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Free Range Turkey

Where do people get their free range, antibiotic-free turkeys in the GTA? Preferably somewhere in North York or Thornhill/Richmond Hill. I work downtown, but I don't want to carry a 20 lb turkey home on the subway :)
Also, if I want one for Christmas Eve, how soon do I get it. Do I pre-order it, etc.?

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  1. In the midtown/downtown area, you can get delicious free range, drug-free turkeys at Cumbrae or Oliffe. I would assume The Healthy Butcher on Queen West and the organic butcher near Yonge and Eglinton (The Butcher?) would also sell them. You can probably start ordering them as early as now but I think so long as you order no later than a week before, you should be fine.

    1. You could also get one by ordering through Whole Foods in Yorkville or any of their other locations

      1. Fresh From The Farm on Donlands will take orders a little closer to Christmas. (Or orders for other things now.) Excellent meat products, free range, pesticode-free and organic (though not certified organic) from Mennonite farmers: freshfromthefarm.ca

        7 Replies
        1. re: Scruncheons

          That is so entirely not in North York/Richmond Hill and a fairly long bus ride up off the subway line along Donlands.

          If you end up having to source downtown, many of the butchers at the St. Lawrence market take orders. It is closer to the subway line. You could certainly try Oliffe (on the Yonge line near Summerhill).

          1. re: Atahualpa

            Entirely not in North York? It's about 2km south of the southern NY boundary. See here: http://www.toronto.ca/committees/coun...

            And you say it's a fairly long bus ride from Donlands subway! It couldn't take more than 5 minutes to travel from Donlands subway to a block or two south of O'Connor. Have you actually been to Fresh From the Farm or is this all speculation? I always order my free range turkey from them and they are fantastic.

            1. re: foodyDudey

              Yes, I live at Greenwood and Mortimer. I go all the time. They are very good and I would recommend them to anyone in the area. Or anyone with a car.

              But,

              1. You said it, it is south of the North York border! The OP clearly wanted somewhere north. Really north. The places mentioned were North York or Thornhill/Richmond Hill. If you take the centre of that area mentioned this is a 30 minute (or more) DRIVE away during the day (it would be fairly quick to pop down the DVP at night).

              2. The 56 Donlands runs very infrequently. Often at almost 30 minute intervals during the day. It is actually about a 10-5 minute bus ride to that point on the route (I know it should be less based on distance, but there is almost always someone getting on or off at both Mortimer and at Cosburn that slows things down and usually means waiting for a full cycle at both lights). I took that bus to Leaside High School for 5 years, I know that it can be a pain during the day.

              I wouldn't bother going to FFTF if I didn't live nearby, didn't have a car, and there was another option. The OP said she didn't want to lug her turkey on the subway. Even if she ends up having to do just that, let's not try and talk her into lugging it on a bus (that she may have to wait quite a while for in an area with nowhere nice to go and wait) and two subways lines -- all necessitating at least 2 (assuming she doesn't take a bus after she leaves the subway) transfers while carrying a bird.

              1. re: Atahualpa

                Thank you both for your input. I looked at the website and it does look like a neat place. I may drive there and pick it up on the Friday before (I want to have it in the oven early on Sat ;)

            2. re: Atahualpa

              Atahualpa, not sure you need to get quite so strident in your reply. I thought the spirit of this place was sharing information, even if that info is slightly out of the way. Clearly Donlands isn't North York buy FFTF is a really neat place that I thought people deserved to know about -- maybe people reading this thread who aren't from North York, for example.

              And for the record, I live a ways away from FFTF, don't have a care, but still shop there!

              1. re: Scruncheons

                Strident? I didn't think I had been strident.

                My first post in reply to yours simply was to point out that it was a long way out of the OP's requested area and a pain if she did indeed have to go by transit. It was one short sentence. I thought that was more than fair.

                In response, I was accused of writing the place off and having never even been to them.

                It turns out that pescatarian has a car and FFTF is a fine suggestion then. But, at the time, the OP more than suggested that wasn't the case. I really question whether anyone else here as luged a 20lb bird on transit. I have, and it is a pain. Given that, and given that one free-range bird is pretty much the same as another (unless you can source individual breeds) I thought it was misleading to suggest FFTF without making it clear that it was a bit of a trek.

                1. re: Atahualpa

                  Atahualpa, sorry if I read snark in your message when snark was not intended. I apologize; however, by saying FFTF is at Donlands, I think I was pretty clear where it was. And the original request was for GTA, preferably North York --- so I took it as a great opportunity to spread the word. As indeed others here have by moving on to lamb! So we're not only geographically diverse, we're protein-diverse as well!

                  I have never seen a thread here stay perfectly on point with regard to the original question -- that's part of what's so great about it.

                  And for the record, yes, I have hauled a 20 lb bird --and much more--on the TTC. I, and other carless chowhounds, do it all the time. I'm not saying it's fun, mind you; I'm saying it happens!

                  To everyone else: sorry for mucking up the thread with things that would be better said in a PM, but I haven't found a PM function, and I did want to be clear.

                  Over and out.

          2. Rowe farm Meats at the St.Lawrence farmers Market has excellent Turkey's. Antibiotic, hormone free.

            1. Those are all downtown! Have you tried calling Reesor's / Village Grocer / Sue's Grocer?

              1 Reply
              1. re: Chester Eleganté

                Thanks all. I do have a car and can manage to get one downtown on the weekend. I'll try one of the places mentioned above.

              2. I agree with Rowe, or Clements, but note that they are at the North Market only.
                So you would need to call them in advance and pickup on a Saturday.
                I have misplaced Rowe's phone, but Clements is 905 987 7239
                Both are excellent quality.
                If I remember correctly Clements is certified, but Rowe's balked at the cost of being certified, but welcomes visitors to their farm, which is somewhere near Barrie.
                I buy from booth, and also purchase Rowe's eggs which are now available at Loblaws.

                1. Have you considered doing a lamb instead for XMas Eve? Its much better than a turkey and everyone will enjoy it!

                  But if you want a great bird you used to be able to order a fully cooked turkey from Pusateris for less than $7/lb. its a great deal!

                  But if you dont want a perfect bird you might want to give RTBF a call. They are located at Jane and Aurora rd. so just north of RH:

                  Round The Bend Farm
                  16225 Jane Street RR 1
                  Kettleby, ON L0G 1J0
                  Canada
                  (905) 727-0023

                  ps - I think you might even be able to get one at Dominion if you call ahead.

                  Chow!
                  HL

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: HarryLloyd

                    Thanks, I actually do not normally have a "Christmas Eve dinner" being jewish and all, but I'd like to do the full turkey meal for my planned dinner party. Maybe I'll try the lamb another day.
                    I only started eating meat again a couple months ago - lamb might be a bit of a leap for me just yet ;)