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Ontario

10 Toronto Steak Houses That Sizzle

The Shore Club

Everything from traditional favourites to new takes on the classic steak dinner

The Shore Club
The Shore Club is located in the heart of the Entertainment District, close to venues like Roy Thomson Hall and the TIFF Bell Lightbox. Along with classic cuts like New York strip loin, bone-in rib steak and filet mignon, you’ll find a steak and lobster dish, braised short ribs and double-cut lamb chops.
155 Wellington St. W.

Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse
Ruth Fertel, founder of this international chain, credited the success of her steaks as much to their sound and smell as to their taste. That’s why steaks here are cooked at nearly 1,000 degrees Celsius, served on an incredibly hot plate and doused with a tablespoon of sizzle-inducing butter before they leave the kitchen.
145 Richmond St. W.

Morton’s
This Texas-based steakhouse chain has a modern ambiance but still delivers a proper old-school steak—not to mention an impressive number of side dishes, including sautéed broccoli florets, creamed corn, bacon and onion macaroni and cheese, and parmesan and truffle matchstick fries.
4 Avenue Rd.

STK

STK
Mix the vibe of a modern restaurant with that of an exclusive nightclub—there’s even a live DJ—and you’ve got the STK experience. Along with dry-aged steaks, this restaurant offers some unique drink concoctions, with names like Cucumber Stiletto, Carroted Away and Strawberry Cobbler.
153 Yorkville Ave.

Harbour 60
Don’t be surprised to see a Toronto Maple Leaf or two dining here, considering the restaurant is only seconds from the Air Canada Centre, located in the century-old Habour Commission building. The restuarant offers classic fare and has a seafood menu to rival its steaks, with beluga caviar, a daily selection of fresh oysters and a seafood tower, including steamed lobster, king crab legs, jumbo black tiger shrimp and oysters.
60 Harbour St.

Barberian’s Steak House
Founded in 1959, this is one of the oldest steakhouses in Toronto. Sitting in the dinning room, you get the impression little has changed since it first opened its doors. One thing that definitely hasn’t changed is the attention to detail Barberian’s gives to preparing its steaks, which are all butchered and aged in-house. Be sure to ask for a tour of the must-be-seen-to-be-believed wine cellar.
7 Elm St.

Hy’s Steakhouse

Hy’s Steakhouse
Dark mahogany furniture, rich carpets and intimate lighting complement the high-quality, 28-day-aged Canadian beef on the menu here. The Steak Neptune—New York strip loin or filet mignon topped with asparagus, Dungeness crabmeat and hollandaise sauce—is just one of the house specialties.
120 Adelaide St. W.

BlueBloods Steakhouse
One of the city’s most noted tourist attractions is now home to this upscale eatery. Antique furniture mixes with modern art in the billiard room of Casa Loma—a circa 1900 gothic-revival-style mansion—where the Liberty Entertainment Group recently invested $3 million to create a steakhouse featuring cuts of beef sourced from around the world, plus a drink list of international wines and spirits.
1 Austin Ter.

La Castile
Eat like royalty in a three-tiered, castle-inspired dining room, complete with stained-glass windows and chandeliers suspended from cathedral ceilings. Start your meal with flash-fried calamari, escargots or a plate of Caspian Sea caviar before cutting into a char-broiled USDA prime steak, served with mushrooms or steamed spinach.
2179 Dundas St. E., Mississauga

Quinn’s Steakhouse & Irish Bar
Located in the Financial District’s Sheraton Centre Hotel, Quinn’s is a family-owned-and-operated steakhouse with an Irish flare. Not in the mood for their aged Alberta beef steak or slow-roasted prime rib? Try the Irish stew or Clare Island salmon. Whatever you settle on, make sure to relax afterward with a glass of one of the 240 whiskeys on offer.
96 Richmond St. W.

Neat Spots for Gin, Vodka & Rum

By Katie Shapiro

Gin, vodka, and rum may not commonly be enjoyed on their own, but with the consumption of premium spirits on the rise in Canada, that seems to be changing. But what makes a spirit achieve “top-shelf” status anyway? There are no strict standards or benchmarks, but premium spirits should be sippable, made from quality ingredients, and full of flavour. These spirits aren’t meant to be thrown down your throat; they’re silky and bold and they stand alone. (Oh, and premium doesn’t have to mean unaffordable.)

Gin

Stephen Flood Riviera

Stephen Flood had a vision — and 20 years of bartending experience — when he set up the bar at Riviera. “I wanted us to be a gin bar, because this,” he waves to the high ceilings, long gold bar, and sleek light fixtures, “is such a period thing, and gin is the most elegant of all the spirits.”

Flood also posits that gin is the most interesting of all spirits. With few requirements, other than that juniper must be the predominant flavour, the ingredients list can vary widely.

While the long drinks list at Riviera includes many options, it really is a gin bar: there are 25 European gins and 11 North American varieties on offer.

A favourite of Flood’s is Sacred Gin by Sacred Microdistillery, which features 11 botanicals including juniper, cardamom, and citrus. This unique mixture results in a very balanced, creamy gin.

In contrast, Flood suggests the Californian St. George Terroir, made with Douglas fir, California bay laurel, and coastal sage, invoking a real sense of place. Flood likes to engage folks at the bar to pick the perfect gin for one of the “holy trinity” of gin cocktails — a martini, a negroni, or a gin and tonic.

Vodka

Alex Yugin Avant Garde Bar

It should come as no surprise that this Soviet-themed bar — complete with propaganda art posters on the walls and borscht on the menu — boasts a fine vodka list with many Russian vodkas.

Since vodka can be made from just about any organic base material (potatoes, fruits, or grains), Yugin says that the best ones will use a quality base ingredient and the purest water available. Most sophisticated vodkas will be distilled more than once and filtered, often through charcoal, to remove any impurities.

When it comes to choosing a sipping vodka, Yugin, who is from St. Petersburg, singles out Zubrowka Bison Vodka from Poland.

Distilled from rye, Zubrowka is flavoured with a tincture of bison grass, which gives it a distinct herbaceous character along with a faint yellow hue. Each bottle contains one long blade of the grass, which is traditionally harvested in northeastern Poland. With notes of coconut, dill, and vanilla, this spirit totally dismantles the myth that vodka is flavourless and boring. Yugin serves Zubrowka in an icy glass and recommends enjoying sips of premium vodka in between, and — why not? — nibbles of crunchy pickles.

Rum

Julia Hussien and Zach Smith Salt

Though admittedly more of a bourbon bar, Salt’s rum selection is nothing to sneeze at. The Preston Street restaurant offers an assortment of white and brown rums (the latter are darkened by extra aging).

Salt’s bartenders advise that a good rum should be semi-sweet (it is a sugarcane spirit, after all) and will usually feature warming spices — think cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg. To enjoy simply, Hussien likes to serve it over ice with a little brown sugar; Smith suggests ice and a hint of lime juice to brighten the spirit.

Though rum cocktails might transport you to the Caribbean, Smith calls autumn and winter “rum-sipping season.”

For newcomers to rum-sipping, the bartenders suggest Flor de Caña Centenario 12, from Nicaragua, or Brugal 1888, from the Dominican Republic; the former is aged 12 years in American oak barrels (which previously held whisky and bourbon), while the latter is aged in American oak before being finished in Spanish oak sherry casks. Both are smooth, buttery, and slightly toasty with notes of caramel and baked apple; the Flor de Caña offers notes of vanilla and spice, while the Brugal has a hint of smokiness.

Things to do in Toronto This January

The Lorax

Next Stage Theatre Festival
Jan. 3–14
Next Stage is the winter cousin of the Toronto Fringe Festival. But where the Fringe is made up of both established and up-and-coming theatre artists chosen by lottery, Next Stage is a juried affair and consists of both new and remounted plays from past festivals. This year’s highlights include a new work by comedy troupe–puppeteers Sex T-Rex and Fringe vets Martin Dockery and Vanessa Quesnelle.
Factory Theatre, 125 Bathurst St.

The Canadian Odyssey of Lord Milton
To Jan. 7
In 1862, English nobleman Viscount Milton and physician Walter Cheadle travelled across Canada, looking for a direct route to the Cariboo goldfield in British Columbia. The story of their trip was detailed in a book, illustrated by Cheadle, called The North-West Passage By Land. Visitors to the Gardiner Museum can view 13 pieces from both public and private collections of a commemorative tea set featuring hand-painted art inspired by the book’s drawings.
Gardiner Museum, 111 Queen’s Park

Monster Jam
Jan. 13 and 14
In terms of pure spectacle, a monster truck rally is already the automotive equivalent of professional wrestling. Monster Jam likes to take that combination of raw energy and technical expertise and turn it up a notch. The custom-designed trucks that compete for the Toronto Monster Jam championship at the Rogers Centre are an impressive 12 feet tall and 12 feet wide. They sit on 66-inch tires, weigh 10,000 pounds at minimum, and can drive off a ramp and land up to 130 feet away or bounce 35 feet into the air.
Rogers Centre, 1 Blue Jays Way

Toronto Light Fest

Toronto Light Fest
Starts Jan. 19
The Toronto Light Fest aims to combat winter’s dark days by illuminating at least one small pocket of the city. Spanning three months, the festival transforms the historic Distillery District into one of the largest open-air art galleries in the world, thanks to an estimated 750,000 artistically placed lights. The Distillery’s dozens of Victorian-era buildings are surrounded by—and incorporated into—a wide range of sculptures, light canopies and installations created by both local and international light artists.
Distillery District, 55 Mill St.

Arts of the East: Highlights of Islamic Art from the Bruschettini Collection
To Jan. 21
Lavish textiles, patterned carpets, paintings and inlaid metalwork from the 13th to 17th centuries are on display at the Aga Khan Museum in this debut exhibition of one of the most important private collections of Islamic art in the world.
Aga Khan Museum, 77 Wynford Dr.

The Lorax
To Jan. 21
Few people realize beloved children’s author Dr. Seuss was an early supporter of the environmental movement. His 1971 book The Lorax directly addressed threats to nature poised by economic greed. This stage adaptation educates as much as it entertains—courtesy of a set design that will make you feel like you’re living in a Dr. Seuss book.
Royal Alexandra Theatre, 260 King St. W.

Winterlicious
Starts Jan. 26
This citywide celebration of culinary excellence encompasses more than 200 restaurants, each with their own prix-fixe menus for lunch and dinner. This year’s participants include Bar Buca, Canoe, Colette Grand Café, and The Carbon Bar among others. Spots fill up fast at so make sure to make reservations ahead of time.
Various locations

Christian Dior at the ROM

Christian Dior
To March 18
Christian Dior was one of the most influential fashion designers of the 20th century, known for his use of luxury textiles and gorgeous embroideries. To celebrate the 70th anniversary of the House of Dior, the Royal Ontario Museum displays items from its rarely seen collection of haute couture pieces designed by Dior from 1947 to 1957.
Royal Ontario Museum, 100 Queen’s Park

Three New & Notable Ottawa Restaurants

By Joseph Mathieu

It seems like every time you turn around a new restaurant pops up in Ottawa. We aren’t talking about franchises, but unique eateries with their own personality. The newest additions to the city’s food scene are beautiful, interesting, and far from a flash in the pan. Here is a roundup of new and notable restaurants that opened in 2017.

The Albion Rooms’ Heritage Room

33 Nicholas St., 613-760-4771, thealbionrooms.com

Open every day 11 a.m. to late

An often-overlooked gem is hidden in plain sight at the base of the Novotel on Nicholas Street. The lounge chairs and low tables visible from the hotel lobby are only the tip of the iceberg of The Albion Rooms, which includes a polished bar with standing tables, a glass-walled charcuterie station, and a dining room. The restaurant’s newest addition is hidden in the back, called the Heritage Room and themed like a British gastro-pub. Its rounded booths, cozy corners, and satellite kitchen serve up a breakfast buffet every morning, and dinners on Wednesday to Saturday. The harvest table can be the buffet display or sit a 10-person party. The restaurant’s three pillars remain craft cocktails, local beers, and a farm-to-table menu, all of which are well worth exploring.

Tried & True (and something new): Mushrooms on toast ($14) and elk tartare ($15) are nice additions by head chef Jesse Bell, but you really should try the charcuterie board (from $10)

Photo by André Rozon

Sur-Lie

110 Murray St., 613-562-7244, surlierestaurant.ca

Open 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., 5 p.m to 11 p.m.

If you have an interest in locally-inspired modern French cuisine, this is the place for you. Opened last February, sommelier Neil Gowe’s Sur-Lie offers elegant fine dining without the pretension. If you want to eat like the pros, try their $80 five-course tasting menu — and don’t be afraid to ask for recommendations. The menu is seasonal, made with fresh produce and game from the ByWard Market and the surrounding region, and always aims to bring in the best quality ingredients. Each plate is a piece of art that you are welcome to remix with your fork.

Pretty much omg: Local rabbit and fowl tartine ($18) for lunch goes a long way, and dinner is a win with the squash bisque ($10) and Québec fois gras torchon ($20)

Photo by Rémi Thériault

Citizen

207 Gilmour St., 613-422-6505, townlovesyou.com/citizen

Open Thursday to Monday, from 6 p.m. to late

First-timers will feel right at home in this casual wine and small plates nook. With dedicated staff, Citizen builds on the success of its big sister Town (296 Elgin St.) but is really a restaurant apart. Its wine list features bottles from around the world that pair well with menu items from all over the map — influences range from African to Spanish, and Italian to French. Something new (and meatless) by guest chef Mike Frank shows up on every Monday menu. Co-owner and chef Marc Doiron is comfortable creating new dishes for new wines, and the suggested dessert is a wonderful case in point. There are no beers on tap, but it’s hard to notice with such a generous selection of bottled beer from near and far. 

Love at first taste: Falafel and eggplant ($14) or the pork belly with mojito salad ($18), and definitely go for the concord grape tart ($12)

15 Things To Do in Toronto This December

This festive month is filled with a mixture of holiday merriment and family-friendly activities.

New Year’s Eve at Nathan Phillips Square. Photo courtesy of the City of Toronto.

12 Trees: Let There Be Light at The Gardiner Museum
To Jan. 7
A tradition since 1990, this year’s edition is co-curated by author and visual artist Douglas Coupland and focuses on light as a symbol of hope. Evan Biddell, Vivian Wong, Julia White, Alex McLeod, Connor Crawford, Christine Dewancker and Katherine Strang are among the contributing artists who have designed themed trees. This year’s creations include an animated winter dreamscape and a disco-ball tree.
Gardiner Museum, 111 Queen’s Park

Home Alone in Concert
Dec. 1-2
The Toronto Symphony Orchestra, joined by the Etobicoke School of the Arts Junior Chorus, performs John Williams score from the 1990 smash hit during a live screening of the movie. The hit comedic film sees Macaulay Culkin as Kevin McCallister take on two bumbling burglars by himself (played by Joe Pesci and Daniel Stern) when his family accidentally leaves for a trip without him.
Roy Thomson Hall, 60 Simcoe St.

St. Michael’s Choir School Annual Christmas Concert
Dec. 2-3
The angelic voices of the St. Michael’s Choir School, which celebrates its 80th anniversary this year, perform both secular and sacred carols to herald the Christmas season, including “O Come All Ye Faithful,” “Hallelujah,” and Handel’s “Messiah Part I.”
Massey Hall, 178 Victoria St.

150 Years of Canadian Christmas at Casa Loma
Dec. 2-Jan. 7
The city’s palatial castle celebrates the season with a 40-foot tree designed by Canadian icon Jeanne Beker, along with eight other trees throughout the estate. Live entertainment features illusionist Professor Wick and ice skating performers Glisse on Ice. Kids can seek out Santa Claus at his castle workshop, decorate edible treats, and partake in arts and crafts.
1 Austin Terr.

A Christmas Carol. Photo by Photo by Cylla von Tiedemann.

A Christmas Carol
Dec. 7-24
Bah-humbug! Miserly Ebenezer Scrooge discovers his heart and the holiday spirit after visits from the ghosts of Christmas past, present and future in this adaptation of the Charles Dickens classic presented by Soulpepper Theatre Company.
Young Centre for the Performing Arts, 50 Tank House Lane

Peter Pan
Dec. 8-31
Escape to Neverland with J.M. Barrie’s iconic character, Peter Pan. The boy who never grows up encounters an assortment of colourful characters including pirates, fairies, crocodiles, and even ordinary children like the Darling siblings. This musical rendition by Soulpepper Theatre Company is sure to capture the imagination of the entire family.
Young Centre for the Performing Arts, 50 Tank House Lane

The Nutcracker
Dec. 9-30
A true holiday classic featuring the Sugar Plum Fairy, dancing bears, and cannon dolls, is masterfully choreographed by James Kudelka and set to music by Tchaikovsky. The National Ballet of Canada transforms E.T.A. Hoffman’s traditional tale with enchanting dance numbers, elaborate costumes, and lavish sets.
Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, 145 Queen St. W.

The Lorax. Photo by Manuel Harlan.

Dr. Seuss’s The Lorax
Dec. 9-Jan. 21
The North American premiere of this Dr. Seuss fable about protecting the environment gets the stage treatment. Direct from London and adapted by David Greig, Dr. Seuss’s colourful world is reflected with bold sets and costumes, puppets, and an original score by Charlie Fink.
Royal Alexandra Theatre, 260 King St. W.

The Illusionists
Dec. 12-Jan. 7
Marvel as seven world-class magicians perform dazzling displays of wizardy and more right before your eyes. Back by popular demand—last year’s shows sold out—new performers are part of this year’s line up, including Darcy Oake, a.k.a. The Grand Illusionist, who performs death-defying acts, while Raymond Crowe, a.k.a. The Unusualist, is a mime and ventriloquist, and An Ha Lim, a.k.a. The Manipulator, mesmerizes audiences with card tricks.
Princess of Wales Theatre, 300 King St. W.

Dance Me/Music of Leonard Cohen
Dec. 15
This Toronto premiere by Ballets Jazz Montréal (BJM) pays tribute to beloved Canadian singer, songwriter, and poet Leonard Cohen. This contemporary dance company, known for its expressive style and accessibility, selects music from the span of Cohen’s lengthy career.
Sony Centre for the Performing Arts, 1 Front St. E.

DJ Skate Nights on the Natrel Rink
Dec. 16-Feb. 17
Head down to the waterfront for a scenic twirl on the rink at Harbourfront Centre. DJs spin tunes every Saturday night, with hot beverage and bites available from the rinkside restaurant, Boxcar Social.
Harbourfront Centre, 235 Queens Quay W.

Sing-Along Messiah
Dec. 17
Become part of the choir at this interactive show led by conductor “Herr Handel” as thousands of voices sing Handel’s beloved Hallelujah chorus. The Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra and Chamber Choir, along with featured soloists Joanne Lunn, James Laing, Rufus Müller, and Brett Polegato, take part in this family-friendly concert.
Massey Hall, 178 Victoria St.

Disney on Ice

Disney on Ice Presents Reach for the Stars
Dec. 22-Jan. 1
Beloved friends from the Disney Kingdom, including Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Donald Duck and Goofy, join a royal cast that includes Anna and Elsa (and their snowy sidekick, Olaf), Ariel, Rapunzel, and Belle for a musical skating spectacle. Sing along to such songs as “Be Our Guest,” “Let It Go,” and “Tale as Old as Time.”
Rogers Centre, 1 Blue Jays Way

Toronto Christmas Market
To Dec. 23
Inspired by traditional European Christmas markets—and named one of the world’s best by Fodor’s Travel—the magic of the season is on dazzling display at the pedestrian-friendly Distillery District. Good boys and girls can have a photo op with Santa, visit a life-sized gingerbread house, and take a spin on a carousel or a ferris wheel. Grown ups can head to one of several heated lounges and beer gardens throughout the venue and partake in craft beers, mulled wines, European cocktails, and hot toddies.
Distillery District, 55 Mill St.

New Year’s Eve at Nathan Phillips Square
Dec. 31
Bid farewell to 2017 and ring in the new year at the city’s central gathering spot, Nathan Phillips Square. Festivities begin at 8 p.m. (get there earlier to secure a good spot), featuring live performances, a DJ skating party, and an impressive fireworks display to cap off TO Canada with Love, a year-long celebration of Canada’s sesquicentennial.
Nathan Phillips Square, 100 Queen St. W.

Toronto’s Top 6 Sneakers

Elevate Your Street Style with some of the Coolest Sneakers in the City

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Heel Boy

Find your next pair of stylish kicks at this hip boutique. Browse its diverse selection of footwear—from the funky to the sensible—and mixture of mid-range to high-end brands. 773 Queen St. W.; 53 Gristmill Ln., Adidas Gazelle trainer, $100

 

 

 

 

 

 

Browns

Outfit yourself at this Montreal-based purveyor of shoes for both adults and children. Here you’ll find everything from thigh-high boots by Strategia to alligator-clad sneakers from Lacoste. 110 Bloor St. W.; other locations,  Lacoste Eyyla 317 1, $200

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ecco

Outfit yourself like a Scandinavian with a selection of comfortable boots, shoes, sandals and accessories in classic styles from this Danish company. CF Toronto Eaton Centre, 220 Yonge St.; other locations,  Soft 1 high-top, $160

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Davids

Canada’s largest independent luxury shoe store features such labels as Manolo Blahnik, Swims and Hugo  Boss. 66 Bloor St. W.; other locations, Swims motion mid-cut, $220

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ron White

Along with Ron’s All Day Heels and signature collections, this shop stocks names like Frye, Cole Haan and Mephisto. Manulife Centre,
55 Bloor St. W.; other locations, Stella floral dark jeans multi, $445

 

 

 

 

 

 

Want Apothecary

Browse the selection of carefully curated footwear from Want Les Essentiels, as well as other well-known and emerging designers. Want Apothecary also carries clothing, beauty products and accessories. 1070 Yonge St.; 2579 Yonge St., Lalibela sneaker, $275

2017 Holiday Gift Guide for Kids

Explore Toronto’s fantastic shopping scene to find gifts for friends, family and anyone else on your list.

Raccoon hand puppet ($61.95)
ShopAGO, Art Gallery
of Ontario, 317 Dundas St. W., shop2.ago.net

View a slideshow of great toys and adorable gift ideas:

Toronto’s Best Christmas Market

Eat, drink and be merry at the Distillery District’s holiday bazaar

Bundle up and walk the cobblestone streets of the historic Distillery District during the most magical time of year. From Nov. 16 to Dec. 23, the Toronto Christmas Market offers shoppers a chance to browse local handicrafts and sample hearty fare like poutine and schnitzel. You can also sip mulled wine under one of the city’s largest real Christmas trees, as carollers, brass bands and choirs fill the air with holiday cheer. If the weather gets chilly, you can always warm up in one of the cosy nearby boutiques, restaurants or bars.

2017 Warm & Cosy Holiday Gift Guide

Explore Toronto’s fantastic shopping scene to find gifts for friends, family and anyone else on your list.

Wolf-pompom knit toque ($99)
Simons, Square One Shopping Centre, 100 City Centre Dr.,
Mississauga, m.simons.ca

View a slideshow of great clothing items and other cozy gift ideas:

The 2017 Holiday Gift Guide

Everyone has their own idea of the perfect holiday. Some like to cook up a storm, others head for the hills. And then there are those for whom holidays mean dressing up and hitting every fabulous party. No matter how you like to wile away the time, our holiday gift guide has you covered.

Party Time

Diamond Earrings at Howard Fine Jewellers, 220 Sparks St.

Sparkle like a red-carpet star with these stunning dangle earrings, which feature round and yellow enhanced diamonds. $19,500.

Dirty Jokes at Stomping Ground, 728 Bank St.

Take your cocktail party banter to a new level with this collection of adult jokes. $11

Ace Face Shoes at John Fluevog Shoes, 61 William St.

These fancy lace-up derbys by the celebrated Canadian designer will ensure that you step out in style. $349.

Appliqué Minaudière Purse at Nordstrom50 Rideau St.

Add texture and shine to an evening outfit with this pint-sized purse. $169.

Silk Ties at E.R. Fisher199 Richmond Rd.

Dion neckwear has been making high-quality silk ties ($95-$135) and pocket rounds ($65) out of Toronto for 40 years.

Cook

Cheese Board at Boogie & Birdie, 256 Elgin St.

Show your national pride with this made-in-Canada bamboo cheese board. $106.

Reusable Bags at terra201304 Wellington St. W.

Be a wise owl and use these cute reusable bags, which come in a package of two. $15.

Japanese Blade at Knifewear, 800 Bank St.

The Mugen Santoku is a multi-purpose knife perfect for slicing, dicing, and mincing vegetables. $500.

Wood Finish at Maker House Company, 987 Wellington St. W.

Enhance and protect your wooden utensils and cutting boards with this all-natural beeswax product. $8.

Food Storage at The Chef’s Paradise1314 Bank St.

This alternative to plastic wrap uses the heat of your hand to create a seal. $30.

Play

Mountaineering Board Game by Family Pastimes

Watch for avalanches, overcome frostbite, and grapple with other challenges in this cooperative, locally-made board game. $21.

Poop Coaster at Maker House Company, 987 Wellington St. W.

This coaster protects furniture — and lets guests know you’re not that uptight. $22. 

Good Gorilla at The Modern Shop, 541 Sussex Dr.

Hanno the gorilla can hold poses and hook onto furniture, bringing a touch of fun to any space. $150.

Snoopy Backpack at Simons, 50 Rideau St.

This Peanuts backpack by Vans features a padded back and adjustable strap. $45.

Phone Case at Boogie & Birdie, 256 Elgin St.

Is it mixed tape or mix tape? Regardless, transform your iPhone into an icon with this throwback case. $36.

Cozy Up

Earmuffs at the Hudson’s Bay Company50 Rideau St.

These faux fur earmuffs from the Canadian Olympic Team Collection feature a cozy knit headband. Also available in red. $30.

Box of Chocolates by Bernard Callebaut314 Richmond Rd.

This collection features handcrafted chocolates, five of which are award winners. $24.

Grand Teapot at Le Creuset517 Sussex Dr.

This teapot has a capacity of four cups — so your reading (or Netflix-binging) time won’t be interrupted by the need to put the kettle on. $60.

Canadian Club 40 YO at the LCBO, various locations

Toast Canada’s 150th with limited-edition Canadian Club Whisky that has been aged for 40 years. $250. 

Wool Blanket at The Opinicon1697 Chaffeys Lock Rd.

Handmade in Canada, this 100 per cent virgin wool blanket is the same one that graces the beds at the historical Opinicon Resort. $195.

Explore

Weatherproof Pad at Lee Valley, 900 Morisson Dr.

The Rite in the Rain notebook will not absorb water, nor will it curl or wrinkle. $9.50.

Craft Beer at the LCBO, various locations

Get adventurous with your tastebuds with beer from Ontario’s Collective Arts and Flying Monkeys. About $3.

Rab Microlight Alpine Jacket at Bushtukah, 203 Richmond Rd.

This lightweight down winter jacket is ideal for when the temperatures drop and weight is a concern. $350.

Eton Grundig Executive Satellite Radio at MEC, 366 Richmond Rd.

This device receives AM, FM, long and shortwave, VHF, marine, and HAM signals. $200.

The Bripe at Equator Coffee Roasters, 412 Churchill Ave. N.

You don’t want to lug a coffee pot to the great outdoors but need a caffeine fix. This copper apparatus and its kit allows the user to brew up an espresso in just a few minutes. $99.

A Perfect Fall Day in Toronto

Enjoy the most colourful season with these five family friendly activities

9:00 a.m. Find fresh vegetables, preserves, baked goods and more at one of the city’s farmer’s markets, including the Evergreen Brick Works (550 Bayview Ave.), Dufferin Grove (875 Dufferin Park Ave.), Sorauren Park (289 Sorauren Ave.), and St. Lawrence Market (93 Front St. E.).

11:00 a.m. Go apple picking, navigate an eight-acre corn maze and watch pumpkins get shot out of a cannon on a visit to Pingle’s Farm Market. 1805 Taunton Rd. E., Hampton, ON.

5:00 p.m. Stop into Kalendar for a late after-noon break. The Little Italy institution offers a number of warming seasonal drinks, including mulled wine and cider. 546 College St.

3:00 p.m. Take in the fall colours with a hike along the West Humber River Valley, the East Don Parkland, E.T. Seton Park, Scarborough’s Cudia Park, or Etobicoke’s Rouge Valley.

7:00 p.m. There’s no better season for classic Canadian comfort food than autumn. Drop by Bannock for a fish and shrimp cake,
cod chowder or spinach greens mac and cheese. 401 Bay St.

2017 Food and Drink Holiday Gift Guide

Explore Toronto’s fantastic shopping scene to find gifts for friends, family and anyone else on your list.

Nuremberg-style Lebkuchen cookies ($24 and up)
Pusateri’s Fine Foods, 57 Yorkville Ave.; other locations, pusateris.com

Click below to view a slideshow of great food and drink gift ideas: