Cabbagetown According To…

SEan O'Donovan from CRA board

Sean O’Donovan Joined the board of the CRA in the Fall of 2019 and currently heads up communications for the Association. He and his wife, Amanda, moved from Markham to Cabbagetown in 2013. 

Recently retired, Sean worked for many years in marketing leadership roles at various technology firms around Markham and the GTA.

Best place in Cabbagetown for a bite to eat …
That’s tough because there are so many. But a new Indian place called Haldi opened up recently just south of Wellesley on the west side and it’s the real deal (hailing from the UK where Indian is practically the national dish, I feel solidly qualified to say this!). Try it out, you won’t be disappointed. 

Cabbagetown needs … the City to come up with a way to clean leave debris off the streets at the end of Fall. That stuff seems to stays around all year and it’s a PITA!  

Favourite block …  Ah there are so many. I love Amelia, east of Metcalfe all the way to Sumach. And, like James Davie said in the last newsletter, Carlton East of Metcalfe is so majestic with all its lovely old mansions from yesteryear. I’m also partial to Metcalfe from Carlton to Winchester (my hood!). It’s so close to all the amenities of Parliament and its just chock full of great neighbours – who really stepped up to help us out when we had to do 23 days of self isolation recently!

Best public space – I have to second James Davie again, when he chose the Necropolis. It’s a beautiful space to walk around in any season. It’s just so calm and peaceful and steeped in so much history. 

Favourite store – Every store is dear to us in Cabbagetown as it’s a bit of a challenging retail environment. However, right now two retailers stand out to me particularly for their valiant efforts to keep delivering in a crisis and that’s Kim and Spruce and Regina at Labour of Love. They  both deserve our support! 

Cabbagetown pet peeve – Right now, it’s watching (some) people walk around Cabbagetown NOT RESPECTING PEOPLE’S EFFORTS TO PRACTICE PROPER SOCIAL DISTANCING. How hard is it for people to get the message??

Cabbagetown’s best kept secret – The croissants from Absolute bakery. They changed their recipe a while back to go full butter and now they’re every bit as good as any others you might find in CTown, and a lot cheaper too!

Best reason to join the Cabbagetown Residents Association (CRA) – Joining the board at the CRA has helped me to tap into what’s going on in Cabbagetown and find ways I can lend a hand on local issues and activities like 233 Carlton, the CYC and the CRA newsletter.

 

James Davie, CRA board memberJames Davie joined the board of the CRA in the Fall of 2019. He’s lived in Cabbagetown since 2014 with his partner Mark and their two children.  He runs a design firm, under his own name, out of his home on Sackville Street, just south of Carlton.

Best place in Cabbagetown for a bite to eat …
Qi Sushi, which is a cute little Japanese restaurant on Gerrard at the bottom of Sackville, if you don’t already know it. Their Maki rolls are HUGE!

Cabbagetown needs … Better and more regular sweeping of residential streets. It would be great if the city could come up with a better way to clear all the leaves in the spring.

Favourite block …  Carlton between Metcalfe & Sackville. I just love all the majestic mansion houses along this stretch.

Best public space –
Necropolis cemetery. It’s a calm and beautiful place to just wander and be alone with your thoughts.

Favourite store – Akasha Art Projects – it’s the place to go if you need really special and unique customized framing that focuses on your interior design and enhancing your art.

Cabbagetown pet peeve – Litter in people’s yards. C’mon guys, just clean up won’t you. It takes a so little effort!

Cabbagetown’s best kept secret – It’s a secret!

Best reason to join the Cabbagetown Residents Association (CRA) – It helps you stay abreast of what’s going on in your immediate hood and if you want to get involved you can feed your inner passion for community activism.

 

Bryan Hewitt and Steffen Ploeger were tied for first place in the 2018 Cabbagetown Holiday Lights Contest(Paloma Ellard and Matthew Scott also came in first.)

Best place in Cabbagetown for a bite to eat … That’s a hard one! But Cranberries is our go-to! Love Ruth and the Team!

Cabbagetown needs … A bigger and better LCBO! 🥂

Favourite block … Sumach, across from Riverdale Farm. 🐄

Best public space … Riverdale Park West—an amazing view and great place to social with others in the ‘hood.

Favourite store … Mikasa—best home decor selection and prices.

Cabbagetown pet peeve … When people park improperly on our streets and cause there to be less street parking than we already have. 🤣

Cabbagetown’s best kept secret … The Necropolis—explore all of the nooks and crannies.

Best reason to join the Cabbagetown Residents Association (CRA) … To stay connected to our special and unique community.

Gina Dineen is long-time volunteer with the Forsythia Festival as our MC extraordinaire. Join her this year on May 5 at Wellesley Park!

Best place in Cabbagetown for a bite to eat … A very tough question! It used to be the House on Parliament, which is loved for its amazing atmosphere and awesome menu ( I used to devour the Steak’n Mushroom pie ) , but now that my husband and I have adopted a vegan diet… we need a vegan restaurant … perhaps called “Cabbagetown” … anyone?

Cabbagetown needs … see above plus a venue for Dancing to Live Music!

Favourite block …
Sumach to Parliament, Carlton to Spruce… lived here 40 years and that’s where most of my friends are (OK, I know it’s technically more that one block).


Best public space …
Tie: 1.Sprucecourt schoolyard – well protected from the street (safe for budding cyclists) and home to neighbourhood little leagues and 2. Riverdale West Flats where dogs and owners gather to run and play, rain or shine.

Favourite store … Hands down: No Frills! I shop daily and the specials help me decide what to cook for dinner … it’s also a great place to chat with neighbours and catch up on local news and Ambal Trading (favourite for curry leaves and spices).

Cabbagetown pet peeve …  I can’t stand the concrete sonar tube memorials in our parks. They deteriorate badly, present a tripping hazard and are ugly! Why not bring back classic flat brass plaques? Easier to mow around and safer for everyone.

Cabbagetown’s best kept secret … KClub! Their Summer Camps rock, they have a fantastic party room for rent and offer before- and after-school programs during the school year and Cabbagetown Youth Centre that offers $2/class Step Wednesdays and Sundays for adults as well as tons of programming for local kids.

Robin LeBlanc (@thethirstywench on Twitter) is a freelance writer and has been living on Winchester Street for two years.

Best place in Cabbagetown for a bite to eat … So many places, but I can often be seen having a club sandwich with an amazing beer at the House on Parliament or picking up some ingredients for a homemade meal at Epicure. If it’s a simple snack I’m in the mood for, Daniel et Daniel’s mini chicken chimichangas are the way to go! Oh jeez, and Thai Room for some amazing Pad Thai!

Cabbagetown needs …  More stores and cafes that are open late.

Favourite block … Where the action is on Parliament, from Carlton to Spruce. Seeing all of the amazing shops and all the people going about their day is nothing short of invigorating. A VERY close second, however, is Metcalfe from Winchester to Carlton. That place turns into a theme park come Hallowe’en. 

Best public space …  Riverdale Park West, of course! A lovely place for a relaxing picnic and a chance to do some quality dog watching!

Favourite store … Again, too many to fully list here, but Epicure is definitely one of my favourites for every day or special occasions. And I love seeing what new glasses designs Face Furniture Optical are showcasing. I got my sunglasses there and wear them often! 

Cabbagetown pet peeve …  The odd store that just remains vacant, occasionally being used as a candidate HQ when an election comes around. I’d very much like to see those empty spaces become something.

Cabbagetown’s best kept secret … The beautiful and quiet streets to go down for a nice walk at night. Also being a roughly five minute walk from nearly anything you need!

Best reason to join the Cabbagetown Residents Association (CRA) … To stay up to date on all of the community goings-on and upcoming events!

Jodi Thibodeau is the owner of JoLT390 Photography; he lives at Wellesley and Sackville, and runs his business in Cabbagetown, as well.

Best place in Cabbagetown for a bite to eat …  I am torn, and it’s because of my passion for mushrooms! The Irv has a TO DIE FOR mushroom grilled cheese then F’Amelia and Salt and Tobacco have equally delicious Fungi pizza. Yum!

Cabbagetown needs … a vegan restaurant.

Favourite block … My Wellesley/ Sackville ‘hood is pretty awesome. It is chock full of lovely people who have become dear friends.

Best public space … Wellesley Park. My dog Dori voted for this one.

Favourite store … Home Hardware. I have always been able to find that one little thing I forgot at Home Depot, but with a friendly face.

Cabbagetown pet peeve … Parking on the narrower streets, especially in the winter when snow piles up on the sides. Clearly, nothing can be done, but still a pet peeve.

Cabbagetown’s best-kept secret … Salt and Tobacco pizzeria delivers through Uber eats and they have a vegan option for my partner. Changed our lives (and waist lines)

Best reason to join the Cabbagetown Residents Association (CRA) … As with any association, it gives a forum for all the individuals in the region to voice opinion, views and ideas.

Paloma Ellard and Matthew Scott were first-place winners in the 2018 Cabbagetown Holiday Lights Contest. They credit their top vote-getting to the fact their cute dog, Panda, was in the picture of their Hillcrest Street home overlooking Wellesley Park. 

Best place in Cabbagetown for a bite to eat … House on Parliament: cozy in the winter, beautiful patios for the summer and the food is always delicious. Kan Pai (at the northeast corner of Parliament and Carlton) is really grea,t too. 

Cabbagetown needs …  an art gallery or a bowling alley! Actually an art gallery with a bowling alley seems like a winning idea…

Favourite block …  our block, Hillcrest Park! We love living on the park and it was a great reason to get a dog. 

Best public space …  Broadcast Lane’s graffiti between Carlton and Winchester, west Parliament. Love public art in the neighbourhood. 

Favourite store … Labour of Love. Regina is the best. Not only does she have great taste (which makes finding special gifts in her store easy) but she really values this community.  We are lucky to have her.

Cabbagetown pet peeve…  Nimbyism, dog poo and the fact the city doesn’t clear our lanes when it snows.

Cabbagetown’s best kept secret … the easy access to Brickworks through Wellesley Park.

Best reason to join the Cabbagetown Residents Association (CRA) …   Support the Forsythia Festival! Our favourite weekend of the year. 

Annette Robertson and her family live near Sackville-Amelia.

Best place in Cabbagetown for a bite to eat… Hey Lucy! Kids eat free on Tuesdays and the food is as delicious for grown-ups as it is for children.

Cabbagetown needs …  a fish monger.

Favourite block …  Metcalfe, between Carlton and Winchester. The old brick between the sidewalk and street, mature trees, and majestic Victorians always take my breath away.

Best public space …  The Necropolis, for its history and paths that double as a safe place for children to cycle/scooter.

Favourite store … Labour of Love. My husband has gotten me a piece of jewelry by local artists there every year they’ve been in business.

Cabbagetown pet peeve …  The neighbourhood’s inability to keep its restaurants in business. We’ve seen too many close in the 17-odd years we’ve been here.

Cabbagetown’s best kept secret … All the laneways and side streets that boast the same calibre of architectural gems as our signature streets.

Best reason to join the Cabbagetown Residents Association (CRA) …  To give a voice to the variety of issues facing our community, from safety to quality of life. 

Tyler Fleming has been a CRA board director since 2015 and is the founder and organizer or our annual Cabbagetown Holiday Lights contest.

Best place in Cabbagetown for a bite to eat … The House on Parliament is my go-to for dinner or brunch. For good sushi in a quiet spot, I go to Ki on Gerrard.

Cabbagetown needs …  More people coming to businesses and more commercial activity on Parliament closer to Gerrard.

Favourite block …  The stretch of Carlton heading to Riverdale Park that contains the old brick paving.

Best public space …  The Don River Valley Park and the Lower Don Trail are so close and just a great way to get a bit of nature in the city.

Favourite store … Steak and Chops or Epicure.

Cabbagetown pet peeve …  People who don’t shovel to keep the sidewalks clear in winter.

Cabbagetown’s best-kept secret …  The hidden park in the area bordered by Sackville, Spruce and Carlton.

Best reason to join the Cabbagetown Residents Association (CRA) …  To stay on top of what’s happening in the neighbourhood, contribute to community discussions and support great local community initiatives.

 

Arianne Shaffer is a Cabbagetowner who lives on Sackville Street with her family and is one of more than 100 residents who volunteers for the Forsythia Festival on the first Sunday of May.

Best place for bite to eat: Salt and Tobacco – unusual name for delicious pizza – and our son works there part-time! Too bad they are only open at night… amazing “funghi” and a vegan one, too!

Cabbagetown needs: a bookstore – and another bookstore – and a third bookstore!

Favourite block: walking up my street (Sackville) turning onto Spruce and then onto Sumach for my morning walks to Riverdale Farm!

Best public space: the Riverdale Farm and Regent Park’s playground.

Favourite store: Lennie’s, Labour of Love and Blooming Flower Bar (all things healthy, gifts for friends and flowers for me – please!)

Cabbagetown pet peeve: other pets off leash!

Cabbagetown’s best-kept secret: my choir – City Choir! We rehearse at Dixon Hall (Bleeker and Carlton) on Tuesday nights. But also, my youngest daughter wants me to add that we don’t grow cabbages in Cabbagetown – shhhhhhh!

Reason to join the CRA: involved, caring neighbours trying to make the ‘hood a better place – thank you!

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