In another sign that some mid-scale chains are stepping up their game, SIR Corp. — operator of Jack Astor’s Bar and Grill, Canyon Creek Chop House and Alice Fazooli’s — has announced that top Toronto toque Gordon Mackie, has been named director of Culinary Development for the entire company.
Mackie, who helped redefine the influential Toronto financial district restaurant Far Niente and who opened healthy dining hot spot, Four brings some serious culinary street cred to the post.
In his new role, the chef will oversee the menu development and overall culinary direction for the company’s Signature and popular chain divisions.
“I am proud and excited to announce the appointment of Gord Mackie in this new role. Gord is a rare breed. He’s an executive chef who is equally talented but humble; driven but calm; focused but witty,” said Corey Dalton, SIR Corp. president. “Since he joined the company, Gord has contributed significantly to the Signature division of SIR Corp. I believe his support of our executive chefs and leadership within the company will help drive our ongoing relevancy and culinary creativity.”
Mackie joined SIR Corp. in 2003, as executive corporate chef of the company’s Signature Group of downtown Toronto restaurants, overseeing the day-to-day operations at Far Niente and providing vision and direction for restaurants, including Reds Bistro & Wine Bar. Under his direction, Far Niente underwent a redesign and menu facelift in 2005, and Reds was retooled and relaunched in 2006. In 2007, he helped conceptualize and open Petit Four Bakery and, in 2008, opened Four. In 2009, Mackie focused on redefining Toronto’s The Loose Moose Tap & Grill.