Eat: Bake Shoppe

Pop-Tarts, those iconic toaster pastries have been around for 50 years now and very likely most North American household grew up eating this convenient breakfast food.

I have not had Pop-Tarts in years as we grew out of eating the sugary manufactured pastry but Bake Shoppe, a cute bakery on Dufferin Grove makes pop tarts that have real fruit jam filling (supplied by Kitten and The Bear) and fresh from the oven.

Oh nostalgia.

I visited Bake Shoppe on their 1st birthday, there were helium balloons all over the ceiling. I was more attracted to the hot pink neon sign and that we were going to get a fresh pop tart (we had to wait for a few minutes while it was begin frosted and cooled).

IMG_3171While waiting, we got a Brown Butter Nutella cookie. The cookie was really soft and with a Nutella centre… *sigh*.

IMG_3173When the pop tarts were ready, we took it to go mainly because the parking meter was about to expire.

IMG_3174IMG_3178Blackberry Mint pop tart. The pastry itself is flaky and buttery. I couldn’t really taste the mint in the jam, perhaps muted by the sugar frosting and blackberries. Nonetheless, I loved it. Definitely worth a visit for homemade pop tarts, and not feel guilty eating one that has high-fructose corn syrup, and coloured dyes.

DSC_2981DSC_2984Spotted this cutie as we left the bakery.

Edit: I went to Bake Shoppe to order a cake for Jeff’s birthday. I think I went about two weeks prior to picking it up and it’s an easy, quick process. I ordered their 6″ Chocolate Cake with Ferrero Rocher buttercream. Their cakes are typically three levels of cake and cream, but I asked to make it two levels so it’s shorter. The cake fed the seven of us with ¼ left, but it depends on how you cut your cake. I don’t remember how much the cake was, but it is for sure $30+.

Message plaque can be customized.

Bake Shoppe
859 College St.
Toronto, ON
M6H 1A1


Eat: Katsuya (Downtown Toronto location)

Since Kaiju closed, there has been a void for Japanese curry and katsu. That void has been closed when Katsuya opened downtown, near Ryerson University.

With two locations (one on Yonge between Finch and Steeles), Katsuya services Japanese comfort food such as tonkatsu. We were invited for a private tasting at their then newly-opened downtown location.

They pride on making sauces and the breading in-house for the pork, chicken and fish for their katsu.


We started with Cheese Crabmeat Croquette ($6.00) and Takoyaki ($5.75). Unfortunately, I did not try the croquettes because it had cheese. The takoyaki was decent; it had a crunchy exterior from the use of panko.

Katsuya Original Pork Tender Katsu ($13.50) – Katsuya’s house sauce made with over 5 seasonal fruits, 10 vegetables and 6 organic herbs. Taste may slightly vary depending on the seasonal ingredients used.

I chose to try their original sauce because it is one of their specialty. It is light and on the sweet, tangy side. Jeff had their Curry Katsu and immediately loved it. It is a bit sweet and not too overpowering. It’s not as flavourful as Kaiju, but it’s light. The winner however is the pork cutlet, it is crispy, yet not too oily and tender on the inside. Also, the sauce for the cabbage is so good; it is some soy, sesame sauce they have on the table.


We came back on a separate (non-complimentary) visit for dinner and I had the Tender Pork Curry Katsu. Definitely hit the spot.

Pork Tender Curry Katsu ($15.50) – traditional Japanese style curry made with braised onions and chicken broth.

For less than $20, you get a decent portion of food. It’s a good spot for Ryerson students (but on the student budget, it may be a treat meal). Also, they offer unlimited rice, miso soup and cabbage.

Disclaimer: While the food and beverage was complimentary, the opinions expressed in this post are my own.

66 Gerrard St. East, Unit 100
Toronto, ON
M5B 2M2

Eat: The Beverly on Locke (Hamilton, ON)

While visiting Hamilton, my brother and I drove along Locke Street, which has gone over a huge revitalization with local businesses and restaurants operating along the now busy strip.


For lunch, we went to The Beverly on Locke, a busy brunch and lunch spot amongst Hamiltonians. We visited during the Summer and I believe their menu has changed slightly.

On a side note, early this month, properties and businesses, including The Beverly were victims of vandals targeting anything along the street. It is upsetting to know that there are people who are against economic change. However, it is important to note that this kind of incident will not bring down a vibrant neighbourhood; in fact, it will bring everyone closer.

Grandma Madge’s Tomato Sandwich ($14.50) – ginger pork belly, tomato jam, arugula, sourdough, served with cheese soup and sunflower seeds
Sweet Melissa’s Oatmeal Cookie Pancakes ($13)  – chocolate yogurt, milk crumbs, twist of lemon and Saskatoon berry syrup


It’s a homey restaurant (housed in a house hah), serving comforting food. No reservation, first come, first serve.

The Beverly on Locke
254 Locke St. South
Hamilton, ON
L8P 4B9