Watch out world, Gusto 54 Restaurant Group Commissary & Catering is making waves and there’s no sign of things slowing down anytime soon. Gusto 54 is continually developing new restaurant ventures and a key ingredient of their vision is the ongoing education and practice of sustainability.
With a passion for food, good value, and authenticity, Gusto 54 acquires goods from like minded local farmers and food purveyors. The business has been built with a respect for the past, as well as a passion to be new and relevant. In addition to recently attaining Ocean Wise certification, Gusto 54 Restaurant Group Commissary & Catering is now Level 1 LEAF certified.
They have always been conscious of environmental impacts, but becoming LEAF certified brought that awareness to another level. Prior to receiving LEAF certification, the Group Commissary & Catering operated under what some would consider to be typical sustainability practices, such as recycling.
“Since beginning the certification process, we have become more mindful about how we use energy on a daily basis; we’ve installed energy efficient lighting, tankless water heaters, and we’ve placed greater importance on incorporating sustainable and responsibly sourced seafood and produce items into our menus,” said Elio Zannoni, Gusto 54 Executive Chef.
Gusto 54 has also taken a closer look at internal operations and adjusted best practices as part of the company’s commitment to sustainability by minimizing waste and conserving energy wherever possible. LEAF certification has provided an opportunity to further educate the Gusto 54 team about the importance and impact of running a more eco-friendly business. Everyone has rallied around the sustainability cause, making environmental consciousness a collective goal.
They would eventually like to reach Level 3 LEAF certification across all locations and are currently working towards LEAF certification at two more locations. And if the past is any indication, potential future projects (such as growing herbs in-house and operating a Gusto 54 farm) are likely to take shape as the business continues to grow.
“If we all make the conscious decision to be even just a bit more sustainable in our day-to-day activities, we would have an extremely positive impact on the environment as a whole,” said Juanita Dickson, Gusto 54 President.
Gusto 54 began in 1996 when Janet Zuccarini (whose father was the first to import espresso machines to Canada) opened Trattoria Nervosa in Toronto. Since then, Gusto 54 has added a catering business, expanded its family of restaurants, and Zuaccarini herself is now featured as a resident judge in Top Chef Canada’s 2017 All-Star season.