Hawthorne Food and Drink, a more upscale Fabarnak, to hit Richmond East this summer
Coming to Richmond and Church in late August or early September is Hawthorne Food and Drink, the brainchild of former Fabarnak executive chef Eric Wood. Much like Fabarnak, Hawthorne will emphasize the surrounding community: the menu will reflect local flavours found within the diverse neighbourhoods in and around Toronto, and the restaurant will adopt similar practices to the acclaimed hiring procedures at Fabarnak (employing and training those early in their careers in the food industry). Located in the 60 Richmond Street East Housing Co-op building, the restaurant is associated with Unite Here Local 75 and local hotel management, in a setup a little like that of the Culinary Academy of Las Vegas. “The fact that we are affiliated with the union really helps us get great staff,” Wood told us, “and we contribute by giving new skills and a new edge to the talent pool.”
Beyond the restaurant’s social commitment, Wood assures us that “the food and atmosphere will blow people away.” Lovers of Fabarnak’s Square Peg bento box should look out for Hawthorne’s own version of the popular dish, with items sampling cuisine from around the world. The fully licensed 46-seat restaurant will be open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and will boast a takeout counter as well. With both Hawthorne and Top Chef Canada winner Carl Heinrich’s restaurant set to open on Richmond this summer, Wood predicts big things for food in the area. Oh, and as for the name? It’s a riff on the edible flower, with some literary flavour to class things up.