We acknowledge that Green Artichoke occupies unceded Indigenous land belonging to Coast Salish peoples.
This land boasts some of the richest and most bio-diverse soils, forests and waters on the Planet. Nourished by minerals washed from the mountains, by the cold currents and thick rainforests, this land pulsates with life. Add to this a rich cultural history and what we are left with is a truly unique and inspirational place to exist. From the Coast Salish people who harvested these lands and waters for thousands of years, to today’s cultural melting pot, Victoria and the whole of Vancouver island boasts a truly unique and exciting food culture like nowhere else on earth.
We aim to celebrate this land through food and community while remaining mindful of our footprint in the unceded territory of the Lekwungen People, also known as the Songhees and Esquimalt communities, also known as Victoria, British Columbia
Welcome to Green Artichoke
Much of my life has been dedicated to exploring the natural world, cooking and sharing food. Over the time, the inter-connectivity of all life on this planet has become increasingly apparent. Food and flavour is our most intimate experiential connection to our environment. As a youth, I fell in love with gastronomy, with the seemingly endless combinations of flavour, texture and colour that could be produced using proper technique. As I grew and explored sustainable farming, I became increasingly aware that this was where the magic lay, not with the preparation of the cook, but with the soil. A healthy and happy farmland produces healthier and tastier produce. The flavours that are created here, from the soil, dwarf the culinary efforts of even the best chefs.
After a lengthy career as both a restaurant chef and private chef, my fascination with the natural world and our relationship with food seemed to grow exponentially. Throughout this time, I’d come to understand that to truly appreciate fine cuisine is to understand ingredients. How and where this produce is grown, foraged, or hunted tells a story to us through flavour. Eventually, I came to the seemingly obvious conclusion: The tastiest food is fuelled primarily by conscious farmers and purveyors. Farmers who put their hearts and souls into allowing nature to create are the true culinary heroes. A chef’s place is to assemble these ingredients, to accentuate and celebrate their inherent flavours.
One of our generations’ most influential names in gastronomy James Beard once said: “food is our common ground, a universal experience”. For me, this statement has always resonated particularly strong. Food is our primary and most intimate connection to our surroundings. It transcends cultural boundaries and allows us to connect universally. Even in instances where language or cultural differences appear to distance us, great food can bridge that gap.
Born and raised in Ottawa, Ontario Chef Kyle Gerrard fell in love with food as a teenager on weekly dinner trips to Ottawa’s Little Italy with his father. After graduating from Le Cordon Bleu culinary school in 2008, he moved to Vancouver to immerse himself in this city’s fine dining scene throughout Vancouver Island, Victoria, Whistler and the lower mainland.
The journey began as an unpaid apprentice under former Michelin starred chefs at some of Vancouver’s finest venues including Lumiere, Le Crocodile and Araxi in Whistler. He accepted the first paid position at the 4 diamond, Relais and Chateaux venue Bacchus at the Wedgewood Hotel. For the following three years, the young cook progressed through the ranks at such famous venues as 1892 the private dining lounge at the Terminal City Club and the 4 diamond Fairview at Chateaux Lake Louise. In 2011, he accepted an offer to return to Ottawa to cook with a small team of accomplished chefs from around the country in the Prime Minister’s private dining quarters at the House of Commons.
After brief head chef stints at Ottawa’s Divino wine studio and Napo, our Chef realized that his heart remained in the catering world and working as a personal chef. He decided to incorporate a love for travel and cooking and set off to explore the world working as a private chef on chartered super yachts and villas. Chef Kyle continued to work as a personal chef in homes and Villas providing personalized private dining, catering to those keen on experiencing a unique take on local cuisine, wherever local may be. 40 countries and hundreds of satisfied clients later, our chef and the Green Artichoke movement has returned to the unceded lands commonly know as Victoria and Vancouver Island to share the locally grown delights of Victoria’s organic farming community. transforming local ingredients, sourcing sustainability, and building community.