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Is Cobbs the best bakers in TO?

I love bread and pastries and have tried a lot of the main bakers around TO (Brick st, Epi, Ace, Fred to name a few) but none beat Cobbs. But if anyone knows better please point me in the right direction

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  1. Thuet Atelier

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    Thuet
    609 King St W, Toronto, ON M5V1M5, CA

    1. I guess it depends on what type of bread you like. Cobbs doesn't do the same type of things as the bakers you list, so perhaps you just like the types of bread Cobbs makes. Though I do enjoy Cobbs' "capeseed loaf", I have to say that I would generally prefer the loaves sold by the bakers you consider inferior.

      1. To each his/her own. I would call Cobs, without question, one of the very worst bakers in town. Some of their breads look great, but most of those I've tried don't taste anywhere near as good as they look. Their sweet goods are, in my opinion, disgusting. But I can't lead you anywhere else, since you have mentioned four of the places I'd lead you to first. All four of the places you mention leave Cobs in the dust. So enjoy Cobs. It's not worth your time and effort to search further. Really.

        2 Replies
        1. re: embee

          I'll second embee. I have no idea why Cobbs is in business. The bread is like sawdust.
          Better than Brick St., Epi, Ace and Fred? I'm working hard to hate the chow, love the chowhound, here.

          1. re: pimentdespelette

            not sawdust - more like doughy, flabby white bread buns

        2. I haven't tried Cobs so I can't comment on the Australian chain store, or any of the others except Ace, which is ubiquitous, stale, and overpriced even in Costco.
          I prefer my local rye and baguette purveyor, Terrance at Breadhouse, Bayly and West Shore, Pickering. The breads are often too warm to slice, and the flavour is better than Ace. Terry's Austrian seeded loaf is great in the car after I leave the store. Only a few loaves per day, however.

          1 Reply
          1. re: jayt90

            I know, everytime I get an Ace baguette these days it is completely stale. I used to love them but I'm getting fed up.
            My votes go to:
            St John's, Stonemill, Thuet

          2. My vote goes to Epi

            Sorry Larry

            DT

            4 Replies
            1. re: Davwud

              I wasn't overly impressed with Cobs. Thuet is fantastic, but far. Lately i've been getting bread from St. John's Bakery at the Brickworks market Saturday mornings. Lately we've been getting the Soughdough Olive, which when compared to Epi or Ace is a no-brainer. It must have 4x the olives in the bread. We also tend to get a Mulitgrain Sourdough. I find that their breads hold up better on the second and third day than Ace, Epi or Cobs.....

              1. re: kmoore

                Wow I am amazed to see that someone would consider Cobbs the best bread in the city. Maybe it was just the items that I ordered there that were bland and gluey. What is it about the breads there that you like so much?

                1. re: kmoore

                  I have a bit of a soft spot for Epi. I went in there for my first visit and only wanted a roll to make a sandwich for lunch. They didn't charge me for it. Won me over.

                  Never beet to St. J or Th.

                  DT

                  1. re: kmoore

                    Buy ST. John's directly from its shop on Broadview Avenue (north of Queen). It's cheaper than if you purchase at the locations where the set up (e.g. Withrow Park, Brickworks, etc.).

                2. I can't stand cobbs in my neighbourhood (the annex) I tend to go pain perdu for their righteous croissants and baguette.

                  1. Cobbs makes great bread if you like it soft, white and bland. There really isn't anywhere else in town to get a loaf like that (thankfully, IMO). My local Sobey's does a better "artisan" loaf... though it's still miles away from the likes of St John's or Epi.

                    That said, I did very much enjoy their pumpkin scones last fall. Soft, a little spicy but not too sweet, and just the right amount of frosting to counterpoint... it's too bad nothing else in their store has ever lived up to the same standard as those scones.

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: tartiflette

                      Cobbs?! Bah.

                      Epi, not much better.

                      1. re: magic

                        I wish people would provide the addresses where some of the bakeries are located, because you guys are getting me hungry.

                    2. i was floored when i saw the title for this post, knowing the vehement feeling on this board twd Cobbs.

                      has anyone tried the bread at Sherwood Market?

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                      Sherwood Market
                      1054 Mt Pleasant Rd, Toronto, ON M4P, CA

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: LemonLauren

                        Does Sherwood bake their own bread?

                      2. Unsliced Wonderbread lives.

                        3 Replies
                        1. re: mrbozo

                          actually the cape seed and the fruit bread at Cobbs are very good. I love Fred's Bread and Brick Street as well. Ace is often stale and since it has exploded into the loblaws gig has really gone downhill.

                          1. re: ren horace

                            Yes, unfortunately, Ace's quality does seem to have dropped.

                            My favourite bread option over the past few months has been the Première Moisson (a Montreal franchise bakery) line of products now carried by at least some Dominion stores. Their baguette is the best in town IMO.

                            I also very much enjoy the organic Russian rye bread My Market Bakery in Kensington Market has shipped in from its artisanal baker once or twice a week. This is real, dark, coarse, high density rye bread.

                            1. re: mrbozo

                              i second that. to bad they have not opened here

                        2. Cobbs = Yuck

                          But hey, I like frozen Ace baguettes!

                          5 Replies
                          1. re: JonasBrand

                            I've got to second the frozen Ace baguettes... I find they brown wonderfully and taste great with copious quantities of butter smeared on them. I'm totally addicted.

                            1. re: JonasBrand

                              where are these frozen baguettes available? most supermarkets?

                              1. re: auberginegal

                                Loblaws has frozen Ace. Dominion may still, but it's been a while since I shopped in one. Not quite the same as getting fresh from a reputable baker, but hey winter's coming.

                                1. re: auberginegal

                                  I get mine from the Real Canadian Superstore at Don Mills and Eglinton. You can choose from white or whole wheat. I like both!

                                  1. re: auberginegal

                                    Costco has 12 for $14, and they are very convenient and fresh when revived in a toaster oven. The crust is very thick, almost a carricature baguette for uppies.

                                2. yes, Cobb is not one of my favorites but I have no problems with it. I'd put the Brik and or St. John's near the top though.

                                  1. there used to be an excellent bakery called the "Slice of Life" on Coxwell unfortunately it's gone (Carole was the owner). I enjoy buying bread at Zane's in the beaches - baguettes and pain de noix are fantastic!!.

                                    1. Cobbs makes bread like a franchise. Think, McDonalds, KFC, etc.
                                      I was really looking forward to the potato bread I got from Thuet but, unfortunately, it didn't impress.
                                      I'm still looking for good bread in the city. I will try Brick and try to keep my expectations low.

                                      1 Reply
                                      1. re: open_sesame8000

                                        Unfortunately, can't offer an opion about Cob's, but from the look of it, I wasn't impressed...but I think you guys are also forgetting about one other place...Future's Bakery...not the stuff that you get in the local grocery store, but making the pilgimage out to Etobicoke, to get the bread that was made fresh that day. Especially the poppy seed rye....hands down my personal favourite of the ryes they make. Mmmm toasted up with some creamy liverwurst and Woeber's spicy brown mustard....DAMN...someone get me a napkin to wipe my salivating mouth.

                                      2. "Best Bread" is so subjective isn't it?

                                        I will tell you this, I am a business traveller who finds herself very often in Toronto these days. As part of my normal routine, I go to Cobbs to buy all the vegemite scrolls they have available as well as a couple of plain white loaves. I take them home to my husband who misses vegemite scrolls (of course) but also misses plain, uncomplicated, white bread that isn't pasty/mushy/full of sugar like the loaves we find on grocery shelves and also on bakery shelves in Houston.

                                        Now granted it may not be the "best bread" for all occassions, but when we want just plain old toasting bread...we prefer a loaf like cobbs white or wheat. Oh! The joy of a loaf of bread that actually hardens as it goes stale! We also quite like their date scones. It's a little taste of Australia, the recipes for scrolls, bread and scones are consistent with the original australian chain (bakers delight).

                                        It fits a specific need for us, and for that alone, it is the bakery I regularly vist when I'm here in Toronto.

                                        1. Cobb's is not bad if you buy the country bread, or the whole grain. St John's often is good, but it is a training bakery so quality is highly variable. I usually import bread from Montreal's Première Moisson, and oulw dlike to know which Dominion carries it. Ace is often too oily, and Thuet too solid and hard - peasant bread.

                                          2 Replies
                                          1. re: kurtwalter

                                            It's at the Liberty Village Dominion for sure.

                                            I hear what you're saying about Thuet bread but it has a lot of flavour. i find it's dense, not hard. His foccacia is very soft and airy.

                                            1. re: kurtwalter

                                              Ace is "too oily"? Which bread? Can't be the granary, the baguette, the raisin-nut or the olive... the only one I can imagine as too oily is the focaccia.

                                            2. Wow, I just tried Cobbs bread for the first time and it was the most tasteless, doughy mess I've ever had. Honestly! I was so surprised I came online looking to see if they had a list of breads that were perhaps more interesting. I thought it must just be the type of bread I'd bought from them but if all their stuff is this bad it's amazing they're still in business. And it smells like my hamster food pellets! I couldn't place the smell for a while but that's what it is. Yuck.

                                              3 Replies
                                              1. re: snowbound77

                                                Yes, Cobs IS that bad - much of their stuff and most of their sweet stuff, all of the time. I don't understand the lineups. It smells good, it looks good, and it tastes awful - with very few exceptions - consistently

                                                1. re: snowbound77

                                                  I first encountered Cobb's when we were in Vancouver in September, we walked in the store and everything smelled pretty good, so we bought some sort of loaf with currants or raisins in it. I brought it home and tried a piece, it was really disgusting - soft, doughy and rather tasteless. I was lucky that my wife's cousin's 16 year old son was there to finish it off! I'm not sure how or why stores like this can survive and even be growing in numbers. It's probably going to be like KK doughnuts, they will implode in a few years.

                                                  1. re: foodyDudey

                                                    It is part of a multinational franchise based, I think, in Australia. I have had a few things there that were okay, though no better than that. A seed bread comes to mind - it looked great; it was edible. Most of what I've tried was poor to flat out inedible.

                                                2. I am trying to stay away from gluten, so I am not a regular bread eater. But I have to say that the cape seed rolls at Cobs make me "cheat" occasionally. Only, the rolls, though. I tried the loaf and it's too airy for me. I can not speak for the other products. But I like the fact that they don't put sugar in their whole grain breads.

                                                  How about Artisano on Islington? A couple of years ago I got a really nice fig bread from there and the desserts were good, too.

                                                  I also like the rye bread from Caldense.

                                                  1. I bought a loaf of country style bread at Cobbs in Kensington Market recently and it was the best ever for me! can't find any Loblaw's or Metro Stores open today so I'm heading over to Cobb's, who ARE open and possibly get the rest of the groceries I need in that area.

                                                    P.S. They also gave me for free their new hot cross buns for Easter with chocolate chip! Yum.

                                                    3 Replies
                                                    1. re: Patches_1

                                                      If you like Cobb's you should try the Weston Bakeries outlet store on Logan just north of Eastern, the quality of the bread at both places is similar.

                                                      1. re: foodyDudey

                                                        snort

                                                      2. re: Patches_1

                                                        Wait...I'm sorry...chocolate chips??? In a hot cross bun? Is this not an abomination? Hot cross buns and chocolate have nothing to do with one another as far as I am concerned. But feel free to correct me if I'm wrong.

                                                      3. The best country white loaf is the Premiere Moisson carried by both Metro and now Costco by far in my opinion. It is chewy and airy at the same time, nothing beats a piece of that with nice Irish butter (which i got from Bahamas on my holidays - who would think?!)!
                                                        Since I have to get two loaves from Costco and thus have to freeze one bag, I find it definitely lose some of its moisture afterward, but still beats Cobbs anyday!