The Cortado In: Toronto
Hello, friends! We recently spent five sunny days in Toronto, canvassing the city as best we could to experience an amazing craft coffee scene. We trekked over 40 miles in our pursuits, and we loved every minute of it. We visited HotBlack Coffee, Strange Love Coffee, Quantum Coffee, De Mello Palheta (Richmond St.), Early Bird Coffee & Kitchen, Boxcar Social (Temperance Ave.), Dineen Coffee, Sam James Coffee Bar (Toronto St.), Versus Coffee, Sorry Coffee Co., The Coffee Lab, and Sam James Coffee Bar (King St./PATH). We sampled beans from Cut Coffee, Detour Coffee, 49th Parallel, Hale Coffee, De Mello Palheta, Quantum Coffee, Dineen Coffee, Pilot Coffee Roasters, and Phil + Sebastian Coffee Roasters. We sipped espressos, drip coffee, pour overs, and lattes galore. It was a tour de force, and we had a blast exploring the city using coffee as our guide. We regret that we were unable to visit some other shops we had on our to-do list, including but not limited to Fahrenheit Coffee, Neo Coffee, Pilot Coffee (Union Station), and Propeller Coffee, but hey, that gives us ample reason to head back sometime soon!
If you're looking to do a similar tour to what we did, we want to note that certain shops are closer to each other than others. Below you can find a map with a few "loops" of shops to try. Click box with the arrow in the top left hand corner to toggle the loops we recommend!
Below you can find photographs from our visit, as well as our thoughts on each shop.
Our visit to HotBlack Coffee was fantastic. HotBlack uses Detour Coffee for its drinks, and Detour's beans are on sale at this location. We picked up a bag of Detour's Punch Buggy espresso blend here at the recommendation of the knowledgeable and helpful baristas, and we also purchased our favorite latte of the trip here, as well, as it was light and delicate. Note to visitors: HotBlack has an outdoor seating area in the back in addition to the inviting seating in the front of the shop.
De Mello Palheta
We didn't get a photo in De Mello Palheta, but we highly recommend stopping by the space. De Mello Palheta shares its Richmond location with a boutique clothing shop that is very inviting, relaxing, and has friendly baristas. Their main location was a bit too far out for us this trip, so we were very pleased to find this location nearby while strolling Toronto's gorgeous downtown. De Mello Palheta's beans are available here for retail purchase, as well, if you're inclined to pick up a bag. Apparently DMP beans are quite popular, as when we stopped by to pick up a bag to take home, the store was sold out of its retail offerings. Despite this setback, we had a great visit and advise those in the neighborhood to pop in for a cup.