Learning from Silver Spoons; great food & great T&D concepts

I was recently invited by Chris Flett of Ghost CEO and Cyndi Hunter of Silver Spoons Food Tours to take part in a culinary tour of foodie hot spots.  We took in 6 restaurants and my taste buds danced in delight, where for 3 hours, I sampled, savoured and salivated.

Here’s a summary of where we went and how it applies to training & development.

As this delectable drink glided down my gullet at Pour House I was thrilled to learn that it was created by a fellow female entrepreneur, Audrey Saunders who once owned a carpet cleaning business.  Not being captivated by carpets she took a bar-tending course and ended up at one of the top 20 bars in the world.

Lessons for learning – it’s never too late to follow your passion and learn something new

Next we dropped in at Nuba, owned by a Lebanese man whose family stopped off in Mexico before ending up in Canada.  The culinary result?  A traditional Lebanese favourite, deep fried cauliflower, infused with the Mexican influences of avocado and jalapeno.

Lessons for learning – keep the old and mix in the new for for what Nuba calls an authentic vrs traditional experience.
Rogue was next on our menu, the restaurant not the rascal.

There we were served salad that had croutons made of cornbread.  To die for!  They also served a sushi bomb with a pipette.  Pipette’s are normally equipment found in science labs, but this creative chef found a new use.  Filled with sauce, when you pop the morsel in your mouth, you also squeeze the pipette which releases the sauce.

Creative?  Yes.  Memorable?  You bet.  Applicable to T&D?  Of course?  What new uses can you find for things to make your training stand out?

At Guilt & Co we toured what had been an old tunnel used to run rum, which was now a funky beer cooler.  We also were drawn to cards at our table with questions that begged to be answered.  Questions such as “if you had to, what relatives would you lock up in the shed and why?”  “What’s the most beautiful thing you’ve ever seen?” And my fav, “paper, rocks or scissors?”

Implications for learning?  What simple tools can you use to enhance participant engagement?  Tip: make sure they’re appropriate for your organization’s culture, as what is one organization’s playful stress ball is another’s waste of time.

Finally at at Cobre I was tickled to find you could rent a room for a private party.  No big deal right?  Big deal as you could bring your own IPod and ergo have your own music played.

I was also entranced by owner Stuart Irving’s tale on how he got started.  Seems in high school he didn’t like mechanics.  The high-school counselor suggested he take cooking instead.  Once Stuart realized cooking the food included getting to eat the food he was hooked.  (That plus figuring he’d have a whole school year to make favourable impressions on his female cohorts.)

Implications for learning – the roots of our passion for learning can often be found early in our lives and customization and learner choice (in this case bringing one’s own IPod) is a great thing

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4 Responses to “Learning from Silver Spoons; great food & great T&D concepts”

  1. Cyndi Says:
    September 8th, 2010 at 9:30 pm

    Wow! What a great job of highlighting the tour stops. It was such a fun day. Thanks for posting!

  2. Lee-Anne Ragan Says:
    September 8th, 2010 at 9:54 pm

    Thanks to you Cyndi – it was an incredible tour. Whetted my appetite both for eating & for learning.

  3. Lori Charvat Says:
    September 9th, 2010 at 9:12 am

    As a FOODIE, I found myself wondering about the smells and textures and tastes at Nuba (which is top on my list of must-try spots in Vancouver). hmmmm. And the questions from Guilt & Co. – very provocative. Most of all, I really enjoyed the way you pulled this all together, Lee-Anne. Thanks for sharing.

  4. Lee-Anne Ragan Says:
    September 9th, 2010 at 5:52 pm

    Thanks for your comments Lori- glad they struck a cord (or should I say taste bud). HIGHLY recommend Nuba, have been there several times now and always had great food. Yes, loved the Guilt & Co questions. I was there with the Forum for Women Entrepreneurs E-series group and we were all doshing our drinks so we could read the questions.

    And speaking of questions, what intriguing questions are you asking yourself or your clients these days?

    Let me know if you try Nuba and what you think of it.

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