Winterlicious and Summerlicious are culinary celebrations in Toronto that take place bi-annually. Last Friday I visited Hawthorne Food & Drink to try out their set Winterlicious menu. What really interested me about Hawthorne wasn't just the menu, it was its mission.
Hawthorne Food & Drink was established for the sole cause of giving back to the community. On the one hand, the restaurant serves delicious food made from local, seasonal and sustainable ingredients. On the other, it provides free training and career development for people in need of skills and employment. [...] In 2015, HWTC trained 300 participants at Hawthorne and other industry partner facilities, including unemployed youth and those in receipt of Ontario Disability Supports and Ontario Works.
The experience itself was great! Our waiter (shoutout to Kevin) was incredibly friendly and welcoming, our food came out quickly, and the set menu ($28 for dinner) had some great options! I had the Daily Croquette Poutine, Carbonara, and the French Toast Bread Pudding. The set menu included options that I would describe as "warm, hearty comfort food". The poutine, for example, was comforting but not heavy and like the carbonara, it was rich in flavour so the smaller portions were perfect! This restaurant not only provides exceptional food and service, but they provide training and experience for people in need, such as at-risk youth.