“Family is whoever sits around the dinner table”
Julia Hanna’s lifelong philosophy has always been “Family is whoever sits around the dinner table.” This philosophy has set the tone for Julia’s culinary career.
Julia began her journey into the restaurant world at the age of 26 when she opened her first restaurant Café Galleria in Downtown Oakville. In 1993, Julia established Paradiso, which was the first Mediterranean inspired restaurant in Oakville. After selling Paradiso, Julia has developed Ristorante Julia, which embodies her values that “one should never sacrifice taste for nutrition or nutrition for taste, one can have it all”. Julia’s features a blend of Italian and Latin cuisine called “Lataliano”. Her latest restaurant venture in North Oakville is Ritorno, which is a return to Julia’s Italian roots. Ritorno invites guests to bring photos of their mothers and grandmothers to place on the Nonna Wall, in celebration of these remarkable women.
Julia’s most passionate undertaking is her not-for-profit initiative, HealthyFam. In 2009, with founding partner Longo’s, Julia created The Kids Culinary Community, a hands-on program dedicated to empowering children through the knowledge of food. In 2013, she launched HealthyFam, which includes the Kids Culinary Community, the Family Culinary Community and the Seniors Culinary Community. HealthyFam helps children, families and seniors build a foundation for healthy living. Julia received the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal, in recognition of her commitment to healthy living in Canada.
Julia is an active board member of the Oakville Chamber of Commerce. She was elected Chair for 2012-2013 year.
Julia’s cooking show, “Return to the Table with Julia” on TV Cogeco is in its fourth season. The show features interesting guests who share their stories as they prepare a meal.
Julia’s monthly editorial feature with Metroland Media focuses on a healthy relationship with food, with recipes that are nutritious and delicious.
See you around the dinner table.