The Big Idea: The Bearfoot Bistro: taking a passion for unique culinary adventures to new heights

The Big Idea is a new bi-weekly column that will showcase a Whistler business that is innovating their sector and aiming to elevate the business community by sharing a BIG IDEA from which we can all learn.

This Saturday (June 28) André Saint-Jacques, host and founder of the Bearfoot Bistro, and his team will serve up a culinary experience with serious altitude.

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The Skyhigh dinner, presented in partnership with the Whistler Blackcomb Foundation, will see his team execute one of their most unique events to date, with a dinner unlike any other served on board the Peak 2 Peak gondola.

The following afternoon, they play host to some of the world’s best oyster shuckers and bartenders at their fourth annual World Oyster Invitational & Bloody Caesar Battle on the grounds of the Whistler Golf Club’s practice range.

This departure from the traditional dining room is a key piece of their strategy to build a strong brand for the Bearfoot Bistro, keeping them top of mind for customers seeking unforgettable culinary experiences. When creating and hosting events they try new things and get creative. As a team they challenge themselves, raising the bar higher with each new event and as a brand they create personal moments that leave a lasting impression.

Thinking outside the dining room

It’s all about innovative platforms. The team’s expertise gives them the confidence to dream big and execute even bigger. Whether at an altitude of 424 meters with the Skyhigh dinner in the Peak 2 Peak or at a nippy -32˚C in their vodka tasting room, the team are masters of dreaming up completely new events and experiences. Saint-Jacques is not afraid to push the boundaries and create something completely new, leading his team to showcase their skills on creative platforms. The hope is that guests leave with not just the memory of exceptional service, delicious cuisine and fine wine, but also the lasting impression of a personal culinary adventure.

Friends helping friends

They know the value of partnership and embrace every opportunity to collaborate with suppliers and partners. By joining forces with other power players within their network they can supercharge the horsepower behind their events and create a product that far exceeds what they would have been able to accomplish on their own. The Bearfoot Bistro World Oyster Invitational & Bloody Caesar Battle is a terrific example of the power of these partnerships. This fourth annual event would not have grown to the success it is today without the support of their suppliers and partners, many of whom they have a long history of business success with.

Their guest is the star of the show

They shine the spotlight on their customer and create an environment where guests are empowered to “jump in” to create their own moments. For Saint-Jacques, there is nothing more rewarding than having guests create their own culinary journeys. Whether sabering their own bottle of champagne, venturing into the world’s coldest vodka room for a tasting or hopping on board the Peak 2 Peak gondola, they set the stage and the customer becomes the star. The experience is always interactive and exciting.  
Saint-Jacques on creating unforgettable culinary events:  “Never stop dreaming. Your achievements are only limited by your imagination. Life is made of a collection of moments.  Be a moment factory!”

Michelle Ratcliffe is the marketing and communications manager at the Whistler Chamber of Commerce.

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