Quetzal (‘ket-sal’) celebrates Mexico’s culinary heritage, combining traditional methods and techniques with local Canadian produce, meats and seafood, to create a dining experience that redefines Mexican cuisine in Canada. Quetzal is a collaboration between Kate Chomyshyn, Julio Guajardo, Owen Walker and Grant van Gameren.
Quetzal’s chef duo of Julio Guajardo and Kate Chomyshyn have travelled extensively through Mexico to study Mexican cuisine and bring an authentic representation back to Toronto.
Exploring markets and visiting restaurants in the many, varied regions, the couple discovered the comal, a clay plate used over an open flame to cook masa, salsas, moles and much more.
The history of Mexican cuisine is long and diverse. Mayan traditions focused on the use of corn and beans. The Aztecs focused on the use of chilis, chocolate and honey. When the Spanish arrived, they brought livestock, spices and other ingredients. This influence created a diverse regional cuisine that today is UNESCO recognized as part of our cultural heritage.