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What went down at Toronto Life’s exclusive dinner at Market & Co., Upper Canada’s fancy new food market

By Toronto Life| Photography by Ryan Emberley

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Inside Market & Co., a new 40,000-square-foot food hall inside Upper Canada
Food & Drink

Inside Market & Co., a new 40,000-square-foot food hall inside Upper Canada

Earlier this week, Toronto Life and Market & Co., Upper Canada’s massive new food market, hosted a special dinner for a lucky group of people. After arriving in style (Limos! Champagne!) the attendees made their way to Kitchen and Co., the market’s demo kitchen, for welcome cocktails, cheese and charcuterie from MidiCi The Neapolitan Pizza Co. and freshly shucked oysters from Pier 87 Fish Market & Grill. And that was just the beginning: what followed was a landslide of delicious dishes from the market’s restaurants and merchants, each paired with wine from The Wine Shop & Tasting Room. After dinner, the group took a much-needed stroll and toured the 20-merchant market before settling back down for a dessert of macarons, “deconstructed” cupcakes and ice wine. At the end of the evening, the full and happy crew stuffed themselves back into their rides (oh hey, more champagne!) where they found swag bags chock full of fun surprises. Here’s a look at the evening’s events, from the cheesy start to its sweet finish.

The owner of Leslieville’s Ceili Cottage and Guinness Record-holding shucker extraordinaire, Patrick McMurray, was kept busy opening bivalves:

What went down at Toronto Life's exclusive dinner at Market & Co., Upper Canada's fancy new food market

And MidiCi The Neapolitan Pizza Company had everyone’s meat and cheese needs covered:

What went down at Toronto Life's exclusive dinner at Market & Co., Upper Canada's fancy new food market

Food writer and YouTuber Claudia McNeilly was in attendance. She’s pictured here with Chief Bosompra of Undisposable:

What went down at Toronto Life's exclusive dinner at Market & Co., Upper Canada's fancy new food market

So were Jeffrey Buttle, Christi Himmelheber and Justin Harris:

What went down at Toronto Life's exclusive dinner at Market & Co., Upper Canada's fancy new food market

After the last oyster had been shucked, everyone sat down for a family-style dinner. Of course a toast was in order:

What went down at Toronto Life's exclusive dinner at Market & Co., Upper Canada's fancy new food market

Baskets of freshly baked bread from Baby Point–based Our Farm Organic Bakery were brought out first, along with flavoured oil from Newmarket Olive Oil Co. for dipping:

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What went down at Toronto Life's exclusive dinner at Market & Co., Upper Canada's fancy new food market

It was followed by a mixed green salad and this creamy, dill-y potato salad from Vince’s Market:

What went down at Toronto Life's exclusive dinner at Market & Co., Upper Canada's fancy new food market

Amano Kitchen served their Little Ears, fresh orecchiette with roasted cauliflower, mint-garlic breadcrumbs and spicy bomba:

What went down at Toronto Life's exclusive dinner at Market & Co., Upper Canada's fancy new food market

Amano Kitchen’s Arturas Zuta told the crowd a bit about the dish itself:

What went down at Toronto Life's exclusive dinner at Market & Co., Upper Canada's fancy new food market

Ray Johnston, Retail and Experience Manager at Peller Estates presented wines from The Wine Shop and Tasting Room, part of the Andrew Peller family:

What went down at Toronto Life's exclusive dinner at Market & Co., Upper Canada's fancy new food market

Speaking of wine, here’s the lineup. All of the bottles were supplied by The Wine Shop & Tasting Room. And FloralEscence, also located in the market, provided fresh flowers for all of the tables:

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What went down at Toronto Life's exclusive dinner at Market & Co., Upper Canada's fancy new food market

There was a lot of serious eating (and drinking) in between merchant talks:

What went down at Toronto Life's exclusive dinner at Market & Co., Upper Canada's fancy new food market

 

What went down at Toronto Life's exclusive dinner at Market & Co., Upper Canada's fancy new food market

What went down at Toronto Life's exclusive dinner at Market & Co., Upper Canada's fancy new food market

What went down at Toronto Life's exclusive dinner at Market & Co., Upper Canada's fancy new food market

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What went down at Toronto Life's exclusive dinner at Market & Co., Upper Canada's fancy new food market

Union Chicken served their OG-Style Plate, buttermilk-breaded boneless thighs with habanero sauce, black pepper gravy and maple-honey syrup:

What went down at Toronto Life's exclusive dinner at Market & Co., Upper Canada's fancy new food market

Up next: sausages stuffed with jalapeno and blue cheese from Seed to Sausage Meatery:

What went down at Toronto Life's exclusive dinner at Market & Co., Upper Canada's fancy new food market

As if there was a need for more meat, these Montreal-style smoked meat sandwiches came out next:

What went down at Toronto Life's exclusive dinner at Market & Co., Upper Canada's fancy new food market

It was around this time that the group took a tour of the entire market:

What went down at Toronto Life's exclusive dinner at Market & Co., Upper Canada's fancy new food market

And chatted with some of the merchants:

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What went down at Toronto Life's exclusive dinner at Market & Co., Upper Canada's fancy new food market

Good news for Newmarket’s soft-serve fans—Sweet Jesus is here:

What went down at Toronto Life's exclusive dinner at Market & Co., Upper Canada's fancy new food market

For dessert, Amadeus Patisserie provided macarons and Bake Three Fifty these “deconstructed cupcake” parfaits:

What went down at Toronto Life's exclusive dinner at Market & Co., Upper Canada's fancy new food market

And just a tad more champagne on the ride home, because why not?

What went down at Toronto Life's exclusive dinner at Market & Co., Upper Canada's fancy new food market

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