The beginning of this new decade has been tough all round and us food lovers have taken to our own kitchens more than ever. Whilst whipping up or family favourites, we have been looking to some of the world’s best for inspiration.

The current season of Top Chef Canada is serving up many inspirational tips and tricks. I had the pleasure of speaking to the incredibly talented Adrian Forte about his career and time on the show.

Originally from Jamaica, Adrian Forte is a chef and culinary consultant for a number of food service groups in Toronto. His style of cooking draws inspiration from his roots, using flavours from Africa and the Caribbean islands while applying classic French techniques.

Adrian’s goal is to show that Afro-Caribbean and multi-ethnic cuisines are just as good as any other world-recognized cuisines.

“Your only competition should be yourself. You shouldn’t get distracted by looking at whatever people are doing. You should only want to be better than you were last time… that’s how I manage to keep climbing.”

Tell us a bit about Adrian Forte.

I’m a former restauranteur turned corporate  consultant, I provide everything from recipe development, catering, food styling and private chef services.


Where did your cooking journey begin?

I come from a whole line of chefs in my family, my grandmother, all my aunts, all my uncles, even my mom all spent some time in the kitchen professionally. Its a right of passage in my family.


What attracted you to the idea of entering Top Chef Canada?

I wanted to see how I stack up against the best chefs in the country, but more importantly, I wanted to make sure the Canadian culinary scene was represented  properly.


How have you evolved as a chef and person since the show?

I’ve taken a lot more risk in my cooking. I’ve also raised my standard on how opulent my everyday dining experience should be.


Tell us your best and worst Top Chef moments.

The worst moment was definitely the hot and cold challenge. That dish was a complete disaster. The best moment would be the PEI challenge where I made my seafood & potato bisque and oyster jerk hot sauce served out of the shell.


What have you been up to since the competition?

I’ve been working on my cookbook, scheduled for release on September 1st. The recipes focus on dishes inspired by the African Diaspora.


If you had to create a dish which reflects your outlook on the current global pandemic, what would it be and what would you call it?

I would make my salad from the hot and cold challenge, it embodies everything about this current global status. Uncertain, Unappealing and Unforgiving.


Now’s your chance to spill the tea on the competition. Tell us some of the juiciest Top Chef stories.

Even though it looks like we are one big happy family there has been some drama that has gone done that doesn’t make it to the cutting room floor. Let’s just say people fair when there is 100k on the line.


What tips and tricks do you have for Top Chef viewers who are thinking of entering?

Get lots of sleep!! my castmates will tell you, I slept every chance I got, during car rides, in between challenges, and I never stayed up late at night after filming. The shoot days are long so the more well-rested you are the clearer your mind and the better you can think to be able to come up with great dishes.


Check out Adrian in action online at Food Network Canada.