Coming this summer: Toronto Taste and Taste of Toronto, which are not the same thing

Coming this summer: Toronto Taste and Taste of Toronto, which are not the same thing

Lamb bolognese crostini from Mark McEwan’s Fabbrica, served at the Taste of Toronto kick-off party. (Image: Taste of Toronto)

Toronto’s event calendar is so crammed with food festivals that it’s becoming difficult to keep them straight. Two upcoming summer fests aren’t helping much: they’ve somehow ended up with basically the exact same name, despite being totally separate. The organizers of Toronto Taste and Taste of Toronto seem to have recognized the futility of trying to differentiate themselves from one another. Earlier today, they announced an impromptu cross-promotional partnership, with proceeds from both events going to food-rescue program Second Harvest.

Toronto Taste can claim first dibs to the alliterative moniker: it’s been holding its annual food party for over two decades. This year’s edition takes place on the evening of June 8 at lakeside Corus Quay, where guests will be able to sample hors d’oeuvres from Buca’s Rob Gentile, Scaramouche’s Carolyn Reid and over 50 other Toronto chefs. (Here’s our slideshow from last year’s event). At $250, the tickets aren’t cheap, but they include all the food and drink you can stomach, which, depending on your appetite, could make the price a bargain.

For those unwilling to blow a quarter months’ rent on a single night of gluttony, a $30 ticket to one of Taste of Toronto’s lunch or dinner sessions may be more your speed (food and drink aren’t included, though, which means the costs could rack up). The four-day event, which will be held at Fort York from July 24-27, is the inaugural Canadian edition of an international food fest that’s been hailed by TIME as one of the world’s best. The lineup of Toronto chefs is also impressive: among the 16 confirmed participants are some big foodie names, including Momofuku’s David Chang, Patria’s Stuart Cameron and Top Chef Canada host Mark McEwan. There will also be culinary workshops, cooking classes and a festival market where 50 Toronto food purveyors will be selling all kinds of delicious artisanal goods.

Frankly, both events sound equally spectacular, which should make choosing between them a painful process for non-high-rolling food fanatics. There are worse problems, we suppose.

Toronto Taste. $250. June 8, Corus Quay, 25 Dockside Dr.,

Taste of Toronto. $30. July 24-27, Fort York, 100 Garrison Rd.,