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Local chef brings spice to Riverfest Elora

Festival food - Tim Halley stands in front of his festival tent called Roti Mon during Riverfest Elora in 2014. He will be returning this year to offer his Caribbean curry roti specialty.  submitted photo

Local chef brings spice to Riverfest Elora

by Olivia Rutt

ELORA - Things are about to get spicy at Riverfest Elora this weekend. Tim Halley, a local chef and shareholder of The Fat Duck Gastro Pub in Guelph, is bringing his talents to the festival with Roti Mon.

The fresh homemade roti and curry of Roti Mon was a hit at Hillside in Guelph this July where they sold over 2,000 meals.

Halley, who emigrated from Britain when he was young, said the curry was something different that he just jumped on.

“All Brits love curry. I’ve been making curry since I was a teenager and then I started looking around for catering but I noticed, no one really had great curry so I decided on the roti and that was a good festival meal because you can hold it,” he said.

He added it was fun explaining why he was making curry.

“I’m a British guy and they’re like ‘why are you making Caribbean food?’… It’s big in the UK, I just did my spin on it,” said Halley.

Halley has always had a knack for cooking, starting at age 9 he was making crepes and bread. He landed his first cooking job at 14 and trained at the Stratford Chef School.

Halley explained simple ingredients and good pub cuisine are his passions. His style is called gastronomics, the science of good eating. He explained he makes shepherd’s pie using fine dining techniques and preparations, so the  end result is great pub food.

“Gastro pub is what I really love because of my British roots but I was also trained as a fine dining chef. The two came together and for me, it was a real hit,” said Halley.

“I keep the ingredient list simple and try to execute it perfectly.”

Halley is keeping busy as a chef. He has appeared on Chopped Canada on the Food Network and will be appearing on a new show called Carnival Eats on the same channel on Oct 31.

Along with Hillside and Riverfest, Halley catered for the sponsor’s tent at the Fergus Scottish Festival.

He also just opened a new store that acts as his home base for catering, Tim Halley Bakery and Catering on Wellington Road 7 in Ponsonby.


August 14, 2015


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