Because you can't have depths without surfaces.
Linda Grant, thinking about clothes, books and other matters.

Saturday, 14 June 2008

Work and play in Toronto


Next week my sister and I are hooking up in Toronto, where we both have a spot of work to do. Can readers recommend restauarants and shopping and any other pleasures?

The purpose of my visit is presently a secret. All will be revealed on publication of The Thoughtful Dresser.

13 comments:

Anonymous said...

When I clicked on the link it said people who pre-ordered The Thoughtful Dresser had also been looking at books on dementia. Linda, I'd be worried!

Actually, I don't like these Amazon links. I am boycotting Amazon from now on and going to start using other online bookshops. They are becoming monsters!

Geri

Linda Grant said...

That's because one of my earlier books, Remind Me Who I Am Again, is about my mother's dementia

Gi said...

I can't wait to recommend to you some of the local digs from my hometown :D!

If you have time, do swing by the King and Bathurst area. Aside from seeing the legendary Honest Ed's (it's hard to describe, it's like a mixture of flee market and department store and supermarket, with incredible circus sign!), Korean town is right there. Kamja tang (pork bone soup) is incredible there, and right beside it is little Portugal :)!

Shopping-wise, do swing by Queen West area. There are a lot of incredible up-and-coming designers and crazy little stores :)

I miss home, so much you won't believe it.

Toby Wollin said...

Amazing collection.
http://www.batashoemuseum.ca/
Is Toronto the only stop on your trip? You've got an open invitation if you are coming down through upstate New York. :)

Kathleen said...

I have a few things to recommend, that I like whenever I hit Toronto. As gi said, Queen West can be fun - good little lunch spot is The "Queen Mother" cafe, 209 Queen W.. Not sure if you're interested in fabric, but Designer Fabrics at 1360 Queen W. is great (take the tram). Walk the little shops down around the St. Lawrence Market. Avoid Eaton Centre - just dreary retail chains, although the building itself is lovely. Lula Lounge, 1585 Dundas West (take cab) has live salsa music, lessons included for price of supper. Have fun!

Anonymous said...

One of the best little get aways is taking the ferry to Toronto Islands. The boat leaves from one of the big hotels on the waterfront. Hazelton Lanes has some nice shops and nice places to sit down and have a snack, and Yorkville close by is a busy summer place with boutiques.

K.Line said...

Hi Linda: I'm a blogger who lives in downtown TO. On my right banner I link to a series of stores that I quite like. I also talk a lot about my shopping experiences in various different stores in various different neighbourhoods. Queen West is great, of course, but I take it that you might enjoy the Bloor Street strip around Yorkville. It's a mix of eclectic and high-end shops like Holt Renfrew, Brown's for shoes, M0851, Corbo and others.

Gi said...

I left home for too long :p Honest Ed's is not King and Bathurst (although that's where the oldest pub in Toronto is, the Wheat Sheaf), it's at Bloor and Bathurst, my bad.

Another place I highly recommend is uptown around Yonge and Eglington area. Just swing onto the TTC subway and go up, hop off at Eglington Station and walk down Yonge Street. I used to work around the Summerhill Station area and they had a ton of small little stores, with great boutiques and stores with names like Horsefeathers :)

Adina said...

WHat is your taste in restaurants usually like? Toronto does the high-end well, but what makes it special is the little cultural pockets with great ethnic food.

lagatta said...

Yes, I enjoy Queen Mother, and in summertime they have a nice patio. It will seem very cheap to a Londoner.

Thanks Kathleen and k.line for the Toronto tips. Alas my recent Toronto knowledge is limited, as the past few times I've gone there have involved attending or working at conferences (with indifferent catered food) and downtime was spent shopping at Toronto's Kensington Market (yet another colonial copied name - we have a Notre Dame basilica here) and making wokky suppers for friends there.

Our best high-end fabric shop, Marshalls, closed at least a decade ago, sadly.

One thing you might find noteworthy is that global warming and the vintner's art have actually created good-quality wines from Niagara and other Ontario microclimates, very close to where you studied in Hamilton. If you can't get to the vineyards, go to a large LCBO (government wine and spirits monopoly) outlet. The whites are especially interesting.

I won't dare suggest you take the train here to see the Yves St-Laurent show as I know how it is when one is on "déplacement professionnel" - one of my closest friends and his wife were invited to Harvard and I was hoping they could come then - Boston is almost exactly the same distance from Montréal in the other direction - but when working intensely or doing research one may just not have the time. So I'll see them in Paris...

I trust that given St-Laurent's recent demise, the show will be on later in Paris, or perhaps even in London.

journo said...

I'd go to Queen West of Bathurst. It's got lots of interesting little stores and you can relax in Trinity Bellwoods park.

Mae Travels said...

The Royal Ontario Museum (pictured in your post) includes one very obscure collection: the artifacts from the ancient Jewish community of Kaifung, China, which flourished from the 12th through the 18th century, approximately (a long and fascinating story with many mysteries). A missionary Canadian brought these objects to Toronto around 100 years ago. They are in the Chinese section.

anne said...

anne said,

Queen West, definitely. Go to the wild west, Parkdale, for Made You Look jewelry ateltier. Also some good shopping on Yonge Street north of Eglinton. For local microbrewery beer and Quebec cheese try Volo on Yonge @ Dundonald (south of Bloor, named after Thomas Bloor, brewer!)