Mother’s Day Guide: 10 ways to treat your mom to a memorable day out
Your mom loves you, so she’ll no doubt coo over a standard Mother’s Day bouquet. However, you can really show the depth of your filial devotion by giving a gift that involves spending time together. Below, ten decadent experiences around the city that will make her feel pampered—and will make you look good.
Relax at a hammam
Toronto is full of high-end spas, but many of the packages cater to couples or girls’ days out. Dutiful sons wanting to treat mom to a day of pampering can head to Hammam Spa on King West, where the co-ed steam room is a haven of marble tiles and eucalyptus-scented mist. A session starts at $55, while more involved Mother’s Day specials range from $230 to $390.
Hamman Spa, 602 King St. W., hammamspa.ca, 416-366-4772
Make some one-of-a-kind jewellery
At Anice, jewellery maker and shop owner Brittany Hopkins can help you and your mom make custom baubles out of vintage accessories and semi-precious stones. The Mother’s Day workshop will be held in the sunny area outside her Kensington Market shop from 10 a.m. to noon and includes mimosas and treats. $20 plus the cost of materials; private workshops also are available for $40 per person for 2 hours.
Anice, 167 Augusta Ave., anicejewellery.com, 647-501-5526
Go for high tea
The Royal York has served high tea in the Library Bar every weekend afternoon since 1929 so it’s safe to say they know what they’re doing. Highlights of the menu include lobster and mango salad finger sandwiches, pastry swans filled with Chantilly cream and a long list of gourmet loose leaf teas. Before leaving, take a a stroll through the hotel’s rooftop herb garden and bee apiary. $35, or $60 with a smoked salmon canapés and a glass of Moët.
The Royal York Hotel, 100 Front St. W., fairmont.com, 416-860-5004
Pick a bouquet
The outdoor Toronto Flower Market, held on the second Saturday of every month from May through September, sells fresh-cut, potted and bedding flower varieties sourced directly from Ontario greenhouses. Treat your mom to a drink from the on-site café and stroll with her as she chooses her own bouquet.
May 11, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. 99 Sudbury St., torontoflowermarket.ca
Plan an old-fashioned picnic
Now that spring has finally arrived, the city’s sun-starved population is ready to picnic. My Everyday Gourmet offers custom baskets containing a few savoury lunch items, fresh fruit and dessert, plus linens and dishware. A sample menu: cold roasted tarragon chicken, vegetables with herb dip, cookies and strawberries. Starts at $75 for two people; $150 for four.
My Everyday Gourmet, myeverydaygourmet.com, 416-451-3520.
Take a cooking class
Locavores head to Culinarium to buy gourmet, sustainable foodstuffs, but the midtown shop store also runs popular classes covering homemade pasta, pastry, sausage, jellies, and greens. Each starts with an info session on local produce, followed by a cooking lesson and a sit-down meal. Sound too taxing? Wine and cheese tastings are also available. $70—$100 .
Culinarium, 705 Mount Pleasant Rd., culinarium.ca, 647-430-7004
Take a culture-filled trip
This year’s edition of Niagara-on-the-Lake’s annual Shaw Festival includes mother-daughter tale The Light in the Piazza, as well as Broadway classic Guys and Dolls and Lady Windermere’s Fan, the satirical romp that made Oscar Wilde an overnight success. $40–$118.
Festival runs until October. shawfest.com, 1-800-511-SHAW
Learn the basics of butchering
The Healthy Butcher holds hands-on introductions to sausage-making, preparing a whole fish and, for the truly adventurous, butchering an entire pig. Perfect for the mom who adores Julia Child and has aspirations of deboning whole chickens with panache, à la Jacques Pépin. Most of the classes are held at the Eglinton location and they sell out quickly. $70–$125
The Healthy Butcher, 565 Queen St. W. and 298 Eglinton Ave. W., thehealthybutcher.com, 416-674-2642
Gorge yourselves silly
For a more elaborate spin on the tried-and-true dinner out, check out one of Toronto’s ever-expanding selection of tasting menus. At between 15 and 20 courses Yours Truly’s is the city’s longest, and each dish is brought to your table by cooks eager to describe it in detail. $85—$100, plus $55 for wine pairings.
Yours Truly, 229 Ossington Ave., yours-truly.ca, 416-533-2243
Take her to a concert
Broken Social Scene may be more your thing, but you can show your appreciation by accompanying your mom to one of her faves. A few options: Michael Kaeshammer brings his jazz, blues, and boogie-woogie piano stylings to Massey Hall May 25, while Pink Martini—the group known for their upbeat multilingual repertoire of pop, classical, jazz and big band—play Roy Thomson Hall in late June, backed the Toronto Symphony Orchestra.
Michael Kaeshammer, $20–$60. Massey Hall, 178 Victoria St., masseyhall.com, 416-872-4255
Pink Martini with the TSO, $40–$100. Roy Thomson Hall, 60 Simcoe St., roythomson.com, 416-593-4828