Join in the Chant – Checking out Chantecler

“Fuck, that’s amazing!” Jacob Wharton-Shukster laughs out loud at my exclamation upon my first mouthful of Chantecler’s polenta and calls over Chef Jonathan Poon and repeats what I’ve said. Poon smiles widely, but shyly, and doesn’t miss a beat as he continues to plate dishes at Chantecler’s pass on a busy Wednesday night, their third […]

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Flowers from the Bird Lady

BIRDLADY from FORTNIGHT LINGERIE on Vimeo. Parkdale, my neighbourhood since 1993, is known for its many characters. People who make the place unique and colourful, people who definitely dance to their own drummer. For 90 some-odd years, one of those characters was Annie Ross. Born in the building that stands on the south-west corner of […]

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The Window at Rhino

My neighbourhood is an interesting place. Run down rooming houses full of run down people sit side-by-side beautifully renovated Victorian and Edwardian homes with $15,000 stoves in the kitchen. We have a high end toy/gift shop but the swankest coffee chain is Coffee Time – we don’t even rate a Tim’s. A seasonal, local, nose-to-tail […]

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Through the Cracks

This neighbourhood is an odd blend of rich and poor. Gorgeous Victorian homes on one block, crumbling low-income apartment buildings on another. It’s a struggle between the NIMBY dreaming of idylic times and high property values and the down and out cruising for a fix of something – sex, drugs, lotto tickets – to dull […]

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The New Neighbour

There’s a new guy, lives on the corner. He spends a lot of time outdoors. He’s pretty quiet, and has this aura of peacefulness that everyone in the neighbourhood is remarking upon. The big Buddha is located at the corner of Dufferin and Melbourne, outside a high-end furniture store called Kuda. Kuda sells a lot […]

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Dinner on the Roof of the World

Tibet Kitchen 1544 Queen Street West 416-913-8726 Dinner for two with all taxes, tip and beer: $50 A week from today, the eyes of the world will be on China. Some people will watch with fingers crossed, cheering on their country’s athletes, while others will direct their attention toward the potential political protests that may […]

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Hail to the ‘Dale

People don’t really think of Parkdale as being a foodie paradise. And yes, if you’re looking for high-end health food items, organic meat or artisanal bread or cheese, you’d be mostly out of luck. But as one of the most multi-cultural neighbours in one of the most multi-cultural cities in the world, we’ve got a […]

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So Long, Jerry!

Tomorrow, my neighbourhood of Parkdale loses one of its most interesting citizens. After 19 years of standing behind a counter every day, Jerry of Jerry’s Fish and Chips will be retiring. He will chop those potatoes, and batter that fish for the very last time. Originally from Guyana, where he left in fear because he […]

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Zippity Street Food

Zippie Café 1718 Queen Street West 647-723-9292 lunch for two with all taxes tip and juice (no apps): $33 In the whole debate we’ve been having in Toronto about street food, one thing seems to have been forgotten – that it should be not only delicious, but simple and easy to eat with the hands. […]

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