about us

We've been providing unparalleled fine catering and event planning services for private and corporate functions since 1991. From menu creation to presentation to event logistics, we deliver outstanding dining experiences that people remember well after they leave. As a full service events company, we provide a variety of menu options, serving staff, bartenders, chefs, rentals, entertainment, valet, floral and decor.


Whatever vision you have for your event, our chefs and special events team will take it above and beyond your expectations.



meet our team


Brent Barkwill

Brent Barkwill

General Manager

Brent is a results-oriented leader with extensive management experience within operations and business development. His focus is facilitating continuous improvement to increase the value of Gourmet Cuisine's business partnerships over the long term. Brent came to us from Compass Group Canada's ESS division, where he directed the culinary and retail operations for an upscale facility that serviced 1800 residents. His well-rounded experience includes Director of Sales at the Windsor Arms Hotel, Director of Sales and Marketing at the Glen Erin lnn & Spa, plus operations management positions at the Sheraton Centre Toronto Hotel (Canada's Largest Conference Hotel), Westin Bayshore Resort & Marina, and the world renowned Fairmont Chateau Whistler Resort.

Brent believes that food can form powerful emotional connections and bring back wonderful memories. This is why he loves to make his homemade rustic Bruschetta. It was not only the first dish that he was able to master but also the dish his kids truly love. It is this extraordinary emotional connection that he strives to create for the people around him every day.


Matthew Hickey

Executive Chef

Before joining Gourmet Cuisine, Matthew developed his signature style working with culinary teams around the globe. His culinary travels included time in Britain, where he was the Chef at SoHo House, an exclusive private member's club in central London.

Upon returning to Canada, Matthew assisted industry legends such as Mark McEwen and the Oliver and Bonacini team at a variety of Toronto fine dining venues and special events. Most recently, Matthew was the executive chef for luxury retailer Holt Renfrew. Matthew has demonstrated that he knows the Toronto scene and works to fine- tune recipes, representing the freshness of every ingredient and bringing out its flavours.

Matt's love of food and progressive cooking style continues to meet the changing demands of the industry. He manages our expanding catering and events department by experimenting with the latest food trends. Despite having worked in the industry for so many years, his cooking style has enabled him to learn something new every day. He is excited to be a part of the new wave of chefs who focus just as much on sustainability and ethical sourcing as they do on creating new dishes and menus.

Matthew Hickey

Sean Finnerty

Sean Finnerty

Executive Sous Chef

Sean's talent for menu development and mastering innovative techniques has been an integral part of Gourmet Cuisine's creative, yet accessible menus. Most recently, Sean was the Sous Chef for Oliver & Bonacini's events and catering division while overseeing their luxurious Malaparte and Arcadian Court event spaces. Prior examples of his leadership within Toronto's culinary scene are as Executive Chef at Glow Fresh Grill & Wine Bar; Chef De Partie at Harvest; Sous Chef at Bella Notte Ristorante; and Chef Tournant at Jump.

Simplicity is the motto for Sean when he cooks. He is inspired by his food memories and believes that food can act as a time machine and take you back to your past. When he way young, his grandfather used to cook a dish called 'Hom Yee Jeng Yook Baeng' (Steamed Pork with Salted Fish) for him which has driven his passion to recreate food from memory. Today, he combines the simplicity of ingredients with molecular gastronomy to build stunning masterpieces.


Rob Gauntlett

Catering Sales Manager

20+ Years' experience in Food and Beverage Management at Senior Level complimented with a strong culinary background. Dynamic Sales and Marketing Skills have allowed the successful achievement of producing catering events including the contract for Loyalty Group Event feeding of over 3000 guests. Supplying catering for the City of Toronto, EMS Services, and 26,000 Sandwiches for Indigo Café. Developing the daily and event catering sales for TELUS, CI Funds, Ontario Teachers Pension Plan, College of Surgeons and Physicians of Ontario, Ferrero Canada, Thompson Reuters Canada, and PWC. The successes as a Senior Food and Beverage Manager includes developing action plan for successfully opening of two restaurants within a 60-day period. Exceeding set P&L targets; Menu Development including building of Recipe Specs; Leading a team in training to meet and surpass their set objectives. Highly motivated and will always have a positive spin along with a vibrant personality in developing business relationships.

Rob has a passion for food and he believes that food supplies comfort. He is intrigued by the way food is made around the world and takes inspiration from different cultures when cooking at home. He often experiments at home by mixing different flavors from around the world.

Robert Gauntlett

Sonia Hunte

Sonia Hunte

Event Sales Manager

Sonia is a driven sales professional with over 20 years of experience. Most recently as the Senior Sales Executive for the CTM Media Group she managed business development and marketing opportunities for clients such as the Greater Toronto Hotel Association, Ontario Tourism Marketing Partnerships, and Tourism Toronto. In addition to sales and marketing, Sonia has experience with organizing and executing events for the Heart and Stroke Foundation and various media outlets. Finally, Sonia has proven her presentation skills as a television and radio host, Toast Master award winner, and as host and organizer for the annual 600 person Barbados Gala Ball. Sonia is passionate about food, being married to a private chef, she is an avid foodie. She enjoys spending time with her adult sons watching Formula One racing, soccer, and basketball, or cycling with her husband in the country side.

Sonia is excited about food because it makes people happy. She knows that food is simple and delicious thing, yet it can mean so much more. She loves cooking for her husband and two sons and believes that food is the perfect way to stay connected with members of her family because it allows her to chat and find out what's going on in each person's life.


Jill Piezonka

Catering Coordinator

As the catering coordinator, Jill is responsible for overseeing daily operations and ensuring all events are executed smoothly. She communicates with clients in regards to event planning, working with them one-on- one to understand their specific needs. She acts as the liaison between clients and the team at Gourmet Cuisine, creating and posting order forms for the kitchen and for the drivers. Jill has several years' of culinary management experience, including Vittoria Trattoria and Mavericks in Ottawa and the Four Seasons in Dubai. Prior to this, Jill received her culinary management diploma from Algonquin College's School of Hospitality and Tourism.

Jill believes that food brings people together and enjoys sharing meals with her loved ones. She bakes and decorates cookies and when she is not eating them all by herself, shares them with her colleagues.

Jill Pieczonka

Arif Bengi

Arif Bengi

Financial Controller

Arif has been with the Compass Group since 2004. In the past, he has worked as the National Account Manager for CBRE/IO accounts in Canada for Eurest Dining Services and also managed the Macdonald Block Food Service in Toronto. He loves taking on new challenges, and over the past 14 years he has grown and learned a tremendous amount about the industry. He aims to gain insight into developing upon his current leadership strategies to network with his peers and share best practices.

For Arif, food is special because it is at the center of all his family gatherings. He believes that food enables the people to share their culture learn about others. He loves Turkish food including Lokum, Baklava, and Turkish Coffee.


Abhi Chand

Marketing Manager

Abhi has over 8 years of experience in strategic marketing, continuous improvement, and change management. In the past, he has worked as the Marketing Manager for The Park Hotels and with IBM, Philippines. He is a Project Management Professional (PMP) and has a Lean Six Sigma Greenbelt Certification. He is also a certified Business Skills Trainer with experience in training C-Suite managers on topics such as problem solving and decision making. Fluent in English, Hindi, Punjabi, and Tagalog, he brings to us a global work experience and a passion for creativity. His strengths include managing integrated marketing communication plans with a strong focus on forecasting, financial planning, and reporting systems. He is a member of the American Marketing Association (AMA), the Canadian Association of Marketing Professionals (CAMP), and has an MBA from the Schulich School of Business. He also plays Underwater Hockey and has won 6 gold medals at the Asian Underwater Hockey Championships as a member of the Philippine National Underwater Hockey team.

Abhi travels for food and loves discovering new and exciting places to eat. He once drove for 6 hours just to try a burger. If he could do anything for a day, he would eat everything…twice!

Abhi Chand

Abraham Haq

Abraham Haq

Quality Assurance Specialist

Abraham has a focus on delivering results through effective quality control. He has previously worked as the Senior Events Coordinator for George Brown College where he designed and executed processes to increase the scalability and effectiveness of events. He brings his experience of enforcing brand standards to ensure the highest level of quality and standard operating procedures. He works with our suppliers, customers, and partners to improve our efficiency and profitability by reducing waste and focusing on sustainability. He has a Diploma in Events & Meeting Management from George Brown College.

Abraham believes that not only is food life sustaining, but it often joins us as couples, family and friends. For him, food is more than just for sustenance and he loves the way food is prepared, presented, and served.


Brianna Smith

Chef De Partie

Brianna is one of our up-and- coming culinary talents. Her impressive knowledge of vegan and vegetarian cuisine is at the centre of Gourmet Cuisine's ever-expanding vegan menu. Brianna comes to us after proving herself as the Chef De Cuisine of La Carnita Eastside and Sous Chef at Home of the Brave. Prior to this, Brianna earned her Red Seal while working as an apprentice for the prestigious Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise and gaining valuable professional cooking skills during her off-seasons at SAIT's culinary arts program.

Brianna is an advocate for sustainable eating. She is a vegan and believes that the move towards plant-based proteins does not have to mean sacrificing on quality and taste. She loves to recreate meatless versions of all the things that meat-eaters love including vegan ramen even a vegan Big Mac.

Brianna Smith

R. Sisirakumar

R. Sisirakumar

Station Chef

Sisirakumar Ramachandran was born in the small town of Sri Lanka where he started his first step of his art career at the age 16. In 2004, Sisirakumar immigrated to Canada and enrolled in various rolls such as interior design, murals, landscaping, plumbing, painting, and drawing. At the age of 23 Sisirakumar made the decision to enroll at the Compass Group Canada as a salad maker for a short period of time, but through his creativity, he has embraced an interest in culinary. Sisirakumar had a keen eye and precision at cutting, chopping, carving, dicing, presenting cold foods such as salads, charcuterie, cheese board, hors d'oeuvres' and with his artistic twist. Under management's direction, he permanently became station chef for cold side department at Gourmet Cuisine. His main passion is now culinary but he still enjoys designing, painting and drawing on his free time.

Sisi is inspired combining his love for art with his passion for food. He loves to create artistic representations of food and treats his plates as his canvas. His favorite food is a hearty garden vegetable curry made with fresh ingredients and vibrant spices.


Kirsten Dorman

First Cook

During her 20 years of culinary and hospitality experience, Kirsten has gained a firm understanding of many types of cuisine, including International, Caribbean, plus vegetarian focused Health and Wellness menus. Over the last 3 years, Kirsten worked her way up to Chef De Partie for Oliver & Bonacini's events and catering division, leading exclusive events at the TIFF Lightbox, Malaparte, Arcadian Court, Carlu, Toronto Board of Trade, and the NBA All- Star Reception.

Kirsten's prior experience includes Chef of My House Bar & Grill; Opening Kitchen Manager for a Health and Wellness Retreat in Ibiza where she oversaw their health and wellness menus with a high concentration on vegetarian cuisine; Line Cook for a Gastro Pub called Jason George; server at Melanies Bistro will obtaining her Advanced Diploma in Hospitality and Tourism at Centennial College. Kirsten began her culinary journey at the age 15 as a cook for the Toronto landmark, Mr. Greenjeans.

Kirsten loves to cook because it makes people happy. She believes that food is a great way to bring people together and she loves making food for all ages, conditions, and social classes. She aims not only to cook but to share knowledge, culture and mutual respect.

Kirsten Dorman

Arthur Bailey

Arthur Bailey

Lead Driver

Arthur has been working at Gourmet Cuisine since 2011. He brings over 20 years of hospitality and customer service experience. With a strong background in restaurant and hotel fine dining, Tundra at Hilton Toronto is where Arthur perfected his ability to deliver best-in- class service. He takes great pride with having assisted with the openings of Jingles Too, Scaramouche and Sassafraz. He goes above and beyond the satisfaction of the client to ensure our food arrives on time, with meticulous planning and attention to detail. Arthur works closely with our clients and maintains great professional relationships. Arthur is the lead driver for Gourmet Cuisine and fleet supervisor for Ontario.

Arthur enjoys cooking and he judges food not just by appearance and taste, but also by aroma. For him, the intricate association between smell and flavor enables him to create his favorite dishes at home for his loved ones.