Markets are to be discovered in this grid of a town. We took a walk along College Street just west of Yonge in search of Kensington Market. Hidden in the little streets that so starkly contrast with Spadina and Dundas, you need to know where it is to be able to find it. The bicycle chain inspired sign that spells out Kensington is an obvious clue, which we noticed on our way out.
Before we stumbled onto Augusta, we got sidetracked by some incredible açaí at Jungle Juice. I discovered this miraculous frozen fruit in Bahia, Brazil (stay tuned for our Brazil airports!) and was impressed at how well they got it at this coffee shop, as the fruits have to be imported. It is so difficult to describe how tasty it is, you must try it.
In Kensington, we found everything from almond flour at Casa Açoreana to cheese shops to great cappuccinos at Jimmy’s Coffee. Come on sundays to stock up on fruits and veggies for the week and then look through all kinds of attire, from Indian to Thai to tie-dye. We refuelled at Wanda’s Pie in Sky, a vegetarian restaurant that will more than satisfy your sweet tooth.
The next market that you can’t miss is St-Lawrence Market, just east of the Union Station on Front Street. A string of cafés and a cute little park later, we found ourselves at the doors of this busy, packed, Saturday affair. Meats, cheese, bread, pizza, sandwiches, pastries, kitchen tools, fresh produce, you name it, it’s there.
And it’s lovely, although you need to love chaos. Head there early, and then drop in for a neighbourhood brunch at Le Petit Déjeuner.
Shopping is not hard to find – the Eaton Centre is your best bet for efficiency, although Queen Street East and West are dotted with all kinds of pieces.
Start the evening off with a sassy patio experience at Pilot. For dinner there are hundreds and hundreds of spots – notable mentions go to Golden Thai for some excellent Pad thai (and not so excellent cocktails, but that’s not why you’re there). Excellent italian can be found in the Financial District – Osteria Ciceri e Tria for a cozy feel and Terroni for a grand Friday evening to kick start your night on the town. After we concluded our nocturnal stumble from bar to dance spot, we made it out west, where we parked ourselves in the Poutini line-up – and the gravy just wasn’t hot enough…the pulled-pork variety ain’t bad though.
The next morning, or evening rather, explore the Distillery District, for some fine food shops and a beer (or two).
That’s a wrap, TO.
Jungle Juice, 370 College St
Casa Açoreana, 235 Augusta Ave
Jimmy’s Coffee, 107 Portland St
Wanda’s Pie in the Sky, 287 Augusta Ave
St Lawrence Market, 95 Front St E
Le Petit Déjeuner, 191 King St E
Eaton Centre, Yonge and Dundas
Pilot, 22 Cumberland St
Golden Thai, 105 Church St
Osteria Ciceri e Tria, 106 Victoria St
Terroni, 57 Adelaide St E
Poutini’s House of Poutine, 1112 Queen St W
Distillery District, Mill & Parliament