All stories relating to cupcakes

The Dish

Restaurants

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Chocolate Brunette Pastry Company brings more gourmet cupcakes to Yorkville

Chocolate Brunette Pastry Company

Cocoa raspberry shortbread (Image: Distill Design)

Chocolate Brunette Pastry Company recently opened at Ave and Dav, selling truffles, Italians sweets and their own whipped-cream-and-mousse cupcake bombs. The boutique food shop’s hedonistic creations, like the sweet revenge cupcake filled with toasted walnuts and milk chocolate ganache and the vanilla coconut cupcake topped with mascarpone coconut mousse, look like they could rival the nearby, newly opened, Prairie Girl Bakery’s cupcakes in their epicurean insanity.

Chocolate Brunette Pastry Company. 182 Avenue Rd., 416-834-9711, chocolatebrunette.com

The Dish

Restaurants

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Prairie Girl Bakery brings gourmet cupcakes to Yorkville

Prairie Girl Bakery

(Image: Prairie Girl Bakery)

The wildly popular bakery specializing in deliciously decadent artisanal cupcakes opened a third location at the corner of Bloor West and Avenue Road on Friday. The Yorkville shop carries the same cake-and-icing bombs as Prairie Girl’s King East and Path locations, like banana with peanut butter icing, carrot with cream cheese icing and the best-selling red velvet cupcakes pictured above.

The Goods

Weddings

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Wedding Guide: the best places to buy wedding cakes in Toronto

Where to Find It: Cakes

(Image: Bobbette and Belle)


Bakerbots Baking
416-901-3500
Trained as a visual artist as well as a baker, Rosanne Pezzelli loves to experiment with non-traditional shapes and sculptural forms (a cake that looks like a geisha, for example). Her sense of whimsy is evident in a simple cream-coloured three-tier with a handful of pastel macarons tumbling down the side. A stunning white cake with a sugar bow edged in black showcases beautiful restraint. Each cake—made with eggs, milk, butter and Belgian chocolate—features at least two layers, with possible fillings including chocolate-hazelnut buttercream or cream cheese frosting. Cakes from $1,000. By appointment.


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The Dish

Trend Watch

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Seven food trends at 2013’s Canadian Restaurant and Foodservices Association show

Each year, we head over to the annual Canadian Restaurant and Foodservices Association show to get a look at the big new food trends coming down the pipe. Of our twelve predictions from last year, some were dead on (Toronto couldn’t get enough of rustic Italian cuisine, street food and Mexican flavours), while others were perhaps premature (like our forecast of wide-spread home sous vide cooking and the death of cupcakes). Below, seven trends we observed at this year’s CRFA show:

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The Dish

The Month That Was

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The Month That Was: the Toronto restaurants and bars that opened and closed in February

The-Month-That-Was

Burger and fries at The Burgernator (Image: Megan Leahy)

Opening

  • Fetta—Chef Mark McEwan’s new panini bar at Pearson is one of a slew of new eateries opening at the airport in 2013. Read our Dish post »
  • Nejibee—Toronto’s latest izakaya is also a teppanyaki and sake bar. Its soft opening was Feb. 24, but the grand opening is slated for early March. Read our Dish post »
  • Hitch—Named for noted author and imbiber Christopher Hitchens, the cozy neighbourhood bar focuses on classic cocktails and bourbon. Read our Introducing post »

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The Dish

Openings

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Introducing: PS by Prettysweet, a new custom cake shop and bakery on King West

Name: PS by Prettysweet
Neighbourhood: King West
Contact info: 848 King St. W., 647-352-3318, psbyprettysweet.com, @prettysweetlife
Owner and chef: Adjoa Duncan, a pastry chef who worked at Splendido, Senses and abroad before launching a custom cake business

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The Dish

Openings

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The Cupcake Girls open their first Toronto shop

(Images: Courtesy Cupcakes)

The first Toronto franchise of the popular Vancouver-based Cupcakes chain had its grand opening yesterday in Leaside, until now a relative cupcake desert. Heather White and Lori Joyce launched their original Denman Street shop in 2002 at the beginning of the current boom in frosted mini cakes, before turning themselves into an international brand with the drama-laden W Network series The Cupcake Girls (there’s even an episode about scouting for locations in Toronto).

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The Dish

Food Events

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Weekly Eater: Toronto food events for November 19 to November 25

Joshna Maharaj hosts a screening of Tampopo at the Revue on Thursday

Monday November 19

  • Monday Night Dinners at Local Kitchen and Wine Bar: Every Monday night, Local Kitchen serves a $40 prix fixe menu of Italian fare with half-price wine bottles and no corkage fee. 1710 Queen St. W., 416-534-6700. Find out more »
  • 86’D with Ivy Knight: Warm up with a flight of boozy hot chocolates by resident bartenders Gord Hannah and Sandy De Almeida and a marshmallow sampler bar from The Sweet Escape. The Drake, 1150 Queen St. W., 416-531-5042. Find out more »
  • Gourmet and Gluten-Free: Learn to prepare gluten-free meals with Marni Wasserman. The menu includes carrot-apple soup, brown-rice pesto pasta and saffron-laced quinoa. Marni’s Kitchen, 26 Lauderdale Dr., 647-477-8131. Find out more »
  • Turkish Delight: Join chef Jenelle Regnier-Davis for an exploration of western Asian cuisine, a mash-up of Mediterranean and Middle Eastern flavours. Highlights include grilled pine nut and dried-currant beef kofta, tomato-bulgur pilaf with fresh coriander and Turkish coffee custard. Dish Cooking Studio, 390 Dupont St., 416-920-5559. Find out more »
  • Pasta Goodness: Paola Faiella leads a workshop on fresh pasta dishes, the ultimate cold-weather comfort food. The menu includes pappardelle with boar ragù and penne with asiago cheese and braised lamb shanks. Kingsway LCBO, 2946 Bloor St. W., 416-239-3065. Find out more »
  • The Dinner Party at the Great Hall: Alexandra Feswick hosts a dinner inspired by Judy Chicago’s legendary 1979 art installation, featuring an all-star lineup of female Toronto chefs making dishes dedicated to the women who inspire them. Serving the meal will be some of the city’s top male chefs. The Great Hall, 1087 Queen St. W., 647-381-3401. Find out more »
  • From Scratch Cooking Workshop Series—Jamming with Manning Canning: This week, learn to make caramel-apple jam. Eastminster United Church, 310 Danforth Ave. Find out more »

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The Informer

Random Stuff

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Nine Toronto Halloween costumes, from Kevin O’Leary to a condo tower

Since Halloween falls on a Wednesday this year, most of the revelry will be this coming weekend—which means there’s only a few days left to get a costume together. We’ve dreamed up a few Toronto-centric ideas to get you started.


Rob and Doug Ford: the two-headed mayor
What you’ll need: A papier mâché head of Doug (or Rob, depending on who you think is really in charge) to stick onto your shoulder. For the rest of the outfit, you’ll need a suit or some football coach gear (a Don Bosco varsity jacket would be perfect.)
Extra credit: A second papier mâché head of Adam Vaughan, for something well and truly unholy.


Bacon-Cupcake-Taco
What you’ll need: It’s every major food trend  to hit Toronto this year in a (potentially very scary) costume, and there are a number of ways to pull it off. Do you go as a taco stuffed with little bacon-covered cupcakes? Do you wrap yourself up in pork, cover yourself in icing and add taco-shell shoulder pads? The possibilities are endless. Endless and awful.
Extra credit: You also manage to integrate the current ramen trend (you’re on your own for that).

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The Dish

Openings

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Introducing: Pretty Sweet, the GTA’s newest cupcake truck

Introducing: Pretty Sweet

(Image: Karolyne Ellacott)

As she squeezes swirls of pastel-pink icing onto cupcakes, Savera Hashmi, owner of the new Pretty Sweet Cupcakes truck, tells us how she got caught up in the food truck biz. The self-taught confectioner started with a few Bonnie Gordon classes, and after “a lot of practice,” had graduated to making wedding cakes. A visit to New York, with its competitive food truck scene, got her excited about the prospect of launching her own mobile cupcakery here, but it was only when she saw the Blue Donkey Streatery parked outside of a party that she was convinced it would be possible in rule-loving Toronto. With a little help from Donkey owner Tony Vastis, she was able to get Pretty Sweet ready in time for the CNE Food Truck Rally.

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The Dish

Food Events

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Weekly Eater: Toronto food events for July 2 to July 8

Farmer’s market season has arrived (Image: Kevin Ho)

Monday, July 2

  • 86’D With Ivy Knight: Check out a double bill at the at the Drake Lounge. First, a throw-down for the ultimate hangover cure: the Bloody Mary versus the Caesar. Second, a watermelon-eating contest. The Drake, 1150 Queen St. W., 416-531-5042. Find out more »
  • Piola’s Monday Night Mixer: A weekly aperitivo italiano with cocktail and beer specials and complimentary snacks. 1165 Queen St. W., 416-477-4652. Find out more »

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The Dish

Openings

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Introducing: Le Dolci, Dundas West’s new cupcake studio

Cupcakes! (Image: Karolyne Ellacott)

After her home-based baking business grew too big for its cake tins, Lisa Sanguedolce knew the time had come to move out. She snapped up The Grateful Head’s former space, setting up Le Dolci as part store and part cupcake-design studio. “Come with your mom, your kids or your friends,“ Sanguedolce says. “It’s all about having fun!”

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The Dish

Restaurants

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Where to Eat Now 2012: the 10 top food trucks in the GTA

Flavour of the Year 2012: A Movable Feast

This year, a fleet of new trucks raised street food standards in the GTA. Trouble is, they’re always on the move. Here, the top 10 and their Twitter handles (so you’ll never miss another taco, burger or brownie).

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The Dish

Openings

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Introducing: Tori’s Bakeshop, a pretty new vegan bakery café in the Beach

Victoria Vaccher outside her new Beach bakery (Image: Yves Freypons)

About this time of year, the Beach starts to wake up from its winter slumber, which makes it a great time for Victoria Vaccher to launch her new vegan bakery café, Tori’s Bakeshop. Vaccher became a vegan seven years ago, but it wasn’t until last year that the concept of an eat-in vegan café and bakery occurred to her (previously, she’d had aspirations of a career on Broadway). When she took over the space, there were paint marks from miniature hands all over the primary-coloured walls (it was previously The Art Garage). Almost eight months later, the space looks like something designed by Martha Stewart’s Anthropologie-loving niece. We dropped by to check it out.

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The Dish

Drinks

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Toronto’s Top Delivery: nine first-rate provisioners of groceries, sweets and booze

LOÏC GOURMET
722 Queen St. E.,
416-850-8835

Inspired by French traiteurs, chef David Kokai’s prepared meals and house-made snacks are whimsical and delicious. The veal osso buco makes an excellent Southern Italian meal on the sofa. Free delivery with orders of $80 or more.

COOKIE FRIDAY
cookiefridayco.com
Baker Lois Kim’s web-based cookie business specializes in haute versions of your mom’s favourite recipes. For example, her chewy oatmeal is studded with sour cherries, and the traditional chocolate chip is dusted with fleur de sel. $20 per dozen. Free delivery.

ALWAYS-
DIAL-A-BOTTLE

416-890-7451
Always-Dial-a-Bottle goes to every nook of the city. We requested a bottle of Blaufränkisch, an obscure red wine, and snacks from the grocery store (they do that, too). The booty arrived in two hours. $8 for delivery, plus a 10 per cent surcharge on items.

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