A Toronto summer wouldn’t be complete without exploring all the city has to offer in food and drink. We live in a metropolis brimming with restaurants, breweries, bars, desserts, cafes, and food festivals. You name it, you can probably find it. To get you started on a tour of Toronto’s finest food and drinks, check out our list below.
This Indie88 feature is presented with Thornbury Village Craft Apple Cider.
Toronto’s Festival of Beer
When: July 28-30
Spend the weekend clinking beer mugs with your friends at Toronto’s Festival of Beer. This year’s festival offers games, food by globally acclaimed chefs, and 416 beers to try. Sloan will also be performing at this year’s TFoB, as well as a number of other musical guests.
Summer Lady Beer Fest
When: July 8
The Society of Beer Drinking Ladies know how to throw a party. Due to flooding on Toronto Island, the Summer Lady Beer Fest has become an “OFF-the-island’ beach party at Henderson Brewing Co., and it’s all good because what is more awesome than a women-only beer festival? Food, beer, merch, and music will be available at this summer jam, along with cider and non-alcoholic beverages for the non-beer-drinkers. Don’t forget to grab your “morning after bag” on the way out.
When: July 7-23
Summerlicious will be returning to Toronto this summer, providing three-course prix fixe lunch and dinner menus at over 200 restaurants in Toronto. This is a great opportunity to explore the plethora of cuisines offered in the city.
When: June 30-July 3
A summer foodie classic, the GTA is full of rib fests and Toronto has its very own. Celebrate Canada Day by biting into a slab of freshly grilled ribs or discovering a new steak sauce.
Toronto Food Truck Festival
When: August 4-7
For one delicious weekend every corner of Woodbine Park will be filled with delicious food trucks. Taste the best of Toronto’s mobile restaurants, and maybe try your hand at an eating challenge. The best part? Admission is totally free.
T.O. Food Fest
When: July 9
If you’re a Costco food sampler you’ll love this event. Basically a festival of food sampling, T.O. Food Fest brings you the chance to try yummy meal-sized portions from a combination of established and aspiring chefs. Bring your sweet tooth, because desserts are at the forefront of this food fest.
Toronto Vegan Food and Drink Festival
When: August 19
Cool off with dairy-free ice cream or try some meatless BBQ favourites at this year’s Toronto Vegan Food and Drink Festival. Food is not the only thing at the forefront of this event — if you’re a fan of craft beer and cider, this event offers a number of summer drink vendors.
Taste of the Danforth
When: August 11-13
For one weekend every year, the Danforth turns into a food affair, with dozens of vendors to try and plenty of entertainment to keep you busy while you chow down. Breaking plates is a Greek tradition, and this year’s event will host a unique “breaking plates” event with the people of the Battle Sports “Rage Room.”
Toronto’s Ultimate Chocolate Tour
Tasty Tours presents Toronto’s Ultimate Chocolate Tour in the city’s west end. Every Saturday at 1 p.m. Torontonians are given the opportunity to tour the likes of chocolate connoisseurs around Queen St West, King St West, and Dundas St West (around Trinity Bellwoods Park). This sweet tour involves a guided tour of the history of chocolates, chocolate-making demonstrations, and plenty of samples.
Cool off with some Ice Cream
Toronto is full of shops that specialize in this creamy cold treat. Hollywood Cone, Greg’s Ice Cream, Sweet Jesus, and Summers Ice Cream are a few examples. Take a walk through Little Italy and grab some gelato, or hang around a park on a Saturday afternoon and you’ll be sure to run into an ice cream.
Toronto Craft Beer Festival
When: June 23-24
This year’s Toronto Craft Beer Festival will be taking place at Ontario Place. Whether you consider yourself to be seasoned in the realm of craft beer or completely unknowledgeable, this event offers something for everyone. Craft beer, ciders, food, live music, and games are all offered at this carbonated event.
Take a Cooking Class
Upgrade your cooking skills this summer by trying a class. Among the most popular in Toronto is The Healthy Butcher’s Live to Eat classes, which teaches you the basics of cooking while focusing on cooking with meat. The Cookery’s classes are also a good option, as well as The Edible Story, which takes you through cooking a full course meal.
Brew Your Own Beer
In this craft beer age it’s not unheard of for people to brew beer out of their own garages. There are endless YouTube tutorials, books, and other resources that will take you smoothly through the self-taught route. If you need a little beginner’s knowledge, take a brewery tour at one of Toronto’s zillion craft breweries.
Learn to make sushi
For something a little different, try making your own sushi. This is a great activity to do with others, and there are a few services in Toronto that offer classes, the most popular being Sushi Making For The Soul. If you don’t feel like taking a class, there are infinite videos online that’ll walk you through the craft.
Thank you for reading Indie88’s guide to summer. Catch up on the entire Guide to Summer series.