Durham College welcomes fall with Harvest Dinner

On Thursday, September 22, 105 guests gathered at Durham College’s (DC) W. Galen Weston Centre for Food (Weston Centre) for a signature dining experience under the stars. The crisp fall weather was no match for the warm and celebratory sentiments of those in attendance, as the college proudly hosted the event for the first time since the start of the pandemic.

Upon arrival, guests enjoyed pre-dinner drinks and guided tours of the Weston Centre’s Urban Farm gardens before gathering under the strings of lights for a seasonally-inspired, multi-course meal at a family-style harvest table that spanned the length of the garden path.

Guests began with an assortment of shareables, including a selection of Ontario cheeses and charcuterie, DC-grown Harvest Bistro Salad and freshly baked sourdough focaccia. The entrée course boasted hearty dishes like Ontario roasted whole chicken with farm-herb infused gravy, smoked Ontario beef ribs with Bistro ’67 chimichurri sauce and roasted Atlantic salmon on a bed of DC-grown tomatoes and onions. To top it off, maple syrup butter tarts, apple strudel, raspberry and white chocolate panna cotta and lemon and DC-grown papaya meringue tarts were served.

Led by Bistro ‘67’s executive chef, Raul Sojo, the event was the result of countless hours of preparation in the Weston Centre’s fields, labs and classrooms, and truly exemplified the work of DC’s students and faculty. Leading up to the event, the college’s Horticulture – Food and Farming and Horticulture Technician students tended to and harvested the fields, working side-by-side with students from the Culinary Management and Culinary Skills to prepare the meal, while students from the Special Events Management, Hospitality – Hotel and Restaurant Operations and Hospitality Skills programs played a role in successfully executing the evening’s event.

“The Harvest Dinner is one of Bistro ‘67’s most anticipated events and it was incredible to welcome our community members back to the beautiful Weston Centre grounds after two long years,” said Kelly O’Brien, associate dean, Faculty of Hospitality and Horticultural Science, Bistro ’67 and Farm Operations, DC. “The amount of creativity, passion and talent demonstrated by the Weston Centre’s culinary team, faculty members and students continue to be an inspiration for exciting opportunities ahead.”

Those who missed the Harvest Dinner are invited to enjoy the Weston Centre’s fruits and vegetables, as well as other local ingredients at Bistro ’67, the college’s full-service, teaching-inspired restaurant that was recently named one of Canada’s top 100 most scenic restaurants. Student-prepared goods are also available at Pantry, the retail store located within the Weston Centre. For more information, visit www.bistro67.ca.