Dish March April 2018

What’s new ? Teresa Spinelli is MacEwan University’s 2018 Allard Chair; A Capella Catering goes Curbside, Rod Butters is the NAIT Hokanson Chef  in Residence, March 12-16

Congratulations Teresa Spinelli, the 2018 Allard Chair in Business, MacEwan University

Teresa Spinelli
Teresa Spinelli

“My business philosophy comes from my dad,” says Teresa Spinelli. “He believed that the more you give, the more you get.” Teresa is an indefatigable part of her community — as a volunteer, as a compelling speaker, as a mentor and visionary. She has multiple awards — Canada’s Top 100 Women Entrepreneurs, Women with Vision, the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal, the UofA Alumni Award.

In 2000, Spinelli became the temporary president of the Italian Centre, which, at the time, had 30 employees and a net worth of $9 million. She envisioned growing the business from a local grocery store to a major importer and distributor and, within one year, led the business to $12 million in sales. Today, there are four stores in Edmonton and Calgary, over 500 employees and $70 million in sales.

Yet the stores still feel intimate and responsive to their communities. They embody the spirit of the founder, Teresa’s dad Frank Spinelli.

That is the genius of Teresa Spinelli. In growing the Italian Centre Shops, she never lost sight of what it’s really about, the people who work at the stores, the people who shop at the stores and the community at large.

“For me it’s not about selling salami. It’s about the people. The reason I get up in the morning is because I want people to grow, and I want to share the experiences that I’ve faced over the years, so people know that is what helps them grow.”

For more than three decades, the Allard Chair in Business has upheld Dr. Charles Allard’s vision to recognize a distinguished businessperson and community leader and to provide students and faculty members an opportunity to meet an inspiring role model.

Individuals selected possess exemplary business acumen, demonstrate remarkable leadership skills and have made significant contributions to the community. We congratulate MacEwan for choosing Teresa Spinelli for this honour.

Kick off Downtown Dining with the Anti-Freeze Tour
Those clever folks at Alberta Food Tours have come up with a plan to kick off Downtown Dining Week (March 9-18). On Thursday, March 1, enjoy three courses at the Marc, Wishbone, and Kitchen by Brad plus a Jacek Chocolate delight. Tix: $89, Find all the deets regarding Dining Week at

A Cappella at the Curb

A Capella’s new food truck
A Capella’s new food truck

A Cappella has been catering Edmonton office lunches, events and parties for over 25 years. Now they are taking it to the streets. Owners Mich de Laive, Kim Szalynski and Todd Rutter and their chefs looked to Austin, Kaua’i, Portland, Vietnam, and Europe to create a menu that will take YEG street food to a new level. Expect breakfast and lunch dishes with a nod to Texas BBQ, French classics, Hawaiian beach food, and Portland food truck fare.

Find Curbside on the street, at events and at festivals; the grand opening will be at Sundance Ski & Snowboard Shop April 7. Check for their locations daily on

Rod Butters is the 2018 Chef in Residence at NAIT

Hokansen Chef in Residence Rod Butters
Hokansen Chef in Residence Rod Butters

NAIT continues its successful Hokanson Chef in Residence program with this year’s choice, Okanagan- based chef Rod Butters (see the Culinary Proust). Chef Butters will spend March 12-16 with the students and you get a chance to taste the results. NAIT is giving away four pairs of tickets to an exclusive lunch prepared by chef Rod Butters and NAIT students on March 15. But you have to be quick. Contest ends March 6, visit to enter.

The Complete Plate for a Complete Overhaul

Lauren Klukas’ new book
Lauren Klukas’ new book

Lauren Klukas says her The Complete Plate is not a diet book. She says it’s about lifestyle and how to eat well. The former competitive swimmer and personal trainer was diagnosed with a heart condition that meant she could no longer continue her extremely active life, she had to completely rethink how she ate. The book, the culmination of her extensive research on how to fuel our bodies, provides 30 balanced daily meal plans based on 1500, 2000 and 2500 calories. Follow it exactly, batch cook your favourites, follow it for five days a week — it is customizable and flexible. There are no demon foods, just a way to incorporate them so they don’t take over. Jam-packed with info about nutrition, ingredients, calorie counts, shopping lists and menus, it will take some work to set your plan up in the best way for you and your family. Lauren says that once she started following a meal plan that supplied the micro and macro nutrients she needed, her sugar cravings stopped. Now, that’s worth a bit of work. The Complete Plate by Lauren Klukas, Figure 1 Publishing, $29.95.