st. lawrence market is a bustling market, the oldest one in the city. the building dates from the 1800s, and the market from even earlier. it is great fun to go their, as you can see foods that you don't see everyday (example: lemon peper pasta)
St. Lawrence Hall was designed in Renaissance revival style by William Thomas in 1850, after a fired gutten St. Lawrence Market. This was meant to be the centre of Toronto's social life, and it was, with its large amphitheatre. It was where popular political and cultural figures addressed the city's elite and where important fairs and exhibitions were held. It was gradually overtaken by other gatheringspots, and was briefly occupied by the National Ballet School before being restored for the centennial in 1967. Today it is mainly a place for weddings and exhibitions.
St. Lawrence Market is not an actual farmer's market, which is why it may be a bit of a disappointment for anyone looking for specifically local produce. If that's your thing, head across the street to the Farmer's Market building at 92 Front Street. This market is not nearly as upscale as its neighbour across Front, but it is no less trendy with its organic local produce and Toronto takes on such varied goods as chorizos and English baked products.
St. Lawrence market is another one of Toronto's historic shopping experiences but, unlike Kensington market, this is hardly a study of the city's immigration patterns. St. Lawrence market is located very close to the luxury condos that sprung up near Harbourfront and the financial district, which means that many of its clients are among the city's wealthiest inhabitants. The market wasn't always this way - before, when the area was rundown, it was just a regular market with some interesting and neat shops, among them a great churrasqueria and pea meal bacon shop. Today, many of the market stalls offer organic produce, chic takes on market cuisine, products from New Zealand or Japan and some novel forms of jam and baked goods. Some of the original sellers are still in the marketplace, like the cheeseshop at the south end of the building, which always specialized in fancy and imported cheeses. The market can get very busy during the weekends and many who come here are just gawkers and tourists as well (so there's no pressure to buy).
In researching which markets to visit in Toronto, I found that most people prefered the St. Lawrence Market. On Sunday we found the usual antique market. Personally, we thought it was a bunch of junk, but junk to us is probably someone else's treasure. You'll have to decide.
Apparently Saturday is food market of some sort. See www.toronto.com for more details on what the market offers during the week.
If you can, use public transportation. While there is abundant parking, getting around is difficult in a car.
St. Lawrence Market is an old building located on a historic site East of Yonge Street in downtown Toronto. Prior to being a market, it was Toronto's first city hall.
The market sells fresh produce, meat, and baked goods. It is open from Tuesday to Saturday.
There are walking tours that last 2 hours of the market and surrounding area held on Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays at 10 am by Bruce Bell, the official historian of St. Lawrence Market. The tours cost $25 per person
My most recent visit to the city was to take a walking tour of St. Lawrence Market and the surrounding neighbourhood. I have to say that it was the most enjoyable walking tour I have ever been on before, and I've done my fair share!
Our tour guides name was Bruce Bell. He made the trip worth making for sure. He does the tour that we went on every Friday morning at 10AM, just meet in the St. Lawrence Market entry, rain or shine. He was very knowledgeable, but not in the kind of way that makes you think he sat infront of huge textbooks and read them over and over until he had it memorized....he has a true passion for the history of the city and could answer any questions we threw at him. He will also do custom tours....for example, CasaLoma only has automated tours so you can pay him to go through with you and tell you everything you could ever want to more and then some!
He plays a big role in preserving the history of the city too. He's on various commitees dedicated to the cause, and some of the historical plaques we saw said "A Bruce Bell History Project" He's done countless things, all of which you can read about on his website. He also has one book out already, and another scheduled for release this week...... overall I cannot say enough good things about Bruce Bell.....I'll never take another tour of the city with anyone but him.
The St. Lawrence Market is a huge old complex just off of Front St. in downtown Toronto. It's a mecca of fabulous fresh food, meat, fish, veggies, and tons of other food items. The selection of cheeses, condiments, various mustards, baked goods, chocolate is endless. There are stalls upon stalls of yummy goodness both very Canadian, and other worldly as well. You could spend hours sampling different foods and looking at various produce. 2 things NOT TO MISS, are the peameal bacon sandwiches, definitely a local favorite. There's usually a huge lineup at the stalls but definitely worth your wait. And if you go downstairs, just follow the masses of people, and your nose to the stall that has the fantastic veal parmigana sandiwches and eggplant sandwiches, you won't be disappointed!! Then next to that there's a chocolatier and bakery, I'm telling you, if you died and went to heaven, THIS would be it's local supermarket. :-)
As we end our tour of the St. Lawrence Market, I share with you a few of the scenes taken just outside of the entrance. You will first see the mural that is painted on the wall of the Annex that truly depicts the contents inside. Then, a pair of enterprising and very good muscians who entertained with pretty good sense of marketing from the male perspective. Next, there is marketing that is of lesser taste in my opinion. In a world where names to buildings are for sale, billboards and advertising on buses and taxis cover the sides, and every form of entertainment we pay to see comes with an additional price... we must suffer some promotion or advertisement. And so, here are two people walking around with flat screens strapped to their backs proclaiming the virtue of some new movie. Now don't get me wrong, but I enjoy a good movie as well as you, but I would likely NOT go see the one advertised simply because I view it as an intrusion and definitely not what I wanted or needed to see while being a casual tourist. Call me old! Call me un-hip! Call me whatever, but let me call or choose to find information about the movie or attraction I choose to see! Don't put it in my face and expect me to like it. Ok, I feel better now! Ahhh!
The last pictures are of a greater view of the Annex with those fortunate enough to live so close. I would think this may be a "high rent" district but compliment them for their location. Then, I simply included a picture of a fountain in a small park near the Market because I liked it. I hope you do too!
As we continue our shopping for a very special evening, a fragrant and beautiful flower arrangement is needed, da? Many colors to choose from, many choices to create a memorable night. Treated well, these colors will last long beyond The Moment...These colors will paint an everlasting portrait
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