Bakers Journal

Editor’s Letter: A change is as good as a holiday

September 16, 2021
By Bakers Journal

As autumn approaches, Canada begins to really show off its beauty. Brightly coloured leaves appear on trees, warm welcoming smells of sugar and maple waft out from bakeries and the sound of crunching leaves underfoot are all part of the fall experience. 

With the changing of the leaves, many have the urge to travel to see fall in other cities, taste a new treat that is particular to a region or is a local café’s speciality. It’s not a road trip without snacks, and lately, many road trips have been designed to help foodie tourists find their new favourites. 

Initiatives like the Great Taste of Ontario, which is an online resource for gourmet travellers, brings bakeries, patisseries, and confectioners to the traveler via an app that can be downloaded. It’s a virtual “passport” that the tourist can use to explore food options along a route, check in at a location and redeem points that can lead to rewards (aside from great tasting food).

The Great Taste of Ontario aims to bring tourists out of hiding, even if they are just exploring new boroughs in their hometown. However, this isn’t a new phenomenon. If social media sites like Instagram are any indication, there’s no end of fascination with food destinations in Canada. People want to see what others are eating. For those who are still in isolation or are unable to travel abroad, a taste sensation from another country is as close to travel as we can get. Between gifted chefs, and a rich terroir of findings, there’s no end to nationalities and combinations that bring traditional and non-traditional flavours together. 

As the world tries to reshape itself from the pandemic, Canadians want to see other sites, and feel like they are somewhere else. This is where bakeries can strike the balance between providing a taste of “home” or thrilling taste buds with a new sensation, when everything around us still looks and feels the same. 

In Quebec, “Terroir et Saveurs” (Land and Flavours) meets the recent surge in culinary tourism by recognizing the importance of local food and agro-tourism. Manitoba’s Tourism Winnipeg webpage offers a “patios and murals tour,” a beer and spirits tour, as well as showcasing its pubs, restaurants and cafés.

From coast to coast, tourism professionals are taking a page from social media’s curiousity for what’s on someone else’s plate, while promoting local chefs online. If you can’t travel, a trip to find a new snack offers a chance to explore another nation’s speciality. Agro-tourism is the closest we can get to travel until the pandemic clears. / BJ      

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