April 20, 2021 | Food
Your Essential Guide to Toronto’s Kensington Market
Where to find some of the best coffee, food and vintage clothing in the Market!
Please note that offerings and services may be affected due to the pandemic.
Ready to check out the eccentric Kensington Market but unsure where to start?
Kensington is home to some seriously delicious and diverse food. With no shortage of options, we suggest starting with some of these Market staples:
- Jumbo Empanadas – 245 Augusta Ave.Ever wondered what’s it like to visit South America and eat an empanada right on the sidewalk? Check out this family-run Chilean shop, offering up authentic meat, cheese and vegetable empanadas. Open since 1991, this place is a local favourite.
- Rasta Pasta – 61 Kensington Ave. Known for its unique Italian and Jamaican fusion food, Rasta Pasta serves up pasta and juicy jerk chicken, together! Grab some takeout and enjoy in nearby Bellevue Square Park.
- Pow Wow Cafe -213 Augusta Ave.One of the city’s rarest gems, is a unique cozy place serving Indigenous food with a modern twist. Their famous tacos are made with frybread (bannock) which pairs great with their homemade cedar soda or a Sapsucker maple water.
- Fresco’s Fish & Chips – 201 Augusta Ave.Well known as one of Toronto’s best fish and chips shops, Fresco’s serves up fried cod, haddock and halibut with premium sides (deep fried pickles!). Enjoy your meal on their cozy patio and watch the street musicians perform in the park across the street.
- Otto’s Berlin Doner– 256 Augusta Ave.Get some of the best German doners (donnairs) outside of Berlin, right here in the heart of the Market. Every item on their minimalist menu is a savoury delight, with all sauces and sides prepared fresh in-house.
It’s time to go shopping.
Kensington Market is widely known as the go-to for vintage shopping. From the rarest branded finds to custom one-of-a-kind clothing, you can get it all in Kensington. You won’t want to miss these shops:
- Sub Rosa Vintage – 16 Kensington Ave.One of Toronto’s top 10 vintage stores, Sub Rosa’s curated pieces are unique and classic all at the same time. Make sure to check out their huge selection of jeans.
- Courage My Love – 14 Kensington Ave. Established in 1975, this shop houses everything from vintage tracksuits, formal wear, costumes, pins, beads and even cowboy boots. This place is your go-to for eclectic and one-of-a-kind treasures.
- Exile – 60 Kensington Ave.One of the more outrageous shops in the Market, Exile has all your costumes needs covered. From leather pants to prom dresses, Exile has a sizeable inventory that’s updated regularly. Custom t-shirt printing is also available onsite.
Finish your visit off with a coffee or cold drink.
Embrace local and independent by checking out these popular cafes and bars:
- Moonbean – 30 St. Andrew St.Much loved by locals, this cozy cafe has something for everyone – caramel mochas, fruit smoothies and iced teas. If you’re looking for something new and unique, you’ll want to try the Moonbeam original lavender lemonade. You can also purchase their coffee beans or cafe swag.
- Jimmy’s Coffee – 191 Baldwin St. A well-known Toronto chain, Jimmy’s is a staple for coffee lovers across the city. The Kensington location is no exception, embracing a simple rustic decor and serving up true quality coffee. Is there an actual Jimmy? No, but there’s a Phil, and the coffee tastes great either way.
- El Rey Mezcal Bar – 2a Kensington Ave. This no reservations bar serves up fun cocktails, local beer, and delicious snacks and tacos. Embrace the Mexican theme with one of their classic mezcals, some lively music and a sunny spot on the patio.
- HandleBar – 159 Augusta Ave. Looking for karaoke, good orchestra or entertaining DJs? Handlebar is a must stop for late night market adventures. With budget friendly drinks and unpretentious simple dishes, you’ll feel right at home in this intimate local favourite.
Your Toronto getaway is waiting.
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