Taste Of The Danforth is one of the largest food events in Toronto so of course I had to go. Not just for the food but to support the community after such an atrocity had taken place not that long ago. I had never been before and I was not going to be bullied by fear into staying away.
What To Eat?
I love it when the toughest part of the day is trying to figure out what to indulge in. I was not the only person checking everything out before making my choice.
I never discovered where you can smash plates (what a shame, I could have used that kind of therapy) but did see quite a few performers on my walk along The Danforth between Broadview and Pape.
Apparently you could get your own customized bottle of Heinz ketchup at their “gif shop”.
Which is a cute idea. Sure, I would love a Suzie The Foodie bottle of ketchup but what I really wanted was good eats.
I will say I was surprised at how many sport displays, games and contests there were. If it helps support the event, that is awesome!
So much to see but spinning wheels and kicking balls are not my thing…
Not just food but FREE samples! Now that is a line I do not mind waiting in. I stood in the hot sun for Galbani‘s fresh mozzarella skewers.
They said it was Italy’s favourite cheese brand and I can see why. Often when I have had fresh mozzarella it is bland and boring. Not this at all. It actually did have flavour as well as that fantasic creamy texture.
Serving it with a basil leaf and half a mini tomato was brilliant. Fresh and flavourful. The perfect way to start my adventure.
The next line for food I waited in was for a beef and lamb gyro.
Can not go to Greek town without getting a gyro and clearly I was not the only one who thought so. Thankfully the line moved swiftly and eagerly.
Bring on the meat, onions and peppers!
At first I wished he had put more tzatziki on my gyro.
Until this fantastically soft pita sandwich started spewing sauce all over me as I sat on a bench in the shade. Next time I will ask them to put it in a plastic bag! What is it about me and having food fall apart all over me lately? This is always a messy sandwich but this was ridiculous! Totally worth it of course. Delicious!
I saw all lots of people walking around with these carved mangoes on a stick which looked fantastic. When I saw them in this display case I made a beeline to check it out. Then I discovered they cover it with hot sauce! You can get a sweet one but I was like, um, no thank you! I am dying of thirst, that is about the last thing I would want after my exploding gyros but hey, if it floats your foodie boat…
My oasis was finally found at Second Cup! I honestly can not remember the last time I was there because they are completely drowned out by Starbucks, Blenz and other coffee shops in Vancouver. I ADORE Second Cup and there was seating inside this air conditioned location. Perfect!
They made me a decaf mocha frappé which I called an iced latte in my Instagram video. Doh! I also did my first foodie Facebook live which was exciting. FYI, this frozen drink is so damn creamy, dreamy, rich and delicious! It did not disappoint and was just what I needed to quench my thirst and cool me down.
The woman who had taken my order at Second Cup mentioned that there was a bride walking down The Danforth. I ran out to find her and there she was!
Not only that, she was standing right by the memorial dedicated to the victims of the shooting last month.
It was very important for me to get out there today and pay my respects to all those who were affected by this horrific act.
I do not think there is one person in Toronto not impacted by the horrendous violence that happened in our city. We came out for ice cream under the summer sun in solidarity.
We showed up to stand in Toronto’s infamously long lines, have a blast, eat food and be a part of the community.
The vendors did hot work on this perfect summer day in August for a hungry crowd that cares about what happens in this community.
Torontonians are tough, passionate and determined to stay strong. The outpouring of people despite what had happened made me proud to call this city my home again.
We heal by coming out, moving on and not letting the psychopaths win.
We win one ice cream cone and smile at a time.
I am so glad I got to come out, pay my respects and eat some fantastic food.
I am home now. I am not afraid.