Brar Sweets and Vegetarian Restaurant

 199 Advance Boulevard Unit 12

2646 Islington Ave
416 745 4449

755 Dundas Street West #A4
905-848- 3933

Located in the “other” Little India at Albion and Islington, Brar Sweets and Vegetarian Restaurant serves exclusively Indian and vegetarian fare. Eighty percent of the restaurant showcases traditional Indian squares (i.e sweets) which are colourful, dense, decadent squares made with condensed milk, tons of sugar, sometimes chick pea flour, and cream. These colourful treats are excellent but drink a lot of water after since they are very sweet and rich I’ve tried many before). The decorative tin foil covering these treats is edible so don’t worry.

Brar Sweets contains about 10-15 tables and decor is minimalist and cosy in classic beige with many mirrors. No kitschy artwork or photos. They specialize in sweets and thali dishes (thalis are one large plate with a sampling of many dishes), as well as takeout.

Some of the dishes they offer includes 3 types of cheese curries: Saag Paneer (cheese), a cheese curry with red/green peppers, and mattar paneer (curried peas and cheese) in a sweet tomato gravy. Other popular dishes include bengan bhartha (eggplant), daal (lentils), aloo gobi (cauliflower, potato, and onions), channa masala (chickpea curry), YUMMY kofta balls (dumplings in a thick and creamy yogourt curry). If you opt for the Thali dish, you may choose any salad and pick the pickled lemons and carrots, they’re excellent. You may also want to pick fresh Naan, Roti, or Pilau (rice) or all three. Food is to “die for” delicious, fresh, piping hot, and exploding with flavour, texture, and colour.

The sweets are colourful and decorative, that you do not want to eat them, just look in amazement.

Vegetarian samosas or Vegetarian pakoras are an excellent starter and are best hot (with tamarind or coriander sauce). Complete meals under $10 including all taxes. No need to tip, but highly recommended since service is always fast and courteous.

Soma Chocolatemaker

55 Mill Street.
(1 block South of Front St., 1 block east of Parliament St.)
Located in Building 48 beside Bergo and Soulpepper Theatre.
( 2 buildings East of out old location.)

416 815-7662

Soma Chocolatemaker has a small selection of delicious homemade ice-cream. They always have Chocolate and vanilla, and 4 other flavours revolve (sometimes they’ll have rhubarb ice cream!).

-Erin Toole

Madeleine’s Cherry Pie and Ice Cream

1087 Bathurst Street
East Side of Bathurst , just south of Dupont
416 537 3131

I was very excited to spot the Kawartha Dairy logo as I was driving up Bathurst Street one evening, and so I had to investigate. Relatively new to the ice cream scene, Madeleines is a quaint and friendly place which has been here for almost 2 years. This is the only place I know of in the city that sells Kawartha Dairy ice cream, which is, in many people’s opinion (including mine), the best ice cream in the world. (If you are unfamiliar with Kawartha Dairy, the original dairy is in Bobcaygeon and their ice cream is made the old fashioned way with only the freshest of milk and cream). If you’ve never heard of Kawartha Dairy ice cream, you must try it! Check out Madeleines this summer – you will certainly want to go back again and again!

– Erin Toole


38 Wellington Street East
416 364 8478

Just opened last spring (2005), Solferino is another gelato place (yay!) with about 20 different flavours, and they keep adding new flavours! Everything is made fresh, on the premises (in the back) and the gelato you are eating was made either yesterday or today. They’ve got the classic flavours (most recently, I had Dulce de Leche, while my friend had Oreo…funny how those are considered “classics”…), and some more unusual flavours (guava, blackberry, lulo, guanabana (two south-American fruits)). Try the avocado flavour!
The owner is from Columbia, and she had 5 successful stores with the same name in Bogota before deciding to test it out here. So far, so good! Go try it!

-Erin Toole

Sicilian Ice Cream Company

710 College St.
416 531-7716


In the heart of Little Italy, The Sicilian Ice Cream Company has been serving delicious home-made ice cream, for close to 40 years. The ice cream comes in traditional Italian flavours, such as nocciola, zabaione and baccio as well as the “classics” (chocolate, vanilla). The ice creams are made with milk, with the exception of the Lemon Ice and Raspberry Ice, both of which are fat free and non-dairy. Try the tiramisu flavour, a delicious combination of Italy’s two most famous deserts!

– Erin Toole

Hollywood Gelato

1640 Bayview Avenue
(a few blocks south of Eglinton – look for the duck on the bike).
416 544-9829

This place has over 20 delicious flavours of soft homemade Italian gelati. Fruit flavours include strawberry, raspberry, multi- berries, citrus, etc. Non-fruit flavours include coconut, pistachio, Mars, tiramisu, chocolate peanut butter… They all taste authentic and fresh. This is my preferred place to go for gelato – fewer flavours than La Paloma make it less overwhelming when deciding what you want, and the prices are a bit cheaper.

Reviewed by Erin Toole

La Paloma Gelateria & Cafe

1357 St Clair W.

416 656-2340

La Paloma is one of “the places” in Toronto for homemade gelato. They have over 50 different flavours (all names are in Italian!) at any one time, all made onsite. They all taste amazing and have that soft and airy texture found only in gelato. Seasonal flavours include fico (fig) or marron glace (glazed chesnut). This place is very busy in the summer, expect to wait before being served — but the wait is well worth it!

Reviewed by Erin Toole

Dutch Dreams [by: Erin]

78 Vaughan Road
416 656-6959


This place was introduced to me by Mark (not Mark Aaron Polger) when we were in grade 9 and has been a Toronto landmark for almost twenty years. Ice cream is served the “dutch way” with whipped cream and fruit on top. They have awesome homemade ice cream (over fifty flavours), gigantic sundaes, (check out the baked Alaska!)… Truly an ice cream lover’s fantasy. Choosing what to order can be a difficult decision. You’ll go back again and again so you can try everything on the menu!

– Erin Toole