The Depanneur + The Bentway:
COMMUNAL PICNICS 2022
The Depanneur and The Bentway are back this summer for a 4th year of diverse and delicious food events. The 2022 Communal Table series is bigger and better than ever, with 20 events running June 16 to Aug 23.
⚠️ NEW DATES: Picnics are now on Sundays ⚠️
THURSDAY nights sit-down Communal Dinners take place at Strachan Gate at The Bentway, SUNDAY nights are take-away Communal Picnics at The Bentway Studio at Canoe Landing, both featuring some of your favourite Depanneur cooks showcasing flavours from all over the world.
2022 Communal Picnic Lineup
Events & tickets will be posted several weeks before each event.
June 21 | Newcomer Kitchen | International
July 3 | Maria Polotan | Filipino
July 10 | Dali Chehimi | Tunisian
July 17 | Elita Rocka | Indonesian
July 24 | Tuba Tunç | Turkish
July 31 | Jose Arato | Spanish
August 7 | Candace Esquimeaux | Anishinaabe
August 14 | Lhundup & Tsewang | Tibetan
August 21 | Erika Araujo | Mexican
August 28 | Mary Freij | Middle Eastern
Upcoming Communal Picnics
Past Events › Bentway Picnics 2022
Newcomer Kitchen started at The Depanneur in 2016 as a grass-roots initiative to create social and economic opportunities for newly-arrived Syrian refugees. After a wildly successful 3-year pilot at The Depanneur, Newcomer Kitchen expanded to become a entrepreneurial training program aimed at helping diverse groups of newcomer women gain experience in the food sector. Global Pan is one of Newcomer Kitchen's newest cohorts, women from around the world who have come together to share their foods and cultures with Toronto. Featuring women from Syria, Afghanistan, China, Taiwan, and a mother & daughter team from the Bahamas, this eclectic group has put together an exciting international menu for our inaugural Communal Picnic.Find out more »
The Philippines is an archipelago of thousands of islands, with hundreds of unique and distinctive local cultures, along with a complex and multicultural history profoundly influenced by Chinese, Malay, Spanish and American cultures. Yet some dishes, like adobo, have become beloved classics and are likely to be found in Filipino homes across the country. Tonight Maria Polotan of Mama Linda's shares some of these traditional Filippino favourites incorporating fresh, local ingredients.Find out more »
Long-time Dep favourite, Chef Dali Chehimi brings a mix of traditional Tunisian and Moroccan favourites to the table for a delicious tour of North African cuisine. Complex spices, lush combinations of sweet, savoury and spicy, Mediterranean ingredients and a hint of French colonial influence make for an exquisite culinary adventure.Find out more »
With more than 17,000 islands populated by more than 300 different ethnic groups, Indonesian cuisine has incredible breadth, depth and variety. Home of the original “Spice Islands”, Indonesia has been a culinary destination for centuries, sharing spices like nutmeg and clove with the rest of the world while absorbing and reimagining Indian, Chinese, Arabic, Thai and Dutch influences. Indonesian food boasts many unique flavours, textures and ingredients worth exploring, and tonight Chef Elita of NaiNai Noodles shares a few distinctive and authentic Indonesian recipes.Find out more »
Turkey has an ancient culinary tradition stretching back to the very beginnings of Western civilization. From these deep roots the Ottomans developed a sophisticated and aristocratic cuisine based on ingredients and influences pulled from an empire that stretched from North Africa across the Middle East and into Greece and the Balkans. The flavours of contemporary Turkish food emerge from this mix of cultures and traditions, and shine in Chef Tuba Tunç’s selection of traditional Turkish dishes.Find out more »
Paella is often thought of as the Spanish national dish, but it is really a speciality of Valencia, though it has countless regional variations. This classic rice dish has five key ingredients: short-grain rice, saffron, pimentón (smoked paprika), olive oil and the large, shallow paellera pan from which the dish gets its name. José Arato, owner and Head Chef of Pimentón, will be preparing his paella live on site in his giant 100 cm wide paellera!Find out more »
Chef Candace — whose name is Nawatiin Kwe, meaning Calm Water Woman — is an Anishinaabe entrepreneur from Aundeck-Omni-Kaning on Mantoulin Island. Her passion for food started as a child, and continued to grow over the years as she helped prepare foods for lunches, events, and ceremonies in her community. An interest in wellness and nutrition, emerging from more than 10 years as a frontline worker, also informs her approach to sourcing and preparing healthy, local, seasonal foods. Chef Candace has prepared this meal to share with us, inspired by the traditional foods and connection to the land of her First Nation family.Find out more »
Momos — hearty dumplings of simple dough wrapped around delectable fillings, served steamed or fried with spicy sauce — are probably Tibet’s best known culinary export. In fact, momos are well-loved in many of the countries around the Himalayas, with countless variations in ingredients, appearance and names. But especially in Tibet, momos are not just food; they are also symbols of festivity and celebration. They are served during important social occasions like marriages, New Years and other special family gatherings. Join Tsewang & Lhundup of TC Tibetan MoMo, for a taste of traditional Tibetan fare, all made with local, organic ingredients sourced directly from the Ontario farmers they work alongside at several of Toronto’s farmers’ markets.Find out more »
Mexican culture has a profoundly long history, with settlements reaching back to 10,000 BCE, and a pre-Hispanic agricultural legacy contemporaneous with ancient Egyptians. This rich and ancient tradition, combined with centuries of Spanish colonial influence, has evolved into the full glory of contemporary Mexican cuisine. Tonight Chef Erika Araujo of Ixiim prepares a selection of classic Mexican dishes from, a colourful and flavourful picnic perfect for a warm summer night.Find out more »
In so many of the world’s culinary tractions, delicious food and their warm memories are the domain of grandmothers. Chef Mary Freij’s newest project, Teta’s Kitchen is an homage to those recipes, connecting Mary to her Palestinian and Lebanese roots, and sharing the stories and flavours from her family’s kitchen.Find out more »
The Bentway Studio at Canoe Landing
The Bentway Studio (45 Fort York Blvd.) is part of the beautiful new Canoe Landing Community Recreation Centre, between Spadina & Bathurst. You can enjoy your picnic in the adjacent Canoe Landing Park, or take it to any of the scenic green spaces in the area like the Toronto Music Garden, Little Norway Park, Garrison Common, Coronation Park, or Trillium Park.
Pay It Forward
At check out, you will be given the opportunity to either contribute towards a supplemental Pay It Forward meal. For every Pay It Forward meal purchased, The Depanneur and The Bentway will work together to provide a second meal to double the impact of your generosity. All Pay it Forward funds will be used to create fresh meals for the The Spadina-Fort York Community Care Program; @spafycc
Communal Picnic FAQs
Where is The Bentway Studio and how do I get there?
You can enjoy your picnic in the adjacent Canoe Landing Park, or take it to any of the scenic green spaces in the area like the Toronto Music Garden, Little Norway Park, Garrison Common, Coronation Park, or Trillium Park.
Take the TTC:
- 510 Spadina exit at Fort York Blvd. and walk West
- 511 Bathurst exit at Fort York Blvd. and walk East
- 509 Harbourfront exit at Dan Leckie Way and walk North
Bike to The Bentway!
Use Bike Share Toronto’s System Map, or download CycleFinder or Transit app to locate stations and plan your route with real-time bike and station availability. There is ample bike parking and BikeShare station in front of the Canoe Landing Community Recreation Centre.
There are a number of Green P paid public parking locations including along Fort York Blvd, on Capreol Ct, on Dan Leckie Way, as well as under the Canoe Landing Community Centre (from 4pm-11pm only).
What if it rains?
Meal pickup will take place rain or shine; no refunds will be issued for meals not picked up.
Can I eat my picnic on site?
Yes! Picnic meals are packed and ready to eat. As the meals are sold in multiples of 2, to minimize waste, some items may be packed with more than one serving in a single container. Plastic cutlery is NOT included, so we recommend you bring your own cutlery, and optionally plates as well if you wish to eat on site. There are a few public picnic tables available adjacent to the Canoe Landing Community Center, and plenty of green space, stairs and benches in the area. You are encouraged to bring a picnic blanket, and we will have some additional blankets available for a $10 donation towards our Pay It Forward program, while supplies last.
Are there washrooms at The Bentway?
The Bentway provides accessible public washrooms, located in the middle of the site just west of the skate trail. Please note: Due to COVID-19, a limited number of stalls are available and masks are required to access these facilities. Please practice safe physical distancing protocols while visiting. Washrooms and site furniture are available for people to use until 7:30pm only.
Can you accommodate special dietary restrictions?
As meals are prepared and pre-packaged off site, and the menus being prepared are for this event only, we are not able to accommodate specific dietary restrictions beyond the meat and vegetarian options that are available. The Depanneur will try and clarify any potential allergens in the event description. If you have specific questions about ingredients, please contact The Depanneur directly.
Can I BYOB?
There will not be any beverages included in the meals. Some non-alcoholic beverages may be available for purchase on site, and there are water fountains on The Bentway property. You are encouraged to bring a beverage of your choice, but be aware that City of Toronto by-laws prohibit the consumption of alcohol in public.