Pam Pridham

Fearless leader

Pam loves spicy foods. In fact, she is pretty sure that Sriracha is a food group.

She arrived at dish in 2004 as a barista before taking over as the school director the following spring. She took on ownership of dish in May 2009. An accomplished home cook, she has experimented with all types of cuisines, cooking for family and friends.

With her desk situated directly inside the dish kitchen, she spends her day with her passionate staff, chatting about food and indulging in their kitchen creations.

With frequent stops to the dish pantry, Pam’s cooking at home has definitely fallen to the wayside, but can you blame her?

Gord Pridham

Chief Tasting Officer

Gord’s favourite meal starts with a plate of heirloom tomatoes from his organic garden finished with volcanic salt and a drizzle of olive oil then moves on to fresh porcini mushrooms sautéed in a light cream sauce to pair with black cod. And yes there is still room for dessert.

The consummate globetrotter, Gord looks for inspiration from cutting edge chefs, whose food he seeks out in his regular travels. While not always onsite, Gord brings culinary inspiration to the dish team from his frequents trips abroad and excels in his role as chief tasting officer.

Jennifer Toft

General Coordinator

Jen especially loves braising, and eating all things braised.

Jen is an important lady at dish. She coordinates the cooking school and helps look after our café and all it requires. She found her way to dish four years ago when she started as a barista and quickly realized how much she loved working in a food-filled environment.

Her time at dish has broadened her culinary repertoire, prompting her to experiment with new cooking techniques and ingredients in her own home. Jen loves to entertain and plan dinner parties for guests; this is probably why she is so good at her job.

Paula Bashford

Resident Chef

Chef Paula loves to eat a good steak with blue cheese, particularly when it’s prepared for her.

She came to dish early 2010, making her way to Toronto from the Ottawa Valley. Paula studied Culinary Management at George Brown. She started her career catering at The Liberty Grand and later worked at Jamie Kennedy Wine Bar.

One of Paula’s many jobs at dish is to cater weekly breakfasts and lunches for a certain professional hockey team from Toronto. In the café, her refined palette shows in the flavourful salads she dreams up.

Paula’s high energy and creativity make her classes fun, she’s been known to teach an entire class dressed as a pirate. You never know what to expect!

Carrie Rau

Resident Chef

Carrie will eat any kind of seafood. From sea urchin to periwinkles to octopus, she has an appetite for all creatures plucked from the sea.

Carrie Rau is from the boroughs of picturesque Stratford. She graduated from Stratford Chefs School and went on to earn her red seal. Moving to Toronto in fall 2010, Carrie joined the dish team where she discovered her love of teaching. She spends her daytime cooking for the café and in the evening teaches classes centered on regional cuisines. Always looking to expand her culinary knowledge she hopes to learn more about exotic cuisines and pursue a wine sommelier certificate.

Danielle DeRoo

Resident Chef

After Danielle’s worldly travels, she craves all kinds of Asian cuisines. Most recently she has created the perfect Vietnamese pho at home.

Danielle grew up on the prairies where her grandmother used ingredients from her garden in her baking and cooking, which inspired Danielle to take up a career in the culinary arts. After she apprenticed under members of Culinary Team Canada, she went on to earn her red seal. From Saskatchewan to the UK, Danielle has worked in many fine dining establishments, leading her to find her true passion as a pastry chef.
In Danielle’s classes you can learn all about baking, from perfect piecrust to homemade bread. Since September 2010, Danielle has been the sweets lady at dish, who bakes our daily muffins, scones, cookies and tarts. Be nice to her and she might whip up a batch of your favourite cookies.

Karla Kulak

Resident Chef

Karla’s idea of the perfect comfort meal is homemade pasta with rapini and chorizo. When Luis Suarez’s chorizo delivery arrives at dish, Karla is quick to break open a package and get the pasta water boiling.

Hailing from the beautiful wine country of the Okanagan Valley, Karla became passionate about food after learning about other cuisines during her travels through Mexico and Africa. A graduate of the George Brown Culinary Management program, Karla spent her apprenticeship as a food stylist for Food Network Canada. She is fortunate to have spent time working with talented chefs at establishments dedicated to the local and sustainable food movement, such as Jamie Kennedy Wine Bar and Provenance Regional Cuisine. At dish Karla uses her culinary skills to ensure the café is stocked with creative prepared foods as well as teach dynamic and engaging classes centered upon regional cuisines.

Angie MacRae

Guest Chef

Angie has a love for cooking nourishing comfort food. Lately she has been exploring Moroccan and Middle Eastern cuisines, and cooking soup. A lot of soup.

A graduate of the Stratford Chefs School, Angie loves to pass on her love of cooking and wealth of knowledge by teaching in interactive kitchen spaces across Toronto. Angie has been featured on offering tips and tricks in the kitchen, and has co-authored This Food That Wine, a cookbook and wine-pairing guide. She co-hosted the TV series also titled “This Food That Wine” which aired on Food Network Canada, and hosted Global’s cooking show “Foodies.” Angie came to dish in 2004, and since then she has been teaching relaxed and inspiring cooking classes. Attend one of Angie’s boot camp classes such as “Made You Cook” – you’ll leave cooking like a pro.

Lisa Paul

Guest Chef

Lisa loves to eat warm weather cuisines; from Spanish tapas to Mexican food to Southern barbeque, she is seduced by interesting blends of regional spices.

A graduate of the Stratford Chefs School, Lisa slaved over a range of hot stoves, from Domus Cafe in Ottawa to Lemon Meringue in Toronto, before landing at dish in 2004. An accomplished journalist, she pens restaurant reviews and gastro-features for a variety of publications when she’s not in the kitchen. Lisa’s approach to cuisine incorporates a field-to-fork ethic, and is inspired by the wonderful, worldly meals she shared with gracious hosts during her travels. Lisa infuses her classes with warmth, creating a casual atmosphere with cuisines from Southern climates and a liberal use of spice.

Louisa Neumann

Guest Chef

After spending hours cooking elegant meals for others, Louisa loves to come home to indulge in the simple pleasure of peanut butter spread on a cold honeycrisp apple.

Louisa graduated from La Varenne Culinary School in Burgundy, France. She apprenticed at a Michelin star restaurant in Southern France and cooked at many fine dining restaurants and catering establishments across the United States. She taught at culinary schools in Portland and Chicago before coming to dish in the spring of 2011. Louisa teaches engaging classes where her warm and knowledgeable approach to ambitious recipes inspires her guests. Louisa develops recipes for Canadian Living Magazine and cooks at Chez Vous Dining.

Michelle Curnock

Guest Chef

Michelle grew up beside the beach in her native Australia learning how to cook fresh, tropical food and light, Asian-inspired fare.

With a Chef’s diploma from Niagara Culinary Institute and a Master’s Degree in Human Nutrition from Deakin University, Michelle’s primary culinary focus is on vegetarian and healthy eating. She has lived in Japan and cooked extensively throughout Asia and the South Pacific, before coming to dish in September 2010. At dish, Michelle makes use of her worldly culinary travels to teach Asian cuisine and simple, creative vegetarian classes with meals so delectable that nobody misses the meat.

Daily Menu

Jan 16

savoury scone: scallion and cheddar

sweet scone: cherry vanilla

muffin: raspberry lime

soup: mushroom bisque


leafy salad: mixed greens, grilled radicchio, Brussels sprouts, cherry tomatoes, herbed breadcrumbs, parmesan, basil vinaigrette

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