Restaurants & Bars

Toronto Underground Market pt 2

atomeyes | Oct 23, 201105:09 AM

We went to the second TUM (and our second TUM as well) last night. A quick summary now, with pictures and a bigger write-up coming by noon.

The event: it was still in the same room at the Brickworks (the one with the kilns) but they made better use of the area. For example, what was one of the biggest draws - La Carnita - was tucked down one of the aisles between the kilns. That allowed a huge line-up that didn't take over the entire event. The event itself was less crowded than the first one and we manage to stay from 6 until after 8 without feeling claustrophobic. It looks like the organizers listened to attendee feedback, since they now had large signs clearly indicating what (most) vendors were selling and who the vendors were.

Problems: since CHers love to wallow in negativity, I'll address the problems early in my post. the biggest issue was the popularity of some vendors. La Carnita, the jalapeno grilled cheese vendor and Popover Girl had ridiculously long lines. That's a testament, methinks, to their popularity, but no one digs waiting in line for 15+ minutes for food. One way around this is, space permitting, to have more vendors for the next one, but it still won't quell attendees' demands for yummy tacos, etc. Otherwise, any other complaint I'd have would only be nitpicking.

The food: it was mostly a different menu from the 1st TUM, with some repeat vendors and some new vendors. We were pretty darned stuffed after 2 hours of grazing, waiting in lines and eating. I will post a complete food list in a few hours (wanted to give early CHers something to read with their morning Cheerios), but there were lots of interesting food options. It was impossible to eat everything from every vendor (and there were 4 of us sharing the duties), so I know that my pending list will miss a few vendors and someone will fill in the blanks.

The booze: nice alcohol selection. It was great to see the beer vendors kicked up a notch, with Stonehammer, Mill St and Spearhead all with booths. There was a hard alcohol booth as well (I forget which spirit was serves) and I know wine was available somewhere (not sure which wine, but I assume it was local).

Atmosphere: sometimes its nice to forget that you're in Toronto the Grumpy. If you've traveled around North America, you may agree with my gentle potshot at Toronto when I say that we have a reputation of being slightly grumpy, self-absorbed and not overly friendly. Not so last night. lots of strangers talking to strangers, lots of people making room for others to walk, lots of kindness all around. It was actually really nice to feel the love in a room full of 1500 people. that's what really made the event - the people working the booths, the attendees, the volunteers and the organizers. Everyone was there for the love of food and for the love of Toronto. Not to be sappy, but it was really great to see friendliness flow.

Pics will be posted shortly. Have a good morning.


Want to stay up to date with this post? Sign Up Now ›
Log In or Sign Up to comment

Recommended From CH