Toronto Coffee Shops

San Remo Bakery | Mimico

When I want to bring a spectacular dessert to a dinner party, I head to a very special Italian bakery in south Etobicoke. San Remo is one of my favourite bakeries and cafes in the city. The pastries are beautiful, fresh and delicious. Their macarons rival some of the best pastry shops in the city including Nadege, and I love Nadege. It is crazy busy and you will understand why after you eat something at San Remo. It is the real deal.

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Cafe Con Leche Espresso Bar

I am a coffee fiend and eat Nutella straight out of the jar, so when I heard there is an espresso bar in the Junction that makes a Nutella latte I couldn't get there fast enough. I like how the main ingredient of Cafe Con Leche's signature drink also doubles as decor.

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Ezra's Pound on Dundas West: NOW CLOSED

UPDATE: Ezra's Pound has closed. It has been converted by owner Ezra Braves to S. Lefkowitz, Toronto's first hummusia. Crushed chickpeas are awesome, so love the idea of a hummus-only eatery. Rosie :)

PUBLISHED AUGUST 18 2012: I like a coffee shop that is not afraid to tell you they WANT YOU TO DRINK BETTER COFFEE. Sometimes we all need a reminder.

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The coffee at Ezra's Pound is certainly better. I like a good bold Americano and each cup is made to order, and brewed to perfection, every time.

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There are two locations of Ezra's Pound in the city. This one is at 913 Dundas St. West at Bellwoods. The other is 238 Dupont, at Madison. Rosie :)

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Ezra's Pound on Urbanspoon

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Fair Grounds Cafe: New Lakeshore & 24th Street Location

One of my favourite coffee shops in the city opened another location! There is now a Fair Grounds Organic Cafe further east on the Lakeshore from the 40th Street main location. It's smaller but still packed with all their amazing coffee and treats.

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They also carry the So-Ho-Mish skin cream made by the Honey Bee Store, which sells natural products that have been sourced from both Canadian and international producers that practice sustainable beekeeping.

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This Fair Grounds is located at 3261 Lake Shore Blvd. West (east of 24th Street on the south side west of Kipling). It's open everyday from 7am to 7pm. Rosie :)

Fair Grounds Organic Cafe and Roastery on Urbanspoon

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The Big Guy's Little Coffee Shop

A few of my very favourite things can all be found in this lovely Lakeshore coffee house. Delicious coffee, local works of art and really nice people.

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You know a place is special when it's filled with super-friendly regulars. This gang said they were thinking of putting up a camera and starting a Big Guy's reality show.

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I just love these paintings. They are so striking.

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The Big Guy's Little Coffee Shop even has a little patio out front for sipping your delicious organic coffee or espresso. It's in between Sixth and Seventh Streets in south Etobicoke. We stopped in on our way to Marie Curtis Park. Rosie :)

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The Big Guy's Little Coffee Shop on Urbanspoon

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Birds and Beans Café

When my husband takes a sip of coffee and says: "This feels like a warm hug," I know this is coffee I need to tell you about. Birds and Beans is an independent cafe in Mimico that brews the loveliest organic, shade-grown boutique coffees. They also offer a lunch menu you can enjoy while overlooking the tranquil Amos Waites Park by the waterfront.

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The coffee here isn't just fair trade organic roasts, but certified Bird Friendly® coffee. So not only are you drinking delicious coffee, but you are supporting preserving habitat in coffee-growing regions. I brought home a Mexico Maya blend with notes of chocolate and vanilla that was a lovely complement to my lighter Atwood blend.

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dark roast Birds & Beans

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This is such a nice local coffee shop with a warm happy vibe. The benches in the seating area are actually repurposed from the historical Christ Church Mimico after their tragic fire. Birds and Beans also sponsors CCFEW bird walks in Humber Bay Park. Click here for more info on those. Rosie :)

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Birds and Beans Cafe on Urbanspoon

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Roncy's Bean

After a lovely dinner at Lardon and a torrid rainstorm, there is no better place to get a coffee than Roncy's Bean.

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This wonderful independent coffee shop has homemade gelato, tasty pastries and amazing coffee. (If you like flavoured coffee, try the Tiramisu.) There is a wonderful little chocolate section that is perfect if you just want a bite of something delicious. Roncy's Bean is located at 385 Roncesvalles Avenue. You can follow them on Twitter @roncysbean. Rosie :)

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Fair Grounds Organic Cafe & Roastery

I am not a morning person. So every morning, my coffee needs to do this:

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I buy Wake the Dead (along with other blends such as Rich Bastard and Heart of Darkness) at Fair Grounds Organic on the Lakeshore. Their coffee is fair trade and absolutely some of the freshest and most delicious tasting you'll find in the city. And I have drank a lot of coffee in this city. Fairgrounds is open every day from 6am to 9pm and is located at Browns Line and 40th Street in south Etobicoke. Rosie :)

Fair Grounds Coffee on Urbanspoon

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The Coffee Tree Roastery 25th Anniversary

The Coffee Tree Roastery is a wonderful independent coffee shop in Bloor West Village. They were selling ethically-sourced coffees and roasting beans onsite long before it was trendy. They are celebrating 25 years in business this Saturday May 11th with free americanos and some cake. Happy Silver Anniversary Coffee Tree! Rosie :)

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Atwood Blend at Balzac's

When I saw this tweet from my favourite author earlier I was immediately intrigued.

I love Margaret Atwood, I love Balzac's coffee, and I like most birds, so a trip to re-stock the coffee canister was in order. The Atwood Blend is a mild amber roast with cocoa and caramel loveliness, and it supports the Pelee Island Bird Observatory. Margaret Atwood helped create the blend to raise awareness for this not-for-profit organization. A pound is $17 and you can get it at any of Balzac's locations. Rosie :)

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Kensington Market in Toronto: Market Sundays

I have always loved Kensington Market. It is a historic part of the city with tons of character and a really cool vibe. This summer, the market is closed to cars on Sundays. (You may have heard the ruckus over the swing gates that were installed to block off traffic.) I think anything that endeavours to support local businesses is great. Making Kensington pedestrian-only one day a week gets people walking and shopping and that is good for everybody.

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Kensington is home to some very popular shops like Cheese Magic on Baldwin. Serious cheese-a-holics freak out over Cheese Magic.

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It is also home to Mexican restaurant El Trompo on Augusta, beloved by Toronto foodies. The patio is a major hotspot. It is always packed.

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There are lots of tasty things to eat in the market and a lovely selection of bakeries and coffee shops. The coffee from The Grindhouse on Augusta is so, so good.

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You don't have to wait for Sundays to check out Kensington Market, it's always bustling. Visit the Kensington Market website for a schedule of upcoming events. Rosie :)

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Leah's on St. Clair

Leah's is a sweet little bakery at the corner of St. Clair and Wychwood. The Americanos are great and they have really fun freshly baked treats. I like the "kitchen sink" cookie, because I'm ten.

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Next time I'm getting a chocolate sandwich cookie. Or a chocolate caramel skor pretzel. Leah's is located at 621 St. Clair Avenue (corner of St. Clair and Wychwood.) Rosie :)

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