Stomach Stuffers: Toronto’s best prepared food and pantry suppliers
Adam Hasham left his career as a high-flying Singapore banker to launch Hurrier, an efficient courier service that has managed to arrange exclusive deals with trendy grub spots like Porchetta and Co., Grand Electric, Burger’s Priest and Banh Mi Boys. Log on to Hurrier’s website, place your order and a bike messenger delivers it faster than if you’d lined up yourself. From $4.50 for delivery. Usehurrier.com.
Carol Belmonte is an evangelist for cleanses. She did her first a decade ago in India, and now she’s out to convert us all. At her Leslieville shop, Belmonte Raw, she uses organic products to create a euphoria-inducing selection of raw juices, entrées and treats. They’re available à la carte at the store, or whole meal plans can be delivered to your door, including Total Reset, a $2,000, 30-day detox for the fanatically virtuous. 1022 Queen St. E., 647-340-1218.
Hosting a weekday gathering always seems like a good idea, until the week begins and it becomes impossible to pull off in the few short hours between work, Netflix and sleep. Fortunately, there’s All the Best, which is the Willy Wonka Factory of faked home cookery. The store’s selection ranges from mini–tea cakes, fruit tartlets and savoury shortbreads to frozen just-like-Mom’s staples such as chicken pot pie. The famous mac and cheese combines gruyère, parmigiano-reggiano, and four-year-old Maple Dale cheddar. It heats up all browned and bubbling, as though a scullery maid had been cooking all day. 1101 Yonge St., 416-928-3330; 483 Church St. 416-944-1749.
Arriving home to a pantry stocked with goodies from McEwan is like opening a hotel mini-bar: it’s full of exotic indulgences that are a little pricey, but worth it. On short notice, the store will fill a cart with specialty items exactly to customer specifications and deliver to the front door. The range is dizzying: exotic produce (long Sicilian artichokes, sweet Spanish mandarins), small-batch dry goods (bottled water distilled from the sap of Quebec maple trees, yogurt made from water buffalo milk), prepared meals, and nearly-impossible-to-source delicacies like Australian crocodile meat and Lankaaster, the local Dutch-style cheese just crowned Supreme Global Champion. $25 for delivery. 38 Karl Fraser Rd., 416-444-6262, ext. 228.
There are people who love what’s sold at farmers’ markets but can do without the drum circles and Aran sweaters. Three days a week, Zach Weingarten and his girlfriend, Jackie Whiting, source produce from the city’s markets for their customers’ shopping lists. Weingarten has cultivated relationships with the suppliers and, two to three days before market, gets the scoop on the freshest offerings, then uploads the intel to his website where his customers place their orders. He collects the best of the best and delivers your personalized basket using eco-friendly transport. Delivery $10. Foodstory.ca.