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Chef Stories:  Meet Personal Chef Tim Stewart

Chef Tim presenting a plate

Personal chef Tim Stewart

“WOWZA” is how one manjya client described Ottawa-based personal chef Tim Stewart and their experience with him.

Clients recount Tim’s food, flavours and food presentation as exceptional, but there is something deeper within that is so appreciated by Tim’s clients.  They love his relaxed, pleasant, calm and friendly disposition and it is obvious to them that Tim truly cares about his clients and his work.

Tim began his life in the food service industry directly out of high school.  As he was working in the “front of house” aspect of the business, he kept a close eye on what was going on in the kitchen.  He would see chefs transform basic ingredients into exquisite dishes, and at the end of a long day at work, he would go home and try himself what he saw chefs creating.

Disney Pics of Tim (1)

Tim working at Walt Disney World, 1992

Tim attributes much of his customer service expertise to the training he received in 1992-1993 while working at the “Happiest Place on Earth”: Walt Disney World.  After all, no one does it better than Disney!  During his year in Florida Tim worked as the Food and Beverage Host for the Canadian Pavilion at Epcot and in Magic Kingdom’s Emporium.  His most important take-away was learning to treat customers like they are the most important people in the world.

Following his year at Disney Tim continued to work in the food service industry, still in the front of house, while honing his chef skills on the side at home.

In 2000, Tim’s wife Jodi came home and told him about a friend in Edmonton who had started a business as a personal chef.  He had never heard of such a thing!  Going into someone’s house to cook for them? After a lengthy conversation with their friend, Tim felt like he had finally found his calling, and in March of 2000 personal chef Tim Stewart launched his business.

Tim’s goal? To make his clients’ kitchens feel like their own personal Bistro.

Tim learned quickly that starting a business is difficult.  People didn’t know who he was or what he did, and it took some time to build up his clientele and reputation.  After pounding the pavement handing out flyers himself, success through word of mouth, and mostly his drive and tenacity, Tim was finally able to quit his ‘other’ job three years after starting his personal chef business.

Tim now has a steady following of weekly meal clients, and private dinner party clients.  He has bookings as far out as June!

Tim maintains the strong core values he acquired while working at Walt Disney World in everything he does.  He always has fresh home-baked bread on the menu (the smell of it baking alone is to die for), and has created some truly special items for his menu.  His risotto is out of this world, his crème brûlée is heavenly, and his wine pairings are spot on.

Tim’s goal of bringing the restaurant to his clients’ homes has materialized into his thriving personal chef business.

Tim doing his art

Tim doing his art

With respect to working with manjya, Tim says,

My experience being a chef associated with manjya has been amazing.  First of all, the team is always very courteous and prompt with replies and will get me an answer to a question I have requested in a timely manner. 

The website is a powerful tool and I am thankful for being part of the manjya family, as this is business I may not have received if not for the manjya website. 

I’ve had the pleasure of knowing Mia Andrews (I am proud to call her my friend) who is one of the founders of manjya and all I can say about her is that she is a foodie who is looking out for chefs and always has their best interest at heart – hence the creation of  

I look forward to pleasing many more taste buds through”

One encounter with Tim is all you need to know that he truly cares and loves what he does.  He maintains his goal to bring his clients the best experience possible, so they can feel like guests at their own parties.  Who wouldn’t love that?




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