Canadian Traditions: Toronto Christmas Market

Despite the recent ugly sweater trend, the stress of finding just the right gift, and the crowds of holiday shoppers, Christmas really is my favourite holiday. I love getting together with friends and family, enjoying the warm glow of twinkling lights and of course, tasting all of the delicious foods that come out at this time of year.

To kick-off the holiday season, we decided to brave the droves of Christmas revellers and check out the Toronto Christmas Market in the Historic Distillery District.

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On the recommendation of some wise friends, we planned to go during the week when the crowds were more tolerable, and since December 1st was a Thursday, we thought it would be a perfect night for our first visit to this annual event.

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I felt like I was wondering through Santa’s village with all the magic and romance of the season. The cobblestone streets are lined with adorable little cabins selling everything from candy canes to babushka nesting dolls. And the market offers plenty of opportunities to update your Facebook cover photo.

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To stay warm on this windy evening, we headed to Soma for some hot chocolate. An intense shot of Maya Drinking Chocolate is an absolute must—a dark chocolate drink layered with chili peppers, orange peel, ginger and a special blend of spices.

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Food options are plentiful and include:

  • Tornado Potato – German potato pancakes served with applesauce and sour cream. A whole potato spiraled onto a skewer with a choice of your favourite seasoning.
  • Gourmet grilled cheese – featuring the “The Christmas Dinner” with Roast Turkey, Cranberry and Brie
  • Chimney Stax – a hand rolled, rotisserie baked Eastern European sweets served in a variety of delicious holiday flavours.

But, we opted for classic French Canadian Poutine with thick cut fries topped with melting cheese curds and rich gravy. Word of advice: arrive hungry.

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The Christmas Market runs until December 22nd, so there’s still plenty of time to enjoy some tasty holiday treats while you shop for those on your nice list!

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Images: Lucinda Brooks Photography

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