Toronto Newsletter: Summer Highlights

Get geared up for fall, cause we’ve got a stellar lineup of newsletters coming your way! Catch up on some summer reading with this snapshot of past newsletters, and remember to sign up on the site to receive future ones!

OurFaves: Candyland Toronto Faves!: August 15th, 2008

There’s a magical place that opens its gates every year to candy apples, caramel corn and summer sweethearts galore…yes, the CNE is here! The arrival of the Ex this weekend may mark the beginning of the end to summer in T.O., but that just means it’s time to trade in that two-piece for a two-bite brownie and let things loose across town. Go ahead, grab some arm candy and transform the city into your own carnival of cavity faves!

Your Golden Ticket

Satiate that cocoa craving with these fave places for organic fair-trade chocolate (FYI this Lakeshore shop uses cocoa camino chocolate in its handcrafted creations). Let these famous experts treat you to their special dark chocolate ice cream, or take advantage of the weekday martini specials at this hip boutique hotel – the chocolate martinis hit the spot for fabmum.  Head to this intimate Danforth neighbourhood café for a little slice of heaven or seek out this cozy Mount Pleasant patisserie in the name of pain au chocolat.  And don’t forget, there’s always time to stop and smell the roses at The Chocolate Tulip.

Sugar High

Think there’s more to life than chocolate? Well it’s time to shine your sweet tooth and make a date with the dentist, because Tdot is loaded with tons of saccharine hotspots. Why not head over to the Saturday farmers market at this east-end park and grab some honey Winnie-the-Pooh-style. And speaking of that golden goodness, don’t be afraid to try the revered honey and sherry olives at this Queen West tapas faveNBurdak believes they should be their own food group. Give in to that sweet indulgence at these 12 different spots, and don’t forget to give a little sugar, too. Queen West’s Sugar Café is a fave spot for quiet and intimate dining; as girliegirl puts it, it’s so French! Too much sweet-talkin? Add some salt and head to College Street for homemade sweet potato chips.

For the Sweet-ie

The air is still ripe for those hot summer dates with your hun.  Save some gas and take a romantic getaway right in the heart of the city. Check out this downtown hotel full of mystery and historical charm, says rrashid . Dine together on apple cheddar sandwiches and stuffed crepes at this retro-style romantic lunch spot, or keep it a little more low-key at this St. Lawrence Market stopover, and be swept away by the enthusiastic service and succulent cheese omelettes.

Canadiana Faves: June 26, 2008

That’s right, blame Canada. We’re culpable for being the hip, multicultural, fave-worthy country to the North, and proud of it! Get some northern exposure this Canada Day long weekend and paint the town red (and white!)

Canadian customs

Go for a sandwich packed with Canadian cheddar at this celebrated downtown beef house, and then burn off some calories while exploring the aisles at this indie bookstore notorious for supporting Canadian authors and publishers . Do a little shopping at one of our oldest trading posts – take HGTV interior designer Desta Ostapyk’s advice  and grab one of their signature mohair blankets for those cooler summer nights. Salute our national mascot and grab a breakfast burrito at The Beaver Café and treat yourself after to a maple donut at this revered coffee chain. Try and keep all the tasty food down while riding a roller coaster at Canada’s largest theme park, where mcmc says “their new ride, behemoth, is so much fun!!”

Maple leaf musts
Celebrate Canada’s 141st birthday with all things local. Find an Ontario winery that suits your taste and appreciate the beauty of Canadian summer daytrips. Play it cool in the heart of the city and check out the multicultural array of restaurants in this downtown community, where designergirlaz13 says, “there is an entire world of outdoor cafes and great ethnic cuisines all in one spot.” Laugh it up with some Canadian comedy at The Second City and see where local stars like Eugene Levy kick-started their careers.  And don’t forget to watch the fireworks on July 1st from one of these city parks.
Feel the flag

Show your true colours this weekend and keep it real with some red and white faves. Sneeki recommends this red tea shop because “they have a pear tree in their backyard and a coach house with stuffed armchairs,” or you can grab some sangria at this Spadina red room. Get some fresh baked white bread at this local sandwich spot, and the white chocolate cheesecake at Senses will make you wish it was Canada’s birthday everyday!

Groovin’ Faves: June 19th 2008

Between the rain and shine, summer is steaming up. When Toronto’s annual jazz festival swings into gear, keep your cool and follow the beat to lazy, hazy, crazy city faves.

Primp

Ella Fitzgerald and Frank Sinatra — they were not frumpy people. Take their cue and get decked out as the evening draws near. Go vintage and look like a silver-screen star with designer labels like Chanel (minus the price tag) from this fave destination, or go for a modern twist at this classy joint where “crystal chandeliers, Venetian mirrors, and lavish fitting room curtains” sweep DreaDre off her feet.

Adrienne gushes that this hotspot has “cheerfully chic handbags” and “tastefully glamorous baubles.” But if you’re really picky, you can always make your own jewelry at this sinfully stylish shop.

Party

Find the right crowd and head to some jazz lounges. Stay low-key and well-fed (even if you’re vegetarian) at this popular blues bar or swing dance with your partner at this lively locale. Looking to tune into the theatre scene? Visit this queer-friendly bar for unpredictable plays and good-looking patrons. Pay some homage to the Jazz capital itself and head for New Orleans southern fare at this cajun spot that serves hot corn bread and collard greens. If you don’t want the music to stop, listen to more jazzy tunes over breakfast at this café or cure your hangover with a peameal bacon sandwich from this stopover in St. Lawrence Market.

Pose

Switch to a lighter melody and take some time to wind down and relax in your hood. Let your body soak in a salt water pool or in a green tea hot tub at this popular water spa or soak in the sun rays at the Great One’s patio near the water fountain. Cool your heels with your friends at local hangouts or grab some organic or vegan ice cream. Gelato lovers could also enjoy this neighbourhood fave for “rich and delicious” flavours.

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