Venturing Out

16 Dec

By Stephanie Dickison

This past week I had to go to areas around town that I don’t get to very often.

Like most people, I like to venture out to new places, but with the time demands of writing and reviewing restaurants, errands and social events, I keep to my local places and venture out only on weekends when time allows or I’m heading to the area as a destination.

This week, I had the pleasure of rediscovering Church Street and Bloor West Village.

Church is somewhere that I like and know, but rarely get to. I hadn’t been in years and I couldn’t believe how much it changed. I also couldn’t believe the wealth of amazing food stores.

Cumbrae’s is something of a legend in the city for having superb farm-raised meats and handmade foods. I was window-shopping before reviewing a restaurant in the area and just walking into the beautiful store made my mouth water.

And then just across the street is Reither’s Fine Food International – 416-961-3892 – where you can get a huge mini meat loaf dressed a number of delectable ways for only $4.99! There are incredible prepared foods along with interesting products from around the world. I found seasoning for a liver and bacon plate, curry ketchup and many cookies, crackers, jams, cheeses, meats, chocolates and grocery items to please any food lover!

Two days later I found myself in Bloor West Village where I picked up almond tarts for our neighbours, packaged soups (check out my blog about the soups here) for myself and a lovely book author whom I interviewed earlier this year and tours to such an extent that she often isn’t allowed much time to eat, sliced leg of lamb for sandwiches (my new favourite find!) from Max’s – 2299 Bloor Street West 416-766-6362 – and some incredible chocolates that wowed the crowd last night from a deli right at Runnymede and Bloor.

It was so great to rediscover these pockets of the city and I highly recommend it.

I know you are swamped with parties and lunches, shopping and wrapping, but take just an hour or two and walk through an area you haven’t visited for awhile. It is just the thing you need at this time of year. And you won’t come home empty handed. There is so much incredible food to be had in the city. Go have at it!

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