In tandem with the big Terroir Symposium this past Monday, Dave McMillan and Fred Morin took part in a Toronto food crawl with Momofuku man David Chang and Lucky Peach editor Peter Meehan.
Ann Hui, The Globe and Mail Toronto City Hall reporter, was on hand to record it all for posterity. Naturally, the Joe Beef duo turn some memorable phrases in the subsequent article "Dim sum, oysters and wings: Eating Toronto with Momofuku's David Chang (and his A-list friends)".
1. Morin, on Chang's love of a particular Toronto sports bar: "Forget about everything you've done. This is what you'll be remembered for – crossing [New York fine-dining restaurant] Le Bernardin with a sports bar. It's your next biggest achievement."
2. McMillan, on the marble digs at dim sum restaurant Crown Princess: "You could wash this place down with a hose."
3. Morin, in response to Chang's remark that he has not seen the Joe Beef boys in some time: "That's because we avoid it."
4. Meehan on a drunken episode at Joe Beef: "I went, 'Oh my gosh, Fred, I fell asleep in your restaurant.' And Fred said, 'It's okay, Peter. You can judge a restaurant by the way it treats drunks.'"
5. McMillan, on Terroir-like events: "Honestly, coming here for Terroir was an error on my part. It's nothing against Terroir specifically. Fred and I just have nothing to say to advance popular thought about anything."
6. Morin, on the same subject: "To know that people pay vast amounts of money [tickets cost $229 each] – we just don't think we're worth that. I don't think anybody is."
7. McMillan, on the Toronto restaurant scene: "The quintessential, great Toronto restaurant? That's always been an enigma. No kid from here has ever been proud enough to say 'I'm going to… open a restaurant and do appetizer, main course, dessert, the food of Ontario, the end."
8. Morin, on macho kitchen culture: "It's because guys want to get laid. They're acting like teenagers – making flower bouquets, trying to be impressive to make a large statement to get to a sexual goal. It's like buying pointy leather, polka dot shoes"
9. McMillan, on Toronto: "The soul of Toronto somehow... for me has always been the Maritime diaspora. The Maritimers who are educated, can't find work, and have moved to Toronto. It's almost a Maritimer's lament city."
10. McMillan: "For both Fred and I, one of the reasons we ended up in the kitchen is perhaps a fear of public speaking. So to end up being a chef with a minor degree of success, and all of a sudden to discover that we have to speak publicly again..."