sandwiches

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Two former Susur chefs bring gloriously messy sandwiches to Bloordale Village

Brock Sandwich

Toronto foodies are buzzing on Twitter about Brock Sandwich, a streamlined new lunch counter on Bloor West with eight seats, a six-sandwich menu and three owners, two of them Susur alums. The sandwiches come on pillowy white buns crammed with things like applewood-smoked bacon, mustard-glazed pulled pork and buttermilk fried chicken drenched in fiery piri-piri. Greens, fries and house-made baby dills on the side.

Brock Sandwich, 1260 Bloor St. W., 647-748-1260, brocksandwich.ca, @BrockSandwich  

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A new lunch counter brings healthy takeout to the Junction

Foodbenders

Recent signs of gentrification in the Junction: a hipster-happy flea market, a microbrewery and now organic takeout. Foodbenders, a new healthy lunch counter on Dundas West, caters to the veggie-and-vinyasa set with kale salads, hummus-and-avocado sandwiches and other prepared foods, which it also sells wholesale to coffee shops like Jimmy’s in Kensington Market and Red Fish Blue Fish in the Annex. There aren’t any seats inside, but the park across the street provides plenty of grassy spots for open-air snacking.

Foodbenders, 2763 Dundas St. W., 647-303-2363, foodbenders.com

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North Toronto institution The Belly Buster Submarines opens shop on King West

The Belly Buster Submarines

The Belly Buster Submarines has been fuelling a loyal fan base of Toronto teens and twenty-somethings with after-school snacks and post-bar eats for almost 40 years. Now the uptown institution has expanded south with a new shop on the King West strip alongside other post-club snack shops like Reggies, Wrvst and Lou Dawg’s. The space is sleeker than the uptown original, but the retro quirks, like ketchup- and mustard-coloured walls, are still there, as are the old-school turkey-bacon, meatball and cheesesteak subs.

The Belly Buster Submarines, 389 King St. W, 647-748-1588, www.bellybustersub.com, @bellybustersub

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Introducing: The Clubhouse, a new sandwich shop at College and Spadina

Introducing: Clubhouse Sandwich Shop

Name: The Clubhouse Sandwich Shop
Neighbourhood: University of Toronto
Contact Info: 455 Spadina Ave., 647-502-1291, clubhousesandwichshop.com, @Clubhouseswshop
Owner and chef: Doan Nguyen

The Food: The short menu consists of upgrades on the usual sandwich counter staples. Instead of tuna, veggie and ham and cheese, Cluhouse serves beer-battered halibut with mayo; fried tomato with roasted eggplant and avocado; and grilled grilled pork chop with crackling. Sides include hand-cut fries, soups and salads.

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Toronto Taste 2013: We sample dishes from the chefs of Buca, Splendido, Scaramouche and more

Toronto Taste 2013

Chef Graham Pelley and his team from E11even rocking some sweet yellow shades (Image: Renée Suen)

More than 60 restaurants and other food purveyors took part in the 23rd installment of Toronto Taste at the ROM on Sunday, offering their culinary creations to over 1500 foodies in support of Toronto food-rescue program Second Harvest. Top chefs, including Buca’s Rob Gentile, Splendido’s Victor Barry and Scaramouche’s Carolyn Reid, served up everything from dainty zucchini fritters to pork sandwiches slathered with bacon-fat mayo. Check out our 55-page slideshow to see our favourite dishes.

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Sam’s Philly Cheesesteak opens on Church Street

Sam's Philly Cheesesteak

(Image: TJ Tindale)

Sam’s Philly Cheesesteak is the newest downtown sandwich shop, and latest example of the Philly cheesesteak trend in Toronto restaurants. Snack bars, sammie spots and more ambitious restaurants, like The Gabardine and Beast, have all added the greasy cafeteria staple to their menus. Sam’s, which opened at the corner of Church and Dundas last month, is a hole-in-the-wall sandwich counter serving different takes on the traditional cheesesteak, from the classic beef to teriyaki or buffalo chicken. Its menu also has tacos, burgers, fish sandwiches, wings and nachos—all the right stuff for Ryerson students looking for a quick grease fix before, and after, a big night.

Sam’s Philly Cheesesteak’s, 213 Church Street, 647 748 3991

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Grocery store, deli, coffee house and gelato spot Senisi Fine Foods opens on College Street

Grocery store, deli, coffee house and gelato spot Senisi Fine Foods opens on College Street

Senisi Fine Foods is inspired by Latin America’s bodegas: small neighbourhood stores that carry a little bit of everything. The owner Joseph Senisi opened the tiny shop across the street from The Common on the west end of College after his Kensington Market restaurant The Bellevue shuttered earlier this year. At Senisi, he sells sandwiches, salads, soups, espresso drinks and gelato from Boreal Gelato in Parkdale, as well as gourmet groceries, like bread from St. John’s Bakery and artisanal preserves and jams. [Post City]

Senisi Fine Foods, 1080 College St. W., 416-875-1996

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Introducing: Fika, a charming new café in Kensington Market from Victor Barry and Nikki Leigh McKean

Introducing: Fika

Name: FIKA
Neighbourhood: Kensington Market
Contact Info: 28 Kensington Ave., http://Fika.ca/, @Fikakensington.
Owners: Nikki Leigh McKean and Victor Barry (Splendido, County General)
Chef:
Victor Barry

The Food: Ready-made sandwiches, daily soups, pastries and specials. Most of the baked goods are prepared in Splendido’s kitchen, including the croissants and caraway rye and rosemary potato breads used in the smoked salmon smorrebrod and mortadella panini. Barry is planning to do pop-up specials, like smoked barbecue, on the patio for Pedestrian Sundays this summer.

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The Binge List: top 20 Toronto sandwiches

Toronto’s top 20 sandwiches

Not so long ago, Toronto was a white-bread city. That was before chefs started baking Danish rye, sous-viding bacon and otherwise messing with the old bread-meat-bread formula. Today’s sandwiches are unconventional, artisanal and, we can confirm after extensive testing, utterly delicious. Here, our picks for the top 20 Toronto sandwiches.

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Openings

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Introducing: Boar, the new sandwich shop from the owner of the Black Camel


Name: Boar
Contact info: 3 Glebe Rd. E., 416-482-1616 @boarsandwhiches
Owner and chef: Irwin Schwartz
Neighbourhood: Yonge and Eglinton

The food: Italian-style sammies with a choice of fresh ingredients and in-house sauces.

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Must-Try

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Must-Try: the Bulgogi Torta from A-OK Foods, a Mexican-Korean spin on a fast food classic

Monday Must-Try: A-OK Burger

The fundamental insight behind the addictive Bulgogi Torta from A-OK Foods: few sandwiches are as satisfying as a good, old-fashioned Big Mac. For this cheeky Mexican-Korean creation, chef Chris Jang stuffs sweet grilled rib-eye, a healthy dollop of guacamole and shredded lettuce inside a mayo-slicked Wonder Bread bun, along with a little melted provolone (bracing house pickles are on the side). The resulting sandwich is sweet, salty and fatty, and it melts in your mouth just like the McDonald’s original. Unlike the McDonald’s burger, however, there’s no gastronomical shame associated with ordering it. $7.50

A-OK Foods, 930 Queen St. W., second floor, 647-352-2243, aokfoods.ca, @AOKfoods

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The Black Camel is opening Boar, its second sandwich bar

Black Camel brisket

The Black Camel’s brisket sandwich (Image: Renée Suen)

Popular Rosedale sandwich spot Black Camel is launching a small eight-seat shop in Midtown, and it could be open as early as next week. Like the Camel, Boar is serving sandwiches: hot veal, meatball, grilled chicken, roasted portobello and Italian sausage are all slated to be on the menu. Unlike the Camel, Boar won’t be offering breakfast (hours are from 11 am to 8 pm)—meaning no morning coffee, pastries and breakfast sammies on the go. [The Grid]

 

 

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Coming Soon to Queen East: The Pink Grapefruit, a health-focused grab-and-go café

(Images: Courtesy Pink Grapefruit)

Formerly the site of a medical marijuana compassion club, 106 Queen Street East will soon be home to The Pink Grapefruit, a new grab-and-go café. Chef and owner Tatiana Shabotynsky (George, Auberge du Pommier, L-Eat) is modelling the shop after the sort of health-focused coffee bar–grocery store hybrids she saw during a stint in the UK, like Pret A Manger. The takeout-only café is slated to open in early April, and will serve pre-prepared and made-to-order sandwiches, pantry staples, prepared meals and coffee from Chicago’s Intelligentsia.

The Pink Grapefruit, 106 Queen St. E.

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Introducing: The Hogtown Cure, Dundas West’s new sandwich shop and deli

Introducing: The Hogtown Cure

(Image: Megan Leahy)

The Hogtown Cure is a new straight-from-the-farm deli and sandwich shop which opened earlier this month at the corner of Dundas and Dufferin. Behind the store are husbands Steve Ireson and Chris Schroer, along with co-owner Vanessa Gulletson, who stripped back four previous renovations to reveal original plate glass windows and Victorian wallpaper, which they supplemented with an open-concept copper kitchen and light fixtures made from old canning jars. 

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Introducing: Hogtown Charcuterie, Kensington Market’s new spot for prepared meats

Introducing: Hogtown Charcuterie

(Image: Susan Keefe)

It’s no secret that pig is big right now. The aptly named Hogtown Charcuterie, in Kensington Market, offers a wide selection of hand-cured and smoked meats predominantly of the pork variety. Hogtown’s owner, Pawel Grezlikowski, began practising the art of charcuterie 10 years ago as a hobby. After a year of successfully selling his products at farmers’ markets in the Junction and Davisville, he decided to take the plunge and set up a standalone shop in the space that formerly held the short-lived Mr. Cream and Easton’s Charcuterie.

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