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What' the most aromatic butter u can get in Toronto

  • w

Doing some baking experiments and found that the butter I've been using (Lactantia) is not as aromatic as I want. Anyone has any idea where I can find better and more aromatic better?


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  1. Have you considered doing your own butter blends?

    1. If you're looking for sweetness President's Choice has a "Normandy" style butter. Very sweet. It's nice but personally I have to be in the mood for it as it is quite sweet. And very aromatic. I haven't found any in No Frills but pretty much any Loblaws or Superstore would carry it.

      8 Replies
      1. re: magic

        Are you looking for cultured butter or flavoured butter?

        1. re: mrbozo

          I am looking for cultured butter.

          I am making laminated pastry for tart shells, after a few tries, the texture is similar to what I had before the but aroma is not quite there. So I am just hoping to see if other kinds of butter would make it better.

          1. re: wciu

            Out of curiosity, what butter did you previously use that gave you satisfactory results?

            As mentioned by others in this thread President's Choice does make a Normandy style butter. L'Ancêtre Bio Organic is the Québec butter referred to below. You can buy it at Fiesta Farms on Christie.Organic Meadow (an Ontario producer) butter is also available at FF.

            And, yes, if you visit Québec you will find a vast array of artisanal cheeses and butters. Here's an article on the latter: http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servle...

            1. re: mrbozo

              Thanks for the info. It wasn't something that I used before, rather what I had in Hong Kong that I am trying to reproduce. That's why I am looking for suggestions. :)

              1. re: wciu

                Hmmm, what did you have? Is it possible that lard was used?

        2. re: magic

          Normandy style butter huh? Didn't know about that. I live quite close to a Superstore, may be I'll drop by tomorrow to see if I can find it. Wonder if the moisture content in that butter is lower as well...

          1. re: wciu

            It has a slightly higher fat content and would, logically, have a slightly lower moisture content. There IS a difference, which some people notice but many others don't.

            It would probably be helpful for your tart shells. Simply spread on neutral crackers, I'm not so sure.

            I gather there are many artisanal butters you can get in Quebec, but only one of these is legal in Ontario. Pusateri's carries this one, but I believe it is salted. There's a decent chance that a few major cheese sources might have some options, such as All the Best or a couple of places in the Queensway area.

            1. re: wciu

              Love the PC Normandy. Buy it when eating it fresh and make curls out of it. Delish.

          2. Although I haven't tried any 'baking' tests, I've reported on several threads about 'taste'.
            Regrettably (for you) I would have recommended the Lactantia - all around the best 'value' - I've found a few other butters that are comparable - but all more expensive (there's a brand called 'Organic Meadow' that's fairly widely available, but no better (IMO) and costs about 50% more).
            Absolutely I would recommend the President's Choice - although (as mentioned above) it is definitely sweeter to the taste, so I'm not sure how well it will fare in baking (both salted and unsalted available). There was a 'My Compliments' version available at one time (less sweet) but it hasn't been seen in my local supermarket for some time.

            One solution that may help - you can sometimes find 'whey butter' for sale. I'm not a complete fan, but find that when mixed with lactantia I get a pretty good 'blend' that has something 'extra'. I use AT LEAST 50% Lactantia though.
            There is a revolving selection of imported butter at Schefflers (In St Lawrence market), but last time I checked didn't see any cultured butters - and be SURE to check expiry dates there as Schefflers are not too concerned about removing items past the expiry date. I've had rancid butter from there in the past.

            2 Replies
            1. re: estufarian

              Thanks for the suggestions. I do agree that Lactantia is one of the better ones, but I only tried a few brands so I was thinking there might be some special ones around that I didn't know about. These are great feedback, and I'll definitely test them out and report back.

              1. re: estufarian

                If you're looking for Whey Butter for that blend, one source I've found is Reid's Dairy. Here in Markham they seem to have it consistently, and at the same price as their regular butter. Check http://www.reidsdairy.com/stores.htm to see if there's a location near you. Good luck!

              2. I'm all about the Normandy style butter. It's really the closest I have come to French butter. Even after ordering the Echire Beurre after reading a previous post about butter... I think PC wins! Even the salted is as good as the unsalted.

                1 Reply
                1. re: torontogourmet

                  Echire is one of the great butters on planet earth.

                  1. thought i'd insert an interesting find
                    I was googling to look for alternatives to Rob Howland's langdon hall butter which doesn't seem to be avail through the website as promised a while back (www.thebutterworks.com) and came across Saveur's list of 30 great butters
                    Canada did alright actually! Check it out:

                    Stirling http://www.saveur.com/gallery/30-Grea...
                    Liberte Goat Milk http://www.saveur.com/gallery/30-Grea... (avail in ont i think
                    )Lactancia http://www.saveur.com/gallery/30-Grea...
                    L'Ancentre http://www.saveur.com/gallery/30-Grea... (never seen it here before)

                    16 Replies
                    1. re: CoffeeAddict416

                      ca416 - Ambrosia up in Thornhill carries that L'Ancetre butter, for $5.49 I believe. They might be able to get the Liberte goat butter as well if you ask nicely..

                      1. re: Chester Eleganté

                        I actually saw the liberte goat milk butter at big carrot this past weekend and saw the stirling butter at st lawrence mkt north saturday morning.

                        Is it just me or was stirling like everywhere a long time ago?

                        Thanks for the heads up on the l'ancetre. I'm hardly ever up there though. If i see it downtown I'll try and post it in this thread

                        1. re: CoffeeAddict416

                          I saw both the L'Ancetre and the Liberté at Planet Organic as well recently. However, they only have locations in Thornhill and Port Credit.

                          btw, Loblaw's currently has Lactancia butters on sale for $2.99.

                          1. re: Chester Eleganté

                            If that is $2.99 /lb of Lactancia salted or unsalted, I'll be heading there tonight!

                            1. re: jayt90

                              should cover whatever they have in stock!

                              1. re: Chester Eleganté

                                I was able to get as much unsalted Lactantia at Loblaw as I wanted. No salted was on the shelf.
                                What was on sale was regular churned Lactantia; the cultured "My Country" was still $6/lb.

                                I also picked up U.S. back ribs, in cryovac, at $3/lb.
                                I'm sure the other chains will follow through with sales on Canadian back ribs.

                                1. re: jayt90

                                  Jay, good deal. If you got a lot of butter, to preserve its flavor put the packages in freezer bags and suck out as much air as possible with a straw before zipping closed. They will keep well 90 days down low and back in your freezer.

                                  1. re: jayt90

                                    It has to be Lactantia's cultured, unsalted for me. I'd pay double for that. In fact I just did yesterday. At least the nice check-out person pointed out it wasn't the sale one before she rang it through. Don't care. Gotta be the cultured, unsalted.

                                    1. re: Googs

                                      Re-reading this string, Googs, you are right. The rest of us blindly bought the regular grade Lactantia , salted or unsalted, but not cultured. I have now seen this go on sale many times, but cultured, never.

                        2. re: CoffeeAddict416

                          Hey Coffee,

                          I don't think I ever said that you could buy the butter via a web site (sorry if I gave that impression) but that you could check out the web site to find out when we would be able to sell it. Any-who we have teamed up with MonForte dairy and we will be able to sell the butter soon! Great list by the way.

                          Glad so many people are interested in good butter!


                          1. re: rhowland

                            Sorry Rob I guess I had misunderstood regarding the website
                            Glad to hear I'll finally be able to get at your butter without making the trek to Langdon Hall

                            1. re: rhowland

                              Bring the MonForte whey-fed pork with the butter to the SLM and you can definitely colour me there.

                            2. re: CoffeeAddict416

                              I just saw L'Acentre at the Shoppers on Mt Pleasant just south of Eglinton - $5.49

                              1. re: Degustation

                                Chabichou, the new cheese store on harbord has all sorts of interesting goast butters as well as french style butter and butter actually from france

                                1. re: Epicure3333

                                  Where is the new cheese store on Harbord?

                                  1. re: acd123

                                    The south side of Harbord and Borden, just east of bathurst. Across from Central Tech high school.

                            3. My wife and I did a little tasting experiment tonight for dinner.

                              I was driving around out in the Hastings area and I picked up some local products. A pound of Stirling Creamery Salted Butter and a pound of Stirling Creamery "Hastings" Whey Butter. I also picked up a pound of Mapledale Extra Old Cheddar Cheese and Empire Cheese 4 year Supreme Cheddar as well as a baggie of Mapledale Cheese Curd.
                              We tried them all with two types of bread. 1st was a Winnipeg Rye that I picked up at the Marmora Valu-mart and a cook at home baguette from Ace Bakery (available at Costco).
                              I also served some Neilson butter just to see the difference.

                              Neilson Butter hasn't any taste at all
                              Stirling Creamery Salted Butter was very creamy and a nice level of salt, but pretty mild.
                              Hastings Whey Butter was the absolute winner by far. So much taste and so creamy.

                              Mapledale curd probably could use more salt but was pretty dull. Maybe it was not very fresh. But curd has been a personal favourite since I was a child and my family would buy huge bags for next to nothing from the Harold Cheese Factory outside Stirling. I get it so rarely that I am just happy to have it. But....it just doesn't seem as good as it used to be.

                              The Mapledale Extra Old would have been great it it wasn't served next to the Empire 4 yr Old Supreme. The Empire was SO good you couldn't even compare the Mapledale in flavour. I don't know how long Mapledale ages their Extra Old so I can't say it was a straight up challenge. But the Empire was the winner by a mile. Try it.


                              1 Reply
                              1. re: Conductorchris

                                Empire Supreme is hands-down my favourite Ontario cheddar! If you see the 5- and 6-yr-old versions, give them a go too. The 6-yr old can be a bit strong for the more mildly-inclined, but I love it. Whenever I stop by the factory store, I usually wind up dropping a whole bunch of cash stocking up.

                              2. Pusateri's had Thornloe dairies butter, and a weird circular block called buerre ancienne? which was hard as cheese and cultured closest to Beurre d'Isigny I've had.

                                1539 Avenue Rd, Toronto, ON M5M, CA

                                1. This is most interesting to read. I'm familiar with some brands but I like butter with pronounced flavour.

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: serbianbelle

                                    Found Echire Buerre at Provincial foods on Church st next to Cumbrae's meats.

                                    481 Church St, Toronto, ON M4Y, CA

                                  2. You gotta try Montforte's, they churn it themselves (using Organic meadow cream, iirc).

                                    Oliffe's has a new 84% high fat butter from Stirling, another must-try (they also have the whey butter). May find this at Healthy Butcher too.


                                    16 Replies
                                    1. re: Chester Eleganté

                                      Wow that Stirling Creamery website has everything EXCEPT A LIST OF RETAILERS. Sheesh.


                                      1. re: Googs

                                        I know a few of the cheese shops in the (South) St. Lawrence Market do carry Stirling. Specifically, I seem to remember the cheese place in the Southeast corner stocking it. Probably other shops there as well.

                                        Culinarium might as well.

                                        Possibly Fiesta Farms, Pusateri`s, and the other usual suspects (Cheese Boutique??) - which I know are not in your general area.

                                        Scaramouche used to use Stirling. Not sure if they still do.

                                        1. re: magic

                                          It's even possible that Metro would carry it. They're cheese selections are pretty good compared to other major grocers. Why not have Stirling? Now where can you find that out? If only someone had invented a searchable information repository. Hmmmmmm

                                          1. re: Googs

                                            I make it my business to know those kinds of offerings, and I've never seen Stirling at a Metro or any other large chain grocer. Maybe I've missed it, but as far as I know, no large chain currently carries Stirling :(

                                            1. re: magic

                                              I've found Stirling butter at the Valumart in Marmora. And at the grocery store in Norwood.

                                          2. re: magic

                                            Fiesta Farms carries Stirling.

                                              1. re: acd123

                                                Was at FF today and there did not seem to be any unsalted Stirling - just salted and whey. Perhaps they were just out?

                                              2. re: magic

                                                Culinarium has it in three types - salted, non salted and whey, about $6-$7.

                                                1. re: magic

                                                  The place I was thinking of is Alex Farm in the SE corner of St. Lawrence Market (main south market).

                                                  Stirling for $5.99 per block.

                                                2. re: Googs

                                                  They have an e mail contact, and I have asked for location info on Churn 84 butter. I will report, if they reply.

                                                  1. re: jayt90

                                                    Until they decide to put retailers on their retail page, any luck with getting info to one person at a time via e-mail?

                                                    1. re: Googs

                                                      Not a word from bill.w@stirlingcreamery.com
                                                      Maybe he can be nudged with several requests.
                                                      Be sure to specify high bf Churn 84.

                                                      1. re: jayt90

                                                        I got a reply that the 84% butter is available at Oliffe's, and The Healthy Butcher.
                                                        I just picked it up from from Oliffe's. $9 for a half pound.

                                                        1. re: sbug206

                                                          Thanks for the info. I picked some up at Oliffe's this morning. Holy crow is it ever good. Mild creamy flavour. Once you've had 84% butter fat, you'll never go back! lol

                                              3. Scheffer's carries an AOP (Protectected Designation of Origin) butter from Normandy called D'Isigny, better than most butters made in Canada. Quite expensive, though (approx. $15).

                                                12 Replies
                                                1. re: ghostdogg

                                                  Does anyone carry Kerrygold butter from Ireland? I've seen ads in my food mags for it. I can get their cheddar and smoked cheddar, so perhaps the butter is available somewhere as well?

                                                  1. re: 1sweetpea

                                                    i highly recommnd THE ART OF CHEESE on kingston road near victoria park! the owner seems to be a butter afficionado and stocks it from quite a few dairies. i forget the name of the dairy that produces the whey butter i tried there but it was certainly delicious!

                                                    1. re: 1sweetpea

                                                      Sweetpea ... hop over the ambassador bridge...

                                                      The Produce Station (Ann Arbor, MI)

                                                      1. re: plug

                                                        Not only is that a very long hop - but it's illegal to bring it back as well!

                                                        1. re: estufarian

                                                          its illegal?
                                                          why is that?

                                                          FYI - sweetpea i believe resides in Windsor now.. so its not a long hop at all.

                                                          1. re: plug

                                                            Private importations of Euripean butter are illegal - you need a permit.

                                                            Last time I brought in butter (Italian) it was confiscated and burned because of the risk of 'hoof and mouth disease'. Actually I can't prove it was burned. I just saw it wrapped in a bag and deposited in a container with a large stencil on its side saying INCINERATION.

                                                            When I protested that Italy has NEVER had a case of hoof and mouth disease it carried no weight - essentially ALL European butter is 'banned' unless imported with a permit.

                                                            You may well ask why it's illegal. This has been discussed several times on this Board.

                                                            My view is that it's to protect the Canadian Dairy industry!

                                                            1. re: estufarian

                                                              I know if i brought in goods (meats and dairy) from europe they would be confiscated but i 'thought' if its been imported already into the US we can bring it into canada. We used to go grocery shopping all the time in michigan and bring it into canada.
                                                              and butter is listed as a product on this site we can bring over

                                                              1. re: plug

                                                                Yes, I live in Windsor. Yes, Ann Arbor is a long-ish hop, but a worthwhile one if I have a few reasons to go. I'm a bit torn, though. I had no idea there might be issues with bringing European butter into Canada from the U.S. For the most part, I find the Canadian customs agents in the booths pretty easy-going, especially if you declare something and have documents handy. But, I'd be tempted to buy a few things and have the bills handy, but just not mention the butter's origin whatsoever. Should I get run in for inspection, though, I might run into trouble, depending on how thorough the inspection is. I wonder if it would better if an American citizen friend were to bring it over for me, or would it make no difference who the person is transporting the "illegal" butter? Does anyone have any concrete details either way?

                                                                I almost never get run in for inspection, but all it takes is one time, so I'm reluctant these days to omit anything when declaring.

                                                                1. re: 1sweetpea

                                                                  Call the Canadian border (customs) they will tell you if its ok.. i've called them a few times in the past with similar questions and they were quite hospitable.

                                                      2. re: 1sweetpea

                                                        bought Kerrygold spreadable butter (softer and more moisture content) when I was in Florida this Xmas and this is definitely better than ones I have tried here in TO.

                                                        Did see Sterling butter varieties in Galati supermarket on Leslie north of Finch a few months ago.

                                                        1. re: 1sweetpea

                                                          I had it all over Ireland this summer and then was surprised to find it in Wegman's in Orchard Park, NY (outside Buffalo).

                                                      3. I cannot easily find Lactancia cultured salted butter, but I use the unsalted cultured version almost as a staple. I was dismayed to learn that they sell a standard butter called Lactancia 'country churned' with little real flavor, but priced as low as $3/lb.
                                                        I have found an inexpensive salted butter that is very good, made by Ship Cove Creamery, Placentia Bay, Newfoundland.
                                                        It is stocked by Giant Tiger under the Spyglass label.


                                                        6 Replies
                                                        1. re: jayt90

                                                          Fiesta Farms stocks Lactantia Cultured Salted Butter as a regular item.

                                                          1. re: estufarian

                                                            I'm pretty sure I saw Stirling Creamery butters at Whole Foods on Avenue Road in Toronto. They carry salted, unsalted and the whey butter, which is delicious, but pretty salty. It might be a problem for baking, unless you are confident that you can adjust the additional salt called for in recipes.

                                                            1. re: estufarian

                                                              It's odd that Fiesta is the only source we know about. However, Giant Tiger is getting some products from small creameries, and I'll be checking them once in awhile.

                                                              1. re: jayt90

                                                                I think I saw Stirling Butter at Longos in Leaside.

                                                                1. re: jayt90

                                                                  Giant Tiger has Stirling salted this week on flyer special at $2.75 per pound.

                                                              2. re: jayt90

                                                                Spyglass butter, salted, from Ship's Cove, Placentia Bay, Newfoundland and Labrador,
                                                                is on sale at $2.75 per pound, at Giant Tiger until late next week.
                                                                At this time of year it is likely to be grass fed. The Google map shows nothing except pasture and a creamery on this verdant acreage of the Avalon.

                                                                Some GT's may also have Stirling salted at $2.75/lb; mine did not.

                                                              3. Sobey's is selling bricks of some kind of new butter from PEI, it's in a yellow or black wrapper (salted or unsalted) and has a cartoon cow on the package. I was gonna buy it but we've already got enough in the fridge..

                                                                I can't remember the damn name of it though

                                                                2 Replies
                                                                1. re: duckdown

                                                                  If it's the same as we get in BC, it's insanely salty. I couldn't eat it. I do usually use unsalted, but if I'm eating it on plain bread I'll sprinkle it with salt. But that stuff was inedible.

                                                                  1. re: sarahendipity

                                                                    For a big flavor boost you may want to try the old restaurant trick for table butter of whipping browned butter ( aka beurre noisette) into softened fresh butter at the ratio of 1:2.

                                                                2. Yummy Mart has one of the most diverse selections around. It changes a bit from time to time, but I have seen:

                                                                  Mlekovita - all 82% unsalted from Poland. Thumbing around some, Mlekovita (the Polskie Extra) is a top butter producer there and they claim to use 'extra class' milk from what's called the Green Lungs of Poland, their ecologically cleanest region. And that it's high in vitamins A, D, & carotenoids, so it does imply a pastured product. Taste is fine but lighter than I like, as is the colour.

                                                                  Mehadrin from Israel

                                                                  Stirling 84% and whey butter

                                                                  L'Ancetre salted (primarily pastured)

                                                                  Hewitt's goat butter

                                                                  Lactancia unsalted cultured

                                                                  Laziza ghee

                                                                  a so called Amish butter from Philly

                                                                  Personally, I use Purity Farms organic pastured ghee (from Wisconsin) and it's great with a deep rich flavour and aroma. Locally, St. Francis Herb Farms makes a similar product albeit more expensive.

                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                  1. My favourite butter is from http://www.portuguesecheese.com/Chees...

                                                                    It is salty and delicious.

                                                                    Not sure where they sell it in store but you can buy directly from the factory.

                                                                    You can reach us by email at:


                                                                    or write us at

                                                                    Portuguese Cheese Company
                                                                    2 Buckingham Street
                                                                    Toronto, Ontario
                                                                    M8Y 2W1

                                                                    Telephone: 416 259-4349