This is Why Kensington Market is the best spot for any Toronto Foodie
I love food. Although it is a life or death necessity, not everyone could be considered a foodie. With this adoration for unique recipes and fusions of flavour I seek out interesting restaurants, creative chefs, and ultimately sublime dishes prepared to utterly blow my mind, and inevitably my diet. Trying to kick my backyard deficiency of not knowing many of the gems around the Six, I decided to check out the eclectic and incredible Kensington Market, a newly crowned heritage site in the heart of Toronto. And boy oh boy did it speak to my foodie heart. Here is a round up of some of the yummy highlights that would speak to any Toronto foodie visiting the city.
Kensington Market Delights for the Toronto Foodie
Wanda’s Pie in the Sky
So this bakery totally won me over. An eclectic atmosphere, this bakery brought a combination of nostalgia mixed with all things a sweet tooth would crave.
The name says it all – Wanda’s Pie in the sky. Here, enjoy a variety of homemade pies made on site in sweet and savoury, a variety of sandwiches, and other lunches, as well as an espresso bar ready to pair with no matter what your choice. When we visited the bakery cafe, we opted for the banana cream pie, the traditional cherry pie, and the ever appealing and attractive Dark Side of the Moon cupcake – a delicious nod to the iconic and epic British rock band Pink Floyd. What I loved about this rustic-style blast from the past eatery, was their disclaimer that all pies are made by hand in house so the odd cherry pit may have been missed and baked within the filling. Too awesome for words. This wins me over every time as opposed to the commercially baked desserts that lose the flavour in the freezer…
Besides serving pie and a variety of lunch items, Wanda’s Pie in the Sky also offers pre-made iced cookies in a variety of characters and shapes, as well as full size pies to bring home. I loved the various cookie designs available!
Book a Tour: Kensington Market Afternoon Food Tour
Little Pebbles Japanese Cafe
I stumbled upon this adorable cafe after parking the car! Hilariously their outer advertising with the word “COFFEE” written in huge font attracted me prior to entering the premises. When inside, I was charmed by the adorable atmosphere, ambiance, and smell of the incredible espresso brewing in the background. The coffee here is delicious, the lattes frothy and divine, and the desserts took traditional recipes and fusions of flavour from ordinary to sublime. We particularly loved the matcha tiramisu. Yes – Matcha. A Japanese twist to the traditional Italian recipe, the matcha tiramisu was a delightfully fresh and light treat with my morning coffee. And it came in a bento box. I mean, can you see CUTE any louder!?
Hibiscus Vegan Cafe
Although I’m not a vegan, I do LOVE eating vegan dishes as I feel refreshed afterward. Could be some weird quirk in my system, but honestly a quinoa and grain heavy meal actually gives me hidden energy. This is what happened at Hibiscus Cafe. After indulging and stuffing my face with pie and tiramisu, I wanted a healthy lunch to combine with my miles of walking to burn off the self-loathing I was doing for eating like a glutton. And let me tell you, it was one of the MOST AMAZING cafes I have enjoyed in my home city of Toronto. Bring your inner Toronto foodie out of the closet and have a meal at this little gem in the heart of Kensington Market. Not only is it healthy, it is sustainable, Local, and absolutely delicious. And the presentation is top notch as well…
The Vegan Crepes at Hibiscus – Perfect for the Toronto Foodie!
Hubby ordered a savoury crepe. OMG the presentation! It is brought to you on a plate resembling a fan with nuts, fruit, and curried puree of sorts. The end verdict was this crepe was ultimately satisfying, healthy, and sublime to the palate. Not to mention a sight for sore eyes…
Yes, you read that correctly – 42 ingredients!! My mind was blown at reading this on the menu. And it was an incredible salad. I loved every bite and every ingredient. For the complete list, the servers will advise in case you have any type of allergy. Some of the amazing ingredients to this salad that made it pop for me was of course the quinoa, the lentils, the cilantro, and broccoli. The glass noodles were also delightful sitting on top of the already jam-packed nutrient concoction.
The menu also has other gems should you wish to add to your lunch – vegan wine and beer, incredible mimosas, other vegan crepes, and vegan ice cream.
Eative Film Cafe
So this one caught me completely by surprise. I think it had something to do with their sign advising of soft-serve ice cream wrapped in 24 carat gold…YES 24 carat GOLD. I had recently seen a video on my social pages of a restaurant in New York offering gold covered chicken wings…eating gold must be a thing. So of course, for the sake of this round-up and my Toronto foodie inclinations, I splurged and shared a cone with hubby. To be honest, the novelty of this ice cream is really all it has. The taste is no different from a regular soft-serve vanilla ice cream cone. BUT it was a great and fun thing to enjoy in the summer weather!
Considering the chicken wings came with a hefty price tag of $1000 USD per serving, I felt the $14 for the ice cream, wasn’t too bad. But if I were to get soft-serve on a regular basis, I would never pay such a steep amount for what it is. Nevertheless, if you are a true Toronto Foodie who likes to experience unique dishes and gastronomic creations, than this one should be on your must-eat bucket list.
We were so stuffed at this stage from eating so much in Kensington Market, but felt we needed one last coffee before departing this funky heritage site of Toronto. I had just spent an hour in a vintage clothing shop. Seriously nostalgic friends, it is a gold mine of vintage circa 1950s-1970s dresses. My vintage designer soul was super happy. Anyway, right beside it is this adorable Swedish inspired cafe that promotes time spent with family and friends. Coffee, espresso drinks, pastries, and lunches are on tap here, but not WIFI on Saturdays! Why? Well, Fika is an expression in Sweden meaning to have a break, usually coffee break with family or friends. So with this sentiment, WIFI couldn’t possibly be added to the mix. During the week they plug back in, but for now, enjoy the atmosphere, the food and beverage, and of course, the special moments with your family and friends. Plus, the coffees are incredible. We were too full to enjoy any of the food, but I did nab some photos for you to be inspired to give them a whirl.
The Ziggy Stardust Egg
As we were exploring the eclectic and funky Kensington Market, practically full to the brim I must add, we passed a rather interesting and out of this world (literally) Chocolate shop. The confection was crafted in a very interesting astronomy-style with truffles resembling planets, mixed with abstract art. What I truly found intriguing was the Ziggy Stardust Egg. A nod of course to the brilliant and talented late David Bowie, this $50 artistic chocolate pinata was loaded with inner goodies upon breaking the seal. I had read about these guys being the signature dessert at a restaurant on Ossington street in Toronto – La Banane, so it was fascinating to stumble upon its home in the city. The truffles are quite satisfying here if you cannot afford the Ziggy Stardust egg or simply just want a taste.
So there you have our round-up of 6 amazing stops in Kensington Market for the ultimate Toronto foodie. Which would you like to try?
Some of these restaurants landed on our Heavenly Centenary Foodie Bucket list! Follow along and tick off the experiences you have had too!
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