Four-star takeout

Chef and restaurateur Mark McEwan wants to get into your kitchen. The culinary drive behind Toronto restaurants North 44, Bymark and the recently opened One, plus a catering business - as well as the host of the Food Network's The Heat - McEwan is breaking into retail, selling his own line of gourmet take-home meals in a specialty grocery store.

Chef and restaurateur Mark McEwan wants to get into your kitchen. The culinary drive behind Toronto restaurants North 44, Bymark and the recently opened One, plus a catering business – as well as the host of the Food Network’s The Heat – McEwan is breaking into retail, selling his own line of gourmet take-home meals in a specialty grocery store.

‘McEwan’s’ will open in the Shops at Don Mills, currently under construction in Toronto, this fall. The shop will serve as an alternative not only to supermarkets and delis but to restaurant meals as well, says Chris Lund, CEO of Toronto-based Perennial, who developed the brand identity and positioning, package design, communications and store design and layout for McEwan.

‘He’s really viewing himself as a brand, and building it in a way that is transferring well beyond his restaurant sites,’ says Lund. ‘So if you loved the food you ate in his restaurant and you want either a similar version to take home or the ingredients he uses, you can go to his store and he’ll make them available to you.’

Perennial is currently planning promotional support for McEwan’s grand opening. ‘He’s looking to leverage all of the relationships he’s got, so I think there’ll be an interesting viral program to launch the store,’ says Lund. ‘There’ll be programs this summer to warm people up for the [launch].’