It’s that time of the year where the buds start blooming and new life begins. I went cherry blossom viewing this past weekend, only to find out they weren’t in full bloom yet. However, what I saw this year was definitely better than my first attempt a few years ago when only I only saw one tree with blossoms! Perhaps next year? They say third time’s a charm!
As beautiful as they were, cherry blossom viewing was just a detour towards my real goal that day, which was to check out the new pop-up concept at Yorkdale Mall. It’s called *ahem* “Concept”, where a handful of vendors showcase their products. The first batch were food-related and included:
- Uncle Tetsu
- Eva’s Original Chimney
- Pie Squared
- Caplansky’s Deli
- Nadia’s Chocolates
The two big ones were Uncle Tetsu and Eva’s Original Chimney. There were huge lineups for these two vendors, but definitely worth the wait. Eva’s Original Chimney are Hungarian style ice cream cones. I first wrote about them back when I first tried them at the Canadian National Exhibit (CNE) last summer. Seeing as I enjoyed them the first time, you can imagine how excited I was to see them again (normally, it’s only sold in a floating food truck that travels around different parts of Toronto). This time, I got their Matcha Crunch, which contained a graham cracker cone that was filled with vanilla soft serve ice cream laced in a matcha Kit Kat crumble. It was also topped with matcha sauce and they added a Kit Kat bar for good measure.Yum!
Uncle Tetsu is a place well known in Asia for for their decadent Japanese cheesecakes. Although they do have a store in the heart of Toronto, it was great to see them uptown. Like the downtown store, it was no shock that the lineups were around the bend.
If you have never tried a Japanese cheesecake, it’s definitely a must. It’s soft, it’s fluffy and moist. Uncle Tetsu just so happens to be one of the best ones around. Even though we had to wait a bit for this scrumptious cheesecake, I ordered a pie from Pie Squared while waiting.
They had five types: Guinness beef and potato, steak and cheese, chicken pot pie, jerk chicken and a vegetarian pie. They’re cute little square-shaped pockets that are easy, grab n’ go snacks. I tried jerk chicken, but was a little disappointed when I realized there were more green peppers than chicken and the spices didn’t taste like authentic jerk spice. However, the crust was crispy and it was hot!
Then there’s Nugateau, a vendor that sold the fanciest éclairs I’ve ever seen. I didn’t get to sample one, but they were very pretty to look at.
Although I have heard lots of great things about Caplansky’s Deli (also a food truck in Toronto), I tend to avoid sandwiches when I can so needless to say I didn’t get anything from there. As for Nadia’s chocolate, they sold beautiful chocolate sculptures and treats but they were a bit pricey. A $65 chocolate sculpture, though nice, isn’t really my cup of tea.
Every four weeks, there’s a rotation and new vendors come in. This is also what I think makes this an exciting new retail experience for foodie lovers out there. I don’t think it will always be food-related, so enjoy this lineup of vendors until April 30. After that, who knows what surprises will come. Hopefully more foodie options!
Yorkdale – Concept:
3401 Dufferin Street
North York, Ontario