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Distillery Historic District

Luminato Festival: Sit at the Kids’ Table with Future Tastes of Toronto

Schoolkids don chefs' toques for the Luminato Festival's Future Tastes of Toronto event

Schoolkids don chefs’ toques for the Luminato Festival’s Future Tastes of Toronto event

JUNE 15 & 16  The opening weekend of Toronto’s premier multidisciplinary arts festival features, among other things, a truly unique culinary event. As part of Luminato’s education and outreach efforts, the festival matched some of the city’s top chefs with elementary school students to create a variety of collaborative food offerings. Having worked alongside the professionals, the youthful apprentices are rolling out their culinary masterpieces for Future Tastes of Toronto: At the Kids’ Table. Not only will the youngsters be hawking their gastronomic delights at more than 25 food stalls, they’ll also be sharing their stories and experiences at a communal eating space. Distillery Historic District, noon, free admission ($5 for each food item); call 416-368-4849 or navigate to luminatofestival.com for more information.  —Laura Sabatini

Outside Art in the Distillery District

Raw Eco Jewellery is but one vendor on hand at Artfest in the Distillery District

Raw Eco Jewellery is but one vendor on hand at Artfest in the Distillery District

MAY 18 TO 20  The Distillery Historic District is already a prime location for browsing the wares at designer boutiques, galleries and studios; it’s even more of a shopping sweet spot when more than 85 Canadian artists and craftspeople assemble here for Artfest. Spend the Victoria Day long weekend strolling the Distillery’s cobblestone streets and ogling unique baubles by Raw Eco Jewellery, wool works by Knit Gallery, art by Lory MacDonald and much more. Live music and gourmet food products add to the attraction of this open-air market. Free admission; visit artfestontario.com for more information.  —Anna Marszalek

The Distillery District Gets Gotstyle

Distillery District Gotstyle Toronto Menswear

The Distillery District’s Gotstyle has apparel for both men and women

The Victorian-era Distillery Historic District, a popular destination with chic art galleries, posh cafés and more, gets another infusion of modern luxury with the opening of Gotstyle. Already a respected name in menswear thanks to its original King West-area store, the retailer’s second location is notable not only for its size—a hefty 6,700 square feet spread across two floors—but for adding a significant stock of ladies’ apparel, too, with such designer brands as Rachel Roy, Malene Birger and Rebecca Minkoff. Bonus: An in-house barbershop and salon helps you top-off your new look, literally, while professional tailors ensure everything fits perfectly.  —Craig Moy

>> Gotstyle, Distillery Historic District, 416-260-9696; gotstylemenswear.com
>> Map and reviews

You Are Here: The Distillery Historic District

What was old is new again in this restored Victorian-era industrial complex that’s home to everything from trend-setting design boutiques, top-tier restaurants, contemporary art galleries and more. (more…)

Hot Shopping: Timeless New Looks by Jessica Rose

Inspired by historical art and design, Toronto’s Jessica Rose resurrects the romance of fashion by blending elegant aesthetics with a bit of modern edginess. Though she got her start as a costume designer at a small theatrical-supply store, Rose’s flowing, feminine apparel has gained an international following; the latest pieces are now easily found at her new eponymous studio boutique, Jessica Rose Design. From geometric detailing to bold colours, Rose’s style ensures flattering looks for any occasion. Wednesday to Sunday. Distillery Historic District, 647-338-7613.

Staff Picks: 5 Spots to Spot Public Art

Canoe Landing Park (photo by Ian Muttoo)

It’s true that Toronto can’t compete with, say, Paris when it comes to decorating our parks and public spaces with art, but more intriguing sculptures, murals and installations are popping up all the time. In particular, these five locations offer visuals that are equally worth photographing and contemplating. (more…)

Hot Dates: Counting Down Toronto’s New Year’s Eve-nts

Break out the bubbly. It's New Year's Eve! (photo by Anders Andermark)

Have you noticed more and more places selling calendars these days? Maybe, just maybe, it has something to do with the imminent arrival of 2012. Hang on though, your 2011 calendar can be put to use one last time to jot down your plans for December 31st. Consider the following to fill up that final square:

  • It wouldn’t really feel like New Year’s in Toronto without CityTV’s New Year’s Eve Bash at Nathan Phillips Square. The 27th annual installment of the bash comes complete with fireworks plus performances by Backstreet Boy Howie D and pop songstress Anjulie. (more…)

Where in Toronto: A Cockle-Warming Weekend at the Lowe’s Christmas Market

Even without snow, the Distillery Historic District can still feel Christmas-y (photo by Alexandra Grigorescu)

Each week, our intrepid interns reflect on life and times in the big city.

Man is an animal. It’s clearest in the winter when once-social beings huddle under blankets and attempt to hibernate. I fold like a cheap suit at the first sign of cold (and run for cover when the month-long barrage of Christmas carols begins), so this past Saturday was an exercise in endurance that became an unexpected reminder of how tempting this city can be. (more…)

Weekend Roundup, December 2 to 4

Friday: Diana Thorneycroft's Group of Seven Awkward Moments is among the images at Gallery TPW's Photorama

Friday, December 2
‘Tis the season to deck the halls with quality artwork. Photography enthusiasts need look no further than 25th anniversary of Gallery TPW’s Photorama show and sale, which has its public opening tonight. Then drop into Gallery 44 for its annual Wall-to-Wall sale, featuring framed and unframed works by Toronto artists.

Inject a bit of spirit into your holiday season with the Soulful Messiah, Quincy Jones’ award-winning R&B rendition of Handel’s classic. At Harbourfront Centre’s Fleck Dance Theatre, Ballet Creole celebrates its 10th year of performing this work with their signature blend of ballet, modern and African-Caribbean dance.

La Bohème’s timeless tale of artists grappling with love, death and paying the bills is well-suited to its new incarnation by theatre company Against the Grain. Puccini’s infamous opera is pulled into the present-day, translated into English and set entirely within the confines of bohemian hangout Tranzac.

There’s more to do after the jump!

Hot Shopping: Find “It” at Blackbird Vintage

photo by Craig Moy

If you’re in the market for some whimsy, look no further than Blackbird Vintage Finds, a new boutique in the Distillery Historic District. Owner Paula DiRenzo knows the city’s vintage decor scene well, having previously owned the posh uptown giftware shop Fleur de Terre. But don’t expect to find the same stock at these new digs. In place of the prim and proper are fun, even edgy items both big and small. DiRenzo has filled her exposed-brick space with a curious and eclectic selection that ranges from vintage typewriters, antique trophies and birdcages to metal letter blocks, religious crosses and globes. Looking for a holiday gift or a piece to take back to the folks at home? How about some notebooks, soaps or jewellery? Or for something really unexpected, a taxidermy bird?

Long Weekend Roundup, September 2 to 5

Friday: The TIFF Bell Lightbox hosts a new exhibition on costume design

Friday, September 2
Marvel at the strange and beautiful creations of costume designers at the TIFF Bell Lightbox’s Canadian Film Gallery, where the exhibition Otherworldly: The Art of Canadian Costume Design opens today, with attire from Splice, The Thing, The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus and other films on display.

Nod your head to the beat and revel in the rhymes as k-os brings his unique blend of rap ‘n’ roll to the CNE Bandshell at Exhibition Place.

Cheer on the Flyin’ Hawaiian Chad Owens at the Rogers Centre—he’ll be looking to run back a kick or two for the Toronto Argonauts when they take on the BC Lions in week 10 Canadian Football League action.

Saturday: Barbadian chef Paul Yellin is just one of the cooks in the Hot & Spicy Food Festival's kitchen

Saturday, September 3
Brace your taste buds for the Hot and Spicy Food Festival. Head down to the Harbourfront Centre to feast on fiery fare from around the world. Music, film, dance, and cooking demos are all on the menu.

Support the ongoing earthquake and tsunami relief effort in Japan at the Concert for Japan at Downsview Park. FTISLAND, Vas Vega, traditional Japanese drummers and others perform. Dress up as your favourite Japanese anime character for a chance to win $1,000.

Cool evening breezes and Shakespearean comedy await you at the Canadian Stage TD Dream in High Park. This outdoor performance of The Winter’s Tale comes complete with fairytales, shipwrecks, romantic misunderstandings and an original music score.

Sunday: There's more than the existing public sculptures to see during the Distillery District's artisan fair.

Sunday, September 4
Art spills onto the streets of The Distillery Historic District. Artisans at the Distillery features local artists showcasing their paintings, sculptures, pottery and more.

Get down at The Guvernment as a cast of all-star DJs rock the Labour of Love Festival. House and electro icon Benny Benassi will spin the records along with rising star Avicii and others.

Hispanic food, folklore and fancy footwork take over Mel Lastman Square in North Toronto for the Hispanic Fiesta. Colourful culture from 20 Spanish-speaking countries will be on display, with over 300 local, national and international performers taking part.

Monday: Pilot Michael Wiskus is one of the many daring flyers in the Canadian International Air Show

Monday, September 5
When you’ve had your fill of doughnut cheeseburgers and fried cola at The Ex, sit back, look up, and gaze at the Canadian International Air Show. Jet fighters, vintage aircraft, and the famed Snowbirds roar above Exhibition Place.

Samba at Yonge-Dundas Square and enjoy the best of Brazil. The Brazilian Day Canada Festival features a street fair, music, food, dancing and a performance by popular samba group Exaltasamba.

See the strength and solidarity of workers on display at the Labour Day Parade. The parade begins at Queen Street and University Avenue and marches to the Dufferin Gates at Exhibition Place.

Weekend Roundup, July 29 to 31

Friday: It's your next-to-last chance to see Next to Normal (photo by Craig Schwartz)

Friday, July 29
Tony- and Pulizter Prize-winning musical Next to Normal offers its final weekend of shows at the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts. Don’t miss this contemporary musical, which is sure to captivate all audiences.

Celebrate African culture as the weekend-long TD Irie Music Festival opens tonight. The festival highlights reggae, salsa, soul and gospel music, and also offers performances from spoken word artists, African dance troupes and film screenings.

Visit the Distillery Historic District for its bustling Distillery Art Market, which features a wide variety of exhibiting artists and craftspeople working in a range of media.

Saturday: Yuck it up with Daniel Tosh

Saturday, July 30
Laugh out loud with Daniel Tosh, who brings his stand-up routine to hallowed Massey Hall. The comedian’s “Tosh Tour On Ice” entertains with two scheduled shows tonight at 7 and 10 p.m.

March down to Exhibition Place and Lake Shore Boulevard to see the Scotiabank Caribbean Carnival’s Grand Parade. The hugely popular annual extravaganza promises brightly colored costumes, festive calypso music and a lively celebration of Caribbean culture.

Watch in awe as LEGO hobbyists construct amazing creations with the colourful building blocks at Brickfete. Activities for the entire family include a LEGO robotics competition, LEGO mosaics and sculptures, and much more!

Sunday: Drake brings his friends to the Molson Canadian Amphitheatre (photo by Anthony Mandler)

Sunday, July 31
Toronto’s own Drake brings his A-game to the Molson Canadian Ampitheatre tonight as part of his second annual OVO Fest. The hip-hop chart-topper headlines, but you’ll also want to catch performances by the likes of Rick Ross, The Weeknd and other special guests.

Practice your swing as the Street Golf Tour rolls into Yonge-Dundas Square. Here, event goers can take part in PGA simulators, certified coaching clinics, and experiment with new technology for beginners and advanced players.

Heat up your weekend with Island Soul at Harbourfront Centre. The festival celebrates the Caribbean through cultural music, dancing and yet another lively parade!