Nova Scotia

Dartmouth chef brings 'East Coast flair' to Top Chef Canada

Renée Lavallée is the co-owner and chef at The Canteen on Portland. She will compete on the seventh season of the Food Network show as the only Atlantic Canadian chef.

Renée Lavallée is the co-owner and chef at The Canteen on Portland

Renée Lavallée is the co-owner and chef at The Canteen on Portland and Little C Take-Out in Dartmouth, N.S. She is a competitor on Top Chef Canada's seventh season. (CBC)

Nova Scotia fans of the show Top Chef Canada could see a familiar face when it premieres April 1 on the Food Network Canada.

Renée Lavallée, the co-owner and chef at The Canteen on Portland and Little C Take-Out in Dartmouth, N.S., is the only competitor from Atlantic Canada competing this season.

"You know, it was really awesome," Lavallée told CBC News of the experience. "I made some really amazing friends, [had] really tough competition.... I really walked away loving the experience."

Last June, someone messaged Lavallée through Instagram to see if she would be interested in competing.

"It was something that I never really thought about, but you know what? Things have been going really well here at the two restaurants and I have a really amazing staff and why not?" she said.

Although filming has wrapped up on the show, Lavallée only publicly announced she would be competing five days ago.

Lavallée said there were some interesting challenges competing on the show, including tight time limits to complete challenges, working with a camera in her face and using unfamiliar equipment and ingredients.

But she said it was worth it.

"If I had to do it again, I probably would," she said.

Lavallée couldn't get into specifics about what happens on the show, but said she was sure to represent Nova Scotia with some secret homegrown ingredients.

"Lots of East Coast flair ... as you watch as the show progress, you'll see Nova Scotia certainly is shown quite rampantly," she said.

Lavallée plans to watch the show's premiere with staff and friends "somewhere local on the Portland Street strip."

With files from Amy Smith

Comments

To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.

Become a CBC Member

Join the conversation  Create account

Already have an account?

now