A night out at the circus? A trip to Tuscany? Or perhaps a Caribbean cruise? Residents of Tapestry at Village Gate West have been on all these adventures – and more – with our spectacular “Staycations”.
At Tapestry, we pride ourselves on featuring excellent community restaurants which offer high quality, delicious and nutritious meals. Our culinary team also likes to take things to the next level with specially themed dining events. These Staycation events offer an exceptional meal in good company with creative themes that can transport residents to a special place, time or event. Past event themes have included The Love Boat, Spring in Tuscany and James Bond Night. Seating in the private dining room is limited to 12 and the events are always full, often with a waitlist.
Décor and culinary offerings are aligned to each theme, which is confirmed by the culinary team with resident input. Executive Chef at Village Gate West, Tiffany Pacheco, who creates menus matching each theme, says she gets inspired by watching chefs compete on the TV Show ‘Top Chef’. The team sometimes aligns Staycation themes to a special date such as Valentine’s Day and, Chef Tiffany says, they love creating something unexpected and fun for residents.
One of the more recent Staycation events was “Cirque du Soleil – Expect the Unexpected”. “Cirque du Soleil performed in Toronto in June, and I thought bringing the circus to Tapestry would be such a fun idea!” says Chef Tiffany.
Incredible menus a star feature of Staycations
The inventive menu for this event included fried plantain with bacon chip and brulé blue cheese, pan-seared scallops with fire-roasted red pepper, peanuts and citrus butter, roasted lamb with honey Dijon puree, and cinnamon sugar dusted donut holes with an assortment of interesting fillings for dessert!
Chef Tiffany also explains each course during the events. “The residents anticipate it and are very attentive to each description,” she says. “A lot of thought and detail goes into each plated item, and it translates.”
Tapestry residents give the Staycation events very positive reviews. “The quality of the food and the diversity is wonderful,” says Kathleen, who attended a recent event. “And it was a fun and festive atmosphere,” she adds.
In addition to the creative and delicious meals served, residents also appreciate the thought and effort that goes into transforming the dining space for each event.
“When I walk in, the room is always stunning,” says Elise, who has participated in several Staycation events. “The centrepiece has been unique for each theme and the table looks beautiful with candles, flowers and special linens. The presentation is so exquisite you feel like you’re in high society!”
For the Cirque du Soleil dinner, the décor featured bubbles, baubles and an overall carnival theme with a popcorn machine. “[These events] encourage one to get all jazzed up because it is something special,” adds Elise.
“I always try to bring the atmosphere of the place/theme into the private dining room,” says restaurant manager Larissa Gobbi. “I want the residents to be transported to the Love Boat or to Tuscany, or our other locations. When they arrive, their eyes light up and they smile with joy.”
Residents also like to get into the full spirit of the affair by dressing to match the theme – blue and white nautical wear for The Love Boat, and full glamour for the James Bond theme, for example. Plus, Larissa says, with the theme, decorations and food being great conversation starters, “It’s the perfect occasion to meet other residents and share stories.”
Larissa says the entire culinary team enjoys planning the events. “You feel the enthusiasm of everyone involved, and it goes beyond the decorations; Chef Tiffany and the culinary team work hard in researching and creating the incredible menus, so that everything turns out perfectly and as we imagined.”
Adds Chef Tiffany, “We have been getting such positive feedback from the residents, and seeing them thoroughly enjoy themselves from beginning to end is the cherry on top that makes all of the hard work worthwhile. The challenge is to try and top the last event!”
These Staycation events are a unique and wonderful way we at Tapestry build community and connection, while helping residents celebrate different cultures while enjoying great food and wine.
If you are considering making a move to retirement living, please contact us. We would be pleased to have you experience the work of our talented and dedicated culinary team first hand by hosting you for lunch and a tour.