Downtown Gluten Free Bakery Offers Up Tasty Treats…and More Importantly, a Well Sought After Selection!
Gluten. If you’re like me this is your enemy. The stomach bloat, brain fog and just plain sickness brought in by celiac disease is one of the many things we celiacs live to avoid. But just because certain grains make us sick doesn’t mean that the foods we live to eat have to be banished into a forbidden memory.
Thankfully, we are lucky enough to live in a city with some gems, some hidden and other well known, making life for celiacs a lot easier and a lot tastier. It’s obvious that going gluten free is what the new health trend seems to be. Be it “paleo”, “clean eating”, or “whatever people are conjuring up diet” its become clear that people are beginning to pay attention to their grain intake and the long or short term affects on their overall health.
It has become easier to locate gluten free breads, pastries and other items but with the market growing so quickly it seems that having a gluten free product has become more important than having a GOOD gluten free product.
A stale brownie that’s been sitting for who knows how long? Looks awful…and kind of crumbly underneath all that plastic wrap…but it’s gluten free!
More quickly gluten free has become a selling point more than “great tasting” gluten free. I think we’ve all fallen victim to one too many dried out, snapable gluten free “bread” or crumbling “muffin”.
So, my point? If you’re like me you miss the little things. Things as simple as taste, and texture. So let’s start small. I needed a good muffin.
There’s one day a week where I like to indulge. In my life it’s known as cheat day, aka marry, glorious calorie filled, no self loathing for eating something I most definitely shouldn’t have day! You know the one. Be it planned or not everyone likes to indulge.
We are lucky enough to live in a city that’s up on trends and with such a vast market people need to stand out. Or more importantly products need to stand out. When I first moved to Toronto my first priority was simple. Find a good gluten free muffin. Cheat day was upon me and I set out in a mission.
Oh, yes. Did ever find the glorious place where many cheat days of past, and many cheat days of the future will be spent.
Not so tucked away on the corner of King Street West and Tecumseth is an independently owned cafe called Wagagmama; a small café with a lot of charm and personality.
At least once a week I tuck myself away in the cozy storefront overlooking a busy and often bustled King Street, and lose myself in a buttery muffin and delicious cup of coffee.
Amid the urban corner, a family owned shop gives a nice sense of escape with a community oriented feel most café often miss. Regulars seem to flock here religiously and I can understand why. The feel is not something I’ve come across in such a large city.
The space offers a sense of peace and calm. Drinks aren’t rushed; food isn’t thrown at you as the clerk behind the counter shouts “Next!” And you don’t get a stink eye from the Barista if you’re not wearing vintage.
Along with the environment Wagamama hosts the wide variety of fresh made gluten free pasties ranging from muffins, (blueberry—pictured below— walnut, and jalapeño cornbread), crème brûlée with an option of chocolate or vanilla, some mini cookies (chocolate almond and peanut butter) for a quick treat to satisfy the pickiest sweet eaters—Ahem, yours truly—as well what every bakery can’t do without; a classic chocolate cupcake. Gluten free cakes are also available upon request.
Not only are the pastries mouth watering, the range gives a selection (which we all know is pretty rare with fresh baked g-free goodies).
The selection not only provides an extra choice, but it makes a gluten intolerant person feel like they’re thought of sincerely, not as an after thought.
The pastries at Wagamama lack the trademark dry texture that usually comes along with gluten free baking and instead have patrons opting for gluten free options over the gluten filled.
The cafe also offers a great variety of espresso-based beverages with high quality taste. The ingredients, such as syrups, are made in store. With the price range about the same as some of the larger corporations, and cheaper then most gluten free bakeries, Wagamama is definitely a place to keep in mind if you want to indulge, relax, or just get some great coffee. Wagamama is a definite must for anyone living a gluten free lifestyle to keep in mind.
By Taija A