George Brown’s French patisserie students took part in the first Sweetery Toronto
On the weekend of Aug. 15 and 16 Toronto hosted the first sweets-only festival—Sweetery Toronto. The festival featured sweets created by artists, chefs and enthusiasts, critics and students to create an engaging experience that is both unique and affordable, according to Sweetery Toronto.
George Brown College’s chef school and it’s French patisserie post-graduate program was a collaborative partner for the festival.
Saturday afternoon was a busy time for the parking lot at Front and Portland and shortly after the event began people were gathering around the tents.
George Brown’s tent received the most attention with an ongoing line of approximately 10 people making it a challenge to speak with students about their program, their upcoming trip to France and the desserts they created for the event.
Shefali Gupta and Delna Patel were among the girls who ran back and forth to replenishing the constantly emptying refrigerator shelves. According to Patel there were 12 students enrolled in the program six of whom were presenting their creations on Saturday and the other six on Sunday.
It was an exciting and thrilling experience for all of them. While they were earning money for their desserts with the proceeds going towards their education, this event was also their final exam presenting in front of the chef as well as approximately 16,560 strangers, according to Nicolas Yu, founder and president of Sweetery Toronto.
Since attending the University of Toronto, Yu noticed that sweets were always a big hit at festivals and thought it would be a fun idea to create a festival dedicated to sweets. “Sweetery was the perfect idea to combine my passion for food and event planning.”
With Yu it was a team of eight full-time professionals and about 10 consultants and partners to help bring the idea to life. The planning process took three years and as Yu emphasized, “finding the venue took the longest time but once we secured one, we started meeting on a weekly basis for about a year and a half.”
The planning paid off.
“I would say collectively on our core team, we thought it exceeded our expectations. We were estimating 10,000 attendees to be at the event but over 16,000 showed up,” said Yu.
Yu has said, “From all the feedback we’ve seen, all things do point towards it being a very successful event, especially for its first year.”
Proceeds of the Sweetery Toronto festival went towards the SickKids Foundation. the largest charitable funder of child health research, learning and care in Canada.