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Danforth news - Von Donuts

Hmm. Can't really answer that really without eating them side by side. It's always fun and surprising to do that kind of tasting. And I probably have a higher tolerance for sugar than others thanks to my "dessert with every meal" husband. But I find VON the same in the pretty/artful/restrained visual way of Jelly -- not thick gobs of icing or sky-high toppings or gaudy concoctions (yet?). Nobody who ate them yesterday remarked on them being sickly sweet, so I'd lean towards saying no, but sweetness is so personal. And like I said, my fave was salt + pepper so I gravitate to savoury anyway. The only negative comment was that the bacon donut was probably best fresh from the oven b/c my friend didn't like cold bacon. I've eaten a lot of bacon donuts (including maple leaf gardens loblaws) and liked VON's the best.
((To be completist on my last answer: I also lined up at Beast once for Rachelle's donuts. Remember the apple fritter strongly. But not able to line up at a certain time on a certain day - actually not sure if they still do donuts))

Danforth news - Von Donuts

Short: yes, yes, yes. Long: I've eaten all (most?) local donuts. I liked Paulette's b/c I favour cake donuts, though not all flavours worked there (loved blueberry balsamic). Didn't love Glory Hole - they looked over-the-top but impact didn't match visual and there was often too much going on. I've eaten Jelly Modern in Calgary + here - VON is probably closest to them. What I do love about Jelly is the option for a small donut. It beats cutting big ones in 2 or 4 to share. I wanted to love the Donut Factory at Queen/Pape but only went once. I have kids so go to TimH a lot and did Krispy Kreme once in the last year. I grew up here (Y+Lawrence) on Dip n Sip and go nuts for a chocolate eclair or chocolate eclair donut (so hard to find - actually KK does a decent one - choclate iced kreme filled). I've even had the 7-Eleven donuts. So i lean to a filled yeast donut or a cake donut. I got to try five VON flavours + kebabs -- they were all solidly good tho kebabs in spice and sugar tasted just like sugar. I will slowly sample the whole line before picking1-2 faves. All of that said, I'm torn between not liking $$$ donuts (or cupckaes) and wanting to support a new local biz. "MY" danforth runs from Pape to Donland + we East Enders are grateful for all new food businesses as the street slowly fills out. The VON owners seem nice + the shop is lovely and my preliminary tasting was very positive. NOW, on to Xmas.

Danforth news - Von Donuts

I picked up a dozen on my way to work for my those of us working Xmas Eve Day. And I took the leftovers to Xmas Eve dinner @ my brother's house. They promise both yeast and cake donuts, though they only had the yeast ones when I was in (plus donut hole kabobs). I'd say they're restrained (not gimmicky) and good quality ingredients - Valrhona chocolate, Meyer lemon etc. My favourite was Caramel Salt N' Pepa - caramel dipped, Valrhona drizzle, flaked sea salt + crushed mixed peppercorns. I missed the kabob dipping sauce (or it wasn't available). Greek Town was pretty bang on with honey glaze, honey-rum drizzle + pistachios. They sell fancy loose-leaf teas. Didn't try the coffee. I'm a neighbour + I think they'll do well. $2.85/doughnut, no tax for 6 and up, and $29.95/dozen

Marvel Coffee. Co (Donlands TTC)

Pleased to see signs up for Marvel Coffee Co. a few steps north of Danforth on Donlands right beside Donlands TTC. Don't know why, but it intrigues me that they'd open so close to the subway and not on Danforth. Construction photo on their facebook page

Danforth news - Von Donuts

Sign in the window looking for bakers....

African spices?

Yes, it's a spice blend and yes in a pinch you can make your own. But it won't taste right. There is something magical about berbere, I believe. While you're at Desta or wherever you decide to shop, you can buy fresh injera to go with whatever dish you're making.

African spices?

I get mine at Desta Meat Market at Danforth/Jones. The other Ethiopian strip is Bloor from Ossington east for a few blocks. There must be an ethiopian grocer along there?

Wanted: nut free vegan birthday cake

I was crazy for the vegan coconut lime cake at LPK's culinary groove at queen/broadview. It closed, but they've been at various farmers markets. Not sure if they do custom orders or cakes or just small bites for the market.

But I've ordered cakes directly from Sweets from the Earth before - usually the spiced carrot cake (vegan and nut free)

Marshmallow Factory?

I live nearby and walk by a lot. Intense weird vibe for sure. Menu looks disgusting. It was "coming soon" for ages (a year maybe?). Now it's always empty. Don't know what it is, or why it's still there. My kids don't ask to go in. That said, I suppose I should go in once.

Kelseys...what to order?

I lived at Kelseys right after I graduated from university and got my first job out west (okay that was awhile ago) and I swore by the honey garlic chicken wings. About once every five years I get a craving and go back.

Where to get knives sharpened in Toronto

I've used Sharp My Knife which is a (newish) mobile knife sharpening service. Not sure how much you need to call them to your home, but you can go to Brickworks on Sat Sept 14 and catch them there:

The Smokehouse BBQ in Lethbridge

Well if you smoke your own chances are you will find this place lacking! I went for quick takeout lunch - caesar salad was terrible, the baked beans were too vinegary (threw them out) but the burnt ends were sublime.

Jul 12, 2013
GirlRancher in Prairie Provinces

The Smokehouse BBQ in Lethbridge

From Toronto, staying in southern Alberta for the summer. Spotted The Smokehouse BBQ + Bar (1104 Mayor Magrath Dr. S., 403-380-4880) in Lethbridge. Husband brought me takeout good brisket (half pound, $15) and A+ "burnt ends" (seasoned/smoked brisket ends for $7). He ate in, got a tour of the commercial smoker. His meat was served dry - with sauces on the side. We'll be back to try more: Brunswick Stew (rarely seen in Canada - I had it in North Carolina), poutines, smoked chicken, Mississippi Mud Pie etc.

Jul 03, 2013
GirlRancher in Prairie Provinces

Minuet Cafe - 925 Danforth Avenue

I, too, had a great experience with Minuet. I went in at 4pm Saturday (close to closing time and they're not open on Sunday). I asked for a cake and the owner sold it to me for $30 instead of $35. I ordered 3 slices and he gave me 6! He insisted I take home some bread. (This is mostly b/c he's about to close and isn't open Sunday.) He joked that he could make a cake of slices and I decided to "make a cake" out of two half cakes (chocolate and mocha) instead of buying the only full cake available (white). He lovingly reiced the cake, wrote a sweet 16 birthday message, shaved fresh chocolate on it and took special care to put curly ribbons on the box (attention to detail) etc. The cakes were light and fresh and very good (not stunning) and I'd definitely go again to support this lovely man.

Minuet Cafe - 925 Danforth Avenue

South side of the Danforth between Jones + Donlands (west of the 7-Eleven, east of Square Boy). Closed Sundays. Haven't had a chance to try it yet.

Belgian Pearl Sugar in Toronto?

I searched extensively a year ago and didn't find it - and couldn't get any mail order either. Closest i got was the Finnish version - Dan Sukker brand Parlsocker Crispy (Perlesukker Crispy). It was from Viking Foods on Railside Rd. off Eglinton Ave E: There is also Milbree-Viking in Newmarket.

Toronto restaurants for people with food restrictions

Grasslands is new (I haven't been) and vegan tapas. You'd have to check on the gluten-free. It got a good review from NOW Magazine (it's by the same guy who does Urban Herbivore recommended in this list as well):

Toronto restaurants for people with food restrictions

I'm allergic to shellfish and kimchee is usually made with fermented shrimp paste (less often with fish sauce). When I was at Banh Mi Boys last year, they had the kind with shrimp. Have they changed since then? I couldn't eat there b/c the kimchi drips into the other condiments in the condiment table (I looked closely)

Taste of the Food Terminal - May 25, 2013 - Ontario Food Terminal open house

Not sure about organic but there is a "farmers' market" area where the small Ontario farmers sell their produce. Then there's the area for the big wholesalers who sell a mix of local and imports. To me, this event is more about getting an inside look at a wholesale food hub that's closed to the public the rest of the year. If you get to buy something, that's a bonus. It's actually fitting that it's on the same weekend as Doors Open.

Ham Hocks - where did they go?

I had trouble recently finding these @ supermarkets. Got some berkshire hocks at St. Lawrence Market and spotted one (frozen) smoked hock at Fresh From the Farm on Donlands - though you can order from them. Both were expensive.

Longo's on Laird - now open

We've been planting everbearing strawberries for a few years now so the outdoor, Ontario crop extends into fall --- they started out in farmers' markets but there's enough of them now that you'll find them in some supermarkets (like this Longo's) and green grocers

ISO: farro

I found it at two small Italian shops on the Danforth -- Masellis (890) and Jerry's Supermarket (1398). Also Fiesta Farms.

Vegan bakery?....Anyone?

Another vote for Sweets from the Earth. Earlier this month I bought three cakes - carrot cake with vegan "cream cheese" icing, chocolate and a cheesecake -- all from Sobeys (Front St east of St Lawrence Market). You can also order direct from Sweets + pick up at their non-retail baking spot in the Junction. Or call + ask them where to get whole cakes near you. (I ordered a whole carrot cake a few years back before they were in stores). We had the cakes @ work and the non-vegans were shocked by how good they all were. The lactose-intolerants were especially interested.

Edmonton coffee/pupusas/dosas

Hello - am visiting Edmonton next week from deeply rural southern Alberta and need to get my fix of food + drinks that I loved while living in Toronto.

Where should I go for:

1. Coffee: meaning good espresso-based drinks. Taste of the coffee is more important than the atmosphere. Happy to grab + go something resembling the lattes from Caffe Artigiano in Calgary or Mercury Organic Espresso Bar in Toronto. (Possibly Carrot Community Arts Coffeehouse or Transend?)

2. Dosas: Craving a zippy paneer dosa or something similar. I've found references only to Savoy's South Indian Cafe.

3. Pupusas (Salvadoran).

4. Za'atar "Pizzas": Is Sunbake Pita Bakery as good as it sounds?

5. Ethiopian: Is Habesha the place to go?

Many thanks

Feb 20, 2009
GirlRancher in Prairie Provinces

Medicine Hat rec's?

Just remembered two more - Weenie is newish and just steps off the main street of downtown ( ). It's tiny and takeout and the dogs are pretty good - they also bring in MacKay's ice cream from cochrane (I had Saskatoon berry ice cream/possible called Alberta berry). Weenie's sister resto is 2 minutes away and is the Red Brick Diner at 635 3rd Street for burgers with "gourmet" toppings - I liked the vibe, but it's a tad overpriced. Gluttonous portion of fries. Lots of people doing the all-day breakfast. Can't find a website but the Medicine Hat News profiled it.

Nov 05, 2008
GirlRancher in Prairie Provinces

Medicine Hat rec's?

I"m new to Alberta but have had some decent luck in Medicine Hat. I've had creative homemade soups (beet soup with dilly sour cream) and salads (greens with watermelon and toasted pine nuts) at Zucchini Blossom (which has a few shelves of gourmet foodstuffs for sale). They do quiche and paninis. Low-key. Order at the counter and they bring to your table. The Brier Park Diner in the NW end has character - also sweet potato fries. There are 3 independently owned branches of Samir's Donair - I had a surprisingly good falafel here ( There are 3 vietnamese spots and at least one sushi place that I haven't tried yet and I eyeballed another spot called Cafe Caprice. Anyone else from the Hat able to weigh in?

Nov 05, 2008
GirlRancher in Prairie Provinces

Available Mexican/Latin American goodies in Calgary

Raidar, if you're still in Medicine Hat here are a few leads. I got ancho and guajillo chilies at Zucchini Blossom last week - they're not on the shelf but they do sell them. There is a Mexican Mennonite store in Bow Island that sells corn tortillas and a small array of Mexi dried goods. I've had some luck finding Herdez brand Mexican goods at - forgive me - Walmart Supercentres...On another note, there are 3 (I believe) Vietnamese spots in MedHat - are you saying none are good (I'm living 1 hour south of town and have been enjoying v. good pho in Lethbridge).