Cookbook Update: Part 2

Spring mid 2018-01.jpg

What is this? 

Back in May 23, 2017 we launched our passion project called: Forest City Cookbook. Its purpose: a celebration of our local culinary community and a special way to bring people together and encourage everyone to create long-lasting memories around the table. 

Our original plan was to feature 30 local chefs and 20 local producers, but our numbers doubled along the way, gathering a wonderful team of 60 talented culinary artists and 40 dedicated local producers. 

We decided that our project would be completely crowdfunded. A minimum goal of 1000 copies pre-ordered was set and we put perks in place to help with getting contributions. We achieved and surpassed our goal back in October 2017. Today, we sit at 1470 copies pre-sold and we've set a NEW goal of 2000 copies, we hope to hit 2000 by the end of February. (Yes, we extended our pre-sale!!)

Along the way, we've met some incredible people, who've kindly joined us as partners and pre-ordered the book by volume. If you, or someone you know may be in a position to join us as a partner, take a look at our Become a partner section.

Forest City Cookbook Partners

Our hope is that the ForestCity Cookbook will work in many different ways:

  • be a beautiful coffee table book

  • an inspirational tool for home cooks to learn from the best chefs in London, Ontario

  • a challenge to other culinary professionals in the industry to broaden their skills

  • as a tour guide for visitors to be able to find the iconic restaurants available

  • a guide for people to learn about ingredients, farmers and the many advantages of buying your food locally

  • a reason to be proud of London, Ontario

and maybe the most important, as a catalyst for creating meaningful memories with family and friends around the table! 

Artists and Artisans 

By now, we hope that you've learned about everyone involved. But, in case you missed it, you can find a full list of culinary artists and a list of producers and artisans on this website.

Forest City Cookbook - Chefs Cooks - Producers - London Ontario Culinary by Alieska Robles


The Forest City Cookbook will be a 300 page...wait, we're now up to a 430 page, hardcover book featuring more than 135 original recipes developed by local talent, using local ingredients.

The recipes will include small plates, mains, desserts and drinks all indexed into three categories:

  • Traditional

  • Vegetarian

  • Vegan

The recipes will showcase different culinary techniques ranging from simple to complex, as well as a great mix of traditional and more modern cooking influences that showcase the many different culinary backgrounds which make the Forest City so special.


From May to August we went prop-hunting at various antique shops, thrift stores, artisan studios and garage sales. We contacted local potters, woodworkers and crafty friends, until we finally we gathered a total of 920 props and surfaces. These props and surfaces were selected to help create a scene around each individual recipe used to aid in telling the story around of each of those recipes, through vintage elements. We spent countless days organizing until we were finally ready to invite all the chefs to our provisional studio space, at the McKaskell Haindl showroom.

During the months of September, October and November, we had each chef visit the studio, one by one, to prepare their recipes and have them staged and photographed. We tried our best to document this whole process, to give our partners an idea of what they were investing in. If you missed any of the action, you can look back at our behind the scenes photos and videos for each of the 27 days of shooting. 


And just to give you a bit of a teaser, here are some of the quality of photos and recipes you'll find in the cookbook: 



Putting the Pieces Together

This is where we're at right now. Editing photos, designing the book layout, proof reading the recipes, gathering all the farmers' stories and doing our very best to pull it all together and get the book in your hands.

The current stage is by far the most demanding and creatively challenging stage yet, so our production team is working tirelessly to keep everything on track. The constant support and positive feedback has been priceless and keeping us excited and motivated to make sure we stay true to our vision in making the best culinary and agricultural showcase this area has ever seen!

There's still a few more months of waiting, but we assure you that we are doing our best to meet the best standards, however, there might be a slight delay on the delivery date since we decided to feature more talented artists at the last minute and included 130 more pages to enjoy. It will be a bigger and better book, so it will be worth the wait! We hope to have our book ready to rock 'n roll once the flowers start to bloom and the veggies start to grow! 

Thank you so much for you incredible love and support! Remember the Forest City Cookbook will be a one-time exclusive edition. We will only print the number of copies pre-ordered and no extras, so tell your friends they still have time to order.

We want you to juice this book. Get it dirty on the kitchen counter, pour over the stories in bed with family, use it to share delicious meals with friends - or gift it to someone special. But most of all use it to discover or rediscover this place we call home - The Forest City!