We found Chef Scot sitting down for a break and burger before settling into Tapestry at Arbutus Walk’s quiet private dining space for a chat about his experience in our Kitsilano community. Scot graciously offered a sample of the burger along with a tasting of the Quince beer brewed with Steve at Off the Rail Brewery and offered to residents. This was a new beef ordered locally from the Fraser Valley. And it was delicious.
Tapestry Retirement Communities takes great pride in providing an exceptional food program in a restaurant setting. This means it is very important to find top quality chefs. Scot has been with Tapestry for almost two years now. He had spent the more recent part of his career consulting in television and assisting to overhaul a local organic restaurant.
We asked Chef Scot to tell us more about his career.
Tell us about your cooking career
I am an island boy; I grew up in Victoria. I got my start with White Spot for six years where I split my time between the front and the back of the house. I was being trained to run the business which was great experience. After leaving the kitchen to pursue other work, I came to really miss the kitchen. So I decided to attend Dubrulle French Culinary School. In order to pay for schooling, I worked for the school at the same time. Upon completion, I worked for six years in French cuisine at Le Crocodile and at Le Gavroche where I learned a lot about wine. I then worked at Diva at the Metropolitan Hotel with Chef David Griffiths and gained great experience in cooking everything from scratch. In 2000, I went into film (catering and food styling) and stayed there for 10 years. I also had the chance to work with pyrotechnics in music videos! After this, I worked for a couple years for a local organic restaurant before working as a television Culinary Consultant in the Okanagan on a show called Quest out West: Wild Food.
Tell us more about your recent consultant role in television
It was a very interesting and varied experience. Not only did I consult on food but also on locations, props, and art direction. I also participated on screen as well. The show focused on local and aboriginal food with the Okanagan band. The show certainly has an audience. I was surprised to be recognized from the show while on a trip to Whistler!
When you were contacted by a recruiter for Tapestry, what were your initial thoughts on working for a retirement community?
I already had personal knowledge about the benefits of moving into a retirement community. My grandmother gained a new lease on life when she moved into one. Tapestry offers a caring and family-like environment. I like the holistic sense of wellness and I am so happy to be a part of it.
What are key differences as a chef working in a retirement community compared to a restaurant or on film sets?
I get to have more one-on-one conversations. Residents’ concerns are always taken seriously.
As Scot describes the relationships he’s been building with residents, he glances out the door to see one of Tapestry’s newer residents making his way through the restaurant.
“That’s Mr. Newman*. He recently lost his wife and has been losing his vision. We always ensure he has curved plates when he comes down to eat in the restaurant. This helps him maintain his independence and dignity when he eats his meals. It’s so important to put yourself in the shoes of the residents. This way we can serve them the best way we can. It’s often these little things that end up mattering so much”.
Scot described to us how in the past couple of months, the restaurant team along with the guest services team at Tapestry at Arbutus Walk have been focusing on providing more resident-focused events. Chef Scot hosted a beer tasting for residents and also shared his experience as a consultant for a TV program. These types of events help to foster connections and greater understand between residents and staff.
If you are interested in visiting Tapestry at Arbutus Walk in Vancouver’s Kitsilano neighborhood, contact them at 604.736.1640 to book a tour and a complimentary lunch! Be sure to ask for Scot and ask any questions you have about Tapestry’s food. Come and taste the difference!
*name changed for privacy
Learn about the TV show here: Quest out West: Wild Food.