After testing hundreds of cupcake recipes, The Cupcake Corner's owners finally found their perfect blueprint. Today, they bake their scratch-made mixes into light and airy treats each day, then ice them by hand with freshly whipped buttercream flavours such as lemon, peppermint, and peanut butter. In addition to standard flavours, which all feature a chocolate or vanilla base, they've also come up with specialty creations such as maple bacon and strawberry cheesecake.
The cupcakes come in eco-friendly packaging and, because they have no preservatives, last two days when kept in airtight containers. For each wedding or other catering order, the staff bakes the cupcakes the morning of the event. They'll work with hosts and hostesses to tailor special-event cupcakes to clients’ satisfaction, whether it's adding custom logos, creating new flavours, or matching the icing's color to ring-bearers’ shoelaces.
Tea Story, a sophisticated shop that got its start on Osborne Street, recently expanded into a second location on Corydon Avenue. There, baristas brew more than 120 varieties of loose-leaf tea, including healthy green tea, traditional black tea, fragrant rooibos tea, all-natural herbal tea, ethnic oolong tea, fruit tea, and floral teas that bloom as they steep. Specialty ice lattes, fruit and vegetable smoothies, and bubble teas are also on the menu. Like Tea Story's original location, the Corydon Avenue space is sleek and stylish with midcentury furniture and an ultramodern chandelier.
A crepe recipe may be simple, but transforming the thin batter of eggs, milk, flour, and butter into the paper-thin pancakes takes concentration and expertise—two traits mastered by the chefs at Caramel Crêpe. Once cooked to a golden brown on the flat griddle while diners watch, the traditional, buckwheat, and gluten-free canvases are decorated with everything from a simple sprinkling of cinnamon and sugar to a complex spread of melted mozzarella, smoked chicken breast, and spinach and pesto. Customers can choose from a menu of nearly 20 combinations, each named after the owners’ family and friends and in remembrance of their personal experiences and childhood goldfish. A sleek bistro-like ambiance sets the scene for noshing morning, noon, and night, and it's not unusual to spot a few local celebrities hanging around the eatery, such as Sylvia Kuzyk of CTV.
Inside a vintage studio, Cake-ology's playful bakers craft custom cakes entirely from scratch. They sandwich more than 11 butter cream icing flavours such as mocha, raspberry, cinnamon, and orange between two layers of cake flavours such as marble, red velvet, lemon, and spice. After baking, they decorate their creations with repeating butter cream swirls and stripes, or layer on colorful fondant to create cakes that look like dogs, cars, or a slightly bigger cake. In addition to full-sized desserts, they also mold batter into cupcakes and cakettes - morsels of cake mixed with butter cream and dipped in chocolate. To complement the gallery of colourful cakes, they also make daily-changing baked goods such as imperial cookies, caramel pecan bars, and date slices.
Other breakfasts can seem boring in comparison to a tasty sticky bun with the right toppings. At Jonnies Sticky Buns, sticky buns are baked fresh every morning and afternoon, so both early and late risers can get their fix. Daily changing flavours can be topped by anything from apples to black olives to dark chocolate to pizza toppings. The buns come in standard or mini sizes and can be ordered as a variety pack of a dozen.
With skills honed through the acclaimed Wilton Method of cake decorating, cake artist Tanya Swanarchuk moulds confections into edible party centerpieces. She crafts each cake to suit her clients’ tastes, selecting from classic and premium flavours such as vanilla blueberry, Kahlúa, black forest, and confetti that’s been frozen in time. Cake batter then anoints cupcake or custom cake moulds, which bake treats into shapes of favourite cartoon characters, sports-team logos, or adult-themed images. Tanya can also craft towering tiered cakes for weddings or intricately moulded 3-D cakes that mimic hamburgers to trick finicky eaters into consuming their daily cake allowance.
McGavin's Bread Basket bolsters shoppers’ home arsenals of breads and baked goods with an ever-changing selection of noshes from brands including Dempster’s, Little Debbie, and Dare Foods. The store’s shelves brim with discounted gluten-based delights stamped with swiftly approaching expiration dates alongside excess loaves baked by overly prolific bakers. Sandwich meats find support when enveloped within snowy slices of McGavin’s white bread ($10.49 for five loaves), and Dempster’s English muffins ($6.99 for three six-packs) add a British spirit to breakfast without inviting over Laurence Olivier’s ghost. Additionally, Dempster’s bagels ($8.99 for three six-packs) act as soft bases for sweet and savoury spreads. In the discount section, crust connoisseurs can assemble a team of 10 loaves for $12, mixing and matching yeast-laden goods based upon their size, grain count, and preference for being covered in smooth or chunky peanut butter.