Owner, Bistro One, Jean Robillard is delighted to host the 2nd Greek Supper Club next Tuesday, along with renowned Chef Peter Minaki – an expert on Greek cuisine. Tickets to this popular event are sold out, but donations are still gratefully accepted in support of the fundraising efforts to purchase 8 new hemodialysis chairs for the Renal Department’s expansion, as the Hospital works to serve our community’s increasing need for dialysis. You can donate at http://bit.ly/DonateToRenal or call 345-4673.
By Heather Vita - September 30, 2017
For the second year in a row, fine Greek cuisine and wine will be coming to Thunder Bay through the ever-popular Greek Supper Club, to be held next Tuesday evening at Bistro One.
Owner Jean Robillard is thrilled the event is back once again. His level of excitement was palpable as he recalled last year’s event and the opportunity for him and his staff to work with renowned Chef Peter Minaki. “One of my favourite moments from last year was watching my team interact with Peter and having them learn how to prepare food that was of their comfort zone. I actually recall Peter teaching them how to make the baklava cigars and the grape leaves – it was very rewarding to see them absorb that and feel confident in preparing the dinner in a way that was foreign to them.”
Robillard himself was a guest during last year’s event, but has switched gears this year and will be working in the kitchen. “It’s a lot of fun,” he said. “Peter and I have worked together to prepare for this event over the past several months and I’m looking forward to us having a great evening together creating a meal that guests won’t soon forget.”
Regular patrons at Bistro One seem to always remember great meals since they’ve been coming back and supporting the restaurant for 23 years. “The longevity we have says something,” said Robillard. “Our community has always been so supportive of us and so, when we’re given opportunities like this to give back, we’re very happy to do so.”
Proceeds from the Greek Supper Club will be directed to the Renal Fund of the Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Foundation to support the purchase of 8 new hemodialysis chairs in the Renal Department, critically needed for the Department’s expansion. Brought to life by Lisa Sandham, the event is unique in Thunder Bay and has very special meaning for Sandham, whose mother Francine spent many hours in receiving dialysis.
The chairs are not your ordinary run-of-the-mill lounger – they are made from steel frames and can accommodate patients up to 440 lbs. They also feature upholstery that has antimicrobial and antimycotic properties and have the ability to be adjusted electronically in multiple configurations by the patient. Also included is a backrest that supports CPR. Accordingly, they also have a high price tag, costing thousands of dollars each. Last year’s Greek Supper Club raised enough to purchase one new chair that replaced an aging chair; it has already received tremendous compliments from patients who’ve used it. This year’s proceeds will support the need for additional new chairs as the need for dialysis has increased significantly and new dialysis stations are required to support patients in our community.
Sandham is particularly grateful for the outpouring of support she’s received for the event and said, “Knowing we are all working together to better patient care is what keeps us all motivated. I’m so thankful for the many sponsors and event guests who are ensuring we can continue to replace the many chairs in the Renal Department. My thanks especially to Jean and his team who have graciously embraced this event, and to Chef Peter, who has provided us with his culinary expertise.”
For his part, Robillard has no plans to start serving Greek cuisine on a regular basis, but hopes to continue the tradition that’s been started, especially given the popularity of the event. His advice is to grab tickets quickly next year since they’re so popular, and of course, “I hope people will give generously to the cause,” he said. “I live here in Thunder Bay and I enjoy it. I’m happy that we’re able to contribute to help our local healthcare and I hope that inspires others to as well.”