Toronto // Following months of searching, Veal Farmers of Ontario (VFO) has bestowed the title of Ontario’s Best Veal Sandwich 2018 to Kitchener’s Nostra Cucina restaurant. The overall contest resulted in the nomination of 129 Ontario restaurants (and a few Nonnas), 14 semi-finalists, the consumption of 42 contending sandwiches and a head-to-head judging of the finalists in Toronto, Ontario.
“To find our finalists, the judges ate 14 sandwiches each during a three-week journey around the province – tough job, I know,” said John Catucci, judge and host of the Food Network TV show, You Gotta Eat Here. “Our criteria was based on the tenderness of the Ontario veal cutlet, the flavour and consistency of the tomato sauce, the freshness of the bun and the overall eating experience.”
Each of the four finalists put their unique spin on the ubiquitous veal sandwich at an exclusive event held at Toronto’s historic St. Lawrence Market. In front of an audience of family, friends and veal sandwich fans, judging was overseen by Catucci, celebrity chef Teddy Reader, sports writer Steve Simmons, Veal Farmer’s of Ontario executive director Jennifer Haley and Hamilton’s own Tracy Luker, who won her spot at the judges table along with a night’s stay in Toronto through a contest hosted by the VFO.
Rounding out the finalists were Kantene of Mississauga, Paninoteca from Hamilton and Kingsville’s Mettawas Station Mediterranean Restaurant, but it was the sandwich from Nostra Cucina owners, Sian Burns and Dina Marsillo, that won them the title of Ontario’s Best Veal Sandwich 2018.
Dina and Sian are firm believers in serving their customers food they would prepare for themselves. Their sandwich is carefully stacked with veal that they source from a local farm and butcher. The rich house-made sauce marries perfectly with the lightly breaded tender cutlet and sings alongside hand-sliced cherry peppers. It’s no wonder that the popular sandwich created by this dynamic duo draws such a loyal following.
“Every veal sandwich lover has a favourite place to get their fix, so we set out to find the best one in the province.” says Jennifer Haley, executive director, Veal Farmers of Ontario. “Almost all of the restaurants nominated are like our farmers; family-run and proud of the quality of what they produce for consumers. Throughout this contest it has been a great honour to bring attention to these amazing businesses, their owners and their delicious Ontario veal sandwiches.”
Want to judge Ontario’s Best Veal Sandwich for yourself? The map below shows where you can find our finalists and semi-finalists!
For more information, and a map of the locations of the finalists, visit bestvealsandwich.ca.
The Ontario Veal Farmers are a proud supporters of Feast On. If you’re from the foodservice industry and want to learn more about Ontario Veal, check their guide. The Ontario Veal Appeal Foodservice Guide is an all-in-one downloadable guide that provides menu ideas, cut information, storage tips and more!