Meet Matt, the Drake Devonshire's Newest Chef

Posted by Drake, December 31, 2013
Drake Devonshire: a sneak preview.

Drake Devonshire: a sneak preview.

We're counting down the months, the weeks, even the days until we can unveil our latest addition—the Drake Devonshire Inn. Having restored and redecorated a beautiful historic property in Prince Edward County, we'll be bringing a slice of Drake to county life. Imagine it: the Drake vibe meeting rustic, rough-luxe Canadiana—the sort of place where you can sip an earthy, robust Prince Edward County wine on our patio, gaze out over the lake, and wear flannel without Queen West traffic anywhere in sight.

We're not even kidding—our new deck literally hovers over the water.

Of course, the Drake food vision will be along for the ride, too, with both indoor and outdoor restaurant spaces, and classics with a twist under the watchful eye of Corporate Executive Ted Corrado. But Teddy needed a man about town and a head chef to run the Devonshire's kitchen, another all-important ingredient in the Drake mix. For that reason, we're beyond thrilled to be bringing Matt DeMille onto the Drake team. DeMille had a ridiculously huge 2012, and as we’re pleased to report, his 2013 didn’t exactly show signs of slowing down, either.

If you’ve visited any of Toronto’s best destinations for good eats, chances are you’ve come across DeMille’s unique, exquisitely-imagined culinary style. First a sous chef at Parts and Labour, then chef de cuisine at Enoteca Sociale, his enviable resume as a culinary artist throughout Hogtown eventually caught a few eyes in 2012 outside our fair city. Before long, that career arc brought him to Wellington’s Pomodoro Trattoria & Wine Bar, on the threshold of spectacular, picturesque Prince Edward County. Commanding such an impressive reputation for talent, considering the other visionaries on deck in Prince Edward County, you could say he's in particularly good company—not to mention a particularly great place.

It’s a place where his craft can speak for itself, DeMille suggests—the right environment for truly exploring and perfecting the art of food. “In the city,” he told the Globe and Mail back in September, “I’d still be at work doing my ordering at 1 or 2 am. Then I’d sleep a bit and head right back to work.” The life of a chef in pristine Wellington, he suggests, is anything but the intensity of slinging gourmet cuisine in competitive, fast-moving Toronto.

After all, Prince Edward County is a place where style and substance are one and the same. Rather than sacrificing community for atmosphere, or vice versa, community and atmosphere are the essentials of life on this rustic, laid-back eastern edge of Lake Ontario. And with the abundance of local, fresh ingredients—think about those clear waters, teeming with fish—that atmosphere can be brought back to one word: authenticity.

And that, of course, is where we come in.

Like DeMille himself—tattooed and skinny-jeaned, with a heart that aches for the country—we’re talking about a big-city brand relocated to the pastoral countryside, synthesizing the best of both worlds. With that in mind, we couldn’t be more thrilled that two roads, in this case, have become one. As the Drake Devonshire’s chef, DeMille promises to be an export of the Drake brand we’re very, very proud of.

Perhaps even Drake personified.

(Photo Credit on AKE: Natta Summerky)

Posted in: Drake Devonshire

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