Meet Chef Erin Woodley of OWL Rafting | Ontario Culinary
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Meet Chef Erin Woodley of OWL Rafting

Everyone knows that the best parties always end in the kitchen. With our series, Kitchen Party, we’re sitting down with Feast On Chefs to get to know them, and the local foods that inspire them, a little better.

Erin Woodley

OWL Rafting

Forester Falls, Ontario

What’s your favourite seasonal ingredient?

Choosing a favourite seasonal ingredient feels like choosing a favourite child. I love the evolution of berries that ripen over the summer. I love the versatility of the tomatoes we grow in our garden. My secret favourite food child however, has to be basil. From pesto, to bruschetta, to an extra zest in our Thai spaghetti salad, basil adds so much to so many dishes and tastes like warm summer days.

What’s your drink of choice?

Whitewater Brewing Co.’s Whistling Paddler English Ale is my drink of choice. It’s brewed just up the River and is a refreshing and full bodied beer. Bonus points for its strong connection to the rapids our customers run each day.

Most underrated ingredient?

Brussel Sprouts! They have a horrible reputation but, when roasted, are delicious green candies.

Favourite restaurant?

A little Mexican Restaurant in Ottawa called Ahora!

Off-duty, what are you most likely to be cooking at home?

At least once a week I whip up a bolognese sauce. It’s incredibly easy, totally delicious, and a great excuse to use tons of fresh basil and oregano.

What’s the best part of working with Ontario food and drink?

I love the relationships I can build with our food providers. I love that I can geek out with our produce man when the corn is from the farm behind his storefront, and that I can drive past the shop that makes the ice cream we serve when I go to town. Working with local ingredients means that I can take pride in the dishes they go into, and build a community behind them.

Why is Feast On important to you and your restaurant?

We work hard at OWL to create hearty, home-style meals with fresh ingredients, and for hundreds of rafters each day! Feast On links us to a community of like-minded businesses across the province. I hope we can help dispel the belief that you have to be a tiny restaurant to source great local ingredients.

If I entered a competitive eating contest, I’d definitely win if the item was…

Raspberries. I’m a strong believer in the one-for-the-basket, one-for-me philosophy.