CHEF DAVE WILSON
I love being a chef, but if I were doing anything else it would be home renovations, general contracting, or some type of woodworking. I’ve built plenty of furniture in my basement workshop, and I helped renovate three kitchens in my youth.
Speaking of kitchens and youth, I used to work at The KEG restaurant for many years in my teens. I loved it then, and I still love it now. In fact, it’s one of my favorite restaurants.
For meals, I love a BBQ’d steak – cap-on, bone-in rib steak done over charcoal to add even more flavour. Add some grilled yams, asparagus, and sweet peppers, make up a nice chimichurri from my home-grown herb garden … now we are talking dinner!
My hobbies include gardening. Herbs and Vegetables, not flowers. When spring hits, my veggie seedlings go in the ground. Nothing better than fresh to the table. I use the extra herbs that I grow at home for our culinary demos in our test kitchen at our office.
Contact me if you need a hands-on demo of our equipment.
CHEF DAN FRENETTE
I love being in the great outdoors, especially with my family or good friends. Any chance for an adventure, you can count me in. Whether it be snowboarding, mountain climbing, hiking, hunting, fishing or just cooking an awesome meal around a fire, this is me in my element. I know it is a bit of a juxtaposition that I live in downtown Toronto but hey, I love having the best of both worlds that are easily experienced in this awesome country. Speaking of Canada, I couldn’t imagine myself living anywhere else in the world, mind you, I wouldn’t mind having a log cabin on the coast of BC or in the Yukon. A guy can dream, right?
Dream job……. hmmm, this is a tough one as I love what I do. But if I had to do anything else, I would want to be some sort of guide. Maybe a fishing/hunting guide or a Heli-ski guide. That does not sound like a bad gig at all.
Music, YES PLEASE! I have spent a large portion of my cooking career traveling the world and cooking for bands and their crews. It was an amazing experience and I got to taste food from so many incredible cuisines. On top of that, I got exposed to many musical genres. I like a little bit of everything I must say. Although, I do have my favourites like The Tragically Hip, Pearl Jam, Bob Marley, Café Del Mar, The Roots, Van Morrison to name a few.
All in all, I love food. Everything about it. Most importantly I love sharing food with other people. Cooking is a gesture of love that is meant to be shared with those around you. Food itself brings people together, and the preparation of food is an expression of oneself!
Follow me on Instagram @cheffy416!
CHEF MIKAEL OTTONI
My favourite food is, and will always be, a classic smoked meat sandwich. As a teen, I would slice and serve it and I’ve never tired of this delicious taste
Favourite restaurant is LeMeac. High-end French cuisine, and proper execution. A real landmark.
I would hope Leonardo Di Caprio would play me in a movie (lol)!
Hawaii is my dream vacation and is on our bucket list.
If I wasn’t at WDC I would be a Police officer. Yes, I wanted to protect and serve!
My hobbies are playing baseball with my boys, skating in the winter, and lifting weights in my home gym. Of course, I also love cooking.
On Instagram you can find me at @m_ottoni89 (it’s new and will be building this to promote new projects and food items I prepared in our brand’s equipment).
My favourite music is classic 80’s rock. It was an amazing era with really cool music: ACDC, Van Halen, Journey, Kiss, Metallica, etc. These bands were amazing!
See what Chef Mikael has learned through the years. Visit him in our W.D. Colledge test kitchen.
CHEF GABRIEL SANTOS
I was born and raised in Sao Paulo, Brazil. Besides the fact that I’m Brazilian, I’m a terrible soccer player and a horrible dancer, but I do wear my sunga when I go to the beach (Google it).
My interest in food started when I was a toddler. I was chubby, loved to eat (still do), and always tried to cook a few things here and there.
I had my first “professional” cooking experience when I was in high school. As part of the curriculum, I had to work somewhere for a few hours. So I ended up in a hotel kitchen in the middle of nowhere boiling sausages, chopping onions, and frying stuff with old ladies in a kitchen that had a pet parrot (yes, in the kitchen). That experience was enough for me to understand how much I actually enjoy to work in a kitchen.
After that, I went to college, spent some time in Mexico and Australia working for restaurants and hotels, before moving to Canada in 2014.
As a chef I don’t have a favorite food or meal, I simply love food when is properly cooked, no matter how simple or humble it is. Some of the best meals I had in my life were not cooked by chefs, but by people who love and respect food. I can’t imagine myself doing anything else, I’ve been working in the foodservice industry since I’m a teenager and I’m simply thankful for doing what I love.