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4 Bites of Toronto’s St. Lawrence Market

4 Bites of Toronto’s St. Lawrence Market


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For more than 200 years, the St. Lawrence Market has been at the heart of Toronto’s food culture. It is a gathering place for food vendors and artisans alike that is split into two levels. Not only is it considered to be one of Toronto’s culinary hot spots, but it's also one of the best food markets in the world.

If you have the opportunity to visit the next time that you’re in town, but sure to check out these vendors for a quintessential Toronto experience:

Carousel Bakery
One of the market’s landmark vendors, Carousel Bakery is known as the birthplace of the Canadian Peameal Bacon sandwich. The bakery also serves a variety of sandwiches and wraps (including chicken and veal Parmesan, sausage, steak, and vegetarian) on a selection of more than 300 types of international breads.

Buster’s Sea Cove
Another institution at the market, Buster’s is famous for its fish and chips, fish sandwiches, curly fries, and homemade slaw. They also operate a popular food truck in addition to their market location that offers a similar, yet still unique, sandwich menu. A favorite sandwich at both spots is the Maine-style lobster roll.

Scheffler’s Deli & Cheese
Scheffler’s Deli & Cheese has been at the St. Lawrence Market for more than five decades. In addition to their cheeses, they’re known for offering a wide selection of antipasti and finger foods including stuffed peppers, tomatoes, grape leaves, roast garlic buds, fresh-made pesto, dips, salads, and olives. According to their vendor page, they also have "the largest selection of prosciutto in the city" — a must-try for meat lovers.

Alice Boychn
This bakery has been a vendor at the market since 1926! As you might expect, they offer a variety of homemade pies (a customer favorite), tarts, and jams among other baked goods that are made from ingredients from local growers. They also serve vegan, egg-free, dairy-free, and gluten free options.


Tag: st lawrence market

Buying fresh meat at the north building of St. Lawrence Market, early 1970s. Photo by F. Ellis Wiley. City of Toronto Archives, Fonds 124, File 12, Item 33.

Five o’ clock on a Saturday morning and one small corner of the city is alive with the sound of friendly chatter, the smell of smoked hams and the colo[u]rs of the harvest. A steadily increasing trickle of shoppers emerges from the still-dark morning for the first pick of lettuces so fresh the dew still drips from them and cabbages so clean they shine.

Though the smell is more grilled sausage than ham and some of the lettuce may be shipped in from faraway destinations, the atmosphere evoked by this description of St. Lawrence Market from a 1976 Toronto Star profile still rings true. At the time those words were written, the market neared the end of a decade of rehabilitation that reflected changes in attitude towards historic properties in the city. The north side saw the old knock-it-down attitude at play, while the south was spared a date with a wrecking ball in favour of renovation. Otherwise, you might have enjoyed a Saturday morning mustard sample or peameal bacon sandwich in a building that lacked more than 150 years of history.

Parking lot next to north building of St. Lawrence Market (with St. Lawrence Hall in the background), early 1970s. Photo by F. Ellis Wiley. City of Toronto Archives, Fonds 124, File 12, Item 31.

Weak historical architecture regulations and grand plans for a massive arts-related complex (which eventually shrank to today’s St. Lawrence Centre for the Arts) led one historic building after another to arrange dates with demolition crews around the time the old north building of St. Lawrence Market met its demise in 1968. This was fine by some of its tenants, who felt the building had not stood the test of time as well as its older sibling on the opposite side of Front Street. As the Telegram noted, “gone was the dirt and the dust. Gone was the roof which sometimes leaked. The cold and the gloom, the shabby walls and uneven floors had departed. Instead there is brightness under-floor heating and colo[u]r everywhere. The farmers have never had it so good.”

Cheese vendor at north building of St. Lawrence Market, early 1970s. Photo by F. Ellis Wiley. City of Toronto Archives, Fonds 124, File 12, Item 1.

Completed in the fall of 1968, the new north market was officially opened with an evening of square dancing in February 1969. Initial reviews were mixed—regular shoppers like Globe and Mail columnist Bruce West were grateful for the improved amenities, even if “some old hands…will miss the occasional whiff of kerosene heaters which used to drift out from behind the baskets of potatoes or arrays of pigs’ heads.” As time passed, West found the space too sterile—in a column two years after the building was finished, he expressed hope that “some day in the future, no doubt—if there are still farms and still farmers who care to get up hours before dawn to take their produce to town on Saturday mornings—the present St. Lawrence Market may get seedy enough and littered enough to have developed a mellow character of its own.”

Flowers for sale at the north building of St. Lawrence Market, early 1970s. Photo by F. Ellis Wiley. City of Toronto Archives, Fonds 124, File 12, Item 11.

Architecture and design critics, like the Star’s Harvey Cowan, were unimpressed. “It is the walls of the market space,” Cowan noted, “that reveal the frustrating lack of empathy for the character of a market place. Most walls are concrete block, painted a ghastly salmon colo[u]r that is reminiscent of basement walls in a speculative apartment building.” Cowan summed up the complex as “mundane” and “a most disappointing building” that lacked a sense of history or the “finesse and organization” offered by supermarkets of the era.

With the north side taken care of, developers and preservationists turned their eyes toward the south market. When city planners suggested in 1971 that the one-time city hall could be demolished and the tenants moved elsewhere in a scheme that also included a plan to build a new Massey Hall next to the north market, a citizens’ committee formed to stand against any hint of demolition. The city backed off and turned to the federal and provincial governments for assistance to renovate the south market.

Nick’s Meat, south building of St. Lawrence Market, sometime between 1971 and 1989. Photo by F. Ellis Wiley. City of Toronto Archives, Fonds 124, File 12, Item 42.

For over two years, workers cleaned the exterior and ripped up the ceilings, floors, and walls. At times half of the building was closed off while business carried on in the rest of the facility. The renovations created more space for vendors, who could take advantage of new refrigerated glass display cases and fluorescent lighting. Reaction was favourable when the building officially reopened in June 1977, though some veteran vendors lamented the loss of certain grittier aspects. As butcher Nick Smolka told the Star, the market was “clean and better than ever.”

I think the renovations have been the best thing for the market, the city and the public. You will find that the meat will be protected behind showcases and it will keep longer and look better than when people could handle it all day long. What we have now is a modern market. I don’t know about this cleanliness, though. I think people want to look at the meat closely and they want to handle it. What’s wrong with that? Nobody ever got poisoned from it.

Scouting out vegetables at St. Lawrence Market, sometime between 1971 and 1989. Photo by F. Ellis Wiley. City of Toronto Archives, Fonds 124, File 12, Item 38.

Two more years passed before one of the last elements of the renovations was unveiled to the public. The second floor of the old city hall section of the market proved suitable for a proposed gallery to show off the city’s art and archival collections. It was appropriate that the first exhibition at the Market Gallery after it officially opened in March 1979 featured paintings and sketches by John Howard, who had proposed the first set of renovations to the building when it served as Toronto’s city hall in the 1850s. It also seemed appropriate that the opening ceremony was presided over by Mayor John Sewell, who had been one of leaders in the preservation effort at the start of the decade.

The surroundings changed, but one element remained a key part of the St. Lawrence Market experience. As Bruce West described while the new north building was under construction, “nowhere…will you see such an interesting cross-section of the Toronto populace. Observing the patrons of the market is almost as interesting as examining the ware and I hope this institution continues for a long time because it has a lot of soul in it.”

Sources: the June 14, 1968, February 17, 1969, November 23, 1970 and September 15, 1971 editions of the Globe and Mail, the February 1, 1969 edition of the Telegram and the February 15, 1969, January 18, 1971, October 11, 1976, June 3, 1977, and March 3, 1979 editions of the Toronto Star.


The Best Food Market in the World - Toronto's St. Lawrence Market

Toronto is widely known for its diverse roots, including its landmarks, its people and food. Speaking of famous landmarks, St. Lawrence Market is a vi tal piece of Toronto history known for tasty food, great shops selling artisan goods and novelty items and has been a popular spot to spend the day for locals and tourists. The story of the market is based on the people who have work ed diligently to create authentic food that delivers to its consumers. With the people’s extreme passion for food, St. Lawrence Market has thrived for the past 208 years and was even named the best food market in the world by National Geographic in 2012.

During COVID-19, St. Lawrence Market has adjusted their hours and with the current lockdown in Toronto, they are recommending its customers to shop alone or with only one person. It has been an adjustment because the Market thrives on traffic and big social events for city-goers and tourists, but they are making due with the COVID guidelines provided by the City of Toronto. Though we are in the midst of a global pandemic , it’s safe to say that St. Lawrence Market is even more vital now in the lives of Torontonians.

Sandra’s Family History in the Business

Located at 93 Front St E, Toronto , Scheffler’s Deli and Cheese was the first business in St. Lawrence Market to incorporate a line of delicious finger foods and antipastos (since 1982). “We offer a wide variety of dairy products and cold cuts, including cheese, spice stuffed peppers, thai chili peppers tomatoes, grape leaves, roast garlic buds, fresh-made pesto, dips, salads, olives, and many more!” Do you love prosciuttos? Scheffler’s has the largest selection in the city and the freshest truffles from France and Italy. Not to mention condiments and patés from various countries.

Sandra Gounalakis, alongside her husband Odysseas and children Katerina, Angela & Antoni decided to open their own business in hopes of gathering the largest options of local and speciality food. Odysseas came to Toronto from Greece in 1982 and studied at York University. He found a part-time job at St. Lawrence Market and he ended up meeting his future wife Sandra. After many tireless years working at the Market, Odysseas and Sandra, with the help of their children, opened their own business and purchased Scheffler’s Deli in 1992. “We embrace the competition between vendors, the community engagement of the Market and our love for food.”

Business During COVID-19

As we can all imagine, this pandemic has affected businesses and the way they are operating . From hours and staff cuts, to declining sales, Sandra remains optimistic. “We have had to change our hours due to Covid. We are now 5 days a week, Tuesday to Friday from 9 a.m to 5 p.m. and Saturday from 5 a.m to 4 p.m” (closed Sunday and Monday).“I am hoping that after the pandemic and when things get back to normal, we can do way more demos with more products. It’s been a rushed process right now due to COVID, but with more time, we can bring in more traction towards newer products.” Although it’s been an adjustment with the pandemic, Scheffler’s Deli and Cheese is doing just fine.

Ponesse Foods - St. Lawrence Market

Ponesse Foods is located at St. Lawrence Market and has been a great staple for fresh fruits and vegetables since 1900. Ponesse was the first owners’ name and was one of the first produce vendors at the Market. The current owner, Mario Aricci, started working there at the tiny age of 7 years. Fast forward to 1985, Mario took over the business alongside his sons and is proud to call it a family business (including his wife and in-laws). He went from sweeping and keeping the produce stocked and clean, to eventually being in a management role and having his sons learn the business. Ponesse Foods is loved by many because of its top quality produce (front of the building). It is locally imported and the produce includes: mushrooms, tropical fruits, grapes, Italian chestnuts and many more! A regular favourite is their chocolate-dipped fresh strawberries and it is readily available in the Market. At The JOCO Foods Company, they receive their fresh and quality produce from Ponesse and it has not disappointed! Ponesse Foods are now stocking their Original Jaew Chili Spread, Jaew XHOT Spread and their specialty Jaew Truffle Spread. Look out for Marco and their friendly staff who can help with all your produce needs.

Teaming up with The JOCO Foods Company

Sandra and her family decided to stock The JOCO Foods Company’s sauces and it has been an instant attraction with customers! “It looks and tastes delicious. We always do demos on new products and with anything that relates to cold cuts and things of that nature.” The JAEW Chili Spreads work extremely well with crackers and the items Scheffler’s sells, so it was a win-win. “It is a little bit pricey at first glance and people may wonder why, but once you taste the JAEW sauces, you will know why it is that way.” Sandra goes on to say that the JAEW Chili Spread and the other sauces have amazing taste and can be incorporated into a variety of dishes. The customer will be leaving having a great experience and wanting more! “It’s been a hit with customers so far!” When Scheffler’s can create more demos with newer products without the burden of COVID looming, they can bring in more traction to those products and subsequently their business.

What we can learn from Sandra and her family and from Mario and his family is that once you have a dream, you can achieve it by working hard and never giving it up. Although that’s something people say all the time, it’s very much true. It’s one thing to have a passion for something and it’s another to actually want to achieve something with that passion. Odysseas and Sandra fell in love the Market environment and food culture, so did Mario and his wife. With that love, both families have created a business that is striving and that will be passed down to their children (with many milestones accumulated). St. Lawrence Market has many great vendors, but it’s the people that make it such a staple for the city. Especially during a pandemic, that human connection is invaluable.

If you have yet to visit Scheffler’s Delicatessen & Cheese and Ponesse Foods at St. Lawrence Market, what are you waiting for? They are open 5 days a week (hours changed due to COVID) and if you have any questions, you can email them through their respective websites. And, if you want to try something sweet, spicy, and addictive, look no further than The JOCO Foods Company’s JAEW Chili Spreads ! Get it at these St. Lawrence Market retailers now while you can!


Toronto’s St. Lawrence Market could finally start opening on Sundays

Joe Haskett can’t count the number of Sundays he’s swung by St. Lawrence Market for a meal only to find the historic red-brick building closed.

“Our schedules are pretty hectic Monday through Friday and that often bleeds into Saturday. So Sunday is usually the only day to take time to go out,” said Haskett, sitting at a table on the market’s bottom floor on a bustling Saturday afternoon.

“It just feels right for it to be open on Sundays.”

It’s a sentiment the city says it often hears from customers of Toronto’s St. Lawrence Market, and it is considering extending of operating hours for the storied south building.

The city says there is substantial public appetite for “optimized hours” at the market, home to butchers, spice shops, restaurants and dozens of other vendors.

A public consultation over possible changes is scheduled for Wednesday , from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m., at the temporary market at the corner of Market Street and the Esplanade.

The south market currently operates five days a week. It’s open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Fridays and 5 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturdays.

“In the past number of years the St. Lawrence Market neighbourhood has grown as a result of development and food purchasing habits are evolving as the lifestyles of Toronto residents and visitors are changing,” a spokesperson from the city-owned St. Lawrence Market Complex said in a statement.

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“The market is often regarded as an anchor in the market neighbourhood and is always looking for ways to positively contribute to the community and support residents.”

If there is a change in hours or days opened, it could come into effect by late fall at the earliest, a city spokesperson said.

The possibility of change is being met with mixed feelings by the market’s merchants, some of whom have been working their shops for decades.

“I work 53 hours a week. Reorganizing those 53 hours, I’m pretty much OK with. I have mixed feelings on working Sunday because that is my family day, my social day,” said Sara Spector, owner and operator of Everyday Gourmet Coffee Roasters.

Spector is also the president of the market’s tenant association. Most of the vendors inside the market are small family businesses, she said, and adding another day isn’t as simple as scheduling another shift or two.

“I think a lot of people forget about the human aspect of it,” she said.

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“We’re not Loblaws. We’re 64 families, basically, and we get two days off like everybody else. That’s the way it’s been and I think a lot of us feel like, ‘Why do I have to give that up?’ ”

Spector said there is still too much unknown about the city’s plans.

“What are we looking at? Are we looking at Sunday in February or Sunday in July. Those are two different things,” she said.

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“I think there is a lot that goes into reorganizing the hours of the market, and it needs to be done in a very meticulous, thoughtful way.”

For some vendors, opening the doors on Sundays is a sound business move.

Randy Simon, one of the managers at Mike’s Fish Market, said there’s no logic in closing the doors of a large-scale downtown shopping destination on Sunday.

“All other stores are open on Sundays, why not us?” he questioned.

“This is a very special place in the city. Rich, medium, poor, everyone comes here and gets what they need. That’s how it should be.”

A few aisles from his stand, George Vasiliades agrees it’s about time the city looked into the possibility of opening on Sundays. His logic: Most people go to work throughout the week, and weekends are the only times they get to go shopping.

“Especially in the summer, there’s a lot of tourists who come to Toronto and want to check out the market on Sundays,” said Vasiliades, a manager at the St. Lawrence Fish Market.

“Just don’t rush the process. Make sure the public knows it’s happening, and give us enough time to prepare with additional staff and everything.”

Over the cheese counter at Alex Farm Products, a manager who would only identify as Socrates said the idea of opening the market on Sundays is simply a “waste of time.”

In addition to the area being “practically deserted” on Sundays, he said it is the time when people relax and stay home with their families, sipping wine and preparing for the week ahead.

“Does city hall open on Sunday?” he retorted. “If it’s too expensive for banks to be open on Sundays, it must be equally expensive for cheese vendors, too.”

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St. Lawrence Market Sandwich

This breaded zucchini-eggplant sandwich is inspired by a Saturday morning favourite at Carousel Bakery in Toronto's St. Lawrence Market.

Ingredients

  • 2 zucchinis (1 lb/500 g)
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup dry breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 12 slices (1/4 inch/5 mm thick) eggplant
  • 1 focaccia bread (4)
  • 1 panini bun (4)
  • 1/2 cup sliced roasted red pepper
  • 4 slices provolone cheese
  • 4 slices mozzarella cheese

Nutritional facts <b>Per serving:</b> about

  • Sodium 1423 mg
  • Protein 21 g
  • Calories 593.0
  • Total fat 19 g
  • Cholesterol 105 mg
  • Saturated fat 5 g
  • Total carbohydrate 86 g
  • Iron 52.0
  • Folate 51.0
  • Calcium 21.0
  • Vitamin A 20.0
  • Vitamin C 75.0

Method

Slice zucchini lengthwise into 1/4-inch (5 mm) thick slices set aside.

Pour flour into shallow dish. In second shallow dish, whisk eggs. In third shallow dish, combine bread crumbs, salt, pepper and oregano.

Dip zucchini and eggplant into flour, turning to coat shake off excess. Dip into egg mixture, turning to coat and letting excess drip back into dish. Press into bread crumb mixture to coat both sides. Place on waxed paper?lined rimmed baking sheet. (Make-ahead: Cover and refrigerate for up to 2 hours.)

Brush oil over 2 rimmed baking sheets. Arrange vegetables in single layer on sheets bake in top and bottom thirds of 450°F (230°C) oven, turning vegetables and rotating and switching pans halfway through, until golden, about 15 minutes.

Cut focaccia in half horizontally. Layer zucchini, eggplant, red pepper and cheese on bottom halves sandwich with top halves. Cut into quarters. Place on rimmed baking sheet bake in 450°F (230°C) oven until cheese is melted, about 5 minutes.


Sofia Goes to.. The St. Lawrence Market

You can find everything you need to make gourmet meals for the week at the St. Lawrence Market. The best part is that you’ll have countless options to choose from for each category: meat, seafood, cheese, fresh produce, grains, desserts, and coffee. For some, that can be over-whelming. Especially coupled with the crowds the market attracts. That’s where I come in, let me show you some of the St Lawrence stand-outs!

I like to start my visit by getting a delicious drink from Everyday Gourmet Coffee Roasters. Iced lattes are my preference but they don’t serve them year-round, so I gave the cortado a chance. It was bold and delightfully smooth.

They offer a wide-selection of coffees, from all-around the world, roasted daily on site. My favourite, the Hawaiian Kona, claims to be one of the “sweetest and smoothest” coffees in the world.

It lives up to its description, and tastes amazing iced. With chocolate and nutty notes, it’ll quickly become a household favourite. It’s the kind of coffee you can look forward to savouring each morning! In my case, along-side my loud toddler side-kick.

Now while you’re still on the lower floor, I recommend checking out Caviar Direct. If you like smoked salmon prepare to taste the best of the best.

Warning: After experiencing Caviar Direct, other smoked salmon will only fall short. Caviar Direct’s salmon is full of flavour and expertly prepared!

Sourced from the Bay of Fundy, cured and cold-smoked, all three of their artisanal smoked salmons are delicious, but my favourite is the medium smoked “New York Style” variety. They also make two versions of hot-smoked salmon candy. A tougher (and sweeter) salmon jerky, which I love, and a meatier, softer yet subtly sweet salmon candy my husband prefers.

The next stop is truly a hidden gem. Tucked away in the back corner of the lower level is your new favourite spot for all types of pepperettes and charcuterie, Dnister Ukrainian Store.

Their turkey pepperettes come in mild and hot and pack a bold flavour punch! I’m not usually a fan of landjager but Dnister’s is so tasty I make an exception. They also carry many Ukrainian products and serve traditional Ukrainian prepared food like cabbage rolls and perogies.

Time to head upstairs and try Montreal style bagels from Carousel Bakery. Carousel Bakery is famous for their Peameal Bacon Sandwich. This time, I got mini bagels as a snack and larger bagels to make some epic sandwiches at home.

It was Elowyn’s first time trying Montreal style bagels and let’s just say this #foodieintraining learned a valuable lesson: if Montreal style bagels are an option, other bagels shouldn’t even be in the running! Check out the sandwiches I made when we got home using bagels from Carousel Bakery and smoked salmon from Caviar Direct.

Alright, now as you know, I love cooking various types of meat. I tried to narrow it down as much as I could but I’m going to mention three stops that together should fulfill all of your meat needs. Remember that’s the beauty of the St. Lawrence Market, you don’t have to choose just one butcher!

For grass-fed Ontario lamb your best bet for price and quality is Upper Cut Meats. They also carry a large selection of grass-fed steak and we’ve been very happy with all of the products we’ve tried to date. Price wise, they fall somewhere in the middle compared to all of the butchers in the St. Lawrence but their quality is the closest to the high-end butcher shops with a mid-range price tag.

Now what if you want high-quality grass-fed meats but often feel rushed during the week and value pre-seasoned quick meal options. Witteveen Meats is your best bet!

They have countless delicious options to satisfy your cravings I love that you can mix-and-match from their marinated skewer selection. Their marinated Korean spare-ribs (pictured above) and slow-roasted side bacon are my favourites.

Having foodies over for dinner? Want to serve something even they’ve never tried before? Toronto’s number one destination for game-meat Whitehouse Meats has everything from kangaroo to camel and even crocodile. Their friendly staff will be happy to guide you through cooking instructions after they help you choose the game-meat you’re most likely to enjoy. Many game-meats are very lean and high in protein. The pheasant makes a tasty slider!

I always like having olives and cheese on hand they make a great snack and if guests stop by unexpectedly I can quickly put together a little platter. Olympic Cheese Mart has high-quality products, great prices and friendly staff. Try their Greek Kefalotyri and you’ll be hooked!

Kozlik’s Canadian Mustard is my final recommended stop at the St Lawrence. They have over 36 varieties of mustard. How will you choose? They offer samples, and you can try as many as you like! I love their Amazing Maple, Lime and Honey, and Balsamic Fig and Date mustards. They’re the perfect compliment to any charcuterie platter, and they make great additions to marinades!

That concludes today’s tour of the St. Lawrence South Market! Were you able to spot me and Elowyn on the second floor? I’m camouflaging with my mint green hoodie. I’ll be doing a post on the North Market when warmer weather hits. I love strolling the North Market in the summer when all of the outdoor vendors are set-up and there’s an abundance of fresh flowers lining their stalls. Stay tuned, the North Market has some incredible vendors with very unique products!

What are your favourite spots in the St. Lawrence Market? What hidden gems have I missed? I love discovering new awesome products each time I go (=


A good place to start food-touring downtown Toronto, is the &ldquofood oracle&rdquo of St. Lawrence (Food) Market.

Highly praised for their &ldquopeameal bacon&rdquo, St. Lawrence Market really counts as a #1 food market choice in town &ndash and righteously so. It sticks out like a delicious little rectangular h(e)aven in the midst of otherwise impersonally high, sky-soaring buildings. We chose &ldquoThe Culinary Adventure Co.&rdquo to guide & &ldquostory-tell&rdquo us around the market, and did well in doing so: Our guide Ian is commonly referred to as &ldquothe St. Lawrence Market guy&rdquo and really knows the many little backstories to one of Toronto&rsquos most popular foodie attractions. Besides, him and his company offer a Food Tour called &ldquoVIP Early Access Tour of St. Lawrence Market&rdquo, starting at 8.30 a.m. It thus allows you a much calmer, more intimate tasting tour around the market ahead of most of the tourist crowds that follow. A piece of advice: Don&rsquot drive there in the early morning hours. Walk and / or take public transport to the market: We know from personal experience, that Toronto traffic can be very crazy should you attempt to use your own vehicle!

Foodies fare (very) well in a place as multicultural, multi-faceted and multi-culinary as Toronto: Early morning access to downtown Toronto&rsquos St. Lawrence Market &hellip

&hellip where we are immediately greeted to the market&rsquos famous &ldquopea meal bacon&rdquo sandwich, a type of back bacon made from lean boneless pork loin and rolled in cornmeal.

Lucky us: Ian knows where to take us, what food to get and which story to tell &hellip

&hellip around a market where 78 out of all 80 local vendors are family-owned and operated, making it one of the most family-business focused in the entire city.

And quite unusual and experimental at that: Mustard early morning tasting it is! Or did you know that 90% of all mustard grains worldwide were grown in (and exported from) Canada?

Still lingering on my mouth: The taste of this maple-cured, juicy salmon bite &hellip

&hellip and as the tour slowly winds down, we gather for a final few (chocolate) bites in the &ldquobowels&rdquo of the market, downstairs where interesting Street Art Graffiti abides . Thank you for such an interesting tour, dear Ian!


St. Lawrence Market’s operating hours under the pilot project (effective March 15, 2020):

Open – Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Saturdays from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Sundays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Closed – Mondays

Some holiday dates will vary during the pilot project. 2020 holiday hours will be posted on stlawrencemarket.com by the end of January. The St. Lawrence Market Saturday Farmers Market will continue to operate with existing hours every Saturday year-round from 5 a.m. to 3 p.m.

“The St. Lawrence Market is one of the most beloved destinations for Torontonians and visitors, offering speciality items alongside competitively priced fresh and prepared food products with unmatched customer service,” says Councillor Kristyn Wong-Tam (Ward 13 Toronto Centre). The revised hours will let the St. Lawrence community take full advantage of everything the market has to offer.”


Bits + Bites

An Upper James establishment that boasts of its veal-sandwich prowess right on its sign may just be on to something. Paninoteca has made it to the finals of "Ontario's Best Veal Sandwich," a contest sponsored by the Veal Farmers of Ontario &mdash a.k.a. the "Veal Appeal." Finals will take place at Toronto's St. Lawrence Market Kitchen on June 23. The contest is hosted by John Catucci of "You Gotta Eat Here" and will feature Hamiltonian Tracy Luker as a judge. Luker won her spot on the panel and a hotel for the night through an online contest. That's gotta veal good!

The bacon that love fried

What better way to say, "I love you, Dad" than with a tasting flight of bacon (unless, of course, dad is a vegetarian). But for meat-eating dads, Merit Brewing has Father's Day covered. The aforementioned flight features bacon three ways with accompaniments for $15, "all the sausage" (six, if you're counting) with fries and sides for $59 and a four-pack of beer with four sausages to take home for $34.50. There will also be brewery tours every hour between noon and 6 p.m. Tour spots can be reserved online.

Bayou BBQ at the 'Brook

Barbecue, bands, beer, bourbon and boiled seafood will be on offer at a Blue Dinghy pop-up party at Burlington's Nickel Brook Brewing Company on June 23. Organized by Topowe Events, it promises "southern smoke, seafood boils, lively bands, joyousness and drinks a-flowing for this lively foodie event." That's not to say all drinks are included in the $120 ticket price, but four sample-size ones are, according to Topowe, which will be joined by Barque Smokehouse to cook the evening's eats.

864 Drury Lane, Burlington

Correction: This story was updated June 18 to correct John Catucci's name.


How Little Jamaica Contributed To Toronto's Rich History

While the existence of Toronto's Little Jamaica may be relatively short, the historical significance of the area goes back a couple hundred years.

In this edition of Then&Now, Toronto Historian Morgan Cameron Ross takes a look back at that strip of land extending along Eglinton Avenue West from Allen Road to Keele Street.

The transformation of the Eglinton West area to what we know as Little Jamaica took place in the 1960s, when Jamaican migrants came to Toronto, eventually becoming a vibrant destination that Ross says musicians, including Bob Marley and Jimmy Cliff, spent time at.

But one of the significant changes this area would eventually undergo came in the form of years of construction resulting from work on the Eglinton Crosstown LRT, with additional changes anticipated as the project slowly moves closer to completion.

Not all is lost, however the historical significance of the area is closer to being protected as Toronto City Council voted last month on an initiative to determine if it should become a heritage conservation district.


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