion Aimers expand ZaZaZa Pizza. He then gained further experience working in several kitchens in the area, including the Back Lane Café, where he was quickly promoted from the Garde Manger to running their Mediterranean-style kitchen for three years, as Executive Sous Chef at The Shore Club, and as Commissary Chef with the team launching the first 3 Mad Radish restaurants in Ottawa. 

In 2018, he decided to make a change and worked briefly in commercial kitchen sales. The itch to be in the kitchen never left him, however, and through this work, he reconnected with the NAC through Executive Chef, Kenton Leier. In 2019, he returned to work as Sous Chef for the NAC, a position he had dreamed about since he first set foot in their kitchen. 

Chef Kenton Leier (National Arts Centre)

Executive Chef Kenton Leier brings enthusiasm, passion, and creativity to the kitchens at Canada’s National Arts Center.

He is a second-generation chef, born and raised in Saskatoon, in the heart of the prairies. His culinary philosophy relies on the use of sustainable and locally sourced ingredients of the highest quality and letting their inherent qualities stand out in his dishes. 

Chef Leier led teams in Ottawa’s finest hotel kitchens before moving to the NAC in 2017. He has cooked for celebrities, politicians and dignitaries, won numerous medals nationally and internationally and taught young cooks at Ottawa’s Algonquin College. 

He is committed to promoting growth and excellence in his team at the NAC and leads them in their mission to represent the best in Canadian cuisine.

 

Menu

Rosemary and sea salt brioche with whipped brown butter

Serrano ham

compressed cantaloupe with honey – white balsamic

black olive and toasted almond powder

shaved fennel – Thai basil – cold pressed canola

Cabbage wrapped halibut

crab arancini – blistered jalapeño stuffed with Cross Wind Farm feta

sweet corn velouté

1 Elgin honey cake

lemon & blackberry jam – lavender & mascarpone diplomat

hibiscus caramel – Earl Grey tuile

Downloadable Menu

 

Music: Mikhail Laxton and Rebecca Noelle

His new album is simply entitled Mikhail Laxton because it is who he is. The Canadian-based Aussie draws a striking contrast between his first EP and his upcoming album. Not only does the upcoming music fulfill the promise of his debut, but it also firmly establishes him as one of the most vital voices within the Canadian music scene. No matter what genre labels are placed upon him, there can be no disputing that Mikhail Laxton has his own timeless sound, the product of a unique life of experience.

Blessed with a searing three octave vocal range, Rebecca Noelle has had the privilege and versatility to try her hand at just about every musical style she’s wanted to over the years. But it’s her natural affinity for jazz that has set this stunning singer apart. With a velvety voice that is simply unforgettable, Rebecca brings to mind some of the artists of whom she has been influenced by over the years like k.d. lang & Ella Fitzgerald. Noelle has shared stages with BB King, Norah Jones, Bonnie Raitt, The NAC Orchestra and The Jacksons to name a few. She’s serenaded troops in Kuwait, Mali, the North Pole, and toured across Europe and Asia. Rebecca is currently poised to release her third solo album which she is recording is both official languages.