Mistura Introduces New Chef to Media


By Rosanna Caira

TORONTO ― After 20 years in business, Toronto’s Mistura restaurant has a new executive chef at the helm producing a new take on the Italian classics that have become a trademark of the restaurant’s success.

Earlier this year, when celebrity chef Massimo Capra left Mistura to pursue other interests, owner Paolo Paolini sought out a new executive chef, promoting his Toronto-born sous chef Klaus Rohrich to the role.

“You can’t just rest on your laurels in this business,” says Paolini. “Of course, you have to continue to stick to what works, but with changing demographics and the importance of digital media and marketing, you also have to reinvent ways of doing business. It’s challenging, but very exciting as well.”

Rohrich is no stranger to the Toronto culinary scene, having worked at Centro and Prego before becoming sous chef at Mistura and Sopra six years ago. He intends to keep the dishes that have become well-accepted traditions at the restaurant — including the popular red beet risotto — but he’s also introduced new twists on some of the classics and is interested in serving food in a more relaxed environment. “The prospect of incorporating new flavour experiences and ingredients with traditional Italian cuisine is what interests me,” says Rohrich, who cures his own charcuterie. “I love and respect traditional Italian cuisine and am proud to prepare it, but I also love creating a recipe that surprises, intrigues and pleases our customers. A new Italian-food movement is evolving and I’m excited to be part of it.”

At a media dinner last week to introduce the new chef and preview the new menu, the culinary team highlighted several new creations, including sweet corn soup, balsamic-glazed lamb ribs, crispy artichoke, and wild boar agnolotti. Guests also sampled the boneless free-range chicken with squash caponata, chestnut purée and roasted onions, as well as pan-seared branzino filet with lemon-scented bean salad, manila clams and olive oil-poached roasted tomatoes.

The media dinner was capped off by a vanilla panna cotta served with fruits of the season and a strawberry meringue crumble, accompanied by Vieni’s Grappa Dolce Picante, the only grappa to be produced in Canada.

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Rosanna Caira is the editor and publisher of Kostuch Media’s Foodservice and Hospitality, and Hotelier magazines. In her capacity as editor of Canada’s two leading hospitality publications, Rosanna directs the editorial and graphic content of both publications, and is responsible for the editorial vision of the magazines, its five websites as well as the varied tertiary products including e-newsletters, supplements and special projects. In addition to her editorial duties, Rosanna also serves as publisher of the company, directing the strategic development of the Sales and Marketing, Production and Circulation departments. Rosanna is the face of the magazines, representing the publications at industry functions and speaking engagements. She serves on various committees and Boards, including the Board of Directors of the Canadian Hospitality Foundation. She is a recipient of the Ontario Hostelry’s Gold Award in the media category. In 2006, Rosanna was voted one of the 32 most successful women of Italian heritage in Canada. Rosanna is a graduate of Toronto’s York University, where she obtained a BA degree in English literature.

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