Experience and Discover Riverside’s Food Culture!

Riverside is at the top of the list when it comes to being a culinary destination. Delectable food, quality ingredients, charming hospitality, fine dining to homemade treats in a fantastic location – Riverside’s gastronomic choices are endless.

On Saturday October 26th, The Riverside’s 5th Annual WalkFEST, you can enjoy a free culinary walking tour and savour the taste of Riverside. Led by a renowned Chef Scott Savoie from Culinary Adventure Co., this walk will feature some of the best restaurants and shops in Toronto and give you insights to the world of Gastronomy on the East end.

You may have heard about Ruby Watch Co. or Ruby Eats as the little shop of chef secrets. Owned by one of Canada’s renowned Chef Lynn Crawford, who starred as Top Chef Masters earlier this year, Ruby Eats offers the options from cookware, preferred produce to some of Chef Lynn’s specialities jams, butters, and marinades.

Falafel, hummus, kafta, are you familiar with these food? Whether your answer yes or no, Tabülè is a place you must try.  Known for outstanding service and great food, those who frequent Tabülè are constantly restating their adoration for the savoury and delectable menu options and the unique presentation of Middle Eastern cuisine.

How does, made from scratch, freshly baked, with all locally sourced natural ingredients, sound? The Canadian Pie Company describes its distinct crust as “a cross between a puff pastry and a croissant,” which makes it both flaky and chewy at the same time, it is delicious, flaky and buttery.

Or inform yourself into the health benefits of Olive Oil, Olive & Olives works directly with producers who create authentic and exceptional extra virgin olive oils of the finest quality.

Little samples and tasters will be provided for you through out the tour, and so you can go back and choose your favourite for lunch. The savoury culinary tour will begin at 11am. A moveable feast in all things culinary -you might read some posts about the great meals that people savoured in some of the treasured spots, now it is your chance to experience and discover Riverside’s Food Culture.


Food Sampling

Chef Scott Savoie, owner of “The Culinary Adventure Company” is the gregarious guide for this walk – he’s passionate to showcase the culinary diversity of Canada’s largest city to locals and visitors alike. Culinary Adventure Co. Specializes in food tours, cooking classes, corporate team building events, pop up dinners and tastings, and outdoor activities with a culinary theme such as canoe and beach dining adventures and mushroom forages. It has been ranked the #1 tour company in the city by Trip Advisor since August 2011.


Chef Scott at Olive & Olives store

Space is limited for this walk, so, register early (and check out some of the other unique walks being featured: https://riversidewalkfest2013.eventbrite.com

Riverside WalkFEST was possible due to generous sponsorship from Streetcar.

Maintain a fit lifestyle with your fit dog!

On Saturday, October 26th join us in our Fitness/Dog Walk, one of many other walks that are available for you to join for free in Riverside’s 5th Annual WalkFEST Festival.

Led by Tamara Zerener founder of Fit Dogs, this walk focuses on health benefits of walking and the city of Toronto’s walk-ability.

Woman walking her dog in the park

This walk will guide you on how to keep healthy and supported by City of Toronto’s Chronic Disease Prevention Directorate you can have free access to a pedometer to use during the walk and followed by exploring Riverside’s dog-friendly business, parks, alleys and the whole Riverside district – starting with a Ribbon Cutting of Thompson Street Parkette, which has been inaugurated as Riverside’s official off-leash dog park.

Making sure that you can keep up with your pup, energyXchange will do some intro circuits and stretches. energyXchange is an “un-gym” with a holistic approach to keeping all aspects of you healthy.

Your Fit Dogs romp around Riverside is lead by the founder Tamara Zerener, a world-ranked tennis player turned social worker for at-risk youth and introduced the sporting life to the chaotic lives of her young clients -using sports as a constructive energy outlet and method to foster self-discipline amongst youth.  While busy working with kids, Tamara’s under-stimulated dogs started chew up her house. Recognizing the beneficial impact sports had in her life, and the kid’s she worked with, Tamara started up Fit Dogs in 1997 as a way to get unruly pups the exercise they need.

Tamara has developed dog-centered exercise interventions, starting with her own dogs. After each workout, her dogs were very tired, very happy, refreshingly unambitious on the home front, and newly slim and trim – they were fit dogs!

If you would like to get fitness tips and learn activities that you can enjoy with your dog, sign up for this walk for FREE.

Go to www.riversidewalkfest2013.eventbrite.com and reserve your place.

Riverside WalkFEST was possible due to generous sponsorship from Streetcar

Streetcar: Walkability and the Historic Fabric of Cities

StreetcarLogo.ca_Lockup_BLK-page-001 street car image

Streetcar is a huge proponent of urban living and the cultural richness, opportunities for interactions, and sustainability factors that living in walkable, community oriented yet cosmopolitan neighbourhood like Riverside has to offer.

Walkability is becoming increasingly recognized as an important livability quotient, and the ease and excitement of exploring urban environments by walking is gaining traction through an incredible variety of walking tours such as culinary tours, sounds walks, river walks, and events like Jane’s Walk (which inspired Riverside WalkFEST)– which promotes walkable neighbourhoods and urban literacy through walking conversations.

Part of the richness of urban walking tours is the abundant history of the buildings and built environment. The stories that old buildings have and their transformation over the years from one use to another, adds to the richness of the urban fabric. We see that a lot in Riverside with the old postal factory G being repurposed as a library and the Ralph Thornton Centre, the Former National Bank, has been a disco and now is home to designer Stephan Caras.

Streetcar recognizes the necessity of maintaining and re-purposing Toronto’s unique buildings and integrating the authentic feel of Riverside and much of Toronto’s east end.  By encompassing both adaptive re-use of existing building stock, and new purpose-built loft condominiums, which reflect the design patterns of the surrounding historical buildings, Streetcar both connects with the surrounding area and brings new life to past buildings, while retaining connection to Toronto’s heritage.  Thus, maintaining that Toronto’s streets continue to be interesting and walkable public spaces.

Being committed to urban living, Streetcar is proud to sponsor the Riverside WalkFEST. Streetcar has a long-standing, positive relationship with Riverside, which is home to three Streetcar loft developments as well as their Corporate Head Office. Streetcar’s commitment to rethink urban living aligns with the Riverside WalkFEST, which they believe is a great way to explore and celebrate a unique and multifaceted part of the city.

Find out more about STREETCAR – Toronto’s urban real estate developer here: www.streetcar.ca

Register for the Riverside WalkFEST Here

RiversideTO Preservation and Progress

Whatever you do, don’t call it Leslieville. It’s Riverside.

Spanning 10 blocks along Queen Street East from the Don Valley Parkway to Degrassi Street, this part of town often gets rolled up into the hyped Leslieville neighbourhood. But they’re not one in the same. Formerly known as Queen Broadview Village, Riverside is a small neighbourhood within the larger South Riverdale precinct. But what it may lack in size, it certainly makes up for in terms of culture and history.

Riverside is home to a number of important landmarks, such as the New Broadview House Hotel, the Ralph Thornton Center, the Opera House, which opened in 1909 as a vaudeville stage, and the Jimmy Simpson Recreation Centre. If some of these buildings don’t ring any bells, you may be more familiar with some of the businesses that call (or have called) Riverside home: Dangerous Dan’s Diner, The Real Jerk and of course the infamous strip club, Jilly’s. The Real Jerk held the flagship south east corner of Queen & Broadview for a number of years, but has since been replaced by An Sibin Irish Pub, despite some controversy.


For a number of years now, rumours have been circulating that the New Broadview House Hotel, which houses Jilly’s on the ground floor, was going to be converted into a venue similar to that of the Drake on West Queen West. As gentrification continues to take hold in this east side neighbourhood, it’s likely on a matter of time before something along these lines actually takes place. The building has loads of potential.

As we’ve said many times before, we’re big fans of the east side of downtown. With the Distillery District, Corktown, the under construction West Don Lands Neighbourhood and the revitalization of Regent Park, we really believe that we’re at the beginning of a dramatic push towards the east. It may start with the neighbourhoods closest to downtown, but eventually those areas will stitch in those that happen to fall on the other side of the DVP – like Riverside.

I mean, now that Queen Street West has been conquered all the way to Parkdale, where else is there to go? Look at what happened in New York with the Lower East Side starting in the mid 2000s. Of course, this transformation has already started thanks to condo developers such as Streetcar Development who have been incredibly active in neighbourhoods such as Corktown and Riverside.

Riverside Lofts

Streetcar’s Riverside projects include the Edge Lofts, Sync Lofts and Riverside Lofts (apparently they like lofts). All of these projects are mid-rise in scale and we suspect that we’ll be seeing more of these types of projects. Further east, Streetcar is also developing the Carlaw, which will include a 10,000 square foot performance arts facility and community hub.

100 Broadview

Other condos in the Riverside area include the Broadview Lofts (2004) and the recently completed the Ninety by Harhay Developments, which neatly integrated an existing 84,000 square foot office building (100 Broadview) into the base of the building (shown above). Hullmark recently purchased this office space for $11.3 million, with the goal of repositioning it into a “best-in class office building on the east side.” Because of everything that’s happening, Hullmark also sees tremendous upside potential in this part of town.


However, investment in the Riverside area is happening at all scales. If you take a stroll down Saulter Street you’ll find a clever adaptive reuse of an existing commercial/industrial building into a residence (shown above). Completed by architech Richard Librach, it’s a marvellous example of how older buildings can be reinvigorated with new life. It’s something we love seeing happen.

Riverside, like many of Toronto’s inner city neighbourhoods, is undergoing significant change. Queen Street East is being redeveloped with midrise buildings and new independent businesses are continually opening up shop. At the same time, the history and charm of Riverside has remained untouched. And that’s how it should be. City building is a fine balance between preservation and progress.

Images (in order): FlickrblogTO; Streetcar Developments; Hullmark

Special Thanks to www.thedirt.co a social platform to help consumers find condos for doing an article on Riverside.

Author: Brandon G. Donnelly

Original Blog link: http://blog.thedirt.co/get-to-know-riverside/

Riverside Historical Walk

Sat August 17th 2013 at 2:00pm take a FREE History Walk in Riverside.

Join us in exploring the Historic part of Queen Street East between the DVP and just past Degrassi. Riverside Toronto has a rich history dating back to the late 1700s. The Queen Street Bridge over the Don River was one of the few crossings, making Queen Street the main East-West artery of Toronto. Get the details on some of the oldest buildings in Toronto to insider info on local anecdotes that make the Riverside a district steeped in stories.

Jane's walk image

Riverside Walkers during Jane’s Walk 2013

Led by Riverside Aficionado, Ron Fletcher –   former Riverside BIA Chair, one of the original founders of the Riverdale Historical Society, Heritage Toronto guide, Jane’s Walk walk leader, and ‘Over the Don’ author.

Ron Fletcher

Ron Fletcher by the 2nd largest trophy in the world housed in the Royal Canadian Curling Club, in Riverside.
Photo taken by, Riverdale Historical Society.

Here are the stop destinations:

Start Location: Ralph Thornton Centre
Meet us here, and watch out for the red umbrellas.
Second Stop: Beginning of Degrassi Street
The street that inspired the Cult-Classic Degrassi TV Series.
Third Stop: Maison Caras
Build in 1905, as the Bank of Commerce.
Fourth Stop: The Opera House
Former Vaudeville hot spot, it maintains it’s character as a location for indie music.
Fifth Stop: 717 Queen St. E.
Former Rising Sun Inn.
Sixth Stop: The Royal Canadian Curling Club
World’s second largest Trophy in the world.
Seventh Stop: New Broadview Hotel/Jilly’s
Inspired by Romanesque Architecture, has had colourful history, and it’s currently home to exotic entertainment Jilly’s.
Ninth Stop: Former Location of Sunlight Baseball Park
Home of Toronto’s First Baseball Park.
Tenth Stop: Riverside Bridge
Overlooking the original site of The Scadding Cabin.

For more info and registration, visit: http://riversideto-historical-walk.eventbrite.com/