Baconfest, Canada Day Eats, Street Fests, Summerlicious & More – The July Food Calendar!

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Happy Canada Day weekend!!  I am so happy the long weekend is here.  I have some really fun food plans (patio dining, possibly some cupcake munching, a special cafe tasting, and Mexican dinner with the fam!) and I’m looking forward to catching up on things around here, posting my photos and write-up on my Taste of PEI event, new vegetarian eats, some mac n’ cheese cheesy goodness, and getting my new Features page nice and plump!  I’m really sorry Ate by Ate has been so quiet for the past week.  I don’t know what in the world was going on but my internet was cutting in and out all week and it made it so difficult getting anything done (if I wasn’t refreshing, I was closing and reopening the browser or just waiting for the darn page to stop spinning!).  I managed to pump out a HUGE food calendar for the month of July though over the course of a few days though so I’m glad I accomplished something this week!  I hope everyone enjoys the time off, goodness knows we deserve it and need it!

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Food Festivals & Events

Toronto Ribfest – Food & Music Festival, June 28 – July 1.  11am-11pm.  Centennial Park at 256 Centennial Park Road (Eglinton West to the north, Renforth Drive to the east, Rathburn Road to the south and Centennial Park Blvd. to the west).  $2 admission.  School’s out and it’s Canada Day long weekend!  In association with Rotary International, Rotary Etobicoke and Rotary Food Initiative, the 14th annual ribfest returns with 16 rib succulent rib vendors, Caribbean and Indian cuisine, and even a summer farmers’ market!  Put on those stretchy pants and get ready to get your hands saucy!  http://www.torontoribfest.com/default.asp

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BACONATION with Barque Smokehouse at the Harbourfront Centre. July 1.  1pm-8pm.  Zone 5 at Harbourfront Centre at 235 Queens Quay West.  $7 for 6 samples.  It sounds cliché, but our nation is known for the mouthwatering bacon we love so much so to celebrate, Barque Smokehouse is smoking it up – bacon style!  They’ll be bringing some of their signature recipes to the Harbourfront for folks can try 6 samples for a $7 tasting plate.  Samples include: smoked pork belly with grilled pineapple and hoisin sauce, peameal bacon tacos with maple slaw and grainy mustard aioli, bacon chips (crispy corn tortillas with smoked bacon salt, charred corn and bacon salsa) and even “fake’n” bacon tofu among others!  http://www.harbourfrontcentre.com/whatson/food.cfm?id=4952

Brewers Backyard – Capital Mashup at Evergreen Brick Works, July 1.  12pm-4pm.  550 Bayview Ave. at Koerner Gardens and Holcim Gallery.  Cost of food: $5-7 for food, $6 for beer.  Event is open to all ages, but folks must be 19+ to purchase and drink beer.  Celebrate Canada’s birthday with a cold one and some great eats!  At this Brewer’s Backyard, beers and breweries from our nation and province’s capitals, Ottawa and Toronto, are in the limelight for a spectacular collaboration – Great Lakes + Cassel, Amsterdam + Broadhead, and Indie Alehouse + Beyond the Pale among others.  Eats include Meat Pie Mates and local food vendors.  http://ebw.evergreen.ca/cal/event/brewers-backyard-the-capital-mashup

Family Pizza Nights at Evergreen Brick Works, July 3.  5:30pm-8pm.  550 Bayview Ave. at EBW’s Chimney Court.  $3 for cost of pizza with salad.  Summer nights were made for eating and relaxing!  Come down with your family and friends every Wednesday until August 28 and enjoy some fresh and delicious homemade, wood-fired pizza, courtesy of Pizza Libretto!  Grab a slice with a side salad for only $3, with all proceeds going toward children’s food programs.  http://ebw.evergreen.ca/whats-on/family-pizza-nights

Deep-Fried Fridays: Salsa & Chifles at the Harbourfront Centre.  July 5.  7pm.  Redpath Stage at the Harbourfront Centre at 235 Queens Quay West.  FREE; cost of food on-site.  Mix music and food at Harbourfront Centre’s NEW series this summer!  Every Friday, bust a move to live summer music and tunes and nosh on international food, deep-fried style, by the waterfront.  This week, dance to salsa and Latin pop for DJ Jimmy Suave and try deep-fried chifles (or “platano verde”), a popular South American/Ecuadorian snack made of plantain slices, lightly fried in olive oil, and sprinkled with salt for a delicious snack that’s perfect on its own or dipped in dips!  http://www.harbourfrontcentre.com/summer/festivals.cfm?id=4883&festival_id=134

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11th Annual Summerlicious, July 5 – 21.  Lunch and dinner hours, every day across the city at participating restaurants.  Summerlicious is celebrating its 11th anniversary this year and the annual summer food event has dished more price fixe menus than ever before with over 150 participating restaurants and eateries to choose from.  Dine al fresco, at the bar, and in the dining rooms of some of the finest establishments in the city with price fixe menus for both lunch ($15, $20, and $25) and dinner ($25, $35, and $45).  http://www.toronto.ca/special_events/summerlicious/2013/index.htm

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Corso Italia Annual Street Festival, July 5 – 7.  10am-11pm.  St. Clair Ave. West from Dufferin St. to Lansdowne Ave.  FREE; cost of food and drink from vendors at the festival.  One of the hottest summer street festivals in the city returns with shopping, music, and food galore!  The festival welcomes Steam Whistle Brewery and plenty of gelato, pastry, bistros, al fresco dining and street food!  http://corsoitaliafestivaltoronto.com/

Taste of Lawrence – International Food & Cultural Festival, July 5 – 7.  6pm-11pm on Friday, 11am-11pm on Saturday, 11am-6pm.  Lawrence Ave. East from Birchmount to Warden.  FREE; cost of food and drink on site.  Enjoy a street festival full of international cuisine and flair at this 3-day festival in Scarborough with live music and entertainment.  This year’s theme?  Disco Nation!  http://www.tasteoflawrence.com/

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World Café at the Harbourfront Centre, July 5 – 7.  6pm-12am on Friday, 12pm-12am on Saturday, 12pm-8pm on Sunday.  235 Queens Quay West at the Harbourfront Centre, Lakeside Terrace.  Cost of food & drink on-site.  Satisfy the tastebuds with Thai, Mexican, Caribbean, Indian, Chinese, vegetarian, or a mish-mash of everything.  This week, enjoy food from Gourmet on the Go, Mexican from Rebozos, Churros and more!  http://www.harbourfrontcentre.com/whatson/food.cfm?id=5000

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Corn Trail: Chef Gloria Carillo’s Patasca and Chicha at the Harbourfront Centre, July 6.  2pm – 2:45pm.  Zone 5 at Harbourfront, 235 Queens Quay West.  FREE.  As part of the Corn Trail series, Chef Gloria Carillo introduces us to patasca, a corn/maize based soup/stew paired with Chicha, a cool and refreshing drink in this Bolivian-centric demo where she brings her perspective on eco-organic and sustainable food processes and practices.  http://www.harbourfrontcentre.com/whatson/food.cfm?id=5013

Corn Trail: Chef Lirio Peck at the Harbourfront Centre, July 6.  3:30pm – 4:15pm.  Zone 5 at Harbourfront, 235 Queens Quay West.  FREE.  As part of the Corn Trail series, Chef Lirio Peck, owner and Peruvian culinary extraordinaire behind Harbord Street’s Boulevard Café, comes to the Harbourfront for a demo on summer fresh Peruvian food featuring corn!  http://www.harbourfrontcentre.com/whatson/food.cfm?id=5015

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Corn Trail: Chef Rossy Earle’s Panamanian Chicken Tamales at the Harbourfront Centre, July 6.  12:30pm – 1:15pm.  Zone 5 at Harbourfront, 235 Queens Quay West.  FREE.  As part of the Corn Trail series, Chef Rossy Earle brings her culinary savvy and cultural roots from Panama City to Harbourfront to showcase chicken tamales and Latin American influences!  Her food demo will feature corn (maize) dough filled with chicken, vegetables and steamed in banana leaves and discussion about how this traditional dish from the rural has made its way into urban spaces and kitchens to become a staple in South American cuisine and diet.  http://www.harbourfrontcentre.com/whatson/food.cfm?id=5012

Empanada Throwdown at the Harbourfront Centre, July 6.  7pm – 9pm.  Zone 5 at Harbourfront, 235 Queens Quay West.  FREE; cost of sample tasting plate.  The competition gets heated at this summer empanada throwdown with top chefs in the city (including Arepa Café’s very own Luis Manuel Cordoba) facing off with their own signature recipes and Venezuelan, South American influences to win your vote for best empanada!  Purchase a sample tasting plate and judge away at this delicious event!  http://www.harbourfrontcentre.com/whatson/food.cfm?id=4960

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South African-Inspired Dinner by Evis Chirowamhangu: A Rusholme Park Supper Club at The Depanneur, July 6.  7:30pm; 8pm dinner.  1033 College Street.  $40+HST/person.  This is a HUGE treat for us Torontonians: Zimbabwean chef Evis Chirowamhangu hosts this special supper club showcasing the rich diversity and personality of South African cuisine with a peek into the culture and traditions that have inspired these dishes.

As Len writes on the Depanneur site, this is something we don’t get to experience often and there is so much room to explore and learn.  Evis will be serving shaved biltong salad (South African cured beef), Grilled Boerowors with Sadza and Curry Vegetable Potjie (sausage, cornmeal and dishes cooked in cast-iron pots!), and Butternut Nhopi Tarts with Marshmallow, a twist on a traditional Zimbabwean dessert.  http://thedepanneur.ca/event/supper-club-south-african-inspired-dinner-by-evis-chirowamhangu/

TD Festival of South Asia, July 6 & 7.  12pm-11pm.  Gerrard Indian Bazaar between Greenwood and Coxwell Ave.  FREE; cost of food and drink on-site.  The culture and cuisine of South Asia come together for one amazing, fun, delicious summer street festival!  The festival will showcase foods from Indian, Afghani, Pakistani, Bengali and Sri Lankan cultures, 20 different restaurants in the neighbourhood will be offering all sorts of food for $1-$6, from barbecue to vegetarian to Indo-Chinese to street food and more!  http://www.festivalofsouthasia.com/index.html

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From Foodies to Food Trucks – 5 Upcoming Food Events in the City!

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Worldwide Vegan Bake Sale – Toronto (TVA), April 27.  1pm-4pm.  17 Baldwin Street (2nd floor) at the Toronto Vegetarian Association, Vegetarian Resource Centre.  FREE; cost of food for donation on-site.  Participants of the Worldwide Vegan Bake Sale promote delicious, cruelty-free food while raising money for the community cause.  Come by for vegan baked goods (we hear there will be marble cupcakes, macaroons, donuts and much more!) and for the collection of vegetarian cookbooks for sale and on loan from the resource library!

*PLUS!*  Worldwide Vegan Bake Sale – Toronto (The CookBook Store), April 27, 2pm-4pm.  850 Yonge Street.

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Gluten Free Garage: The Sequel, April 28.  10am-4pm.  Artscape Wychwood Barns at 601 Christie Street (covered street barn).  $10 for adults, children 12 and under FREE (proceeds go to the Canadian Celiac Association); cost of food and merchandise on-site.  The Gluten Free Garage is back for its sophomore year!  With food and vendors galore in support of celiac disease research and initiatives, the Gluten Free Garage is a market event featuring bakeries, food services, and restaurants; samples from merchants and vendors; health and lifestyle information, resources, and support about gluten-intolerance and gluten-free living; guest speakers and health experts; coupons and more!

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Craft Beer Tasting Menu with Kendra Simmonds: A Rusholme Park Supper Club at The Depanneur, April 28.  7:30pm; 8pm dinner.  1033 College Street.  $40+HST/person.  Calling all beer lovers!  This fantastic tasting menu incorporates both locally brewed craft beers and savoury eats for a mouthwatering experience, fusing different flavours and ingredients to create new and interesting tastes and dishes.

Menu includes beer bread crostini with beer-infused cheddar sauce; a deconstructed beer salad incorporating malt, barley, wheat grass and more; pork and beer two ways!  Beer-brined pork loin in a beer reduction, and beer-glazed pork belly, both served with fresh spring market vegetables; and to end the meal, a sweet taste of beer-battered crepes!

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Better Living Food Truck Festival, May 3.  3pm-7pm.  1 Overland Drive by Shops at Don Mills just off of Don Mills and Lawrence.  FREE; cost of food and drink on-site.  Presented by Better Living Health & Community Services, come on out and take part in the food truck craze that has taken the city, province and nation by storm!  Enjoy some of the city’s most popular and beloved food trucks at this event including Smoke’s Poutinerie, Stuft Gourmet Sausages, The Feisty Jack, and drinks at the Bier Markt!

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*TICKETS NOW ON SALE!*

Toronto Underground Market at Evergreen Brick Works, May 4.  5pm-10pm.  550 Bayview Ave.  $22.60 + $2.50 service charge for general admission + cost of food and drink on-site at the event.  19+ only.  The Toronto Underground Market is special, monthly event that aims to bring our community together via food pathways by uncovering and illuminating hidden culinary talent within our city.  TUM offers food entrepreneurs and budding chefs a platform to share their food and stories, as well as an avenue to promote local food and businesses.  The market is social in nature, where food is eaten and consumed in a communal setting and where guests are encouraged to eat, talk, and mingle with chefs and other dinner guests.

Adventures in Food in May – The Return of Outdoor Markets, Mother’s Day Events, and Food Shows Galore!

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Got chocolate? Chocolate Addict in Kensington Market

May is here and oh my goodness is there ever a ridiculous amount of food goodness to look forward to this month!  I thought April was pretty amazing, what with National Grilled Cheese Month and Easter cupcakes and festivities and all, but May will totally blow April out of the water.  While I was compiling and writing up the May Food Calendar, it felt like I was on a never-ending roller coaster as I kept finding more and more events and markets to add to it.  I’m STILL not entirely finished!  I just found out about some new things today and I need to get cracking on finishing up the Cooking Classes & Workshops calendar because there are some mighty fine tasty specimens to enjoy in that category too.  The best part about all of this food news?  There’s a little bit of everything.  Let’s get started!

Farmers’ markets are heading outside starting this month!

Get the tote bags ready because the outdoor farmers’ markets are busting out this month!  If you read my comprehensive Spring Market News post the other day you’ll know some of this already, but just so we’re all on the same page, May will see the return of markets in East York, Trinity Bellwoods, Sherway Gardens, Withrow Park, and Pedestrian Sundays at Kensington Market among numerous others!  Dates and months can start to get a little confusing when we’re looking at so many markets, so what I’m going to do is make a separate page within the Food Calendar with all the markets that are specifically starting up in May with their locations and dates.  They’ll be listed on the main farmers’ market page as well, but this will make everyone’s lives easier and more streamlined. 

To add even more excitement into the market mix, the market at Evergreen Brick Works will be celebrating their 6th birthday on May 5th, there will be yummy tastings at the Brick Works every Saturday during the spring and summer months, and the foodie community is ecstatic to welcome a brand new market to the city later on this month in the Toronto Botanical Gardens!

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M is for May and M is for Mother’s Day!  If you love to “mangia, mangia!” with mum, there are foodie Mother’s Day weekend activities happening all across the city including Mother’s Day afternoon teas at both the Spadina Museum & Historic House and Gardens, and Montgomery’s Inn in the west end; Mother’s Day brunch on a cruise ship; Mother’s Day brunch at The Drake Hotel on Queen West, and a very special Mother’s Day locavore buffet brunch at Artscape Wychwood Barns featuring fresh, organic, local food from their very own farmers’ market vendors and producers. 

Mum has a sweet tooth?  We have some of that too.  Tasty Tours is hosting and unveiling their highly anticipated Chocolate Tour on Mother’s Day weekend in addition to their Mother’s Day sweets tour!  Tasty Tours is devoted to showcasing the city’s finest in sweets and chocolates around downtown Toronto, most notably in Kensington Market, King West, and Trinity Bellwoods.  They’ll be having a flash sale promotion going on sometime next week  that will slash $15 off the regular ticket price for their Chocolate Tour, so instead of it being $35, you can get it for $20!  I don’t know about you, but I am just a click away from taking advantage of this deal!  Click HERE for the goods! and to sign up for their mailing list so you’ll be in the know about discounts and promotions!

Tasty Tours will be unveiling their chocolate tour this month!

And finally, we can’t forget about the food shows and happy hour festivities!  During the month of May, there’s the Good Food Festival & Market at the International Centre in Mississauga, the Tequila and More Show at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, Iranian Heritage Day at the Royal Ontario Museum, Tastes and Sounds of Asia at Mel Lastman Square, the 2nd Annual Vegan Spring Expo down by the harbourfront, the return of The Stop’s Beer Garden at Wychwood Barns, and the celebration, fight, and solidarity of and behind Food Revolution Day on a local, global, national, and city-wide scale.

There’s a lot to look forward to and I imagine that things are only going to get crazier as the season progresses, but I’m here to be your eyes and ears (and in most cases, your tastebuds!) and I’ll be updating as frequently as I can on everything that will be going on this month and beyond.  Have a happy and foodielicious May, everyone!

A New Lunchtime Market, Macaron Day TO, and More! The March Food Calendar and Events Is Up and Running!

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A new market to enjoy in the downtown core!

Today marks the first day of March and we all know what that means: spring is on the way and there are plenty of food events, classes, workshops, and markets to keep us busy and eating for the entire month!  The March Food Calendar is up and running and this is the largest, most extensive one yet.  I’ve made a separate calendar page for all of Le Dolci’s cupcake and cake decorating, and macaron making classes and I’ll be adding the supper clubs and events to add to The Depanneur calendar page very soon as well as food goodies from Culinary Adventure, the Calphalon Culinary Centre, and more. 

I keep finding more and more amazing cooking classes and food event series to add to the mix each month and it amazes me just how much Toronto has to offer.  These events and workshops may not be advertised as much as they could be, but that’s exactly what I’m here for!  I love compiling the events for the Food Calendars and letting others know about great food related things to take advantage of each month.

Mint Oreo and other green, St. Patrick's Day food goodies to look forward to!

Food events this month include the Toronto Underground Market on March 4th (online tickets are sold out, but tickets will be sold at the door at 8pm for $15, so if you missed out on the frantic online sale, it’s not a total loss!) and the sale of April’s Toronto Underground Market on March 16th; a new ‘Pints of March’ beer event at Wychwood Barns as part of The Stop Community Food Centre’s Brewery Market series; the celebration of Meatout 2012 at the Toronto Vegetarian Association Resource Centre, complete with a sale on the Forks Over Knives documentary and a vegan, pay-what-you-can bake sale; and for all sweet tooths and pastry enthusiasts, Macaron Day TO hits Toronto on March 20th!

Macaron Day in Toronto is March 20th!

Finally, there are new events to look forward to this month: the Lunchtime Office Markets are expanding!  They’ve been a great success at both CSI (Centre for Social Innovation) locations and little by little, the office markets will hit more and more locations in the downtown core, catering to the lunch crowds, office crowds, students, and everywhere else who wants healthy, delicious lunch food on the go.  The newest locaiton?  The ING Direct Cafe at the corner of Yonge and Shuter Street right beside the Eaton Centre!  Markets will be held every Thursday from 11:30am-1:30pm. 

Last, but not least, there’s a cooking class line-up in Ate by Ate town: Marni Wasserman’s vegetarian and vegan cooking classes!  I couldn’t believe my eyes when I saw all the amazing menus and cooking class themes.  Many of the cooking classes are also tailored to those who are eat gluten, soy, dairy, and nut-free diets.  I’m so happy I found these classes because they sound absolutely amazing and I think many of you would be happy to take advantage of these classes.  With all this plus St. Patrick’s Day food festivities, we have a lot to look forward to this month.