Montreal isn’t known as a center of Jewish food (though it probably should be); and many Jewish communities are often overlooked when discussing “traditional” Jewish food.
But the women of The Wandering Chew are looking to revitalize the Montreal Jewish community, and promote the foods of lesser-known Jewish groups with their pop-up dinners and cooking classes in the city.
Katherine (Kat) Romanow and Sydney Warshaw are both food scholars and writers, who “curate” the Wandering Chew. Romanow wrote her master’s thesis on the Sephardic post-Passover celebration of Mimouna, and Warshaw is the great-granddaughter of a Jewish cookbook author.
Their dinners are hosted at restaurants, cooked off site and then prepped on-site. Publicized through social media, they host about 30 dinners.
Their website states the groups objective: “These dinners will change the way people think about Jewish food, while building a community of people who care about food, its history, and the stories connected to it.”
Themes so far have included Iraqi and Mexican Jewish cuisine. Wandering Chew also hosted a hamantaschen-cooking class on Purim.
Montreal is finally receiving international recognition for its bagel style, and legendary delis. Mile End’s Noah Bernamoff has brought the Montreal gospel to a wider audience, including with Black Seed Bagels. And with Wandering Chew, the city is poised to enhance its modern Jewish food bona fides even further.